July 22, 2009



Traveled 5,006 miles (that's 8,056 km) by plane.
Arrived at the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris on April 28, 2009.
Stayed with the La Brosse family in the eighth arrondissement for six weeks.
Attended classes at the Institute building on the Rue Saint Merri, just across the street from the Centre Pompidou.
Walked in and out of the Metro countless times.
Meandered their way through at least 20 churches and cathedrals.
Relaxed in approximately 10 parks and gardens.
Visited more than 25 museums and nearly a dozen castles.
Stood gazing at the endless blue on half a dozen beaches.
Explored a cave.
Attended a ballet at the Opera Garnier.
Watched a performance of Ionesco’s hilarious La Cantatrice Chauve at the Theatre de la Huchette.
Enjoyed one piano performance, a string quartet, and an incredible medieval vocal group.
Dragged their way through the Louvre on four different occasions.
Rode on a boat along the Seine.
Wandered among ancient Roman ruins.
Held faithful through the three hour Ascension Day Parade in Brugge.
Watched an outstanding performance of Les Miserables at the Queen’s Theatre in London.
Stayed overnight at more than 30 different hotels and hostels.
Saw a Jason Mraz concert at Le Zenith in Paris.
Stood still for over 2,000 images and videos on my Nixon CoolPix.
... and probably thousands of other photos on 26 other cameras.
Visited: France, The Netherlands, Belgium, England, Scotland, and Italy (that’s six countries).
And did it all in style.

So when I arrived in Paris that first day and realized that I had not packed any socks and was only equipped with the pair on my feet, I decided it would be a good thing to let these faithful grays have an adventure of a lifetime. And they did.

Sure, it’s gross. My friends told me so time and time again. In every store, they would not-so-discreetly motion towards tempting packages of fresh socks. But I held faithful. I figured no one can say they spent 65 days in Europe with only one pair of socks. Besides me.

(Just don’t tell anyone that 80% of those days were spent wearing sandals.)

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