Wondering why I persist in posting notes about vacations long past? Me too, sorta. It’s because of The Notebook Project. The notebook project is my way of making memories last by making blog posts about recent vacation trips. Perhaps it is more artfully put this way:

Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.
The Sunscreen song

OK, so there Mary Schmich is talking about advice. The part I am interested in is concerning nostalgia. Reminiscing about those past trips provides a way for me to share my experiences, give advice to those seeking similar adventures, and trying to see what I can learn about the whole deal. In short I am “fishing the past from the disposal, wiping it off, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than it’s worth.”

Why the Notebook Project

When I was a kid all I wanted to do was go camping. I was crazy for exploring and camping with the Boy Scouts was an outlet for it. I would go camping every month with the troop. Some summers I would attend one, two, or even three week-long trips in the woods learning, adventuring, and getting away from it all. Early on my Dad told me to keep a journal of my activities. “You’ll appreciate it later on” he told me.

He was right. I didn’t keep a journal (for very long.) And now I wish I did.

What is the Notebook Project?

Well, it has nothing to do with notebooks. Well, except for the fact that my first ill-fated camping journal was in one of those black and white speckled deals. Today the interwebs give me a much better way of stapling my notes, links to other sites, photos, etc than a notebook ever could so that’s what I’m doing. This explains why I keep writing about my Israel trip, or crossbay swim, or anything else even though it’s long since done.

Incremental Improvement

True to my cubicle roots I am using the Six Sigma technique of incremental improvement to get my blogging project done. There is no end to the amount of photos, links, thoughts, etc that I want to include in these posts. The trouble is, accumulating all of that plus a after-the-fact write up is really difficult. In the end, I decided that the first step on my critical path of building the Notebook Project was to get ‘something’ written. Sometimes the writing will be good. Sometimes it will be bad. Rarely will it be complete the first time or include photos. Photo editing and uploading is the bane of my blogging experience. But eventually photos will be added, summaries will be left, and questions will be answered.

How to help!

Just leave comments on the posts as they come out. Questions, comments, requests. Ex. I’m a lot more likely to finish a series more quickly if there is a comment similar to ‘Can’t wait to read what’s next!’ or ‘Would love to see the photos!’, etc.

What’s in the Pipeline?

I just got back from a non-honeymoon honeymoon in Rio de Janeiro after vacationing / getting married in Mexico so I should write about that soon. There is a ton left to write about in the my Mt Zion biblical archaeology trip playing Indiana Jones in Jerusalem and Palestine. I haven’t even touched my week trip in Germany’s Rhineland or the week of bachelor parties in Munich for Oktoberfest including side trips to Andechs, Zugspitze, Fusen and more. Spain, London, Italy… Man I have work to do!

Comments (4)

Germany trip is coming. It will be in 2 parts – the Rhineland, which I travelled with my wife and Munich / Bavaria – which I did for my bachelor party. Now, if some of those people who went on my bachelor party trip would care to write some guest posts….

I would love to add some side notes to the Germany adventures. It was such a great opportunuty for close friends and friends of friends to come together to celebrate Ted’s bachelor party. Each of us had preconceptions and anticipation for how the party would unfold and it did not disappoint. The feel good friendliness permeated through our outgoing personalities and comingled and gelled with the locals. We sang with them old beer drinking songs, shared a multitude of toasts that were a tribute to the unabashed flavor and respect for the purely brewed libation of delicate decadence. A truely marvelous mixture of a hopped up barley alcohloic brew thats sole purpose was to be devoured in a respect for the people, tradition and most of all the festival atmosphere.

Johnathoan, the part that I enjoyed best was a feeling that we just ‘belonged’ in Bavaria. A common thread was that it seems that each of us had such a great time that we felt cheated by fate that we had only discovered Bavaria now when it had obviously been awesome for centuries!

A great time. Thanks for coming and we’ll have to write that account soon!

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