She go from Nashville to Norway, Bonaire to Zimbabwe,
Chicago to Czechoslovakia and back!
Nashville = no
Just through the airport. And that never counts. And I might even be confusing it with Memphis, as I did when I originally started writing this post.
Norway = yes
Location background: One of the most interesting things about Norway is that it isn’t in the European Union. They’re simply too rich from oil to bother with such shenanigans.
Personal background: For months and months, I felt tormented by the fact that the host and creator of Don’t Worry About The Government, the political podcast that I’m on, had been to Norway and I hadn’t. He barely travels; I do it constantly. And yet there was something on his list that wasn’t on mine. It became an obsession.
- This picture I took of a caterpillar in Bergen.
- When the conductor on the train led me to another car to plug my laptop in on the train.
- Getting a fancy meal cooked by my smiley, warm host.
Lowlights: Every time I had to spend money in this exorbitantly expensive country.
Bonaire = no
It’s a Dutch-owned island in the Caribbean that no one has heard of outside of this song. Why the hell would I have been there?
Zimbabwe = no
The hope is to hit it on my tentative Fall 2011 Africa trip, with some help from Manu, the Zimbabwean that we had on DWATG a few episodes back.
Chicago = yes
Chicago was an odd place to me, feeling like it was trapped in the 1970’s or 1980’s. Prices seemed unnaturally low.
- It’s my favorite downtown in the world.
- Meeting Ethan Cheng, who got me onto a hit political podcast.
Lowlights: Having to deal with the indignity of being told that Chicago-style deep dish should be referred to as ‘pizza’.
Czechoslovakia = no, but Czech Republic and Slovakia = yes
Having dissolved in 1993, I wasn’t given the chance to visit it as a united country, but I was in Prague in 2004 and Bratislava in 2010.
Prague Highlights: Along with Berlin, the only place I stayed a week in, due to having a hang-out group from the hostel. The biggest event was when we went to a bar, I met a girl, we danced (read: grinded), all of us left the bar and the girl lost all of the English she had been speaking to me earlier, then we lost everyone else, and I was contending with her drunken confusion as she moaned “Miláčku, Miláááááááčku!” (a Czech term of endearment), ignoring my pleas for her to remember my native language as I tried to find our respective friends within the snow and ice.
Prague Lowlights: Having people literally walk across the sidewalk, just to bump into me.
Bratislava Highlights: Getting a successful hitch from Vienna Airport directly to my host’s place in Bratislava, by Slovak Jews that told me their personal story from the end of Communism.
Bratislava Lowlights: Realizing why everyone said not to stay in Bratislava for more than a day, as there just is nothing in the city other than the nice people that I met.
All pictures can be found at http://flickr.com/roniweiss