planning

day 32. -= 07.08.07 =-

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it's been 768 hours since i departed and it's time for a bit of reflection.

first and foremost, it's been grueling.

zoom zoom in the taxi there are many ways to think of the situation. first, one can view this as work and prepare everyday with a schedule of productivity and think that you can accomplish what needs to be done. then once you start traveling, you start to realize that all those things are hog wash....

on the other hand, now that i've started this journey. i can quickly see how this trip can quickly turn into a whole nother realm. honestly, backpackers and fellow global travelers have some really funny stories to tell. but it's better creating those stories, than actually retelling someone else's. ;) AND that's a whole nother story all together!

...before coming to istanbul, i pushed my self hard to be the man of many feats. between interviews and late night conversations, i found my self blowing quite a few mental flat tires. needless to say, that's why i haven't uploaded an interview in a week... i needed a break from both...

since the meal to end all meals, i have tried diligently to reflect on the past month, and honestly there are thousands of stories that flow once . actually, there are thousands of words to describe every second that passes. i've been torn on how to lump it all in....

it also helps that i'm at a hostel and have been wetting my chops to impress the english speaking women... but that's not the point of this self reflection... speaking of self reflection, i've lost a few inches around the waist and my shoulders and back are taught as steel. (are you listing ladies?)

as i gear up for my next round of travels, i recognize productivity comes from being able to sit someplace quite and a working electrical outlet. then again, i've been thinking of ways to tell this story via video, but without having to go through so many interviews. maybe this is where i scream and ask for a producer, editor, and camera person...

burds. being consistently creative is demanding. trying to be creative while depleting every mental, physical and emotional reserve is pointless.

during this contemplation period, i've been thinking about how to tell my story. just two nights ago, i realized that i have a wealth of on the road stories. shortly before the teeth get longer, or the faces get uglier, the mountains taller and the rivers wider...

...before all of that, i want to think of a ways to preserve the morsel of truth and honesty. i want to tell my story before it gets lost in the mundane of the world's bitching and moaning. more importantly, i want to tell you my story before i forget. i want to tell you a story that will not lead me to edit a 30 min interview into seven minuets.

so, how do i accomplish this?

flying higher than an eagle for the next few weeks, i have four goals...
1. make, my stop overs longer. i'm estimating a week in each location.
2. more on the ground research into the areas and communities i visit.
3. relax and get 8 hours of proper sleep.
4. write more.

why seven topics...

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20070528.jpg This is a 21st century journey to the intersection of digital and organic communities. Communicating through a digital medium that has no borders, I want to share with you how this new world interacts.

Free culture. After a half-century of broadcast communications dictating the common perspective, people are now reconnecting—one-on-one, peer-to-peer, node-to-node—and proving that traditional copyright and patent restrictions need to be reformed to promote creativity.

Free and open-source software. Software should be a tool, like a shovel. With zero distribution cost, global, boundless open-source communities are competing in a world of co-opetition.

Couchsurfers and bloggers. People—from those who blog their souls to those who reserve their couch for strangers—are using technology to augment real-world relationships and bring modernism back to our post-modern world.

Barcamps, unconferences, meetups, and coworking. The online digi-world uses physical ad-hoc meetings to socialize, share, and advance ideas.

Agents of progressive social change. Inventors and concept peddlers—though not always leaders—change the way we think about the world through technology.

The environment. When we outsource jobs, we outsource pollution, waste, and other negative impacts of consumerism; we need to continue to use technology to educate the public on the true footprint of the products we use and lifestyles we choose.

Happenstance. Receiving a random e-mail, discovering a flickr profile, stumble-surfing across a facebook page, connecting in a café—the world grows smaller with every person we meet, and there is an art to discovering their stories.”

photo by charles hope

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t minus 11 days - transcendence

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with 11 days to go, there are many things that i'm trying to figure out. thankfully, i am now sleeping knowing that these issues are logistical.

the last 24 hours completely burned me out. after spending the day talking to my self and drinking too much coffee, i met up with whurley. on the ride from the Roosevelt hotel to a web 2.0 social networking session / social media club at some "bridge and tunnel" bar, we delved deep into a quick recap of the iphone press. after walking through the doors of the social networking meetup, my friend's smiles indicated i was soon to be pimped.

