Feeling Naked and Other Travel Traumas

Sep 1, 2011 | 2 comments

Wake-up Call

     It’s amazing the baggage we collect over the years and have to be sure we take with us when we travel.  And I’m not talking about suitcases and toiletry kits and hanging bags, either.  I’m talking about those comfort zones we carry in our heads.
     Take my, charm bracelet, for instance.  It’s gold and fabulous and the product of years and years of careful additions.  It represents many of the places I’ve traveled and much, much more.  Each charm was selected because it spoke to me of the particular place – like the crown for Denmark because during WWII the king and his household rode through the streets wearing black armbands so that the Nazis couldn’t distinguish Jews from non-Jews.  I liked that.  Or the pissoir for France because when I was first there they still were in use along the main boulevards – so French!  If I forget to wear my charm bracelet when I travel, I feel absolutely naked.
     Then there’s that morning cup of coffee.  The day cannot start unless we can have a cup of coffee before we get out of bed.  Granted, one of us gets up to make said coffee, but then we sit abed looking out over the bay and discuss our plans for the day.  Obviously, we have to forgo the view part when we travel, but not the rest.  Sometimes that’s tricky.  And, we do know that life can go on with or without the coffee.  It just doesn’t seem so worthwhile.
     Of special note is traveling at the end of the month.  Any month.  Because, on the first day of the next month we must remember to say “Rabbit Rabbit” before uttering a single other sound.  That, our friend Michael told us long ago, will insure good luck for the new month.
     Nyel has taken to putting a sign on the bathroom counter to remind us – when he remembers.  I was so surprised to find that sign here in Seattle at our friend Linda’s in the wee hours of this morning.  He had actually packed it along with the other necessities of being away for a few days!  And Linda had the coffee pot ready to go.  And I remembered my bracelet.  Life is good…


  1. Ann

    That dashing groom is one amazing guy!!

  2. Nancy

    Sydney and Nyel: Had no idea you two did the “conejo” (espanol, in ingles, rabbit) on the 1st day of each month. We learned about this ritual from the late Sadie Gregory, a dear member of the Guild for Psychological Studies. We like to consider the hundreds, perhaps thousands of sentient beings saying the word. And guess what? For the first time in eons, we forgot to utter the magic word – busy getting ready to leave for an early morning appointment. Gad….what to expect for the month!


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