Over time we’ve lost, relievedly, the quest for illusory perfection as individuals and in partnership. We’re flawed; we wear old glasses. The functional old is as good as the shiny new; as long as you can see that clearly (as well as, you know, oncoming traffic), you’re in good shape. We’ve learned to rely on what works. Marrying is typically appreciated as a process of gain: joint commitment; two lives indefinitely summed; the amalgamation of homesteads and accumulation of material trappings. Yet, there is loss. It’s inherent to gain and equally an element of relationships, albeit less advertised.
In Nairobi a couple weeks ago for a short holiday, we decided to break out of the norm and really push ourselves, reach for our limits, embrace Mother Nature and get down and dirty. You know, rough it a bit. So naturally, we went glamping in Karen. The interior accommodations are stunning, equal parts Indiana Jones and post-colonial luxury. Oil lamps and electric space heaters; heavy wooden trunks and indoor plumbing; a simple desk with chair and lamp for scrawling inspired tales into a leather-bound journal after a long day in the bush. Also, wifi.
Over the last five or six years, my constellation has expanded, the points of light farther flung, moving ever outward. But the weight, the gravity of the galaxy remains. There is no escaping yourself. Recent chapters of my life have seen travel like I hadn’t expected, but that I embraced with the zeal of a child offered an unexpected dessert–that’s for me?!–probably undeserving but jumping at the opportunity, spoon poised for attack, in knowing haste. I’ve seen my fair share of visa-related riots, people crowded around the speaker panel, lunging towards the glass and banging with their fists, arms outstretched, frantically waving white paper visa applications like so many seagulls flitting madly around a dumpster, shouting at the tops of their lungs about trips that should have started 3 days ago, and the ineptitude of the staff and the obscene processing delays.
Hopefully when you read this, I’ll be somewhere in Kenya, fresh covfefe in one hand, bagel with cream cheese in the other, and sushi in the… other? Below are a few links to see us both through the rest of the week. Here’s to Rest & Relaxation, or getting nearer to it, anyway.
Together, we’ll make it through (Wednesday). As we go, a few links for you from around the interwebs.
After 4 years abroad, and enough inter-continental travel to warrant a few opinions, I thought I’d put together a quick list of travel favorites for long-haul trips (8+ hours, in economy class). My first goal is to share, but my second is to hear suggestions; there are always more efficient, more pleasant, and less harried ways to reach your destination.