Does anyone sleep well, the night before a trip? Even after a few of them, not me. Then startle awake with the thought of “okay, the day is here.” Those other ones were still night, but this time the alarm has certified it’s here. The day that was just a click on an airline website some weeks ago, a date cited when people asked, a number that was theoretical right up until you woke to find it all around you, impatient to happen. Unwilling to wait. Impossible to back up.
So now I’m at the airport. My lady love’s flight just boarded, flying somewhere else, the back home I will see again, but not where my pilot is pointed. Then I took the long walk down the corridor from domestic to international, the way I so very want to take, am deeply glad for, but that doesn’t erase the ripping sadness of goodbyes. Those don’t get easier either.
But I know that soon the other feelings will rise in me. The topped up battery of travel enthusiasm. The curiosity of what it’s going to be like. The hotel I picked because it has an airport transfer doesn’t appear to actually have it, so I will be flung to the taxista hyenas a little before midnight tomorrow night, on the other side of the world, eleven time zones away.
This first flight, the one coming close, will take me from Oregon to Amsterdam. Flying to Holland is a familiar and well loved route, but this time when I arrive grainy eyed and surreal with past-sleepiness, I’ll be a bit short of halfway. Three hours layover, desperately soaking up every Dutch word I can hear, then I’ll board again.
Nairobi. Kenya. They’re known words that are about to gain remembered images and memories. I’ll be in Kenya just under three weeks and have only a sketch of a plan. My first couple nights are booked, then I’m going to go looking for the Call to Prayer, the Indian Ocean, the blend of cultures and centuries, to let fade the preconceptions and stereotypes in favor of my own experiences.
Travel is a privilege, travel is a gift, one of the greater of both, and I enjoy sharing it here. If there’s internet and time and electricity, I’ll do that. Or maybe I’ll meet you out here somewhere. Whatever roads you’re following, happy 2019 and happy travels!
Happy and safe travels Tim!!! Give us a call next time you come to Portland….we would love to buy you a beer!!! Ron and Char
I would love that! Will do. I’ll pass through briefly in a little over a week, but just for a few (very jet-lagged) hours. But next time!
Enjoy Kenya. Nine years ago we had three months there.
Whenever I’m somewhere interesting like this I half expect to see you two come around a corner. I watch for a guy walking with his hands behind his back. 😉
How wonderful. I love Kenya. And I hope you make it to Lamu Island. The only place in the world I’ve ever returned to. It is a magical place. And if you want pampering, visit Paul and Christina at Subira House. Wherever your feet take you, enjoy your time in what is most probably one of my most favourite countries in the whole wide world. Happy travels.
I’m heading out there today! I’m looking forward to it, and not just because I spent the last three days with a substantial case of food poisoning. Travel fun! 😉
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Oh dear! Hope Lamu is the perfect antidote.
It was absolutely magnificent. I don’t think I’ve ever stayed longer than three, maybe four nights in one place while traveling, but six nights in Lamu was easy as pie and time well spent.
Hope all is well with you Tim!!! Be safe!!!
Char and Ron Holmgren
More than well! And luckily I felt safe every moment of the trip. Right up until I was on US freeways again. Hope all’s well in Portland!