Category Archives: Travel

To The Beach

Sunday, at 6 am, I fly out of Burlington International Airport headed to Pensacola to begin my training as a certified interpretive guide. I don’t expect this to be an easy training. I expect it to be hard work, but I think it will be worth it. I’ll also get to see my parents who are coming down to Pensacola to spend some time with me.
The only problem with traveling anywhere from Vermont is that the state only has three airports. One only goes to Boston; one is for private planes only; and Burlington seems to have you always fly out between 5:15 am and 6:30 am. It also seems that flights only come in after 10 pm. I never have understood what the airport does during daylight hours. I have flown out and returned only once during daylight hours and that was a direct flight to and from Chicago. I’ve never found another flight during daylight hours. It’s quite frustrating.

The Reveal

I teased y’all Thursday about something that might be coming to fruition. It looks like I will get to do the training to become a Certified Interpretive Giide. Education is a major part of my job and that includes giving tours. It’s also a nice addition to my CV/resume. I had looked into the training a few months ago, but none of the training sessions were nearby, so I put the idea on the back burner. Then, it became a possibility when a training session opened up in Vermont. As I looked at it though, the timing of the training interfered with my New York City trip at Thanksgiving and my birthday. Once I realized that the museum would only pay for the training and not the travel (major budget cuts at the university), I realized it didn’t matter where I did the training. So the next desirable place was Birmingham, Alabama. I’d be close enough that my family could visit. However, it coincided with one of the programs I have been planning, so I took another look at the schedule. The next closest to my family was Pensacola, Florida (hence the beach pictures). The only drawback to Pensacola is that they haven’t yet made their quota for the number of students necessary. Once I sign up, they still need two more students to sign up for the training class to make. If it doesn’t make, there is one in Montgomery, Alabama in the new year. That would put me really close to family. I might also consider going somewhere that might be fun to visit. My preference is Pensacola but we will see how that goes.


I have some news. It’s not official yet, but should be on Monday. It’s not a new job, but a possible new training. Stay tuned for more. The main news is where I might be going.



I’m going home today. I always hate leaving Montréal. The food and drinks are always good. The men are hot. The saunas are fun, even if all you do is watch. Campus and Stock Bar are so much fun, with their nude dancers and lap dances. Ludwig at Campus is so sexy. I doubt I spelled his name right, but he was obviously of good blond German stock. He’s training to be a fireman, and he could rescue me any day. It’s great to get to know the dancers a little bit and have some fun with them.
Those were all things I did in the evenings. During the day Saturday, I walked up Mount Royal which is about a mile up stairs. It’s quite a hike, but the view is breathtaking. During the day Sunday, I went to the Museum of Fine Arts, which has an absolutely stunning collection. Today, I’ll probably just have breakfast, pack, and head home. By the way, I stayed at L’Escogriffe B&B this time. Denis, the proprietor is absolutely charming and makes the most wonderful breakfasts. It’s not expensive and while the rooms are small and there is a shared bathroom it’s well worth the stay. I recommend it as it is also in the heart of the Gay Village.
One of these days for Labor Day, I’ll go to Southern Decadence in New Orleans, but until then Montréal is a nice alternative.


First, I want to say thank you all for your positive comments yesterday on my “Doc” post. It meant a lot to me that you guys shared your stories.
I’m going to be traveling today. I’m headed to Montreal for the weekend. It’s going to be just a nice relaxing weekend out of town. You see, my little town has a huge Labor Day Festival and Parade. It’s so chaotic for this little town, and I just want to be away from it all.

NYC Extended Weekend

As I said Monday, it rained on us all day. We mostly relaxed, though we did go see the Flatiron Building. What a magnificent piece of architecture it is! While in the area we had lunch at Maison Kayser. We both ate the croque monsieur and some of the wonderful desserts that Maison Kayser has. Susan had the chocolate cake, and I had the salted caramel eclair. Both were out of this word delicious. We then took home some apple, pear, and lemon tarts, along with their special Father’s Day cake. Susan said the pear tart was juicy and delicious. We both tried the apple tart with was also juicy and delicious. The lemon tart was, well, tart and delicious. The Father’s Day cake was indescribably good. We ate dinner at Coppola’s East again because the restaurant we wanted to go to had suddenly closed the week before.
On Tuesday, I got on the train with sad farewells to Susan and headed back to Vermont. The trip home was a lot less eventful than the trip down.

NYC Weekend

After a disaster of a trip down, after the Gala and all the hard work and long nights associated with that, the weekend  has been great. My friend Susan was a wonderful host and has made this trip to NYC terrific. Saturday during the day, we kind of laid low since we were going to a Broadway show that night. We saw The Book of Mormon which was fantastic, irreverent, vulgar, and just plain hilarious. After the show, we walked to Times Square. I cannot describe the awe of Time Square at late at night. There were so many people, so many light. it was just amazing. I don’t think there is anything like Times Square at night in this world.

