Cookie Smuggler Four shots of ouzo makes early morning strategizing a woozy challenge. Lesson of the road. Final night in Greece. Flight out in a few hours. Trying to figure out how to get pistachio cookies I bought on an island to survive reckless baggage handlers. Pistachio farmers on Aegina render their crop into every incarnation imaginable. Liqueur, soap, butter, bread, cookies, gelato, and of course bags of nuts. Well, they let me try this cookie they call a pistachio cigar. A chocolate crunchy tube filled with green pistachio butter. Think peanut butter, but made out of pistachios. It gets eaten, not smoked, in case the cigar name causes any confusion. Anyway, bought four cans, but they are not crush proof. Wrapping the cans in jeans really doesn’t help much. The only crush-proof part of my gear is…the hollow body of my acoustic guitar. Well, the strings are overdue for a change. They are not going to survive more altitude and humidity fluctuations in playable shape. They’ll sound like garbage, so they might as well be sacrificed to a worthy cause. Twisting metal tuning pegs. Prying up black bridge pins. Twang. Ping. Accidental notes get deeper, wobbly and unnatural before the string gives way and whips and snakes on its own. Each of the four cans fits snugly into the guitar’s sound hole. No wait. Two in, t-shirt, two more in, another t-shirt. Final t-shirt to secure them. Yes. Cigars in a guitar. Multiple people have told me this travel story. Except they were traveling from Cuba. Maybe it is from a movie, or it is one of those real-life tropes. Now I’ve got this story, too. Except mine are cigar cookies from Greece. But consider that these cookies are in plastic tubes with metal soda can tops. Some security agent scanning my guitar will see it loaded with four metal-capped cylinders with an unclear manner of tubing inside. Will they know it’s chocolate and pistachio not bomb casings and explosive putty? Will I ever bring home the flavor I tried to carry off that island? Time alone will tell. Goodbye to this room with its hard mattress, its unseeable biting insects, and balcony view of the Acropolis. On to what’s next. Get my book Odd Jobs & After Hours in audio, hardcover, or paperback by clicking here. It’s about drifting down the east coast of the USA chasing one sketchy, so-called opportunity after another.