Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Word of the Day: Wanderlust

Okay, Blogger is giving me fits again, so instead of your regularly scheduled photo essay of dubious interest comes a short little essay of indubitable DISinterest on the subject of Erica needing to leave the country STAT. We apologize for the inconvenience and are dutifully looking for someone to strangle or, you know, SOLVE THE FREAKING PROBLEM with Blogger's image uploader. Thank you for your patience.

I've got a real bad case of the PDSDs (Passport Disuse Stress Disorder). I've wandered the INTERWEB looking for destinations willynilly. I've focused on one particular destination and hashed and rehashed financing schemes. I've stared at hotel websites. Yes, you read that right. I am cracking up over here. LOSIN' IT!

Bee and I were discussing this today on the phone, and it made me feel better. She, too, has been making international journeys, even alone in her teens like me, and misses them. Sure, we both came from unmoneyed middle-classers, but we managed to eke out cultural experiences that most kids our age would have avoided had their families been able to afford them in the first place. International cultures, languages, and foods were an everyday part of life and were encouraged, even in her white-bread Indiana family. My family drank and ate weird things all the time, and I grew to realize they were a part of me, not just of my home melee. And now I miss them like all get out.

It seems like so many Americans could not care less about the rest of the world. I cannot sit at home anymore. There are coffees I've never tried in cafes all over the world. There are local greetings I've never witnessed. There's local dress and dance and food and music I've never experienced and it makes me feel . . . well what? Wanderlust is the only term I can conjure - "A very strong or irresistible impulse to travel." It makes me want to dust off my passport and go far, far away.

Of course CharlesPierce handed me The Best American Travel Writing 2000 and 2002 before we left his house a few weeks ago. Remember "Don't feed the bears?" Well, "DON'T FEED THE WANDERLUST!" Now I have to add Cuba, Northern Australia, and Bhutan to the list, thank you very much! And I'm only halfway through the first one, so things are looking good for my Achievable Goals List.

Argentina is chief on the list of Places To Go, and the ache to see it, taste it, hear it, and smell it - oh, that smell - has been a literal ache today. I'm going to look around at real, actual, non-imaginary options for a trip perhaps sometime next year. I've called my genius traveling uncle and aunt for help. I'm trolling the web. I'm going to be put together projected price and itinerary. I'm going to make the ache just as unbearable as possible, and hopefully, I'll finally get to assuage some of that wanderlust before I die of it.

Maybe by then, Blogger will have fixed its image uploader.


Graceful Peaceful German Fischer said...

Just go.

Amass some sort of fundage, and go.

Pick off season for the area. Combine flight and hotel. Do hostels! Eat at cafes instead of restaurants. Impugn on foreign friends. There are some many ways - just go ...

Because you CAN.

Kokanut said...

I hope you go!!!

(And wanderlust is one of my top five fave words. Thanks for using it.)

Bee said...

You know, I never realized that there was a word that so perfectly described this feeling, itch, urge. Wanderlust, what an AWESOME word. Thanks for the education!

You know my opinion on the subject. Do it! And do it STAT! You obviously miss Argentina already, and trust me, better to go now when you simply miss it, then wait until it is literally all you can think about. GO!!