"If there's a bright centre to the Universe..." rickyvilla81's Profile
I have been to a few places, and many others besides. Some of those I have written about here (though some of the writings go back six years or so, and are a little, well, out-dated now), and have many more to add (which may take a while, perhaps my whole life, hopefully). In the meantime, sit back, relax, have a cup of tea, and enjoy.
pete's sketchblog: full of pictures of places pete goes to occasionally
Having lived in London for most of my life, as well as short spells in Aix-en-Provence and Charleroi, I now live with my wife and son in Davis , California. The 'Republic of Davis', they call it. In the flat Central Valley, where hay fever sufferers go to experience their worst nightmares. It gets very very hot in summer, and pretty bloody rainy in winter.
I met Lord Vader in New York. "You do not understand the power of the Dark side," he sighed. "That's right," I agreed wearily. We had lunch, we drank some beers (he used a straw, if you're wondering), we discussed endlessly the trouble with Bush and his domestic spying policies, and touched on the thorny issue of 'separation of Force and State', leading to a beery argument about the so-called 'War on the Force'. It was taken outside, where lightsabre clashed with lightsabre. He cut my hand off, but I grabbed a broken bottle with my other hand and rammed it into his mouthpiece. We were both apprehended by the NY cops and taken downtown to cool off; in the paddy-wagon he told me in a sad alcoholic slur I was not only his 'best friend', but he was 'my father'. '
"He says that to everyone," the cop assured me. "I bet," I said, before adding: "you couldn't give me a hand, could you?" He'd heard that before, too.
And this is where it all began. This is me, aged but a year old, with my next door neighbour Barry, who though unrelated, definitely looks like a twin. Which one am I? I'm the one playing air guitar.
Even then I knew how to rock out. I don't look much different now, maybe a bit taller.
"Walking around on a Saturday night, when the earth was hit by a meteorite
And I'll never know if it was love that you felt
'Cos I ended up in an asteroid belt"
(David Devant and His Spirit Wife)
So yeah, America. When I first began virtualtouristing I was living in Belgium and had flip-all else to do. Back then, California was like the end of the earth, and I never imagined I'd end up living out here. But here now in 2008, that's where I am, a Brit abroad, adjusting to a life without match of the day and asbo collectors.
The guitar in this photo is now dead. It fell over and its head fell off. don't laugh, I was really upset. I replaced it with a swanky electric guitar; but you really can't beat an acoustic, can you.
The funny thing about having now moved to America, though, is that I now have less time to travel. I work more, but you don't get as much holiday time in the US as you do in Europe, and whatever I get is spent going back to the UK to visit family and friends. Nevertheless, I've managed to see a few new places since moving here - California itself is probably the most interesting and varied of all the US states, and we are perfectly placed between the Bay Area and the Mountains.
This photo was taken at Laguna Beach in southern CA.
I also like to draw places I've been to, which can often be more interesting than a photo, although it's usually far less accurate. But it records how I felt about a place, how I felt . So that makes it ok. I like pen, pencil, watercolour. My ideal trip would be one in which I just travelled about with a sketchbook and some pens and brushes and just drew everything I saw. What a thing to look back at. I don;t care if people think it's crap art, that's not important; it's like my diary after all.
The picture shown here was done in San Francisco.
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