It was dusk on Sunday, June 12, 2011, as I literally and figuratively collapsed. 

My mother & I left our homes at 9:00 AM on Saturday.  As mentioned in past blog entries, two years ago I traveled for two full days from Australia without even getting a headache.  Now, at age 27, I felt terribly crook a.k.a. sick even before my mom and I arrived in Athens, Greece.  Aside from exhausted, I felt disappointed.  When did I transform into the worst traveler?  When I was in middle school, I used to fly from Ohio to California, to somewhere foreign, back to California, and finally back to Ohio every summer.  I could pass out in the middle seat of an airplane 30 minutes after take-off.  However, on this particular journey I slept in 30 minute increments for two hours at best.  I couldn't make my neck feel comfortable despite the complimentary airline pillow and wadding up my jacket to use as a second pillow.  On solid ground, I still felt like I was being bounced around in the jet.
During our layover at Rome, Italy's Fiumicino (pronounced "few-mih-chee-noh") airport I was incredibly nauseated and abstained from anything that wasn't a Saltine cracker.  Now that I was able to lay down my luggage and body I was starving, but mustered up the energy to do what every deliriously tired traveler does:  throws open the curtains to confirm you survived the journey & are seeing your destination in living color.