"A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving" - Lao Tzu

Tide Pools and Relax Yesterday I got up pretty early and took off for the tide pools at Asilomar State Beach and Point Pinos. Low tide was expected at 8:30 - so I landed by 7:45 I think. Not bad for a vacation day. Point Pinos is supposedly labeled "The Great Tide Pool", least according to some on "the internets". It was a pretty cool area once I settled in. I wandered and wandered until I sat on a rock and discovered quite a few crabs eating and hiding. Around 9:30 I took off for "17 Mile Drive" - it's a drive along the coast line through the Pebble Beach neighborhood. I will admit - it took over three hours. I was distracted by "the nature". There were quite a few pullouts - and quite a ... read more
Cute Critter
Sea Snail
Seals on High Rock

North America » United States » California » Santa Cruz June 14th 2013

Got up to a fairly early start to the day. Had a little toast and coffee and drove off - headed for Ano Nuevo - home of the elephant seal. Well, no sooner did I get off and going when I had to stop and see the strawberry farm! A few pictures later, and I was off again. Drive through Santa Cruz and head to Donvan Landing ( I think) for another stop at the bakery. Saved my treats for a later snack. Then - don't you know - I find a pick your own strawberry farm, which of course meant another stop! Yummy and fresh! On my way again. Finally made it to Ano Nuevo for some elephant seals! After a 40 minute hike over the fields and down a few sand dunes - all ... read more
But Only the RED Ones!
Farm Truck
Uhmmm... OK!?

My first night in the B&B I was glad to find that I had slept deeply and well, all the time serenaded by a frog out the window who lives in the lovely little water feature my hosts have created on the corner of their home. A little pond that just happens to be right outside my bedroom window. I woke to a cool morning fog that opened to beautiful sunshine. I took a walk/run over the hills next to the house only to find beautiful calla lily farms! Further exploration brought me to the Elkhorn Berry Farm - I don't know what kind of berries - there were just starting to green up into little buds. They were either raspberry or blackberry, maybe. It was a slow, easy start to the day with great coffee ... read more
Kelp Forest
Sea Slugs
Sea Dragons

North America » United States » California » Monterey June 13th 2013

June 13 My travels began yesterday with a rather uneventful flight down to Seattle and my typical bad night's sleep in a decent hotel the night before a flight. I did, however, meet a man on the plane. A teacher/administrator who did three years in Emmonak! We swapped "living in the bush" stories much of the flight. Of course, we discovered all over again that Alaska is really just one big village. Today was all nerves and fidgets as I got into the Prius I was smooth talked into upgrading to. The flight to San Francisco was great - packed plane - but a good flight. I couldn't believe how far it is out to the rental car lot! And the mass amount of humanity sitting and standing and waiting in the lines! It only took ... read more

Asia » Cambodia » North » Siem Reap July 21st 2012

The last travel blog of my trip to Thailand and Siem Reap. Many joys were had, and it was exactly what I needed this summer. Many of you know what last year brought, and the distractions and travel were just the ticket to make it through a few transitional moments. Thank you to those of you who have been following along here. It's been a very different kind of travel journal for me. I had become accustomed to traveling with a paper journal and keeping all the paper tickets and other similar mementos as I went along. However, I am very excited - this site is linked to a "blog to book" service that will allow me to edit my writing and add many more pictures. Voila! Instant scrapbook. Perfect as I was always terrible at ... read more

Asia » Cambodia » North » Siem Reap July 9th 2012

We experienced a typical event on our Friday departure day. Wouldn't you know that after three days of being banned from the beach due to rain, our last day dawns with partly cloudy skies - even the beach chairs and umbrellas were brought out by 9:30am or so. Of course, we were not able to take advantage of the sun as we didn't have time to get out and get back for our check out time. We had to settle for our free leg/foot massage in the early afternoon before our flight. Our flight! Good thing I've had enough experience flying in Alaska to not be too frazzled. We arrived in plenty of time to the airport in Phuket, just like a good traveler should. However, as we stood in the line we noticed the sign ... read more

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Phuket July 5th 2012

Amari Coral Phuket - Swank is thy name Noelle and I spent a wonderful last morning and afternoon lounging at breakfast and the pool of the resort in Koh Samui before having to take off for the airport. "Had" because we were spending some wonderful quality time with our lovely new friends. We started the trip with Rachela, Victoria, and Lee eons ago back in Bangkok and truly bonded over some crazy adventures. And when Gill and Fabiana joined us a week ago the friendships continued. It was sad to say goodbye to them. Arrival and check-in at the Samui airport was seamless. Surprisingly, we were treated to some nice little snacks and drinks at the departure gate. Bangkok Air - "Thailand's Boutique Airline"! The flight was less than 40 minutes and we were served drinks ... read more

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Ko Samui July 2nd 2012

The ferry ride over to Koh Tao was a bit of a mess - the ferry will hold hundreds of passengers - but no cars.  So it's a a huge mass of people trying to get on quickly so you can find a seat - but in the meantime it's a confusion of getting a spot for your bags, too.  All the bags went in the front of the ferry, so we had to bypass a seat to drop our bags, but then had to wade through the other people getting on back to our seats.  In the end, everyone had a place for both their bags and their bottoms.  It was a good two hour ride, and Mr. Bean was playing on the TV.  I could not enjoy the views as I had picked a ... read more

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Ko Pha-Ngan June 27th 2012

Well, the train journey was a bit of an adventure. This time I took the top bunk, and slept fairly well. I was trying hard not to get terribly annoyed with the constant hawking of food and drinks, and I managed to only complain when this one particular porter came through. His tone and manner will continue to haunt me :-) It was a long journey - after having taken an overnight train from Chiang Mai, and just 24 hours or so in Bangkok, we faced the next overnight train, an hour songteaw ride to our minibus, an hour on the mini bus and then about three hours on a decidedly non- luxurious ferry. We are definitely using local transportation! Nai, our guide upon whom we've all become quite dependent, told us that the only thing ... read more

Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok June 26th 2012

The train ride was actually quite enjoyable all things considered. Some might say tolerable? We did head to bed pretty early, and it was quite fun to see the long train car lined with pink numbered curtains over our berths. I was on the bottom and was rather comfy, but the top bunks were a bit tight. It was a beautiful ride through some stunning scenery. Most of the trip during the daylight hours was through the country side with tended rice fields. Pretty cool to see rural areas. Our other train ride was along mainly city/developed areas and we couldn't see much so this one made quite an impression on me. We arrived late to Bangkok, a good couple of hours late. This put us out on the streets at the hottest part of the ... read more

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