jetlag

Bag_pack

yes, "jetlag" just goes with the territory…some people get "hammered" and some people do not….i am one of those who suffer most from a time change…."jetlag" and the effects of time change is the one thing that kills my energy level which normally  allows me  a 14 hour work day…  and  4-5  hours of  sleep  is quite enough….

but my flight to london tonight should not be a  "jetlag" trip….usually the easiest of trips…..it is the travel with a total "flip of the clock" to say southeast asia,  which puts me down for a day or two…

i will not be able to post again until monday or so….i do have comments for "at home and abroad", "dancing"  and "family influences" which i may do today, but more likely next week…i am scrambling to pack now and i have never learned how to pack, so please be patient…which bag??  how much stuff?? hmmm, i just cannot get it right…

i will be at the Arles Photo Festival next week  and do hope to meet some of you there….my plan is to post from Arles, if good internet connections are available….

i continue to be overwhelmed by your letters….the thoughtfulness and writing skills of this readership are quite amazing by any standard….the  writings of all of you collected together would make quite a book….are we somehow making a book together???  well, let’s not think about it too much….we do not want to spoil the spontaneity of this  "moment in time" dialog…

soon my mind will be on boarding passes, passport control, long lines, catching up on reading, and the joy of seeing my bag on the conveyor belt …..please be of good cheer my friends  and we will chat again soonest….

20 Responses to “jetlag”


  • Greetings again David, my friend. I don’t know how you maintain such a busy schedule, and stay intact. But I do realize that is the nature of your work, and you are obviously having the time of your life. It’s nice that you’re sharing it with so many of us.
    Many thanks…….

  • Hey David, If you have not left yet bring your waterproofs, It’s as wet as a broke here.

  • david alan harvey

    harry…

    thanks for the tip….but isn’t “wet as a broke” pretty much guaranteed for good old london town??

  • So David, which camera bag(s) did you decide to take to London?????

    I got a small Timbuk2 messenger bag, but how do you pad it (or do you even pad it???)??

  • Hi David!
    glad to know you are coming to London, if tomorrow (sunday) you are around, and willing a cold beer (with this weather there is not that much to do!) give me a shout.

    Unfortunately on monday I leave on biz for a couple of weeks, damn!

  • david alan harvey is a roving art exhibition

  • Hey Dave,
    God is that all you carry? if so I am a serious over packer,i’ve been putting my arse on aircraft for a while now but allways is that nagging feeling that I could have travelled with less,maybe it’s a confidence thing ,more gear more options?
    As for jet lag I’ve allways found avoiding a night on the piss as soon as you arrive does wonders for your future travels
    How bout a post on how Nat Geo shooters pack and carry on assignment?
    Best and to the mrs
    Glenn

  • It always amazes me that people travel as much as they do, especially by airplane. I don’t travel well, I’m not sure why; I just don’t, that’s all. There may be any number of deep psychological reasons for this aversion to moving too far from kin and kith, hearth and home, cliché and platitude—that many of my nearest and dearest owe me a good-sized chunk of money comes immediately to mind as a reason for standing still. You can’t be too careful with relatives—most of them would skip town in a heartbeat if they knew I wasn’t around to keep them on the financial straight and narrow. But delving into the deep psychological reasons for my immobility invariably means shelling out at least a hundred dollars an hour for even a bargain basement Freudian shrink with springs popping out of his couch and an unwashed security blanket, and at that price the deep psychological reasons can stay in the deep; I am not sending this guy’s kids to college for a year just because I don’t want to leave the moldy confines of our happy little burg. That’s just not going to happen, no way.

    So, for the most part, I am stuck here. I wasn’t always such a stick in the mold, though. I have been to the Gulf Coast, for example, to Biloxi and the Redneck Riviera, back in the days when Katrina was not a name you would actually bestow on a little girl who’d never done anything to you—I was there for a brother’s wedding, which was a disaster in and of itself, but that’s another story entirely—and I was in New Jersey once, and I have been to Italy. That’s right, Italy, land of sunshine, classical antiquity, modern iniquity, and Machiavelli to explain it all for you, and I must say that landing at Rome’s international airport was a tremendous thrill for me. There’s just something about coming to a place that is different from the place you have known all your life that makes the trip all the more memorable. And when the place is Italy, a place you’ve read about and seen in pictures, television, and the movies your entire life, the thrill is all the more intense. Then things started to go wrong.

    It was not my brother’s fault, of course; he lived in Sicily at the time and I stayed with him, an arrangement that eliminated my excuse that I’d have no place to stay and couldn’t afford a hotel. The trouble really started on the plane over. I was wedged into a window seat in coach, which was small enough to begin with, and forcibly kept there by the two very elderly Italian gentlemen sitting next to me who spent the entire trip showing each other photographs of their grandchildren in Cleveland, Ohio, and by the immense tub of lard in the seat in front of me (if you’re reading this, fatso, yeah, I mean you). And I do mean immense; if Italy ever decides to compete in the world sumo championships, they should look this guy up—he’s a champion in the making. He had me pinned for eight hours by the simple expedient of moving his seat back and forcing my kneecaps towards the back of my legs.

