Travel Trip Notes

santaynezvineyards

Traditionally Mr. Black and I have had the good fortune of traveling somewhere to celebrate our annual Birthdays. I suppose we like to wake up somewhere new, to help ring in the spirit of adventure each year. My Birthday month is November; his in February. Later this week to celebrate the day of my birth, we’re making the Sideways journey through the Santa Ynez Valley just north of Los Angeles.

road-trip-sideways

 

We’re renting a car, not sure if it’s a Saab, like the one Miles drove – and I hoping we both come back unscathed from our trip, unlike Jack did upon his return from vino country.

 

Sideways to adventure into another year ~
Neve Black

~~~~~~

 

Slowly, but steadily, my Western world begins to eclipse my previous, Midwestern one. There are many advantageous to this new world – I’m always minutes away from the majestic ocean, with its crystal, white sandy beaches, healing waves, and the salty fresh air, which are all priceless jewels. But, even with the entire Pacific’s grandiose splendor, I sometimes find myself missing some of those gems my previous world offered me too, and in my melancholy mood, I search for their replacements while living here.

One of the biggest challenges that I’ve had to grapple with is travel. The first and obvious difference for me is how quick it was to get from Ohio to Europe, when I was so inclined. Back in the day when Continental Airlines ruled the skies for air travel, some of us lucky ones traveled from Cleveland to London, non-stop. That flight took about seven hours, and was a do-able long weekend trip. If you had the good fortune of more time to explore other cities, you could easily choose one of the many European airlines, and be somewhere else, like Italy, faster than you could say, Limóncello.

Those were the good old days.

If you were feeling a bit less ambitious, you could skip going over the pond, and be in the United Sates’ version of Europe, New York City by taking a 1.5 hour puddle jump ride. Out here in the good old, Wild West, it takes about 5-6 hours via plane to get from here to The City That Never Sleeps, and another 6-7 hours to get over the pond. And instead of knowing some of my favorite European destinations are just six, short hours ahead of me, they are now clocking in at about nine hours, which is practically an entire day.

Le grumble.

Fortunately, I am a positive person, and there are two signs to every coin: living here, I’m traveling distance via automobile, train or plane to some of the most wonderful places on earth, like Los Angeles, Palm Springs, Mammoth Mountain/Yosemite, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Carmel, San Francisco, California’s wine country and Viva Las Vegas, baby.

It almost makes up for the longer time travel trip to Europe.

Almost.

So I ask you dear reader, what’s a girl to do that lives out west that possesses a European craving so fierce, even Sees’ dark chocolate isn’t satiating her craving? Does she splurge and buy a round trip ticket to some fascinating place in Europe, along with a 30-day Metro pass, so she can be sure and work-out her European fixation? Well, yes of course she does!

That is if she doesn’t have responsibilities that keep her tied to the California shore.

So, what’s the second best thing a girl can do to quench her European thirst? I’m going to tell you! She discovers slices of Europe right here in her own back yard.

And that’s what I did. I’ve started to discover, or re-discover chunks of Europe right here in the Golden State. Here are just a few examples of places I’ve found, thus far located here in California to help whet a fellow traveler’s European appetite:

Bon Appétit!

Oceanside, California – Mission San Luis Rey de Francia has Mosque-influenced architecture:

Old Mission San Luis Rey

You don’t think the Moors would have ever reached California, especially after the  Reconquista of Spain in 1492, when the Islamic Kingdom of Granada fell to the forces of  Christianity, but the architecture found in this mission say’s they did. Founded in 1798 by  Padre Fermin Francisco de Lasuen, successor to Padre Junipero Serra, the Mission was named  after St. Louis IX, King of France, who lived during the 13th century. The church is recognized  as the most unique and one of the most beautiful in the mission chain. It is the largest of the 21  California missions and the only one adorned with a wooden dome and cupola. Unique also to  San Luis Rey are the side altars and the Madonna Chapel which originally served as a  mortuary chapel. This mission was built in the San Luis Rey (Spanish), or Saint Louis the King, was taught by the early Franciscans and is the patron of their 3rd order. He also was of Spanish blood on his mother’s side and died fighting in the Crusades. He was canonized in 1297.  4050 Mission Ave, Oceanside, CA  92057 (760) 757-3651

A French Barn resides in Glendale, California:

French Connection

According to an article I read in an on-line Magazine called, Westways,  in 1827, a man named Bauchet, who was a former officer of Napoleon  Bonaparte’s Old Guard, moved to Los Angeles, where he bought a  vineyard along present-day Bauchet Street. Later, a man named,  Vignes followed in 1831; he planted 104 acres of Bordeaux grapevines  on the current Union Station site, becoming one of California’s first  commercial winemakers. Vignes ushered in the first wave of French  immigrants, who were lured by California’s Mediterranean climate and  the promise of cheap land.

Note: so much has changed regarding those last two words around these parts.

Le Mesnager Barn offers visitors the closest thing in Southern California to an authentic French farmhouse. Using local river rock, the French Le Mesnager family built the barn in 1914 and used it to store grapes for their downtown Los Angeles winery. Today, the City of Glendale has restored the barn as part of Deukmejian Wilderness Park. Visitors can enjoy a short loop trail, picnic area, and spectacular views of the Crescenta Valley and Verdugo Mountains. A modest vineyard tended by the Stonebarn Vineyard Conservancy still produces a small amount of wine yearly.  3429 Markridge Road,  La Crescenta, CA.  1-818-548-3795

 Denmark has been relocated to Santa Barbara, California:

Solvang

Solvang (Danish for ‘sunny field’) is a beautiful little city nestled in the Santa Ynez Valley of California. Founded in 1911 by a small group of Danish teachers, Solvang now is a diverse, modern city, with fine restaurants, lovely shops and outstanding activities to enchant young and old alike. There are Danish festivals, quiet tree lined streets, horse drawn wagons, Hans Christian Andersen Park, windmills, Danish pastries and dozens of quaint shops to explore. Solvang was incorporated as a city on May 1, 1985 and now has a population of approximately 5,283. Solvang Chamber of Commerce | 805-688-0701 | P.O. Box 465, Solvang, CA 93464.

 

Europe (via California) Here I Come!
Neve Black

 

