We have a lot of catching up to do, don’t we? I don’t know how to do it best. A week is a long time, when you’re on vacation. New experiences piled high on top of each other. Little do you know how easily those experiences can topple when you’re traveling with little kids. But we had very few of those, I think.
Give me another week and my overly censorious memory will make the entire trip a pastoral frolic in the land of the ancestors.
But for now I’ll still remember some chaos.
First things first. Jet lag. Eek.
It’s like the common cold. You know it’s coming, you know what it’s like, you know what causes it. And yet there’s nothing you can do about it.
INCORRECT SPOILER ALERT.
An aside. I don’t remember the details accurately, and I’m not going to look them up, but some of what I write will be factually accurate. The rest is accurate in terms of remembered truth (cf. censorious memory, above).
Aside aside. Nicholson Baker’s U and I is a great book that works along these lines. He recounts his relation to John Updike’s books and the Updike he has created in his mind by reading them, but he consciously refuses to look up the exact locations and locutions of what he remembers, making it a personal account of himself, rather than a study of Updike. And yet. Awesome book, any way you slice it.
Back to the SPOILER. War of the Worlds. H.G. Wells. I saw the movie with the recently disgraced Tom Cruise. That is, I saw the movie with Julie, but Tom Cruise starred in it. Really, Spielberg’s camera motion starred in it, but that’s beside the point. The aggressive aliens get beaten, in the end, by some earthly bacteria (or virus?) which they weren’t prepared for. Sort of like the decimation of Native Americans by European invaders, but with poetic justice. Anyway, I don’t remember what the bacteria (or virus?) was, but in my memory it’s the common cold.
And here’s where jet lag comes in. To add to the terror, we never find out why the aliens attack in the first place.
But I think I know.
Think about it. They traveled for months in the dark. They probably came from a planet with a rotation period of 79.3 earth hours, have two suns, three moons, and six seasons. They get here, can’t see to get any sleep, are always hungry, toss and turn in bed, and get increasingly ticked off.
I, too, would have let loose with eerie tripods and OOOOMing noises, if they had been at my disposal.
Instead, I stuck to drinking beer to overcome my crankiness.
And I took the occasional nap.
Maybe aliens should learn about beer and naps.