    And there I sat for eight hours, crushed between time and matter (I did mention this guy was huge, right? I mean absolutely humongous; if the plane went down in the ocean he’d pop to the surface like a bar of Ivory Soap, he had so much fat on him), and then, to make matters even better, which is me being ironical, but I think you knew that already, someone in first class had a case of the sniffles. So by the time I arrived in Italy to see the land where Caesar ruled, Raphael painted, and Alfredo fettucinied, I had lost most of the feeling in the lower half of my body and had an incipient case of the flu. I was fine for the first part of my first day there; my first dinner of veal and pasta and some Italian vegetable, the name of which escapes me at the moment, was very nice, I thought, although the veal was just a little bit on the dry side along the edges; and then disaster, as it is wont to do, struck. I am not sure what the cause of this particular strike was; I don’t speak the language, after all, but there were lots of hammers and sickles on display and I suppose I could have saved a fortune on hardware and farming implements if I had any interest in hardware and farming implements. But I didn’t and I don’t, so I spent the rest of my first week in a foreign land flat on my back with a high fever and jet lag to boot.

    The problem with being flat on your back in a foreign land with a highly communicable disease is that there is nothing for you to do all day except be sick and watch satellite television, which was a very odd experience since almost none of the channels were in English, except, of course, for the BBC, and after a while even that grated on the nerves; the sports guys on the BBC don’t cover major league baseball, which left me in a cognitively dissonant state: I knew it was baseball season, but I could find nothing about baseball anywhere on the television. This, I think, only exacerbated my already weakened condition and led to a maddened continuous rush through the channels as I tried to find something, anything on the television showing a picture of New York. At length I had to settle for a financial news channel showing the floor of the New York Stock Exchange; it wasn’t quite what I’d hoped for, but when you are sicker than ten sick horses and in a foreign land to boot, you do not look a sick gift horse in the mouth, which is a fairly disgusting thing to do even if you and the horse aren’t sick. I could have made a lot of money if I’d bothered to invest in the market that week; I’m pretty sure I knew more about what was going on in Wall Street that most of the brokers.

    So there I lay, burning with fever, drinking Nyquil by the quart, and if there is anything that shows the ultimate benevolence of America in our fallen world, it is Nyquil, flipping through the innumerable channels available to the European satellite viewer. After watching a French panel discussion about comedy; at least, I think it was about comedy; no one laughed at all, although one guy managed to crack a smirk worthy of President Bush, so the show may have been about nuclear proliferation instead, I flipped to a interview with a Portuguese bullfighter trying to explain how the bull managed to pop a horn into his backside and then to MTV Germany; you have to wonder if giving MTV to Germans was really such a good idea; and then to three channels of the same guy wearing the same robe reading the same news from Dubai. From there it was off to RAI, the Italian TV stations, for Vivaldi concertos and game shows with a lot of pretty girls in showgirl costumes standing around doing nothing except being pretty girls standing around in showgirl costumes, which is nice work if you can get it, and hence to the local programming from there in Catania, and it doesn’t make any difference what language you speak, Sabina Rossi on Ev’viva la Citta looks good in all of them. And in the middle of the night, when the fever was at its height, there are always the soft-core porn ads from Brazil and from there to Polish television. Here I stopped, utterly aghast, and began to scream.

    I am usually a fairly calm person, all in all; the vicissitudes of life don’t usually get me down unless the Yankees’ center and left fielders run into each other at the wall and so allow the go-ahead run to score for the Angels in a game the Yankees should have won, but let’s not be bitter about what can’t be changed now, and so I turned to Polish television, doing so in all innocence, because it was the next channel after Brazilian soap operas and Swiss yodeling contests. I was violently ill, remember, and so I could not deal with the phenomenon before me with my usual aplomb and general acceptance of the usually silly human condition. I looked at the screen and began to scream because I knew I was dying, I was as sure of that as I am that the sky is blue and I knew that I had arrived with my sins unshriven at the hour of my death because I was, in the middle of a foreign land where no one on television spoke English, hallucinating that there was a Polish reggae band manned by Polish Rastafarians in Polish dreadlocks and smoking Polish ganja playing Bob Marley tunes in Polish on my TV screen. Convinced of my immediate demise, I screamed for a priest to hear my confession, terrified that I was going to meet the Almighty with mortal sin on my soul. Then I passed out; whether it was fear of damnation or the quart of Nyquil that caused the slump into unconsciousness is still a point of debate between my brother and me.

    I woke up late the next day feeling much better than a man who has just had a near death experience has a right to feel. The fever had broken in the night and while I was still sick, I was now officially on the road to full recovery. I tried to tell my brother about the Polish reggae band, but he told me that I was dreaming things, and frankly, I believed him. The next couple of days went well, and we went off to see the sights of Palermo on the other side of Sicily. I especially enjoyed the Capuchin catacombs, where the 18th and 19th century Palermitano elite are hanging on the walls, most of them looking as good as I felt during my first few days in Italy. On the day before I left, though, while I was just flipping through the channels waiting for my brother to get out of the bathroom, I saw them again. There really are Polish reggae bands, as odd as that may seem; it makes you wonder how something like this ever happened. It can hardly be some form of cultural reciprocity; I don’t have the facts and figures on this at my fingertips, but I would venture to say that polka bands are probably few and far between in Jamaica. I was able to put my mind at ease about one thing; I’m pretty sure those things near their mouths were not reefers; they may have been smoked kielbasa, for all I know, or simply very large microphones, but they weren’t reefers. It’s always nice to know that you’re not crazy, after all. It makes the whole day seem that much better.

