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Tales from My Travels ~ Don Parker The story of my travels around the world on the working cargo ship, MV Rickmers Jakarta By Don Parker, Georgetown ON In November 2005, at the young age of 77, I embarked on the trip of a lifetime, lasting in all about six months ~ as a passenger on the working freighter, MV Rickmers Jakarta, [First chapter in Vol.28 No.1-Autumn 2014, p.43]

Chapter 8, Part 1 (continued from Vol. 29, No. 3)

Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2005: How should I write up to-day? Yesterday, I was a rebel. To-day I am an international criminal, perhaps even a terrorist, most definitely. In the opinion expressed by the Captain to the Belgian immigration authorities, I am a ship-jumper! This morning, I let myself sleep in; I was tired from the last two days of tramping. I went down for breakfast and no one else was there. That’s OK, I got my breakfast into me, then went back up to my cabin to get myself ready for a trip to Hasselt, a place I visited in 2003 via the MV “ISA,” said good-bye and tot ziens to Stephan, and got on my way. When I got down on the dock, one of the cargo surveyors introduced himself and offered me a lift in his car to the railway station. I gladly accepted. It saved me about half a mile of stumbling along over cobble stones to the port gate and then on to the bus stop. It also saved me a Euro in bus fare. So off I went to Hasselt. It is often said that one cannot go back, and that is what I learned to-day. Although it is only a little over two years ago that I was here before, there was much I couldn’t remember or recognize. I had forgotten how large Hasselt is, especially the train station, and I had forgotten how to get to where I wanted to go, so I retraced my steps and took the next train back to Antwerp while enjoying the ride once more. Once back in Antwerp, I looked up an e-café and, once I got the system figured out, I sent a short message home. Next came searching for a “Bio” store or, as we say, a health food store. I asked for directions at various places but without much success until Bingo! - I walked into a likely store and was able to get almost everything I was looking for. As mentioned earlier, the food on board is not the best

and it is mainly fried which I don’t like and I do my best to avoid it. As a result, back in Houston, I loaded up on organic stuff and have been doing so ever since. [Important side note: The times I am writing about are almost a decade ago. Now it’s 2016 with all the dangers of GMOs lurking almost everywhere. If you don’t know what GMOs are, view at least one of the following documentaries. 1) Seeds of Death, 2) The World According to Monsanto, 3) Food, Inc., 4) Seeds of Deception, and 5) Dr. David Suzuki and GMOs.] Following are some pics taken in Hasselt or Antwerp, one contains a puzzle which I will leave for you to solve, while the second is for pure entertainment. Could you play a role in either of the two situations? One requires athletic ability (right): The next photo pertains to stonemasonry. There are four ‘true’ masons in the photo yet we see five. Obviously, one of the ‘masons’ is a fake… can you identify the fake one? (photo, left) I thought this was quite amazing… There was a bite to the wind that day, but this fellow stayed perfectly still as he posed as one of the masons. This was in Antwerp. Back to Hasselt for a moment: While walking along, I came upon a statue of a hand. Hmmm. That’s not much to photograph, but… a group of young girls who appeared to belong to an acting organization of some sort, came along. I asked them to pose for me on the hand, which they willingly did. Ten girls on a strong hand! (photo, right) To be continued. VOL. 30, NO. 1, AUTUMN 2016

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Dialogue Vol.30, No.1 digital edition  

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