Baby We Were Born to Run

The eagle has landed at JFK were I picked up the hire car and my fears were proved founded, check it out, remember im delirious from a long plane flight

So I hit the road, trying to make it out of NY and into somewhere with.. less traffic atleast. I headed toward this place called "Allentown" on the map but found somewhere better just before… "bethlehem". are you kidding me? well atleast they didnt call it "new bethlehem", thats over stating your status a bit too much. I found a reasonable hotel and bunked down for my first night on US soil.

In the morning I kind of wondered north west a bit, no real destination in mind, anything small town america, thats what I was really looking for.  I have also come to love the GPS unit. I couldnt do without it, no way, this country is huge and signpostings are cryptic at best and this thing knows EVERYTHING. It found me the hotel in bethlehem even. About the only annoying thing is the one generic womans voice it uses, I think Mr T would should much better

"Up here, fiddy feet on the right, take the off ramp fool"

"hmm what ramp??"

"ON THE RIGHT SUCKA, THE RIGHT, TAKE THE RAMP FOOL"

The only downside to the Mr T GPS is that it would take you everywhere except the airport. "If I aint getting on no plane, you aint getting on no plane sucka. Now, where the milk for the children?"

Ok so how can I go wrong. I was somewhere in buttfuck pennsylvania when i looked over my map… hey theres a place up north called Niagara… its Niagara Falls!!! You know it!!

10 seconds later the GPS had been programmed for upstate New York and the Canadian border

"Your trip will take 4 hours and 5 minutes fool"

"Like hell it will" and the Saturn took off up the road.

so im cruising down the highway, badass style and who should stop me… The Man.. well actually the Woman.

The New York State troopers had got me speeding. I didnt actually feel bad because I knew whatever happens, it was going to be a good story. The nice lady gets out and comes up to the window

"Do you know you were doing 80 in a 65 zone?"

"80? oh like miles? oh no I didnt I am sorry officer, I get ever so confused with these miles things, ive only been here two days. Did I mention I am an Australian??"

She takes my details and comes back in a few minutes… AND I GET LET OFF!!! Take that Swedish coppers! Either she was feeling nice or booking a foreigner in a rental car was too much effort for her, so it was time to hit the road again.

So i made it to Niagara falls and its awesome, its off season with lots of cheap rooms so I stayed the night and watched the sunset and then sunrise this morning. You can see Canada too, its right across the water.

So now its time to leave Niagara and head down to Pittaburgh. Mr T says its going to take 3 or so hours. I should stay under the limit atleast until Im back in pennsylvania, they dont know me there yet.

AMERICAN! FUCK YEAH!

Pass The Dutchie On The Left Hand Side…

Todays 4 hour stop over in Amsterdam is brought to you by these two great exports from dutchland

The second not really being an "export" technically but hester sure does try.

And what do you get when you combine the two (beside laughing uncontrollably at the name "cockpit")?

After having some of Amsterdam’s finest I am led to believe that you find yourself standing in the middle of the runway where the planes suddenly develop big smiley faces and welcome you to "the friendly skies". At the same time ground staff stand around scratching their heads as to how seemingly normal aircraft have suddenly developed personalities and wonder if they will ever take off with all that damn chit chat! And when did the french start getting high anyway? Now the plane is demanding a tanker of Bordeaux’s finest instead. Damn the french, damn them and their talking planes.

Now pass me another cookie please.

Most Experienced Traveller EVER

Hi, my name is Louis and I have travelled all over the world, handled myself in all kinds of situations and I am an organised and independant traveller. Ha, theres nothing I cant handle. Look at me and how great I am.

yeah yeah nah nah yeah yeah the flight is in the afternoon sometime, around 18 i believe.

09:45: Louis awakes, takes coffee, makes eggs. Listens to Team American soundtrack and yells "FUCK YEAH" while drinking his coffee. He is pumped.

11:50: Louis is almost packed and is writing down all the relevant details and numbers, goes to check the flight number and exact time of the flight.

FLIGHT          FROM                TO                          DEPARTURE ARRIVAL
------------ ---------------- --------------------- --------- -------
SAS - SK903
Sun 28 Oct Stockholm SE Newark US 10:40 14:35
Arlanda Newark International

Blink. Blink. More coffee please!