  • Shuvo Jatra
    translation -> happy voyage

  • David,
    If you have a long layover on the way back in London and don’t want to sit in the airport, please drop me an email. I am very close to Heathrow and could pick you up and take you back. We could chill at my house, have a good meal, and send you on your way.

    Matt Jones (from the Look3 Festival)

  • Ha ha! I read this article and thought of you David…but its okay I know it’s really you!..anyway welcome to the British Isles, maybe you’ll bring some sun to us…it’s got to break sometime…surely!

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/6260210.stm

  • By the way I would love to see you do some work here (Britain or Ireland) I’ve never seen any from you. I’d love to see your vision of these isles. Maybe they don’t inspire you? I would understand, the light can be terrible.

    Cheers, Have a pint on me!

  • david alan harvey

    mike….

    sometimes my schedule does make even my head spin, but usually i have a fairly good pace…and all of the “busy schedule” is voluntary…there almost nothing i “have to do”, so that makes it much easier.. i.e. this trip to london is to pick up laura and take her to the arles photo fest, so i see nothing but enjoyment in both things…and a the end of it is watching the sun go down on the back deck with you and family….jetlag is a small price to pay…

  • david alan harvey

    asher…

    i use that timbuk 2 bag too….i use a tenba insert (415 i think) in every bag i use…

    glenn…

    i have always traveled light …2-3 bags max….well, i do not carry much camera gear (one bag worth) and then just clothes etc…now must also carry laptop etc, but that is easy enough…some natgeo photogs do carry lots and lots..the natural history photogs for example…i am the exception traveling with so little…

    but i will do a “bag story” sometime soon…

    gianluca…

    did not see your post until now and i suppose you have gone…too bad…but i return on sunday to london, after arles, for a few days…are you back by then???

    paul …

    you are correct…i have never done a story in the british isles…curious, since this is my blood background…i have never even been to ireland or scotland (my family heritage)nor done anything significant in england….i do not think it has anything to do with inspiration or the light..actually, i think the light would be totally interesting…

    it is just fate…i got sent off to the maya world in mexico by natgeo as my first “out of country” experience and got so wrapped up in the spanish/portugese/africa/indigenous americas cutltural mix, that it took me 30 yrs to finish it!!!!

    matt..

    i might just take you up on that, if our schedules coincide….

  • david alan harvey

    akaky….

    congratulations for having written the longest comment ever written in blogland!!! hunter s. thompson could not have done better and i sort of flashed back to “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” about half way through…that was a two cup of coffee story (morning when i read it) you wrote there amigo..

    by the way, where do you live?? and anyone can see you do not need to leave home to have an adventure!!!!

    great story ..this is turning into a literary magazine…..many thanks!!!

  • “I decided not to warn him about the bats. He would find out soon enough….”

    Fortunately David knows about the rain, its monsoon season here.

    Missing out on Scotland tho! The light has its moments but the people rock constantly.

  • Akaky, for someone who professes not to travel, you sure took me on a strange and magical trip!
    Out of country experiences are the things that really shake up your life, dare I say life defining, nothing is the same after landing in a strange and foreign land with a mission to accomplish. I was 30 before I got my first overseas gig and life hasn’t been the same since.
    One thing I’ve learned since s to take a little bit of your own life with you to a bit of music, a favourite book, photo of family something to set out and make some small space home.
    One thing that got me by in Central Asia ,especially Pakistan Where they are fanatical about cricket was a picture of Myself with Steve Waugh ,a famous Australian cricketer ,that damn photo just about got me into every place I wasn’t allowed into or ill advised to go to.
    “Ah you are Australian Mr. Glenn? Do you know Mr. Ricky Ponting?”( a cricketer)
    “No my friend, but I do know Mr. Steve Waugh”
    Produce the photo ,a quick photo of me and the border guard holding the photo of me and Steve Waugh, much hand shaking and Bobs your uncle ,I’m in!
    Be careful you don’t follow my example on the London Eye!
    Cheers Glenn

  • david alan harvey

    yes glenn…

    i have already thought of that london eye scenario!!

    well, you were slick enough to charm the pakistani border quards with your photo of you with steve waugh, but sounds to me like you “got slicked” on the london eye….

    but, by all accounts, both stories have a happy ending!!! good on you….

    cheers, david

  • Hi David,
    I am at the airport right now, waiting to fly to Shanghai on business, and won’t be back until the 14th, damn!
    I am on business, but I am trying to squezze few days free for me and photography.

    Ciao!
    g

  • david alan harvey

    gianluca…

    i will look forward to your shanghai work soonest….travel safe amico….

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