2/22/98- Wow, a while for me…I’m used to looking back at these at the end of each year, not nearly 3 years later. Still pretty clear though; I was in England on tour with Yes and took part of a day off to visit with my friends Tommy and Patrick at the Mill, a recording studio outside London. I so very rarely wander away from a tour when there is still work to be done as I have a fear of missing the show or being late. This was one of those successful trips that you didn’t know exactly where you were going and how you would get back, but I didn’t care and had a lovely time catching up with my mates. Thanks, guys!

2/23/98- A fragment of a thought after eating dinner alone in Manchester, actually probably while waiting for the entree as this is when most fragments are delivered to me, while someone else is supposed to be delivering something else to me. A bit judgmental of the perfectly fine folks of the North of England, but the image of a divot on their heads still cracks me up.

3/19/98- Not entirely clear, but a bus life affirmation with a touch of good self worth is rare enough that it deems mentioning.

3/25/98- My first time in Poland, waking up on a bumpy road on an overnight trip into Warsaw, just observing and feeling the nature of the country of my forefathers. My only other experiences with the “East” have been the former eastern Germany and wandering down to the Czech Republic and Hungary. I’ve never been to Russia. Both old and new, it was remarkable to see the juxtaposition of life hundreds of years ago next to an Ikea and a McDonalds. The image of the bootprint may have been something I saw, but more likely is something I felt.

4/5/98- Yowsers! Fellow road people, ever been here before? The first image is a actual experience with a memory of the late Richard Tee in a parking lot in Glasgow, Scotland where he dressed for the show in a kilt…Black Watch indeed…while crossing the same parking lot 7 years later, the memory/ ghost paraded past me and gave me comfort.
I have always gone through periods of not being interested in exploring the foreign area on work trips, either tired, depressed, over or underwhelmed, I choose to stay in. But there is some part of me that remembers this day, me dragging myself up by the bootstraps after writing this and going out, not finding anything open and getting caught in the rain. Sometimes your first instincts are your best ones…

4/22/98- “Bitterman, party of one, your table is ready…” A purge.

4/22/98 #2- A tribute to Octavio Paz, who I found out that day had passed away. A remarkable poet, his books on poetry and writing have given me so many things to think about.

5/6/98- I think I had already decided that I wanted to marry Angela. This is one clockmakers’s thoughts.

5/13/98- I love to write in Rio. I always write in Rio. It lends itself to being written about. The last two sections need a little explaining. A local girl who was working on the shows with us had a thing for one of the guys on our tour. She came to me to ask what I thought. My mind had been juggling the Angela marriage thing 24 hours a day for over a week and my attitude was ” put it out there and see; if it is meant to be, fine, and if it isn’t, perhaps you’ll cry and then you can get on with your life tomorrow…” He turned her down flat. She cried. She got over it. The last paragraph becomes more of a rhythmic exercise, perhaps English struggling to be Portuguese.

5/15/98- Too much time, missing my love, knowing that I’ll see her soon in Mexico and that I intend to propose. B.A. is still a pretty remarkable city.

9/19/98- Time passes. Since I last wrote, I’m engaged and I’ve moved to Texas. That day we had seen the Lalique exibit at the DMA and heard some remarkable history from an older gentleman from the Dallas area. Watching Angela sleep gives me a rush of gratitude and a prod towards a pen.

10/9/98- Japan and the view from the hotel coffee shop…does it every time!

10/9/98 #2-Just a few thoughts from an American overseas on the disemboweling of Bill Clinton that was taking place at that time.