In a life defined by stupidity, this one ranks up there alright.

11:55: After eating straight from the Milo tin in search of some comfort food Louis called SAS, as it turns out the act of missing the first flight also cancels the second flight, thats your 5000sek down the drain big boy.

12:04: Louis has, by stroke of luck, found a KLM flight leaving 6am tomorrow morning, going through Amsterdam and then onto JFK. All this for only 3000sek. Not bad. Maybe some hash cookies will make him feel better.

12:05: Car gets rebooked through Budget out of JFK. Car now has GPS which makes Louis relieved although is $50 more expensive. Something gives him the idea this will be an expensive trip. God bless you grandma.

12:07: The mocca pot finishes and a fresh coffee awaits him as he now has 18 hours to think about what a dumb ass he really is. Long live America.

USA USA USA

The writings are cultural learnings are slow to come, am I having a crisis of faith? have I discovered drugs? yes. and that drug is called "darkness" and I am addicted to it 12 hours a day here and by "addicated" I mean "subjected without end". Thats todays english call finished with.

Blogging in Sweden isnt too much fun well because… there isnt too much to blog about, yes sure there are some cultural learnings to be made, dont think Ive lost my love for cheap and shallow stereotypes, oh no thats as strong as ever, its just living each day is well.. living. I go to work, hide under the desk for atleast 5 hours avoiding my workmates, spend another 2 just randomly walking around the building looking busy. Its awesome, I am split between two departments so if you LOOK busy, 1 group assumes you are busy for the other group and noone is the wiser. Except all those others who hang around the coffee machine, we all share a dark secret.

Anyway, life is life is sweden is life is just the same anywhere really, where was I.. oh yes going to work, coming home, having dinner, sleeping, getting up going to work, having a drink on friday night and getting to bed before middnight because you are all hard working and mature now. Thats lifes road, dont forget that kids.

shit, ive been listening to A LOT of Stephen Colbert lately and now I sound like him. Or atleast in my mind I sound like him. To everyone else I sound more like Steve Vizard impersonating Derryn Hinch on Fast Forward. Complete with beard and short sentences. Yes. Salman Rushdie I am not. How can you be a "sir" and have the name of a fish? A fatwa on you! Now where was I….

Anyway, the next two weeks Im off to… USA USA USA!! I cant just say it once, I have to write it three times and then grunt it out like the high school quarterback, see I have been doing my research for this trip like I do for anywhere else, by studying the most stupid stereotypes I can from that culture and then mercilessly mocking them with things that probably arnt even true. USA USA USA. If you put those together you get US-AUS-AUS-A. Think about it folks.

Im going to american because this bloke whom you may remember, is getting married!

Mr D Quinn, formerly of Salamder Bay, formerly of Parry Street Newcastle, formerly of Vaasa Finland is getting married to a lovely American girl called Carisa. Cast your minds back to over a year ago when the white Volvo had made it to Krakow in Poland. Adam and Dieter were chilling in Nathans hostel, I had just flown in from Sweden and we were heading south to Austria. Then Dieter met Carisa and ran off with her. It took 4 other people to replace him you know, thats how much of a guy he is.

And its a Eurotrip reunion again! Adam and Mandy are coming, as is a newly married James, its going to be happy happy days, the service is happening in Pittsburgh and I am flying Stockholm to NY on sunday. After that i COULD have flown to Pittsburgh but thats for wimps, instead its time for a 2 day.. ALL AMERICAN ROAD TRIP. Thast right, Im going to have a cowboy hat and the entire Bon Jovi and Bruce Springsteen back catalouges. Im going to be a rebel, a bad ass, living by my whits, not letting the man get me down, not letting them take my gun until its prised from my cold dead hand. Oh shit theres almost too many stereotypes to go through, I barely know where to start. Ill be like Thelma and Louise except with a Y chromosome.

I have rented a car through "Budget" and you dont get to know the specific car type until the day. I booked something a bit bigger, something with room, hopefully something with a decent engine. Its going to be a bad ass american machine. See in my mind, Im going to get this

When really, Im going to get this.

Wood paneling, the best addition to a car the world has ever known.

Its all happening this sunday.   Wait, its only 8 hours on a plane and not say.. the 24 back to Australia? AWESOME. Rubber Ducky thats a big over and out.