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During my travels, my compensation for free accommodation for one night, was for me to write a daily travel diary. Of how I got to my next location, the people who would host me, the food I was offered and everything else. Below you find the archives of the highly extensive reports. Know that English is not my native language and most reports were written at high speed around midnight. Enjoy.

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Tuesday, 1 May 2001
Zwolle --> Hilversum (NetherLands) - Departure day!

Welcome to the first report on For as long as time can be on my side during this project, I intend to report about my daily adventures in this kind of reports.

English is my second language here in The Netherlands, so don't think I am too bad for an Englishman's writing: I am Dutch.

Here I go....

At 12 O'clock in the afternoon I waved goodbye to my parents, friends and neighbours. Eagerly captured by two television-crews, some radioreporters and two photographers. It felt pretty emotional inside of me; I am not really used to say goodbye to parents and real friends for a long time.

My fellow dutch weblogger Tonie also came to see if I really started off today and immediately offered me a trainticket, because he had to go to work anyway. So I sat on the back of a friends' bike while he and a small group of friends escorted me to the local trainstation.

Tonie works as an editor at Planet Internet, one of the Dutch best internet providers - they say -, in Amersfoort, which is on the way to Hilversum where i would have my first overnight-stay in a radiostudio. In Amersfoort we walked a little 15 minutes rn(me with my heavy backpack and equipment) to the building In this small Sillicon Valley Park. He introduced me to some of his collegues and then thought it was a good time for his breakfast (at 1.30 Pm). Therefore he took me to a little restaurant across the street where we both enjoyed a great healthy meal. rnAnd It was Tonie's treat!
After my lunch (and his breakfast) I rnhung around the editorial office for a while untill 4 pm and then thanked Tonie rnand the rest - ready to go on the train to Hilversum again.
Fun rnfact: getting off the train in media city Hilversum I met Martijn, a rnjournalism student who had interviewed me earlier this week for the Dutch World rnBroadcast Organisation (Wereldomroep), and he just finished editing and sending rnthat same radiopiece at the Media Park. What a coincidence!
At 5.30 pm I arrived at the door of the radiostudio rnof Radio 3FM where I was told by the Reception that I could stay in a hotel, rnbecause the radioshow would start at 3 am until 6 am in the morning. With a rnhotelroom I could get a free meal in the restaurant and already have some sleep. rnWhat a gesture was that! 
The hotel was no more than 500 meters away and there I was - not believing anything about it rnin the first place! At the hotel I fell asleep very fast and was picked up by the host of the radioshow, Patrick Kicken rnaround 2 o'clock at night. In his little and messy office we discussed a little rnbit which music had to be played and at 3 am the show started. On the air it had rnto sound like I was really sleeping on the studiofloor, which was an easy job rnfor me to pretend. Later I joined in and talked about this travel project, the rnhitch-possibillites by plane and gave him "The Gift".
The Gift?
rnLet me introduce The Gift. Every host I visit gets a little present from the rnformer host I have visited and has to pass on a little thingy to the next host rnalso. 
This way the generosity of all the people who have already invited me and rnthose that I will visit all get a little extra rewards. I thought it was a neat idea, also to think that this will become a big gifts-exchange-chain in a few months!

rnUPDATE ON THE GIFTS (added one year later into this rnreport): I could continue the gift-thing for some 8 months from now. In Spain it rnended as the chain got broken a few times and I got a bit tired of carrying all rnkinds of stuff with me. I already carry some 30kg materials with me. And as you rnmight notice soon, some gifts really got out of hand...


Because Patrick Kicken was the first who had invited me over, the first Gift was from myself. I gave him a t-shirt of one of my sponsors, the AM-radiostation 'Q The Beat' rn. Of course this was quit hilarious, because all radiostations in Holland rncompete with each other! The t-shirt is now hanging on the wall of the rn3FM-studio. Haha!


UPDATE: Q The Beat AM radio signed bankruptcy rnwithin 4 months.
When the show ended Patrick brought me back to the hotel where I had a greatrnbacon and egg breakfast and than fell asleep again untill checkout time rnat 11 am...
My first host Patrick Kicken had to think of a Gift that I would give to the next host and he took a glass frame off the wall with a unique picture of U2 rnin it. 
Didn't I say the Gift was about a little personal thing? Well, it was very personal to him and therefor I accepted the big glass frame and I will have to carry it with me to my next address on May 2: Amsterdam!

PS: The following report carries "?id=6" in the web URL of your browser. The forward button might not always work in the first few weeks, due to the start of the database at that time.

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