10 Prediction Results from Europe

15 Oct

DSCN0826Before we left for our trip, we came up with 10 predictions for how the trip would go. Would we make it to four museums in Paris? Would we climb the Eiffel Tower? Would I say “When in Rome?” more than 20 times? Would we talk about Scooby too much, etc. Here’s the recap with each of our predictions and an explanation of what actually happened. My pigeon friends and I are excited to share the outcomes with you.

1. We will have so much trouble communicating that we abandon the activity we’re trying to do.


Zack’s Guess: Almost, but we’ll prevail.

Caitlin’s Guess: Gotta piggyback Zack here, because I think together we will conquer whatever we set out to do.

Result: Language couldn’t hold us back. We made it to every place we set out to go to, with only distance or lack of time holding us back. I once said “da” and “si” instead of the German “Yah*” and I learned that I’m not a beaucoup guy. I almost exclusively said “merci” in Paris, but was up to ciao and gracie and a few more choice words in Italy, like “stop it, creepy rose guy,” but we got by just fine. Even with Caitlin typing “RAPE” in the train station. There were actually two moments on the trip (I think both in Paris) where I specifically thought about this prediction, and specifically thought we’d be wrong because I was ready to throw in the towel. I’m glad I didn’t and that we prevailed.

*It’s actually spelled “Ja,” but I realize it’s probably best Zack didn’t know or he’d have been in Reggaesville the entire time we were in Germany.

2. We will only visit two of the four+ museums on our list in Paris.


Zack’s Guess: We’ll make 3-4 museums.

Caitlin’s Guess: I’ll say we make it to 3 museums.

Result: So much for that. As I said in the 10 things we learned about each other post, Caitlin is pretty meh on museums* and we ran out of time in Paris super quickly and didn’t have time for more museums, not that we even wanted to all that much**. When we get a full week in Paris, I do hope we check out a museum at a more relaxed pace***.

*Though that’s not at all why we didn’t hit the last two on our list for Paris. I really, really wanted to hit up the d’Orsay and Rodin, but we simply didn’t have the time because of the bike tour we did instead.


***We better! I missed out on my favorite van Gogh’s and some beautiful gardens. I won’t let it happen again.

3. Paris will be our favorite city.


Zack’s Guess: Berlin or 5-way tie

Caitlin’s Guess: I LOVE that Zack thinks he’ll walk away calling Berlin his favorite. I’m going to say Paris will be mine, but would be more than happy with a surprise 5-way tie or any other city knocking me off my feet.

Result: While we adored Paris, we couldn’t wrap our heads around it in three days and had to give it an incomplete. Considering Paris gets the INC, we gave Rome #1 favorite city, Berlin and Freiburg tied for 2nd and Venice was in last. Easily last. Though I enjoyed Venice far more than Zack did, I do agree with the rankings we ultimately gave the cities. Rome coming in first, even after the disastrous beginning we had there, was a surprise to me until I started to dissect it. A place with tons of incredible history that is easy to navigate and has world-class gelato…yeah OK that sounds like heaven.

4. We won’t go swimming during the entire trip.

swiminZack’s Guess: We won’t swim.

Caitlin’s Guess: We will go swimming once, somewhere.

Result: We didn’t even come close to swimming. We never came across a body of water that was anywhere close to safe to swim in. The water was nice to look at, but swimming was never a consideration. Our Paris tour guide told us how incredibly unsafe the Seine is to swim in, but how his buddy dove in naked and drunk on his 30th birthday and got a terrific picture of it. I kinda wanted to. I think I said we’d swim in hopes that it’d inspire us to take a literal plunge somewhere, but particularly with the weather being as nasty as it was for so much of the trip, it just wasn’t a priority to track down a pool for the heck of it. Someday, I will swim on you, vacation.

5. We will have ice cream (at least) once a day.


Zack’s Guess: Dessert every day: yes. Ice cream every day: no.

Caitlin’s Guess: I will have ice cream every day. Zack will have dessert every day.

