Socotra Island

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After hours of searching the internet highway and a pint of 190 proof vodka I decided upon traveling to Socotra Island, Yemen. This appears to be an ideal location for me. It was separated from mainland in Africa more than six million years ago, that remote island looked like the set of a sci-fi film.

Socotra’s incredible and unique biodiversity meant that there are plants and trees there not found anywhere else in the world, particularly bizarre are the ancient and twisted dragon’s blood tree and the bulbous bottle tree.

I quickly called the travel agency I also discovered online. I booked the cheapest flight from Tallahassee, Florida airport at $690 or $0.074 in bitcoins one way. The trip would take 16 hours and 32 minutes. It didn't matter because I would be drunk sleep for the last 9 hours and 17 minutes.

 When I got off the plane half drunk, will okay plastered. I thought that I had entered the Twilight Zone. I was expecting to be greeted like they welcome tourist when you arrive in Hawaii or even greeted by a few pygmy natives with bones in their noses in Nigeria. 

What I first got was a hot 104 degrees temperature and the landscape of a 1,003 Desert Rose (adenium obesium) which looked like a blooming elephant leg. 

Maybe that's why I keep counting them elephants in my unconscious drugged up mind back in my prison days. I also found Socotra's landscape had the ever strange and extremely rare looking Cucumber Trees. In addition to all the foliage there were over 120 species of birds and about 190 species of butterflies. I wasn't trying to escape on a nature hunt. This place was meant for some kind of peeping Tom bird watcher who join the Audubon Society. Not for some insane drunk inner city ex-con  like me.

I know one thing they better have a liquor store. Crazy looking butterflies everywhere! It reminded me of an episode of Gilligan's Island called "Man with a Net", when Lord Beasley Waterford, a famous butterfly collector, lands on the island searching for the world's rarest butterfly, the pussycat swallowtail.  

Never choose an afar away destination to visit when you’re drinking 190 proof Vodka and that's all I gotta and want to say about that. Thank you very much Forrest Gump!

They only had one bus from the airport that ran every 16 hours. Everyone spoke Arabic, maybe I should have listened and learned in Miss Meadow’s Arabic class instead of trying to steal Mary Lou’s expensive Gucci purse. 

I saw a parking lot full of one and two hump camels. I wondered how many miles an hour they travelled to get me out of that blazing hot sun. All I heard from every camel cab driver was the word "Almal" in which means money. I quickly learn the words "la Mal" in which means I got no money in Arabic.

I surmised that bitcoins hadn't reached this part of the world yet. Hold the phone, hold the non-working cell phone! Since Socotra is an Islamic country, there are no alcoholic beverages provided except at a five-star hotel in the big city’s mainland. It was highly suggested for me to bring my own alcohol if desired. Well I did bring along 11 bottles and after they got consumed, I was out of here before the monsoon season began or a giant Doo-Doo bird ate me or some Tyrannosaurus Rex dinosaurs. 

It took 8 hours and one bottle of 190 proof vodka before I arrived sore back and all at the Taj Socotra Hotel. The only thing I didn't like about my early 1950 decorum suite was the fact that I had to share the bathroom. You know those foreigners are sometimes as nasty as zoo monkeys.

I slept for majority of the first day in Socotra, those late-night nightmares coming to me all throughout the night. The first bizarre dreams I see myself running through a labyrinth and all of a sudden Kermit the Frog jumped out from a large bush wielding the exact same knife that Crocodile Dundee uses. I kept running until Benjamin Franklin jumped off a 100 dollar bill and shot the purple Kermit right between his beady eyes just before he tried to leap away. The second dream came immediately as the first dream faded away. I came back home from working over 12 hours as a live mannequin, where everyone in the glass igloo had become aliens. I saw my dad first and asked him what happened. He responded, I'm not your dad and pointed at the large railroad spike sticking out from his head, which gave me enough proof that at least he wasn’t human. I’m desperately trying to wake up when suddenly I was stranded in the middle of the  Atlantic Ocean in a small Aluminum fishing boat with Pinocchio and Jimney the Cricket and all we had to eat was alligator bites and chocolate covered bacon. For whatever reason, this dream terrified me so bad I just woke up. I was so shaken that I had to find out what those dreams could mean.

To dream about being in a labyrinth could represent your current mental outlook.  A maze is a frightening and confusing place. If in your dream you are trapped in a maze and are having difficulty getting to the end, then you need to stop and consider your current emotional and psychological status. What about the kite flying Ole Benny F. trying to discover electricity mean I asked myself? Benjamin Franklin dream implied an ideal that everyone had the chance to achieve the Jeffersonian ideal of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Well that pursuit of happiness made clear to me that I was done with dream interpretations.

 I fixed the sharing bathroom situation by putting an old wooden bucket in my hut, I mean my room. I couldn't remember signing up to take a boat trip to Shouab beach: a half day tour to discover the beauty of actually seeing blue unpolluted water. Seeing that clear water and white sands almost had me thinking about snorkeling. That thought quickly left my intoxicated mind when I see a group of talking dolphins lopping right next to the boat. I heard the tour guide say in perfect English that Flipper like dolphins sleep resting one side of the brain at a time. Thanks to its bone structure and its ability to hold air in the lungs for a long time, dolphins can rest underwater. However, they need to breathe regularly. Therefore, some degree of awareness is necessary and one side of their brain remains active, while the other part rests. I heard the exact words when I visited Sea World the only difference them dolphins was locked up in a water prison and they were trained like a elephants to stand on 2 legs. The only thing after that is, I heard myself screaming take me back to the outdated Ranch, I mean to the 2-star hotel.

The third or fourth day there I was awakened to discover that President Donald Trump was sending troops to Socotra. I'm like who in their right mind would bomb these 42,842 back in time people? Well, they probably were part of Isis. 

I caught the first plane smoking; besides, I was down to 2 bottles of 190 proof vodka. I did take a miniature dragon tree and a blood tree on my evacuation from Socotra for some odd reason. They just might come in handy one odd day.

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1 comment

Mehak Aneja
06:22 Jun 29, 2020

Brilliant!! Literally loved your story. Very nicely written. Would you mind reading my story and giving it a like and sharing your opinions on it?? :D


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