Field of Science


A stranger in a strange land

As a world traveler the Phactor has awakened in many a strange place.  But having bummed some floor space and an inflatable mattress from our city friends following our pig-out dine-out, the Phactor awakened to realize he was truly a stranger in a strange land.  Not to brag, but the view from our toilet is one of the best there is, looking as it does out across the expanse of our garden, and since nothing else is within view, the blinds stay open.  So it is rather disconcerting to wake up and be able to wave to a counterpart just awakening in the adjacent high rise.  He doesn't wear pajamas and decides to roll over and go back to sleep.  His wife has nice rose pink PJs and she leaves him to sleep in.  This is the world of high-rise human fish bowls designed to bring out every ounce of voyeurism and/or exhibitionism you may harbor.  Five up and three over a blonde lady in a white robe checks out the morning view of Lake Michigan, steely green gray and choppy.  Two over and one down makes no pretenses about your privacy; a telescope sits by the window, undoubtably to watch the birds on the decks of the yachets in the yachet basin below although this just isn't the season for that type of bird watching.  Oh, pink PJs lady is back to awaken no PJs fellow and mets with no obvious success.  Two down and four over a tyke plays with some toys.  While the chances of ever meeting or even recognizing any of your observational subjects is low, this fish bowl world is very disconcerting for a country mouse like the Phactor.  How funny to be more comfortable and at ease in a tropical jungle than in a big city high rise in the urban jungle.  Two over and five up a lady opens the blinds to greet the morning sun, but she is not appropriately dressed to greet polite company.  Is this just part of the fish bowl life that takes some getting used to just as some city visitors find the "wilderness" in view of our toilet disconcerting?  A day of this each year is about as much as the Phactor can stand.  Wonder where we'll eat next year? 

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