It is early on Sunday morning, and I wish that I were still in bed, but I am not. I tried to stay in bed. I didn't even care that I was awake. Retina. I just wanted to stay cuddled down in our sweet-smelling sheets, retina, especially since the pillows were conforming so perfectly to my head. Retina

Okay, that word has got to quit poking up through my consciousness like that. Retina. And then a cat paw pushed into my left eye socket, and then one in my right. And then I remembered that he spontaneously bit my right nipple yesterday evening, and I began to worry about protecting my dear bosoms.

Staying in bed had become far more irritating than having to get up, so I shuffled into the living room to look up retina. I must have dreamt the word just before waking, because it keeps drumming through my head. Just as I suspected, my dreaming brain was mispronouncing it reh-tee-nah, when it is just plain old reh-tin-ah, and it has me thinking that the cat had been poking at my eyes longer than I was consciously aware of.

Do you know what all this means, people? It's obvious. More content from the travel journal I kept in Costa Rica!

24 December 2005

This morning, we took a trip into San Isidro to do some shopping and looking around. [San Isidro is a town of approximately 200,000, and the only traffic control I saw, including both lights and signs, were three traffic lights downtown.]

The Fiery One bought a shirt. The sizing here works for him, because he's not much bigger than the average Costa Rican male. I bought a pair of jeans, but the sizing did not work out so well for me. In Canada, depending on the store and the sizing it uses, I usually wear an 8/9 or a 10/11. Here [in Costa Rica], I am a 15/16. That's quite the jump in numbers when you're not expecting it.

I had to go to the last and largest size on the rack to find jeans that fit, but when I did, I found the most comfortable jeans that I have ever put on my body. They are called Ke Chika jeans, and my ass looks smokin'.

Here, I am a head taller than most women, and when I looked at myself in the mirror to see how the jeans fit, I was the white elephant in the room. In the reflection, I could see crowds of darker, shorter people, and I was remarkably tall and pale in comparison. Any sense I had of blending in on the street had been no more than wishful thinking.

It made me feel big and bright and beautiful. I felt large and loud. When the sales girl grinned at my silly spanish, I had the urge to hoot like a great snowy owl.

You were probably thinking that we had nothing but fabulous adventures while we were away, but even we adventurers have to buy clothes and experience marked psychological disonance once in a while.

When I was about five years old, I remember looking through a fence into a yard near my house. There were all kinds of kids in there, climbing on a jungle jim, shovelling sand in a sandbox, and running through a sprinkler.

I kind of new the kid who lived there, but I was socially awkward and didn't know how to get his attention and get invited in, so I contented myself with observing the confusion of limbs and clothing and hair and giggles through the slats in the fence.

I noticed several of the children picking their noses, examining the finds on their fingers, and then eating what was there. I had not noticed this type of behaviour before, and I wondered why they were all so nonchalant about this disgusting activity. I thought that the benefit must be really good to outweigh the grossness.

I stuck my finger in my nose, dug around, and came out with a small, green booger. I couldn't believe that I was going to do what I was going to do, so I squinched my eyes tight shut and sucked the snot off my index finger as quickly as I could.

The booger was a bit slimey, which I did not appreciate, and it was also a touch salty, which I did like, but otherwise, its flavour was too bland for my tastes. As far as I could tell, it was still disgusting, and I felt this vague sense of shame for having eaten my own snot because the kids in that yard had been eating their snot. I was embarrassed for myself, and it burned hotly around my ears.

The Moral of the Story: Just because everyone else is eating their boogers doesn't mean you should be eating your boogers.

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"When Your Pants Begin To Go" by Henry Lawson