scared thrilled scared thrill scared thrilled

I find most things in life both scary and thrilling. I suppose I should hope it's always this way, but sometimes it feels like an awful lot of work.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Leaving Africa

After three intense and unforgettable months I am leaving Africa. Tonight I'll take Royal Air Maroc, leaving at 2:40am, to Cassablanca and from there to Paris.

This is a big continent. I've fairly sprinted through nine (10 if you're counting Western Sahara) of its 54 countries. This is not a subtle continent and there are few private corners to it. It is overwhelming to all the senses and pretty much every adjective I know in the English language could probably be used to describe something on this trip.

I came to Africa to do some losing and some finding. It has been directed wandering. The most dangerous and frightening spaces have been the insides of my own heart and head. Africa has served as a physical backdrop for existential exploration. It's a dubious luxury, all this time for stewing, and I am a bit worn out from the experience. I have left no emotional stone unturned, at least of the ones that I've found. I can only hope this translates into a total and thorough experience of losing and of finding too.

At this point the world is open to me in a way I have never before known. I leave Africa tonight different than when I arrived. And I return to a world that is different too. Sorry for the vaguaries...

For now, my time at the cybercafe is up. I'm going to go buy an empty liquour bottle filled with roasted peanuts for the trip. Then I'm going to go home and eat all the fruit I bought before I get back to Europe and can no longer afford such luxuries.


At 12:25 PM, Anonymous Josh said...

Hey Shmartin, you made it! That much fruit, however, before an international flight may contribute considerably to the "losing" aspect of the trip. A simple attempt to be less wasteful can lead fellow flyers to the impression you have become a member of the "mile high" club by your frequency (both audible and time-wise). Hopefully the peanuts do their work. Hope you enjoy Peareee, can't wait to hit the surf'n'turf'n'pint with you this summer and glad the world is wide open for you (wide open for you to come sruf'n'turf'n'pint mostly though, eh?)!

At 7:31 AM, Blogger Martin Penner said...

in fact, i ate too much fruit.

surf'n'turf'n'pint it is. consider it a date, or many dates.

At 10:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

guano on the roof, shit on your face, cutting off your toes, that's how it goes.

As for thinking and drinking, well too much of either can permanently leave you bent.

You're okay, You'll be okay.

At 1:34 AM, Blogger Martin Penner said...

these are some excellent points. I think it may be time to relax a little bit. I went to see Iron Man last night... that's a start right?


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