~~~~~

 

I was moving across the country, and after much deliberation, sleepless nights, and more than one failed attempt at finding a home for one of my precious five mew-meows – specifically the rambunctious and orange, trouble-maker, Tilde, the decision was made – The Fabulous Five felines were all moving with me. After accepting the reality of this decision, regardless of how preposterous it might have seemed to some people, the next profound dilemma came screeching at me ferociously — how the hell was I going to move five cats across the country?

A genius idea was born

After giving this task considerable contemplation, and scouring the internet for ideas, I considered myself a damn genius with my first plan: rent a motor home. I thought I’d had the whole thing figured out too. I was going to enlist a couple able bodies, one of them being my boyfriend, who by the way is quite allergic to felines, pack-up our suitcases and hit the road for four blissful nights, and five nothinglessthananadventure days on the road, while making our way out west. Can you hear the theme song to Rawhide playing in your head right now? We’d save money on lodging because we could sleep in our moving pussy mobile. Doesn’t that sound fun? Who wouldn’t want to sign-up for that type of adventure? So I sold the pussy mobile novelty when tossing out my proposal, and before too long, both my boyfriend and another great friend of mine were jumping onto the pussy mobile-band wagon faster than Sylvester could take a swipe of Tweedy Bird. In my mind, this would give my felines free-range of the moving motel as we trekked through river valleys, chugged up mountain peaks until finally reaching the glorious Pacific Ocean.

Okay, so maybe the term, genius was a bit too boastful?

I quickly had to scratch my genius plan after realizing how much the pussy mobile adventure would end up costing me in rental fees, gasoline, restaurants and cat food – not to mention the time it would take, which would cause undue stress and fatigue on The Fabulous Five and their faithful travel companions. Those four nights on the road started to seem more dismal than blissful.

