Traveling with the not-so-innocents abroad

IMG_5660It amazes me, just how integrally weak the modern first-world traveller really is.

When Mark Twain traveled past these alkalai lakes, traversing Mormon territory and negotiating the vast expanses of sprawling, quasi-volcanic spreads  that sometimes remind one of the Badlands, he was in a stagecoach–sans shock absorbers. AND–he had an unabridged dictionary that kept rattling off a storage shelf, and crushing his skull in the night.

Right next to me, a lady is melting down because the continental breakfast “isn’t as vast as some,” and is indeed–quite sparse.”

I’m sitting here, eating my toasted bagels, hard-boiled eggs and coffee, listening to her wax eloquently to other people coming in about the nature, parameters, and apparent holocaust-equivalent malevolencies buried in the heart of the poor scab who arranged this protracted assault against gastrointestinal desire.

I’m not saying everyone is like that. The people I met in Yosemite last year at Housekeeping Camp can testify to the fact that a crossection of humanity still exists that can absorbs the idea of deprivations–albeit in the name of saving money. I spent fourteen hours climbing to and from Half Dome last August, and by the Time I got back to my three-sided lean-to and kicked a raccoon out of there, the central showers were already closed and I went to bed with a nightmarish sheen of dirt, sweat, accumulations, rashes, sunburns and a visible map of berms on my body.

What is wouldn’t give to hear this woman negotiate THAT sparseness . . .

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