Browsed by
Month: June 2016

Running with the Bulls

Running with the Bulls

Running with the Bulls in pamplona

As I embark as a pilgrim on the famous Camino de Santiago, I have the privilege of returning to Pamplona, Spain.

3 years ago, on July 13, 2013, I came to Pamplona for the Festival de San Fermin & to Complete Bucket List Item #13 Running of the Bulls.

It was a great adventure filled with 1st time experiences like going to Spain, meeting people from Australia & New Zealand, Running of the Bulls, travelling Solo, and many others.

 Though this time I walk through Pamplona for different reasons, there is still an energy of those celebrating the festival de San Fermin (which is running July 6 to July 14).  So below, is a simple photo journal of several of my personal experiences in Pamplona.  If you ever have a chance to experience this festival, I hope that you go!  It was truly a remarkable time filled with adventure!

Running with the Bulls in Pamplona is definitely on my Bucket List now! #RunningWithTheBulls Click To Tweet

The Symbol of a Pilgrim

The Symbol of a Pilgrim

The scallop shell (in Spanish: concha de Vieira) has, over the past centuries become the recognized official symbol of the famed Camino de Santiago.  It can be seen throughout the pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela.  Sometimes it is engraved on posts, sometimes painted on signs, and through some of the more populated areas, as part of their official street signs or emblazed into the road.  This has been done throughout most of the Camino in order to guide pilgrims along the way.

Not only is the scallop a guide throughout the journey, but it has also become a symbol of the Pilgrim themselves.  Often the pilgrims (peregrinos in Spanish) will obtain a scallop shell at the beginning of their walk.  They then sew it to their clothing or pack or wear it around their neck to identify them as a pilgrim – to locals and tourist alike.

But why the Scallop Shell?

Symbol-of-the-camino-de-santiago-SpainOne of the biggest reasons perhaps is the fact that scallop shells can be found on the shores in Galicia, near the end of the walk. Maybe pilgrims were looking for a souvenir to take home with them to commemorate their walk or even to prove to others the success of the walk from areas like France or Belgium.

Even though it may have started as a token of remembrance to the pilgrim, over the centuries the scallop shell has taken on symbolic meaning in relation to St. James the Greater (who is the main inspiration for those on pilgrimage through the Camino de Santiago) and his death.

There are two versions of the myth surrounding the origin of the symbol of the scallop with regards to the death of Saint James, who was martyred by beheading in Jerusalem in 44 AD.

Version 1: After James’ death, his disciples shipped his body to the Iberian Peninsula to be buried in what is now Santiago. Off the coast of Spain a heavy storm hit the ship, and the body was lost to the ocean. After some time, however, the body washed ashore undamaged, covered in scallops.

Version 2: After James’ death his body was mysteriously transported by a ship with no crew back to the Iberian Peninsula to be buried in what is now Santiago. As James’ ship approached land, a wedding was taking place on the shore. The young groom was on horseback, and upon seeing the ship approach, his horse spooked, and the horse and rider plunged into the sea. Through miraculous intervention, both emerged from the water alive, covered in scallop shells.

For those non-religious pilgrims camino-de-santiago(an oxymoron if you will) as well as the religious, the scallop also has come to be a metaphor for the actual map of routes itself.  Imagine (in the photo to the right), that the grooves in the shell, which meet at a single point, represent the various routes pilgrims traveled, eventually arriving at a single destination: the tomb of the Apostle, Saint James the Greater in Santiago de Compostela.

Will I be carrying this symbol of the Camino?

Of Course.

About a month ago, I was contemplating how to get my scallop shell, I knew that I didn’t want to buy it at the beginning of the walk like a tourist because this isn’t your typical tourist vacation.  I wanted it to be as authentic as possible.  As I was deciding where I was going to go snorkeling in Florida, a sudden memory flooded me of my late Grandmother, Armen Gamble (aka Grandmom).

