“Enjoy being smelly!” My niece asks questions about the camping life

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Lacey and I, in Madrid last year

 

“I read the blog post yesterday; loved it!   I have two very important questions related to that…”

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We’re off again! Our North American road trip begins

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Our new car, parked at a south Texas rest stop on the day we started our journey

We encountered an enormous thunder storm rolling across the plains as we neared Davis Mountains State Park in West Texas.  It was awesome to watch the lightning in the distance.  The storm was on full display, and, since the land stretched out far before us, there was nothing to impede our vision of it.

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Paris, France: The (naked) sculptures of the Louvre

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This is one post in a series of articles about our visit to Paris.


When I told my mom I was writing about our time in Paris, she asked, “Are you going to talk about the naked men?”  She was referring, of course, to the collection of sculptures that we saw at the Louvre, which, yes, did include quite a few nude male subjects.

“I’ve told all of my friends that there were lots of sculptures of naked men, and they look at me like I’m crazy, so now I can show them.”

Of the many fascinating artifacts we saw at the Louvre, the thing that most stands out to mom is the naked men.

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Antibes, France: Drinking “the Green Fairy”–absinthe

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La Fée Verte (“The Green Fairy”–artwork inside La Balade absinthe bar)

 

Dale and I were intrigued by the idea of trying absinthe, an alcoholic spirit that up until recently was banned in many countries.  There’s a mystique surrounding this drink, also called “the Green Fairy,” a nickname referencing the drink’s green color (and no doubt thought up by someone who was more than a little schnockered at the time).  It supposedly had hallucinogenic–perhaps even dangerous–effects on its users, and the most famous artists and writers were drinking it, in part because of its mind-bending properties.  How could we pass up the chance to try this beguiling drink when we had the chance?

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Ja, Bier! The wonders of drinking German beer in Germany

 

What we said when we saw how cheap beer is in Germany (also the generic name brand for all kinds of goods, including, obviously, toilet paper).
“Ja!”  –What we said when we saw how inexpensive beer is in Germany (also the generic brand name for all kinds of goods, including, obviously, toilet paper)

The last two posts have been downers.  It’s true.  It took me over a week to write the article about the Holocaust, so that meant hours each day thinking about some pretty tragic stuff.  And then our last post, in which I wrote about the assassination of a President, well, that wasn’t very jolly, either.  So suffice it to say…

I need a drink.

Or at least a blog post about one.

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Barcelona’s funky Christmas traditions: Caga Tío and the Caganer

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Celebrity Caganers.  Yes, that is Darth Vader, along with a stormtrooper, V, and Superman, and yes, they are pooping.

So, a question: how often do you express gratitude for your bodily functions?

The Catalonians of Spain do so with such enthusiasm that they incorporate it into their holiday celebrations.

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Camino del Norte, el fin (Part 1): Finisterre and Muxía

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Muxía
November 6, 2015

It was fitting that we would spend our last day in Spain visiting two of the places where many pilgrims choose to end their Camino: the beautiful coastal locales of Finisterre and Muxía.

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Camino del Norte day 3: Meltdown

October 3, 2015
Deba to Markina: 15 miles

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It was bound to happen at some point during the hike: total meltdown.

All the PMA that I had channeled on the previous days wasn’t going to get me anywhere today.  Not meditation, not smiling, not listening to the wind flowing through the branches or the birds singing in the trees.  Uh-uh.  None of it was working.

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Camino del Norte Day 1: Here we go!

First day on the Camino del Norte in Spain

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October 1, 2015

Day 1: San Sebastián to Orio: 11 miles

Today we started hiking the Camino del Norte, the northern route of the Camino de Santiago, in Spain.  This journey will take us anywhere from 4-5 weeks to complete.

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