I find myself walking home from the Ossington subway station in Toronto, Canada. Slung over my shoulder is a lotto 649 / Toronto Blue Jays golf bag won months ago at the Rogers Centre. The contest? To be the fan of the game. I had to be louder and more obnoxious than twenty five thousand other people. From the onset there was no question that the prize would be mine.
As I pass Black Belt World a scrolling red L.E.D. sign flashes the message "Take control of your life today!!!" The three exclamation points really attempt to send home the message, however as a high school English teacher all I can think is: One or None. That's the rule. Still, the message sticks with me. While I think the personified marquee, constantly informing with its cold illumination, wanted me to enroll in its lessons and two aye em practice sessions, I nevertheless will take control of my life today![!!]
My bag's strap digs into my right shoulder, weighed down by my night's purchase. Five travel books. A closer inspection would reveal two from National Geographic: Japan and Hong Kong. There is also a Fodor's Thailand, a Rough Guide to Paris, and Let's Go: Europe on a Budget.
While Thomas Kohnstamm's Do Travel Writers go to Hell? has taught me never to view Travel Guides as any sort of definitive text, they are always my initial starting point. And with the Toronto store B.M.V. (Books, Music, and Video) located at both Dundas Square and on Bloor Street they are more than affordable. I never have to pay more than ten dollars for a guide book.
My plans were set in motion a month ago, but they're only now starting to race forward. My biggest worry, since Mulako helped me solve my Zambian issues, is obtaining a Kenyan visa - but there's no reason to worry about that now. Not while cheap give-away-quality plastic nylon straps cut into me. Right now all I can think about is getting home, and adding the books to my shelf for future reading and planning.
I wish there was a way that I could think of anything other than travel, but it doesn't seem possible.
I keep hearing about the travel bug, and how once it bites you, that's it, you're done for; once it bites you, you will forever be consumed. If I could, I might try to avoid it, but unfortunately that course of action would do nothing. You see, I've been previously bitten.