I'm Learning why Pilgrims carry a Scallop Shell on the Camino De Santiago! #Camino #CaminoDeSantiago Click To Tweet

See, although I loved my Grandmom, her life and story remain somewhat a mystery to me.  We often related more to our maternal side of the family growing up due to the quantity of children that were our age that were around to play with.  However, despite my lack of intimate knowledge, I suddenly remembered how she collected shells and proceeded to contact my cousin and Aunt – sure enough they had one perfectly preserved scallop shell left that belonged to my Grandmom.  It had been wrapped in tissue paper and tucked away in my Aunt’s drawers.

Grandmom Gamble's Scallop

When I asked why my Grandmom collected shells at all, she said, “Grandmom was born in Atlantic City, NJ and lived one block from the beach on Ventor Ave. this is where and when she was the happiest. When the Great Depression came, the family moved to Washington DC. She was about 10 years old and it was a very big change. They were extremely poor and living conditions were difficult – bed bugs etc. but when they could, they made their trip to the “shore” to have a vacation – to refresh their spirit. My mom knew how to budget and stretch a dollar and support 2 kids on her meager income which included sending us to Catholic School, piano lessons and scouting. She always took us to the beach one week out of the year. She went to the beach to renew her spirit – she was so happy there. She just loved the ocean so much – it was just fun to see what “treasures” we could find.”

So with my symbol, a gift from my Grandmom, I hope that the Camino will also renew my Spirit!

To Walk and Pray

To Walk and Pray

the walkA pilgrimage is when a traveler, typically on foot, journeys to a holy place of special significance, usually to a particular religious belief.  As they walk to this church, shrine, or location of importance, the pilgrim will often find that the route in itself becomes a form of spiritual path or retreat for their spiritual growth.

So, where does the 490 mile walk of the Camino de Santiago take a pilgrim?  What shrine or location of importance is found through this experience?  Does the pilgrim have to pray and to whom?

The answer is found in the name of the actual Camino de Santiago de Compostela.  Santiago which translatedsaint-james-the-greater from Spanish to English is Saint James.  He is the patron saint of Spain.  But who is he?

James, son of Zebedee (died 44 AD) was one of the Twelve Apostles of Jesus. He was a son of Zebedee and Salome, and brother of John the Apostle.  Often, he was known as James the Greater because there was another younger apostle named James, son of Alphaeus (aka: James the Lesser).  According to the Gospels of Mark 3: 17, James and his brother John were given the nickname Boanerges, which means “Sons of Thunder” by Jesus.  In the Gospel of Luke 9: 51-56, the two brothers showed their fiery temperament as they called down fire from heaven to destroy a village which had refused them hospitality.  Also, James was one of only three apostles whom Jesus selected to bear witness to his Transfiguration. (The Transfiguration is when Jesus became radiant in glory upon a mount as he met with Moses and Elijah.)

So, how does one of Jesus’ Apostles become the patron saint of Spain and the focus of an entire pilgrimage across the northern part of the country?

Well according to legends, post-resurrection of Jesus, St. James preached the gospel in Iberia as well as in the Holy Land.  The Virgin Mary appeared to James on the bank of the Ebro River at Caesaraugusta, while he was preaching the Gospel in Iberia. She appeared upon a pillar, Nuestra Señora del Pilar, and that pillar is conserved and venerated within the present Basilica of Our Lady of the Pillar, in Zaragoza, Spain. Following that apparition, St. James returned to Judea, where he was beheaded by King Herod Agrippa I in the year 44.

stjamesmartyrdom

St. James’ remains were then supposedly carried by boat from Jerusalem to northern Spain, where he was buried on what is now the city of Santiago de Compostela.  In one story, after James’s death, his disciples shipped his body to the Iberian Peninsula to be buried in what is now Santiago. Off the coast of Spain, a heavy storm hit the ship, and the body was lost to the ocean. After some time, however, it washed ashore undamaged, covered in scallops.  This lead to the symbol of the Camino de Santiago, the scallop shell.  St. James’ feast day is now celebrated in Santiago de Compostela on July 25.

