We’ve always considered ourselves lucky to be able to plan when and where we travel. But the wheel turns, and sometimes life intervenes with other obligations and priorities. And 2019 was such a year.
But we did manage to squeeze in a few fun trips, and it’s Valentine’s Day and time for the annual Gallivance Hunt for Hearts.
A month-long, counterclockwise train journey around the UK, four weeks camping in the American west, and a quick hop to Vegas Baby proved, once again, that hearts abound … if you just know where to look. Enjoy.
Every year we scratch our heads on the origin of this ubiquitous heart shape, and one discovery got us a bit closer to the answer.
In his book The Body: A Guide for Occupants, Bill Bryson says,
“The heart looks nothing like the traditional symbol associated with Valentine’s Day and lovers’ initials carved in tree trunks and the like. (That symbol first appeared, as if from out of nowhere, in paintings from Northern Italy in the early fourteenth century, but no one knows what inspired it.)”
Liverpool, England has much to offer, but one reason visitors flock here is because it’s the birthplace of The Beatles. And after a ride down the leafy “Penny Lane” and up to the walls surrounding “Strawberry Fields” it came as no surprise that the ruby red gate had a stylized heart pattern.
The Mesa Verde area in southwestern Colorado is a wild and natural place, and the Ancestral Puebloans didn’t use romanticized heart shapes in their petroglyphs. But that didn’t stop the National Park Visitors’ Center from trying to make a few bucks selling glossy hard rock hearts – there must be a country song title there somewhere.
It’s hard to believe, but this is our eighth year of Hunting for Hearts Around the World. So wherever you are, hug your sweetie and have a fun day!
Happy Valentine’s Day,
James & Terri