2008 A Year in Review

It was another great year of traveling, music, friends, and a little bit of work. Oh yes, I did actually work a few months this year, and it was an ideal situation for me. 6 months of grinding through working life in London, England turned out to be an incredible summer. I was able to see many shows in London, travel around Europe every couple of weeks, and still save enough money for the 6 month holiday that I am currently on.

English Bay photo by Laura Ward

2008 brought me to new places, a new continent, new friends, and old friends. But following my travel route is like following a ping pong ball. This is a summary of my trips this year. Try to find the logic towards the itinerary…

  • Flew Vancouver to Mexico City for a weeklong roadtrip to south Mexico & flew back for 2 days
  • Flew Vancouver to Brazil via a week in New York then bussed around S America for 2 months
  • Flew Brazil to Dublin via 3 days in New York then flew to London for a week
  • Flew London to Vancouver for a week then
    Hitchhiked/Bussed/Drove Vancouver to Los Angeles via San Diego for 2 weeks
  • Flew Los Angeles to London via 1 day in Dublin to start work for 6 months
  • Flew London to Nashville, drove to New Orleans, Memphis, Manchester, Atlanta, and Columbia
  • Flew Columbia to Detroit to London
  • Trained London to Belgium for a weekend and back to London
  • Flew London to Slovakia, bussed to Austria for a weekend, and flew back to London
  • Flew London to Sweden for a weekend and back to London
  • Flew London to Norway for a weekend and back to London
  • Flew London to Italy for a weekend and back to London
  • Flew London to Venice, drove to Munich and Verona, trained to Milan, & flew back to London
  • Flew London to Mexico City via 1 day in Vancouver
  • Drove Mexico City to Cancun and flew to Havana for a week long Cuban road trip
  • Flew Havana to Cancun, drove to Mexico City in a week, and flew back to Vancouver
  • Drove Vancouver to Victoria for the weekend and back to Vancouver
  • Drove Vancouver to Seattle for the night and back to Vancouver
  • Flew Vancouver to Las Vegas for the weekend and back to Vancouver

Are you lost yet? This is the statistics from 2008. I started doing this a few years ago by looking back in the year to see how it measured up to the previous years, and 2008 did not disappoint.

WORK

  • 118 Days Worked
  • 7 days at the first London job, then I quit
  • 111 days at the second London job

TRAVEL

  • 18 Countries
  • 4 Continents
  • 164 days in London
  • 27 days in Europe
  • 50 days in South America
  • 10 days in Cuba
  • 30 days in Mexico
  • 38 days in US
  • 46 days in Vancouver

TRANSPORTATION

  • 130 hours on 24 trips by Air
  • 142 hours on 18 trips by Bus
  • 7700 kms on 13 trips by Road
  • Longest flight – New York to Sao Paulo 13 hrs
  • Longest bus ride – Cuzco, Peru to Santa Cruz, Bolivia 36 hrs
  • Longest drive – Mexico City to Cancun 1400kms and 15 hrs,
  • Most productive day – Breakfast in Florence, Lunch in Pisa, and Dinner in Bologna
  • Busiest travel day – Hitching a ride from Vancouver to Seattle, then bussing from Seattle to Sacramento, then hitching a ride from Sacramento to Santa Cruz
  • Craziest route to a destination – Flying London to Venice then driving to Munich and back to Verona then training to Milan to fly back to London.

Bonnaroo

TOP 3 CONCERTS

  • Nine Inch Nails in Victoria, BC
  • Pearl Jam at Bonnaroo
  • Sigur Ros in Gotenburg Sweden

OTHER PERFORMANCES WORTH NOTING

  • Iron Maiden in Sao Paulo
  • Bruce Springsteen in Vancouver
  • Eddie Vedder in San Diego
  • Wintersleep in London
  • The Swell Season in London and Bonnaroo
  • Raconteurs, Gogol Bordello, and Jake Shimabukuro at Bonnaroo
  • Neil Young at Werchter and Gotenburg
  • The Wu Tang Clan in London
  • Nine Inch Nails in Las Vegas
  • Metric in Vancouver

