Finally covid restrictions have eased. I'm taking six weeks to bop around Europe in May and June 2022.

Past -I have a year to travel starting this summer of 2008. I will start in the United Kingdom, then cross to Ireland. Then I plan to go to Poland and Ukraine. Depending upon the political climate, I may venture into Turkey. In preparation, I have spent many hours reading other peoples' blogs. I wonder how my adventure will unfold?


Europe » United Kingdom » England » East Sussex » Brighton June 24th 2022

Well, I hope it is the last train I took on this journey. Currently I am in hotel at the airport and I just got email that my flight is canceled tomorrow morning. Cross your fingers for me that I get a later flight. The rail strike is tomorrow so I cannot leave. I came to the hotel early and dropped my luggage off, then took the train to Brighten for the afternoon. I used to live there starting with a fellowship at the university of Sussex, and then later in following years. It was nice to go back and find my way around with ease. Not much has changed. I strolled down from the train station and then along the high street. I had to walk through some of the Lanes. They did seem to ... read more
The Pavilion
The Lanes

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Dorset » Christchurch June 23rd 2022

Christchurch was a lovely surprise today. Several people had recommended going there, but I wish they were more adamant about how much history and British charm there is at the site. Once you walk past the regular high street, you enter the church and quay historic section…all very lovely. The large church was one of the nicest I have visited. The volunteer told me the reason why English churches are so plain. King Henry dismantled monasteries, and then Oliver Cromwell ordered every church wall to be white washed and all the excessive statues to be removed. He even used this church as a horse stable! Now it is an active church all year long. This explains why Canterbury cathedral is with out colours. After the church, I walked through the gardens to the quay and had ... read more
English lavender garden
Impressive grounds

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Kent » Canterbury June 22nd 2022

I gambled that the rail strIke would have enough trains running so that I could get to London and then on to Canterbury. The underground in London was the biggest challenge with closed or severely delayed trains. There is a high speed train from St Pancras that gets you to Canterbury in an hour but you do not see much charming landscape. I guess it’s a good thing for a day trip like today. There were less crowds on Canterbury’s high street, at least until three when school children were released from school. There were a lot less groups of international students than the last time I was here. I went to the historic restaurant on the river, my usual place for lunch. The building is so old that I have to duck under the dark ... read more
Canterbury Cathedral
The West Gate
I think this is the river Stour

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Dorset » Poole June 21st 2022

Today I ventured to Poole but not before I ran some errands in Winton and Westborne, which are suburb/surrounding villages of Bournemouth. I bought an all day bus ticket and jumped on buses to and from Bournemouth town centre, the hub for all directions. The morning began with a proper fry up, a traditional British breakfast in a local pub In Winton. All that was missing was tomatoes. Then I took a bus to Westborne to pick up a book I ordered from a traditional book store. It hadn’t arrived, so I got on a bus to Bournemouth and then on to Poole. A strange place, the Poole bus station. There is a street map but it makes no sense for a tourist. Someone had advised me to walk through the shopping mall and on to ... read more
Today was a bus day
Traditional houses in Westborne
Arcade with lovely shops.in Westborne

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Dorset » Bournemouth June 20th 2022

Today was a day at the beach, enjoying all things British. Bournemouthe is a beach resort town, and has been for many decades. Some parts of the town are showing their age; shop are closing because of online shopping. But there are still classic shops like candy stores, Cornish pasties, fish & chips, etc. There’s nice gardens and an active beach and pier with round observation wheel. The beach has lovely sand, as opposed to the regular pebbles on other English beaches. I was surprised that there were so many people in Bournemouth town, for a Monday. When I bought a ticket for the observation wheel (8 pounds) I noted how many people were around. This in nothing, I was told. The place is overflowing in summer because this is the best beach. Guess I am ... read more
The wheel
View from on high
In cable car

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London June 19th 2022

Woke up early and went to Piccadilly square which really is the Eros statue. Very few people there, lots of street cleaning machines getting city ready for another busy day. A short walk to Trafalgar Square; I really do love this city. Went to British museum. Love that place.... read more
Iconic place
Decorations for Queen’s Jubilee still up

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London » London City June 18th 2022

I am finally free of the oppressive heat! What a good feeling getting off the train and watching people put on a sweater. Someone at the Paris train station said it was over forty degrees there because the glass ceiling acts like a greenhouse. That heat, plus the stress of missing the train to England because the first French train was more forty than minutes late for no apparent reason I could see except that it sat on the tracks too long, nearly did me in. This must happen a lot because the office gave me a ticket for the next train out without asking questions. I would have loved to bend their ears but there was no time. It took thirty minutes to get through two customs checks plus the luggage X-ray security. Finally I ... read more
Beautiful train station
Selfie with a few bug bites remaining
Double decker

Europe » Switzerland » South-West » Geneva June 17th 2022

Here Friday in Switzerland and the city is having a food festival, with tons of people on the lake beach because it is so hot here. Dang! My plan to escape the relentless sun has been foiled! Maybe I need to go up a mountain? I am suffering from mosquito bites too. I went to a pharmacy here in Geneva and was given ointment but it is not as effective as Witch Hazel. I am hoping the itching will cease soon. Geneva has the best dressed people, even breezy summer clothes are cut well. You can easily walk to places, but the water taxis make it more fun. Finding the street food festival was a bonus. They had really good music playing, too. There’s a definite summer vibe here today and many families and friends are ... read more
I remember the swans on the lake when I was here decades ago
In the old city of Geneva
Central Park

Europe » France » Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur » Toulon June 16th 2022

I was tired when I arrived yesterday and I could not find the shop to store my suitcase. Travel tip: do not use website Nannybag because you have to pay for the days ahead of time, and in this case in Toulon, the shop was several streets away from the train station where apparently no one knew the street or shop. There is a heat wave in France and that’s the wrong time to be searching the streets of Toulon for an obscure site. There is a sign in front of the station pointing to a tourist office, but I never found it, even today when I had more time and less stress. Yesterday I gave up and took a taxi to my destination. Travel tip: if the train station is too small to have its ... read more
Best streets head to the beach
I swam here this afternoon
View from my hotel window.

Europe » France » Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur » Nice June 14th 2022

I had to take the train back to Milan’s central train station to pick up my luggage. I thought I was heading into a new direction towards France but my train went through Pavia, where I started the morning. Milan’s central train station is a beast when you hit it the first time when you are uncertain of where to go. Few staff are helpful. Travel tips: the left luggage office is TWO levels below the train platforms, and it is expensive, nearly 30 Euros for two days for a medium size bag. Don’t ask older police for directions, wait for the younger ones who come to spot check your passport, they speak better English. Platforms are listed late so don’t hang under the departure signs any more than 15 minutes before train is scheduled to ... read more
Feels like a holiday
The beach
Nice fountain where buddy is frolicking with animals

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