This is a time of year when we think about what's really important. One of my favorite thoughts: "These are the good old days." Considering our beautiful lot in life here in the USA in 2012, I can't imagine it getting much better. I'm making a point to enjoy where we're at, to be thankful, and -- as much as is honest -- to give things a positive twist.
Below you can watch part two of the blooper reel from the just-completed new season of my public television series, Rick Steves' Europe. Reviewing these clips, I'm reminded what a blessing it is to have work -- especially work you enjoy and believe in -- and how good it is to laugh while working hard with people you enjoy.
In this series of screw-ups, we see my producer Simon at work, carrying a huge tripod to the top of the Florence cathedral in case the cameraman might need it. While climbing, Simon repeats a phrase we all tell our children: "Pain is weakness leaving the body."
While I still prefer no "product" or makeup while working, we have discovered hairspray. After 20 years of cursing the wind and dribbling water on springy hairs, we now pull out the hairspray when needed. To be able to work with the wind kicking up has saved our hides many times.
Whether savoring delicious food with local friends, teaching ancient history on an ancient toilet, demonstrating the importance of a helmet deep inside the mine, imagining barbarians from present-day Scotland storming Hadrian's Wall, finding a piano to pound on, pitching hay high in the Alps at Gimmelwald or skipping through the rain at Castlerigg Stone Circle in the Cumbrian Lake District, watching these bloopers reminds me how much fun it is bringing home the wonders of Europe -- either with our guidebooks, tours or TV shows.
Thanks for traveling with us, and Happy New Year!