Volkssport Travel

Hiking Down White Hill in TurkeyVolkssporting is the international noncompetitive sport of hiking, swimming, cross-country skiing, and cycling; everyone is a winner and receives some sort of award when the activity is completed. As the Past National President of the American Volkssport Association and Past American Liaison to the International Federation of Popular Sports, I’ve enjoyed traveling across the United States and throughout the world participating in these social events. I’ve met great people, seen magnificent locations and tasted the finest of local delicacies. Why don’t you tell our community which events you’ve found to be the scariest, loveliest, highest, wettest, most southern, most northern, friendliest, easiest, hardest, most well attended event, least attended event, having the neatest award, cheapest award, etc.? What is the most interesting custom you’ve seen in foreign lands? In general, let’s talk about what you found interesting in volkssporting (or just plain walking in your neighborhood).

Let’s talk about the places you’ve visited. If you want to comment about my travels–that’s okay. I’ve walked the Great Wall of China; visited Ground Zero in Nagasaki (and New York); took the subway in St. Petersburg; saw the Northern Lights at the edge of the Bering Sea (in winter); touched the southernmost landfall in South America; danced the tango in Buenos Aires; sang Molly Malone in an Irish pub; ate fish and chips in London; hiked the Alps, watched the southern sky in the Outback of Australia, sailed down the Yangtze River; shot a blowgun in the Amazon forests; and have had more adventures than I can remember. I have a lifetime of experiences and enjoy discussing them. How about you? Which experiences thrilled  you the most?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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8 thoughts on “Volkssport Travel

  1. When I was sailing on the Yangtze, our Chinese hosts treated us to drinks. The only problem was, they were washing the glasses in the river. I felt odd having to say sorry, but I wasn’t thirsty. (I remember ruining a Mexican vacation by Montezuma’s Revenge.) I didn’t want that to happen again. I gained their friendship though by showing them pictures of my newest grandson and since he was as fat as could be I referred to him as my Buddha. They couldn’t stop laughing. On this trip I carried with me a note in Chinese which told any cab driver where to take me should I get lost. It came in handy.

  2. I was wondering if you would like to come to one of our meetings and give a 10 minute talk on a subject of your choice. We meet in Annapolis at tha Library on West street.
    Also I am planning to go on the Band of Brothers trip to the 70th Anniversary of Normandy from 6/3 – /6/13 2014.
    Bob

    • Robert
      I’d be happy to attend one of your meetings. Just give me the dates and times when you meet and I’ll check my schedule. If you go on that Band of Brothers trip, I hope you will take my offer to post something about your trip and the men you find there on this blog. The 70th anniversary of Normandy–WOW. How time fly’s. It was only a few years after that, when I joined the Air Force.
      Julian

  3. Hi Julian, It was nice to read your blog site with so many different topics. Dennis and I were supposed to go with you on that Turkey trip but a car accident for me on 9/11 stopped us from going. It was always on my bucket list and a few years ago we were fortunate to do a tour of Turkey. Such an interesting country.
    It is good to hear from you., Sandy

    • Sandy (and Dennis)
      Thanks for the kind words. I remember when Dennis and I took a trip through Belgium. Every town we stopped in seemed to have its own brewery. Naturally, we tried the local beer everywhere and found that they even had their own glasses. It would have been too much to gather the glasses to bring them back home, but they would have made great souvenirs. I never tasted better beer until a world-wide gathering of volkssport leaders in Slovakia. That beer was not only the best, but the cheapest, perhaps because they grew the hops there. Even those people who never buy would buy there because the beer was so cheap. I think Tom Mosely was with me then. He always bought. I think he had his passport stolen on that trip.
      Julian

  4. One of my most memorable volkssport year round events was in November 2004. Mom and dad (Preston and Liz Johnson) and I traveled to England for a wedding and some sightseeing. The year round event in London started at the Parliament Building. It just so happened that the day we were walking also happened to be the opening day of Parliament. As we walked to the start point we saw lots of cars with the flags of various international dignitaries and a few soldiers with machine guns. We got to the Parliament buildings just in time to join the crowds on the street waiting for the queen. First came carriages with her crown and scepter. I was able to capture a photo of Queen Elizabeth waving at us. We continued on our walk and saw a crowd at Buckingham Palace. Yeah, we’re in time for the changing of the guards! Nope, just missed it, we’re waiting for the queen to return – so we hung around and saw her a second time. Our B&B host was quite impressed that we saw her, not once, but twice.

    • Alisa
      Your mention of soldiers with machine guns reminded me of the time in South America in a desolate spot where we saw a soldier with an automatic weapon on a small bridge guarding the alligators or crocodiles (I can never remember which is which) in the steam below. It was so unusual because we had not seen a single soul for hours, but I guess there were poachers about. Say hello to your parents.
      Julian

  5. WOW! I have done some of these things, but not all. However I am six years younger than you and hope there’s still time, energy, and opportunity for me. How fortunate we all are.
    While in Istanbul my girlfriend and I went to the oldest bathhouse in the city
    for a massage and bath. An amazing experience! First we layed on hot stones (not too hot) , were then scrubbed like never before, finished off with a massage, and then washed again. Wish we had a bathhouse like that in Chicago .