armchair traveling

Sargalau, Iraqi Kurdistan region

Just another morning of pondering…

Dazzling sunlight streams onto my lanai (balcony) as I sip coffee and greet the day. It’s the last day of the semester and all is well in my world. Another milestone achieved in another country, I’m anticipating my upcoming adventure traveling through northern Iraq to Diyarbakir, southeastern Turkey next week.

I drift off into the past, seeking insights into the stories from these ancient paths. The caravanserai (resting spots for weary travelers and business people) where peoples from all over the ancient world would find themselves together for a night or two and tell their tales, eat, rest: Where they are from; what they are transporting; their destinations, etc.

In my mind I contribute to this ritual. I seek solace in the past, perhaps running away from the present confusions from a global world and all the ensuing difficulties. What has really changed though? From oral histories to cuneiform tablets to papyrus to paper to computer, humanity desires to create some sort way to immortalize their actions as their physical bodies decay. How do I weave my story into something finite?

I also desire to share ideas, stories, coffee with people. These brief moments of time shared, how to etch these soliloquies into a timeline that endures the shifting sands of time where I can return to at my will- whatever the physical coordinates I dwell in at any given time?

Sirens ring out in the distance. My coffee needs refilling, yet I can’t be bothered in this moment to shift into ‘that’ reality. Birds are chirping, palm trees are swaying, clouds are marching, and I am pondering. I stick around in THIS reality, waiting to intercept another story that surely will materialize through this diaphanous portal.

But, coffee…Time to disturb the past and enter the present. A sudden downpour! Perfect timing.