Wednesday, June 07, 2006

It's that time again

As I sit here on this fine Danish morning, I type with a very real sense of excitement and anticipation. I have chosen to return to Denmark to visit the family that so graciously took me in when I came to play for a local club so many years ago. They have all done very well for themselves, and I can easily say that our stay has thus far been fantastic. Anders, the little brother I never had, has opened the only pool hall in town, genius! I have still not beaten him, and by the looks of it I might not. But being the sporting man he is, he keeps a smile on my face with beers from the tap, and then soundly trounces me once again.

 The kick-off of the World Cup is only a few days away, the US involvement exactly one week, and here I sit just North of the preparations trying to contain the feelings that are beginning to percolate up to the surface. I think it is the coming of the worlds most beautiful sporting spectacle, then again maybe it is just this tar I have been drinking as a coffee substitute. They hand out spoons with every cup here for a reason. I thought at first it would be to scrape out the last few drops from the bottom of the cup. I later realized the spoon served a dual purpose. It's primary function was simple, to be used as a miniature shovel in the sugar dish, and the second, though not as clearly stated, is to indicate to your welcoming host that you would indeed like another cup. This is accomplished when the spoon is held at the end of a caffeine induced, epileptic hand and placed near or inside the freshly emptied cup, the result is very much like ringing a bell, "I am interested in another cup please! I think that my current level of vibration is nearly sufficient to obtain levitation!" Tak!

So many of you I might not have spoken to in weeks, months, or years. Some of you probably haven't heard from me since Korea, but the time is here again that I find it necessary to perhaps bore, maybe inform, and hopefully, at least entertain you with my notes from the field. Should you decide you care for none of it, please feel free to delete immediately. Should you take my invitation please remember that this is a month of long days, longer nights, and at times the thoughts that make it into these writings might not be all that PC. I promise myself prior to every trip I make outside the borders that have been my home for much of my life, I will be a good ambassador. So with that in mind we begin:

~India Air! The very name rouses thoughts of chickens and goats in the isles, and what we found was not far off. India Air was chosen for its bottom line prices (beer's expensive) and it lived up to every slashed penny. We were given the option of two mid-cabin seats in a row of three, in which the tickets had already been printed. Or, two solitary seats at the very back of the plane. I say "We'll take the back." WAIT! "Is it loud back there?" The woman behind the counter this a bluff? Does she play on line poker?? Are these seats still available because they are indeed the shittiest seats on the plane and everyone knows this but me? DAMN YOU INDIA AIR!!

I say "What we have is fine", and as I reach for the tickets my companion clears her throat. Perhaps she knows that these tickets will involve her sitting in the middle, between me and any one of the other people preparing to board this 8 hour flight. Most of whom do not look as though they have Old Spice in their toiletry bag. Though "old spice" might not be all that far off after such an amount of time. Our attendant searches for my response. Behind those steely eyes she is waiting; coolly, breathlessly waiting, to see how I navigate these tumultuous waters . "We'll take the rear!" I've grown tired of standing in line, and this back and forth seat selection might never end. If it's loud I won't be able to her myself nor Lindsay complain. Besides the drinks are going to be free, and after a few Bourbons neat I'll just entertain myself by finding the pitch of the engines and humming out loud in perfect unison. The other passengers will be enthralled by my abilities I'm quite sure!
The nice lady reprints our tickets and as she hands them to me.... wait... is that an "I know something you don't know" twinkle in your eye?!? DAMN YOU INDIA AIR!
The seats are fine, but what comes next I doubt you will ever find on United. Our stewardess comes rolling up and poses me with this vexing question; "Would you like curry'd mmphilshhoner, or chicken?" I look to Lindsay for a glimpse of recognition, "what did she say?" "Chicken!" I think to myself "I am on an adventure, traveling to far away lands, broadening my horizons. If I get an intestinal infection from the India Air chicken that forces me to fashion a field diaper out of duct tape and cocktail napkins I will be very disappointed! So I ask my patient servant, "What was that curry dish again?" Her indiscernible response came back the same as before, "Curry'd slllmnickblner" "Mmmmm, that sounds good, I'll have that!!"
I should have asked for pretzels.~

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