So with this history of the Apostle James the Greater attached to the Camino, does this mean I will have to pray while walking?

If you were walking a pilgrimage like the Camino de Santiago, do you feel like you should pray? Click To Tweet

I will try.  In the past few years, though I consider myself a Catholic, I have become tired.  I don’t reject Catholicism, however I seem to look elsewhere for God rather than in his physical “house.”  Therefore, I have been lazy and at times purposeful, about not attending mass or praying.  With this said, the Camino de Santiago (aka The Way of St. James) is largely considered to be a spiritual event, among other things.  Therefore, I have decided to commit a portion of my daily activity to prayer while walking The Camino.  With this commitment, I have chosen to do a Novena to the Apostle St. James and ask for his intercession.  A novena is a series of prayers that are said for nine straight days, usually as a prayer of petition, but sometimes as a prayer of thanksgiving.

saint-james

My hope is this will help to renew my faith and spirituality.  So starting on July 1, 2016, each day for 9 days straight, my goal will be to open my Novena, focus on my personal intentions of that day, focus on the intentions of another, pray the novena for both our intentions, and then walk in reflection of that daily prayer and intentions of the day.  After the first 9 days, I will then take one day off before I begin the Novena again.  This cycle, (9 days of prayer with 1 day off) will be repeated a third time so that each my 30 days of walking will be filled with prayer.

Will this actually happen? Only time will tell.  But I hope so and with your help I think I can add prayer to this pilgrimage.  So with that said, I am asking for 2 things from each of my readers.  1) Please Pray for me on this pilgrimage!  Not only for me to physically finish but to be spiritually present. 2) I need 27 intentions.  Please contact me with your intention.  It can be for you, your family, or anything weighing on you.  This intention can be asking for help or perhaps thanking God for recent Blessings.

You can get your intentions to me in several ways:  You can leave a comment on this article below, you can leave a comment for me on Facebook by Clicking Here, you can email be from my Facebook page, or for those who personally know me call, text, or email me personally.

Obviously, I would love 27 different people with intentions but I will happily take them from anyone who wants to give them.  They of course will be private if you want.  Just send them as soon as possible.  As I receive them, I will write them in my private Camino notebook that will be travelling with me.  I will also reply with the date, that I will pray for  your intention, so you can join me on that day in prayer if you wish.

Buen Camino!

 

 

the Camino de Santiago

the Camino de Santiago

pilgrim of Santiago de CompostelaFor the last several months, I have often been asked, “Where is your next adventure?”  My reply has been, “I am going on Pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago!”

This is then always followed up with, “Why are you going on Pilgrimage? Are you a Pilgrim?”

My Answer: “Am I a Pilgrim?  I don’t know!”  “Why am I walking the Camino? I am not sure.”

According to Wikipedia a pilgrim (from the Latin peregrinus) “is a traveler (literally one who has come from afar) who is on a journey to a holy place. Typically, this is a physical journey (often on foot) to some place of special significance to the adherent of a particular religious belief system.  Typically, it is a journey to a shrine or other location of importance to a person’s beliefs and faith, although sometimes it can be a metaphorical journey into someone’s own beliefs.”

On Monday, June 27th, 2016, I will be embarking on a perhaps one of my greatest adventures, a pilgrimage if you will. This is to fulfill Bucketlist item #109) Walk the Camino de Santiago from France to Santiago, Espana.

camino-de-santiago-camino-de-frances-02The Camino de Santiago, often called the Way of St. James has several routes of different lengths.  The traditional and most common route, known as the Camino Frances, is a 490 mile walk from Saint-Jean-Pied-de-Port on the French side of the Pyrenees to Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain where it is believed that the remains of the Apostle St. James the Greater are buried.

Many take up this route for many reasons: as a form of spiritual path, retreat for their spiritual growth, to discover their past or reveal their future, or in hopes that a miracle touch them or someone they love, and many other reasons.  It is not a hard hike like those who have backpacked the Appalachian trail nor is it a seemingly impossible climb like reaching the peak of Mt. Everest.  However, it is a test of physical, mental, and spiritual perseverance and overall will.

