Posted in (All Posts)

Europe-bound, and I’ve already misplaced my father

Well, today’s the day. I write this while on a plane to France, and as a child furiously kicks the back of my seat. I’m both excited and nervous. The main reason for my anxiety is that my father’s travel agent made a mistake and booked his flight so that he arrived in Paris 26 hours before I’m scheduled to. That wouldn’t be as much of a problem, but my dad is now of an age, and he forgets things (not to mention that he hasn’t been abroad since 1991 when we went to Mexico and Belize together. Things have changed a bit since then.)

A little background information might be useful. I visited Paris last year in the spring, and the trip was a whirlwind. I didn’t feel that I had nearly enough time to see what I’d hoped to, and so I booked another trip less than a year after. This time, I’d be traveling in the fall, and this time, I’d be completely alone. Of course, that’s no longer the case because my father decided to join me. He is planning the retirement trip of his bucket-list dreams. He’ll be in Europe for five weeks after I’ve gone back home, and he’s going to have a blast. However, I’d hoped to be there to initiate him into European life. My dad needs a few lessons for things – like using the Metro, the Euro, confirming airline reservations online, checking into a hotel by showing an email, and a translator wouldn’t hurt, either!

In the last month, I’ve seen my dad two or three times a week, and without a word of a lie, he’s lost, misplaced, or completely forgotten something I’d said every time. He has lost his hearing aid (just one,) important paperwork, iPod charger, money, iPod case, jacket, keys, cell phone, and travel itinerary in that brief time. He’s pretty lackadaisical when it comes to time (you have to be at the airport three hours before your flight,) following rules (no liquids!), bringing copies of documents (I kept his passport in my safe hands until yesterday,) putting things down in weird places (“Have you seen my glasses?”), having a European outlet converter (he doesn’t,) simply owning an iPod charger (“It’s charged up pretty good so I should be fine,”) taking note of my cell phone number (“I don’t think I’ll need my phone over there,”)

I made him buy an iPod (a.k.a. an iPhone without the possibility of roaming charges) and we’ve had lessons several nights over the past couple of weeks. I think he almost gets it, but then he’ll get trapped in a window, and has no idea how to get “home” again. I asked him (from the kitchen) to take a selfie and send it to me. What I received was a blurry picture with my name written over it. I taught him how to use the voice dictation, and the gems that emerged from that were tear-inducing. However, we always had a connection to my home’s WiFi, and I fear that I was never able to show him how to get onto free public WiFi. As a result, he is now completely AWOL God-knows-where.

I’ve sent my almost 70-year-old father to the wolves. I’m shitting myself. I love him dearly, and I don’t mean to make him sound like a fool, but he’s from another era. Right now, he might as well be on another planet. I imagine this is what it feels like to send your kindergartner to school on the first day of school. On foot. Carrying a lot of cash. With a two kilometer walk. And two crosswalks. In the rain. In 1980.

Dear God, please protect my aging father who thinks my facebook wall is a chat window. 🙏🏻

Posted in (All Posts), Travel

Eat Play Louvre: Day 5- Sacré-Cœur ❤️

IMG_1494After breakfast, we decided to explore Montmartre. At the foot of the hill, there is a vibrant neighbourhood of wonderful vintage clothing shops. I found a hand-made vintage dress that my daughter is going to just love!

I have officially found my Happy Place.

After exploring the shops, many of which were built over ancient stone cellars, we stumbled across a quaint little café. I just love the energy here! We have cafés at home, and many have patio seating, but there is something so romantic about drinking coffee with this amazing architectural backdrop and surrounding by sophisticated people speaking French. It’s like being in a dream! Continue reading “Eat Play Louvre: Day 5- Sacré-Cœur ❤️”

Posted in (All Posts), Culture, Travel

Eat Play LOUVRE: Day 4-Meeting Mona

IMG_7113Our organized “tour” of the Louvre came with a confusing map, and an even more confusing audio guide. After frustratedly trying to work it out, we left the museum in search of lunch to soothe our hungry hearts and minds. The lunch was surprisingly good! Actually one of the best I had in Paris! It was a pretzel baguette. Magnifique!

IMG_1472.jpgThe museum, of course, was breathtaking. Particularly when a pre-recorded message and alarm sound instructing “all guests to proceed to the exits immediately.” I was truly scared, but it seems I was the only one. Everyone else was chilling there taking in the art and beauty. The security guards assured us it was nothing, but the message repeated several times that it was anything but. Continue reading “Eat Play LOUVRE: Day 4-Meeting Mona”

Posted in (All Posts), Culture, Travel

Eat Play Louvre: Day 3 – A Birthday in Paris

empty restaurant

continental breakfast







My birthday! I woke up early and excited. I was the first to arrive in the hotel restaurant for breakfast. After I ate, I went back to sleep for a couple of hours. Then, I showered and went exploring. The neighborhood is nice in parts, un peu risqué in others with sex shops and lap dance bars. The Moulin Rouge is steps away from the hotel. The strip is sexy and provocative. There are sex toys shaped like the Eiffel Tower. Some shops cater to straight sex, some bondage, some gay. Mannequins wearing butt-less chaps, thong underwear, feathers and latex rule the day here.

