What I Did (And Didn’t Do) On My Summer Vacation…

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My intention was to go all the way around the world, one ticket at a time.  At first, I was going to start in Ireland and work my way southeast (sorta:) touring my way through the UK and then Amsterdam and gradually get to the  mid-July gig in Italy that I had already committed to.  Then make a couple of stops elsewhere along the way to Australia and New Zealand, then Hawaii perhaps and then tour my way back across the US to New Jersey.

Well, it didn’t quite work out the way I had intended, for a number of reasons…

First, because of my engine exploding while in Boston, and then hurting my back trying to dig out of the two blizzards there this winter, I didn’t manage to get out of Dodge (well, in this case, New Jersey:) until a day or so before the Italy gig.  That left me in a bit of a ‘situation’ as to where to go from there.  Do I skip the UK and all things now northwest of me and continue southeast or do I backtrack and then turn back about?

Well, as I sat there pondering under the unrelenting still north of theTuscan sun, my choice became obvious…. this ‘cool ocean breeze of a Jersey girl’  had to find somewhere with a breeze of any kind to do my pondering.  So off to Amsterdam I went.  I spent a good deal of quality time visiting with my dear old Jersey Girl friend and musical mentor, Wendy Sheridan, and her husband Joris and their dog Mimi.

While there, we talked about old times in Asbury Park and the fun we had playing at Mrs Jays among other places, played some songs, took a lot of lazy boat trips through the suburban canals, and Wendy even dusted off her jewelry making skills to whip up a few exquisite pieces for me to take on my journeys 🙂 …and she introduced me to a TV show called “Game of Thrones”.  Ever heard of it?  I think it was a very well made series and I ended up watching a marathon of all 5 seasons!  But, I also think an alternate and equally fitting title for the series could be “Breasts and Beheadings.”

Anyway, after about a month of limited exercise and much indulging in food and drink, I also felt the need to get some intense exercise and detox by doing 4 days of Bikram Yoga in a row at a place in the center of Amsterdam.  I’m thinking I might try and do that in every country I visit, just for the fun of it.  I’m still looking for ways to stay in peak physical shape while traveling about.  Not quite there yet.

Since (in my mind anyway:) I was in the area, and still waiting for Italy and the south to cool off and Australia to heat up, I thought I’d stop off a little further west and see my friends in England,  so I hopped on the train in Amsterdam over to the Stena Sea Cruise Ship from Hoek Van Holland to Harwich, England for a fabulous day cruise across the North Sea.  Then a bus to Liverpool, a subway and train through London down to Basingstoke to visit with my friends Maggie and Micky and soon after Ashley (Ghastlybrainwig) for a ride on the Thames.  And that’s where I am today.

My intention was to continue on to Ireland to have a look about and do some radio interviews in preparation for my return for my next trip around the world, but as it turns out, I need to return to New Jersey by September 11th to feed my mother’s cat while she goes off to Portugal!!

So rather than make a clockwise trip around the world, I’ve somehow made a counter-clockwise tour around Europe and the UK!  Just as well really.  It was a good recognisance mission to figure out what to bring and more importantly, what not to bring and to pay attention to not only the climate itself in other countries, but the political and financial climate as well and make more educated decisions the next time around.  I will tell you more about those things and much more in the coming blog posts or this post will end up being a book!!

The point here is that I will need to come back to NJ in just a few days and feed the cat, clean the salt water aquarium, tie up some loose ends, get a credit card with a chip in it (very important!!), upgrade my technology, and carry a lot less stuff next time around!!  That said, I enjoyed my time abroad a lot and learned and laughed a lot too along the way.  I’ve already set my intention to continue on with the adventure by booking my return flight to England in just a couple of months from now and hopefully this time, I will be better prepared to make it all the way around the world!  And hopefully, be much better at staying in touch with you so you can join me along the way!!  Talk soon, stay tuned….