Why This Is Not A Travel Blog

Daily Prompt: There’s No Place Like Home

If you had the opportunity to live a nomadic life, traveling from place to place, would you do it? Do you need a home base? What makes a place “home” to you?

Cover of "Leaving Home"

Cover of Leaving Home

The best nomadic life blog I’ve been fortunate enough to stumble across here in the blogging world is Adventures in Wonderland where Alison and Don chronicle their travels around the world.  I read it faithfully.  I love to see their amazing pictures, and learn things about the places they’ve been and the wonders they’ve seen.   If I had the opportunity to live a life like that, would I do it?

I’m not remotely brave enough to even consider it.  Preparing for a ten day guided tour took me a year and gave me anxiety attacks.  I’m glad I went, but what is up with all the stress involved for me when it comes to travelling?

Here are some true travel facts about me, to prove that I am not descended from nomads.

1.  I will never figure out how to pack a suitcase that doesn’t contain at least a dozen completely useless things that I should have left at home.  I need a separate bag for “just in case” items.  I go away for a weekend and it looks like I’m leaving home for good.

2.  When I was little I suffered from motion sickness.  I threw up in cars, even on short trips.   I can now ride in a back seat or on a bus or even a bumpy plane without a paper sack in front of my face – good news for my travel companions.  But that uneasy childhood feeling of dread before leaving on a trip has never left me.

3.  I am uncomfortable in strange places, strange climates, strange beds.

4.  I don’t like or trust strangers.  Because – they’re strangers.  Ergo, they must be strange.

5.  Foreign languages and accents baffle me. In my ears, even the English language can sometimes sound mysterious as hell.

6.  I don’t like to make decisions.  If we are at some crossroad and you are waiting for me to say which way we should go next, I hope you packed a lunch because we could be sitting here for a very long time.

A contemporary Tibetan nomadic tent near Namts...

A contemporary Tibetan nomadic tent near Namtso lake. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yes, I need a home base.  The best part of going somewhere for me is always the part where I’m heading home.  Home is where things are ordinary and familiar and mine.  Where I can make a huge mess and the only person who gets annoyed about it is me. Where the water doesn’t do weird things to my hair, and the soap doesn’t irritate my skin.  Where the food is easily identifiable and misplacing my passport is not a major worry.  Where recharging things doesn’t require complicated adapters and a brain.

Now for any of you few select lucky people reading this who are suddenly sceptical about this trip to Greece I’ve said I will make with you next year, don’t worry.  I take instructions really well.  If you say we are having fun, I will believe you and behave accordingly.  Tell me we are going shopping and I will follow you anywhere.  And I love to take pictures.  So I’m probably not the worst travel companion on earth.  I hope you feel reassured.

I know home is not simply one specific place, it’s a feeling of belonging and love and comfort, and I admire the nomadic people who are on an extraordinary adventure, and who can be at home no matter where they are.  They are amazing.  Travel and adventure-wise, they are the opposite of me.

Stuff Worth Saving

In my filing cabinet where I keep records of paid bills and income tax and bank statements and other boring and mundane but necessary stuff, one of the folders has the label “Stuff Worth Saving”.  My e-mail also has a folder with the same name.  So do my “pictures” and “documents” on my computer .  This is the laziest way I know of to never have to mull over and make a decision about how to categorize something interesting.  Just dump it in the stuff worth saving file.  Well today I’m taking a few things out of the file and sharing them.  Because if they’re worth saving, they should also be worth sharing.
aging zen to zany

♥♥♥♥after awhile

♥♥♥♥

be kind♥♥♥♥

smiles

I hope these made you smile. 🙂

Good Intentions

The Impassioned Singer

The Impassioned Singer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

He runs a ring around the rest of them, always ending up at center stage;  intense, melodramatic, passionate, extreme.

They pour cold water on his ambitions,

believing they can save him from himself.

*****

Trifecta Challenge: This weekend we are giving you three words and asking for you to give us back another thirty of your own, making a grand total of thirty-three words.  Your words to work with are:  ring, water, stage.

trifecta button

Ostranenie Seventeen

Project 365 #190: 090710 Hairy Yellow Pig

Prompts for the Promptless Ostranenie is a Russian word meaning, roughly, “defamiliarization”.  It is the artistic technique of encouraging audiences to see common things as strange, wild, or unfamiliar in order to enhance perception of the familiar.

If you were asked to contemplate the number seventeen, to focus on it non stop for hours in order to enhance your perception of it, would you eventually come up with something strange, wild and unfamiliar?  Even if you don’t happen to be a gifted mathematician?  Would you bore yourself to sleep?  Give yourself a colossal headache? Maybe lose your mind?

