Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Discourses on Livy

So it has begun.

Plans for my royal visit to Europe are a box of rolled nickels closer.

I've started putting money into my "Luxembourg Fund", and at the rate I'm going, I really will be sitting in a cafe in Luxembourg within five years. I even have a married German woman in mind (See answers 19 and 20 to my questionnaire below)!

Europe has been my goal in life for several years now. I've been studying, researching, and planning my trip, but I can never seem to raise the money. Well, all that changed today. I've dedicated the many 7-Eleven Double Gulp cups-full of change to my trip, and after an hour of counting, have $120 towards my goal.

The next fundraising event? Selling my car for parts, then holding a garage sale to get rid of a bunch of clutter, then selling a bunch of my more obscure/rare computers on eBay. Paring down my video game collection is also a possibility...

As for where in Europe? I'm planning to visit places that are sort of off the radar of typical tourists. Luxembourg is a given, as I've had an inexplicable fascination with the Grand Duchy since I was eight or nine years old. Belgium is a possibility, too, unless they separate by the time I get there (in which case, I imagine I'd be visiting Flanders and/or Wallonia). I want to visit Germany, too, and maybe Austria and Holland. Liechtenstein and Switzerland are a must.

Gotta hit Scandinavia, too. Norway's sounding good (Oslo and Bergen stand out), maybe Sweden or Denmark, too. Finland? Why not?

May even visit my ancestral homelands of England and Northern Ireland.

Places I'm going to avoid? Italy, Spain, Portugal, and Greece. Cyprus, too. Why? Everyone seems to want to go there. Although I may visit Turkey (Istanbul, not Constantinople), maybe Andorra or Gibraltar?

Time and money permitting, some Eastern European countries have caught my eye - Slovenia for example. Romania sounds cool, maybe Poland and Hungary?

Guess we'll see how much I can save. There's more to see in Europe than my three week vacation time will permit.