Some people are just in the right place, at the right time, with the right attitude toward something new. I am one of those people. By chance, I met Adam Sandler and Tom Waits in Ireland, Jason Bay in Boston, Flogging Molly in New Brunswick, the Pope in Italy, and the Queen in England. Just last week, I was scheduled for a tour over LA by helicopter. When we arrived, we were escorted to an airplane, which seemed equally as adventurous so we never complained and stepped on board. After our flight, we learned that the company had made a simple mistake and they offered our original helicopter tour at no extra charge. We were able to fly over the beach cities by plane and downtown LA by helicopter all in the same day. Because I travel so freely and rarely have set plans, it leaves a window of opportunity. It was this free-spirited, open-ended travel that led me to a strange animal encounter in the Florida Keys. Continue reading
Someone recently asked me about Boston, MA. What is there to do there? Is it a good city to visit? When visiting Boston two years ago, I discovered that it houses neighborhoods with distinct character, historic shipyards, top educational institutes, the beloved Red Sox, and big-city entertainment. With history and culture around every bend, skyscrapers nestled next to historic hotels, and modern marketplaces lining antique cobblestone streets, Boston is a vibrant, thriving city with adventures for all ages. Unfortunately, I can’t address many of those beautiful sights or locations around Boston because I found McGreevy’s Pub, home of the Dropkick Murphys and all that quaint historic, cultural stuff was replaced by an excessively drunken day and night in the heart of Boston. At only 1200 steps from Fenway Park and the Boston House of Blues, McGreevy’s 3rd Base Saloon is a traditional Irish Pub dedicated to Boston sports, Boston history, and great Boston music. It’s known as America’s first sports bar, winner of Boston’s best sport bar many times over, home of the Dropkick Murphys, and the best bar in Boston to kick back and enjoy a pint. Continue reading
I thought about what we could do for our last day in Ireland after three weeks of non stop drinking, traveling, sleeping in tents and cars, and about 3 hours of rest a night. The best I could come up with was the movies. We hadn’t done anything with a hint of normalcy during the entire trip. A day at the movies was just want we needed, but we ended up getting a lot more than we paid for.
I was going to change from the clothes that I wore the day before, but I no longer saw the point. Everything that I had with me was equally dirty, worn, and nasty. We were very familiar with being in dirty clothes. As we walked down the street, I noticed several other people that looked like they were wearing bar clothes. I assumed that they were doing the walk of shame that occurs after hooking-up at the bar the night before. Their presence made me feel better about myself. Continue reading
There may be as many as 300,000 child soldiers, hopped-up on drugs and wielding AK-47s, in more than fifty conflicts around the world. Ishmael Beah, author of A LONG WAY GONE, used to be one of them. As a member of the Human Rights Watch Children Advisory Committee, he spoke to teachers and students at Hampton High School in Hampton, New Brunswick. It was here that I first heard Beah speak about his horrific, terror-filled childhood. He lived with his family in Sierra Leone until 1991, when rebels attacked and violently destroyed his village. They raped women and girls in front of their husbands, fathers, and brothers, took young girls as sex slaves, and killed the rest of their families. When most 12-year-olds were enjoying the innocence of childhood, including me, Beah was struggling to stay alive. I thank Beah for pouring out his soul to the audience. It is proof of Beah’s theory that “…children have the resilience to outlive their sufferings, if given a chance”. Continue reading