Drive Around The World (Australia)

One family, one car, one year, one planet

New York, NY USA to Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada, Day 153-166, 31 August – 13 September 2008

New York, NY USA to Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada

Day 153-166

31 August – 13 September 2008

2,425 km

Total: 19,663 km

Soundtrack:

‘New York, New York’ – Cat Power (OK, and some bloke named Sinatra)

‘Subway Train’ – New York Dolls

‘This Mess We’re In’ – PJ Harvey & Thom York

‘Take the ‘A’ Train’ – Billy Strayhorn/Duke Ellington

‘West 42nd Street’ – John Coltrane

‘Lullaby of Broadway’ – Al Dubin and Harry Warren Connie Francis, Doris Day, et al

‘53rd & 3rd‘ – The Ramones

‘New England’ – Jonathan Richman

‘The State of Massachusetts’ – Dropkick Murphys

SK: From Corning, NY, we headed south into Pennsylvania, driving along beautiful country roads, sharing the bitumen with horse and carts driven by Amish men, big red barns, you name it  – picturesque farmland America. We travelled along the Grand Army of the Republic Highway for some distance, and ending up in New Jersey. After about five hours of driving through rolling green hills and across rivers, we all cheered when we saw the signs for New York.

DB: I have always dreamed of driving into Manhattan, and now we had the chance. Complicating the plan was that we wanted to be able to drive onto the island by bridge – and ideally one of the famous ones – to take in the views, rather than tunnel, and we wanted to be able to drive the length of Manhattan and into Nyack, where my cousin Greg and his family live. So, circuitously, we headed south to go north.

Negotiating some of the more hectic and confusing freeways, expressways and turnpikes took us via the initially elusive New Jersey Turnpike and then across Staten Island, after paying an $8 bridge crossing. And the bridge wasn’t even that great. Then, the Staten Island Expressway took us over the fabled Hudson River, up through Brooklyn and, almost all of a sudden, over the Manhattan Bridge, in sight of the Brooklyn Bridge, and – ta-dah – we were plonked smack in the middle of the lower east side of Manhattan island. Sandy and I were giddy, and I had a dopey grin on my face that seemed to last days.

(Pic: Driving across the Manhattan Bridge)

Crawling along in traffic, with the mandatory throng of pedestrians ogling us, some people in a Lexus four-wheel-drive pulled up along side and gasped when we confirmed what we were doing and from where we had driven. Then, two of New York’s finest who were walking along the street came over for a chat. One of the policemen pushed his most-recognisable police hat up onto the back of his head and almost swore when he worked out our story, but refrained when he spied our grinning children in the back seat. Sandy got him to take our camera and snap a shot of us.

(Pic: Snapped by New York’s finest, Broadway NYC)

After a couple of detours due to one-way and blocked-off streets we eventually turned right to head north on Broadway, which runs the length of the island. Up through Greenwich Village, touching a corner of Central Park, through the Upper West Side, Harlem and Yonkers and eventually, as the sun set, off the island. And just as quickly and dramatically our day’s journey had changed from meandering countryside to the hectic bustle of New York City, we were suddenly again in what seemed to be a different world. Now, driving in the dark for the first time in months, we traversed small elegant towns with stately homes. A dozen times we thought we were lost until a friendly street sign lit up in the headlights. And, after a long and bewildering drive, we parked in Greg’s driveway in Nyack.

(Pic: Heading north on Manhattan Island, NYC)

Getting out of the car my legs felt like jelly. My jaw was sore from clenching my teeth and my arms throbbing from holding on to the steering wheel too tight. The drive through Manhattan was testing – New York cabbies certainly lived up to their reputation of treating the roadways as battlefields – but I still had this stupid grin on my face.

Even though it was pushing 9pm, Greg’s wife Kim-Adele served up a beautiful meal, and Greg and I caught up. Their daughter Grace immediately latched on to Maddy, and Raffy was smitten with Noah. Greg’s dad Alex, my mother’s first cousin, was also there to meet us.

