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Category: Travels

Observations while wandering near and far.

In the Wayback-Outback

The first thing to know about “indigenous” villages, if you didn’t already, is that they’re claustrophobic. And almost totally lacking in privacy — especially if you’re one of the rare foreigners to stay within their borders. The sheer Novelty of You makes you a public attraction, no matter how much everyone tries to be polite. One of the first things to know about “island paradises” is that they mostly aren’t. Islands, yes. Paradises, nope. Another thing I didn’t know about villages is how F*&&^%%ing noisy they are. OMG, OMG, OMG! My friend Lorri and I spent most of a week…

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Landed in ‘Netland

Trav’lin … Hey! I’m here. I have landed in a part of these Furrin Parts where I’ll have pretty reliable Internet for at least the next few days. I’ll soon be writing about our recent experiences in the Wayback-Outback. (Most of a week without electricity, running water, news, English, or even wheeled vehicles — oh my!) But for now, here are two observations I penned (computered?) just before leaving the local Big City for Remoteland. It’s great to be back in touch for a while. —– More Unamerican things Yet another unAmerican act observed taking place right out in public:…

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Furrin languages

(I’m now off adventuring beyond the reach of wireless. So here’s a post I wrote early-early on. I’m getting a tad more used to things now …) —– Trav’lin’ … The first thing you notice about furriners is that they speak Furrin. (Never mind that I’m now the furriner; don’t Americans always think of themselves as the center of the universe?) I’m not opposed to speaking Furrin. I’ve tried to learn to do it myself, twice. One time, I managed to get two years’ worth of straight As, become a tutor to several of my own classmates — and still…

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Pre-flight paranoia

An out-of-order post. Though you’re seeing this after I’ve “escaped,”** I’m writing it at 3:45 a.m. in the sleepless hours before my flight from the U.S. I’m at a friend’s house in the big city, connected to a network one of their zillions of neighbors left handily unsecured. —– I’m still excited about my trip, but I’ve been struck by pre-flight paranoia. It started yesterday as I packed. Deciding to take tea along, I slipped some regular old Lipton, then a few Earl Greys into a baggie. Finally, I tossed in a couple packets of my favorite treat-tea, the lovely…

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First morning

(Sending from an Internet cafe that was one difficult puppy to find. Thank heaven that on this one day we have a guide who’s showing us the sights and keeping us from stumbling into the wrong places — which in this city do abound.) —– After a chill, miserable night in the Miami airport, I was finally on my way to Parts Unknown on Friday morning. The first sign of things finally going well in a very un-American way was when the airline (based in my destination country) handed out free breakfasts. No $10 meal charge. Sure, the mealettes were…

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On my way again

After being stranded all night in the airport, I was among the first in line when the ticket counter opened this morning. Got a confirmed seat number, so I guess my stand-by status is safely removed. Zipped through TSA at 5:00 a.m., this time without a bit of patting, pawing, swabbing, or questioning, despite having a Deadly Comb in my carry-on. (They still have posters up here showing tweezers, nail clippers, and certain types of combs as “dangerous weapons”; I’m actually not sure my all-plastic comb counts among the forbidden. I thought much of that silliness had been done away…

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Passport follies

(This is another one I wrote before the trip and scheduled for posting. Didn’t think I’d have ‘Net access today, but since I’m still sitting around in airports, I do. For the moment. Oh, the adventures …) —– If all has gone well, I’ve already winged my way over an ocean. If all hasn’t gone well, I may be handcuffed in some windowless airport nook pleading, “But really, I didn’t know that tube of sun-block was four ounces. I swear I thought it said three!” Or worse, trying to prove, “No, really, I’m not that Claire Wolfe! Honest!” But who…

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Stranded

I knew I hated to travel, even aside from (and even before) the TSA made things worse. I am stranded in the Miami airport. I arrived here with — so I thought — plenty of time to board my connecting flight to Parts Unknown. But no … the online company that ticketed me set me up with “only” an hour and 45 minutes between my arrival and my scheduled departure. Turns out that I must check in two hours before the flight or no go. I had tried to check in for the international flight both online yesterday and at…

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Stranded

I knew I hated to travel, even aside from (and even before) the TSA made things worse. I am stranded in the Miami airport. I arrived here with — so I thought — plenty of time to board my connecting flight to Parts Unknown. But no … the online company that ticketed me set me up with “only” an hour and 45 minutes between my arrival and my scheduled departure. Turns out that I must check in two hours before the flight or no go. (Yes, I knew about the recommendation to arrive early at the airport very early for…

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Soros and “the ultimate bubble”

Lessee … he calls it “the ultimate bubble.” Then a couple of weeks later, George Soros doubles his gold holdings. What’s that about, I wonder? —– Writing to you from today’s first airport, where I managed to get through “security” with nothing worse than a pat-down search and a hand swabbing. And why did they choose me for a pat-down? Because the baggy Thai-style pants I was wearing had large (obviously empty) pockets. The hand swabbing, apparently, is now part of the routine. I changed from pants to skirt as soon as I got through Checkpoint Charlie. Don’t want to…

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