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Thank YOU

We have made many friends across Europe, and we have been supported to no end by our friends in the States and around the world.

You, our readers, donated over $1,400 to making this dream a reality. This generosity gave us a chance to leave our camping life for a short time and enjoy the local food and drink, see some amazing shows and most of all, keep our bus on the road when things got rough. We keep this in the forefront of our memory as much as any portion of our year abroad.

THANK YOU!!

Dublin- The Last Guinness

We had a stopover in Dublin on the way from Amsterdam to New York. The tickets said that we had a full hour between flights, but we ended up at the gate just as they began boarding.

Kim looked so disappointed that we weren’t going to get one last pint of Guinness in Dublin (to match the first pints we had in the very same airport almost one year ago). We were in line for a minute and when the line didn’t move at all, we simply bolted for the airport pub.

So it wasn’t a country Guinness, or even a creamy pint from Temple Bar, but it was a final toast to making it. We smiled and sipped our pints, clinking glasses between each sip.

We did it. Now here comes America.

One last 'slainte

One last 'Slainte'!

Just as exciting as the very first Guinness

Just as exciting as the very first Guinness

Mmmmmm

Mmmmmm

Adios in Amsterdam

We arrived in Amsterdam for our final 2 days on the European continent. We had begun mainland Europe with a weekend in Amsterdam, and it seemed a fitting goodbye as well.

Kim and I talked about the possibilities back at home, but mostly we concentrated on ‘the now’ and enjoyed Amsterdam to the fullest. We have made a habit of living in the now in the past year, and it is something that I find wholly liberating. It is my ultimate souvenir from this trip.

In a final backpacker twist, 4 English guys showed up in our hostel room for our final night. They had spent the previous night sleeping in the park because of a mistake in reservations, and they all looked wrecked.

That night, I was kept awake by the most persistent mosquito ever, or so I thought. The truth is that these 4 gents had brought fleas with them from the park, and both Kim and myself were covered in bites the next morning. We both got it bad, but Kim’s arm had about 100 bites on it. We found ourselves itching our way towards New York City. Dude.

Cheers to neverending challenges!

JD

Sweet sculpture... Sweet capture of this group's creative candid!

Sweet sculpture... & Sweet capture of this group's creative candid!

It's good to be back

It's good to be back

Oh yeah... pancakes!

Oh yeah... pancakes!

My wife can't help being a goofball...

My wife can't help being a goofball...

Look what kind of stuff you find if you just keep walking

Look what kind of stuff you find if you just keep walking

Never a dull moment in this city!

Never a dull moment in this city!

It might have its crowded areas, but Amsterdam can still be so peaceful

It might have its crowded areas, but Amsterdam can still be so peaceful

Cheers to us!

Cheers to us!

Stockholm- Vasa Museum

Of all the museums that we saw this past year, the Vasa Museum in Stockholm may qualify as “most engaging”.

The Vasa is a ship commissioned for the Swedish Navy in 1633. On it’s maiden voyage, it sank about 200 meters into Stockholm harbor.

The ship sat at the bottom of the harbor for over 300 years before being recovered. The fully restored ship is now the gigantic centerpiece of the Vasa Museum- a place devoted to her memory.

The stories from the Vasa, as well as other ships from her time period, are something from a nautical nightmare, and you can’t help but be enthralled by the amount of artifacts they have recovered with the ship.

Vasa Museum=Must see in Stockholm.

A SHOUT-OUT to Werner for pointing us to one of the highlights of our Stockholm visit.

Cheers,

JD

Whoa- that thing is MASSIVE!

Whoa- that boat is MASSIVE!

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I was enamored with the detailed woodworking

artifacts

Beautiful artifacts, dredged up from the sea floor

Kinda reminds you of a pirate ship, eh?

Kinda reminds you of a pirate ship, eh?

Fancy captains' quarters

Fancy captains' quarters

The compartment for riflemen... never used

The compartment for riflemen... never used

One reason for the ship's sinking... the lower level of cannon openings was too close to the water!

One reason for the ship's sinking... the lower level of cannon openings was too close to the water!

The construction of such a huge structure is remarkable

The crew used to sleep on the bare wood floor in ships like these

Tall and narrow- another unfortunately disastrous fault

Tall and narrow- another unfortunately disastrous fault of the Vasa

Thanks to modern technology, we got to enjoy this masterpiece close up!

Thanks to modern technology, we got to enjoy this masterpiece close up!

Archipelago Boat Trip

No trip to Stockholm is complete without a boat tour of the surrounding islands – the Archipelago.  Our day trip took us to Sandhamn, a sort of Hamptons-esqe place with a rustic, log cabin twist.  The food was fabulous, the weather was outstanding and our seaside nap among the rocks was so refreshing.  All in all, it was a breathtaking day among the Archipelago.

A lazy day out on the calm, blue water

A lazy day out on the calm, blue water

First thing's first!

First thing's first!

The gals enjoy the Sandhamn Värdshus

Finding our spot on the rocks

Finding our spot on the rocks

Time for a quick pose as we search :)

Time for a quick pose as we search :)

Perfect Scandinavian day

Perfect Scandinavian summer day

Our impression of a few collagen injected ladies on the island - no we didn't!

Our impression of a few collagen injected ladies on the island - oh no we didn't!

Back on the boat

Back on the boat - Sandhamn from a distance

Returning to Stockholm as the sun sets

Returning to Stockholm as the sun sets

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