Sunday, September 23, 2007

Day 17: Jet Lag; Ruins; Itching Attack

After sleeping till 2:00 pm on Sunday, I go to the Internet Cafe and write my blog for about 5 hours.

When I emerge, it is early evening, the night after election day and people are driving around the streets blaring their horns, flags hanging out of the car windows.

I decide to avoid the mobs, take in some culture, and go see the ancient ruins. Call me a Philistine, but I'm not all that impressed. It looks like a bunch of giant unfinished basements. Cultural highlights of the evening:
- some old dogs sleeping in one set of ruins.
- a clean cut, chubby middle-aged Australian guy playing guitar and singing "Like a Rolling Stone."
- a punky kid dressed in black with a t-shirt that read "Dead girls don't say 'no.'"

It is 1:00 am. I go back to my room to try to go to sleep. The next morning I have to buy tickets for an 18-hour ferry to a Greek Island called Karpathos and for my return trip by plane from Karpathos to Athens.

Back in the room, things get ugly. I see a mosquito and kill it. I go to shut off the lights and lie down. An hour later, full body itching attack. I get up and go to the bathroom mirror to look at myself. Only redness is on my wrist. But I'm itchy all over. I go back to my bed and pull back the sheets for signs of bedbugs. No signs, but wrist has a nice welt. Went into my medical kit and pulled out the hydrocortisone cream. I contemplate smearing it all over my body, but remember that the stuff isn't cheap. I put a little dab on my wrist.

I read David Guterson's novel "Our Lady of the Woods." (Second of his books I have with me. The other was great. So far, this one kind of sucks.

4:00 am, I try to sleep again. Anxiety attack and racing thoughts regarding:
- missing the ferry
- buying ferry and plane tickets that are phoney
- getting mugged in Bangkok by a girlie boy (Bangkok is notorious as a haven for guys who undergo sex change operation.)

Breakfast is at 7:30, so I only have a few hours to go. I go back to reading.