For the next couple of days we spent our daylight hours wandering the streets of Manhattan and our evenings hanging out with Greg and Kim-Adele. Greg and I spent some quality time talking about family and the circumstances that brought us into the world on opposite geographic sides, and jamming on guitars as we had done eighteen years ago when we were last here and some twenty years ago when Greg visited us in Australia.

(Pic: Maddy and Raffy look out over Manhattan from the Empire State Building)

We joined the throng at the top of the Empire State building, though were disappointed that current renovations had prevented us from indulging in much of the building’s interior’s deco glory. We swooned at my favourite building, the Chrysler, and wondered about the difference between commercial opportunism and art at MoMA. We treated ourselves to NYC’s famous hot-dogs, as well as kosher pretzels and knishes, and were amused that in a city where the world’s most famous acts of terrorism took place our Muslim street vendors were only too helpful and welcoming.

(Pic: Hot Diggaty Dawg, NYC)

(Pic: A Dandy Warhol?)

One large and yet unexpected feature of our New York jaunt was it coinciding with our friend and colleague Mary K’s brief stopover. We met up for a drink next door to the infamous Chelsea Hotel, a one-time home for the likes of Mark Twain, Leonard Cohen, Arthur Miller, Simone de Beauvoir, Jean-Paul Sartre, Stanley Kubrick, William S. Burrows, Alan Ginsberg and Tennessee Williams. Jack Kerouak wrote ‘On the Road’ there, and the Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix and Dee Dee Ramone ruined a few rooms. Of course, dodgy Pistols’ bass player Sid Vicious’ murder of his girlfriend Nancy Spungen here did nothing to dim the Chelsea’s gritty reputation. Mary and I caught up after Maddy and Raffy charged up to her along W 23rd St and gave her a huge hug.

(Pic: Danny and Raffy at the Apollo Theatre, Harlem)

One of the highlights for us was travelling uptown to Harlem on the ‘A’ train to visit some historic sights and generally hang out. I gawked at the Apollo Theatre at 125th Street – a venue that provided the stage that introduced the world to Ella Fitzgerald at the tender age of seventeen on November 21, 1934. The story is that, as essentially a street kid, Ella entered a talent contest wearing a threadbare dress and work boots. She won the contest with her extraordinary voice, rhythm and timing, but the promoter refused to give her the prize of some live shows because she was “too ugly”. She persisted, returned, and soon changed the way vocalists interpreted jazz forever. The venue took a number of unknowns under her broad wing and released them as stars – Billie Holiday, James Brown, Diana Ross and the Supremes, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin, Sarah Vaughan, to name a few ragtag wannabes. Mary met up with us again here and together we visited another fabled music venue around the corner – the beautiful art-deco Lenox Lounge, where Holiday, John Coltrane and Miles Davis strutted their stuff, and, later, Malcolm X held clandestine meetings.

(Pic: With Mary outside the Lenox Lounge, Harlem)

A lovely mid-afternoon walk through Central Park took us to Strawberry Fields, named after John Lennon who spent much time there, and then past his then residence, the Dakota Building, where he was accosted by Mark Chapman, with fatal consequences.

(Pic: Sandy at Strawberry Fields, Central Park)

One trip back from the island to Nyack after a long day’s tourist toil we forwent the subway and instead took a water taxi up the Hudson River. We weren’t going to have time to get up close and personal with the Statue of Liberty, but the boat took us past in the setting sun and gave us an ever changing view of this great city from the water. A great way to end a great day.

(Pic: Aboard the Water Taxi on the Hudson River, NY)

New York has always held a special place in our hearts, and, once again, we added it to our growing list of “I could live here.” Maybe one day, but once again it was time to saddle up and continue north and east.

