Summer of 17.

The summer of a teacher is a beautiful thing.

That is unless it’s too short or you work too much. This year summer was both too short and I worked to much. That is if I were going back to teach on August 7. But I’m not. This is my retirement summer.

By the way you know how everyone makes the jokes about the best three reasons to be a teacher are June, July, and August? You can forget about that these days. The summer of 2017 was not even two months long – 59 days to be exact.

School ended on Thursday, June 8 and  I was on the road to Tampa on Sunday, June 11. So much for lounging around in retirement.

Trip 1. June 11-19. Tampa, Florida. AP Language and Composition scoring. Left on Sunday, June 11 for the Tampa Bay AP Language and Composition scoring adventure. We had been in Kansas City for two years, and I surprisingly loved it there. So even though there were many unknowns, since I would be rooming with Clifton and Jane would be there, I knew everything would be just fine. And it was.


IMG_3613.JPGTable 146. Synthesis. My table was great. Patricia was our table leader and there was very little drama. Just a lot of hard work. I loved every minute. One of the blessings was meeting Timm Frietas.

Trip 2. June 20-21. Las Vegas, Nevada. Global Entry Interviews. A two day quick trip  to get our Global Entry interviews done. The only issue was that it probably was the hottest day of a very hot summer. Christine and I have never driven to Las Vegas before so we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. At one point the temperature gauge in our car read 121 degrees. Later the fix engine light came on an we were sure it was going to mean we would be stuck there for days.

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Trip 3. June 26-28. Donner Lake, California. Dock Repair. During our very wet and snowy winter, our dock at Donner lake was completely decimated. In the process we found out that the Trex Christine’s dad had had installed was faulty and that Trex would replace the decking material for free. We had part of the understructure repaired by a profession, but we decided to do the work on the decking ourselves. I’ll just leave it at that.

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Trip 4. July 9-12.  Kansas City, Missouri. Adviser Academy. For the first time I actually got to teach at the Walsworth Adviser Academy. I’ve wanted to for years but was never asked. I was there primarily to promote the Adviser Mentor Program, but it was still a lot of fun. Even got to see Michael Franti at KC Crossroads.


Trip 5. July 17-20.  San Antonio, Texas. Lonestar South. I had been asked to teach here by Paula Adamek, one of my most favorite people in the Walsworth tribe. I had first met her at the first Walsworth Elite Weekend in Kansas City five years ago. Also got to meet Mitchell Franz another one of the great Texas photographers.

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Trip 6. July 21-25.  Orange, California. SoCal yearbooks. I love this workshop and have been doing it for years. The best part is it’s not a one-man show. I get to share it with some of my long time and favorite adviser friends.


Trip 7. July 30-August 2.  Dallas, Texas. Lonestar Yearbooks DFW. Lisa Llewlynn loves me and it’s always so much fun to work with her. Let’s just say the workshop was a little disorganized however. The highlight of the trip was staying with Lori and sharing a bathroom with her mother. And of course the BBQ at Hutchins in McKinney.

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Trip 8. August 3.  San Francisco, California. Grateful Dead Tribute Night. Booked these tickets in the spring. WE were hoping to see Bob or Phil. We got Moonalice and as many hot dogs that you could eat. It was still fun to get to walk on the field back to our seats. Former student Mark Malovos also hooked us up and we got into the Gotham Club. It was pretty spectacular.

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Trip 9. August 5-29.  Copenhagen. Fiesole. Firenze. Greve. Panzano. Volpaia. Assisi. Sorrento. Pompeii. Herculaneum. Positano. Amalfi. Capri. Anacapri. Montalcino. Lake Como. Copenhagen.  This was the retirement trip I had dreamed about. I wanted to be no where near Del Campo High School on that first day of school. Being in Italy was a pretty good exchange.

We flew into Copenhagen on Norwegian, stayed for a couple of days getting to know this beautiful city and then flew on Ryan Air into Italy at Bergamo.


