I was a primary teacher in a K-12 alternative school. In 2006, I took a leave for four months, travelling through Central America. I visited schools and studied Spanish along with being a tourist. My class followed my travels through this blog. I have continued to use this blog to keep friends, family and my students connected to my travels, recently in Mexico and now Kenya!
I am now retired and my husband and I hope to do even more traveling! I am volunteering in an after-school program on the Indian reservation where we live and at the local art museum along with gardening, kayaking, biking, and cooking....We spent a month in Argentina in the winter of 2009.
We are now ready to depart on a trip to Italy. We hope to spend a month or so seeing Rome, Venice, Florence, Cinque Terre and the area around Naples.
We are going back to Italy this fall, hoping to see more of the smaller towns and villages.
We spent three weeks in the Yucatan, and then took a road trip to California and back.
A trip to Japan to see my brother and do some biking...a road trip through the Southwest...and a visit to the Mexican state of Oaxaca!
March 8th 2014
I never really appreciated the aptness of the snow bird term used to describe those who head south from the snowy and cold northern states and provinces until now... the Canadians here are beginning to stir..to become agitated and restless...a few are breaking away early and heading north this week...many more to follow. These little towns will be deserted soon... We took the bus to San Pancho on Wednesday. It is a very sweet little town about 20 minutes south of here. In the 1970's, a former President of Mexico tried to make it into a model village, building a hospital and schools, planting many trees. Sadly, his corruption caught up with him and he had to escape the country, taking his money (well, the Mexican peoples' money) with him....so the town is not the self-sufficient ... read more
March 5th 2014
So sorry...hit the wrong key and somehow published this when it wasn't done! Final draft later in the week!... read more
March 2nd 2014
We had to leave PV a day early, since they mistakenly told us we had a room for Saturday night at our hotel...so... We packed, did some shopping, said goodbye to Susan, and found a cab willing to drive us to Lo de Marcos for $50 (an hour and a half drive)...the cabbie we hired had never been this far north before...! Our camera died that morning too, so I am using the Nexus for photos, which is hard because the camera is on the screen side with no view finder, so I have to guess what I'm photographing... We found our hotel (our second choice, since we had not heard not heard from our first, the Caracol). We were checked in by a meth addict-looking young man, and our room, while full of sunlight (you ... read more
February 27th 2014
Our six hour bus ride here passed quickly..lot's of room on the bus....only $40 for the two of us in first class... We arrived right in the old part of PV, where our hotel is located, and found the place quickly, after asking for directions once. It's part of a very large hotel complex, but the Dona Susana is small and older, and on a dead-end street.... An old friend from my Paris days is staying here too. We have been traveling to the same places for years, but never at exactly the same time...so we are spending time together for the first time in over 35 years! PV can only be described as over-the-top....crowds everywhere, with a mix of young/old, gay/straight...and everything in between. Few Mexicans....It's a big city, but the only interesting part is ... read more
February 25th 2014
We had a pleasant taxi ride to Manzanillo from Cuyutlan...it's very close geographically, but there is no direct road along the coast. You have go south, inland and then north again. Our hotel is full of Canadians, which is no surprise...they've locked up this area! The beach is white sand, and the water quite calm...no undertow, so you can swim as far as you like. But when I ran on the beach this am, there was a wide band of trash at the hightide line and more in the water. However, I didn't see any body parts, medical waste, or poop, so I decided I would still go swimming this afternoon. Surprisingly, the beach was almost completely clean, and the water clear too! We are right on the entrance to Mexico's biggest port, and there is ... read more
February 24th 2014
We are leaving here today, and have really enjoyed our stay here. When we arrived, the bombed out look of the outskirts of town, the disrepair of the hotel, and the shacks (seafood stands) crowding the beach made us think we'd made a mistake... But the quiet charm of the place quickly grew on us, and it was great fun being in the middle of Mexican weekenders....lots of families, no bad behavior (including the quietest Harley guys we've ever not heard...). We spent all of Sunday under the umbrellas on the beach, having things brought to us (freshly made tapioca pudding, beers, guacamole, hats, jewelry, hammocks, pistachios) but no pushy vendors... Lots of playing the surf, watching the life guards rescue guys who went past the breakers, and card playing. The Mexican families rented small swimming ... read more
February 21st 2014
We've decide to stay here longer, since we're getting into the rhythm of days here: a run on the beach, breakfast and on-line time (since it takes an hour to get breakfast here), some sort of sightseeing, swimming, beers and quesadillas on the beach, more swimming, showers, card playing on the patio, nap, and dinner... Today we visited the Salt Museum (no one there, not even running the gift shop, but everything open...) and took a boat tour of the estuary by the turtle center. Since the walk back yesterday was not one we wanted to repeat, we had planned to take a taxi there, and get the driver's phone number so we could call from the turtle center when we wanted to return. However, we couldn't find a taxi. I asked a collective driver whose ... read more
February 20th 2014
Wednesday was a travel day...bus from Mazamitla to Colima...bus from Colima to Tecoman, bus from Tecoman to Armaria, taxi from Armeria to our hotel in Cuyutlan....about 6 hours altogether. We rode through the mountains, into lush valleys, and back up into the mountains. Outside of Colima, we began to descend to the ocean, and caught sight of the active Colima volcano. Unfortunately, the top was hidden by clouds... We passed through miles of coco palm plantations, and arrived in this small, somewhat deserted beach town, Cuyutlan. Many of the buildings look abandoned or at least closed up. Our hotel reopened under new management only three weeks ago, and is trying hard...it is nearly full it seems, perhaps because there are few other options on the beach. This hotel is on the malecon (beach promenade) and beyond ... read more
February 18th 2014
I'm writing this sitting on our large balcony, in the warm late afternoon sun... We had breakfast at a very old restaurant this morning because almost all the restaurants are closed today...it was OK, but Bill was served a mug of hot milk and a jar of Nescafe when he ordered coffee! We checked on bus times for tomorrow, which was hard because the bus leaves from a stop, not the bus terminal. The ticket booth was closed but the woman who sells tacos nearby told us there was a bus at 11:40 am...hope there is! We took a taxi from the plaza to the entrance of a gated community, where we had to pay to enter, and then walk 2.5 km to the waterfall, El Salta. In the taxi we passed people on horseback, and ... read more
February 16th 2014
Our lovely host at Quinta del Sol, Eleanor, drove us to Jocotepic today to catch the bus to Mazamitla. We only had a 10 minute wait along the highway for the bus to Mazamitla. We shared the bus stop with a nearly toothless old man who was delighted to speak with us...and the man running the tire stand next to the bus stop. The bus circled the far side of Lake Chapala and then turned south and started up the mountains. Oaks changed to pines...and the bus began to falter. We were going about 10 miles/hour. The driver pulled into a gas station, and dumped two big buckets of water into the radiator (I assume) and we made it into town. Mazamitla is promoted as the Switzerland of Mexico. It is also on the list of ... read more