Day 0: Leaving Marblehead

“I love it when a plan comes together.”
- Colonel John “Hannibal” Smith (as portrayed by George Peppard)

Somehow it all came together. The boys were already booked for two weeks of sleep-away camp in New Hampshire when Lyn got the call for a business trip to London. For the cost of one additional steerage ticket we could turn this business trip into our first kid-free vacation since 1996. The plan is to spend two days in Paris and the rest of the week in London.

I figured that I’d try to document our trip through photos and words, assuming that they have the internet in Europe. As you’ll learn over the coming week, I know a LOT about the UK & France, having been to London for one day in 1987.

Today is my last day in Marblehead. On the agenda: a nice walk to the ocean, one final lobster roll, a little packing, and a quick 9 holes at Olde Salem Greens.

A Beautiful Day in Marblehead

This is what it looks like when you’re out on Marblehead Neck.

A view from Chandler Hovey Park

A view from Chandler Hovey Park

This is what it looks like when you’re a wharf rat. You’ll note that it’s much darker on this side of the harbor. That’s because I took this picture last night, Sherlock. (Sherlock Holmes was a famous British fictional detective who was most definitely not a wharf rat.)

A view from Crocker Park

A view from Crocker Park

Lobster Roll at the Muffin Shop

This is the Muffin Shop on Washington Street. People say their muffins are excellent. I’ve never had any because the early bird gets the muffin and I like to sleep late.

The Muffin Shop

The Muffin Shop

I figured that I’d get a lobster roll because they don’t have lobster rolls in London. You see, when Christopher Columbus first landed in America 16 of his crew were killed by wild lobsters (they hadn’t invented claw rubber bands yet) and now all of Europe is deathly afraid of lobsters. Also, you’ll see that I got some free “chips” with my roll. Now, in London, if you order “chips” you get “fries”. If you order “fries” you probably get old shoe leather or something. I don’t really know, but I do know that British people are terrible at cooking. These are the type of interesting historical and cultural facts that I hope to share throughout our journey.

Lobster Roll

Lobster Roll

Packing List

It’s important to park smartly before heading to Europe because if you forget anything you have to buy it over there and things are expensive and they have weird money and stuff. Plus, they’re always on vacation or strike or something in France. Here’s what I’m bringing:

  • 8 speedos
  • dress & casual crocs
  • fanny pack(s)
  • pants with removable legs
  • Spinal Tap, Season 4 of “Lovejoy”
  • football kit with kicks and scarves (London)
  • striped shirt, beret, baguette, bicycle, mime (Paris)
  • tie-dye tank top

Golf at Olde Salem Greens

It was a beautiful day for a little golf and today’s round did not disappoint. I played with <name redacted> and the match came down to the last putt. Sure, I lost by one stroke, but it was a perfect day nonetheless. When I was a kid I used to ask my Popper “who won?” when he’d come back from golf. He’d always respond, “oh, we don’t keep score.” Now, years later, I understand what he meant. The score is incidental when it comes to golf with friends. Here’s the ninth tee at Olde Salem Greens:

Ninth tee at Olde Salem Greens

Ninth tee at Olde Salem Greens

Tomorrow I have an early flight to London. I’m hoping to land in time to catch Marc Ford (former Black Crowes guitarist) at the Borderline in London. I already bought a ticket to the show but I may have miscalculated what time I’m arriving due to their stupid metric system. How was I supposed to know what time 19:35 is in England? Isn’t that Greenwich Mean Time anyway? Stupid Brits.

See you on the other side.

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