Tuesday, February 07, 2006

The Central Issue

I'm preparing to embark on what I hope will be a real adventure.

Following one month in Mexico, getting my tongue around the language and no doubt learning to curse like a streetkid, I'll be heading to Guatemala. There, I'll extradite my potty mouth, and make my way through Central America with a small group, hiking volcanoes as often as possible to justify bringing my boots at all. I will mistake Howler monkeys for Jaguars, as I hear most tourists do. Most significantly, I will overcome my semi-paralyzing fear of heights in the cloud forest canopy---on suspension bridges. I am hoping the view will pacify me. I might cry. That's OK.

I suspect the real challenge might begin when I find myself in Cost Rica. Alone. I will look back at the highways, the mountains, broken down buses, boats and cold-water-no-water guest houses that I just came from, and do it all over again. Me. Alone this time. I will already know the sound of the Howlers. I will know where the bus stations are in Nicaragua.

Or, maybe the hardest part of the trip will be boarding the plane to return to Canada. I guess we'll see.

Even though my looming birthday serves as a reminder that my "Twenties" are coming to a close, I have one favour to ask of you: Please. Please don't tell my mom.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Mo(u)rning coffee

I would sit here at my wooden desk with papers strewn as I am right now, sipping coffee from my grandmother's cup, the hand-potted one with the purple thistle painted on the side. The lamp in the corner glows yellowish, creating a little warmth in my chilly apartment. Outside there is freezing rain, and the light from the window is blue. It arrives as foggy clusters rather than rays. I've finished my toast and am beginning to come to terms with leaving my home this morning, as I do every morning I don't sleep through.

I would write a more complete and insightful entry in my journal. Probably one of the story lines I've mentally drafted while walking to and from the metro station each morning (meeting all the same faces in either direction). Maybe the one that moved me to tears, causing passers-by to think I'd had a really rough day at the office.

It's cloudy at 9:15 a.m. and I am already supposed to be at work, were it a regular day. Having given my notice of resignation weeks ago, I'm anxious for my last day to arrive. I remember praying for a nine-to-five job, and now, I don't want it anymore. No wonder the powers that be ignore my requests sometimes. I imagine them rolling their gargantuan eyes.

In a few moments, I'll publish this post and fix my hair. I'll brush my teeth, and make my way to the doctor's office and then the bank. Then, I'll go to work, thankful for the respite from routine.

And, thank you for the coffee date.