Where to begin. Well let’s start by answering the question that I know Lemons readers are dying to know: How much did my overpriced glasses case cost (even though I have six of them at home?) Answer: Zero. I continued to use my tennis shoe as a case and opted to buy an overpriced 70-page spiral-bound notebook in Frankfort, Germany’s airport instead. I wanted a way to “keep track of days, expenses, […] random thoughts,” etc.
It may come as no surprise to Lemons readers but the length and detail that this journal became surprised me, the author. Turns out, I am also long winded with a pen in my hand. If something funny happened I said, “It’s goin’ in the book.” If something serious happened I said, “It’s goin’ in the book.” Even things that didn’t happen at all, they went in the book too. One day we spent a total of seven hours on the bus traveling to the next city but somehow I managed to find something to talk about, ten sheets worth! I told my seatmate Jess, “Look at all the pages for today, and we’ve done nothing!” That’s talent, to produce something from nothing. Around day five I began writing on the front and back of each sheet, otherwise I would have run out of journal before I ran out of words.
The finished product ended up a lot like LifesLemons (daily musings laced with my personality) but it’s got a lot more misspelled words, things crossed out, and arrows leading to additional thoughts and comments not thought of at the time it was first written. Sure the journal is dry at times, “Today we traveled to Pisa, saw a tilting tower, (apparently it’s famous or something.)” but I tried to break up rambling about our daily activities by throwing in some fascinating facts, “How many hams per hour a Para Ham Factory worker can perform the smell test on with his little horse bone wand.” (500 in case you’re wondering. ) The writing itself is not super elaborate like, “vineyards yonder yield sweet fruits which later appear in thy glass goblet as wine” nor is it too…simple-minded like, “Today we tasted chocolate. It was good. I had fun.” There’s not too much added “fluff” either (trivial junk added just to fill the sheets and give pages that crispy texture which produce a crinkly sound when turning the page.)
The diary, like the trip, had something for everyone. Adventure; “We had a good three hours of free time to explore the city before dinner” Mystery; “During dinner, roommate received a call on our tour guide’s cell.” Suspense, “Who was it?” Romance; “It was an Italian soldier boy, that the roommate met during the said free time, asking her out for drinks later.” True story. Not kidding. See? You’re hooked. More later.