Princeton University students Michael Spivak and David Kelly were assigned this task in the 1960’s.  Their list of interesting properties of the number 17 somehow came to include a yellow pig with seventeen eyelashes.  This is why mathematicians have been enthusiastically celebrating Yellow Pig Day on July 17th for several decades.

Well, hey, who are we to judge.  There’s probably not a lot of things for mathematicians to celebrate that would be interesting to the rest of us numerically challenged calculator dependant people.

The most elaborate festivities are held at HCSSiM, where the holiday has been celebrated annually for roughly 34 years. In preparation for the event, students decorate shirts (often mathematically themed) with yellow pigs on them. On Yellow Pigs Day students, staff, and visiting alumni wear these shirts. Ultimate has long been the official sport of the day, and a competitive student/alumni game is held. In recent years, origami yellow pigs have been folded.

David Kelly gives a lecture on the historical and mathematical properties of the number 17, and his impressive collection of well over 289 (17 squared) yellow pigs is on display. The celebration concludes with the singing of Yellow Pigs Day carols and the eating of a yellow pig cake. Gifts containing or consisting of yellow pigs and mathematical knick knacks featuring the manifold properties of 17 are frequently exchanged among friends.  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Samir/Yellow_Pigs_Day)

Seriously, will you ever again think of July 17th as just another hot day in July? Will you now start counting the eyelashes on pigs?  Did you even realize that pigs had eyelashes?

And what are you doing in celebration of the seventeen eyelashed yellow pig?  I hope you will think Ostranenie, and have a wildly perceptually enhanced day.

Anytime is Nap Time

Cat Nap

Cat Nap (Photo credit: dlewis5)

For a couple of days I have been under the weather with a summer cold.  Why do they always seem to be ten times worse than the colds we get in the winter?  My head is full of sawdust.  All day today it has been pouring rain, but that just gives me an extra excuse to stay inside and moan and sniffle and generally feel very sorry for myself.  I have also been taking naps.  I am embarrassed to say how many of them, so I won’t even try to calculate that.  Let’s just say over 50% of my day and leave it at that.

There’s no one around right now to care how quickly and often I fall asleep, but if there were, here’s a list of nap excuses I’d use to make myself seem less of a sleepy head, or an old grandma who nods off mid conversation.  Maybe I wouldn’t do that if the conversation was interesting, but I’d advise you not to place any bets on it anyway.

1.  I was just resting my eyes for a minute.  (My own grandma used this one a lot, and you’re right, no one believed her.)

2.  I was doing some mood lifting, by bathing my brain in the neurotransmitter serotonin.  What?  You’ve never done that?  I thought everybody did that.

3.  I was meditating.  It was very deep.

4.  Those were my deep breathing exercises and you’ve made me lose my place.  Now I’ll have to start over.

5.  Recharging my batteries. They were at less than 20%.

6.  Doing some horizontal rejuvenation maneuvers.

7.  Practicing my person in a stupor role in case I ever have to play that part in a movie.

8.  Experimenting with dream phenomenon.

9.  Catching up on my adventures in slumberland research.

10. I always close my eyes when I put my brain in neutral.  Too bad the same thing rarely happens with my mouth.

I suppose a nap by any other name is still a nap.  Power napping is supposed to be good for you – increases your creativity and intelligence – in which case I must be verging on brilliant by now.

I’d write more, but I’m feeling the need to rest my eyes again.  I was a cat in my last life.  I think I may consider that option again the next time around.

What Every Woman Should Have and Know

View On Black

View On Black (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

What every woman should have and know …………….

by Maya Angelou

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE  enough  money within her control to move out and rent a place of her own, even if she never wants to or needs to…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE something perfect to wear if the employer, or date of her dreams wants to see her in an hour…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE a youth she’s content to leave behind….

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE  a past juicy enough that she’s looking forward to retelling it in her old age….

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE  a set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill, and a black lace bra…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE one friend who  always makes her laugh.. and one who lets her cry…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE a good piece  of furniture not previously owned by anyone else in her family…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE eight matching plates, wine glasses with stems, and a recipe for a meal, that will make her guests feel honored…

A WOMAN SHOULD HAVE  a feeling of control over her destiny..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… how to fall in love without losing herself..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… how to quit a job,break up with a lover, and confront a friend without; ruining the friendship…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… when to try harder… and when to walk away…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… that she can’t change the length of her calves, the width of her hips, or the nature of her parents..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW... that her  childhood may not have been perfect…but it’s over…..

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… what she would and wouldn’t do for love or more…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW…. how to live alone… even if she doesn’t like it…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW.. whom she can trust,whom she can’t, and why she shouldn’t take it personally…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW… where to go…be it to her best friend’s kitchen table.. or a  charming  Inn in the woods…. when her soul needs soothing…

EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW.. What she can and can’t accomplish in a day… a month…and a year…

maya angelou