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Day 2 Copenhagen – View from the Vor Frelsers Kirke – Sunday, August 6
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Day 2 Copenhagen – Nyhavyn – Sunday, August 6
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Day 3 Copenhagen – 108 – Monday, August 7

Fiesole above Firenze

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Day 4 Fiesole above Firenze – View from Room 34 at the Bencista – Tuesday, August 8
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Day 5 Firenze  – Donatello’s Mary Magdalene. Museo dell’Opera del Duomo, Firenze – Wednesday, August 9
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Day 6 Fiesole  – First Day of School on the terrazza at the Bencista – Thursday, August 10


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Day 7 Panzano  – With Dario Cecchini at Antica Macelleria Cecchini – Friday, August 11
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Day 8 Fiesole  – Bike ride up to Fiesole – Saturday, August 12
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Day 9 Fiesole  – Sunday at the Bencista – Sunday August 13


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Day 10 Assisi  – With Massimo Cruciani in Assisi – Monday, August 14
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Day 11 Assisi  – Basilica Papale di San Francesco d’Assisi and the Giotto frescoes – Tuesday, August 15


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Day 12 Above Sorrento  – View of Mt. Vesuvius from our hotel – Wednesday, August 16

Pompeii and Herculaneum

Day 13 Herculaneum  – Mosaic- Thursday, August 17

Amalfi Coast – Positano and Amalfi

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Day 14 Positano  – Classic view – Friday, August 18
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Day 14 Positano  – On our way out of Positano – Friday, August 18
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Day 14 Amalfi  – On the jetty in Amalfi – Friday, August 18
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Day 14 Amalfi  – Late lunch on the town square – Friday, August 18


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Day 15 Capri – Coming into the harbor at Capri – Saturday, August 19
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Day 15 Capri – Grotta Azzurra- Saturday, August 19
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Day 15 Anacapri – the chairlift- Saturday, August 19
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Day 15 Anacapri – The view from the top of the chairlift – Saturday, August 19


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Day 16 Sunday in Sorrento – Sunday at the limoncello factory – Sunday, August 20
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Day 16 Sunday in Sorrento – Sorrento harbor – Sunday, August 20


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Day 17 On the road to Montalcino – The cypresses near La Foce -Monday, August 21
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Day 17 Montalcino – The power table at Il Giglio – Monday, August 21
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Day 18 Montalcino – Brunello tasting – Tuesday, August 22
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Day 18 Montalcino –Abbazia di Sant’Antimo – the chanting monks went back to France – Tuesday, August 22
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Day 19 Leaving Montalcino – our room at Il Giglio – Wednesday, August 23

Lake Como

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Day 19 Lake Como – on the patio at Alberghetto del Marianna – Wednesday, August 23
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Day 20 Lake Como – On the way from Bellagio to Ghisallo – Thursday, August 24
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Day 21 Varenna – Break time at Moreno’s cookery class – Friday, August 25
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Day 22 Lake Como – Last morning – Saturday, August 26


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Day 22 Copenhagen – Back in Copenhagen. Bikes everywhere – Saturday, August 26
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Day 23 Copenhagen – Louisiana Literature Festival – Sunday, August 27
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Day 23 Copenhagen – Valeria Luiselli at the Louisiana Literature Festival – Sunday, August 27
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Day 23 Copenhagen – Lazy Sunday at the Louisiana Literature Festival – Sunday, August 27
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Day 24 Copenhagen – Tivoli Gardens – Monday, August 28
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Day 24 Copenhagen – Tivoli Gardens entrance – Monday, August 28
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Day 24 Copenhagen – Tivoli Gardens – the balloon ride  – Monday, August 28
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Day 24 Copenhagen – Tivoli Gardens – So beautiful  – Monday, August 28
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Day 24 Copenhagen – Tivoli Gardens – The gardens were stunning  – Monday, August 28
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Day 25 Copenhagen – Good bye Copenhagen. We’re heading home  – Tuesday, August 29

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