these things just don't happen

London Travel Blog

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I know a number of my family members check this to see how I'm doing, where I'm staying, what my mental state is so I thought that I would give you an update.  I fear, however, that this is not going to be all that upbeat.

My friend Chris is dead.  He was shot in the back of the neck and died instantly or so I have been told.  I have a number of friends who have not been named by the news outlets (which means I will not name them here) who have sustained serious, but not life threatening injuries.  One of the three that were not released from the hospital today will need many weeks of therapy. 

Chris was my roomate for the entire journey through Turkey and would have been my roomate for at least a third of the rest of the trip though the middle east had it not been that we were joined by a few people in syria, assuming I had stayed. All of the people that joined us in syria were injured during the attack.  Chris was an affable, intelligent, easy going, man.  We got along well, so well, that some of the members of the tour thought that we had been old friends even if at that point, we had only spent a few hours together.  And who knows, maybe we were old friends.  At one point during the trip, we had to impose a talking curfew since we had spent the better part of an evening just bullshiting until the wee hours.  For some people, it takes awhile, maybe a lifetime to get the measure of them, in Chris, I knew I had a good friend.  It didn't take long, just being around him and you knew it.  He had a passion for life and a passion for travel and a fondness for a proper pint. 

I called his mom today.  She was glad I called.  I didn't know what to say.  Is there anything anyone can say?  I plan on attending the funeral, once the body has been returned to the country and they know what the arrangements are.  I've been sort of all over the map emotionally speaking.  I was thinking this morning about how if I had cancelled this part of the trip outright, had I not gone to turkey, this would just be a bad situation, a bad circumstance to other people.  I've been thinking about if I had stayed, how I know I would have been in this group, with these people, with my friends and then who knows.  Luck, circumstance, destiny, someone watching over me, I really don't know.  What I do know is that there are people out there who believe that this is something that furthers their goals, furthers their aim and for them I feel profoundly sad.  It's difficult for me to imagine anything that is worth having, seeing, experiencing, if the price of admission is the blood of a friend who's only crime was attempting to see and experience it too.
Luna says:
we love and miss you.
Posted on: Sep 06, 2006
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photo by: ulysses