We'll be updating our around-the-world trip with stories and photos. Check in when you can!
Our Travels (subject to change...b/c we can!) -- we've just bought our around the world ticket. If you find that you will be in our neck of the woods, please let us know, b/c it would be great to see you.
April: Bali, Dubai and Jordan
May - August: Europe, focusing on: Italy, Switzerland, Austria, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, the Baltics, Copenhagen, England and ending with Barcelona.
August - early November: Peru, Brazil, Argentina and Chile
November: Mexico and Texas (UT football late Nov, hunting and family on the agenda and of course visiting little Rex!)
December: The States - Arizona, Washington, Oregon and a possible jaunt up to Whistler in B.C.
January: New York, Virginia, Kentucky, New Orleans, & The French Polynesia
February : Campervan New Zealand
March: Visit Nat in Australia & India
April: ...back in Hong Kong!
May 11th 2010
“We have a question for you.” It was my second day back in the office after our return to Hong Kong, and a colleague stopped me in the corridor. Hmm...“we”, not “I”, have a question. I braced myself for the query. “Why is it that you have been on vacation for 12 months, but you have more gray hair now than when you left?” Nice. And thus I was welcomed back into the bosom of my employer. Being forthright and honest is a core value at our company. I wonder if the Hong Kong team might be taking it a little too far, though. Another colleague asked me “have you gotten shorter? You seem shorter.” Must be my new haircut...I'll have to tip the barber next time. The reception upon my return, however, has been very ... read more
April 11th 2010
South Island, New Zealand: 4th - 21st March, 2010 We arrived the south island via ferry from Wellington in the early afternoon, and then proceeded to drive about 3 hours or so to a holiday retreat called Hopewell. Hopewell was highly recommended by (you guessed it) Liz and Ali, who had visited a month or so prior. Uniquely positioned at the end of a very long dirt road winding through the Marlborough Sound (you can also take a ferry or sea plane), Hopewell attracts travelers with the utmost dedication to chilling out. Upon arrival, this dusty duo were greeted by Mike and Lynley, corporate refugees who bought Hopewell years ago and then renovated it to its present condition. We soon discovered the attraction of the place: a beautiful setting with your choice of any number of ... read more
March 23rd 2010
North Island, New Zealand: 25th February - 4th March, 2010 Yea, and it was in Argentinium whence Liz, daughter of Derrick and Dee, and Ali, son of Hilary and Wendy, did come forth from an inn and thusly did break bread with Doug and Rayma. From their sup, Ali didst call forth the servants to bring all manner of victuals: bread, meat of kine, wine and sparkling sweet water were laid upon the table and thenceforth were taken as their sustenance, and it was good. And Ali thus spake: “We have arrived from Aotearoa, and bring good tidings of a land rich in good soil and pasture, and all manner of those things that good land doth yield in great abundance, and all things that the good people doth render from that which the land doth ... read more
March 9th 2010
Stowaway! Throughout our travels, we're not known for traveling light. Having packed for various climates and activities, we brought a lot with us. But, early this year, our load seemed just a little bit heavier, and we were moving somewhat slower. It was clear that we were carrying more than just a lot of clothes and a glider...but to find out what, we needed some help. A specialist we met said he could take a look using an ultrasonic scanner. And there, hidden away, was the unmistakable outline of a stowaway! (See attached photo) Furthermore, this “new addition” apparently joined our travels late last year. Investigations are ongoing, but we have learned that our stowaway will arrive in Hong Kong a few months after us...probably in August. And we'll be waiting!... read more
March 8th 2010
Buenos Aires: 31st January - 8th February 2010 What if a bunch of Spaniards and Italians decided to make a new country? If they did, you could bet that fashion and dancing would be at the top of the agenda, pranzo on Sunday would be the most important meal o f the week, drivers would be aggressive yet skilled, and the national religion would be soccer. In reality, no imagination is required. You can visit the result: Argentina. And the capitol, Buenos Aires, is squirming like Fredo Corleone for respect, in line with Rome and Madrid. Accordingly, Buenos Aires yet another city that claims to be “The Paris of...” some place...“the South”, in this case. (Parisians must be very happy to live in a city that is the benchmark for so many other cities.) Nobody ever ... read more
February 16th 2010
South America: 17th - 31st January 2010 Santiago was our first stop back on the road. We flew down from Houston with the intent to work our way through South America to catch our return flight from Buenos Aires. Having been so busy in Houston, we did little to plan how we would get from Santiago to Buenos Aires, deciding that “we'll figure that out when we get there.” When the time came to start planning, we played with a few ideas. Option 1: Drive from Santiago to Buenos Aires. Ahh, the open road, the Andes, las pampas....and onerous paperwork, extra insurance, and big money. What worked so well in Europe was not (yet) a possibility for a trip from Chile to Argentina. Option 2: Take a bus across the border to Mendoza and THEN rent ... read more
January 23rd 2010
Chile: 31st December, 2009 - 17th January, 2010 “Finally, over there at the base of that hill is a rough neighborhood, so if you land back there, those guys will get to you before we can...just give them what they want.” And thus concluded my site briefing for Day 1 of the 2010 Santiago Paragliding Competition, which left me wide-eyed and in a heightened state of awareness. This information was quite at odds with our experience to date. So far, we had been staying in thoroughly modern Santiago, with its shining high rises and fashionable residents living among the picturesque remains of a colonial past punctuated by the all-too-recent memories of cruel authoritarian rule underscoring the fragile democratic institutions which have taken root over the past 20 years. Santiago, to me, felt like a smaller version ... read more
December 6th 2009
Mexico: 11th - 18th November 2009 Our round the world trip was briefly back in session as we took a week to visit the Yucatan peninsula. I was there back in '77 when Dad took me to see Mayan ruins. Unfortunately (for me), I was too young to even remotely fathom their significance, and focused my energies on influencing Dad to maximize my time at the hotel's pool. Anyway, who cares about a bunch of old buildings. We've got old buildings back in Houston: just look at Downtown, my school....I'd seen old buildings. It's a good thing seven year olds don't write travel books. Well, needless to say, I'm appreciating old buildings a little more (and swimming pools perhaps less so). Rayma and I had originally planned to pass through Merida on our way back to ... read more
November 15th 2009
Alan Gatewood Wenger 1934 - 2009 As many of you know, we received very bad news while we were in Brazil: on September 22nd, my dad, Alan Wenger, passed away while on vacation with my mom and sister in the U.S. Virgin Islands. They'd gone down for Dad's 75th birthday, and he died quite suddenly. We left Brazil as soon as possible and went to join them. Since then, we had Dad's memorial service, and we were honored to be joined by so many family members and so very many friends. As you might expect, our travel blog has taken a back seat, but we're getting our heads above water now. If you look back at previous blog entries, they all have one thing in common (and I'm not referring to routine overindulgence): Dad posted a ... read more
November 14th 2009
Planet Brazil This was how our entry for Brazil started: “The cuiser's landing shook me awake from cryosleep. Status: no immediate threat. My chronometer read 1300 ZULU, but it was clearly morning outside....wherever “outside” was. I reached for my blaster. Asteroids! Blasters have been outlawed on transports for all non-military personnel...my “official” designation on this mission. The boys at Control have some sense of humor. The navigator came on the comm link and gave perfunctory information about air temperature and pressure readings. Enviro suits not required for this mission. Whew! No need to worry about a poorly aimed sneeze blocking my view! Still hazy from my reanimation sequence, I tried to remember my mission details and planned rendezvous coordinates. Missions tend to blend across the parsecs. Out the window was a green banner ... read more