We left Nyack and meandered towards the famous Catskill Mountains, where some of the greatest comedians of a generation or two ago plied their trade and into the equally famous Woodstock, replete with shops selling faux hippy clothes and incense, and older adults who should know better than persist with long, designer dreadlocks. We thought we found Max Yasgur’s famous field where, in 1969, Hendrix, Joplin, the Grateful Dead, The Who and Neil Young, to name but a few, blasted almost half a million people into hippy heaven, but no signage confirmed it. We would have loved to hang around a bit, but knew we still had some miles ahead of us to get to Albany.

Albany is the capital of New York State (the US has a habit of making smaller, less known cities the state capital, overlooking the more substantial New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Seattle, et al) and home of one of Sandy’s cousins, Carol, and family. Again, the drive upstate away from freeways was quiet and spectacular, and again we were pleased to be welcomed by family. Sandy and Carol caught up, we cooked up feasts, went walking in a national park and apple picking. Maddy and Raffy were reintroduced to some ‘new’ cousins and again hit it off, and again we had to drag them away. This time to Lexington, Massachusetts, near Boston, to stay with Sandy’s uncle Max and aunt Mickey – M & M to those in the know.

(Pic: Apple picking with Carol)

Again, it was great to kick back with family and take stock. Raffy immediately disappeared into Max’s basement workshop and together they built electronic and mechanical devises whose construction and usage remains known only to them (Raff’s ‘Interator©TM‘ contraption is still used in the back of the truck, but we mere grownups still are none the wiser as to its purpose). We went for walks in the woods, played in the yard and generally took over their home, which seemed rather normal since it felt remarkably similar to staying with Sandy’s parents.

(Pic: Max and Raff work on the Interator)

A day spent in Boston took us through stately gardens and boulevards, as well as Boston’s most famous international export – the bar the ‘Cheers!’ sitcom was based on. We giggled at famous ‘Normisms’ (“How’s life treating you Norm?”
”Like it caught me sleeping with its wife.”) and wandered through the Boston Common, the Granary Burying Ground, home to such notables as Samuel Adams and John Hancock, who were among the signatories of the Declaration of Independence, whose names we had come across previously in relation to beer and tall buildings, and Paul Revere. We also visited ‘Bobby’s of Boston’, a very cool vintage clothing emporium.

(Pic: A stranger asked Sandy about her blouse, to which Sandy explained that it once belonged to her grandmother. This required a hug!)

We spent a day on the water with another of Sandy’s cousins, Amy and family in Marblehead. That day proved to be an insufficient catch up as Amy drove to Lexington the next evening to take Sandy out for dinner. We wondered about the connectivity between certain family members that survives years of separation which is nourished by albeit brief encounters and a common ancestry.

SK: This trip was one of the first opportunities I had (we had) to spend one-to-one time with family. Usually when we see each other, there are big family gatherings, which are great, but there is rarely any time to catch up; have conversations with a beginning and an end. It was wonderful to have some time to see my cousins and their families and my uncle and aunt, in their own homes. Now when I think of them, or write to them, I feel a bit more connected. The relationship between relations is peculiar. That we can be so close having only really met a few times, and yet trust in our friendships, commonalities and shared values. 

Saying farewell to M & M was difficult, but again the road beckoned. We now had a significant deadline looming and needed to get a wriggle on. There was a ship with our name on it in Halifax, Canada (well, not our name, but you get my drift) and a flight to Paris that was equally important.

Travelling through Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine, in the north-east corner of the United States provided countless references to the very beginnings of European settlement here. After yet another enthralling drive along the coast we pulled into Belfast, Maine, and camped by Penobscot Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. It was only recently we realised we had again traversed a continent. The climate was sunny and brisk, and the lobster fresh and succulent. A small one was added to our pasta sauce for the evening before we retired to our tent, and we fell asleep to the gentle toll of a bell atop a buoy out in the bay.

