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Re: Dream Destination 3/3-3/9

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 6:53 am
by Trissa
It isn't exactly a "dream destination" but more of a place of fond memory and feelings. I remember the humid summer nights of my childhood in Iowa. It would be so humid it felt like you were breathing through a wet washcloth: the air heavy with earthy smells. As dusk settled, the yard filled with the light of hundreds of fireflys. The air was filled with our laughter and the loud screech of cicadas. Later as I lay in bed, I listened to the voices of the grown-ups as they sat on the back porch talking about the day or memories of their own youth. Somewhere in the background, a train whistle sounded, a screen door creaked. These were the sounds that sang me to sleep.

Re: Dream Destination 3/3-3/9

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 11:25 pm
by sns3guppy
On any given day, I go anywhere in the world. Sometimes it’s the perfect moonscape of the Arab Empty Quarter. Often the urban canyons of downtown Hong Kong. I see the amazing geography of Pakistan, and the empty arctic eastern coast of Siberia. The raw beauty of the Alaskan North Slope captivates, yet no more than the bare sand beaches of the Persian Gulf. Sometimes at night, I survey the river Meuse from the comfort of an old bridge in Liege, others I sit under a street light in Madrid, eating fish. Aspen trees in Oslo call me, but the sanitary perfection in Nagoya orders my soul.

To choose to go anywhere in the world is to see another mountain, another hotel. To hear another tongue, eat another food, I need only wait another day. The grass is always greener in Ireland, yet the Shannon hotels are cold and wet. The wind blows against the cliffs of Dover, yet not nearly as bitterly as Khabarovsk. I watch the moon rise over Mosul, peaceful counterpoint to an incoming mortar round, and feel the ground rumble under a distant car bomb. Karachi in the dark looks much like Detroit in the quiet hours, remarkably like Glasgow in the night, but nothing like L.A.

Hawaii rises out of shapeless black space after nearly five hours flying, to lend a straight stretch of runway and a welcome bed in Waikiki. I love her beaches by day, the ocean breeze by night. The tourists scare me off. Adventure lies in the caverns beneath New York City, a maze I will never master, but that fascinates me all the same. Too many people. The Andes rise up beneath me, beckoning, while the deadly clutches of the Hindu Kush warn me away.

I travel because I must; Amsterdam, Bahrain, Cairo, Doha, El Paso, Frankfurt, Guadalupe, Hiroshima, Ipswich, Jordan, Kandahar, Lagos, Mosul, Newark, Oslo, Phoenix, Qassim, Rabaul, Sydney, Townsville, Utah, Vancouver, Wollongong, Zaragoza. The entire alphabet but X that never marks the spot. Not a good one, anyway.

Lions on the airport in Nairobi, bombs and missiles in Basrah, fighting in Jerusalem, earthquakes in Mosul, snipers in Afghanistan, volcanoes in Iceland and Russia, narc-oterrorists in Colombia. In Amman I walk where Jesus walked, under the watchful gaze of men bearing MP5 submachine guns. The Pyramids in Egypt look like the Taj Mahal, when landing in a muddy dust storm, as impressive as shapeless hills of sand. These are my tourist attractions, and they attract me not. I am the unwilling tourist.

If I could choose anywhere in the world, do anything, it would be to stay home, to relish the guilty pleasure of knowing the horizon over which I’ll see the sun rise tomorrow. To know the bed I’ll sleep in tonight, and on which pillow my head will rest tomorrow, that is the unapproachable dream. Home may be where one hangs the hat, but heaven is where one drives the nail.

RE: Dream Destination 3/3-3/9

PostPosted: Thu Feb 17, 2011 9:32 am
by loganatr
If I had to pick one place, I'd first be up half the night, agonizing because I can't choose between China and somewhere in Latin America. Or because I have to, rather. Have to choose. No time to edit, I have work in half an hour and this isn' t the only thing I'd like to get done. All the same, I'm not rushing overly.
Eventually, however, I'd decide that since my one good Chinese friend is still in America, I would have to increase my knowledge of her culture as slowly as I'd been doing, maybe working my way around to Three Kingdoms, volumes two and three, eventually; but for now, I have to go to Latin America, and then since I really haven't increased my focus on that regard because I'm so open, I'd probably eventually think of a way to do some hiking in Mexico.
I'm actually really starting to believe that this might be a good way to see Mexico. Of course, I've done very little research on the matter, I'm just kind of interjecting an opinion, an idea, an impresion without much basis in fact, as it were. But i'd like to see Mexico, to see how people are and how they live and how they better be; and also, I'd like to increase my understanding of the world.
This is all so stock and boring, I realize, what I'm saying. But the truth is that I've been dying to go to Mexico since I was fifteen or sixteen and got the urge to learn spanish. Now here I am, twenty-three, and I still wouldn't say that I'm anywhere near fluent; on the other hand, I read a book in a few days titled Los Diez Secretos de la Salud Abundante, which was basically like a new age help book, but it went about my speed, and used a lot of sentence structures that I identified, so yeah I've read a slowly growing number of books en espanol.
Where to, in Mexico? Or what to do? Who to go with? I don't know; interact with people and see stuff; and somebody that I like, who I haven't met yet. There's gotta be somebody cool to go to Mexico with. Maybe I should just make a craigslist ad. I don't know. Mexico!