Italy 2002 Trip Report, Day 2

The second in a series of transcriptions of my experiences traveling with my wife and her family in Italy. The originals were scribbled on whatever pieces of paper were handy and are presented here unedited.

25 Mar 2002: Lost in Avellino—just like two years ago. We miss the turn several times for Calitri—it’s not posted—and give up for the night. The Hotel Jolly, while twice the price of the hotel we were to stay at in Calitri, is as good as a reasonable European chain can be. Dinner in hotel restaurant unremarkable except for a bottle of wine from Feudi [di San Gregorio].

A whole new Web(b)

Congratulations are in order to my good friends Don and Kim Webb, who have announced the birth of their first child, Sarah Madalyn (Maddie). I don’t have pictures this time, but maybe soon.

Don Webb has been one of my closest friends since college, when he and I sang together in the Virginia Glee Club. He was best man at our wedding, but since his move to North Carolina we haven’t seen nearly as much of him as we’d like. Here’s hoping we can change that soon.

Covering the globe, one confluence at a time

The Confluence Project: ” The goal of the project is to visit each of the latitude and longitude integer degree intersections in the world, and to take pictures at each location. The pictures and stories will then be posted here.” Thanks to Shel for pointing this out. So far, out of the 12,757 confluences (latitude and longitude intersections) out there that occur on land there have been 1611 documented by the project. This is a pretty cool idea—and seems to be pretty well executed.

Italy 2002 Trip Review, Day One

This is the first in a series of transcriptions of my experiences traveling with my wife and her family in Italy. The originals were scribbled on whatever pieces of paper were handy and are presented here unedited.

24 Mar 2002: 8 something pm. Off to an interesting start. Arrived at airport 5ish. Lisa and her parents had difficulty with their e-ticket—it took an hour to straighten out. We spent some time talking to the nice ticket lady and found out there had been a system changeover. We expressed lots of sympathy—being IT people, we swapped stories—she is a trainer for the new system! Shortly thereafter we got a complimentary upgrade to World Traveller Plus. Go BA.

Subsequently we had to go back over and get our boarding passes. Then we sat in the Sam Adams Bar and caught our breath.

Watching Lisa’s dad figure out the features in his seat is a lot of fun. The Man Who Wasn’t There on TV.

Slackjawed in Capri

I was going to transcribe some of the notes I scribbled on hotel stationery and a Statue of Liberty memo cube purchased from Newark Airport today, but I forgot to dig them out of my luggage before I left the apartment today. So here’s a photo of Lisa and me from Capri to tide you over.

Lisa and me in the Augustine Gardens in Capri, telling her mom how to use the digital camera.

We’re trying to tell her mom how to use our digital camera, which partly explains my look of slack-jawed yokeldom. Or it may be, as Mark Twain stated in his short story “Niagara,” a general phenomenon:

Any day, in the hands of these photographers, you may see stately pictures of papa and mamma, Johnny and Bub and Sis, or a couple of country cousins, all smiling vacantly, and all disposed in studied and uncomfortable attitudes in their carriage, and all looming up in their awe-inspiring imbecility before the snubbed and diminished presentment of that majestic presence whose ministering spirits are the rainbows, whose voice is the thunder, whose awful front is veiled in clouds, who was monarch here dead and forgotten ages before this hackful of small reptiles was deemed temporarily necessary to fill a crack in the world’s unnoted myriads, and will still be monarch here ages and decades of ages after they shall have gathered themselves to their blood relations, the other worms, and been mingled with the unremembering dust.

There is no actual harm in making Niagara a background whereon to display one’s marvelous insignificance in a good strong light, but it requires a sort of superhuman self-complacency to enable one to do it.

Home again

Well, we’ve returned. We have been up for at least 24 hours apiece. Italy was wonderful. I am only now recovering from a two day bout with some horrible gastric thing that made me miss the papal blessing in Rome.

There was more that I wanted to say, but since I can only remember it as being dictated to me by a thirty foot tall alien who spoke with pheromones rather than audible speech, I think I’ll postpone it until tomorrow.