Start Your Engines

route map
I'm doing the purple & blue route.

In under one week, summer begins.  I’m taking a hiatus from work, a break from writing my dissertation (don’t tell), and I’m going to ride a big blue bus all over Europe.

My goal is not to hit nineteen countries in eight days and return home with a suitcase full of souvenirs.  I also do not intend to spend my whole trip on a bus, seeing the sights through a window.  This trip is going to last six long, glorious weeks, starting in Paris, down to Croatia, and back up to Prague.

After weeks of poring over the Busabout brochure, to the point where I could probably recite the whole thing by memory, I have put together an itinerary, my camera is charged, and I’m ready to go.

But first, five more days of work, packing, and patience (something I’ve never been good at).  In the meantime, I spend most of my time daydreaming about the trip.

Here are some of the things I’m most excited about:

  • Belgium – waffles, chocolate, and beer.  Please don’t tell me Belgian waffles were invented by the Americans.  I have been looking forward to the real thing ever since my first continental breakfast at a Holiday Inn.
  • Sailing the Croatian coast for Eight Whole Days.  Even better – relaxing on the boat while someone else sails it.
  • Neufswanstein Castle in Germany.  I’ve been salivating over this castle since I was little.  Hopefully, they’ll let me move in.  And maybe teach me how to spell it.
  • Paris, Paris, Paris.  The first time I went overseas, I went to Paris, and I’ve been in love with it ever since.  It’s been ten years since I last saw it, and I can’t wait.
  • The bone church in Prague.  I went to the city once before, had no idea this place existed, and have been kicking myself for missing it ever since.  It will completely creep me out, but I can’t not go.

The way I see it, this is my job:  have fun, and write about it, take photos of it, and film it.  Then put it on this blog so you can see it, and hopefully decide to do it yourself.

My goal?  Besides making it back to London in one piece, I am going to try something new in every destination.  This might be a cliche, like eating snails in France, or something more abstract, like training stallions in Vienna.  You never know.  Anything can happen.

So I welcome your suggestions, ideas, and comments.  I’ll be talking to other travelers, hostel owners, and locals along the way, so if you’ve got a question about St. Johann, Split, or anywhere else on the route – let me know.

Now I’d better start packing.

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