I was on a budget

I thought about packing them all up into their special, soft carrying cases and loading them into my somewhat unreliable 1999, red Jeep Cherokee, and travel across the country that way – it would be the least expensive option too. The unreliability piece of transporting two adults and five mew-meows 2500 miles gnawed at me so badly, it kept me up at night. I decided to sell my Jeep. It was staying in Cleveland without me.

A slice of logic, please

Running into moving option road blocks was making me cranky, so thankfully my number-crunching boyfriend had me revisit the idea of flying. I had initially thought this approach was going to be the most costly way to travel, but after adding the numbers up, and comparing all the costs, plus adding in the benefit of having the entire move done in less than one day was huge for me. I was soon organizing four travelers to each take a pussy on a flight as a carry-on – the type of carry-on that fits below the seat in front of you, but makes small sounds and might feel a bit overwhelmed and scared.

Four victims are found in and around Cleveland

I think I’ve missed my calling as a marketing/sales guru, because I was able to convince my boyfriend, my mom, both who flew to Cleveland from San Diego, and two of my girlfriends that live in Cleveland to help me escort The Fabulous Five across the USofA.

Flights are booked; we are headed west!

Que the Rawhide music again, please. The comedy that ensued from this adventure will live with me forever. When I look back at that day, I can now laugh and I know in my heart I made the right choice. Albeit, I was stressed-out about the move, but the stress has since diluted, and I’m left with both fondness and affection from the experience. I like to think that strangers that didn’t know our story and saw us all walking briskly through the airport would remember the scene in Tarrantino’s Reservoir Dogs, when six criminals are all walking down the street together, wearing black suits, white shirts and skinny ties. As the five of us all walked through the airport together, we each walked with conviction and courage; we were on a mission as we each carried our small, black satchels – because inside each satchel held one of The Fabulous Five.

Are we there yet?

With the exception of one pre-boarding up-chuck, a peeing accident, and a bachelor party that had gone haywire, The Fabulous Five, their five travel companions and the balance of passengers, and crew aboard flight 866 all landed successfully and thank goodness safely in San Diego.

Note: there was a short stop in Las Vegas to change planes and one unknowing passenger’s meet and greet with three Federal Marshalls once we landed. It appears the bachelor party that had gone awry was running neck and neck with the five pussies on a plane story. In my opinion, the bachelor party attendee arrest pushed the story competition over the finish line though. The bachelor party story will have to be saved for another time though.

Fabulous Five To Date

I’m happy to report Fabulous Five are all doing very well. They’ve adapted to their new surroundings beautifully. They have full access to frolicking outside in the green, grass, vegetable gardens and fruit trees, while the palm trees sway gently with the cool ocean breeze. Well, four out of five have those outdoor privileges. There’s always an exception. We have one rule breaker in the group. He is an orange-furry, fence-jumper who will go unnamed. They all seem endlessly thrilled to be living in paradise with me, and thank me each day for not leaving them behind, or for staying in Las Vegas.

 

Neve Black
Rawhide!

~~~~~

 

CLE-BWI-CLE
I know. I know. It’s best in the west, but on this trip I’m headed to Maryland for the weekend to Meet The Parents. I’m actually looking forward to this visit, even though we eclipsed Winter and have officially sprung into Spring, the weather will most likely not be sunny-warm in Baltimore. I say this only because from where I’m sitting now the curtains in the window are only partially drawn shut, but I can see the snow flying out past the eaves of my house, as the golden light from the street lamp shines dimly upon the white sky. It makes my heart ache for longer, warmer days - filled with sunshine, pretty flowers, bike rides to the market and dresses that no longer need leggings. Yes, cheers for warmer days so my popsicle-painted toes can wink and flirt in a pair of exposing flip-flops.
So, for those of us that live very far north of everything and often think we might as well be living in Canada, we wait a little longer than some for the signs of Spring to come: we wait for the daffodils to stretch and yawn; pushing back the cold soil to expose their pretty heads – and we hope and we pray they don’t get pummeled by a freakish, late Spring snow storm. We wait until May, just to be safe, before we start tackling yard work, because we’re fearful of exposing plants and shrubs from the fallen leaves and other debris that’s protected their skin all winter long. We wait until the sun is out for at least two, full days before we fill our sunken bike tires full of air. We wait until we no longer have to wear long-sleeved shirts and can finally graduate to short-sleeves, before we pack-up our winter clothes and store them in the basement. We wait. Some of us wait more patiently than others, but we all wait together for winter to finally, dear gods…end.

 

Hoping we don’t All have to wait to long this year ~
Neve Black

 