Crossing the border from the US for the last time gave us opportunity to reflect on the self-anointed leader of the free world. We had the fortune, or misfortune, of being there during a Presidential election race that seemed to go on forever, and was covered by journalists and pundits with the dedication and unbending focus of a heart surgeon. Yet, for all the media coverage it was extremely difficult to get any real analysis of the issues at hand and the policies proffered by the contenders and challengers. Oh, we heard much about Obama going grey and McCain being old, but not a lot about specific matters of state. We toiled through Sarah Palin’s speech in acceptance for the nomination of Vice President in waiting, and noted in its aftermath that various newspaper, radio and television gas-baggers were more interested in how “sexy” she was rather than her potential capacity to be “Veep”. The difference in the ways in which the Democrats and Republicans would pitch their campaign messages along class lines was startling – McCain’s entreaties to people who comedian Jeff Foxworthy refers to as those with cars on blocks and houses on wheels was somewhat less than discreet.

We were also struck by the palpable desire for average Americans to demand the right to consume in the same way asylum seekers desire human rights. The price of fuel was a national outrage, yet the bulk of heating units in at least the north east of the country burned oil – something most other developed nations gave up long ago – and the cars and trucks aren’t getting much smaller either. Nobody talks about reducing consumption, but it seems everyone talks about increasing production. As one gentleman said, “When gas is costing me almost five bucks a gallon, I say ‘drill, baby, drill’.”

Heroic portions of food – much of which is overly sweet, salty and fat – are also seen as a right, not a privilege, even if you’re into that sort of thing. There was no getting round the fact that so many Americans are huge, pardon the pun. Yes, obesity is prevalent the world over, but nothing like its complete acceptance – perhaps aspiration – of them fellow Americans. Our children mulled over the thought that many elevators would have signs posted noting how many people could legally ride in them, but often there was no way that number of what Bill Hicks referred to as “bovine Americans” would ever get in there. On one occasion in a ‘family restaurant’, that served yellowish meals on plates the size of oven trays, an entire family took one look at the booth to which their waiter (sorry, “host”) had brought them and doubted it would do. The man of the house tried dolefully to slide his ample girth between the bench and table but eventually surrendered, instead asking for a table and chairs. We wondered if a backhoe and block and tackle were also provided.

And what the hell is Ranch dressing anyway? It conjures images of stuff swept up from some Texan cattle yard and bottled.

We also seem to have solved the mystery of why American restaurants refer to main meals as “entrees”. They have “starters”, “entrees” and “desserts”. And there lies the obvious solution. Main meals in the US are simply an invitation to something deep-fried and smothered in chocolate, as the fairy godmother said in Shrek. Forget that it is simply grammatically incorrect and a bastardisation of another culture across the Atlantic who seem to have got the whole culinary consumption deal pretty well worked out, but perhaps cultural appropriation is ‘de rigeur’ in these here parts.

And now that you’ve got me started, it should be shouted from the rooftops that Starbucks should be taken to the international tribunal for crimes against coffee. Their ever-present green hoardings ruin every town and city, and almost every corner and every street. It is possible to pass three or four of them in one street during a fifteen-minute walk. And, it seems, so many Americans reckon it’s pretty good coffee. So, here’s a word to the wise: it’s appalling. The servings are way too large, the combinations way too weak and stale, and usually way too hot. A metaphor for the Republican Party maybe? Never does either the coffee nor the milk have any creamy body to it. And nobody intended for coffee to be flavoured, nor is it cool, hip or groovy to serve coffee in plastic or paper cups while you intend to stay at the café (that goes for the hundreds of others who seem destined to follow in Starshmuck’s festering footsteps). How do we know? Because once or twice we succumbed, in desperation, when looking for some free wifi. And even then they’ve changed the rules in that you now need to have an account with some telco to access it. And each time we entirely regretted it. The Europeans have been doing coffee for donkey’s ears, so perhaps they could learn something from them.