Walking the Camino de Santiago is definitely on my Bucket List! #Bucketlist #CaminoDeSantiago Click To Tweet

So why on earth am I going to take on a 490 mile pilgrimage that will require me to walk for 30+ days?  Am I looking for a miracle?  Do I need some sort of revelation?  Have I lost God?

I guess there is a little bit of “Yes” in answer to all of those deep questions, but I also keep coming back to quote by J.R.R. Tolkien:

“Not all those who wander are lost,” a line from the poem All that is gold does not glitter,

written by J. R. R. Tolkien for The Lord of the Rings.

It was a line that Tolkien wrote twice. Tolkien first wrote in reference to Aragorn who seemed to wander, but his journeys were always to a purpose.  The second time he uses it, is repeated by Bilbo at the Council of Elrond. He whispers to Frodo that he wrote it many years before, when Aragorn first revealed who he was.

In recent years, I have found a purpose, my Bucketlist Project.  It has offered me an outline of many things – opportunities, adventures, and discoveries that are hopefully leading me down the path of a good life.  The world seems a very large place and I can’t believe that I am meant to only live it in one tiny section for my small period of existence only to have it end with no experiences, no education, no adventures, or no self revelation of purpose.  But where do I start?  Where do I find these lessons?  How do I experience these adventures that will help me learn who I am?  For me, the answer has become my Bucketlist Project.

Though I am walking the Camino de Santiago to fulfill my bucketlist, I am really walking it to find out more about myself.  Will I discover anything at all?  Only time and about 490+ miles will tell.  I hope that each of you will follow along as I walk this path and join me in perhaps my greatest adventure to date. Perhaps this will become a wonderful chapter in the life of my Bucketlist Project.

the path of the camino de santiago

Have you ever gone on the Camino de Santiago or any other pilgrimage before?  Perhaps you have just been on a local retreat?  What have you discovered about yourself or the world?  Please let me know in the comments below so that I can use your comments as points to ponder on my walk.

 

 

 

 

 

Does music inspire you?

Does music inspire you?

kurt vonnegut

“What would be your walk up to bat music?”

This was the question posed to me and several others at a New Orleans Zephyrs minor league baseball game on a beautiful mid June night at the Shrine on Airline.  Most of the others came up with interesting or fun song titles but I suddenly went blank!  I sat there pondering this question for the rest of the game while critiquing the current batters choices as they came up to bat wondering why on earth they chose a specific song and trying to figure out the ultimate song to announce the coming of the Great Eric to the Plate!

But alas, I could not come up with a “now at bat” song and tried to forget about it.  That was until a couple of days later when I was watching WWE wrestling and listening to all of the wrestlers’ “entrance” music.  If I was heading down the ramp to do battle with Andre the Giant, what song would get me all fired up to make the long walk to meet him?  Again, I was blank!

Music has been important to sports like baseball games ever since “The Star-Spangled Banner” was played at the start of the 1918 World Series.  With little ditties like “Take Me Out to the Ball Game,” it was a nice filler for breaks between innings while people would purchase their “Peanuts and Cracker Jacks.”  As boxers and wrestlers have used their “entrance music” to get them and their fans all fired up for victory, baseball players have followed by blasting their walk up or “now at bat” music in hopes of inspiration and success!  Even pitchers have gotten in on the action with their “out of the bullpen” music.  This is perfectly portrayed in the 1989 movie, Major League as they announce the entrance of pitcher Ricky “Wild Thang” Vaughn!

 

So what is it about music that gets people fired up and excited?  Why does it inspire people to pursue success and complete major feats of adventure, strength, and skill?  What is it about music that perhaps reignites that fire in someone to overcome all the odds and achieve their goal?

