Posted tagged ‘B&B’

“I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.”

July 20, 2017

The weather has settled into monotony. Every day is sunny and hot. We reached the mid 80’s yesterday while Boston was over 90˚. The shade was bearable, but the sun was unrelenting. The only times I went outside were to bring Gracie to the yard where I sat in the shade and waited for her.

I did nothing yesterday and will probably do nothing today as well. A dump run is in our future but probably tomorrow. I do need to water the plants, inside and outside, but that’s it.

When I was a teacher, I traveled every summer, mostly to Europe, and went for three or four weeks. I traveled on the cheap. Go Europe was my travel Bible. University housing and hostels were my hotels as such. Meals were sometimes at bar happy hours where I’d nurse a single drink until I’d eaten my fill or at railroad stations which had kiosks with cheap sandwiches. I usually traveled with a friend. B&B’s were sometimes our stops mostly through Ireland, Scotland and England. I remember one in London, in Earl’s Court. The owner barely spoke English and played music quite loud from the kitchen which was next to my room. The song I remember best is Cielito Linda with the damn ay, ay, ay. I swear it was played over and over. My favorite B&B was in Dingle Ireland. It was over a grocery store. The woman was old. She entertained us with stories about guests including the Frenchman who didn’t know how to eat Corn Flakes and another who wanted a facecloth. She laughed at the thought that the face had its own cloth. Breakfasts were eggs, bacon, toast and coffee and sometimes a grilled tomato. The hostels were cheap enough but didn’t offer breakfast, but they had a value of their own. Hostels were where I’d trade books and information with other travelers. All these trips were cheap enough that I could saved enough money every year for a summer in Europe.

Last year’s trip to Ghana was expensive enough for a couple or even close to three trips to Europe in the old days, but I was perfectly fine with that. I enjoyed the lap of luxury as if I had been born to it.

“Life is about the adventures you take and the memories you make. So travel often and live life with open eyes and an open heart.”

June 23, 2014

The last few days have been gifts. The days are warm and lovely while the nights are cool for sleeping. Yesterday I spent quite a bit of time on the deck. Gracie was on the lounge all stretched out and napping. She does know how to enjoy herself. On the sports front yesterday was also a good day. The US tied Portugal at the World Cup though I really thought they’d be able to hold on to their lead, but I’ll take the tie. It was a great game. The Sox won it in the top of the tenth against Oakland when Ortiz hit a home run. He hadn’t had a hit the whole game so his timing was impeccable.

I went to the dump yesterday and wondered if they were giving something away. I hadn’t ever seen such traffic before. I even had to wait in line just to get in. Usually I go on Thursday or Friday, but I didn’t this week, a mistake I won’t make again.

When I was a teacher and didn’t work summers, I went traveling, mostly to Europe. I was gone a month or more and once, for my South American trip, I was gone the whole summer. Those were the days of backpacking and staying in hostels, university housing and even in the woods a couple of times. I traveled by bus or train and slept many times in my seat on the train and slept all night on the bus all the way to Edinburgh. Seldom did I eat in a restaurant. My travel companion and I would buy peanut butter and jelly or cheeses and cold cuts and loaves of wonderful bread and every meal was a picnic, but we’d sometimes treat ourselves and buy roasted chicken and some tomatoes for an elegant on the road meal. If we did stay in a B&B, breakfast would hold us until dinner time. We had to make sure our money lasted. I’d buy a couple of souvenirs and always sent a postcard to my parents from every country. I did that any time I traveled including through South American and when I was in the Peace Corps. The African stamps were the best, bright and colorful.

My backpacking days ended when I became an administrator and had to work summers. I’d only go to Europe for spring or winter vacation: one week and one country. I’d pack a suitcase and travel by rental car. It was like saying good-bye to the free-wheeling, go anywhere me and hello to an adult traveler.