Despite having enjoyed my shortest vacation season since arriving in Spain six years ago, this summer I was fortunate enough to visit three of the Balearic Islands (Ibiza, Formentera, and Mallorca), Bethany Beach (Delaware), and Washington, DC (including my hometown, Potomac, Maryland). And I did so in just seven work days and a short weekend getaway. Here are my brief reflections on the Balearic Islands, beaches and their beauty …
Monthly Archives: August 2006
On Wednesday, August 30, 2006, Naguib Mahfouz died at age 94. (Read The Economist’s obituary). Mahfouz won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1988. His Cairo Trilogy (Palace Walk, Palace of Desire, and Sugar Street) was one of my most enjoyable reads in the past few years. I had written a previous post on Mahfouz earlier this year. If you are interested in 20th Century Egypt or simply want to read a great entertaining saga, I highly recommend the Trilogy.
If our childhood fears and nightmares of snakes (and even sharks or pirañas) weren’t enough, it appears that venomous fish outnumber snakes. Yes, you heard me correctly. There are enough poisonous fishies out there in lakes, rivers, seas, and oceans to produce a whole new series of horror films to terrify the young. Luckily most of them swim in tropical waters where people have more important tribulations than worrying about malevolent aquatic life. Here is the article that explains it all:
In an effort to expand my digressions towards other horizons, I have just published this brief piece on Europe’s failure to react to the crisis in the Lebanon in the Safe Democracy Foundation’s Democracy Forum, an online repository of political analysis regarding the state of global democracy. Notice that I am more interested in the use of words to develop a feel and argument than I am in the actual validity of the argument itself. Can you say, “legal training”? You can also read the piece in Spanish if you prefer. Safe Democracy is managed by my friend, Joaquín Mirkin. Can you say, “enchufe”?
In my fist blog entry, I digressed on travel distances. Now upon returning from a brief trip home, I recall one of the first books that enthralled my youth, Walk the World’s Rim. Essentially, this story argued that as many times as one traverses the world’s rim, one never truly returns to the same point from which one has disembarked. Nevertheless, my experience of round trips, coming and going, from Madrid to Washington, DC over the past six years is better expressed by the pains of jet lag than any other allusion.
On September 9th, I will have my 6th anniversary of arriving in Madrid. What I have learned is that the jet lag I suffer is exponentially more intense in relation to what I leave behind rather than the actual distance or time of travel. Allow me to explain . . .
Last night I ran into my old, old childhood friend, Pete. He reminded me of something that happened when we were young. Unfortunately, we couldn’t quite remember how the story went. Basically, Pete and his buddy Repete were sitting in a tree. Pete fell down and one of them was left. To see who was left click here.
Para irme acostumbrando a volver a un espacio vaciado de todos mis ex-compañeros salvo a Natalia la Regulator, me dedico a Fonear desde el jardín. Aquí se ven flores en vez de barbudos vestidos de negro bajo la insignia FONopáticos y se oyen pájaros en lugar de risas foneras. Aquí hay WiFi, pero no se comparte aún. Hasta que no salga la Fonera ni el Liberator, mis padres prefieren esperar a hacer la inversión de $5. Es que mi madre no aguanta la lentitud de bajarse archivos. Pero bajarme la comida al jardín sí que es rápido y se almuerza sin cajas.
Entre el ruido de las olas, oigo a lo lejos las protestas de Natalia, el “decidételo tú” de Diego, el cantar de Asun, las indirectas directas de Edu, el “ya no me quieres” de Mayte, la chulería madrileña de Natasha, las pilas de Duracell, el sin fin reactivo, el silencio de Berga, y la ausencia de Matías. Pero aquí hay solidaridad. Aquí hay WiFi. Menos mal que cuando vuelva habrá redistribución de los espacios en la ofi.