~~~~~

CLE-LAX-CLD-PSP-ORD-CLE

Traveled to San Diego again this time to get out of the harsh, cold and enjoy the warm and lovely. My boyfriend plays quite a lot of tennis and like last year at this time, we planned a trip to Palm Springs to watch the BNP Paribas Tennis Tournament, enjoy the company of good friends, eat, drink; be merry, while basking in the desert sunshine, which is unquestionably an outstanding place to be come early March: not too hot, not too cold – it’s a Three Bear’s kind of experience, it’s just right – perfecto.

That is of course if the apocalypse of bad weather doesn’t decide to rear its ugly head. Much to my disappointment, we came face-to-face with rainy-sloggy in San Diego, so we high-tailed it out of that nonsense, only to meet more unexpected and worse conditions: a wintry-mix of rain, ice and snow while driving over the mountains located east of coastal SoCal and into paradise, Palm Springs. For those that aren’t really familiar with this part of the world, I texted my Catholic mother to say, “I thought you might want to know, hell has officially frozen over…it’s actually SNOWING in San Diego. Better message the Pope for help!” The returned volley was simple, but assuredly expected, “You’re kidding…?” Which was followed up with a second text that read, “And no smoke until next week!”

Fortunately for us, the sun won the battle with the wet-wintry, or perhaps my mother skipped over the Pope situation entirely and went straight to the top; having a word with God directly, because in no time at all the storm clouds parted to clear, blue skies. I thanked all the Gods involved too. Once the windshield wipers pushed away the remaining snow from our view, much like a diligent host that uses a crumber after a fancy meal to remove the debris from a table, we felt compelled to roll down the car’s windows, turn up the radio and take in the local flavors the high-desert offers. It’s so beautiful this time of year in the California desert. The air is fresh, clean and glistens with warmth, with an ever-so-slightly cool breeze that whispers from the snow-topped mountains above, “We’re here isolating and protecting you from the harshness found on the other side.”

Lavish Palm Springs has a way of teasing my frugal side mercifully so. Frugal me generally adapts well to the bare essentials, like a computer to write my thoughts, a large bottle of water to quench my well-traveled thirst and appropriate clothes for the weather is all I need…usually. But we’re talking lavish Palm Springs that begs for more, more, more…and gets what she wants: fancy tennis gardens, fast, expensive sports cars, wide, flat and forever winding running trails, fun-trendy restaurants, wine bars, art galleries, outdoor hot showers , hammocks strategically placed under fragrant orange trees; just outside your bedroom suite, zestful flowers, Roadrunners that really do seem to say, “beep-beep”, the coo of Morning Doves that greet you each morning, like a trusty alarm clock and street-lined palm trees that go for miles and miles.

There’s a reason this city’s tag line is: P.S. I love you. Oh and I do love you P.S., I really, really do. I fell in love with all your lavish a long time ago. And lavish isn’t just my own interpretation of this desert beauty either. Keep in mind this was as it still is the home to many celebrities, like Bob Hope, Sonny Bono, golf pro, Freddie Couples and C&W singer, Shelby Lynne to name a few. And because the location is just a couple hours east of Los Angeles, many celebrities make the trek over the mountains to bath in the lavish on a regular basis. My niece and her husband were in nearby La Quinta for the weekend and we tried to connect, so my text to her read, “Greetings from Desert Paradise. How’s your weekend?” Her text response, “Hi there! Weekend is great – we just stood next to Gavin Rossdale while watching tennis!” In which I replied, “Oooh, where’s Gwen?” Seconds ticked by before she responded, “Oh, just saw Gwen with the kids by the pool.” Suffice it to say, none of my family members are on a first name basis with these celebrities, but when you’re lavishing in Palm Springs with everyone else, you suddenly feel as if you are.

