Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Where To Go From Here?


I’ve been in all these Southern United States and nearly forgot one trip to Wisconsin when a small child. Other than the sunflowers, I don’t remember much as I slept my way through three other states. I will never forget the sunflowers but could not say if they were in Iowa or Illinois. Regardless, I’ve never seen so many in my life. I disctinctly remember listening to Neil Diamond on the radio singing some song blue and Donna Fargo (or was it Tanya Tucker?) pop her foot in the whole USA.

I’ve made a couple of trips out of the states: the Grand Cayman islands (just as they were beginning the tourist boom about thirty years ago) and Africa.

Airport agencies today add so much quality to the overall travel experience, one find difficulty deciding where to go by plane. Getting fire-hosed by CNN or Fox News or Headline News at each gate makes my confidence soar while waiting for flights, catching up on the latest in terrorism. Thank you, Dallas, for not choosing the Big Brother décor; ; however, since your passengers are disinclined to be distracted by the looping headlines, simple communication with your passengers regarding small things like oh, I dunno, maybe flight delays--would be copacetic. I met one fellow in Dallas who after a short time had me convinced by his accent he was South African. Turns out he was English and lived in Texas so long he sounded Australian. He does a better South African, but what do I know? The short time we talked our flight had been delayed without the smallest interruption by so much as speaker static.

My list of travel options is clearly marked with a burn, the scorch of the Ponderosa marks the place where “trains” should be found. Trains are not on my list. Now, the “Cinders and Smoke” coal-fueled steam engine tour dragging tourists from Durango to Silverton is a worthy venture, but this is not quite travel. No, nothing compares to the Amtrack disaster of 1985. You won’t find this one in the headlines, but it was enough to make this globe-hopper reconsider the tracks as an option for travel. The overnighter to LA was agreeable (truthfully, the whole trip could have gone un-gone), but the overnighter back as exciting as an arrow in the knee (that’s right, I said it). Long story short: I spent the night in the baggage compartment with a throwing-up slimsey jackaroo visiting from Down Under. Oh, no! That’s not the bad part. The bad part was Coach and that’s all you need to know.

My wife grew up in bus station. Her father operated the Trailways bus depot in Gallup, New Mexico for more than 20 years. My dad sent me down to the Trailways station once to send a package (for some reason, the bus went where UPS could not—probably the standard desert distances as those found in New Mexico and Arizona put the address outside the UPS route). This was the first time I met my future father-in-law. Neither of us had the foresight that such a relationship was on our schedule at the time. My wife may not be bothered if the bus was travel option (I’m not going to volunteer it) though I am confident she may find another mode of transportation, should one be required.

This may sound strange, but I can’t think of a better place I would like to visit than “home.” I miss our town. Then we can go to Tristan Da Cahuna or the Polynesian Islands, ok sweetie?

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