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Travel

Life

Plans

I finished up the Spring semester and I couldn’t be happier. This has been an exhausting semester and a complete test of my patience at times. Fortunately, I have a whole month free between now and the beginning of the summer semester. I have a few ideas for things I’d like to do during this time, but I know if I do everything that I want I’ll kick myself for not taking it easy come June. It’s difficult to find the balance between completing tasks and also making time for rest. Here are a few things I want to do while on break…

Read

With my tax return I decided to splurge on one thing: a Kindle. Unfortunately, with my schedule I haven’t been able to read a lot and so I’ll be happy to break it in! I have three books waiting to be finished, as well as books I’ve been adding to my goodreads to-read shelf.

Take photos

Every now and then I reminisce through my Flickr feed to times when I took a lot of photos. I hate that my camera bag sits in my closet literally collecting dust. I’m planning to take at least one photo a day (iPhone pictures excluded) during the month of May. I seem to have commitment issues when it comes to photo projects so hopefully 31 days won’t be such a stretch.

Travel

I’m planning to take at least one trip down to Nashville to visit a girlfriend, and maybe another trip with a long time internet friend for a photo trip.

I wasn’t planning to go back to the NJ/NYC area until August and I was almost certain that I wouldn’t drive it again. That being said I’m driving back to Jersey in late May! Ha ha. I’m visiting the boy and being his date for a wedding. Hey, I can’t pass up an opportunity to wear a dress and the beautiful necklace he gave me at Christmas! I’m also planning to visit two crazy (but not so crazy) flickr friends. I should have no problem taking a picture a day while I’m there. It’ll be fun… :)

If you’re planning a long road trip, I highly recommend listening to the audiobook version of I Drink For a Reason by David Cross (aka Tobias from Arrested Development). I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed reading the book as much but listening to David read the book along with his own commentary was hilarious.

Life Travel

Goodbye Seattle!

"hello seattle" - musically inspired

About 12 hours from now I’m going to be headed back east to Kentucky. I’m not a nervous flyer but I know as soon as I get to Sea-Tac I’ll be anxious for the flight to be over with. My flight is around midnight, with a layover in Houston around 5AM, and I should be arriving in Louisville around 10:45AM assuming there are no delays. Hopefully I can sleep through most of the flight. I have my iPhone filled with several tv shows and new music to listen to. I’ll have that if nothing else.

I’ve really enjoyed the time that I’ve spent with my brother, I haven’t been able to spend this much time with him since I was a kid. I’m really surprised we haven’t got into more arguments than we did given the fact we’re getting into arguments when he comes to KY for a few days. When I say “we” it’s mostly “me” starting the arguments. That’s what happens when you have similar personalities, confined spaces, and love one another.

There’s definitely things I won’t miss like waking up to horns honking outside of my bedroom window at 4 freakin’ AM, gun shots, the traffic, etc. I’m looking forward to getting home to see the family, friends this weekend, classes starting in two weeks, and what ever else happens.

Looking back this trip has flown by, but while it was happening it seemed to go by so slowly. There’s only been one time that I started looking at flights home earlier but after a day or two I decided I would “tough it out”. All in all I’m glad I got to experience this for the summer. Would I do it again? Hmm, I don’t know. Like I’ve mentioned before this trip has definitely opened my eyes to things I forget I liked about living at home. That’s a good thing . . .

So Goodbye Seattle, it’s been real!

Life Photography

San Francisco


If you can’t view this slideshow click here for photos.

This past weekend my brother Roy and I flew to San Francisco. This is my first time visiting San Francisco or California for that matter. I would have liked to visit “the mothership” in Cupertino but it was going to be about 2.5 hours by bus and we really didn’t have the time.

We scoured what seemed like most of San Francisco on our first day. My god is San Francisco hilly! I was warned about this before the trip but I didn’t realize how out of shape I am – well OK I know I’m out of shape but it was a big reminder! We went through Chinatown then North Beach for a boat ride around the Golden Gate Bridge and Alcatraz. At times the boat ride seemed more like a roller coaster because the waves were pretty big at one point causing the boat to bounce up and down. As a result, the last 15 minutes of the ride I was feeling pretty nauseous. I don’t see how people do cruises for several days, maybe with a larger boat you don’t feel a lot of the bumps. Later in the day we went to the Castro and I saw where Harvey Milk’s camera shop used to be and my brother pointed out several areas where memorable moments happened. I’m not too familiar with Harvey Milk outside of what I’ve seen in the film “Milk” but he seemed to have made an impact on Roy.

While we were in San Francisco we also went to the California Academy of Sciences with one of Roy’s friends and his wife. They had a rain forest exhibit going on that was pretty cool or shall I say humid! ;-) It didn’t seem like we were there very long before they made the announcement they were closing. We didn’t really plan that one out too well. That evening we went to an italian restaurant called Steps of Rome. Earlier in the week I got my hair cut and my stylist recommended going there and getting tiramisu for dessert. He was practically salivating when he was talking about the restaurant so I thought it would be a good idea. The pasta dish I had was just OK but he was right about the tiramisu; it was heavenly.

