Please Don’t Make Me Drive Any More

No, we weren’t in Paris. And no, we haven’t been flying Russian airliners out of Egypt.

By the magic of delayed blogging, however, we are in Europe, and we’ve been here a month. Forget what I said a few weeks ago about working hard to get caught up with our blogs. I’ll blame all the driving we did this year in the states.

Take a look at this map:

Chuck and Lori's driving map 2015

The green lines show our road trips this year. We’ve driven almost neatly the perimeter of the Lower 48. That’s almost 20,000 miles. 29 states and the District of Columbia. Please don’t make me drive anymore. One of the things I like about Europe is that driving is usually an option.

We landed in London on October 14, attended the European Swing Dance Championships for a great 4-day weekend, then settled in for a week in Wells, UK. Here we ticked off 3 more cathedrals from our to-see list (by car, I might point out) before visiting friends in the Midlands then heading north to Cumbria. Ten days there and, of course, we rented a car. Well, technically, Susan and Randy–our visiting travel family–rented the car at the Manchester airport and brought it to us; they arrived hours late, jet-lagged, wet, harried, smelly, and looking as though they had been wrestling with goats.

Good Lord, what happened, we asked? 

We got stuck in Manchester roundabouts, they said.

Ok, I exaggerate a bit: they didn’t arrive smelly, and the goat-fighting would come later.

For the next couple of weeks we toured around Northern England and Scotland with Susan and Randy. We visited Edinburgh for the first time (it’s now on our return list and potentially one of our favorite European cities, up there with Amsterdam, Paris, and Rome). Randy and I went goat stalking, an epic adventure that entailed scaling a Scottish mountain in the cold, driving rain and sleet to take down a goat with our bare hands (only the latter part is exaggerated). Car-weary and goat-smelly we put Susan and Randy on a plane home after a couple of relaxing last days in Chester, England.

That fairly well catches us up to today, where I write this from a hotel room in Amsterdam. I’ve had to catch up on work and prepare for a long holiday week, but today we set out on a quest to explore some of Amsterdam’s smaller, quirkier museums. It’s what you do when you’ve been here 4 times before and have seen all the landmark museums (The Anne Frank House, Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum). We hope to have an interesting report soon. We won’t just forget all those cool places we’ve seen between Oregon and now, we’ll just blog them randomly. It’ll be part of our travel security regimen so nobdody knows exactly where we are at any time.

Are they in Croatia?? I just read a blog about Columbus, Ohio? No, I thought they were in California!

The easiest thing to remember is that we’re at If we don’t talk to you again before tomorrow, have a fantastic, wonderful, and drive-free Thanksgiving!

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