What Music gets you inspired to chase your dream or bucket list? #bucketlist #bucketlistinspiration Click To Tweet

Well, there are millions of documented studies out there that can explain this phenomena better than I can.  But in short, some of the studies out there have discussed how music floods the brain with a chemical called dopamine. Dopamine is the chemical in the brain associated with pleasure, motivation and reward.  Other studies have shown that there’s actual evidence that your brain waves are indeed affected by the music you listen to and depending on the tempo of the song, you can create alpha and theta waves that will stimulate inspiration and creativity!  But again, this is well beyond my knowledge on the subject.  I just know that music is and has always been the soundtrack to my inspiration in pursuit of many of my Bucketlist items!

So why am I stuck determining a “Now at Bat” or “Now to the Ring” song?  Perhaps there are too many songs from which to choose? Surely there must be one song that inspires me.  I just couldn’t think of one, so I decided to ask others.  I posed this question to several of my friends:

” I have a random but very interesting question. You know when baseball players go up to bat or when wrestlers or boxers or introduced from the back and they play their entrance music that keeps them all fired up and jacked out of their minds with energy? My question to you is what would be your entrance music into the WrestleMania ring or a title boxing match or when you come up to bat at the World Series?”

Below are their answers:

  • “Music has been a big part of my life. When I got really really sick the song that got me through the most painful procedure (3 Spinal Taps ) post operatively was Bittersweet Symphony by the Verve.”  ~Mana’Olanakeiki Alo
  • “Believe by Mumford and Sons.  It means to me just to know ur still alive and never give.” ~Alex Arechavaleta
  • “I love Another One Bites the Dust by Queen.  That driving beat motivates me to do anything.  When we were cycling Africa, I’d put that song on during the final stretch of a very had day and it got me though the final kilometers.  I got into camp with a smile on my face and my head bobbing to the beat.  Freddie Mercury had the best voice in Rock n Roll, that bass line is fantastic.  You cant help but be ready to take in the world when you hear it!” ~Deb of The Planet D
  • “Bouncing Back by Mystikal. It’s about coming back stronger when you get knocked down.” ~ James Folse
  • “This may sound a little unique, but seeing that my music background is in classical, I would have to say Chopin’s Revolutionary Etude Op. 10 no.12 in C minor. It has a lot of momentum and power and always gets me pumped when I hear it. His Ocean Etude Op.25 No.12 in C minor is another good one for the same reasons. They are both very aggressive pieces, you can feel his anger and wrath when you listen to them both. Something about these pieces makes me think its time to put my game face on!” ~August Bailey
  • “I love “lose yourself” by Eminem. The lyrics of this song made me want to take my shot. The excitement, the emotion; everything comes together and you make this decision to do something you’ve dreamed about. The feeling is amazing, and you know that “success is the only mother$#@in’ option, failure not”. It just sums the process up so perfectly.” ~ Zachary Smits
  • “Mine isn’t a typical jacked up anthem. It’s something that reflects my whimsical side yet for whatever reason, gets me moving. It’s root beer rag performed by Billy Joel.  I picture if my grandfather had an iPod when he was a youngster, this would probably be what was on his workout track. And that makes me happy. Plus the speed of it makes my feet move significantly faster when I’m on a run.” ~Joseph Elfer
  • “I think my song is Right Here Right Now by Jesus Jones because I love being in that moment.  The adrenaline, the build up to it…that is the most fun to enjoy it…and to make the most of it.  The Son says Right Here Right Now, there is no other place I rather be!!  I love it!” ~Mark Firmin
  • “William Tell Overture.  It reminds ‘me’ of when I was a youngster and full of piss and vinegar!” ~Mark Snider
  • “My entrance music theme song is Imperial March by John Williams.  Once you leave the locker room, you already made the commitment to reach your goal, now you have to focus on the details of how you’re going to reach that goal, you need to focus.  Imperial March is slow, steady, and relentless.  When you come out the locker room you need to lay a solid foundation and make good plans to reach your goals.  This song helps me focus on setting myself up for success.  The Death Star was not built in a day, by people who rushed into the project.” ~Nicholas Kidder
  • “Fighter by Christina Aguilera.  This song is the embodiment of life experiences. Everyone goes through ups and downs, but this song lets me turn those experiences into personal strength.” ~Sarah Smits
  • “The song that motivates me is See You Again by Wiz Khalifa.  I love the Fast and the Furious movies, so that song really gets me.  It makes me strive for more!” ~ Cris Salas
  • “What a Wonderful World because it has always meant a lot to my dad and I.  When I hear that song I think of him – someone that has had more than his share of hardships but never quit trying or smiling, someone who can do anything and who motivates me to keep going even when I want to give up.” ~Darcee Snider
  • “Rich Kids by New Medicine no question about it.  If you listen to the song you just know.  Its kind of a punk rocker song but it’ll motivate anyone to get up and move!” ~ Ali Salas

