Sunday, September 20, 2009


This post is being written 34,000 feet above the ground, on my way to Washington DC where I will take the connection flight to Buffalo, NY and then drive home to Canada.

I spent the first few hours of the flight in extreme pain; something must have gone wrong with my left ear and the air-pressure gap upon departure seemed to have aggravated it to no end. The pain slowly faded away (there is still some).

(Back to optimism again Isaac. Nobody is really interested to hear about your ear. Come on, put some smile on for God’s sake!)

Interesting things seem to happen to me while I am on vacation. Of course, unwinding and relaxation are two very welcome side-effects of being on vacation, however it does not end here; that is just the start. Ironically, unwinding and relaxation make me want to get out of my “comfort zone”, rather than making me want to stay there.

Cannot help but thinking that this is very bizarre.

As a matter of fact, the reason I took this vacation was Mark Knopfler’s Prince’s Trust concert. I got a VIP ticket and decided that there is very little in this world to make me not go, and if I am in Europe already, why not build a vacation around it?

Once again I realize that the highlights of this vacation are very similar, in nature, to the highlights in any of my previous ones, including the enormous Kill to Get Crimson tour I took last year: they all have to do with the people I meet along the way – people who I already know and happy to meet, and people whom I never met before and I am happy to meet for the first time.

Seriously: the best moments I am taking away from this trip, other than the Prince’s Trust concert for which I went to Europe in the first place, are (in chronological order):

  • Meeting with Jeroen, whom I met before, at the day of the concert;
  • Meeting with Daria, whom I got to know last year as she were following my Kill to Get Crimson blog and now we met for the first time, also at the day of the concert;
  • Meeting Zuzana for the first time – sweet lady. Hey, she drew a beautiful Mark Knopfler collage and dedicated it to me! now how cool is that, huh.
  • Spending time with Jeroen in The Netherlands;
  • Meeting my childhood friend, and the individual who I can rightfully refer to as my best friend, Ran Liebermann, back in London;
  • Meeting lots of people along the way, smiling at them, introducing myself and having spontaneous, funny conversations with them (and often some pictures, as well).

Other than these, I should say that the most exciting moment I had in the trip was at one particular afternoon, when I was walking through the streets of Amsterdam; gazillions of people around, and I am feeling like an ant trying to make its way to some unknown destination – when suddenly my BlackBerry went off ringing. It was an email from an individual who happens to manage, among other things, the contents of Mark Knopfler’s official Facebook fan page (, acknowledging my recent post about Listening to Get Lucky for the First Time; later, I realized that the post has been promoted to Knopfler’s Facebook page.

I have absolutely no idea who clued this individual into my post; but whoever you are, I thank you dearly.

“Happiness is only real when shared” wrote a remarkable individual named Christopher McCandless once trapped in Alaska with no way to cross his way back home (? who knows) after spending so much time alone.

So very true.

See you all next year, when I will be blogging my Get Lucky excursion. Until then, feel free to contact me (see profile page for email; Facebook is also a good option).

Isaac Shabtay

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