Eastern Europe: Tapestry of Resilience


I created 104 journal pages.

We’re going to be gone for 48 days.

We will be staying in 14 cities.

We will be visiting 8 countries.

We leave on Friday.


104 journal pages

104 painted journal pages

South American trip, Southwestern USA trip, current trip (just waiting for an embellishment to grace the cover).

Creating a journal for this trip has been a highlight and a labor of love. I started working on it about four months ago, tearing watercolor paper into 9-1/2 x 11 inch pieces, gessoing the front and backs, and then painting the pages in a variety of colors. By doing this Herculean task in advance, all I need to take on the trip in the way of art supplies is a pair of scissors, a jar of gel medium, a paintbrush, and Uniball pens in red, white, and black. Presto – instant art studio. At the end of each day I will glue in the ephemera I collected, and write little notes and summaries about what we did.

The Trip

We try and take a big trip every two years. Last year would have been our year, but the stars didn’t align for us to be able to plan to get away in the fall. When January of this year rolled around, we started dreaming and scheming and settled on eastern (central) Europe. We worked with a travel agency to help with the planning, and that proved to be a great decision. They worked out all of the details to get us from one place to the next, and gave us limited choices of where we would stay. We’ll have an initiation city tour the first morning of every city where we stay, and then we’re on our own (We’re starting in Dubrovnik, Croatia and working our way north, east, west, and continually north, ending in Berlin). You know we’ve got some good stuff planned – on the beaten track, and definitely off the beaten path. Can you say Sniper Alley? Thank you Atlas Obscura.

The Packing

We’re trying to pack light and compact, each of us taking one medium suitcase and a carry on backpack/messenger bag. For those who know us, packing light isn’t our thing. But probably one of the most important decisions, is what books to take. These are the two main ones I chose (thanks to Joni, who recommended The Art of Fielding).

Getting Out of the House

Howard is busily working late into the night thanks to a one day trial that was supposed to be over last Thursday, but turned into a 4-1/2 day trial and concludes tomorrow. His three days to get work wrapped up and ready for him to leave, dwindled down to just tonight and half of tomorrow. But some of it will all get done.

Tomorrow is my hair day, a three-hour ordeal, plus several more errands . . . and maybe one final trip to our downtown bookstore. Today I met with my friend Jami, who will be house sitting for us and keeping company with our six-toed cat while we are away. So many details to attend to.

Friday morning we will be picked up by Sam and Stewart and escorted to Portland. We’ll treat them to lunch, and they will deposit us at the Portland Airport. And it begins.

Deluxe taxi service from Sam and Stewart in 2015.

Deluxe taxi service from Sam and Stewart in 2015.


NOTE: I won’t be blogging during our trip as I sometimes have in the past, it is just too time consuming. But I will be posting on my Facebook and Instagram pages, so if you’re interested, follow along.

Facebook: Dayna Davidson Collins

Instagram: DaynaLovesArt


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