Keepin’ the Faith . . .


Happy Friday, All!

And appropriately so, T.G.I.F.!

It’s been like a whirlwind on this journey across Europe visiting a few countries.  It’s been like walking on a tightrope and enjoying the scenery from a precarious view!  As I stated in the past few e-mails, I am working from a “tight budget” … and it is okay because I do not live extravagantly!  I still find myself counting on a few good friends to get me out of a tight spot or two … and I continue to keep the faith.  Traveling and booking flights and places to stay requires budgeting and meticulousness.  While I try to do all of those, somehow, things get a little “screwed” up and we never have as much as we thought we would … and the bills and costs of things are always more than we anticipated!  I am there right now!  I’ve reached out to some folks and hope they come through again!

On the “real” side, after visiting Paris for a few days I need to decide if I will stay in Spain a little longer or travel back to the USA with thoughts of plan B – retiring in Ecuador or Costa Rica!  It has been wonderful seeing the countries I have visited.  Of course, the costs vary a little in each one.  Yet, here in Amsterdam, I have experienced a higher cost of living than anywhere else!  I have had to spend more … just to get by … than anywhere else.  Still, I have been gifted a boat tour on the canals that run about 15 Euro per person!  A friend here in Amsterdam of a friend of a friend in Ft. Lauderdale invited me yesterday … it was a little challenging and timely meeting up … but it finally worked out.  I arrived at the boat exactly at the time it was scheduled to leave … the friend of a friend of a friend was looking for me as she sat on the boat entertaining the hope that I would arrive before the boat departed.  I did!  It was wonderful.  She is a yoga teacher in Amsterdam, married and she and her husband own one of the houses along the canals that is actually a “house boat”!  She mentioned that water and plumbing, electricity and other essentials are linked to the city of Amsterdam’s systems of the aforementioned.  We actually passed the houseboat while cruising down a canal and her husband was in the window of the living room awaiting our arrival!  We all shouted from the electric boat that we were on and he waved back.  They appear to be amongst the “socialites” here in Amsterdam!  I was fortunate, had a great time, came back to the hostel and listened to some music on “Spotify” until falling asleep.

If everything goes well, I will meet up with a guy from White Plains who attended the high school there when I taught.  He apparently lives in Germany not too far from Amsterdam, and we may have coffee or lunch once they arrive at the hostel where I am staying.  All along the way, I keep the faith that ” … every little thing will be alright!”  What else can one do?!

So … in closing this Friday message, I invite you to join in with me in “keepin’ the faith” in whatever you do … and of course, “Do the Right Thing”!

Have a great weekend!


John I. Cook, Director

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