Guinness factory

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE YEAR

  • Puerto Escondido
  • Mexican Food
  • Roy Jones VS Felix Trinidad fight at Madison Square Gardens
  • The Cherry Tree Bar in Brooklyn
  • Brazilian Churrasco
  • Surfing Florianopolis
  • New England Patriots losing the Super Bowl and their perfect season
  • Brazilian Carnival
  • Samba Gringo Samba
  • Mini zoo and the worst museum ever in Porto Alegre
  • Argentinean Beef
  • Eating two Argentinean steaks on my birthday
  • Watching wrestling in Santiago, Chile and talking to the Edge about hockey
  • Wrestling a blowup doll on Chilean TV and being called Dragon Steamboat then Pokemon
  • VIP Cama busses in South America
  • Chilean Coast
  • Copacabana, Bolivia
  • The woman who sold me a sweater in Puno, Peru after she found us like 10 times
  • Cuzco, Machu Picchu and Coco leaves in Peru
  • Iron Maiden in Brazil
  • Pousada Tribo in Ubatuba, Brazil
  • Visiting relatives in Rio de Janeiro
  • Hanging out with Tatiana and Venassa in Brazil
  • St Patrick’s Day in Dublin, showing up unannounced
  • Whelan’s Pub in Dublin
  • Being a tourist in Vancouver
  • Bruce Springsteen on Mon, Blind Melon on Tues, and Eddie Vedder on Wed and Thur
  • On the road with Newfie Joe
  • Eddie Vedder west coast tour
  • Falling asleep at the 2nd to last Eddie Vedder show
  • My first pair of sanuks
  • Throwing away my flight to stay 6 more hours at Whelan’s in Dublin
  • Quitting my first job of the year after one week
  • Stefan showing up for Shawn Smith in London
  • On the guest list for Swell Season at the Barbican
  • Foo Fighters at Wembley Stadium
  • New Orleans
  • Southern Roadtrip
  • Bonnaroo
  • Pearl Jam at Bonnaroo
  • Back stage passes at Bonnaroo (thanks Leigh)
  • Stealing beer from Donovan Frankenreiter and Cat Power with my pass at Bonnaroo
  • Sigur Ros staff recognizing me for trying to use their toilets at Bonnaroo then giving my a free ticket to the show in London, after all hope was lost
  • Seeing Vancouver friends in Europe
  • Euro Cup final in Vienna
  • Staying at Wombats
  • Last minute decision to attend Rock Werchter
  • Concerts in London
  • Weekend in Sweden
  • Nottinghill Carnival
  • Visiting la casa de Pin
  • Full roast lamb and party in the woods in Oslo
  • Discovery of La Volte wine in Florence
  • Chianti wine festival
  • Eating 1 kg of buffalo mozzarella cheese
  • Oktoberfest
  • Living in Old Street on the canal
  • Tom Brady injuring his ACL
  • Dolphins 38 – Patriots 13
  • Mexican road trip
  • Tulum, Mexico
  • Shelley’s wedding in Cuba
  • Cuban road trip with amigos
  • Felix and his crew in Cuba
  • Six pack of beers and quesadillas in Mexico
  • Manny Pacquaio mexecuting Oscar De la Hoya
  • Hanging out with Mike McMcready in Seattle
  • NIN in Victoria and Las Vegas
  • Miami Dolphins AFC Champions

LOWLIGHTS OF THE YEAR

  • Losing my bank card in Santiago, Chile
  • Closure of the Inca Trail during Feb
  • Cancellation of my route on the Death Train into Brazil
  • Missing out on Tom Morello’s solo gig in Hollywood
  • Missing Pemberton Festival, NIN in Red Rocks, and various weddings on the mainland
  • Not getting into a tent at Oktoberfest
  • Getting ripped off left right and center in Cuba including the CUC exchange rate

rockband

PLACES TO VISIT IN 2009

  • Hawaii
  • Toronto/Ottawa/Montreal
  • Hong Kong/Macau
  • South East Asia, Nepal
  • Portugal, Hungary, Slovakia, Russia
  • Africa?

SHOWS TO SEE IN 2009

  • Anything in Hawaii
  • Hot Wax and Champagne in Toronto
  • New festival in Malibu?
  • Coachella if not Bonnaroo again
  • Roskilde Festival in Denmark
  • Glastenbury Festival in UK
  • Any show at Red Rocks
  • Nine Inch Nails in Europe
  • Pearl Jam wherever

Gracias to everyone for making 2008 such an amazing year. 2009 will be even better! See you guys soon!

Jason
Jason

Jason is the author of the book This All Encompassing Trip and loves to travel to see Pearl Jam. He spends his time doing design and video work as well as running a daddy blog called The Rockstar Dad.

5 Comments

  • I love your year end reviews. Sounds like another great one. I find life just keeps on getting better and better the older we get. Will have to do up a year in review tomorrow…

  • You have the fantastic city of TORONTO on your list of places to visit?!? Is the Earth off its axis?

    NIN on the Pacific Rim will trumph Europe 😉

  • I’m glad that I could be in some of your events.
    More one year started now… And I wonder… Where and when I going to meet you again??? 🙂
    See you soon!

  • Wow Jason you never cease to amaze me… except you forgot to put Australia on your to-do list for 09… 🙂

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