A Stone's Throw

practice your aim. you never know when you'll spy 2 birds at once.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Welcome to South America

I should have known something was amiss when I walked down the tarmac in the rain to a plane that had magazines piled high in the cockpit and operated by two guys that looked like they snuck onto the plane on a dare by thier fraternity. I should have had a clue when the greasy haired teenager closed the door. There's something tremendously ominous about being the only passenger on a plane.

Sometimes events occur that help solidify the difference between good and bad. Other times it identifies the bad from the horrible. And then even other times you could experience the morning I had on the first day in South America.

I was robbed blind. While looking for a place to stay in Lima, Peru, a bustling metropolis of 9 million, the car I was traveling in was torn open and the contents gutted in a span of 3 minutes. And that means everything I had. There's no greater feeling of panic than when everything you own disappears.

The police refused to come to the scene so I was forced with empty hands to make my way to the station, which resembled more a parkinglot and a gymnasium than a bastion of law enforcement. The officer(I assume, but doubt) proceded to write down the event in a small paper booklet than looked to have been found on the street. During this he boldly hinted the only way I was going to get anything back was by bribing the police to find the thieves.

Needless to say, I decided against the bribing because as bad as my plight may be, at least I am not in a dark Peruian prison for attempting to bribe the police. They're all in on it here, and there's little to be done.

I began making a list of everything I had lost, but it became a sorry thankless, nearly pointless task, so I gave it up. Among the choice items was my laptop and my return tickets home(which so far, the airlines are not allowing me reissued tickets or etickets). Yes, you can imagine my own anger. What really angered me though was all the bloody planning that went into packing. I don't mean to jest but a can opener is hard to find down here, just ask Ken. I had to bribe security officials at two airports to let me keep it. And now some 5 foot kid is looking at it in some dank apartment wondering what it is as he reformats my harddrive.

Oh, and I am sick. I dont know what it is, could be anything. I started browsing through the list of the symptoms crossreferenced with the ailments, and I discovered I could have anything from Cholera to Malaria. In a place where the Plague still exists you keep your options wide open.

So, as far as beginings of adventures go, you could say this one has been frought with a dark welcome. But, carry on, I say. The beer is cheap, the sky blue, and I'm not looking at the inside of a box six feet under just yet.

Without a return ticket home, nor a bag on my back, the South American adventure has begun...

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Southward Bound

Been a bit since I've posted. Took some time off to visit my folks for the holidays and some down time. But now, it is at arms! The traveling is begun anew!

Yet the holidays were wonderful. I took the opportunity to do a lot of new writing as well as a lot of transcribing from the hundreds of pages I collected while on the road. Transcribing's a bear, but my typing speed is up and I get to edit as I go.

Lets see, other things:

- The digital camera I had that broke in Rome - hopefully fixed soon. Draggin disposable cameras around is expensive and a pain.

- Been updating pictures to the blog. So if you've been wanting other media than boring words, salute.

- For those of you who are stuck in the wintery north, I will be posting great deals I find for traveling for you all. I don't care if you go anywhere, mind you, just no complaints that the deals aren't there. :)

More later...

- C