Amma & Anna came back from Iceland, where they went to see the guys from Buena Vista Social Club play a concert. Their trip was the natural culmination of Anna's obsession w/ Cuban music and his newfound Spanish skills. It started a few years ago, I forget how. My dad is like me in that when he gets obsessed with something he can't stop talking about it. He talks in Spanish most of the time now, which is driving my mom nuts. She'll ask him a question and he'll answer in Spanish and she'll give him a dirty look. It's kinda funny to watch. No comprendo nada con mi espanol de high school, so I tend to just nod a lot and say bueno. I think it's actually improved communication between us.
Whilst in Iceland they stayed at the same hotel as the band, and ate at the same buffet. I wish I could have been there to see Anna chatting with the Buena Vistites... actually I wish I could go back, period. I looked at old Rekj. pictures today-- dormant volcanos, hailstorms. The lighter I stole from the airport is almost out of fluid. It says "Iceland, Jewel of the North." I get that familiar yearning, to go to sleep in an unfamiliar territory & wake up in a mysterious new world. I used to caption everything. e.g. I wasn't just washing the dishes, I was "washing the dishes in London." in Nice, in Mangalore, in wherever isn't here... those last two words make all the difference.
My brother graduates this weekend, so I'm off to Houston for that. He's going to Casablanca for a month to work some kind of energy job. I had to look up Casablanca on a map-- it's south of Spain, Northern Africa. Near Algeria (which all who know me have heard me speak about at length, as one of the world's most dangerous places-- massive danger to tourists, not that anybody would be stupid enough to go). For those who don't know me, one of my obsessions is a book called The World's Most Dangerous Places, by Robert Young Pelton. It's like a lonely planet guidebook, but for all the places on earth where lonely planet readers would never dare set foot. Pelton has a great sense of humor and he doesn't seem to go to places with all of the standard preconceptions Westerners usually have (e.g. he isn't brainwashed or naive). I recommend TWMDP if you want to learn more about human rights situations all over the world & how things got so messed up. There's also a big section on what you can do to help.
(Some suggestions-- join a campaign to ban landmines; lobby your congressman/senator to shut down the School of Americas; support the Clean Diamonds Act currently wending its way through Senate/Congress)
I'm too tired to preach. Is there anything to remember about today. Finally sent Allison her birthday card & cd. Still haven't figured out what to buy AJ for graduation. Claudine was muttering "P diddy" today. Houston's going to be hot as a mofo. When I close my eyes I can't see anything from today. Tomorrow look closer.