After the Tour
"Where are you from, sir?" The immigration officer stared at me, waiting for an answer. But the question nagged me. Perhaps I'm more "from" Europe than I was when I started my trip, three weeks ago. Perhaps I have more insight into what makes Europe tick. Perhaps my perspectives have shifted enough that I might claim I'm from a larger part of the world than before. Perhaps I was just really tired from my 8 hour plane flight and my brain was not working right.
"You mean, where was I born?" He nodded. "Massachusetts." He stamped my passport and let me by. Welcome back. Above me drifted a big Welcome to the United States of America sign as I stepped into the New World.
And so ends our tour of Europe. Did you enjoy following our footsteps? If you did, I must tell you that it was much more fun being there, and strongly suggest you try it too if you haven't already. Those things that I could not capture in the two dimensions of a web page; the simple air that you breath when the sun sets, the history that you learn from the greatest teachers, the feelings that you feel when you wake up or go to sleep in these places, and the 26 unique personalities that you are honored to be with; are what make the trip so special.
I tried to give you my memories as best I could with this set of web pages. I spent my evenings for 3 weeks after the trip learning HTML and Microsoft FrontPage, and composing the pictures that I took with the ink I laid down in my journal. I also used Adobe Photoshop to clean up my pictures, Ulead MediaStudio Pro to make the video and audio clips, and Adobe After Effects to make the "big" video.
For those wondering what it takes to put together a web site like this one, I offer the following statistics:
Digital Camera stats:
Web Site stats:
You may have noticed some pictures that look like they were taken with a really wide angle lens (like this one). These, in fact, were taken with a normal lens but are multiple images stitched together with special software, thereby creating a wider field of view than any compact camera can take. This is another advantage of using digital cameras, which are often designed to easily take these types of pictures.
Most of the photos you see here are not local to this web site, but rather are stored in a photo server at FotoTime.com. I have 175 megabytes of photos stored there. It costs $24 per year for their service (and was actually free until recently), and so far I haven't had any problems with them. Check them out if you're looking for a place to put your digital photos.
One more thing. If you want to go on a trip similar to mine, please have a look at Rick Steves' Best of Village Europe tour. The Best of Europe II tour no longer exists, and has been replaced by this tour. Overall, the new tour substitutes some of the bigger cities that we visited with more down-to-earth places, and reduces the total length of bus driving. The one place I might miss the most that is not included anymore is the visit to the Dolomites.
Thanks for visiting. I hope you liked my web site, and I wish you well on all your future journeys.
Till next time,
Au Revoir, Auf Wiedersehen, Arrivederci, and Adios!
If you'd like to see a portion of the video I made for my last tour, click on the projector and wait for it to download (28.8 modem will take almost an hour - sorry).
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Unless otherwise noted all text and images are copyright Robert Williams.
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Last updated 11/12/2005 . Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.