Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Going Overseas in 18 days

I’ve just looked at the calendar, we go overseas in 18 days. I smell bread and I taste croissants and butter and raspberry jam, and those little Aranciata soft drink bottles, sitting at a small table on a terrace, or sitting amongst many tables outside a cafe. Oh, and coffee. Lots of strong coffee. (I think that is from being from Melbourne and not so much to do with Europe.) I’m going to the Himalayas. I see wondrous mountain peaks. I see adventure. I see accomplishment. Oh… euw… I see dead bodies frozen in the ice. Ha ha, who am I kidding about my adventure threshold? Oh, and coffee. Lots of strong coffee…

Fucken hell I have done nothing, was my next thought.

Well, we have plane tickets, confirmed seats and current passports. All of the accommodation is booked. All internal air flights, on Dodgy Brothers Air, have been purchased. Tickets have been purchased for some iconic attractions in various cities. (Apparently, every big ticket European must-see is seething with people now a days. Oh, the pain) All we have to do is buy 2 train tickets, Rome to Florence, Florence to Verona and we have to book the Eurostar, Paris to London (Sam tells me that’s done). That is a hell a lot more than I have ever done for previous trips.

Don’t you worry, Sam would have a timetabled schedule, if I let him. (I’m sure there are going to be moments when I wished I’d let him)

Of course, there is a problematic election in France. (The alt-right tragedy that it may become) There are terrorist attacks being committed in Europe, not to mention the threat of nuclear war with North Korea. (what is it, 3 months into the job, and Tiny Hands has us on the brink of nuclear war. Who said this presidency was going to be a problem? Remember, this is a man who fails more often than he succeeds, in everything he has done in life. You just can’t go bankrupt from a nuclear war… [muttered] Little Dick) Oh yes, I can see why we’d be adventuring overseas right about now.

I haven’t travelled for a while… so, get ready, I have 18 days, the starters flag has now been waved. Erh! I’ll probably pack the night before and swish onto that plane with the minimum of stress. Yay, flying. I love to fly. Wallets? Tickets? Passports? A couple of t-shirts, a pair of jeans, a pair of shorts. A jacket. A second pair of shoes. Laptop, phone and cables. Packed. How hard do you want to make it?

I got over my fear of flying many years ago. I used to drive up to Bolago on Friday nights fast, because I just wanted to get there. I used to drive along those narrow country roads late at night at 120, 130, 140 kph and never think twice about it. And flying is much safer than driving. Anything could have fallen/jumped/blown/whatever, and I never gave it a second thought. So, I chose not to be scared of flying anymore and I haven’t been. But with all the recent trouble in the world, I can feel it creeping back in.

Rachel was heading to Japan with a girlfriend, her youngest daughter, Oreya, and her boyfriend, Thumper. (Oh, I can’t remember his name, but he was a big, and boof, as David would say. I guess Thumper gives a negative connotation now a days. So, conservatives, this is how it is done. He shall be known hence forth as BamBam… er? Slugger. No. Chook. That is how political correctness works. Think of it as being polite to somebody else. See, it’s easy. Nothing to be scared of) Oreya had a panic attack at the plane entrance.

“Yes, we were THOSE people,” said Rachel.

No matter what they did, Oreya freaked out. Her biggest fear seemed to be not being able to get off, had she wanted to. It was a direct flight. Oreya had to stay home, so Damo (I’m just trying it out) stayed home with her. What a guy. (They have since broken up)

“Then, of course, they had to take the bags off, unaccompanied baggage and all that, which took another hour,” said Rachel. “We got looks, sweetie.”

I will be thinking of Oreya when I get on that plane in 18 days, don’t you worry about that. Shiver. And maybe, “NO, NO, YOU CAN’T MAKE!” with me clinging to those blunt edges of the front door surround, will probably flash through my mind, as I pass over the aerodynamic hearth. I’ll chuckle quietly to myself and smile.

Sam will say, “What?”
“Oh nothing,” I’ll say. “Where are our seats?”

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