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What Lies A head

I said before we left for Arizona that the weather better be better when we get back to Ireland. We returned to Dublin five weeks ago and the weather still sucks. As usual I am sitting in our kitchen looking out on our terrace wondering when our tree is going to blow over the balcony. I actually can't stand to see it blow so I now face the kitchen when I write. It has been so windy the last few months that many times we have had to bring our outdoor furniture inside, in addition to our poor tree and pot that probably weigh about 500 pounds. If this tree does not make it through to summer Aaron and I will have to give up what we thought was our new hobby gardening and start buying fake trees, how disgusting.

Our terrace on a windy day.

We are leaving for Spain next week to visit his parents. I was very excited until I read the weather forecast, now I am just looking forward to it. Just kidding, still can’t wait. I am not sure where in Spain his parents live. All I know is we are flying into Alameda and they live near the water. I have been to Spain plenty of times and love it, especially the food. So anywhere new is great and I have not been this far south in Spain for longer than I can remember.

Michelle, (Aaron’s mother) has said she would like to take us to booty camp at the beach Saturday morning. I envision Aaron and I shouting at each other "work your booty girl" while in a fit of laughter. On vacation the most working out I do is making my way to breakfast or the beach. If we do have the time I think we would enjoy seeing Seville. Especially Aaron since he loves mythology and Seville was supposed to be built by Hercules, himself. Malaga is another city I have always wanted to visit. When I was in the South years ago I was in Marbella. I most remember the port and how much I loved looking at all the yachts, wondering when I would be able to buy my own. I would love to take Aaron there.

Gay couple. Mike and Asron on their wedding day

As long as it is not pouring and freezing we actually don’t mind the bad weather. We are both beach bums and overcast skies will force us to play tourist. What I am most looking forward to is not having to do any research before I go. I cannot stand looking at. “top things to do, top things to see, top restaurants, top clubs,” and having to make reservations etc. By the time I am done doing all of that I just want to stay home. Aaron has already been there so I am planning on him and his parents to do all of the planning while I sit back and relax.

We will be staying with his parents at their home. I have only met his parents a few times and they are very warm with great senses of humour. I can tell I must feel very comfortable around them because I did not suggest to Aaron we stay at a hotel. Unless I know people very well I would rather stay at a hotel, so I have my escape if I need one.

As a matter of fact the first time I came to Dublin to see Aaron I wanted to stay in a hotel but he just begged and pleaded I stay with him so what could I do? I relented. What a good choice I made. We left his room only one day and that was because I insisted on seeing some of the city before I returned to New York. I wonder what the outcome would have been if I had stayed at a hotel? Would we be married today? Thank God Aaron insisted.

MIke and Aaron out to dinner in Dublin.

Aaron and I both love to travel. If he didn’t have to go to the office everyday I know we would be on the road a lot more. I think growing up we must have loved to travel as an escape. We both grew up in small towns and it was very difficult being gay for us, not necessarily being gay but being out.

Oops! Aaron and I were just having dinner and I asked him to read what I had written for this Blog. When he was finished reading it he said to me, “ I hope you didn’t get tickets to Alameda because we're going to Alicante.” I got pretty scared for a minute but I did get the tickets to Alicante. I guess I have been a little too relaxed about paying attention to what Aaron has been saying about our vacation. Anyway if we ever do get farther south I would love to go back to Marbella and see Seville and Malaga. That sounds like a pretty good future vacation to me.

It is hard to believe but we have all our vacations planned out until March of 2023 so it will have to be sometime after that. In June Aaron is taking me to Portugal for my birthday. It’s funny everyone has great things to say about Lisbon, but they never say what is so great about it. I have a feeling it is just a great place to go for a few days. Great food, cafes, easy to walk and near the ocean. I’ll take it. If anyone has any recommendations feel free to send them our way.

In August my brother and his wife are coming to visit us in Dublin. Our first real visitors. When they are here we are going to travel around the country with them for a few days. Ireland is not a very large country but I have only been here two years and there is still lots more for me see.

I told Aaron if I am going to live in Ireland I need at least one good beach vacation a year. There are so few sunny days and good beaches in Dublin. In September we will be taking our beach vacation in Gran Canaria. It seems I might be seeing much more of Spain these next few years than I thought. . Gran Canaria is a Spanish island more off the coast of Africa than Spain. Aaron loves it there.

For Aaron’s birthday I am taking him to Newcastle, England for a football match. Newcastle is his favourite team. He has been an avid fan since he was a small kid and has stuck with them despite what a shit job they have done these past years. Since he has been talking about taking me to a match forever I figured it would be a great present. I will have to outfit myself with jerseys, hats and other Newcastle gear before he lets me go with him. That will be sometime in November I believe. Next it’s Christmas with his family down south where he grew up.

Finally next March we will fly to Los Angeles for a few days, so I can show Aaron HOLLYWOOD and my old stomping grounds from when I used to live there. We then plan on renting a car and driving to Palm Springs for a few days of sun and fun in the desert. I also want Aaron to see Joshua Tree. We will continue on from there to Scottsdale to see whoever from my family is there for the winter. No Grand canyon next year, once was enough. Oh, and maybe one night in Vegas so Aaron can see all the glitz.

MIke and Aaron at the Grand Canyon.

One of the best things about living in Europe is there are so many different places to go that are so close, with completely different cultures and histories. I have to say the local airlines are so much worse than in the States or maybe it is just the times. I find there are so many add on costs that by the time I am done buying what I think is an inexpensive ticket I might as well have gone 1st class. I also miss travel agents.

I make so many mistakes when I do it on my own. I have learned the hard way to pay attention to 12:00 AM and PM. Two times I have arrived at the airport to find my red eye left 12 hours earlier. I guess the 24 hour clock does have it's uses, even though I hate it. Another lesson, always check for the time change. Once coming home from Tunisia I had to go through Italy and missed my connecting flight back to LA because I forgot about the time change. I had to wait a full day for the next flight. Another time a friend and I were In Barcelona for a week. When we got to the airport to return to the Netherlands we both thought we were early for our flights for once. When we got to the ticket counter the agent told us we better run if we wanted to catch our flight. A perplexed look crossed our faces as we thought we were early. Well of course the whole time we were in Spain we neglected to change the time on our watches. I had a good laugh because that whole week we had reservations for lunches and dinners and not once did anyone tell us we were an hour late. In New York most likely we would not have been seated.

Looks like I’ve gone full circle, Can’t wait for Easter in Murcia, Spain with Aaron’s parents. I think I have that right now. If your a careless traveller like me, remember three things. Make sure you are going to the right place, If your taking the red eye make sure your ticket says 12:00 AM and always set your watch to the right time zone, Have a great Easter.

Mike and Aaron at home on their terrace.

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