When I was a kid my grandpa would sing that old Canned Heat song every time we got in the car, regardless of how long the trip was really going to be. It always kind of amused me and even today I often think of him singing that song whenever I embark on some sort of journey.
I’m picking this blog up again for another adventure on an ozone-depleting jetliner (Someday I’ll figure out how to catch a ride on a trans-atlantic cargo ship so that I don’t have to feel so guilty about wasting all of that fuel.)
I’m going to Bosnia this time. That’s right. Go ahead and laugh. It is actually pretty amusing though, given the fact that I have yet to keep the promise I made to you (and the random Harvard graduate student I met on the plane from Tokyo who had lived in Japan for 10years+ and still hadn’t learned the language…) about going to Canada this year. I always dreamed of visiting tropical islands and classic destinations like the UK, central Europe, India and South America. Instead I have ended up travelling to obscure destinations of political unrest and uneventful climates. South Korea, Bosnia, what’s next, Kyrgyzstan? Perhaps. I don’t believe anymore that one must see what everyone else has seen before being able to understand the obscure or esoteric.
On this trip I have, however, managed to integrate some more popular destinations. I’ll be flying to Dublin for several days and then to Munich for a week where I will galavant with high school pals. Somehow I will wander down to Sarajevo from there, reading, writing and spending university money along the way. I will spend a month in Bosnia-Herzegovina studying with several other American students and history and political sciences professors from UWS. I’m also bringing a fancy video camera from the video-production department and plan to shoot enough footage to compose a documentary.
I’m leaving in a few days here, but am just sick as a dog today. I’ve finished almost all of my finals, etc, but feel so entirely shitty that it’s hard to be excited. But it’s nice to force myself to relax, all the same. Right now I am scoping out hostels in touristy Dublin and trying to plan an escapade with a UWS friend in Munich… I’m not looking forward to that lame tourist feeling and am not afraid to pretend that I am Canadian. Everyone in Korea always thought I was Russian, so I think I’ve got some sort of exotic (or just plain strange) look that somehow gives me an edge in the foreign context. Being American is always the most embarrassing when abroad. Sinclair Lewis asked, “Why is it that traveling Americans are always so dreadful?” and also pointed out “Do you think it’s so snobbish, to want to see something besides one’s fellow citizens abroad?”. Needless to say, I am looking forward to another solo-trip….