Sunday, October 26, 2008

Battle Wounds Sustained – October 26

Ah grandparents – I got comics from Nannie today and an email from Gramps: “We hope you didn't cut your toe on the coral in the Indian Ocean while swimming with Cory (whoever he is?) while studying hard half way around the world somewhere in Malaysia.”

Thanks for the sincere worry, Gramps. But you actually did remind me of a great story I left out. (Sad side story: I lost my notebook of random thoughts, quotes and contact information from this trip. I left it on a public bus in Malaysia. There was very little hope for it and it depressingly means that I am left with only the contact info for the guy that added himself to my gmail contacts at an internet café as a useful contact to refer back to. Please mourn with me and parents, please don’t be mad that it means I am now leaving on my cell phone because the number was listed on the first page of it. But yeah – that’s why I forgot about this story.)

Back to snorkeling – the best places to see the fish was right above the coral and rocks. Preferably the ones closest to the surface because they ensured the best visibility. But sometimes you were so close and so transfixed by the fish that you didn’t realize how – ouch! – close you were to the rocks. Also, Cory and I had a great system of peeking our heads above water and yelling the other’s name whenever we saw something especially cool, so we were always listening to each other.

One of my highlights from the day was hearing Cory screaming my name. (It was a highlight in my dreams later that night too. Oh and to answer your question Gramps, Cory is a good Dartmouth boy. Of course.) It was a rather loud scream so I was definitely expecting something exciting, like on the order of a shark. Instead though, I looked up to see Cory, belly down on a rigid rock, flapping his flippers and waving his arms, trying to get off as each wave continued to push him further and further off the rock. He pretty much looked like a helpless beached whale, making angry dolphin noises (Hey Nathan Bruschi, are you reading this?) and destroying his legs with cuts in the process.

I of course laughed and swallowed salt water and it was no longer funny.

Until he got off and suddenly all the fish were attracted to his bleeding legs.


Injury Number Two:

We found this Reptile House that would not be legal in the US – mostly because it lets its animals run wild. As in, the turtle shell that I stepped on in order to better see the poisonous snakes in the corner – actually belonged to a real turtle. And there was one snake just hanging out in a tree (most of the others were in cages, albethem cages that allowed you to reach in and touch them if you wanted). Oh and then there were the three monkeys – two of them were chained up and one of them literally was just running wild.

The monkeys and I didn’t really get along. It started when I felt bad because one had pushed its apple right out of its reach with the chain, so I went to go hand it back to it – but it grabbed a little to quick – and I got scared and may or may not have thrown the apple into a pond even further away. …I did go and fish it out of the pond (which had some Chernobyl – type creatures in it), but when I went to give it back to the monkey, he angrily stalked away to the other side of his tree. Oops.

Monkey number two started out liking me a bit more. I actually have a few great pictures of him all curled up in my lap, and me discovering that his chain was a simple clasp that I could undo to easily steal him. I was letting him play with my zippered purse because I was curious if it had been monkey-proof against the trained monkeys in India. He basically destroyed it, but did not manage to get anything out of it until…oh shit…he grabbed the sacred green sheet. The green sheet lists all of the important information for every country we go to. It’s like our Bible and we’re never supposed to lose it.

I wasn’t actually too worried about losing the green sheet. It was the last day and I had pretty much memorized where the port was – but I was actually worried about the monkey’s well-being. I didn’t know if the green sheet would to toxic to it…so I wanted to save the monkey from the poisonous sheet.

Commercial break.

Reconvene in the middle of dance between Eli, Cory and Monkey. Eli and Cory trying to save monkey’s life by grabbing the toxic sheet from its mouth and full using the monkey’s lack of mobility to their advantage. Keep in mind that they’re trying to save the monkey’s life. And then – suddenly – out of nowhere, monkey turns and bites Eli in the leg. Thank God she’s wearing jeans because otherwise blood would have been drawn for sure. As it is, there are teeth marks through the jeans and a huge, immediate bruise.

I checked with the clinic on the ship though and I don’t need rabies shots though.

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