You say oyster and I say erster¹

I was surprised, as we started our descent into Houston, to see lots and lots of forests of green trees. Everything I know about Texas I learned from the movies, so I expected it to be all brown and sandy with little scrubby bushes, rather than huge forests of green trees. I expected it to be more like the Australian Outback, which I am also very familiar with from my vast experience of... watching The Thorn Birds miniseries once. Also, I didn't see Rock Hudson or James Dean or even Sal Mineo. All of my lifetime experience with Texas (2.5 hours in an airport) was sort of disappointing in that way.

From Houston, I flew to San Diego, where I boarded the ship I will be on for the next ten days, sailing down to Mexico. I'm doing a site visit on a rather well-known shipboard education program (if you have heard of ship-based study abroad, this is probably the one you have heard of). Once again I am struck by the realization that the movies have not really prepared me for reality. I've never been on a ship bigger than an English Channel ferry, so this is quite an experience! One of the first things I noticed when I boarded was that I was directed to take the elevator to Deck 5. I had no idea there were elevators on ships of this size. An elevator? On a ship? That's KERAAAAZY! I'm pretty sure that the Marx Brothers and Fred and Ginger did not have elevators. Nor Captain Jack Sparrow. What other fancy new things will there be? Next you will tell me that since the 1940s, they have introduced the Internet to ships! I just hope that this modernity does not come with a price. I will still be expecting lots of rum and swaggering and harp-playing stowaways and tap dancers in hilarious misunderstandings. If all this does not occur, I will be so disappointed.

Now I must go prepare for my lifeboat drill by taking off my pants, putting on a top hat and finding a tennis racket and a pineapple².

¹ No, Ginger, no one has ever pronounced it "erster." What kind of word is "erster"?

² If you don't know what I'm talking about, you need to rent Shall We Dance (not the Japanese one or the Richard Gere one) right now. I wish I were Edward Everett Horton. He is my shipgoing idol.

srah - Wednesday, 13 June 2007 - 11:30 PM
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Comments (5)

gravatar alfie - June 15, 2007 - 12:46 AM -

You and Edward Everett Horton.

gravatar Cheryl - June 15, 2007 - 8:09 AM -

When I flew into Texas, I don't remember it being green. I remember it being flat with lots and lots of subdivisions and no/so few I don't remember actual neighborhoods.

gravatar Denzylle - June 15, 2007 - 10:34 AM -

There was an elevator on the 'Lusitania' (latest JH offering on Discovery). It played an important role because passengers got trapped it in and drowned.

gravatar srah - June 15, 2007 - 2:11 PM -

Goodness! I am sticking with the stairs.

There were more houses and subdivisions as we began our descent.

gravatar cp - June 19, 2007 - 5:13 PM -

I, of course, read this and thought "the guy from 'fight club' was in 'shall we dance'?"

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