I decided to fly my niece out for her spring break and the week consisted of lots of walking around DC. She's from Texas and hasn't been exposed to a lot of other places, but like any millennial, she's very able to find her way around the internet. When she wasn't playing Pokemon or Snapchatting (I can't believe I just turned that into a verb), we had flashes of brilliance and exploration in DC. The zoo, in the rain... the monuments by foot... One of my favorite places is the Museum of Natural History, so we spend a whole day there. Yes, we saw the Hope diamond and the giant squid, the frozen mannequins of animals in repose. But, the butterflies were by far the most incredible exhibit. Well worth the price of admission... read more
Museum of Natural History
El lobo
Foxy Lady

Central America Caribbean » Honduras » Bay Islands » Roatán December 24th 2013

A Glimmer Realized, An Opportunity Jumped At Having previously travelled to Honduras via C130 on a whim with my friend David Verde, we flew over some exquisite photo opportunities on the way to visit his family in Tegulcigalpa (the capital) and Palmerola. Sitting in the cockpit with the pilots, I asked about the Earth's artwork that we saw. "Oh, that's Roatan." I had never heard of the tiny little Honduran island, had never even thought about Honduras as a diving destination. Of course, at that point, I had only been diving for about a year, but it sparked an interest and I carried that as a place I'd like to see one day. Who would I take? Now, add a chance view of a former high school classmate's Facebook page. I see a photo of Ronna ... read more
First Dive
Zen Krysten
Surrounded by Sharks

Europe » Ireland » County Wicklow » Enniskerry December 28th 2012

Welcome to Ireland! "Why are you going to Ireland for Christmas?" "You're going by yourself?" "Ireland is pretty dangerous isn't it?" "You should be careful... isn't it going to be freezing this time of year?" - Yes, I heard all these questions and concerns and threw caution to the wind as I decided I couldn't pass up a great deal to travel to the land of faerie folk and Guinness. Anyone who questions to inadequacy of Groupon has clearly never used it in any capacity. $1200 for a 7 night stay at the Ritz Carlton, the roundtrip airfare and a rental car included is the most incredible steal. I truly was worth it in every sense of the word. Enniskerry is where the Ritz Carlton is located. Old, grandfatherly trees surround little rivers and trails on ... read more
Enniskerry Brewery
Ritz at Dawn
The Ritz

North America » United States » Virginia » Virginia Beach October 28th 2010

28 October 2010 Female Supply Corps Officers Selected for Submarine Service The Supply Corps has selected 8 female officers for duty aboard submarines. These warfare qualified Supply Corps officers were selected from a group of talented individuals based on their demonstrated superior performance and leadership. The 8 Supply Officers will attend the Submarine Officer Basic Course beginning in September and will be assigned to submarines upon graduation. The selectees are as follows: LT Britta Christianson LT Kelly Chufo LT Heidi Davis LT Rebecca Dremann LT Melissa Gonzales LT Sohnhwa Lee LT Krysten Pelstring LT Helen Ringer Please join me in congratulating these outstanding Supply Officers on their selection as they continue the Supply Corps ... read more

Africa » Egypt » Lower Egypt » Cairo March 3rd 2010

Some of my favorite classes in school were the middle school Social Studies classes. I was fascinated by the rich culture and ingenuity of the early and ancient Egyptians. It was one of the classes I looked forward to attending, it wasn't a boring history, but the beginnings of civilization. A people who built shrines to their Gods, Kings and Queens. A society that invented irrigation, a multitude of amazing things. When my friend Tony told me he was being stationed at the embassy in Cairo, I had mixed feelings. I knew that he would have limited access to Western people and that it would be difficult for him to stay in such a different culture for two years. On the other hand, to be fully embedded into a different culture is appealing to me, ... read more
Perfect Tree Ornaments
A Day at the Market

One thing I've learned about Southeast Asia is that there are multiple cheap airlines with no rhyme or reason to when they have what rate (at least that i can find). It's also a great thing that I research airports and such. Two airports? In the same city? Yes, that's right. Seriously. The Low Cost Carrier has a separate airport about 5 miles or so away from the international airport. We weren't there for very long but it seemed familiar. Are you sure we aren't in Singapore? Really, the only reason I'm publishing this is to add the country to my list. We drove around for a while, so yes I'm going to claim I've been to Malaysia now. ... read more

Asia » Vietnam » Southeast » Ho Chi Minh City March 1st 2010

Well it certainly reminded me of France.... read more
Smoky Temple
Is this your Uncle?
Wedding Crasher

Asia » Vietnam » South Central Coast » Khanh Hoa » Nha Trang March 1st 2010

Vietnam has to have been one of the most beautiful places I have seen in Southeast Asia. Yes, there are temples and beautiful scenery. Patrons of those temples purchase small fish to "give" as offerings into the ponds there. The streets are swept by the villagers, the streets are lovingly cared for and the artwork and detail of every building, step and even street corner are a wonder. But... the most beautiful part of the country was the people. Speaking only a few Vietnamese words, I was helped at every corner it seemed. Smiles abounded, children laughed and families shared their food with us. I will be back one day.... read more
Memorial Building
National Fly Your Kite Week
Typical Street in Nha Trang

Asia » Vietnam » South Central Coast » Khanh Hoa » Nha Trang February 26th 2010

The Wait It is a rare opportunity for any military member to visit Vietnam. For weeks and weeks, the ship was waiting on word for our Voyage Repair location. Voyage Repairs are just opportunities for the ship to get a little more maintenance work done, anywhere from equipment testing to painting. Sitting in Singapore for a long time, we knew there was a big push to get us into Vietnam, but the logistics became almost as difficult as the diplomatic clearance. If you aren't a Sailor or even if you are, you may not know that when government vessels go into a country, they have to get cleared through the respective country's government to just be there. With a warship especially this is huge, but even the supply ships and oilers have to get permission ... read more
Flying High
Best Cook

Asia » Singapore » Little India February 4th 2010

Could it be that I'll never be back here again? One of the more pleasantly stressful moments on board a ship is when you’re waiting to get off the ship for good and move on to you next duty station. Whether you have a great boss or not, love your co-workers or not, enjoy the galley food or not... things get annoying in little ways, but not one or two at a time, all at once. GET ME OUT OF HERE! AAAHHHhhhhhh! So maybe not that dramatic, but it’s the same thing that happens to us in high school, at least I think it happens to everyone. Come on, you remember it. It’s your senior year, you’ve been dating from the same limited gene pool for a few years, been accepted to college, have the teachers ... read more
Rock Band with the Boys
At the pier
Spike Marlin

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