Saturday, August 16, 2008

Oh, and one more thing.

I’m not certain that listening to Muse’s Absolution at a pretty high volume while holed up in a corner of the Fatlanta Airport is a good place to … wait for it … muse, but the lady on the loud microphone barking at people to flash their passports before boarding (every five minutes, too, no fail) was starting to get under my skin.

Doing it this way tends to turn people watching into a music video shoot right before my eyes. Those moving the fastest work the best on “Stockholm Syndrome” … they’re the ones who will definitely make the final cut. As for “Time is Running Out,” however, Every Single Person wins a Get Into This Music Video For Free card. The vaguely European tweeners just spitting distance from here, the ones wearing those cute black and white dresses—one in polka dots and one in stars—they’ll be the focus of the video re-shoot. Not because it’s creepy, either, but because they have all kinds of presence in this environment of colors and movement and transition. Why not single out those already sticking out?

Anyway.

I thought that, after the flurry of activity that Panama was this past 10 or 11 days, I’d have more to say about the place. I mean, I’ve said a good lot about it already. I’ve touched on everything from the unique animals (the quasi anteaters that wanted to take off my hand in the zoo) to the smells (open sewage) to the sights (beautiful! gorgeous! wish you were here!) to the fruits (a big bin of mangosteen was finally located) and on and on. If I ever moved there—and, yes, I have toyed with the idea plenty, even before I set sail for that land several days ago—I think it’d play into my highly distractive tendencies rather well. One could prolly live there for a couple of years or more and STILL not run out of new adventures to tackle. It would be a fantastic place to write a book, yes, but the lures of the beach and hikes and all else would be hard ones not to give into on a very regular basis. The country is many things to many different types of people, but one thing it’s not? Boring. It’ll never be boring. One steady string of adventures.

That said, spending my last couple of days there ended up not being as fun as all those that preceded it. Sure, I finally ambled my way over to the historical marvel that the Panama Canal is and I fought with my didn’t-wanna-spit-out-the-right-words version of Spanish I speak so fluently, but I lost my partner-in-crime, the one who greets each day with a loud fart: yes, I mean my little brother DJ.

For all the relaxing I wanted to mix in with my vacationing, his attitude was one of not wasting the time we had to fill up with the good stuff (which pretty much paralleled mi madre’s take). By the time he left, I missed him like crazy. It was something akin to separation anxiety. It hadn’t mattered what we had done while we were there, but it was generally a better experience when the both of us were doing it together. Romantic, no? Eh, shaddap.

This leads me to this other revelation … I adore my family. I reveal this for nobody’s benefit but my own. Perhaps I should have known all along that I have some pretty cool cats related to me but, in a land filled with no working cell phones and nobody to befriend and lots of time to spend with one another, I ended up appreciating them to a degree I don't think I had before.

My Panama-raised mom for her restless nights and fretting over some semblance of an itinerary that she desperately attempted to stick to (taking us to the places she’d grown to love as a kid), my sister for tackling the jungle to the point of sinking her sandals into the mud and bleeding all over herself, my other sister for allowing me to steal away her Sumo Baby whenever I so pleased (the effusive women at the market fully believed I was her father … and said we had the eyes to match one another’s), my other wee sister for owning up to some of the best stories in the world (throwing a monkey at a surprised Chinese man still rates among her best/funniest ... I giggle even now), a little brother who quite happily took on the wilderness with his older brothers and liked it, even after it ended in his own blood (sortof a theme, eh?) and brother-in-laws who would happily drive down the wrong side of the road, even as the semis tried to run us off it altogether.

There's more to them than that, too, but it must be said that they're a real good bunch of people. It could have been one big nightmare altogether … and, I won’t lie, there were some less-than-pretty parts along the way, as all family vacations tend to have … but, if I only take away the bit about my enjoying my family more than I did previously, I’m okay with that. I guess sometimes you need to see them in a whole new setting to be able to see who they are and what they’re made of. And, really, they’re beautiful people. I'm lucky to be able to associate with them and call them both friends and relatives.



10 comments:

Sara said...

I do think Sumo baby looks a lot like you.

TRIBU said...

Just between you and me, this post is my favorite!

Moonbird said...

Nice. A good read today.

Mel&Todd said...

Thanks, D. I think I speak for everyone when I say we kinda like having you around too. Yes, we've made new memories that will stick indeed. Love you oodles.

frog said...

Thanks for the reference to the muse videos. I've never heard of them and led me to other videos by them. Spiral Static........ it was a good video day. I'm glad your back music boy. Smiles, em

Kilee said...

so, am I the uninteresting sister since I'm the only one you left out? Sadness.;)

Dainon. said...

Hmm, an oversight for sure! If I were to add a tidbit on you, it'd be something along the lines of your wanting to ride horses for $2 along the coast and how you reverted back to your six-year-old self, ketching toads in the moonlight.

Yeah ... something like that.

Kilee said...

Ha ha...that's a good one. :)

Kilee said...

And the oversight is probably due to the fact that your family is so Huge! I completely understand....

Nicole said...

Dainon, I truly loved your comment. I feel the same way. Spending time with the family made Panama one of my favorite memories. Without the family, it would not have been as special to me. I hope that someday we will be able to do this; however,we might just have to wait until the next life to do it. Love you so much! Nicole