The weekend came to an end far too quickly and I had to kiss both my boyfriend and Palm Springs goodbye, but I’ll be back again, you lavish, desert hideaway, you.

Oh and P.S. I love you

Neve Black

 

~~~~~

Trip dates: 1/30/2013 – 2/05/2013
CLE – DEN – SEA – SAN - ORD – CLE

stone-world-brewery-lg

Let’s be honest, there’s little to love about flight travel in the dead of winter, unless you’re headed somewhere really warm and plan to rest there until all the bears come out from hibernation. Traveling across the US of A from just about anywhere in the country can be disastrous. I tend to go east to west a lot. The east coast is surging with snow storms, while the west is socked-in with fog. Either location wreaks havoc on flights. It took me 18 hours to get from San Diego to Cleveland, which was quite different from the original six hour itinerary I was counting on. My flight was delayed on the west, which caused me to miss my connector, so I had to fly through the abominable, Bermuda Triangle of airports, Chicago. I don’t know why my worst flight stories all have the airport code ORD linked to them, but they do. I’ve been stuck at this airport in the dead of winter, which is understandable, really, but I’ve also been stuck there in the summer months too.

This post isn’t to ramble on about the perils of my flight delays, but I mention it because it’s relative to the body of these trip notes.

My trip this time was for both business and pleasure – a quick trip to Seattle for a client visit and then I headed south to sunny, San Diego to spend the weekend with the incredible man in life. Overall, it was a good trip on all fronts. And its taken me the entire week to ponder and reflect upon all the interesting conversations and observations I experienced during this trip. I suppose I’ve been marinating in some personal news I learned about someone I work with, which surprisingly shook me up a bit. And I think that shaken feeling has to do with the fact that I went from work mode right into fun-weekend-mode and didn’t have time to process. I tend to compartmentalize my work life from my personal life, so when the two unexpectedly collide, sometimes, I feel tongue-tied and confused on how I should react. It’s kind of like having a flight itinerary changed and not getting home for 18 hours when you’re expecting to arrive in six.

With all this kind of negative energy I’ve spewed here, thus far, I think  this might be a good time to mention there was a lot of positive experiences on this trip too: birthday celebrations, a hug, a smile; catching up with people I haven’t seen for a bit and heart-felt conversations. In my negative spewing defense, during the winter months, I’m really trying to make more of an effort to remain more positive about what life throws at me, offers me. And yes, I’m already a relatively positive person. I don’t suffer from long, winding roads of depression. I really do feel that my life is pretty damn good. I do however get the blues when the sky is perpetually gray and the temperatures are damn cold outside for extended periods of time. And I’ve noticed that as I get older, I’m much more affected by the cold weather than I was when I was younger. This might have to do with the fact that lived two hours to the closest ski mountain and the snow never grazed my doorstep, like it does now. When it’s snowing and miserable outside, I long for sparkly-white, hot sand I can wriggle my toes into and large rocks I can stretch out on, so I can heat up my sun-starved, lizard-like body. I suppose during the winter months, I often feel stymied by the weather, because it prohibits me from getting outside to get my exercise on. This simple need of to be outside in the fresh air is so important for my mental health and well-being, that when I don’t get to experience it, I get really prickly and irritable and cranky and mean. Boo. Hiss.

*…somewhere I’m being pulled off the stage with a large cane, because I’m being too negative again with this post…*

So…

A much needed walk along the Pacific Coast shoreline, quality time spent with people I love and care about and delicious sex are just a few of the high-points of the pleasure side of this trip. Plus we went to Stone Brewery in Escondildo for my honey’s bday dinner and the place was fabulously huge, with great food, wonderful company and of course, mmmmm…beer.


Bring on the heat, please ~
Neve Black

  ~ ~ ~~~


Trip dates: 12/21/2012 – 12/27/2012

