Tango Diva : Travel Stories for Women, by Women

July 11th, 2008
Traveling with a Changing Body…

In my twenties, I never suffered from car sickness nor altitude. Like the world’s most fabulous mountain goat or coca plant, I traipsed through the highest Andes in Ecuador laughing derisively at the poor saps who hid in dark hotel rooms vomiting and suffering searing headaches.

Well, the joke’s on me! At the fringe of 35, my body is changing tremendously. It totally sucks.

I just got back from a paltry 6000-ish feet in non-exotic Colorado, and Divas, let me tell you, my first night was NOT pretty. That headache that was complained about so wretchedly in those Andes visited me the first night (champagne after dinner haunting me!), and my skin puckered and twitched like mummy wrappings under a dry moon.

And perhaps you’ll recall that fateful car ride with Hottie McRestaurant with whom I shared a memorable moment barfing out his private car door on the Kentucky state freeway?

Welcome to my new body, friends—vulnerable to twisting roads, for whom altitude is like Kryptonite. WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING TO ME?

And then there’s ice cream. As of two months ago, I can no longer eat it. Out of the blue, just like that! One minute I’m a gelato goddess; the next, a tummy teetotaler in the face of 31 flavors… that’s the scoop on a scoop!

Divas, am I crazy or has this happened to any of you? Isn’t it enough to get out the map and learn the topography of a new continent without having to look inward to discover my own new, and certainly not improved, territories???

I can only imagine what it’s like for pregnant travelers. A woman’s body is the most elusive country, the most unpredictable journey!

I feel totally stupid now being like, “I’d love to join you on the slopes. What did you say the elevation was?” Or, “Wouldcha mind if I sat in the front seat? I get car sick…” And worse yet, “No thanks. You enjoy your triple dutch fudge chocolate sundae. I’m fine.”

Who is this pathetic creature?? And what happened to that magnificent mountain goat ready to take on the twists and turns of life from the backseat of any bus that life throws her? I tell you, she is no more. A moment of silence. A tincture of Dramamine. A Lactaid pill. Is this living?

* * * *

A quick word on The Women. Have you seen this oldie but goodie movie? I was enraptured. It’s the original Sex and the City—a black and white bonanza of an all-female cast with the likes of Joan Crawford, Norma Shearer, Rosalind Russell, Joan Fontaine and more.

These women gossip behind each other’s backs, catfight, try to steal husbands, wear fabulous clothes, and deal with life, love, tragedy, comedy…

I learned that women of that time period (1939) had to go to Reno to get divorces, and there were all these ranches and motels set up for them. Totally wild to know! I totally totally loved this movie, to the point that I am going to overlook, file away, gloss over a very bizarre bit of dialog. Tell me what you think:

Mrs. Moorehead: “Well, cheer up, Mary; living alone has its compensations. Heaven knows it’s marvelous being able to spread out in bed like a swastika.”

Huh? What was that? That’s one hell of a simile, sister.

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