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Get back Jojo, go home.

After 253 days, I returned. I’ve seen much I always longed too, I’ve seen much I never knew existed, and I’ve learnt a vast amount on diverse topics. I’ve learnt things that opened my mind, challenged preconceptions and taught tolerance, and conversely I’ve learnt of things I cannot tolerate. I’ve seen C-beams glitter in the dark at… wait, that ehn’t right. Most of all, I’ve gathered fodder for a wealth of tales that lend themselves to epic telling. Prepare thyself.

To tell the third kind of lie, I provide for your perusal some hard, bankable statistics. My trip encompassed the following:

* 13 counties: USA, Canada, UK, Italia, Austria, Slovenia, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Switzerland, Germany, France & South Africa (including all those I entered the immigration zone of, if only for a short while).

* 20 flights: Tullamarine to Auckland, Auckland to LAX, LAX to Calgary, Calgary to Winnipeg, Winterpeg to Calgary, Calgary to Winnipeg again, Winnipeg to Toronto, Toronto to LaGuardia, Dulles to Heathrow, Heathrow to Marco Polo, Bergamo to Bratislava, Bratislava to Bergamo, Traviso to Ferihegy-1, Ferihegy-1 to Traviso, Marco Polo to Frankfurt, Frankfurt to Johannesburg, Jo’burg to Port Elizabeth, PE to Jo’burg, Jo’burg to Singapore, and Singapore to Tulla.

* 13 Castles visited (not counting those passed by train or car)

* 1 day gained.

* 6 new animals eaten: Bison, Buffalo, Spider-crab, Kudu, Ostrich, Springbok

* Countless physicists met, wines tasted, beers drained, trains caught, expensive phone calls made

After this post, this journal will sit dormant until I escape again, which will most likely be sometime next year. Thanks to all the folks who have been reading and especially to those who have been commenting; it’s always good to know people at home are still interested. It’s been great to see some of you already and it’s helped with the dreaded counter culture shock (how the bloody hell does one validate a train ticket again?). Also, ciao to all the folks I’ve not met who have been reading; It appears there have been a few.

For all those who have been agonising over the titles (i.e. either Matt or no-one), find in the comments the list of where these titles come from. Maybe if you are killing time at work you can test yourself and post your score. Without Google.



( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 25th, 2007 06:49 am (UTC)
06/12/06: Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Red Right Hand
04/01/07: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Californication
05/01/07: Everclear, Santa Monica
05/01/07: The Doors, LA Woman
06/01/07: Theme, Robin Hood: Men in Tights [already, I was reaching]
08/01/07: Dolly Parton, Nine to Five
11/01/07: Dolly Parton, Nine to Five
11/01/07: Steppenwolf, Born to be Wild
12/01/07: Norah Jones, I Turned Your Picture to the Wall [the 1st hard one]
16/01/07: Meatloaf, Two Out of Three Ain’t Bad
20/01/07: Norah Jones, Turn Me On
25/01/07: Nick Cave and Kylie Minogue, Where the Wild Roses Grow
26/01/07: The Beatles, Ballad of John and Yoko
28/01/07: De La Soul, Ring Ring Ring (Ha Ha Hey)
31/01/07: Norah Jones, Sinkin’ Soon
04/02/07: Tuxedomoon (Nouvelle Vague), In a Manner of Speaking
07/02/07: Anthrax, Milk
12/02/07: The Rolling Stones, You Can’t Always Get What You Want
17/02/07: Cold Chisel, Bow River
19/02/07: Bob Marley, Buffalo Soldier
24/02/07: Talking Heads, Road to Nowhere
25/02/07: Beasts of Bourbon, Hard For You
01/03/07: Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show, The Cover of the Rolling Stone
06/03/07: The Animals (The Angels), We Gotta Get Out of This Place
09/03/07: Peter Malick Group & Norah Jones, New York City
12/03/07: Billy Joel, Uptown Girl
13/03/07: Type O Negative, Hey Pete
14/03/07: 42nd Street Soundtrack, 42nd Street
15/03/07: Cold Chisel, Northbound
18/03/07: Cold Chisel, Northbound
18/03/07: The Clash, London Calling
21/03/07: Dire Straits, Industrial Disease
22/03/07: The Kinks, Sunny Afternoon
24/03/07: Dean Martin, That’s Amore
28/03/07: The Cruel Sea, Black Stick
03/04/07: Alexei Sayle, Stupid Noises
05/04/07: Cold Chisel, Flame Trees
10/04/07: Cold Chisel, Rosaline
16/04/07: Dire Straits, Romeo & Juliet
23/04/07: Blondie, Heart of Glass
27/04/07: Talking Heads, Once in a Lifetime
03/05/07: The Screaming Jets, Better
08/05/07: Beasts of Bourbon, I Don’t Care About Nothing Anymore
14/05/07: Aerosmith, Train Kept A Rollin’
24/05/07: The Cruel Sea, To Fast For Me
28/05/07: Billy Joel, Scenes from an Italian Restaurant
08/06/07: Billy Joel, River of Dreams
10/06/07: Dire Straits, Calling Elvis
15/06/07: Alice In Chains, Grind
19/06/07: Alice In Chains, Grind
01/07/07: The Beatles, Back in the USSR
03/07/07: Tone Loc, Funky Cold Medina
09/07/07: Beasts of Bourbon, Little Animals
17/07/07: AC/DC, Highway to Hell
17/07/07: Mudhoney, Touch Me I’m Sick
26/07/07: Muse, Sing for Absolution
01/08/07: Cold Chisel, Merry-Go-Round
02/08/07: Billy Joel, The Entertainer
08/08/07: Tool, Die Eier Von Satan
08/08/07: Mitchell Trio et. al., Leaving on a Jet Plane
15/08/07: The Dead Kennedys, Holiday in Cambodia
17/08/07: Harry Chapin, The Cat’s in the Cradle
27/08/07: Cold Chisel, Breakfast at Sweetheart’s
06/09/07: Soggy Bottom Boys, Man of Constant Sorrow
08/09/07: The Doors, Roadhouse Blues
10/09/07: John Phillip Baptiste (Tom Waits), Sea of Love
17/09/07: The Eurythmics, Missionary Man
25/09/07: The Beatles, Get Back
Sep. 25th, 2007 09:36 am (UTC)
Hey dude,

It's been awesome keeping up with your adventures here, seing what you've been doing. It was even better being able to share a little slice of them with you directly!

A comment that I will make about your journal generally: It has always been a pleasure coming to read your entries that are put so eloquently with a grasp of the English language that few of us ever manage to obtain. Greater still have been the rather unique and in depth commentaries on the situations with which you have been involved. For some of us it is enough to detail the events which we experienced, however yours went a huge degree further and reflected on how these events correlate to the situations you've been in. Add to that the witty ruminations on the social and political climates you've experienced and the real cultural lessons you've picked up and it all culminated into an enjoyable read, no matter what the subject!

Hope you're feeling good to be home, and I guess the next question would be, what happens now in the life of Paul F?
Sep. 26th, 2007 05:15 am (UTC)
Aww thanks! That was quite the articulate comment, so I don't feel you need worry. The parts where I backpacked around were certainly the best, and it was most gratifying to share some of that with you.

As for now, I'm going into my cave in Thesisland to shun the light of day for a few months.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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