The trip seemed to go by really quick but then again most weekends do go by pretty fast. And as always I wish that I would’ve taken more pictures. I’m glad I had the experience of going to California, but I don’t think it’d be my first choice for vacation. A lot of people – which I’m surprised that’s even a factor given that I really like NYC. Then again it is NYC.

Life Photography Travel

Live from Seattle

seattle centerOn Friday I will have been in Seattle a whole week. The days I’ve been here have flown by, probably because my friends and I have filled it with lots of sightseeing. My first two nights I was here I found myself quite overwhelmed by being in a new place, and I’ll be honest at times I wanted my Mom. Back home I’m used to the comforts of a lot of space from other people, so it felt odd being surrounded by people. It still feels odd but I seem to be coping a lot better. My friends are heading back home tomorrow and it’s inevitable that I’ll probably freak out again. Heh-heh.

Speaking of freaking out, Tuesday was our first time using public transportation by ourselves and it was a complete disaster. It took a good portion of the day switching from bus to bus to get to the Space Needle. Finally we got there and I don’t think any of really got to enjoy it from all of the walking we did during the day – trying to get there. Today was a lot better. My friends stayed at a hotel last night and are doing so tonight. I met them down at their hotel today and made it there without any trouble. Go me! I feel a bit more confident using public transportation because of the problems we had on Tuesday; I guess it was a blessing in disguise.

Here are just a few photos I’ve taken of Seattle so far . . . I’ve still got lots and lots of editing to do and hopefully I’ll get around to it eventually. I’m feeling very inspired being in Seattle right now.

Life Travel

Planning: Part II

triptik

If you’ve been reading my blog you’ll know that I’m embarking on a cross-country road trip in fourteen days! It’s hard to believe how fast time has flown by since the entry in which I initially mentioned going to Seattle. I’m excited about this, but I wish I had more time to get some extra cash, and had some time to rest before leaving as I’m leaving right after the semester is up.

I’ve been downloading all sorts of new music to have for the trip. I’ve been burned out on my current music selection for a while so the new music is welcomed. I got a few recommendations from friends for road trip music, and if you have some to add please do. Today I downloaded Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog OST (saw this recently and loved it), The Dandy Warhols (Odditorium Or Warlords Of Mars and Welcome To The Monkey House), and Tinted Windows – Taylor Hanson’s side project. I’m really interested to hear the Tinted Windows album, it’s Taylor Hanson (from my favorite band of all time Hanson, obviously), James Iha (Smashing Pumpkins), Bun E. Carlos (Cheap Trick), and Adam Schlesinger (Fountains of Wayne and Ivy). It’s got a lot of good reviews, but my opinion will be biased either way.

Trip Itinerary
Day 1 (Sunday, May 17th)
– Leaving early morning, stopping in St. Louis for lunch near the Gateway Arch.
– Drive through the night to South Dakota. We’re half way there!

Day 2
– Arrive at Mt. Rushmore in Keystone, SD to sightsee.
– Travel a couple more hours to Wyoming to Devil’s Tower. Should I see the Steven Spielberg film “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” before going? Apparently it was filmed there many years ago.
– Drive a few more hours to Red Lodge, Montana and stay the night in a hotel. Are we going to wake up the next morning? Heh-heh.

Day 3
– That morning (late morning, I hope) begin the Beartooth Scenic Byway. I think this will be my favorite part, from the pictures I’ve seen the views are incredible. My friends will probably hate me by the end of the drive because I’ll be stopping too many times to take photos. ;-P
– Find a hotel and relax.
Those were the plans, but we found out on Friday that the Beartooth Scenic Bypass is only open seasonly – Memorial Day weekend to early September. I was a bit disappointed in that, but there are several bypasses in Seattle and Oregon that I can do on my own time. Plans for the extra day we’ll have are still up in the air.

Day 4
– Day at Yellowstone National Park.
– Get mauled by a bear. :(
– Recover and depending on how we feel we will either drive the 11 hours to Seattle, or we will stay at the hotel again and leave the following morning.

Day 5 (Friday, May 22nd)
– Arrive in Seattle after 2,600+ miles of driving (!!)

Life

Planning

yeehaw!

Today Lauren, Leigh Ann, and I went to the local AAA office to get them to map out our trip, aka TripTik. In hindsight we could have done this ourselves, because the lady who “helped” us just highlighted on maps what interstates we’d be taking. We thought she might give us hints of landmarks along the way that might be worth checking out. We ended up leaving with several AAA books of states we’ll be traveling through, along with a few maps and the TripTik. I took the Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming travel book to look over. So far we’ve decided to stop at Mount Rushmore and Yellowstone National Park along the way. I doubt we’re going to have a great deal of time for anything else if we want to make it there within 5 days unless we make really good timing and drive through the night a couple of times.

While we were at lunch today we were thinking it would be fun to record the road trip but none of us have video cameras. I thought it would be nice to find someone who already has a video camera and knows how to use it to come with us, and of course pay their own way, too. I don’t guess anyone would be interested in that, would they? Ha-ha! Also at lunch Leigh Ann thought we should all buy cowboy hats for when we go through Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming, and Montana. I bought the one above, they had more feminine hats, but I knew this one I could pass on to my Dad after using.

I promise to update more often once school is over with . . . only about 5 weeks left and I’ll be done . . . well until August! ;-) Hope you’re doing well!