Travel posts.

I’ve just started what I expect will be the longest trip I’ve ever taken. The plan is to take 3 months to bike across Europe on a route called Euro Velo 6, or ‘The Rivers Route’. (See the official site, or the interactive map). The 2,270 mile route is the most well-developed of the Euro Velo Routes. It follows the Loire river through France and into Germany, and then it follows the Danube out to the Black […]

Biking across Europe on Euro Velo 6

I kicked off my gappaticaltirement with a wilderness meditation retreat through Impermanent Sangha in Boulder, CO. Insight meditation retreats in the US are almost always indoors, so I felt like this was a unique and appropriate way to set the tone for my upcoming European bike trip. The idea was to do five days of backpacking and hiking in the mountains near Leadville, Colorado, combind with a lot of meditation and just dwelling in nature, and to conduct […]

Colorado Wilderness Meditation Retreat

Is it a gap year? A sabbatical? An early retirement? Well… kind of. It is what I like to call a gappaticaltirement and it’s what I’ll be doing starting this July.  I have a string of adventures that I want to do that I can’t pull off with a house and a full-time job. So, after five years of blissful homeostasis, I’ve sold the house and I’m winding down my job at Creare. In six weeks […]

Gappaticaltirement (2015-?)

 We’re back in beautiful New Hampshire again, and as always I’ve fallen behind in my blog while tending to last-minute logistics. However, the last few days weren’t any less fun than the first ones. We decided to take a break from the constant planning and navigating by going on an official bus tour from Galway. Of course, we also had to compete with the ten thousand other tourists whose bus tours were following the exact […]

Closing out the UK Trip

PART I As in any extended trip, we have had some moments of travail during our travel. The first of these was our attempt to bike the 42 kilometer Greenway from Achill to Westport, Ireland. Reviews of this trip described rolling green hills, a car-free path from town to town, and views of the Irish coastline. We even found that electric bikes were available to make the considerable length (~30 miles) do-able. The night before […]

The Day(s) of Disaster (Guest Posting by Dee)

SLIGO, IRELAND (Note that I’m posting this a month or two after I wrote it…) The ferry from Holyhead, Wales to Dublin, Ireland seemed more like a repurposed cruise ship than what I picture as a ferry. It had 11 separate levels, one of which was filled mostly by private cabins with beds. It had a cinema, several cafeterias, a small casino, and of course numerous bars. Most of its levels were used to store […]

Sligo, Ireland

Cardiff, Wales  After Oxford we continued onwards to Cardiff, the capital of Wales. I settled in for a nice long trip, but when I was awoken from my nap about an hour later, we were already there. In fact, we were so unprepared that by the time we got our belongings together we had been locked on the train and had to summon the conductor. I guess these high-speed train make quick work of such […]

Cardiff, Wales

Just before visiting Oxford, I re-read Bill Bryson’s chapter on Oxford in “Notes from a Small Island”. Wherein, he complains bitterly about how Oxford has been blighted by ugly architecture and too many parking spaces. It was a nice reality-check for me because upon visiting Oxford I found it to be incredibly well-preserved and beautiful, confirming once and for all that Bill Bryson is a whiner. However, I did get the impression that Oxford focuses […]


The Thames  Our London trip continued with us doing the most touristy and shockingly expensive activities that we could find.  For instance, we visited the Churchill War Rooms – the underground bunker from which Churchill directed Britain’s part in WWII. Admission was around US$30 a piece, and the museum was more of a shrine to Churchill than a museum of WWII history.  It made me curious about Churchill as a person, but the museum was […]

London III

After Dee and I finally gave up trying to get Indian Tourist Visas (only India could screw up the application process that badly), we decided to simply visit the UK for the next two weeks. We have our first few nights booked at a wonderful hostel in Earl’s Court, and after that we are just going to wing it. Scotland may be in the cards, or perhaps Wales, or maybe even Ireland?   The trip […]

London II