Sunday, March 21, 2010
The travel agent takes us into her gaze, a moment away from finishing the paperwork for a Spring Break get-away to a giddy twenty-something couple. Translation: I have better things to do on a Saturday night. And we too, had plans. To waste her time, asking question after question about good travel deals.
Her lack of attention pushes us toward the surrounding walls. Rob and I browse through the towering brochures, displayed floor to ceiling, as the covers beckon us to other worlds.
Exiting quickly. Laughing ourselves silly on the street. Driving home and splaying the publications across the floor.
Confronted with so many choices: villas in Tuscany, estates in Normandy, spices in Tunisia, music in the streets of Barcelona, hiking in the hills of Ulster. Making the pilgrimage to mosques and temples and churches in the Holy Land.
The travel photos are selling dreams come true. What’s your pleasure? Yoga? Gardens? History? Art? Food? Wine? Music? Romance? Enlightenment? The world awaits.
I'm paralyzed by choice.
Travel by land: on foot, bicycle, car or coach. Floating: on a rented barge, a chartered sailboat, a luxury cruise, an intimate riverboat.
Catching a glimpse of the Great Wall of China, Ramses’ Tomb, Stonehenge, the Leaning Tower of Pisa... zooming in with Google Earth, these visits are easier than ever to tick off the list.
I want more than just the bragging rights, I want more than to stick a pin in a map and say I’ve been there, done that.
I know. I want the impossible: to go to all these places, to be everywhere, all at once. Embodying each eternal moment.
‘Now’ is somewhere else, waiting just around the corner, in some distant promised land.