In the last week I’ve:
- Eaten a breakfast consisting of scrambled eggs, fried bacon, and real coffee. The worst thing about South America was breakfast. There were exceptions–egg-ceptions, haha!–but I was lucky if I found a place that served one egg in the morning. Mostly, I ate bread with butter and jam, or dulce de leche. Quite a change from the high-protein breakfasts I was used to.
- Gotten a haircut and a shave. After three months without either, friends and family were concerned that I wouldn’t be allowed to enter the United States on account of my appearance. I think I looked more like a homeless beggar than a terrorist. In any event, the hair had to go. Since I hadn’t been spending money on haircuts, I spoiled myself and got a full treatment, including a shave with a straight blade razor. It’s nice to be pampered sometimes.
- Binge-watched the entire sixth season of Game of Thrones; the first season where the show moved ahead of the books (for the most part). Of course, I never would have read the books if not for the show. Incredibly, I managed to avoid any major spoilers during my sabbatical. I mean, obviously Jon Snow wasn’t dead. And Twitter tipped me off to the fate of Wylis *lets out a sad, “Hodor”*. But I got to thoroughly enjoy the part where Jon Snow smashed Ramsay’s stupid face into the ground like it was a Christmas present from Santas D.B. Weiss and David Benioff. It’s a fascinating setup for Season Seven; the world of Ice and Fire has mostly been a terrible place for women, yet women are now poised to take power in all corners of the map. Speaking of women in power…
- Avoided all news about the election. It’s not that I don’t care–I do–it’s that I don’t think anything being said by–or reported about–the candidates right now has any value. Barack Obama made a landmark speech about race in the months leading up to his election in 2008. Or so I’m told; I have no memory of this. Whatever is said now will be swept under the rug in a few months. I’m only interested in what Trump or Clinton will do once they become President. And I intend to do my best to figure that out over the next month.
- The campaigns have been great entertainment. Not for me–I haven’t been paying attention–but for travelers from other countries. Many people I met asked me who I planned to vote for, or told me how much fun they had watching the debates. The highest office in the country is being decided by a reality TV show; it would be funny, if it wasn’t so sad.
- Read all the news I can about the upcoming NHL season. Hockey is back next week, and I intend to write a preview. I may even post it before the seasons starts.