Sorry peeps. Suffering blog apathy and major mental blocks. Mowing and weeding are looking more palatable than sitting down to write.
As I was leafing through the photo albums, trying to jog some suppressed memories to the surface, I noted that I have a lot of pics with my middle finger in the air or a get-away-you-dumb-MF-and-let-me-wallow-in-my-misery type face. Why do you think people loved traveling with me so much? You'd think it was my sparkling personality, but really it was my willingness to slam my hand against the side of a pick-up truck and yell at shifty drivers that I'd just overpaid to haul my ass from point A to point B while sitting under a faded UN tarp in the rain.
(*Disclaimer: These pics are OLD. Alice has since borne a few kids and eaten her weight in Hershey Bars. Alice is roughly double the size you see in the pictures now.*)
(* Just read a comment and thought I'd catch my new readers up - I taught math in Kenya for two years with the Peace Corps. Got around a bit while I was there and afterwards.*)
Case 1: Alice riding bike in Kakamega, Kenya
My dear friend Chris lived in western Kenya near the very lush Kakamega rainforest and took me on an outing with another volunteer (pictured below). Riding bikes through a rainforest sounds exciting and lovely, doesn't it?
In fact, not so much. Look closely at the road in the picture above. That is mud. When you ride a bike through mud, your tires sink, you slide off the road if there is ANY sort of inclination and instead of a ride-through-the-rainforest, you end up pushing-a-bike-through-the-rainforest. It was middle-finger worthy.
Case 2: Alice waiting for matatu in I-have-no-idea-where-I-am, Kenya
(*clicking the matatu link above will fill you in on what they are*)
I'd love to be able to give you a more exact location, but Chris, Rena and I had gotten dropped at this particular location with the assurance that another matatu would come along, headed in the direction we need to get to. I know that you think the picture below doesn't look so bad. It's green with trees and it could be worse. It was.
(*side note - how could any man not want me when I wore the purple sack with sneakers?*)
Here is Chris in the middle of the road watching the incoming grey clouds.
No vehicle had passed us in over three hours.
The mystery matatu came as night and rain began to fall. It gave new meaning to the term "seething, stinking mass of humanity". But you know... the seething, stinking mass of humanity was preferable to dark, wet and outside alone.
Case 3: Alice waiting for lift in Sinai, Egypt
Mt. Sinai to the coast anyone? Hello? Bueller? Sitting in the middle of the desert was more boring than it may appear. I'm sure this picture was taken at a distance because I was gnashing teeth at folks who got too close.
I mastered this position as you'll see in the next photo too.
Case 4: Alice on train in Egypt
This is the look of a gal who had a ticket with a seat assignment until her two friends decided to jump the earlier train from Alexandria to Cairo.
By jumping the earlier train, you can see for yourself where Alice's seat assignment ended up. I still can't imagine how I didn't get my middle finger up in time for that shot.
Case 5: Rena at Bwindi Inpenetrable Forest, Uganda
OK - this isn't me, but Rena was one of my bestest travel companions and since I love her so much and managed to cheese her off more often than not, I thought I'd include my favorite picture of her. I can almost hear Rena now - "Get the hell away from me you immature dopes and let me soak my feet in peace." I'm pretty sure she was giving me the mental finger.
*BONUS PIC - JUST ADDED*Sorry - last minute addition. I'm guessing that Joey's finger is saying - "Why Alice... I'm busy washing my clothes in your scary, black bathing room where I've been hunched over scrubbing out my underwear and socks for many minutes."
She was a fool. Life was easier if you never wore socks or underwear.