Yesterday, I woke up early to a familiar, yet (in this instance) somewhat eerie noise – the sounds of a televised American football game: referee whistles blowing, the deeply-suave, cartoonish voices of sports commentators, and a dim background of cheering fans. With my head buried under a pillow, still trying to separate dream from reality, I thought, “Where am I?”
Sitting up, I realized I was indeed still in Kathmandu. But the blare of the football game trickling into my room had me second-guessing, and also hoping. Maybe if I followed the sounds I would find other sweet offerings from home, like some nachos, perhaps, or a buffalo wing or two. What if my friends were out there talking trash about each other’s respective teams while munching on guacamole? My excitement was building.
Shuffling out into the kitchen, though, I just found Travis sitting at the table, hunched over a cup of instant coffee and a bowl of muesli, streaming the Boise State Bowl Game on his laptop.
The disappointment was crippling.
Not only did I realize that there were no nachos to be had, but Travis’ laptop is robust enough to stream things off the Internet in Kathmandu?! Not. Fair.
It’s strange where our senses can take us, whether through familiar smells or sounds, and how they are powerful forces that root us firmly to a place. I am sure if the situation had been reversed and I had woken in my bed in Austin to the noise of roosters crowing, a million dogs barking, and women yelling in a foreign language it would have produced a similar sense of complete disorientation.
That said, I still want some nachos.