July 2004 Archives

Iraq becomes personal

Moments ago, I found out that one of my friends has volunteered to go fight in Iraq. He is an Army Medic and will be fighting on the "front lines." I have never felt more like one of those fluttery women in old westerns. I want to say something that will make him safe, and I can't. I can't make him stay, and I wouldn't want him to, really. He feels it's his duty to help his fellow soldiers and I can't disagree, because in his position I would feel the same way. But now I'm really, really mad at Bush. Whether or not the war is justified, the way we went to it was not, and that carelessness is a large part of why it's going on so long and why my friend now has to go. So yeah, really really mad. And scared. For my friend.

Quito, Ecuador

I've been writing all sorts of things to tell you in this funny child's composition notebook I have all week, but I left it in the hotel room and nothing is really finished anyway. But I felt like with all the internet access around, I had to post something.

Estoy en Ecuador hace una semana y ya est� my espa�ol amejorando. Estoy pensando en espa�ol muchas veces, pero no puedo recordar ni bastante vocabulario, ni el pret�rito de los verbos irr�gulares. Eso le hace muy dif�cil. Toda la m�sica es de las noventas. Las canciones de Counting Crows no son malos, pero Chumbawumba es.

Ironic facts about the world:
1. There is not a single copy of Origin of Species for sale in the entire archipelago of Galapagos; not even at the Charles Darwin Research Center.
2. In the middle of all the Counting Crows and 90's songs they are playing in this caf�, they have suddenly tossed up "Strawberry Fields." !Viven los Beatles!
3. Ecuador switched from its own currency to the US dollar to curb its 400% inflation rate, but has still lost 3 of its 16 million inhabitants, mostly the richest, to Spain because of the economy.

International travel is composed of transient facts like these, so trivial they will pass away practically before anyone notices them--that is anyone whose life they are not bound up in. As much as one may claim that traveling is about seeing important buildings and learning about a culture, it's really a matter of living on the surface detritus of facts like these.

Tomorrow I go to Lima.

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This page is an archive of entries from July 2004 listed from newest to oldest.

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