June 2, 2006
Most of the time, when we speak of baggage, we’re talking about excess. Like emotional baggage- who wants that? I, on the other hand, admit that I enjoy baggage. I like it so much that I wish mine had come to Iceland with me. It did not! I saw it in Boston, so I know at least it made it from Detroit to Indy and to Boston, but somehow it didn’t make it on my plane. So after traveling for about 20 hours, I was without shampoo, soap, contact case… not to mention tent, sleeping bag, gear. My other leaders (three of whom are named Ian) lent me enough to get through the night, and I hoped ardently that the next flight from Boston would bring with it two heavy backpacks with no person attached.
They did arrive this morning, with a pleasant-smelling surprise. My liquid soap bottle had leaked into the plastic bag wrapped around it, which then leaked into my daypack. However, after contemplating the next week with no tent, clothes, toiletries, or hiking boots, I was happy to wipe out my bag and rise off as much as I could. One of the other leaders, Steve, is a biochemist for a soap company, and he pointed out that Americans like big bubbles and lots of lather in their soaps and shampoos, so they’re actually formulated differently from other nations’ Dove shampoo. I think I will be quite a good example of that. I expect for the next few weeks, whenever it rains I will burst into mango-watermelon scented suds, which will be comical.
I´ve met only five of the other leaders so far (that´s 60% Ians for those keeping track), but today we head out to Skaftafell National Park to begin our training and meet our other leaders, some from Australia, Sweden, France, Spain, and the UK. And me.
All is good, Iceland is as beautiful as I remember it, and I have a big grin as I head off into the wilderness.
Thanks to all who sent me on my way with good thoughts!