One thing I will miss from north America, though, is turning right through a red light (or, as a conversion, turning left in Australia, the UK, et al). This makes perfect sense and I know I’ll probably unthinkingly try it in Europe or back home and be scolded.

Back to the story…

We crossed the US/Canada border at Calais/St Stephen that was significantly less busy than previous snail-crawls, and while Sandy was dealing with the paperwork, the kids and I were entertained by an elderly Canadian customs agent who wanted to know all about the car, the trip and, most importantly, what it was like to change gears with your left hand instead of your right. Then, back in Canada for the last time, we headed for Saint John, New Brunswick.

Not knowing anything about the place, we were somewhat disappointed. The town was cold, gritty and grey. Even the arty statues of people around the city centre had a dour and resentful look about them.

Rain had settled in during our drive, so we decided to get a room. We checked into a most dishevelled and creaky motel that had stand-alone houses with separate bedrooms and small kitchens that one day may have been sleek and accommodating, but now were in desperate need of new paint, new carpet and straightened floors, or a bulldozer. The owner asked us not to flush toilet paper. What else are you going to do with it? We risked it and made a quick getaway the following morning before the entire system backed up.

After dumping our stuff we headed back into town for something to do and for dinner supplies. Everything seemed to be leaning into the wind. Few people were on the streets; if they were they seemed to be heading with a full head of steam to somewhere where they didn’t have to be heading anywhere anymore. We found a local market and bought a few things. I spotted a seafood stall and, after waiting until the shopkeeper had finished his polite and genteel conversation with a local, I enquired about some of the fabled local oysters. The price was reasonable, and I asked for them to be opened for me. “I don’t shuck,” was the reply. “Then how do I eat them?” I asked, knowing full well that with rudimentary implements in the truck and at the motel I was liable to sever an artery, to which he replied, “I don’t shuck.” The oysters stayed in the display cabinet.

Dinner was quick and hearty, and Sandy and I watched another episode of West Wing before bed. We still hadn’t booked any accommodation in Halifax, our next and last stop, as everything on line seemed ludicrously expensive. Maddy decided that she needed to help out and, sourcing a free wifi connection that only worked in the car-park, she started searching and researching options on the computer. It made my heart melt.

(Pic: Maddy searches on-line for accommodation)

The next drive would be our last in North America. We all had become progressively anxious about the significance of yet another milestone. We had traversed another continent and were about to come to our last stop before loading the truck up into a container and pointing it in the direction of Europe.

More references to Eng-a-land: Hampton, Sussex and Salisbury flew past. So, too, did Oxford and Bedford, before gliding into wonderful Halifax. Rolling hills, vistas of the Atlantic, fishing villages and ye olde stately homes.

We had attempted to book accommodation in Halifax for a few days and failed miserably. It seemed that everything within our budget and with a kitchen was booked solid. We weren’t able to camp as this was the end of the line for now. We needed a place where we could clean and pack the truck for its journey to London, and anyway, it was getting colder and windier.

As we entered Halifax we followed signs to the local information bureau, which happened to be located on the ground floor of the hotel we would end up in. We had seen this hotel on our internet searches but weren’t able to get a decent room on-line. I parked on the footpath, as one does with a dirty big truck covered in international stickers and gunk, and Sandy and Maddy went in to the bureau to find out options.

Sandy soon had two workers feverishly pounding phone numbers in search of a room, while Raffy and I made sure we didn’t get booked or towed. Then, as it turned out, the hotel above had a great room available. Only trouble was that the rate quoted was more expensive than the on-line version we had found earlier. So, the wonderful hotel staff simply pointed Sandy to the complimentary computer in the foyer, where she looked up the good deal, book it and then sauntered back up to reception to claim it. Done deal.

