It has been just over a month (five weeks) since we all piled into a Super Shuttle to start our trip around the world. First some things in numbers… It’s been 35 days, I’ve slept in 12 different beds, touched soil in 12 countries, had 47 beers I’ve not yet had (or at least not yet recorded in Untappd), spent more hours with all of my family that I had in the proceeding 3 months, experience a high of 36C (97F) in Athens and a low of 7C (44F) in Caherdaniel, Kerry, Ireland, worked about 40 hours, flown about 20,000 miles, driven about 2,000 miles, and walked about 60 miles… and though not quantitative, I’ve showered far fewer than 35 times and I’ve smile more often (I believe unrelated).
Reflecting on these facts, it is no wonder that the last five weeks feel much longer than any other I’ve ever experienced. I predicted that it would take about two months to realize that we’re really traveling the world for a year. It’s been a blur, but it is hard to recognize what’s happening. I don’t believe I’ve fully realized that this will continue for another 11 months; I know it to be true, but it is as if I don’t know what that really means.
I had no idea what to expect upon departure, but not knowing what to expect is far from having no expectations. It’s quite challenging to remember all that has happened and reconstruct my expectations from how what we did missed the mark. So challenging that I’ve been mostly unsuccessful. I, however, am content with that. The blog posts and the pictures we are avidly collecting serve as a reminder of everything that this trip encompasses. I suppose I’ll have the rest of my life to reflect.
Yestreday we travelled from London to Amsterdam. It was a long trip made quite a bit longer by an almost five hour delay on the Eurotunnel. We walked from Piccadilly Circus to Victoria Station, took the Gatwick Express to Gatwick airport and picked up our car (inexpensive parking, easy London access and avoids all the rush hour driving traffic), then drove to Folkestone to catch the train. Only we spent almost five hours sitting in the parking lot; that sounds awful. I will tell you, I had nowhere else to be, the weather was beautiful (warm with a breeze) and I was very grateful to be stuck prior to entry into the tunnel rather than on a train in the tunnel as the poor saps were earlier that morning. We got to France around 2000 instead of around 1500, stopped in Dunkirk for dinner and rolled into Amsertdam around 0030 this morning. We had to wake the kids and walk over a mile to our houseboat and the owner wasn’t around anymore to help us out. Keys found; premise entered. It was a bit of adjustment to the Friday night night-life (until about 0300), but sleep was had and all woke well.
In the light Today the party is gone and a treasure of a village remains with a beautiful and active market on our doorstep. We fetched fresh breakfast and ingredients for a fresh dinner and I’m going to spend the remainder of my day relaxing on a fantastic house boat on a canal in the Jordaan area of Noord-Amsterdam.
It’s somewhat ironic that even while working with Circonus on the trip, I get confused and frustrated to find people not online to collaborate with only to realize later that it is Saturday or Sunday. The days of the week truly have no meaning. But today is Saturday, and it actually feels like a Saturday. I don’t have a care in the world and I’m just going to cook some handmade pasta for the family, drink some wine (I already drank my beers) and chill. Amsterdam, at least right here, right now, is the ultimate chill.