IMG_1393I walked in a slightly different direction on my birthday morning toward Continue reading “Eat Play Louvre: Day 3 – A Birthday in Paris”

Posted in (All Posts), Culture, Travel

Eat Play Louvre: Day 1-2,  London to Paris

This is travel day!

It was a little stressful and I hardly had time to do anything to get ready yesterday because:

A. Our power was out from 11:30 pm until 5:00 pm the next day! And

B. We had a wedding to go to at 5 pm. So, we had to get ready in the dark, and with lukewarm water. It was a challenge; we were late to the wedding and almost missed the ceremony! (That’s me hiding in the gauze.)

After the wedding, I forced myself to stay awake until 3 am to try to turn my internal clock around. I was mostly successful.

I flew into London early on Monday morning. I was incredibly lucky to have this ridiculous seat next to the window. I don’t think I’ve ever had this much leg room in my entire life. Thanks, Edwin (who changed my seat!) My flight was delayed (of course) so I only had about two hours to look around London. It was just enough time to take the above photo of me with the red telephone box and then I wasn’t sure where to go, so I ended up at the Covent Market (next to Covent Gardens.) The only things I ended up buying were a tiny replica red phone box and double decker bus to decorate my bathroom… Yes, I said my bathroom.

There had been an attack at an Ariana Grande concert days before in Manchester, so security was through the roof. In addition to the heightened security, there was also a major computer breakdown at British Airways, so cancelled flights had magically been transformed into train trips, significantly increasing ridership for a couple of days. Below is a photo of the queue to get into the queue (or the line up for the line up, for those who only speak American.) People were shouting, fighting, crying… It was all kinds of crazy. This pic is before even entering on the left. There were about three times this many people on the other side of the doors, but NO CAMERAS.

My hotel in Paris is pretty swanky! It’s an old apartment building converted into a hotel. My room is on the fifth floor, and I learned that there was an elevator only after climbing the stairs with all my luggage. It’s in the weirdest location just floating in the middle of the lobby and disguised as a Coke Machine. The interior of the elevator is mirorred on all sides to give the illusion of being bigger than an elevator with a two-person (or person + suitcase) maximum capacity.

Now I’m in my hotel room. I’m hot & hungry, but happy. Time for a shower and a bite to eat!

Gotta conserve my energy for tomorrow: MY BIRTHDAY IN PARIS!!!! 😆

Peace out, world!


Posted in (All Posts), Culture, Travel

Eat Play Louvre: My Solo Trip to Europe – Prologue

So the backstory to my sudden, radical decision to travel alone to Europe is a good one.

Back in December, my younger sister and I decided to take a trip together. At first, we were imagining backpacking around Southeast Asia, or hitting up some beaches somewhere, but in the end we settled on Europe. We were going to fly into Paris, then travel to Spain, see the Italian coast and finish in Rome. Sadly, circumstances shifted and the plan ceased to be a plan. My  beautiful sister went on to travel elsewhere with her lovely new man, and I had a hard time letting go of my dream.

Where I work, we have personnel management software that we use to book time off. I had heard that May was the best time to see Europe, so I booked off two weeks well in advance so I’d be sure to secure the best dates. I was reluctant to give up such a perfect two-week break that would include my birthday. However, I did eventually delete my time off request, I just neglected to tell anyone at work. The proper thing to have done would have been to send an email alerting the powers that be that I’d changed my plans. I didn’t do that, and nobody knew I wasn’t going anywhere. Maybe I was secretely hoping the following would occur…

My workplace MADE OTHER ARRANGEMENTS and found a replacement for me while I’d be gone. In other words, I had a “vacation,” without having a vacation if you catch my drift. Oh noes! I panicked and called my husband. I was sure he’d be angry with me. “What are you going to do with two weeks off work?” But he shocked me. Instead, he said, “You know what? You deserve the break. It’s been a tough year for you. Why don’t you fly off somewhere? Enjoy yourself.” I was speechless.

I immediately contacted my HR person, and she was cool with letting me shorten my vacation by a week, but to still take part of it. So now, I had less than a week to plan something! Holy crap! Most people suggest planning a Europe trip at least a year in advance. I’ve got five days to put this together. Oh. Em. Gee.

Of course, it’s all planned, and I have written this in advance. I will publish this the morning of the day that I’m leaving. First stop: London, England.

Stay tuned….

Posted in (All Posts), Music

Carpool Karaoke – The (Almost) Complete Song List!