on a an empty stomach, i repeated the same statement over and over and over.... seven...seven...seven...seven... despite that everyone loved the idea, every time i described the next seven months, my heart skipped a beat. from handshake to handshake, i was scared. impressively, i was not the only scared individual. once i laid out my plan, people freaked. i kinda wanted to say, "it's a ok, i freaked out too.."

instead, they would look at me with big doe eyes and ask how, why, route, etc... by the end of the night, i was ready to depart. i now can only imagine what it's like running for office and run from 0-60 all evening long.

day 2 at the apple storeafterward whurley, grace, charles and i chucked incessantly that our new iPhone homeboy, greg packer is that guy who stands in line for everything. from bill clinton to the pope, from new york times to associated press, greg is the that guy who strives to be the first. he was quoted frequently enough to be banned from the associated press.

after dinner, whurley and i jetted to meetup with the iPhone boys. upon arrival, we discovered a three more in line. david clayman, aka mr taproot, told us that a well respected newspaper reporter went out of his way to exclude mr first in line. i cringed at the prospect that a reporter has the gaul to say that the man who stands inline for everything is not part of the story. this reporter even went out of his way to exclude greg from photos.

it's really funny to think that before today, greg was an urban legend. from first in line to front page story, he's that guy who has stood the test of time. if i had the time, i would spend my last days documenting his life, friends, support network, and stories. i can't even begin to fathom the hours spent in line holding a sign saying, "i'm that guy!"

deep down inside, i feel for the guy. i wish i had the time to see how his story will last the test of time. i wonder about all the other gregs who have stood the test of time looking to be first? i wonder, how many gregs stand in line and are no worse for wear.

btw, this week, these are the last things that i have to complete.
* check out moshe's storage building next to the navy yard
* aquire containers that are lockable, waterproof, and airtight. when i last lived over by the navy yard, i was introduced to the world world's most traversed freeway. sealing is healing!
* find airline ticket
* pack room and clear out my bedroom
* despite my last post of packing too much, there are a few things that i need to clean out.
- i need to get a pack lock that allows me to wrap my bag and leave it in a coffee shop without fear of someone walking away.
- poncho
- emergency mirror
* transfer utility bills to my roommate
* list motorcycle on craigslist
* promote saturday's 07/07/07 departure brunch (which everyone is invited)
* make final appointment for shots

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veterans history project and their field kit

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1978 October XX, Sheppard AFB TX, Marlyna and Noel A. Hidalgo - the AF gave me a baby pictured to the left is my mother, marlyna, posing with me in october of 1978. i was five months old. she was just entering the united states air force for what would turn out to be 25 years of service. last year, when she retired as a lieutenant colonel from the united states air force reserves, she out ranked my father. my mother has always been a true patriot.

when i last visited my parents, my loving mother showered me with gifts. from powerbars, books on leadership, to a small guide book from the library of congress, her love was tireless.

contained within this little book is a simple guide for interviewing veterans for the veterans history project. packed within it's pages are documentarian's dream. paid by the american tax dollar, you can easily cut and paste their simple guidelines, sample releases, audio and video recording log, photo log, and manuscript data sheet into any project you would like. check out their website for PDF versions. also, if you know of any pearl harbor survivors, you should also check out the pearl harbor survivors project.

while i may not always agree with american foreign policy, i will never forget that the men and women that serve our country are no different that any family i see walking down the street or having a bqq. as i once prayed that my parents would return home soon, i pray that our warriors can return to their families safe and sound.


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seven weeks to go!

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ten days ago, i sent out an email to my donors asking for help.
nine days ago, i sent out an email to my address book asking for help.
eight days ago, i email all of my lists and ensured proper messaging on all of the social networking sites.
within that time, you answered the call and raised total donations to $2678.12!!!
THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!

seven days ago, i dusted off a camera and headed out to the humble abode of House 2.0 for jelly nyc. jelly nyc is unique member of the coworking family. coined by House 2.0 residents, amit and luke, while working out from home. the two wanted external stimuli and desired to meet new and interesting people. so, they open their doors and invited a few people in. this past week, (sadly sans luke) while in the pleasant company of strangers and friends, we chatted about our projects... in a stroke of magic, a new york times reporter came by to figure out the world of coworking and more importantly the humble side of Jelly. after a few good hours of productivity and several conversations that created a warm happy feeling, i turned on the camera and created Episode 3.

just yesterday morning, they let me know you were gone... - james tayor

as of this week, the luck of seven is now my full time job. my last consulting gig just ended. despite the fact that i don't get paid, and i'm living off of savings... i feel very good about this. there are many hard times ahead and the only way is to be fully prepared. ok, that's just a BS statement saying, "it's a lot harder finding people to interview than originally thought..." nonetheless, today i had a great interview with jamie and dan from Mayfirst/PeopleLink which should be up by monday. on sunday, i'll be out doing a few more interviews... all in all, this is turning out to be a much larger production than i ever thought.