Parking was another issue. It had been an issue quite often on this trip, as, given our truck was reasonably tall and had an additional pack on the roof, most under-cover car parks wouldn’t suit. ‘Trucky’ is 6ft 10in high in the old money, or 210cm (don’t get me started why Canada uses metric for everything except for height). This car park quoted 6ft 9in. So, we thought we’d give it a go. It was either that or try to find an outdoor car-park that was less secure or dry.

Sandy and I unloaded the gear from the roof-rack onto the footpath while Maddy and Raffy brought a hotel trolley round to collect it all. Then, once the gear was comfortably ensconced in our room, I drove the truck towards the car park entrance.

Of course, the driveway was not level, so I had to pick the lowest point, which was hard against the left hand wall. Sandy got out and watched the roof while I manoeuvred and spun the steering wheel. After scraping the top of the garage door and slightly lifting the sign that denoted how high the clearance was with the now empty roof-rack, and sliding delicately under the various pipes and power conduits bolted to the ceiling of the car park, we squeezed the truck into place. Mission accomplished.

We had one full day in Halifax to explore and spent our time along the water front and in town. A strange anomaly became apparent: it seems that in some parts of north America one cannot take children into a licensed premises without ordering food. It turns out that, even though a number of pubs with ‘ye olde English’ motifs abound, Sandy and I could easily enter and order an adult beverage without fuss, but because we had two littler people with us, we had to order meals. Full meals, not snacks. And one for each person. Why? Nobody knew whether it was a state or federal law, or just the whimsy of the venue’s owner, as one waiter claimed. Weird. We spent the afternoon with Trucky at a local carwash, trying to get five months’ worth of dirt, grime and splattered insects off it in an attempt to get though British customs.

Our final day in north America was spent packing the truck (with all the above-roof gear into the back seat) and getting it to the shipping company’s warehouse. Easier said than done, as you would have guessed by now.

The plan was that, given the back seats of the truck were now again packed to the gills with camping gear, we had to divide and conquer. We booked a taxi, which was loaded with Sandy and Raffy, while Maddy and I followed in the truck. Easy. No drama. Be there in a flash. No wuckas.

Not.

The cab driver, it turns out, had been shoving taxis around Halifax and sister city Dartmouth for over fifteen years, yet had never been to the neck of the woods we required. And, as if we needed more surprises, he didn’t have a street directory. What he did have was a book that gave literary descriptions of where he might need to go, like “travel along road X, turn right at street Y” etc. But, naturally, his list didn’t provide accurate directions to the shipping company.

So, we spent the next half an hour stopping, the taxi driver calling the shipping company for directions, doing u-turns, repeat. An hour and a half later, we finally rolled into the grounds of the shipping company.

(Pic: Danny slides the truck into shipping container bound for London)

Like all depots of this nature, it was grimy, dishevelled and a hive of activity. After sorting out some paperwork I drove the truck into a warehouse and was directed into a shipping container. The ramp wasn’t wide enough, so another was put in place. And then, quite simply, I plodded the truck in on idle, locked it, and bade it farewell.

Our cab driver was so apologetic for getting us lost that he hung around until we were done – which was a good thing given that we were so far away from town. He dropped us back at our hotel, and we then spent the afternoon taking it easy, packing our remaining gear and heading for the airport.

I was immediately pining for our independence. Without our own transport we depended on others. Cabs, shuttles, planes. Sandy had booked the airport shuttle (the “Airporter” – hah!) and we loaded up, only to pull in to every hotel on the way in. I cursed them horribly. I was so unused to having to – god forbid – accommodate other people, that they all annoyed the hell out of me. The bus driver was a novice and was being coached by a senior. She, the driver, was fine. He, the teacher, insisted on whistling bad 1980s pop songs the entire time. The band Loverboy was bad enough in their heyday – being whistled by a fifty-something Canadian made it a whole lot worse. (“You wanna piece of my heart…?”)

We finally made it to the airport and checked in our luggage. We mooched around the duty free, only to buy bubble-gum for the kids to ostensibly “get over their ear-aches” on take-off and landing, and suddenly we were in the air. That was it. Goodbye America, farewell Canada. Europe, here we come.

