Posted on 31 July 2012 by brett
Pearl Jam Prague Finale
The Pearl Jam show in Prague was so inspiring that we decided to spontaneously follow the 10 Club to Berlin for two more shows. It did help that our new PJ friends (Dave & Lauren) offered their hospitality in Istanbul if we joined the parade. And, just when things were getting exciting….. we met our favorite guitarist Mike McCready at the Prague rail station. What an amazing guy traveling like a normal dude with his friends and family.
Mike McCready at Praha Train Station
In hindsight, I wish I had told Mike about my friend Kevin. I vividly remember our sophomore year at the University of Maryland listening to Mike’s side project “Mad Season”. Kevin loved the “Above” album and always wanted to play it along with Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains Unplugged. Mad Season is up there with some of my favorite albums of all time. The band consisted of Layne Staley (Alice in Chains), Barrett Martin (Screaming Trees), a friend of Staley’s from drug rehab and of course Mike on lead guitar. Like Kevin, Mike had alcohol abuse issues…. but fortunately was able to turn his life around. I wish I could say the same for Kevin and think about him everyday. We badly wanted Pearl Jam to play “Release” in Kevin’s memory. Continue Reading
Posted on 08 July 2012 by christie
Lively Streets of Krakow, Poland
Krakow, Poland wasn’t part of our travel itinerary. After detouring from Prague to Berlin for the Pearl Jam tour, traveling through Poland was essential to get back on track with our visit to the High Tatras in Slovakia. And, boy were we happy that we didn’t miss this wonderful little city, along with its friendly Polish residents.
Krakow is the second largest city in Poland, but still quite small compared to other cities we’ve visited in Europe. Our primary reason for staying a few nights in Krakow was to visit the Auschwitz concentration camps, which are just 80km outside the city. Brett had visited Poland several years ago and was sorry that he missed the opportunity to visit the camp. Krakow in itself is worth spending a few days, exploring its neighborhoods, sites and enjoying its riverside activities. Continue Reading
Posted on 07 July 2012 by brett
The Children of Auschwitz, Birkenau Camp
I had the chance to visit Krakow, Poland and the “Auschwitz” concentration/extermination camps in 2004. My visit to Poland was for business and I was petrified to see what happened there between 1940 and 1945 (the Soviet liberation). Our last minute trip to Berlin, Germany made it possible to reverse a past regret. On the way to Zdiar, Slovakia we spent a few days around Krakow and Auschwitz.
To summarize our experience, Auschwitz is a place everyone should see. Yes, it is unimaginably sad and gruesome….. but, at the same time a valuable reminder of how dangerous the world can be. Believe it or not, these Nazi Germany crimes happened less than 70 years ago. Operated by the Third Reich during WWII, Auschwitz was the largest death camp where 1.1 million of the 6 million European Jews were killed. Continue Reading