I now have the available time and resources to travel where I will, but there are more risks than there used to be. It once was that you were safe so long as you did not venture out on an ill advised jaunt into bandit infested hill country. Now the bandits have come down from the hills and live among us.This is a long and thoughtful post on how the world is much more violent than it used to be. Quite frankly, I'm glad I had the chance to see so much of Europe when I lived there, because I'm not at all sure that I want to go back. Things are bad and getting worse.
I have walked through too many places where terrorists attacks have occurred. The Olympic complex in Munich, the London Underground, the Valley of the Kings in Egypt. I regularly pass through the Amsterdam airport where the infamous "underwear bomber" was helped onto a US bound plane on some sort of humanitarian ticket. I have driven past the Pentagon and have walked under the dome of the US capitol that escaped its intended targeting on 9/11.
I usually avoid politics in my writings. But part of the reticence to discuss the catastrophic implosion of Libya is that to do so would be an embarrassment to our Current President - who was gifted a Nobel Peace Prize for his anticipated diplomatic brilliance - and to our hopeful "President in Waiting", who was Secretary of State when the Libyan incursion was somehow, implausibly, deemed to be a safe and prudent action.
But these are the conditions that exist. This is the world we live in. The bandits are probably now in the Seven Hills of Rome.
Back then, I was living in Condition White. I went to all the tourist spots, dragging the kids with me. Now, I'd plan very differently. I'd also pay much more attention than I did then.