(Pic: Farewell north America…)

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8 Comments»

  Josh Maxwell wrote @

Well said Great information, keep up the great work!

  Miss Andrea wrote @

Hello Ois & Ois & co.,
Enjoying the pics as well as the words. And the Normisms too. You’ve reinforced all my prejudices with your rants about US politics, coffee and portion size… but a pleasure to see that it’s in the US that rozzers will take your photo with a smile, or hug you for your special blouse.
Travel safely over the Atlantic
xxxx
p/s: what’s with the face fuzz, eh??

  David Taylor wrote @

Hi Guys, finally got round to reading your latest blog. Great as always. I’m glad I read it this morning, cause I’ve just arrived home from the City. A friend & I went to the Gallery, & saw the Art Deco exhibition. (Last day) Far too many vile people. Great to see, as I’d been reading your N.Y stuff, & Manhattan experiences. Melb Storm & Manly Sea Eagles is about to start. Yeh, getting it direct. It’s 5pm Daylight savings time. GO GO GO STORM. Hope you had a great N.Y. Photo’s are great. Love the hug one. How good was that!
No news, Keep safe & happy,
Luv & Peace, David.

  John Petersen wrote @

Well, well, bloody well!!

Put the family “T” shirt on this morning and though, “I wonder where they are and what they are up to”. Got on the web and there you, all, are, winging your way to the EU! But what a great yarn on the way round Nth America.

I’m impressed with your knowledge of music, particularly the jazz stuff. As for the Starbucks thingy, I’ve seen it once in Sydney some years ago and more recently in HK. Don’t understand how a country with so many Europeans just can’t seem to get the idea about good coffee, but there must be some Italian coffee shops some where there?

I’m sure you will have heard the footy scores, so I won’t upset you with those, other than to say I was pleased to see Hawks have win. I noted that one of your ‘reads’ mentioned the Manly v Storm game today….don’t bother to watch it ; Manly 40; Storm 0.

I enjoyed your ‘jottings’ , both, and Love to you both. JP/PP

  David Ellis wrote @

I also heard the coodabeens interview and it was lovely to hear your happy voice. it sounds like a delightful time. Hope England etc is as great for you as it was for us when we walked across on the Coast to coast….beautiful way to see a country.
Your boss will be very interested to hear that half way thru you are expecting to be a month late….by the end of the trip you will probably be 2 years late!
However long it takes, have a brilliant time.
By the way we have just started delivering training to 3500 people on family violence risk assessment framework with NTV and DVRC!!!! Partly thanks to your great work before you went. Good to know the good work is still going while you are off fart arsing around the world in your red truck!
enjoy
cheers david

  Allie Bailey wrote @

Hola! finally found your blog, after tracking down my DVRC mail…. how ace to read your travels… Danny looking very Into The Wild Canadian, very Iron n Wine. Im filled with travel envy, but so happy you’re all having such a good time… hope to catch up with Danny this week – i think all those miles deserve a beer.

Will stay in touch now, this is great reading – what an amazing adventure…. thanks also for the soundtracks, spot on funksters.

Allie n Otis xxx

  Hilary wrote @

having checked for more blog several times a week during your quiet patch, suddenly there’s a flood to catch up on. i identified with your driving in manhattan (remember manhattan?) thinking: is this really us? here? now?
i have a more personal letter simmering and percolating through the brain, surely to emerge soon, albeit sieved by the guilt of delay.
h

  Shannon wrote @

Sorry to hear you didn’t get much time to explore Nova Scotia. It’s a really beautiful province. I think the reason you can’t bring children into a restaurant if you’re just ordering an alcoholic beverage is because well it makes it more like a bar/pub. However, if you order food then they’re able to get away with saying you’re in the “restaurant” area of the pub.


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