European Vacation

Cool gig of the year for Yacht Rock: we were invited to play a birthday party for about a hundred people at a house (manor?) in Windsor, GB, just outside of London. Built into that was a couple of days to overcome the jet lag/hang out in London. Vacation time! I was able to bring my family to experience the trip.

Wednesday: we took an evening flight directly from Atlanta to Heathrow. No changing planes (some of the guys took a flight that had a connection in JFK and were delayed for hours).


I watched two movies: The Post and Hostiles. Both were excellent.


Thursday: We landed in England on an hour or two of sleep, took an expensive cab ride to our hotel, and then headed off exploring.

the British Museum

the Rosetta Stone

Piccadilly Circus

Buckingham Palace

Thursday evening, the entire band took a field trip to Royal Albert Hall for a special concert--the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra and the English Chamber Choir performed the score to Close Encounters of the Third Kind as the movie played on the big screen. The room was breathtaking. The sound was beautiful. While watching the movie, it was easy to forget that the orchestra was performing as well--everything was completely balanced and in sync.


We walked to the train station after the concert.

Harrod's is just down the street

Friday: Another band field trip--the London Eye!



From there, we headed across the river to Westminster.


After lunch in a pub, we made our way along the river (via the Underground) to Tower Hill.

Tower of London



From there, we crossed the river, via the Tower Bridge.


We staggered back to the hotel after this, destroyed by the jet lag.

Saturday: Gig day! The band Ubered to Windsor. Our driver drove us to the address, and upon arrival said, "I don't know where we are, but you are here!" Quite a home.

the backyard


the front yard, with horses grazing

the house!

This gig was pretty great--I have zero complaints! The gear worked, the people were cool...yeah! Piece of cake. It always helps when people are dancing from the first song, as was the case on this night. I think we made a lot of new fans from all around the globe--we'll see where this gig takes us next!

Andy Warhol kept an eye on me

Sunday: The band headed home; my family headed to Stonehenge.


boom
The nearby town of Salisbury is beautiful, and we had a few hours to eat lunch and check out the town before heading back to London.

Salisbury Cathedral


Back in London, we headed out for dinner and some more exploring.

St. Paul's Cathedral

the Globe Theatre 

St. Paul's Cathedral, from the Millennium Bridge
Monday: Off to Paris!

King's Cross Church outside the train station

We took the Eurostar train that runs under the English Channel from London to Paris at 180 mph. Amazing.

lunch in Paris


Arc de Triomphe

Place de la Concorde

Jardin des Tuileries

the Louvre

Got it! Then, off to the Eiffel Tower! We took the stairs as far as we could, and then the elevator to the tip top. Incredible!



Friday: Our first mission was to head to Notre Dame.

Saint-Jacques Tower

the River Siene from Pont Notre-Dame

inside Notre Dame

outside Notre Dame
From there, we headed South through the city.


macaroons!

Pantheon


Val-de-Grace Hospital

We tried to go to the Catacombs, but the line was two hours long, so...to the subway!


Our next destination: Montmartre.

Sacre Coeur Cathredal

the view from the front door of Sacre Coeur

inside Sacre Coeur

And with that, it was time to head back, collect our suitcase, and make our way to the train station for the ride back to London.


zoom zoom


Wednesday: Another expensive cab to the Heathrow, boarded the plane, and sat there for 8 hours. Fun! I watched three movies (Battle of the Sexes, Deadpool, and The Reverant). Dead pool was ok, but the other two were really good.

Customs was hellish--a miserable hour long grind at the end of a long week.

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