CLE-SAN
Hollydaze generally equates to me going on a trip somewhere. And the winter months of November and December are seasonally loaded with festive celebratory reasons to do just that. Lately that travel destination has been to Sun Dog. Family, good ol’ friends and a sexy man await me there, which is enough to warm a girl living in the mid-west’s cold winter bones, much like sitting next to a roaring fire while the snow falls quietly outside.

Interestingly, I’ve found that I feel like I’m torn between two lovers or cities really. When I leave my house, friends, five fur-balls and the roots I’ve established here in Cleveland to go to what always feels like home to me, it makes me feel a little sad. I suppose I feel like I’m cheating on Cleveland with Sun Dog. And we all know what happens when we don’t pick one lover, but instead try and play the two for as long as possible? We usually end up losing both.

Heavy sigh.

For some of you that know me well, know that my heart and soul are both in the west; have always been in the west. I suppose I’ve already chosen a lover, a city…but still my heart aches for the culture, the good and the bad, but mostly good people I’ve met in Cleveland. I’ve also established a part of myself while living here that’s stronger, smarter and wiser, which is part of the reason behind my heavy heart. And of course a big part of that self is now a dimension of my writing voice.

I suppose what I want to say here is this: I love you Cleveland. And I am forever grateful for all the richness you’ve given me. I hope you know I will never, ever forget you. I hope you understand this girl needs to fly south soon and in the very, near future, maybe much longer than just a visit.


Happy Hollydaze to both of my lovers
Neve Black

 ~ ~ ~~~


Update to trip dates: 11/04 – 11/12/2012

The delicate red and pink cabbage roses dance along the outside edge of the good China plates and bowls that sit patiently inside my mother’s cupboard. That rose pattern used to sit patiently inside the cupboard of her mother’s kitchen, my grandmother. After my grandmother died some 10 years’ ago, the rose patterned China was inherited by her only daughter, my mom.

When I visit my mom from out of town and I stand in her kitchen and reach for a cereal bowl, or a plate; it takes me back to when I used to stand in the kitchen of my grandmother’s kitchen. And like my mom’s kitchen and even my own kitchen, my grandmother’s kitchen was always, pass-the-white-glove-test spotless clean – I remember the faint smell of bleach and fresh coffee percolating inside a large metal coffee pot that sat next to the farm sink. I remember what a special treat it was when my grandmother would pour a Coca Cola for me: the effervescent, caramel goodness tickled the inside of my nose as it snapped at the ice cubes inside the glass. There was always a feast of food prepared when we’d visit too: steaming bowls filled with baby peas and white onions would lie on the dinner table, awaiting our hungry mouths, along with their hearty companions, like chicken pot pie, ham and cheese quiche, or some cooked to perfection meat dish.

After my grandmother’s daily morning round of golf, which she played with my grandfather, my grandmother’s wavy and naturally platinum colored hair would bop about, as she hummed to the music on the radio, while she cooked and cleaned. She’d wear a sleeveless, cotton house-dress; the washed-out color, bleached to oblivion would move freely against my grandmother’s deep, brown suntanned skin. I would sit in the kitchen or at the dining table and watch her; mesmerized by her stealth-like ability towards multi-tasking. She’d stop and ask me a question about one thing or another and then smile and laugh at my answers before moving back to all her tasks at hand. I loved my grandmother.

Minutes before expected company would arrive, which was usually my uncle, his wife, and my grandmother’s two sisters and their husbands, my grandmother would disappear into she and my grandfather’s bedroom; quietly shut the door and then emerge 10 minutes’ later, dressed in crisp and freshly creased, brightly-colored pants and a matching top. Not a single hair on her head would be out of place and she’d applied deep, red lipstick, which I knew came from a golden-colored case. She radiated elegance. She was perfect. I used to think my grandmother was a movie star, or at least a super hero – she had an award winning golf swing, she was a remarkable cook and baker, kept an impeccably clean house and loved her family more than life itself.

