I've been trying to decide how to write about my recent travels, and I've had several ideas.
There's the bare itinerary:
There's the David Foster Wallace "A supposedly fun thing I'll never do again"-type impressionistic summary of what I've witnessed and learned:
I have seen Thai families of four riding on a single scooter, all without helmets; I have seen a military member exclaim "I'm an American!" as a reason to allow him to let his bullet/bottle opener on a flight from Japan to Korea; I have tasted Pocari Sweat (nastier than Mountain Dew); I have listened to Korean and Japanese commentary blasted from loudspeakers hidden in trees and in the depths of caves; I have seen buddhas of gold, emerald, marble and wood; I have eaten a Seoul subway junkfood called Man Joo; I have had pizza with corn on it; I have been to markets with live eels and entire pig's heads for sale; I have proved myself a true Canadian by immediately learning how to order beer in every country I visited; I have peered briefly into Thai families huddles around TVs in shacks meters from a rail line; I have seen cockroaches bigger than any cockroach has the right to be; I have learned that Japanese schoolgirls really do dress like that; I have learned to roughly tabulate the Canadian dollar equivalent for three separate currencies; I have been served kim chee with breakfast; I know what 35 degrees Celsius feels like; I have had my toes nibbled by fish in the Gulf of Thailand; I have learned that I want to do this again.
And, of course, there are the photos (including a rare shot of yours truly.)
And that only really touches the surface. Hopefully something more coherent once the jet lag wears off.Posted by Bill Stilwell at May 07, 2003 11:30 PM