Monday, March 24, 2008

Instant Karma

So, I'm with a small group of friends. We're walking in the middle of
Penang, Malaysia, joking about the two people that our friend Avi
absolutely won't travel with -- when lo and behold, one of them
parachutes in from out of nowhere and utters the phrase "mind if I
join you?" I'd like to pretend that I'm the kind of person who could
answer that question with an honest "yes," but who am I kidding, my
silence was just as rhetorical.

She follows us around, awkwardly, for over an hour, then just as we
sit down to eat dinner, utters yet another misdemeanor -- "I feel a
little out of place. This is awkward." What's even more awkward than
her pointing out the awkwardness she created by invading others'
plans, is the fact that she then didn't leave after saying that and
stuck around for another hour. What do you do in these moments? Like
it or not, I've come to realize that Semester at Sea is sometimes a
breeding ground for thorny social situations. I remember a 32 year old
ship colleague once telling me on the streets of St. Petersberg that
she had never seen a penis before, intercut with her quest to find
fast food and postage stamps.

We're stopped in Singapore right now, bunkering. I had aimed to
finally write about Mauritius and South Africa today, but Sue Fan came
through with the first three episodes of LOST, so now I need to
quickly finish watching season 3. Hallelujah!

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