Diary Jottings

Dear Readers,
How painful to tell you that I cancelled my confirmed flight to Dubai at the eleventh hour. I just could not feel compelled to drag myself to the airport. I am fit but badly jet-lagged. Although a frequent traveller for the last 11 years – minus 2006 – I have recently with renewed zest, rushed across different time zones in a drastic manner. Also, a sharp niggling toothache that has now mysteriously fled, did not help. Ahh… I suppose I am the child with a carefree disposition who lives it up hedonistically in a playground, then suddenly becomes tired and wants to go home.
Had I flown to Dubai, I’d not have summoned up enough enthusiasm for any author talk although the Emirates LitFest stays my perfect cup of tea, among other international literary festivals. It isn’t just that I love Arabic literature. I was present last year and the event was jewelled up as nothing short of a classy, elegant and friendly festival. The organizers performed an excellent job at comfort and Dubai owns a knack for its flamboyant style. It’s just the sort of thing that’s up my street.
Today was the first time I cancelled a flight. The efficient travel agent managed to perform incredible things with my sorry ticket and thankfully, I have a new Dubai flight waiting in the wings. Emirates is also my preferred airline for many routes.
Thus, I shall now fly to Dublin this weekend. Although I’m happily Malaysian, Dublin is home. Right now, I want to go back to Des, our apartment, the seagulls, my many bookcases, the atmospheric feel of my rooms and to gaze once more upon the lovely view of Phoenix Park from our balcony. That would prove a refreshing tonic for my weary soul.
I also have a gruelling Kilimanjaro climb racing up the calendar in about 5 weeks from now and I need to train for a tougher fitness, lest my old leg injury resurfaces as it did last January, while on the snowcap and just 3 hours away from the summit.
I’ve got to do it properly this time round and collect my certificate so my greater priority was the mountain climb. Look just a little run-down and the eagle-eyed rangers won’t let you trek up. I always go in a jeep to a couple of safaris as a very kind meltdown after my exhausting week’s climb. If I’m successful this time with my pursuit of the peak, there’s going to be a celebration of parties for me both in Tanzania and Melbourne, to where I’ll return for a fortnight if all goes well.  Also, Lewa one of my early Dar es Salaam guides, has promised to take me to Pemba to fish.

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