It is really cold today. It has been less than a month now since I booked my next trip.
On my last trip my old reliable large suitcase met it’s last days from the cobble-stone sidewalks of Rome. That’s right I have to move on with life and break in a virgin suitcase on this trip.
My new suitcase is slightly larger and a harder case. I bought it at the Zellers liquidation sale. It’s biggest problem is there is only one outside pocket. I’m undecided still on whether or not to by a new dangly thing. My last one was given to me buy my old friend when I had forgotten my previous on prior to my first WordCamp trip.
On an interesting note to me anyways, I was cleaning off my dresser and under the pile of junk was my dangly thing. I tried guessing what was in it as it felt unusually bulky. I thought it might have been the baggage tag for my last Toronto trip. I was wrong. (Even though some people think I would never really say that.)
The tag in my dangly thing was the luggage tag from YSJ to FCO via YUL. (Saint John to Fiumicino (near Rome) via Montreal).
Personally I find Rome to be one of the worlds worst historic cities. From all the thieves to the difficult sidewalks to the crazy drivers to the very long lines almost every city in Europe is better than Rome. Though perhaps my views would be different if I ever found true love in Rome. We will have to see May 6-8th.
My last difficult goodbye was in London last fall. It was so difficult when you are in such a close group of people on a bus tour, knowing that you will likely never see any of them again to say goodbye.
This one in particular was hard for the main reason I was extremely tired. That day we started the day with an early departure from Amsterdam to try to catch the 1PM ferry in Calais.
When I should have been getting some well needed rest after an incredibly active day of walking many kilometres rather that trying to translate Dutch to take the street cars, the worlds most annoying creation decided that it was time for no one to sleep at 3:30am. That annoying creation was a damned rooster. Although I could probably sleep over the sound of a rooster in this instance, it was several dozen of those buggers.
The last live performance I saw was Legally Blonde: The Musical at the Savoy in London. This was the first time I went to a show in London. I bought my tickets at a little kiosk on Charing Cross Rd.. It was a nice sunny afternoon, I was going to see an afternoon movie but for some reason I decided not to. I think the main reason was I has so much left to see in London and I seen a sign that morning for the Transport for London (TFL) museum and since I love subways I decided that was too important to miss.
I was so thrilled with my purchase and they even gave me a map of where to find the theatre. So after a quick-lunch and email check at the Burger King, I was off to find this museum from memory and some moderately accurate street directions. When I then saw something “shiny” (metaphorically). It was a little stair well to a Ray-Ban designer shop. I when in and tried on every pair. Things appear more magical when travelling.
Then I found the museum and it was 100x better that I imagined the museum to be. It was a second london gem that interested me by surprise like the H.M.S. Belfast that prior to the day before I had not known existed.
After I when back to the hotel to drop off my new souvenirs and to dress more formal for the theatre. When I got off the tube at Charring Cross I seen the map at the station to get general bar rings as it was about a 5 minute walk. I kept walking and started to question if I had gone too far then I saw the bright pink glow around the bend from the large sign.
I quickly get in created and find my perfect centre seat about 8 rows from the stage about 20 minutes before showtime. After 5 minutes an usher comes and explains that the Ticket seller double sold the same seats and that in typical London hospitality I was given a new seat one row back. Then the show started and was such an amazing musical in such a fashion that held it’s own only differing slightly from the movie storyline and incredibly well acted. It was also really pink.
As the year comes to an end I usually come up with a long post about the year that has been. Plinky suggested only on sentence per month so here goes.
I went to BC. I learned about caregivers. Learned how to program Macros in Microsoft Excel. Lots of sports and trips to Fredericton. I went to Toronto. Started walking a lot more than ever. Went to Montreal and New York City. I got really, really bored and booked a trip. Went on a last-minute camping trip to 10 European Countries. Got better from travel illness. Started taking it easier and planning more. Started doing new things, like translating WordPress to Canadian English and Operation Red Nose.
Last month my trip to Europe was a big spur of the moment trip that had very challenging air travels with all the delayed flights. But when I was in Austria deciding to go rafting was a huge enough risk. As we were being rushed, on the dark and rainy day, to get changed and that I need to lose some more weight and the suit was so tight that it was harder to bend I was not able to zipper up my wet boots, so they were quite loose. Add to that I have not actually swam in about 10 years, and I was not a very string swimmer back then.
About 5 minutes into the rating trip the guide, asked me to jump into the water and then swim back to the boat to practice safety. All that was going through my mind at that moment was how cold the Alpine water would be, and my glasses falling off. Without thinking much further I was underwater. I also had not gotten a good breath of air either. It was slightly difficult and took what seemed like forever to decide what way was up. Fortunately having a life jacket on I determined the direction I was floating was up and it was right.
Then as I reached the surface, I was so relieved that I had air again and that I could actually still swim. Then as a started to swim to the boat, I realized that the boots were too loose to swim. I had gone to the gym mostly cardio so my legs were good to swim, so I had to use only my arms. I finally made it to the boat fairly quickly but as I tried to pull myself into the boat but had no arm power left but the others pulled be in fairly easily.
The rest of the trip was amazing and fun. I definitely do rafting again, this time I would need to get a little fitter on my arms and practice a little swimming first. Also make sure my boots fit properly.
The Seven Hills campsite was one of my favourites, it had the awesome showers in the cabins that had the full body sprays. Although, camping was crazy as the ground was very rocky and hard to put the pegs on.
One difference about this site over others is that you have to use these pre-loaded cards to buy stuff. Now this seems all in well however on the night you leave most of the people I knew would empty the cards at the super-amazing bar, and Rome is one of the heavier drinking spots that I have been to.
Interesting enough the article also goes on to state, “Contiki said the tour group had continued to Venice.” Now although Rome is a heavy drinking spot. The Fusina Bar at Camping Fucina in Venice is more so. They have the Amnesia drinks for about 8 Euro that go down way to easy.
It must be really hard on the Contiki staff to actually lose a camper in this manner. Usually people just get left behind when they partied too hard.