As you can see, many songs motivate people in many different ways.  It is interesting to ask this question to people cause at first they offer up something funny or trite but after some digging its amazing to find out their song and even more amazing to find out why that song moves them!

So what did I finally decide on my song?

I think the song that drives me is “Remember the Name by Fort Minor.”  I love the lyrics of the refrain because it fits every goal I go after:

This is ten percent luck
Twenty percent skill
Fifteen percent concentrated power of will
Five percent pleasure
Fifty percent pain
And a hundred percent reason to remember the name

So what would be your “Now at Bat” or “Entrance” song?  Let me know in the comments below!

A Louisiana Safari

A Louisiana Safari

Have you ever dreamed of going on a wild African Safari?  Hell Yeah!  Global Wildlife Center Safari

Oxford Dictionary defines a Safari as “an expedition to observe or hunt animals in their natural habitat, especially in East Africa.”

Growing up reading Zoo Books has inspired many to follow in the footsteps Hemingway or President Roosevelt and fulfill their dream of going on safari.  Who wouldn’t want to take such an epic adventure?  What prevents people from doing so?  Well, usually it is the cost and time to travel to Africa that seems to throw the proverbial monkey wrench in people’s dream to explore such venues.  But what if you could take a day trip and spend less than $40?  Well that is exactly what we did!

Part of my bucket list is #200) Know my home State of Louisiana.  I added this item to my bucket list because often people dream of worlds far away but ignore great adventures in their own back yard. Being born and raised in Louisiana, I figured that I had seen and done most of the major attractions in my home state.  But after much research, I learned that I wasn’t even close.  Therefore, I took it upon myself to find some of the greatest secrets hiding in my own back yard.  This search led to the discovery of a real life safari in my home state of Louisana at the Global Wildlife Center Safari!

Thus #200) Know my home State of Louisiana: P) Go on Safari at the Global Wildlife Center in Folsom

My tour guide at the Global Wildlife CenterThe Global Wildlife Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation that was established in 1991.  Located in Folsom, Louisiana about 1.5 hours from New Orleans, it is a 900 acre preserve with over 4,000 animals free roaming on premises.  They currently house giraffes, camels, watusi, mesopotamian deer, antelopes, zebras, rheas, mules, alpacas, kangaroos, and something called a Beefalo among many other animals. The property is beautiful to say the least and is a great adventure for the whole family.

When you arrive, you immediately enter the visitor center/gift shop and obtain your tickets.  Tickets start at $17 for adults and $11 for children under the age of 11.  Tour sign ups are usually completed on the hour and within 10 to 15 minutes you are loaded up on safari wagons that are pulled by slow moving tractors.  It is an excellent tour run by local young adults who provide a vast knowledge of the animals, their environments, and a bit of fun humor along the way.  For our experience, the safari ride itself lasted about 1.5 hours which felt like a great return on our investment.

