Pre-departure Prélude

Trip Start Aug 08, 2006
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Trip End Oct 11, 2006


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Flag of United States  , Texas
Monday, August 7, 2006

Houston

Since the fall of 2005, I wanted to make one big non-stop trip around the world. But with limited time off, I had to apportion 1 big trip into 4 segments: Europe in October, East Asia in January, South America in February, and Oceania in April. The world seen in piecemeal fashion was made more interesting by my being able to experience the beautiful, radiant colors of autumn twice in six months.



Now it is August. Fall will soon encroach upon my doorstep once again. Taking advantage of the quietly changing season, I am ready to embark on my most ambitious global trek yet. With a carry-on luggage and a Round-The-World (RTW) ticket in hand, I am ready to fly 1 1/2 times around the world. And I thought this travelogue would be one way for me to stay in touch with those who will be missed on my journey. I would like to have my family and friends be a part of the experience with me -- to follow along from the Buddhist temples in Japan to the Orthodox churches in Russia, from the medieval castles in Germany to the grand Moghul palaces in India, from the rolling hills of Umbria, Italy to the vast steppes of Mongolia, from The Great Wall of China to the Grand Arch of the Défense in Paris, from the flamenco bars in Spain to the karaoke bars in Japan. I hope to give you a front row seat to the world stage where history and culture will be the principal actors amidst contradistinctive landscapes. As well, several reunions with old friends will unfold in conjuction with a few weddings.

Here's my general itinerary (if everything goes as planned)

8/8/06 - Depart Houston (American Airlines)
8/9/06 - Osaka, Japan
8/13/06 - Depart for Beijing, China (All Nippon Airways)
8/16/06 - Nighttime Trans-Mongolian Train
8/17/06 - Ulaan Baatar, Mongolia
8/18/06 - Terelj National Park, Mongolia
8/20/06 - 40-hr Trans-Mongolian Train into Russia
8/22/06 - Lake Baikal and Homestay with a Russian family in Listvyanka, Siberia
8/23/06 - Irkutsk, Siberia
8/24/06 - 65-hr Trans-Siberian Train Across Central Asian Taigas and Tundras
8/27/06 - Vladimir, Russia and Suzdal, Russia (the famous Golden Ring region)
8/28/06 - Moscow, Russia
8/31/06 - St. Petersburg, Russia
9/2/06 - Depart for Frankfurt, Germany (Aeroflot and Scandinavian Airlines)
9/3-7/06 - Rüdesheim and Heidelberg, Germany
9/8/06 - Gubbio, Italy
9/9/06 - Wedding of Lucia and Carlo in Gubbio (Regione: Umbria), Italy
9/11-18/06 - Naples, Sorrento, Isle of Capri, Pompeii, Amalfi Coast, and Reggia Caserta
9/19-20/06 - Milan, Italy and Lake Como
9/21/06 - Paris, France
9/25/06 - Lodosa, Pamplona, Briones, and Logroño, Spain
9/29/06 - Rehearsal Dinner in Lodosa, Spain
9/30/06 - Wedding of Marta and John in Lodosa (Provincia: Navarra), Spain
10/1/06 - Depart for Madrid, Spain (Iberia Airlines)
10/2/06 - Depart for New Delhi, India (Swiss Air)
10/3/06 - Train to Dehra Dun, India
10/3-6/06 - Mussoorie and Rishikesh, India
10/5/06 - Wedding of Daria and Ashish in Dehra Dun, India
10/8/06 - Taj Mahal in Agra, India
10/9/06 - Jaipur, India
10/10/06 - Leave New Delhi
10/11/06 - Return home to Houston (Continental Airlines)

With time and internet connection permitting in the 4 corners of the world, I hope to have my narrative and photographic entries updated as much as possible. Please keep checking back. Feel free to leave any comments or suggestions, as I am also eager to hear from you all

3 Weddings. 9 Countries. 10 Languages. 64 Days.
The adventure begins on August 8.
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