Sarah, my traveling companion.On the plane to Mai's brother's wedding I continued my place in yet another Sarah Vowell book. I'm happy to believe Ms. Vowell will outlive me - which leaves the chance that I will always be able to look forward to her writing as I'm traveling.
Her writing always matches my traveling mood, especially as she delights in the remarkable coincidences of history which match the illusory visions of meaningful interconnectedness brought on by my travel bends. For example, she (re-)tells a story told by William Dean Howells of a chance encounter with a plaster cast of Abraham Lincoln's hands at a party by a subdued Edwin Booth. (Edwin was John Wilkes' brother and lesser light, infamy-wise.)
Edwin must have known that we was forever destined to be tethered to a madman no matter how well he performed as an actor. The universe occasionally conspires with a tweener glee and an eye for insult.
I expect to go to Eritrea some day, meet a farmer in its remotest parts, and hear from him the following: "Hey, didn't I see you play at Cafe Du Nord? Small world!"