Friday, May 4, 2012


Is it at all ironic that I'm taking a couple of Moleskine notebooks TO Italy?

I've discovered that stamping my cobblestones stamp onto the cover with fabric paint does NOT work. Ah. Oh well. I read that regular Sharpies just rub off as well. Acrylic paint, maybe? Give it up altogether?

I'm planning to wear a travel vest ( - they're really nice!) at least in the airports and on the planes to and from Italy. Basically, it's an organizational insecurity thing.

Get completely separated from your carryon against your will and without warning on a rushed boarding for a long flight, and you might very well understand my inclination for the vest. Delta rushed me into a bulkhead seat at the last minute and then stowed my carryon somewhere on the other end of the plane. They let me find it myself after they let everyone else get past me and I missed my connecting flight in Atlanta. I had nothing to do on that flight through a storm than to sit between some very unfriendly men who talked loudly around me instead of asking to switch seats.

I'm not afraid of flying. I'm afraid of being trapped and bored. So I'll have various methods of entertainment on hand. Kindle books on my phone, a portable crochet project, and a Moleskine for journaling. Ha ha, it'll go in the iPad pocket of my vest. Sort of the original iPad. I'm not taking that easily-stolen device with me on this trip, but I am taking the mini-me -- my iPhone 4s. It'll be in airplane mode most of the time, so all my use of it will be offline unless I come across a place with free wifi.

I'd really like to have a decent travel journal when I'm finished and I won't necessarily be sharing everything from it online, so I'm using coercion via classy notebook. I bought it, I'd better use it, right?

Something to look back on in my old age and remember the once-in-a-lifetime trip I took while I still knew people who were traveling ... somewhere. Obviously, my plans to take trips with my phantom husband have been abandoned.

If I had married some local guy, chances are that he wouldn't appreciate a vacation like this and I'd throw away what I wanted yet again for some yahoo wanted instead. Or better yet, some guy who can't mange his own money and looks at me as a way to get my money for himself. I've been there before, and it isn't like I'm exactly wealthy. I'm frugal, though. Sometimes those are confused for one another. All I do is spend cautiously with an eye to the future.

Nope, I definitely am not waiting on a locust to take over my life. No more mooches.

But that does not mean that if some great (responsible) guy with a similar mindset to mine comes into my life, that I wouldn't be thrilled to have him along on a travel adventure. It's great fun to have a friend to cut up with. But most people my age or thereabouts have kids and wouldn't give me the time of day for that very reason. Younger man? Oh sure, but can he pay his own way? Older man? Only if he isn't looking at me to be his nursemaid / servant. Equal or nothing.

I've been reading Dave Fox's book Globejotting. He's shared some useful tips for travel journaling. I need to do some pre-journaling.

To whom it may concern: stop being hateful because I'm going. The next time I put out that open invitation -- do what it takes if you want to go. Don't sit on your butt and whine that you want me to pay thousands of dollars so that you can go for free. My days of paying for others' airline tickets so they can brag about how well-traveled they are are OVER.

What I've made of my life has been disappointing to me, and to a few others who are angry they couldn't tell me what to do because I went my own way. But you know what? My opinion about this is the only one that matters. This is something awesome that I want to do just because I want to do something more extraordinary than sitting in a redneck little town hoping an inbred local will think I'm good enough for him.

So stop hating. Try being happy and supportive for me, for a change. That jealousy is going to eat you up. This is something I want and I'm taking the risk in hopes of having some happy memories.

Who knows? Maybe being in the presence of the Pope will be a tiny blessing in my life.

Maybe I'll have some interesting stories to tell and great pictures to share. Maybe I'll write another book. (This would be my fifth, if you count my photo books. Lol). I started out with photos and captions but as you can see with my blog, I've really been ramping up the longer writings.

I'm unsure of any mass appeal, but I think there are a handful of people who tolerate my pink text long enough to chuckle at a thing or two that I've written. Or in one case, to have enough consideration for me regarding the painful subject I wrote about a few days ago, and not make petty public gripes about my formatting instead of reading the content and (horrors!) understanding what has shaped me as a person. Have some empathy. We didn't all have it easy in childhood.

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