Friday, April 12, 2013

before this library burns

Here is another little story that might disappear when this library burns.

Laredo is the first one that came to mind even though Waco is another popular one for different reason but Laredo had a special personal meaning to me: the city I never made it to and probably very luckily as chances are I would not be here to tell the story.

"When a knowledgeable old person dies, a whole library disappears" -An old African proverb

It would seem that I now have TWO stories.

Ok first one then, I always thought that African proverb said:
When an old person dies, a whole library disappears and I LIKED it that way.

Why does it “have to be” a knowledgeable one and what makes one knowledgeable and the other NOT knowledgeable?
Alright let’s try not to meander too much here and make this a long and winding road but knowledge, by all means, is very relative. One does not need to be an epistemologist to KNOW that. What does knowledge consist of and what is not knowledge well who KNOWS?

I really hate the new and real proverb the more I think of it as it demeans other human beings as less valuable. 

I often think of (who else) my mother when I think of this proverb when every day I study my roots and my genealogy and some information that is nearly impossible to find on the vast internet is temporarily available in my mother’s head if it is still stored there that is. When she goes she will be in some sort the last of the Mohicans the baby of a huge family now 81.  

And yet even if I have retrieved some of that knowledge through the internet it will be interesting to share with the only one that cares a little about this kind of history because let’s face it we care about our own and that’s about it in this jungle we call ours and this is why we have words like collateral damage that do not make us flinch or hurt in the least way.

We are as a race and by Dunbar’s rule, very parochial, very provincial in our approach to everything.  Just look at local news: 3000 dead here or there and what do they say next? So many Australians (or Canadians or wherever you come from), AGAIN DEMEANING the 2998 other deaths.

So let’s go back to MY African proverb and my little disappearing library here. J

I was 18 years old IIRC young and not so innocent and rather stupid and immature maybe even more than your average 18 year old at the time.  My ‘best friend’ strangely enough was this 14 year old maybe a little more mature than the average 14 year old named Roger C, who happened to be my mother’s boyfriend’s son.
We had come to this very WISE plan to hitch hike our way to Colombia and not the British one either the Colombia with Bogota in South America.

We worked for 3 months or so in a dark medieval electrical box manufacturing plant and I will have to fudge the numbers here but they were as ridiculous as a $90 one way bus ticket to Laredo Texas and about $400 cash in our hands.  So we hopped on the bus in Montreal crazy and dreamy and hopeful. The “plan” was to bus to Laredo and hitch hike our way through Central America and then on to Bogota. J

24 hours later exhausted already, we were no further than Windsor Ontario at the Detroit border. Now I have to admit we were rather dumb and lousy liars so to make the story short when the customs guards found out my friend was only 14 and we only had $400 between the both of us and we probably told them the whole plan too hahaha well they sent our asses back to Montreal and gladly sponsored our early return trip. J

By the time we made it back to Toronto though there was a SNAFU in the paperwork and they wouldn’t let us on the bus without paying so exhausted after 36 hours with no sleep we splurged on a taxi to the airport and a one way flight to Montreal for something like $40 IIRC again.

Then too ashamed to go straight back home we rented a room somewhere and spent all of our hard earned money in 2 days before returning to our respective parents with our tails well set and tucked where it belonged.

In hindsight, which is always 20/20, we should have taken a two way tickets to Plattsburgh or Detroit even and then take it from there but then again have we had that “wisdom” I am not quite sure I’d be here to tell the story as there was over one million way to die between Detroit and Bogota and none of them really fun that I can think of.

One of the many dangers of a mania spells that I luckily avoided.
So here is my L for Laredo silly story in a nutshell.  I am 3 times 19 now and lived to tell the tale.  The imagination of what could have happened could make for an interesting novel but we will never know now will we?

 Passport Photo....would you trust a face like that now? :)

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