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Sights and sounds from the road by travel Experts Judith Fein and Paul Ross – Life Is A Trip

| October 19, 2011

Judith Fine and Paul Ross do a lot more than write great travel articles and take world class photographs that capture the spirit of remarkable destinations, they belong to a special breed of adventures who forge paths that others of us can follow not only to explore new geography but to uncover new experiences – eye and heart opening experiences – experiences that help us to understand other cultures, to connect with other people and learn more about this remarkable and extraordinary earth that we are privileged to call home. In keeping with the mission of AgeNation, Judith and Paul will soon be announcing some remarkable journeys for AgeNation Community members.

It’s everywhere, all the time, always around us. It’s there when we wake up in the morning, get the paper, open the blinds, heat water, walk, go online, work, meet, eat, greet and sleep.

It’s the particular sounds you hear and don’t hear, listen to and try to ignore.

In Scotland, there were the sounds of the wind and rain that lashed our hair and faces on the dramatic isle of Skye and the haunting tenor and bass drones of a lone bagpipe player who piped for tourists in Edinburgh. We stood still in the middle of a busy street, overcome by sadness, pride, and a host of emotions that had no name.

In central Portugal, we walked with a chorus of men who played the tinny, clanging chocalhos–sheep bells that were strung over their bodies from shoulder to hip like a sash.

In the historic village of Monsanto, a warm, open-hearted woman played the adufe, a square tamborine that reportedly goes back to Biblical times and was once played by Miriam, the sister of Moses. In the Beiras and Barraida regions, it was the swishing of wine in the mouths of wine experts, and the spitting of red and white wines that were pronounced as fine, fruity, balanced, leggy and tannic.

In Norway, there was the sharp ping and crack our ice-cube glass made when it slipped out of our hands in an ice bar and splattered on the icy floor.

And the pelting rain that bounced off the ground as we ran for the shelter of a gourmet restaurant in Stavanger, which has been made rich by oil money.

In Vienna, we sat in what may have been the summer residence of Beethoven, looking out the window at the thin blossoms on the trees and, through headphones, listening to the swelling outpouring of the musical genius.

On a Uniworld boat that sailed on the Danube through Eastern Europe, we listened to presentations about the terrible war in the former Yugoslavia, told from different sides.

The passengers sighed, huffed, whispered, groaned or held their breath, depending upon how they received the information, and what they thought about it.

In Vienna, there was the creaking of the wooden floor where Sigmund Freud received patients like the famed Wolf Man, as he puffed the pipe and cigars that would kill him and analyzed the seen and unseen forces that wrestle and grapple in  the human mind.

On the Journey Through Hallowed Ground in Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, we listened to the recreated sounds of cannons that exploded on battlefields where more than half a million humans sacrificed their lives on both sides of the slavery and secession issues.

And, at home, at night, under the covers, when the lights were out, our own giggles about silly things that happened, and our joy at being alive.

May the sounds of life awaken you to the thrill of existence everywhere you go, and remind you of how lucky we are to have been chosen to live. May there be love and laughter in you and around you, and may each year bring more sounds, more variety, more depth and more passion to your inner and outer world.

Happy year end.

Judie + Paul

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Category: Travel

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