Dina Stauter


Dina Stauter

I love to travel. I have always kept a journal, but a blog made so much more sense. Now I can share, access it from anywhere and hear anyone else' comments.

North America June 10th 2023

Day 1 Saturday June 10, 2023 We headed out from Knoxville at about 2:30 pm. The flight was uneventful, as was the flight from Dallas to Portland. We got into Portland about 7:30 or so and did the long walk to pick up our bags. Everything came in intact which is a small miracle with American Airlines. :) We did another long walk to the rental car counters and the nice guy at Budget gave us a free upgrade, so that we could have a car with a moonroof. It is a small car, but it was fun to drive. Our hotel was right near the airport and we headed straight there, deciding to order in instead of trying to find a restaurant in Portland. The Tru by Hilton is my favorite brand of hotel. It ... read more

Central America Caribbean April 23rd 2023

Day 1 Saturday April 22, 2023 Our trip started with a drive down to Atlanta where we planned to stay the night and then fly out at 10am to Puerto Rico where we were to board our Royal Caribbean ship, Voyager of the Seas. The drive down was pleasant, albeit windy. Rob and I took turns driving and had a great time talking and the three hours passed in no time. We even made a stop and DQ and Buc-eez on the way down, and still made good time. Day 2 Sunday April 23, 2023 Our hotel was ok, but I was excited/nervous about the potential uncertainties with the first leg of our journey and I did not sleep at all Saturday night. At 6am we were up and getting ready to leave the hotel for ... read more

North America » United States » Georgia » Helen September 30th 2022

Friday, September 30, 2022 We left at around noon from our home in Tennessee and made the 3 hour drive down to Helen. It was an absolutely beautiful drive. Despite the threat of rain coming from the remnants of a hurricane, we didn't see a drop of rain. In fact it was sunny and beautiful for the entire trip. The drive down took us past Tellico Plains and through the Smoky Mountains down to the small Alpine village of Helen, GA. It looked more of Bavaria then Georgia, especially with the many people dressed for Octoberfest in lederhosen and dirndls. It is a quaint town situated a long a river and nestled in the Georgian Blue Ridge mountains. Our condo was situated right on the river and within walking distance of everything in the small town. ... read more

North America » United States » Kentucky » Winchester May 28th 2022

Day 1 May 28, 2022 Saturday (Rob and Dina) I didn't get much sleep as we had an exciting night after a bear decided to pay a visit to our garbage can in our front driveway. It was a big bear too. I thought I might see a bear this weekend, since we are spending it in the mountains in KY, but I did not expect to see one before we even left home! Despite getting to bed late and struggling to calm down enough to sleep, we woke up ready to get going. We headed out sometime after 10 am and went the familiar way through Oak Ridge to the I-75. It's a long drive, so we chatted about politics, science and our dreams for the future. After we talked for a bit, I listened ... read more

North America » United States » New Mexico » Santa Fe April 24th 2022

Day 1 Saturday April 23, 2022 We had an early flight from Knoxville, leaving the house at 5am. The plane from Knox was really tight, but Rob and I had seats together, and we don't mind being close. Delta treated us well overall, even getting us a whole row to ourselves on the main part of our flight from Atlanta to Albuquerque. We had a very nice flight. It was really nice to not have to wear a mask the whole trip. In fact, we have not had to wear masks at all so far. We got into Albuquerque by just after 10am. We decided to upgrade our rental car in case we went on some dirt roads in the Caldera. We paid an extra 20 dollars a day and got a Jeep Wrangler. It's a ... read more

North America » United States » Florida » Apalachicola August 29th 2021

Trip to St. George Island, Florida Aug. 2021 (Rob, Dina and Laurel and Copper!) Day 1 Aug. 28, 2021 Saturday We left the house around 7am for the long drive down to Florida. This was our first trip ever with our little terrier mix dog. He was so excited to get to go with us, he ran to the car and wouldn't even go to the bathroom before we left for fear of us leaving him. He is a very good traveler. I'm sure he was confused that the car just kept going and going and never reaching its destination. He had never been on such a long trip. The drive down was pleasant, with decent weather most of the way and fairly light traffic. Rob and I took turns driving to minimize the fatigue and ... read more

North America » United States » Georgia » Atlanta July 15th 2021

Friday, July 9, 2021 (Rob and I) As soon as Rob got home from work, we packed up the car and headed toward Atlanta. We decided at the last minute on Thursday to make this little weekend jaunt. I booked a hotel right across from the aquarium and that is where we were to stay. It is a 3 hour drive from Kingston to Atlanta and we made it with little trouble to our hotel. We stayed at the Hyatt House, a seven story hotel downtown Atlanta. The only parking was valet style (and expensive), but it was a nice place and the room was well appointed. Best of all, it was really convenient to everything. It was getting late when we got in, so we crashed right away. Unfortunately, the hotel is right next to ... read more

North America April 27th 2021

Saturday April 24th, 2021 Day 1 So our journey began on a sour note. American Airlines cancelled our flight due to weather in a connector city and we had to scramble to get a new flight late the night before we were supposed to depart. We managed to book a new flight through Alaska Airlines, but the stress of it along with normal travel jitters meant that we got little sleep the night before. Our new flight was from Nashville early in the morning, so we got up at 3am and left by 4am, having Laurel drive us (along with her friend who agreed to go). Once our journey began it was a lot smoother. We had a short layover in Seattle, which was just long enough to grab something to eat and pick up some ... read more
DJI_0017 (2)

North America » United States » Minnesota September 26th 2020

Day 1 Saturday September 26, 2020 We got up at the ungodly hour of 3 am to make our way in time to the Knoxville airport for the 6:15 am flight. I love the Knoxville airport, it is just small enough to be cozy, but still big enough to have all of the amenities to make your trip comfortable. There are rocking chairs facing out the window over looking the airstrips and also in each of the bathrooms (the women's anyway!). The entry way leading up to security is decorated with a lovely flowing stream down the middle of the walkway. It was a relaxing start to a pretty relaxing first day. Our first flight was only 1/3 full at best, so Rob and I were allowed to take an entire row to ourselves. He had ... read more
Train Museum
Great Lakes Aquarium
Inside Hilton TRU

North America » United States » Florida » St Augustine December 19th 2019

Friday, December 20th, 2019 Day 1 So it all started with an episode of Expedition Unknown. Josh Gates introduced his viewers to a little book called The Secret-A Treasure hunt. The book was written by Byron Preiss and was a treasure map of sorts. He buried 12 casques, in 12 North American cities, each containing a key that could be traded in for a gem worth $1000. All these casques were buried almost 40 years ago and only 3 have ever been found. I was intrigued, so I joined the community of people who were searching for the treasures (most, like me, only just learned of them from EU.). There is a painting and a poem associated with each city that give clues to where the treasures are buried. I began pouring over the clues and ... read more

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