Black Forest memories

One of my great friends lives in Stuttgart.  We met while going to school at Trinity College in Ireland in 1999.  I have had the pleasure of visiting her a few times and she has come here to California a number of times.  On one of our road trips in Germany she took me through the black forest.  She always thought the forest was boring as a child but had grown to appreciate its beauty since.  As a mountain lover myself I enjoyed every moment of it.  I found it beautiful and interesting and not touristy or heavily trafficy and therefore was an excellent place to visit.  (Not to mention Black Forest ham and cake hail from this region of the world so what’s not to like?)

This giant Coo Coo clock resides deep within the black forest.  It’s kitschy and random and I love it.  Did I bring a clock home?  Yes, of course I did as a gift for my mother and she loved it!  I didn’t have room in my luggage for anything this big however.

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Road Trip Music

Did you ever make mixed tapes in the past?  Did you ever try and seduce someone with your idea of the perfect set of love songs?  Did you ever create a mixed tape masterpiece for a family member to bring them back to a time to your past together?  Does a song every bring you back to a particular location while on vacation?

Well, a little while back I posted about Road Trip Food.   It got me thinking about Road Trip music.

I vividly remember driving my German friend through California and Arizona choosing appropriate “Road Trip Music” all along the way.  We listened to the Gypsy Kings as we drove through Central California.  We listened to the Beach Boys while traveling through LA.  We listened to U2’s Joshua Tree Album while traveling through Joshua Tree National park in Southern California near Palm Springs.  We listened to Elvis in Las Vegas.  We listened to American Indian mystical music in Sedona.

On subsequent trips to Europe with her we listened to country specific music when traveling through France and Italy.  We also paid special attention to whatever was popular in the country at the time.  I vividly remember a song called “The ketchup song” which to this day I still do not understand.  Europe had to have a flaw and that song was it.  We listened to the Proclaimers in Scotland and Ah-Ha in Germany.  (I was actually fortunate enough to see them in concert while there!)

Traveling through Ireland with my brother I brought Irish CDs with me only to find out the car we rented didn’t have a CD player.  Nonetheless we listened in hotels to Van Morrison, U2, Sinead O’Conner, Thin Lizzy, The Chieftains, Clannad, The Corrs, and Christy Moore.

I was introduced to Ronan Keating who sang, among other songs, “Nothing at all.”  I was familiar with the song from when Alison Krauss sang it and remembered Keith Whitley sang it first.  I pointed this out to a bartender who was singing along to it and he nearly threw me out of the bar for lying to him.  I never did convince him that someone else could have sang it first.

On a road trip with my husband to Utah we knew we would be stuck in the car for two full day’s worth of driving just to get to our main destination.  We ended up getting Farenheit 52 as a book on tape.  It was terrible!  Don’t hate me.  Everyone else in the world seems to love that book…  We had better luck listening to the Serial Podcast about a journalists journey to find the truth behind a murder!  That was an absolutely wonderful way to spend a road trip up and back to visit in-laws in Oregon!

Now-a-days we have Pandora and iTunes and a billion other music options.  It seems mixed tapes are no longer necessary making room for digital “playlists.”  I can tell you I will never bring a physical CD on a flight ever again!  But, I do miss the days where I put a lot of thought in to what music would be played to enhance my trip no matter whether I was driving or flying.

What kind of music do you listen to on the airplane when traveling?  Or what kind of music do you listen to in the car on a road trip?  What songs transport you back in time to a vacation moment you had long ago?

The ever changing Travel Journal

Everywhere you go now you see people typing on their laptops, tablets, or smartphones.  Visiting a coffee shop now, when you actually want a cup of coffee, is like finding a parking place among all those clicking away on their devices.  While I admire all of these folk’s work ethic it reminds me of my old hand written travel journals. ( It also reminded me of a post on my friend Indah’s gorgeous travel blog Indah’s Monochrome Travel Journal Post who was herself inspired by the following post from PhoTrablogger. )

When I first started traveling I kept hand written notes and used the journals as a place to store my paper memories like receipts, pamphlets, tickets, etc.  In fact, one amusing entry I read went like this…”Damn, I left my glue stick at home!”  That made me laugh.  I used these journals to remember what order I visited places, what the names of all the places were after I forgot them likely 24 hours later, it allowed me to write down what I was thinking, make notes on things to do when I returned, and mostly just to write or track anything I wanted.

Well, previously my journals were all hand written.  On my most recent big trip I used my iPhone instead.  While it was terribly convenient it wasn’t terribly inspired.  After reviewing entries in my old journals it made me realize I never want to use the phone or an app again.  It just isn’t the same as my silly rants, my terrible but amusing drawings, and my glue stick sorry excuse for a scrapbook.

I am now officially on the search for a new glue stick and my next interesting and blank travel journal.  How do you like to track your travels?  Do you still hand write your thoughts?  Do you use a laptop or tablet or even a voice recorder?  I always admire those that write and blog and post while on their vacation but prefer to ruminate over my travels after I return home.

An example of a few of my travel journals one from Costa Rica in 2006 and one from Scotland and Germany in 2000.

Apparently, I felt compelled to illustrate my journey towards Panama. (I missed my calling as a cartoonist.)  😉

I watched the great Leather back Turtles lay their eggs on a sandy beach in the middle of the night and must have been in the mood to draw another little cartoon.  Those little baby turtles are likely now nine years old!

I felt the need to document a tasty candy bar while in Scotland.  (Note: I wrote “Yummy” with an arrow if it wasn’t obvious enough.)  🙂

I always like to keep tickets from anywhere I go as a fun memento.

21st Century & functional yet uninspired travel journal.  ;(

  
What travel journals or method of tracking your journals do you use? What has worked or not worked? Anyone have a favorite type of journal?