Planes, trains, and automobiles…

Just kidding! There’s no trains or automobiles in this blog post. There’s barely even an airplane (well, two airplanes).

As our plucky little group packed our belongings to leave our first campsite in the Okavango Delta (Botswana) en route to Zimbabwe, the usual questions arose. (Usual, at least, for Americans familiar with our airport security). Are there restrictions on liquids? Will we have to take off our shoes? What about electronics? Andre, our tour leader, told us not to worry because there was no security. Airstrip1

As it turned out, there wasn’t even an airport. There was one “building” with fire extinguishers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and one sign. (That’s my friend Bobbie reading it.) Airstrip2

There was just an airstrip, a lonely little windsock indicating wind direction, and us waiting for our two airplanes that began as teeny dots in the sky and grew to be, well, somewhat bigger dots once they were on the ground. Would you like to fly in one of these?

TwoPlanes

Because there’s no airport staff either, that’s our guides Josh and Mike (and Andre, not seen in this picture) loading our luggage. On the right, you can see some of the gals walking to the other plane. LoadingLuggage

Before this, the smallest plane I’ve been on was a 20 (maybe 25) seater over the Gulf of Mexico between Cozumel and Cancun. The size of this plane? Here’s an inside shot. (The backs of those two heads closest to me? That’s Wendy [aka Windy] on the left and Andre on the right.) Guess which row I’m taking this photo from? Yep, the back row! InsidePlane

 

 

 

Purple peter picked a peck of pickled people eating pi

….uh…what? Exactly what I was thinking when I woke up the other night. I don’t usually dream about food, especially…an onion???

Yet there I was, carefully peeling an onion, layer by layer by layer.

But then it wasn’t an onion. It was an octopus. A purple octopus. I was peeling a purple octopus, layer by layer by layer…just like an onion. Basic CMYK

Then the purple octopus was a cake. One of those character cakes you make for a kid’s birthday party, but fancier. And I was slicing it in the smallest, narrowest pieces, like trying to find one just the right size to please that co-worker who, oh no, couldn’t eat that one or that one, but one just right with not too much frosting. (You know the type.) It was almost like I was trying to peel the purple octopus cake like an onion.

I didn’t wake up with any particular cravings for birthday cake…or onions…just a sense of “but I like octopi!” (and not for eating). They’re very smart creatures. Maybe one of them could interpret my dream for me.

Slow Times in the Checkout Line

Ever run to the pharmacy on your way to work, hoping for a quick in and out? You really need those meds, but you also don’t want to be late for work?  Right??

I usually have pretty good luck when I get there first thing in the morning, and there were only two people in line ahead of me yesterday. At first glance, that seems pretty good…except that out of a row of cash registers, there were only two employees working…at one register…because one was a trainee….and was she ever s l o w.

As I’m standing there, a few more people line up behind me, and we all wait. I start to wonder if I can get back to my car before that thirty minute window expires and the parking garage rate jumps from “free” to “one of your kidneys.”

I could hear some restless grumbles from the people behind (and the two people in front of me…still!), and I think maybe I should speak up, but knew it would come out too snarky.

And then we were all rescued by the older woman two people behind me. Shaking her silver and gray hair, she booms out, “Excuse me, can we get another register opened? The training is too slow! I’m growing older by the minute!” A pause. “There’s things I want to do before I die!”

Amid mumbles of gratitude from the rest of us, another employee showed up! So thank you, dear older woman, I hope you get to finish that list! And I hope it’s a long one too.

Oh, and thank you for making sure I got out of the parking garage with both my kidneys.