I want to Go on Safari at the Global Wildlife Center in Folsom, Louisiana! #GlobalWildlifeCenter Click To Tweet

The tour is definitely educational but it is also part petting zoo, as you have the option to obtain a large souvenir cup of food pellets for about $2 or even a family size bucket for $30 to feed the animals as they roam up to the wagons.  This was as much fun for the kids as it is for the adults.  To feel the horns of the monstrous watusi or to pet the many deer, you must be on guard as they hustle you for your pails of food.  a Private Pinzgauer

If you feel like splurging, there is also the opportunity to take a tour in a Private Pinzgauer.  Named after an Austrian breed of horse, these former military utility vehicles can accommodate up to eight guests, and this 4×4 can go places our safari wagons could not!  These private tours  are priced around $35 per person for at least an hour.

Whether you take the Private Pinz tour or you jump on the safari wagon, make sure you bring plenty of water cause it gets hot out there.  They are very accommodating and have no objections, I recommend you bring your own personal water bottles to combat the safari heat!

So as you can see, adventure can be found everywhere!  Through research online, I have discovered that many places across the U.S. offer similar wildlife experiences.  Don’t let the distance of Africa deter you from a once in a lifetime Safari adventure that may actually be available in your own backyard.

 

 

 

My 2016 Summer Bucketlist Plan

My 2016 Summer Bucketlist Plan

Camino De SantiagoI think I need to take a little walk!

Every year around mid January, I sit around and contemplate about what I want to accomplish in the coming year, especially with my Bucketlist project.  I compare what I have been wanting to do versus what is going on in my life.  Then I make out a very raw outline (as seen at My Hopes & Goals of 2016) and share it with everyone.  Personally, I love it when I finally “figure it out” cause it then allows me to start dreaming of the great adventures I am going to take on or the projects I want to accomplish.  Plus I am a list-maker by nature and this allows my scatter brained mind to maintain some sort of focus.

But with life, things are subject to change.  With me, things change can be for millions of reasons but usually its because my heart sees an opportunity and overtakes my brain.

Originally, my Summer 2016 plans were as follows:

June

  • #188) See the Synchronous Fireflies in Elkmont, Tennessee
  • #5) See my 6 Pack Abs

July

August

  • #54) Go to a Summer Olympics
  • #124) Travel to Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
  • #185) Visit and Stay with 3 Different Friends who live in Foreign Countries so that I can Reconnect with Old Friends & See that Country through Local Eyes (My Brazilian Friends I met in 2012)

Seemed like a great set of Summer Adventures, but I have decided after much contemplation that I don’t want my first trip to Brazil to be in the insanity of the Olympics and I am missing the fireflies as I type this post.

So what are my new plans???

Well Here goes:

June

  • On June 27th I will fly the red eye to Boston & then on to Philly where I will spend a 12 hour layover exploring Independence Hall hopefully
  • June 28th – June 29th: Fly from Philadelphia, PA to Lisbon, Portugal
  • June 29th – June 30th: ride the overnight train from Lisbon, Portugal to BIARRITZ, France and then onto ST JEAN PIED DE PORT, France.

Julycamino-de-santiago

  • July 1st – ????: #109) Walk the Camino de Santiago from France to Santiago, Espana (I will be walking the entire 490 miles of the  Camino Frances and then possibly the additional 50 miles to the coastal area of Finisterre, Espana)
  • July???: #185) Visit and Stay with 3 Different Friends who live in Foreign Countries so that I can Reconnect with Old Friends & See that Country through Local Eyes (My Family in Leon, Espana while I am Hiking the Camino)

August

  • August??: Figure out how to get from Finisterre, Spain and get to and explore Porto &/or Lisbon Portugal where I will complete – #153) Drink Port Wine in Portugal
  • August 10th: Fly from Lisbon Portugal back to Boston
  • August 11th: Go with my two Yankee loving cousins (I am a RED SOX FAN!!) &  complete – #55) Return to Fenway Baseball Park to See the Red Sox Play the Yankees

So these are my new updated plans.  Look for new blog articles before I go.  I will be discussing the Camino de Santiago, why I am doing this 490+ mile walk, and some other great insights before I go!

Have big summer plans this summer?  Please let me know in the comments below!  I love to hear about other adventures of all kinds!