The sound of the toaster’s pop, shakes me back to my mom’s spotless, white kitchen again. I open a drawer and reach for a knife to butter my bagel with – the silver metal gleams in the SoCal sunlight after years of being polished from both my grandmother’s and my mother’s worn hands. The utensil feels heavy in my fingers, laden with history of our family’s meals, conversations and quarrels. I wonder if the rose plates and sterling silver utensils will live with me after my mom passes on – I take a bite of my cheese and jalapeno bagel and look out onto the backyard where my mom moves about in her garden. My mother wears a sleeveless and faded house-dress and over the years, I’ve watched as her hair turned from brown to gray; to nearly all platinum white and I wonder if she watched her mother’s hair turn as well. Finally my mother turns and smiles at me through the glass patio doors,as she pushes the spade of the shovel into the hardened ground; loosening the roots a bit – and at that moment my heart warms knowing the pink and red cabbage rose plates will continue to dance inside the cupboards of my mom’s house for what appears to be several more years to come.


Going Home
Neve Black

~ ~ ~~~

 

Trip dates: 11/04 – 11/12/2012
CLE – LAX- SAN

I’m headed home next weekend for a week to spend time with my boyfriend, my family and friends. My birthday falls somewhere in these travels dates and I’m looking forward to spending time in warm, sunny place this birthday go ’round. I’m typing this message and listening as Hurricane Sandy’s rain, cold and wind make its way through NEO, which makes me want to pack-up my car and head west tonight. That’s not going to happen. Mostly because I’m simply not that motivated. I’m quite comfortable in my well-lite, heated abode. They’re plenty of kitties around me. There’s a pantry full of pasta and trick-or-treat candy too. And I know hot teas and cold pumpkin ales are only a few padded steps downstairs -  comfortable and well prepared for you, Sandy, baby.

Still, there’s something about packing-up and hitting the highway that teases my gypsy spirit. Unfortunately, my Jeep wouldn’t make the cross country adventure unscathed. I feel a bit like a renegade thinking about road tripping out west though, especially when there’s a storm chasing after me.

Need to borrow your Porsche, Hank Moody
Neve Black

~ ~ ~~~

 

Trip dates: 10/13/2012 – 10/15/2012:
CLE-EWR-NYC-EWR

It was one of those last minute trips that can’t really be planned. The kind of trip a person takes when a good friend needs your help. The kind of trip that leaves you shoving clothes into a bag at the last minute. The kind of trip where you actually ponder while sitting at the gate if you remembered to pack your underwear.

The trip started out like this: I was going. I wasn’t going. I was going. I wasn’t going. And then I was in a holding pattern – holding, holding…then I was going. I quickly zipped up my black, leather boots, shoved jeans, sweaters and other warm-type of clothes into my suitcase before grabbing the cheetah-print coat – we were headed to NYC -  style had to be considered.

Once I arrived, the reason we were there ended up being much like the trip preamble: it was going. It wasn’t going. It was going. It wasn’t going. We were once again in a holding pattern, and in the end, it cancelled and we came home at least a day earlier than expected.

It’s the between that mattered though – the conversations, the waiting for that phone call, while watching Shawshank Redemption together on an un-made sofa bed, in a hotel room somewhere in the New Jersey suburbs. The laughter, the tears, the taste of a tangy, green apple while sitting on a train; headed into the city – thinking about acronyms like, CCS and SET and how those words rest heavily on my friend’s heart.

Neve Black

~ ~ ~~~

2 thoughts on “Travel Trip Notes

  1. Wow, KH, amazing. I love the way you write and miss you much. :) You were always my best of friends. Thank you for sharing these incredibly warm and romantic stories of places you are …

  2. Thank you, Miss Jolie. We will get together and catch-up one day soon, my dear. And thank you for the nice thoughts. Much appreciated. Keep on being Socially Smashing, as only you and you could be. ;)

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