Monday, January 19, 2015


So.... our adventure is over.  We went on the plane kicking and screaming, not really wanting to go home; Patrick actually cried when the plane took off.  But we have been home now for about 4 months and have finally, somewhat, gone back into a regular routine.  

One of my favorite travel bloggers, NomadicMatt, wrote an entire blog on what we call Post-Vacation Depression (  Check it out- this is something I have always thought about.

Soon after coming home, Rich's sister and brother in law came to Fresno to visit for a few days to buffer our landing; we had a wonderful Halloween with Cody; visited friends in Temecula; Rich went to Carson City to visit his mother; and I went to Minnesota to celebrate my aunts 94th birthday, and reconnect with about 10,000 cousins, and bond with 3 of my bro's, my sister, and nieces; to top it all off, we had great family and friend get-together's for the holidays.  Coming home in the fall was actually a good idea.

My brothers Dennis, Mike and Tom with our Aunt Helen, age 94!
My brothers Dennis and Tom, sister Sally, and two of her 3 daughters: Stacy and Kim
We are trying to figure out how to wrap up our trip in a blog entry.  Truthfully, it was the adventure of a life time!  We are so very blessed to have had the opportunity and the where-with-all to actually take this on!  During our trip, we constantly talked about our hope that people didn't think we were being uppity about sharing this trip, and we really didn't want to come across as having too much hubris.  We wanted to share the trip and our excitement and love for everyplace we went and every person we met.  Hopefully, no one thought of us a braggarts..... or worse.  As I said, we always felt blessed that we could actually do this.

The one thing we really loved and looked forward to, were comments- either on Facebook or e-mail- from everyone!  You all made us feel a part of life at home, even when we were away.  

We saw so many sights, city's, museums, country's, castles and palaces; ate in so many restaurants and tried so many different foods (but nothing weird, we are not that adventurous); drank so many different types of coffee, beer, and wine; slept is such a variety of hotels, from very basic to very nice, to the dump in Paris- all at budget pricing.  But even with almost 7 months, there was never enough time to do everything we wanted to do or see.  Perhaps that is what life is about- never experiencing it all so that the door to returning is always open. 

It was not the sights, the art, or the food that made our trip; it was the people we met along the way.  When we think of the cruise over to Europe, we think of the entire group of people we met; when we think of Seville, we will always think of staying at Sofia and Alex's apartment; or meeting Margherita in Rome; Antonella and Umberto made us feel so welcome in Florence, all the wonderful people in Montenegro and Belgrade, and of course little Emma in Berlin!  The list of people we met- from the cruise to each of the cities, was astounding!   And I was doubly blessed to meet up with so many awesome people I met on the Camino de Santiago, and had the chance to spend time with them and introduce them to Rich.  What was really unexpected is that everyone of them took so much time to show us their homes!  The days in Dobeln, Germany and Eindhoven, Netherlands were incredible!  Again, proof that the Camino de Santiago is a life-changing adventure and I was blessed to be a part of it. We were truly blessed to meet up with everyone.  Each person represented their country, and the human race, with such grace and humanity, and the fun we had with everyone is nothing short of astounding! There was only one disappointment for me- I did not get to meet up with Ivan- next time Ivan!  

Future travels will, of course, be part of our lives.  We do not think we will ever travel for an extended period again, but 6 weeks is not out of the question:-). Right now, we have no specific plans, but 2015 will be the start of putting together new adventures:-).

This blog took on a life of its own during this trip!  But what to do with it in the future is something we have been talking about.  Our lives are too boring to have regular entries, so we decided that when we do travel, we will make entries......  The entries will not be regular, and right now we have no idea of where we will specifically be going, so we will just have to wait and see:-).  We hope everyone will share with us.

To close, we want to thank everyone for caring enough to follow our travels. We hope we gave you both excitement for travel and a glimpse into the world.  As we always say, the world is a wonderful place!  It is just begging to be explored and experienced, and all the people are open and are ready to be met and become friends!  People really are amazing, and we all do amazing things- let's share it!

Happy Travels to everyone!

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