"there were peasants singing and drummers drumming and the archer split the tree..." - neil young

next week, two friends get married. painfully, one in nyc and another in detroit.
next week, i turn a year older and get to celebrate with a bachelor party.
next week, i'll be chicago (21 - 23), detroit (24 - 27), dayton (28 - 30) and columbus (31).

if you're interested in showing me around chicago on the 21st and the 22nd. shoot me an email. i'll have camera in tow! also, if you know of a good person to interview, shoot me a line!!.

rounding out the housekeeping issues, i don't know why it took so long for me to figure out how come my site was poorly organized. i've striped out a bunch of wiki junk. now there is a new and improved itinerary and equipment listing. if you know of anyone, any product or project that can help. don't hesitate to contact me...

ps - special announcement on monday!!!

cheers!
noel

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two months to go...

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Dear Friends,

Today, marks a very special day, not only has Luck of Seven crossed the 20% goal in fundraising, but in two short months, I will depart from my beloved city of New York to explore this planet. On 7 July 2007, and traveling for seven months, my feet will wander the earth contemplating seven topics of freedom. On the way, I'll be documenting the experience on the "Luck of Seven" travel site (Lo7).

The seven topics of freedom are not some crazy manifesto, but an exploration of a world without any borders. Our ability to transcend, distance, time and culture are unprecedented. With more people living in urban environments, our world is growing and condensing at the same time. Fundamentally the seven topics of freedom boil down to four: open source communities, open source technology, social entrepreneurs and the greater conversation of global change. Ironically, a few weeks ago my mother sent me Leo Buscaglia's "The Way of the Bull." If you haven't read Mr. Buscaglia's books you will find them highly entertaining. While I instantly laughed at the outrageous cover, I found this motherly highlight, "The only thing that is certain for us is change. To battle change is to waste our time; the battle can never be won. To become the willing ally of change is to assure ourselves of life."

Now with 07/07/07 quickly approaching and my first month planned out, I look at my life and see a wealth of opportunities to explore this world. BUT I can't do it alone. I need your help in three ways...

1. A small donation of USD $11.11.

Thank you donors!! As of today, we have reached 20% of Lo7's fundraising goal! Not only will your donations help me go around the world, but in return, I promise you an autographed copy of the book. In the meantime, luckofseven.com will continue to tell the story though rich media. < http://luckofseven.com/donate >

2. Spread the word and connect me with your other friends.

There is nothing more important to me than my friends. Though my past years of traveling and countless workshops, I know that we can make this a better place. Regardless if it's just a smiling face, a pint of beer or a hard floor to sit on, I want to visit your friends and say hello. Forward your friends this message and copy me < noel(at)noneck.org >! Then, if you have a blog or social networking site, spread the word. I really need the link love ;)

3. Organizational sponsors for equipment and travel.

In Prague, Transitions Online has asked me to teach on new media journalism to former Communist countries. While "on the way," I look forward to teaching, conversing and interviewing citizens of this earth. If you know of an organization that might be a good fit, please don't hesitate to forward this email or make a formal introduction. I'm quite keen on helping organizations adapt technological frameworks for their own uses, elevate the seven topics of freedom, and share my experiences at an organizer. Otherwise, I'm looking for sponsors to acquire equipment: an HD Camcorder, a GPS device, an GSM cell phone, etc... I have a list and would love to entertain any ideas. Have your people call my people!

... and with that, I hope you place your luck on seven and at least give a donation.

be seeing you...

noneck noel


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my initial travel arrangements...

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four flights have been confirmed... i'll be departing nyc on 7/7/07 at 9pm, arrive in barcelona for a six hours. then, i'll depart for pamplona for a bit of bit of bull running. after 22 hours on the ground, i'll depart for prague to help teach a week long course and snag a few interviews...

during this leg, i'm only going to need one lovely couch and a guide around pamplona... i wonder how many couches are available?