On Sunday morning as we were on our way to lunch, we stopped at The Little Church Around the Corner, also known officially as The Church of the Transfiguration. A few days before Christmas in 1870, Joseph Jefferson, an actor renowned for his portrayal of Rip Van Winkle, approached the rector of the now-defunct Church of the Atonement to request a funeral for his friend and fellow actor, George Holland. Upon learning that the deceased was an actor, the rector refused to hold a funeral for the man in his church. Joseph Jefferson persisted, and asked if there was a church in the area that would hold services for his friend. The rector said, “I believe there is a little church around the corner where it might be done.” Jefferson replied, “Then I say to you, sir, God bless the little church around the corner.” To this day, the church maintains close ties with the theatre. It has served as the national headquarters of the Episcopal Actors’ Guild since its founding in 1923, by the third rector, the Dr. Randolph Ray. The church is a beautiful little neo-gothic style church influenced heavily by the  Anglo-Catholic movement within the Episcopal Church from its founding. The complex has grown somewhat haphazardly over the years, and for this reason it is sometimes called the “Holy Cucumber Vine”.

Sunday afternoon, we went to Macy’s. I was interested in seeing what they had at their Pride store. The mezzanine level is rainbow colors everywhere. It so refreshing to see Pride everywhere. The rainbow flag flies at most hotels, some have rainbow lights, mine has small rainbow flags with the hotel name on them in the lobby. Of course, while at Macy’s we saw Herald Square. We have been taking it easy and not trying to rush and see everything. It’s been a nice vacation. Last night when I got back to the hotel, they had complimentary champagne for the guests. We had a wonderful dinner at Coppola’s East, a great Italian restaurant,

It’s rainy today, so I am not sure exactly what we will be doing. I do know whatever we do, it will be fun because Susan is with me.


What a fucking disaster the trip down was! We were driving a 27′ long truck which is just hard to handle. Luckily, I was not the one driving. However, we did get pulled over by the police once because we passed a truck inspection spot and didn’t stop. Then we were in two accidents. Ugh! It could hardly have gone any worse. We made it though and got the truck unloaded and ready for the Gala event tonight. Tonight, we will start setting up around 3:45 and be “on” for the guests, happy cheerful faces and all. We probably won’t finish until well after midnight tonight. The trip from hell has only just begun. Luckily, once the Gala is over with, I meet with my friend Susan, and we have plans for a much better trip, which includes a Broadway play and who knows what else.

Getting Home: The Nightmare Version

(For the sake of simplicity, all times shown are Eastern Daylight Time) 
Last Saturday, I was scheduled to fly from Midland, Texas to Burlington, Vermont via Dallas and Washington, D.C. then drive to my apt; I would have arrived there early Saturday evening. Sunday would be a day to unwind before going back to work on Monday. 
SATURDAY morning, I was notified that due to severe weather, my flights out of Midland and Dallas were cancelled. I was given a new itinerary for Sunday leaving Midland on a 6am flight (much earlier than the original Saturday flight time), again flying via Dallas and Washington, D.C., and arriving in Burlington late Sunday afternoon. Although this change in plans was annoying and disruptive, a one-day delay was still somewhat acceptable even with no day off before returning to work.
I arrived at Midland Airport SUNDAY morning at the ass-crack of dawn to begin my journey. I got as far as Dallas. While waiting to board my 9:57am flight to Washington D.C., a notice went up that my flight was delayed. Eventually, it was cancelled. There was no co-pilot! I then had to wait on a loooong line to speak to an agent to rebook the rest of my trip home. I didn’t fly out of Dallas until 1:45pm that afternoon now flying via Birmingham-Philadelphia-Burlington.
If this nightmare had a silver lining, it would be that the Birmingham Airport has a Jim and Nick’s BBQ restaurant. With 34 restaurants in 7 states, Jim and Nick’s BBQ has been a Southern institution since 1985.
But I digress. The nightmare continued. We were supposed to leave Birmingham at 5:53pm. We boarded on time, but sat on the tarmac for an additional 90 minutes for reasons which were never explained. This delay was just long enough for me to miss my connecting flight from Philadelphia to Burlington. When we landed in Philly, I already knew there were no more flights to Burlington until the next afternoon. I stood on another loooong line to speak to an agent about a hotel voucher and to verify I could fly out of Philly on Monday’s afternoon flight. The flight to Burlington and my seat on it were confirmed, but there was no hotel voucher. I had to find a nearby hotel, book a room, and pay full price for it. I also had to pay for a taxi to get there. There was airport shuttle service, but by then, I wasn’t up to waiting for it. It was already after 11pm. I had been up and trying to get home for almost 20 hours!
­MONDAY, I checked out of the hotel late morning and cabbed it back to the airport. I had lunch there, and worked on my Museum Studies homework until it was time to board for the last leg of my journey. The flight left Philadelphia on time at 4:29pm arriving at Burlington Airport at 5:50pm. My luggage, having taken other flights on Sunday of which I have no knowledge, was waiting for me in Baggage Claim. After stopping for dinner on the drive home, I finally… finally… walked in my apt. door at 8pm.
A trip from Texas to Vermont that should have taken less than 12 hours instead took 3 days. For me, that is a true definition of a nightmare.

Lost in Travels

Actually, just stuck in Philadelphia. I’ll write more tomorrow when I’m not quite so tired.

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