Europe

(Few) Spanish Surprises

(Un)fortunately, this trip to Madrid and Tenerife proved relatively uneventful. I woke up with a sore throat thinking about the long flight to Madrid.  This wasn’t going to be easy. I rarely get sick, but when I do, it’s usually a pretty rough time. And the idea of having a cold at 36,000...

The Kennels of Amsterdam

The guy next to me on the flight from Cape Town was very talkative. At some point during the flight, he was complaining about his three hour layover, which prompted me to counter with the 11 hour stint I have here in Amsterdam. Apparently, another guy on the plane heard me because as I...

Reflections on Copenhagen

As I’m typing this, I’m sitting in the KLM Club at the Amsterdam Schipol Airport watching men standing in line for a service desk to zealously guard their frequent flier miles. My journey is about 38,000 miles. Jeeze. That’s a long way. Anyway, Copenhagen is marvelous...

Oh Copenhagen, How I Love Thee.

When I woke up this morning I had no idea where I was. As I stumbled out of bed I remembered when I stubbed my toe — hard — on the door jam of the bathroom. It seems like nearly every doorway in Denmark has a jam that’s at least 4 inches high. On average, I kick one...

Believe it or Not, it’s Copenhagen

As soon as I landed in Copenhagen, I was ready to head to the National Museum. I’d read about its collection and the interesting history of Denmark that it celebrates. So, I hopped in a cab, checked into my room, and was ready to strike out. I got directions from the front desk and...

Reflections on Paris

My time in the first city of this RTW adventure is coming to a close. Ironically, as I write this, I’m hearing what I write in a French accent in my head. The city has gotten into my brains. I must be candid. Paris is not my favorite. For me, it was pricey, unfriendly, and overhyped...

The Grand Rising Ceremony

This morning, I went to Versailles. It was impressive, to be sure. Louis XIV built a hunting lodge on the spot in 1624/25 because of abundant game in the area. Like any man, he really wanted the ultimate man cave. And, if you have unlimited resources, this is what you end up with...

Slow Down to Speed Up

Unless they’re getting exercise – maybe on rollerblades – it seems like no one in Paris is in any real hurry. Even the police max out at about 25-30 mph. Perhaps it’s because everything around them has been around for such a long time. They still call their oldest...

Strolling in Paris

I don’t know if you’re aware. But, here in France, they speak French. Before coming, I highly recommend doing one or more of the following (1) already know French, (2) learn it quickly, or (3) find a French-speaking friend to join you. I did none of these. So I barely know what’s...