Reservation of the flights:

Flight: IB6250
Date: Saturday, July 07, 2007
From: New York John F Kennedy International Terminal 7
Departing: 18:00
To: Barcelona Terminal B
Arriving: 9:50
Status: Confirmed

Flight: IB8404
Date: Sunday, July 08, 2007
From: Barcelona Terminal C
Departing: 14:30
To: Pamplona
Arriving: 15:25
Status: Confirmed

Flight: IB8535
Date: Monday, July 09, 2007
From: Pamplona Departing: 12:00
To: Madrid Barajas Terminal 4
Arriving: 13:05
Status: Confirmed

Flight: IB7884
Date: Monday, July 09, 2007
From: Madrid Barajas Terminal 4S
Departing: 14:45
To: Prague Ruzyne Terminal N2 Arriving: 17:40
Status: Confirmed

the computers power of suggestion

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i was composing and email and wanted to say apocalyptic, but instead got apoplectic...

"an apoplectic handbook, to the post-apoplectic world..."

i wonder if there's a new lexicon to define? linguistics through computer aided spell checking?

interesting news today

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one of the most elusive creatures on this planet is my younger brother. stuck in the middle of ohio, he's one hard fella to track down. in our post-easter convo, i've come to discover that his graduation is not in feb, it's not in jan, nor even dec. it is nov 17, conveniently located when i would be in Antarctica.

i'm still mulling over this change of course. i can still start the trip in europe. i've decided that africa is impossible to cover. unless i can find a sponsor to take me to a kenya, namibia and south africa, i might spend a majority of my time in egypt and the middle east. then on to india, nepal, thailand, vietnam, and maybe hong kong. in a weird twist, i will finally cross the equator on my way to australia and new zealand. from the land down under, i'm considering finding steerage in an aluminum tube in order not to miss my brother's graduation. after graduation and coincidentally thanksgiving, i'll start my trek ether with my brother and we'll venture south though the usa and onto central america in an idealistic quest to see the wind mills of antarctica or i will venture on my own to argentina, in a more immediate desire to make no stone unturned.

as you can guess, i love my bother very much, and since i have not graduated college. i must support my brother's desire to finish and in a more interesting twist, potentially join the military. that leaves me no other option than to bend convention...

oh, in other news, i invited 170 people to join my account on linkedin and i got 5 donations... ether people don't read the invites or they don't care, but you know who does?

thanks gang!

CS, where can i get an inexpensive global cell phone

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this is in response to a post on an CS RTW question about global mobile phones...

i too am in a similar boat. i'll be leaving on july 7th for seven months and have been looking into a communications plan that will keep me happy on all 6 populated continents. over the weekend, i dropped into my local t-mobile store to ask a very distracted man a few questions. over my shoulder stood a tall blond who was fidgeting with a sidekick and without out a doubt, i stood in the way of the t-mobile agent getting some digits.

nonetheless, i discovered that while t-mobile would be the best provider bouncing back and fro from US and Europe. there is no good single provider. t-mobile has the most inexpensive international blackberry (data) plan, but data, voice and text are comparable to cingular, the new at&t. i've heard Europeans get a better plan when they come over to the US on voice and text but not on data. to date i have no one can provide conclusive evidence.

logically, i see my self purchasing an unlocked GSM cellphone and keeping my fingers crossed or keeping my brick like treo. my other consideration is fairly expensive. in june, apple and cingular will launch the iPhone and conceptually it's the perfect device for a world traveler - GSM, WiFi, iPod with 8 gig, Address Book, 2 megapixel camera and what appears to be an SD card slot.

in the end, i've been debating the suitability of have a phone, battery, etc... but then i think of twitter and txt messages... how will i ever live what my friend heather calls the "mini postcards."

an interesting twist

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last night, during my dinner/laundry preparations i sliced open my thumb. i figured my spinach needed more dicing. carefully, i laid out the spinach on to my blue cutting board and moved the knife across the tip of my left thumb. this pain, was the warm up to news my roommate would later break.

about two hours later, my roommate comes into our apartment in her normal fashion, where she immediately falls into her bedroom. a few mins later, sabrina starts asking me about what do i plan on doing with the apartment. the verbiage while particular, was not shocking, it's how she refers to the apartment.

standing in the kitchen, separated by a skillet, she tells me that she's going to move out. when? she doesn't know. can we discuss this matter? no. she doesn't want to live with a stranger for half a year, nor does she want to go through the hassle of finding someone to live with. which i can understand, but now i'm faced with a series of questions...