Result: We started off without finding ice cream on day one and had to settle for Toffeefe* and gummy bears and the ice cream every day was in real jeopardy. It proved difficult to get our hands on the cold stuff every day in Germany**, but we made up for it in Venice and Rome and with the help of some two a days in the boot-shaped country we averaged one a day. In other words, it was Caitlin’s dream come true. Can we go back and continue to have ice cream, please? (That being said, in France you should make sure your indulgences lean more toward chocolate and caramels because unnnnnghhhhh.)


**After that first day, I was able to snag some ice cream post-bike ride, and then I’m fairly certain I had it both days in Freiburg — yep, I think that first Berlin day was my only miss. Except for Paris, where I just had chocolate all the time.

6. We will climb the stairs of the Eiffel Tower to the top.


Zack’s prediction: We climb to the top.

Caitlin’s prediction: Put on your mountain shoes, we’re makin’ the ascent!

Result: We super climbed it. We’re going to write a full post just about this later this week, but the climb up the Eiffel Tower was a total highlight of the trip. I happen to love climbing stairs and great views, so this really hit the spot. In retrospect and through rose-colored glasses, I really enjoyed this. I’m glad we did it and, quite frankly, I’d do it again.

7. Zack will, despite his deepest desires to do so, NOT ever check on his Fantasy Football team.


Zack’s Prediction: Someone may text him info, but he will not seek it out.

Caitlin’s Prediction: I like that Zack’s prediction is written very biblically, so I’ll follow suit:  He may have trouble, but He will maintain the strength of will and mighty patience to Unpluggeth from The Internet.

Result: HA! We left on Friday morning. I didn’t make it through Sunday. When we got back to our hotel after dinner Sunday night, there was free Internet in the lobby. Caitlin reluctantly agreed to 10 minutes of Internet time and of course it was the first thing I checked. I even woke up in the middle of the night in Berlin to see if I’d beaten my nemesis. I also let Caitlin know that my team beat hers which she was thrilled about. I checked my team every week and even watched two episodes of “Breaking Bad.” I need a less exciting Internet time to unplug from than the end of “Breaking Bad” and beginning of fantasy season. Sowwy. For my protection and the protection of others, I choose not to comment.

8. Zack will say “When in Rome” more than 20 times … when in Rome.

Zack’s Prediction: Over, duh.

Caitlin’s Prediction: Obviously over. I think the REAL challenge is whether or not Zack will say “when in Rome” more than he will say “Sortaaaaaayyyyy,” because we’ll be back in the world of “Sortie” signs in Paris…

Result: Believe it or not, we estimated I said it about 18 times so it was slightly under*. Once we arrived in Rome and I had to use my international minutes, I said ” I don’t like paying extra for roaming but when in Rome…ing.” Sigh. I’d have an ice cream or beer in the name of “When in Rome” but it really felt like a stretch most of the time I said it, so I stopped saying it as often.

*I’m not sure if I believe our estimation, though. It was definitely said a LOT, and I think more than “Sortie.”

9. We will talk about Scooby more than 20 times over the course of the trip.


Zack’s Prediction: WAY over.

Caitlin’s Prediction: Overrrrrr.

Result: Please. 20 a day would have been a challenge. This was a silly number. We missed the poop out of our little guy and talked about him constantly. It didn’t help that there were dogs everywhere and none of them were nearly as cute as our Scoobs. And seeing this sign all the time in Paris didn’t help. I loved the dogs everywhere and little reminders of our boy, and my mom did an excellent job of sending us photos to keep us sated. Multiple times a day, I’d ask if Zack had any new texts from my mom about our Scoobs. Now she misses who she calls “such a baby” (in a good way). I can relate to that feeling.

10. We will actually, finally, have a relaxing vacation.


Zack’s Prediction: Our most relaxing vacation to date, but still an adventure.

Caitlin’s Prediction: The most relaxing vacation we’ve ever haaaad, but definitely still a whirlwind of activity.

Result: It was an adventure where we rarely sat back and smelled the flowers, but we agreed that the Venice leg was easily our most relaxing three days of vacation ever. Even if it was sandwiched between a wonderfully hectic jaunt through Germany and Paris and Rome*. As the trip wound down and we once again acknowledged that we tried to do too much in one trip, we decided we were scouting out our future vacations. Paris 2016, here we come.

*Even Rome was a little more relaxing (after we got settled).


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