Traversing an island shaped like a hand, an island choked in dense jungle and enclosed by steep rocky cliffs and lengthy white-sand beaches, an island which feels isolated on a vast and rarely-traveled ocean. This isn’t the Caribbean or anywhere of the Pacific which I’ve known so well (I’ve never touched any ocean except the Pacific, as I discussed only yesterday — relevant because my wife recently returned from a trip to Florida). I wonder if this unfamiliar hand-shaped dot on a map is somewhere southeast Asian, or even out in the Indian Ocean, somewhere I’ve never dreamt of before. Perhaps I had this impression because my sprightly companion was a Vietnamese woman. I’m glad to have her as the terrain is dense and confusing, and I’ve unthinkingly chosen a needlessly convoluted route. We opt instead for her suggested shortcut through one of the creases between what would be the palm and the ring finger — a piece of human anatomy that I’m sure has a name, but a name which apparently I’ve never learned and so can’t use. It’s hand-shaped, down to the lines.
Peeking into the window of a group living situation near city hall, I spot my old friend Mark from my Munchery job. Left on the pool table is a sample bag of marshmallow M&Ms, something sold in other countries. The residents decide to try it.
A retiring Roman emperor in his stoic marble villa, symmetrical columns and stairs. While he tries to announce his retirement, his generals all begin announcing at once that they are now the heir to the new caesar. A jug of Pedialyte in fridge in place of milk.
Flying to Nicaragua on the way to somewhere nearby, even further away, also tropical and bright. We’re not allowed to leave the airport on this leg of the trip. Only when we finally arrive.