  • do we both move out on july 1st? (ps - i love my apartment. i really don't want that to happen.)
  • should i ask her to move out early so i can find a roommate while turing around and subleasing my space a month or two later?
  • do i move out and have her find a replacement roommate?
  • do i sublease the entire apartment and broker a deal with the landlord?

without a doubt these are some fun questions to debate over the next few months. in the meantime, today i'm running out and purchasing a camera and a sleeping bag. tomorrow, i leave for geneva to kick around the old city before the lift conference. equipment report when i get back.

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DOH!!! How we got to $778...

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i need to increase the ticker on the right from 31 to 38 donors. for more info, read below.

We were so close... Oh-so close we were...

My father, god bless him, had been in the hospital with a UTI and something that he rarely uses the size of grapefruit. In my infinite concern for his health, I called his cell phone and left a loving and cheerful message. In my father happiness, he decided to put me over the $777.77 goal. Mind you he was medicated and his heart, which faces another ailment, has always been in the right place. This is really one of those jokes one might say, but never think could really happen.

For the past 24-hours I've been speechless, and now I wonder how to accomplish the next fundraising hurdle. Kris' matching donation would have sent me on the fast track to making this site public and therefore fundraising a good amount of the $7777 within two months.

Kris' new proposal is more intriguing than the last. Every day I have exactly seven donors, he'll make a donation also featuring the number seven. It's a ambiguously ambitious goal... One that makes, this next fundraising bout much harder.

I can only promise you that this is just the start of the interesting situations...

THANK YOU WEEKEND DONORS!!

  • Noel Hidalgo <- Thanks dad!
  • Olaf Bertram-Nothnagel
  • Veronica Dougherty
  • Hilary McHone
  • Lauren Stolzar


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take me to 777.77!

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my old friend, fellow troublemaker and bevercreek graduate, kris swanson, is willing to match US$777.77, IF i can get the donation ticker to read $777.77. with 426.68 in the kiddy, i'm only going to need 38 donations of US$11.11 to get me there. mind you thats more donors than i have now... are you ready for the challenge? ps - if it's close, can you do me the favor and peg it at 777 and shoot me a photo?

on to the follow up...


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project one - "photo a seven!"

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Starting off a travel project, based on the number 7 is not the easiest thing. Add an ask for money, and people want something back. Just like my old scooter friends, it's easier to ask them for a dollar before I jump off a cliff then it is after. HEY and if you guys are reading this, I will not jump off a cliff again... Or when I say "cliff" do I mean the mechanical horse on Ave A and First Street... If you are really interested, you'll find the true meaning.

So with that Mr. Rodgers into, let's get down to the nitty gritty. My buddy, Amit Gupta has a really cool project, PhotoJojo "we find the best photo shiz anywhere." Since it's inception, every two weeks, Amit really does find really cool stuff! It's the best!

Man behind the 7 What does that have to do with 777? Easy, I want your photos! If you are on flickr, start taggin your photos with "luck of seven" and "777". Don't forget to join the luck of seven group! If you have original art work, and wanna share that too... by all means, let's get those sevens rollin!

As for facebook, myspace, and last.fm, upload your photos to the forum under this post. If you can chose your type of copy protection, please consider using Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 By Wednesday, we'll see who's got the bacon bits! If you like a photo, please vote with your keyboard!

PS - I heart whurley! photo in post, is by whurley.

soft launch

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thank you!!!
first, i'd like to thank yesterday's donors!

if you haven't donated, push me over the top...

let's network
now it's on to promotion, instead of sending out a blast email, i'm teasing the water though my social networks. last year, as an april fools joke, i threw out oralpixation as a global photo project. (don't worry, we'll do it again.) since rootscamp dc, facebook has been on fire... and what's my bread and butter? networking. so why not start off small?

over the past year, i saw some press about a photo book started on a flickr group. through my research, no travel book has started on a social networking site. (please correct me if wrong.) so let's make history!

ps - this post is powered by KISS' Detroit Rock City.

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on the luck of seven was an open-source, around the world project by noel hidalgo, a new york city based activist, organizer, barcamper and coworker.

for seven months, he traversed the globe. using a new media voodo (blog, vlog, wiki, flickr, couchsurfing, twitter, myspace, dopplr, and facebook), noneck harnessed the collective knowledge of the internet, and report on seven topics of freedom. this trip was funded by 253 people and supported, house, fed, and loved by countless others.

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