Sunday, March 11, 2007

Dream Journey -- Elephants & Zeppelins

Ah, for an elephant and a time machine! A magic carpet, a wise-cracking camel, a gypsy seer, and a genie. That sounds like the makings of an excellent adventure. Or, how about a zeppelin, a pair of aviatrix goggles, and a half of a mystical map? I'd have to find the other half, of course, by scaling down tied-together scarves from my hovering zeppelin into the conviently open palace window of the evil magician who possesses it. And maybe I'd have to sweet-talk his tiger guardian, who would turn out to be under an enchantment that I could break with a particular elixir I had won in a poker game in Zanzibar. During all of this time, the moon would be fat and full, and the rooftops of Samarkand would seem to be painted silver.

Ancient map now patched together with scotch tape, I would set out to fulfill some particular destiny of dire importance. That's the kind of journey I would like to live. Thank god I'm a writer and I don't have to actually learn how to fly a zeppelin!

There are real journeys of my dreams, too, such as my mango world tour (a circumnavigation of the world involving taste-testing ALL varieties of mangoes! (Apparently, there are over 1000!) I also dream of trekking through rainforests in Borneo to see orangutans and perhaps catch a whiff of binturong musk -- I mean, did you know there's a mammal with a prehensile tail (one of only 2 non-simian mammals in the world with prehensile tails) that produces a musk that smells like popcorn? It's true. I am not making that up. Look here.

And I would like to take an elephant trek through the tiger preserves of India. And ride a camel across a desert and camp at an oasis. And because I just can't help myself, yes, I would like to find a genie in a bottle in the process, thank you very much.

The world is so full of riches, both natural and man-made, and I want to see it ALL. And I want to eat flat bread baked in the ashes of a nomad's fire. And I want to buy bolts of silk at a floating market, and lotus flowers, and emeralds. And I want to see Machu Picchu, and hear howler monkeys, and sail through a glimmer of phosphorescence with a pod of killer whales leaping nearby. I want to ride a reindeer up to see the northern lights, and go cross-country skiing alongside a dogsled team that's hauling my pack, and see polar bears from afar -- very afar -- and see huge blue icebergs in fantastical shapes. And volcanoes. And coral reefs. And six-foot-wide bee hives, a hundred to a single tualang tree, 250 feet up in the rain forest canopy! And snakes that glide through the air! And. . . mangoes!!!

So quit killing the planet and starting wars, people! There's so much else to do!

More dream journeys here.


meghan said...

all I can say after that is, ME, TOO!!!!!!!!!!!

Alex S said...

I'm coming with you on some of these trips (and I will bring cupcakes in my backpack) !BTW, if you remember, I have ridden a camel in Egypt and it was actually quite scarier than I had expected- it is very HIGH when you are sitting atop one. I will ride my water buffalo (since I already have one) beside your elephant caravan and adventures will abound. Don't forget, however, to bring your 1 point bars because we'll still be on WW!

Anonymous said...

Hey, its me again, Slobodan, I don't have a blog yet but I frequently read yours and I want to apologize for not commenting more frequently. (Blogger doesn't like to let deceased ruthless dictators participate in the whole blogging
thing >: ) but what I really wanted to tell you is that I find you very inspiring and I love your blog and maybe if I had discovered your blog years ago, when I was still alive I mean, maybe I wouldn't have turned out to be such an evil meanie. Coming to your blog makes me want to paint polka dots and eat cookies and draw on walls. btw, the stake really hurts.

madelyn said...

I rode elephants when i was
in India - they often interrupted

I think i would love to join you on
your explorations...

wonderful dreamy writing!

rel said...

Gosh, I'd like to live in your head for 24 hours! Just 24 though, any more and I fear I might die of exhaustion. Like you though, i have many dreams. ;-)

Regina said...

I used to love to hear about my dad's stories about India when he was stationed there during the war... I think that's when I fell in love with India... he never got to see the Taj Mahal- I wish now I could see it for him...
Wonderful dream journey, Laini!

paris parfait said...

Ooh, I have written a camel across the desert and camped at an oasis and eaten flatbread baked in the ashes of a nomad's fire. And everything else you mention sounds delightful! Hope you get to do all that and more (in your imagination, as well as in real life).

Anonymous said...

I never got to ride an Elephant (yet!), but OH, I want to see and taste and think and experience and LIVE these things too.

You always give me something to strive for.


Unknown said...

Fabulous dreams. You make everyone want to come along. Nice scribblings.

Jone said...

Love it, Love it. Love it. I want to go too.

Anonymous said...

A mango world tour?!?!? Brilliant! Can my entire family and I come with you? ;)

Your lush imaginings are incredibly fun and energizing to read. I am so glad you write them down and share them with us.

Disco Mermaids said...

Wow! And all I want is to make it through the grocery store without my son throwing at tantrum.
That and go to Machu Picchu.
Keep dreaming! Things seem to be going well for you so far!


Tinker said...

What a wondrous, marvelous dream journey!
Though the only elephants and camels I've ridden have been at carnivals - they were magical experiences (though I really don't know how far I'd want to ride either one in real life - they were both a bit rocky rides as I recall!) But I love the IDEA of travelling by elephant or camel caravan. The mango quest does sound delicious!

Alex S said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Hi Laini!
My friend, Slobodan, turned me onto your site. I'm still trying to figure out this whole internet/blogging thing from the underworld but it seems pretty cool. I don't really know you yet, except for your fantastic blog, but you may have heard of me- Dictator? Iraq? all the news about my head rolling off last year and all that good stuff, well, anyway, life goes on, or in my case, death goes on! Its still quite the adjustment. My sons can't go torturing just anyone anymore just cuz they lose a soccer match so thats hard to get used to too. But you know Laini, we all have to just keep on trekking. I'm thinking about taking a class in beginning pottery down here. Incidentally, hell isn't totally terrible. I'm making some decent friends down here. Maybe one day we'll even get to meet? But first you have to do something really terrible. Would you do that for me? Rumor has it down here that you were totally crushed out on me in the 90s. Do tell!

Amber said...

What I'm thinking as I read this is, Wow! How is she ever going to have kids and do these things in one lifetime?! And I hope you DO do them,(and write about them), but I ALSO hope you have kids! Because you would be SUCH a GREAT mommy! Oh, The stories you would tell them!! What magic little beings they would be!

So figure out how you are going to do both. It would be good for the world either way. ;)


Deirdre said...

I want to read all the stories that will come from your adventures, real or imagined.

Anonymous said...

Amen to that.

Stop the war mongering and polluting and I can quit trying to Frida World and just kick back and enjoying Seeing da World!

PS: I have to agree with Alexandra on the camel riding - after a couple of very wobbly experiences in Jordan I opted for horses for touring the pyraminds in Egypt. Those camels are big, and also not so friendly.

Kimberley McGill said...

It is always a delight to stop by here - and I have a particular weakness for wise-cracking camels!

Jen B said...

I saw a show about Pets going bad, on Animal Planet. I am never riding an elephant