Journal spackling

Obviously I’m home now. And obviously there were some, uh, gaps in the journal the past few weeks. That’s because once we left the Cinque Terre, my ability to find an Internet connection — and my ability to find time to do stuff with that connection — began to follow a decay curve that was only really arrested when I got to Dublin and discovered my hostel had free (free!) Internet access. Of course, I was only in Dublin for 35 hours, so..

Anyway, the upshot of this is that I’ll be posting some anecdotes about Provence, Paris, London, Wales and Dublin over the next couple of days. You might even get pictures, depending on how motivated I become!

Speaking of Dublin, I had a very weird experience about 15 minutes ago. While waiting for my soup to warm up I was watching the communal television here at Our Lady of Perpetual Profit, and I came across a Rick Steves episode on KCTS. I find the goober kind of irritating in the way I find earnest people typically irritating, but I stopped because the background looked familiar. Sure enough, there he was, wandering down O’Connell street, babbling about Kilmainham Gaol, and drinking Guinness in the Gravity Bar. And I thought to myself, “Man, this guy is still irritating.” Then I thought, “Hey, wait a minute. I’ve been there.

It’s a weird sensation. Flying home yesterday there was a moment when I looked at the moving map display (best. aviation. passenger. invention. ever.) and saw Rome, London, Madrid, Paris, and Algeris all identified. And suddenly these places aren’t just points on a map — they’re places I’ve known and, in some cases, loved quite dearly. It’s not a new sensation, because I get that feeling when I see stuff from places I’ve been in Japan — one of the backpackers magazines in Dublin had a guy posing in the gardens around the Imperial Palace in a spot that’s almost exactly identical to a picture I took two years ago — but it was much stronger, and I don’t know what to make of that.

Maybe it just means I need to travel more so the whole world can feel that way. It’s pretty cool.