Sometimes I lie in bed at night hating on James Corden a little. That dude has my dream job. If there’s one thing I am good at, it’s belting out a tune in the car (much to the chagrin of my teenaged daughter. She’s even filmed me at it more than once, but I digress.)

I just did a thing so you don’t have to. I watched EVERY SINGLE episode of Carpool Karaoke and made a list of all of the songs found therein. Why? Because I discovered Spotify two weeks ago, and was saddened to discover that no one had made a playlist based on the show. I have since remedied that serious flaw in the world. My playlist (username  angelair75) can be found on Spotify under Carpool Karaoke – James Corden  should you care to sing in the car like James Corden (or myself.)

So, without further ado, here’s the song list! Click on the artist’s name to watch the Carpool Karaoke epidode!

( or listen HERE – All original song recordings only)


images-11Bruno Mars

  • 24 K Magic
  • Locked Out Of Heaven
  • Grenade
  • If I Knew
  • Uptown Funk
  • Perm
  • Versace on the Floor


  • Vogue
  • Bitch, I’m Madonna
  • Papa Don’t Preach
  • Express Yourself
  • Music (Hey Mr. DJ)

Lady Gaga

  • images-4Perfect Illusion
  • Bad Romance
  • The Edge of Glory
  • Born This Way
  • Poker Face
  • Million Reasons

Britney Spears

  • images-10Oops!… I Did it Again
  • Toxic
  • Womanizer
  • Make Me
  • … Baby One More Time

Selena Gomez

  • Same Old Love
  • images-1Keep My Hands to Myself
  • Love You Like a Love Song
  • Kill ‘Em with Kindness
  • Come & Get It
  • Shake it Off (Taylor Swift)


  • Hello
  • imgres-3Someone Like You
  • All I Ask
  • If You Wanna Be My Lover (Spice Girls)
  • Monster (Nicky Minaj)


Mariah Carey

  • imgres-5Always Be My Baby
  • Vision of Love
  • Thirsty
  • Rolling in the Deep

The First Lady Michelle Obama & Missy Elliott

  • Single Ladies
  • This is For My Girls
  • Signed, Sealed Delivered
  • images-9Get Ur Freak On

Demi Lovato & Nick Jonas


  • Heart Attack
  • Stone Cold
  • Confident
  • Close
  • imgres-4Jealous
  • Chains
  • Cake By the Ocean

Stevie Wonder

  • Superstitious
  • I Just Called to Say I love You
  • Sir Duke
  • Signed, Sealed Delivered
  • images-2Isn’t She Lovely?
  • For Once in My Life

Jennifer Hudson

  • Trouble to Me
  • Spotlight
  • And I’m Telling You I’m not Going

imgres-8Carrie Underwood


  • Smoke Break
  • Jesus, Take the Wheel
  • Before He Cheats
  • Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go

images-5Chris Martin


  • Adventure of a Lifetime
  • Yellow
  • Hymn for the Weekend
  • Viva La Vida
  • Us Against the Worldimages-12
  • Heroes
  • Paradise

Elton John

  • Tiny Dancer
  • imgres-9Your Song
  • I’m Still Standing
  • Circle of Life
  • Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me
  • Crocodile Rock
  • Looking Up

Gwen Stefani, Julia Roberts & George Clooney

  • Don’t Speak
  • The Sweet Escape
  • imgres-1I Used to Love You
  • Rich Girl
  • Hollaback Girl
  • We Are The Champions

One Direction

  • What Makes You Beautiful
  • The Story of My Life
  • Best Song Ever
  • imgres-7No Control
  • Perfect
  • Drag Me Down


Iggy Azalea

  • Fancy
  • imgres-6Black Widow
  • Trouble
  • Pretty Girls


Jennifer Lopez

  • Love Don’t Cost a Thing
  • images-7Booty
  • Jenny From the Block
  • Waiting for Tonight
  • Qué Hiciste
  • On the Floor
  • Locked Out Of Heaven (Bruno Mars)

Red Hot Chili Peppers

  • Give it Away
  • images-8Californication
  • Can’t Stop
  • Under the Bridge
  • Dark Necessities
  • The Zephyr Song
  • By the Way

Rod Stewart and A$AP

  • The First Cut is the Deepest
  • imgres-10Da Ya Think I’m Sexy?
  • Maggie May
  • Ooh La La
  • Everyday

Justin Bieber (1)

  • Baby
  • Boyfriend
  • Where are Ü Now
  • imgres-2End of the Road

Justin Bieber (2)

  • Never Say Never
  • What Do You Mean
  • Stronger (Kanye West)
  • Ironic
  • Sorry


  • Chandelier
  • Elastic Heart
  • Alive
  • Titanium


I’ve added 117 (original) songs so far (not featuring James Corden) with more to come. I hope you enjoy it! Let me know in the comments if you have any suggestions or edits. I used the app SoundHound on iOS for the songs I wasn’t familiar with. I apologize if I’ve made any goofs to both the artists and their fans. ❤