Day 1: Onboard AA flight to LAX

» 27 May 2007 » In Travel »

Preparations are over. Whatever is left behind stays there for sure. So far it’s only NoJetLag, and I hope that it’ll be the only thing that I forgot. The big suitcase turned out to weigh 49.5 lbs. Precision — ha! Maybe I overpacked, but you never know what you may need in a brand new destination over the course of 3 weeks. A Frisbee, for example (count: 1). Or Shout detergent wipes (count: 4). If I followed Lonely Planet’s advice, however, the weight would probably be twice as much. Just the list of medications it recommends would warrant a separate bag. And, seriously, half of the list is prescription only. What the heck? Who’s going to give me antibiotic steroidal eardrops or Tinidazole ahead of time, just in case? Guess I’ll have to avoid contracting anything requiring such a prescription, which includes, but not limited to: swimming in the pool (swimmer’s ear), walking on the beach (coral cuts), swimming in the ocean (coral ear), lying on the beach (sunburn), eating reef fish (ciguatera poisoning), swimming in flooded areas (leptospirosis), enjoying the sun (heatstroke), sleeping (mosquito bites leading to dengue fever), taking a crap (traveller’s diarrhoea), touching stuff (poisonous cone shells), eating (eosinophilic meningitis), and, quite possibly, breathing (hell, I don’t know, but there’s got to be something, right?). I’m good at being cautious and considering contingencies, but at some point you have to stop worrying about what might happen in the course of everyday life and just live it. I did stock up on sunscreen and insect repellent, however.
One thing that has me worried a bit is weather. The rain season should be over by now, but the 10-day forecast ominously portends “cloudy” and “showers”. Damn it, I don’t want to spend my vacation bundled up in raingear. So come on, Rarotonga and Fiji, show me some sunny love. I intend to hang out in the sun and drink piña coladas, or whatever the local frozen fruity alcoholic drink is. I want to climb a coconut tree and possibly fall from it. My goal is to come back with a world-class tan, and possibly partially damaged liver (it regenerates, from what I heard). I’m really looking forward to it, if the weather is nice. No TV, no phone, no radio, no newspapers, no bloody laptop! My cameras and iPod Nano are the only electronics I am bringing along. Books, nature, and people will occupy the rest of my time. But first, let’s get to LAX, where I’ll have to pick up my bag and go check in with Air New Zealand.

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