in progress

Cairo, Egypt 1990
In the winter of 1989 I went to Israel as part of a school trip.  We spent  about 10 days touring throughout Israel and the last 3 days of the trip was to Cairo, Egypt.
 

St. Ann's Bay, Jamaica 1990
Archaeology field school excavating the housing area of Seville Plantation.
Watched a burial exhumation.

St. Ann's Bay, Jamaica 1991
Archaeology field school excavating the housing area of Seville Plantation.
performed burial excavation.

Cancun, Mexico 1992
8 out-of-work archaeologists and one travel agent.
$128 included flight and 5 nights hotel
no food allowed in the hotel, but we brought in almost everything we ate.
watched 1992 election night coverage in hotel room while drinking and eating frijoles negros on tortillas
rented a van. went to Mayan ruins.

Zurich/Munich 1994
Dad, Alan and 2 of his kids and me.
only went for a few days. Flew to Zurich for a meeting. Not much memorable about city or meeting.
Miss Dilly was a very nice and interesting woman. She probably did not associate much with her clients, but my dad and Alan were insistant that she show us the finer points of Zurich. The city is much like the Wall St. area of NYC in that after business hours are over, the city gets really quiet. We went to dinner with Miss Dilly and I have no idea how she found it, but she took us to a bar called the Oepfelchammer. It was upstairs and contained in one single room. There was room for 4 tables with bench seats. There were six of us and only room enough for exactly six more people. You could not walk around the table, you had to climb over the table as everyone held their drinks. The other patrons all slid to one side to accommodate our party. There was only one waiter who stood in the doorway and you waved your hand to get his attention. You gestured with a number of fingers to order.  They only served one thing: red wine by the bottle. No food, no soda, not even white wine. Just red house wine and you ordered by the number of bottles you wanted, then the waiter disappeared and reappeared with your order.  Looking back on this night, I have no idea what made it so special. One of those right place, right time situations that you probably could not recreate if you tried. Again, I have no idea how Miss Dilly, a highly educated banker, heard about this place. A hang out for the younger crowd mostly.  And, I am certain that given almost any other circumstances my father would have balked enough at the sight of the arrangements that we wouldn't have had a chance to sit.  It was quite a night fifteen years ago and if I ever find myself in Zurich for a night, I intend to see if the Oepfelchammer, Rindermarkt 12, Zurich 8001, Switzerland (Old Town) is still there.
 
Kiss tour Germany 1999
In March 1999 I lived out a lifelong fantasy. Albeit, a little different than I had always imagined, but it was close enough. In 1996, my all time favorite band reunited for the first time in seventeen years. Kiss set out on a worldwide reunion tour and cashed in by putting on the most spectacular show most people had ever seen. I have never heard of one person who attended a reunion tour show that was disappointed. The tour lasted the better part of two years and sold out virtually every show on the itinerary. Then, in 1998, Kiss produced the "kiss" of death for a reunited band by putting out an entire album of new material. For as many people that were thrilled with the reunion experience, just as many were dismayed by the follow up tour. Being a fan that had stood by the band through every lean year leading up to the reunion, I was not overjoyed, but didn't find the record and tour as bad as many others. Because many of the fans had relived their childhoods on the previous tour, the interest in the 1998-99 tour was less than feverish. In fact, I am pretty certain that the entire tour was cut short since most shows were not very well attended, in fact the hometown show at Madison Square Garden was the only sellout on the tour. Since tickets were easier to come by for this tour, those who were interested could pretty much see the band wherever they wanted to. In November 1998 a friend of mine from Boston told me about a few guys he knew from Norway that were coming to the states to see Kiss  for six shows in a row. He said they had wanted for him to come down from Boston and be part of the trip. Since it was Thanksgiving week, he could not take the time away from his job or family long enough to make it work.  He knew I was going to three of the NYC area shows and gave my contact information to the guys to see if we could spend some time in NYC with them. We met and hit it off very well. So much so, that Tom, Tor, and Magnus invited me to join them for the Hartford, Rochester, and Buffalo shows.  I wound up having a great time and experience helping out with the driving and general getting around in exchange for hotel and concert tickets. A fun time for sure.
Then in February 1999, Kiss announced the European leg of their tour and Tom asked if I would be interested to join him to see five consecutive Kiss shows throughout Germany.  Of course I said yes.  I was responsible for booking my flight and purchasing the concert tickets, he was responsible for getting the hotel reservations and rail passes. Then in March 1999 I flew into Berlin to see the first of the five shows.  Unfortunately, the tour schedule did not leave much time for sightseeing and poking around the cities we were visiting and Tom was not very adventurous or interested in seeing the cities.  We traveled by train between cities and immediately found the tourist office to get details on how to find and get to the show in that city.  We also got the train schedules to our next city. Then we would go to the hotel, explore the neighborhood for a while, eat dinner and head to the show.  After the show we would usually find a bar near the hotel until bedtime. Then we would get up and get to the train station in order to get to the next city for the next show.  We saw five shows in six nights with the only night off in Frankfurt.  I do not remember doing much in the way of seeing landmarks.  I know we had a few very decent meals, but they weren't necessarily better than good pub food.  Great beer and a fun time seeing the band that brought us together for the first time.  We started our tour in Berlin, then went on to Cologne and to Frankfurt.  These were standard big cities and we really had no problems.  All of the arenas were within the city limits and easily accessible by the public transportation system.  We were able to train, tram or walk to every show.  Being March it was a little chilly, but there was no snow or inclement weather to deal with.  Then, the fourth show was in the town of Erfurt. This was the only show we saw in what used to be East Germany. What a depressing little town. It was so drab and dull looking. I don't know if that had anything to do with holdover from communist times, but the town just had a significantly different feel and look than the others we saw. It was the only show where the concert was held outside of town. The place was called the Messehalle and I don't know what its civic purpose is. The hall seemed more like a gymnasium than an arena.  The ceiling was so low, that during Gene's solo when he usually flies up to the ceiling on wires to start the next song.  At this show, there was no flying up, just walking out to center stage. There were no seats and everyone was in general admission. According to published figures there were only about 4000 people in attendance. The thing that made this particular show so good for me was the fact that being  a general admission floor, I was able to work my way up to the front row and of the more than 50 Kiss shows I have seen ranks as the closest I have ever been to the stage at any Kiss show. 
Rome, Italy 1999

London/Paris 2002

London/Madrid 2005

Paris 2006

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