I found it entirely different from Vienna's clinical and hyper-organized structure -- instead, it's haphazard meshing of language, architecture, and culture was entirely beautiful. The occasional peeling paint and abandoned building only added to it's distinct character.
It was the last time I will be in the Netherlands for a while -- my year in Paris is nearly finished. This trip was more a last hurrah than anything -- and last hurrahs don't end by slinking back to the city with your tail between your legs. Last hurrahs end with hitchhiking.
Last weekend in Tlapacoyan, Mexico, Salvador Garcia Alvarez talks about his town emptying out of men each year as they go north to work in American carnivals. This time of year, they come home to families and a different world.
I believe traveling carnivals are worthy of study because they operate so close to the heartbeat of local epicenters -- neighborhoods, churches, commercial hubs. At that spot they increase the pulse with sights, sounds, tastes and thrills.
Among its many firsts, the Chicago World's Fair featured the first Ferris Wheel and the midway layout has become a standard for carnivals. These days the burlesque shows are gone and most freak shows too, but midways remain hotspots for carnivals games and ride.
So much of my time hitchhiking, I think of roads. Of Patch workers on ice roads. Of roadside running caribou. Of traveling carnival convoys. Of runners in love living their dream lives on the road. There's a lot of living on the road and some rides go far.