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Friday, 03 July 2009

Turkish Bath in Hama, Syria

Nine more hours to go. ...Ugh! It may as well have been nine more days as far as my comfort level was concerned. I was on my way home from a three week trip to Syria and the flight back seemed like it was lasting forever. Stuck between my burly friend and a hairy, middle-aged man who had yet to learn about the wonders of deodorant, my options to kill time were severely limited. Both had figured out a way to sleep vertically leaving my attempts at conversation at a standstill. I wish I could’ve joined them but in all my years traveling, I’ve never managed to contort myself to the proper angle in a plane seat to maintain comfortable sleep. The only way I’ve ever guessed it was possible was to lean on the shoulder of a flight mate. I wasn’t too keen on having the right side of my face smell like boiled onions by choosing the sweaty man’s shoulder, nor was I willing to risk getting punched in the face for snuggling my impulsively violent sound-asleep friend. Sleeping was out.

Published in inhale

For all of my aesthetic beauty, my technology was “green” long before the term was coined. Driven by the flowing river in days past, my job was to scoop up water in small receptacles attached to each of the many spokes of my giant wheel and empty the contents into an advanced aqueduct system. I still turn today in this ancient city, although not as much as I did when the land I irrigate was still in agricultural use. When I rotate, my wheel creaks and squeaks – it is often referred to as “singing”.

Published in incognito
Monday, 23 March 2009

To Seville and Back

A week ago, I was just as frustrated as any other chump annoyed by the weight of responsibility. Finishing one job just to rush to the next; paying one bill and another was already on its way. The monotony was beginning to take its toll. Food didn’t taste as good and Seinfeld wasn’t making me laugh as hard. It was definitely time for a vacation. So as a travel hippie at heart, it didn’t take more than a little opportunity and some extra cash to transform my trip from elaborate daydream to comforting reality.

Published in interest
Friday, 06 February 2009

The Peace Corps' Dark Side

The Peace Corps experience I had, although difficult, was one I wouldn’t trade for the world. I learned a different language, experienced a new culture, made lasting friendships, and, I’d like to think, helped a little in the process. I was posted in the West African nation of Niger, a country known for little more than its Uranium deposits, millet production and overwhelming poverty. I was stationed in a small village that hovered along the Nigerian border. The transition was rough, but I loved every minute of it. But that’s not to say that everything I gained didn’t come at a price. Living in a foreign country, especially a third world country, requires one to adjust both mentally and physically. I felt I was prepared for this, but like a soldier who brashly assumes he’s prepared for war, and cracks under the line of fire, I wasn’t ready for the shame that many of my experiences would leave me with.

 

Published in inept

When visiting Costa Rica, there are numerous activities that the traveler may have on his or her checklist of things to do. Maybe embark on a safari in the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Tour guides can point out all the animal and plant life of this beautiful rainforest, or offer a bird’s eye view of the forest with a canopy tour complete with a recreational zip line for the adventurous soul. A possible trip to the Poas Volcano National Park is always a great reason for travel.

Published in innkeeper

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