Cut to December 2011.
It’s the middle of December, winter is settling in, and it’s a perfect time for a road trip. The book I had been writing and working on for the previous two years was finally finished and off at the printer. While we waited for the shipment of books to arrive, my daughter, Bridget, and I were packing up Dexy – my trusted car – our mule for the next 11 months. We’re off!
We’re heading south – destination: Key West. Soak up some sun before catching a plane to Dublin, for a month in Northern Ireland and Ireland that includes two Van Morrison concerts, one in Belfast and one in Dublin. The trip to Ireland is actually for research for my next book; the Van shows are simply a huge bonus, not to mention a great opportunity to sell copies of my hot-off-the-press “Astral Weeks Live: A Fan’s Notes.”
We get back from Ireland in February and make a beeline for New Orleans in time for Mardi Gras. Then it’s on to Austin for SXSW in March; and California, here we come, for the month of April. By June we’ll be back in New Hampshire for Porcfest – the Free State Project’s weeklong freedom festival – rated #1 best festival by The Last Word. Then it’s up to Canada, arriving in New Brunswick and meandering our way west to Calgary in time for my niece’s wedding at the end of August. Then we’re off to explore the Pacific Northwest and all its beauty, hugging the coast all the way down into Northern California – San Francisco and Santa Cruz. And then we head home, before the snow falls in New England.
Eleven months on the road, and when we’re not beetling it down the highway, we’re getting off the interstates into the nooks and crannies, soaking it all up, learning a lot, taking lots of pictures, and seeing where it all takes us.
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