You either have Alaska inside of you or you don’t.
Alaska is bigger and wilder than the soul can take. The people you meet there are mythological; they all have real, tall tales to tell. The wilderness is frankly overwhelming and incomprehensible to your soul. This is exactly what I wanted.
Ever since I was a child, I’ve been fascinated with all things Alaska. The snow. The danger, the struggle, the extremes. The Russians, the Eskimos, the gold rush, the salmon. The size, the wilderness, the waters, the mountains. The rugged, challenging lifestyle and the people who are drawn to it. It’s all about big, and difficult and “impossible beauty.” There’s a reason why it’s called “the last frontier.”
Whilst you read this, my daughter and I are in Tulum for a few days. We hopped on a bus across the peninsula to step away from the red and green scene which is so cloying in Tropica. You all know that living in Tropica has dulled my lifetime pleasure in Christmas. Santa next to a palm tree? Wreaths and frost, mulled wine and carol singing don’t sync in 90 degree Latinoland. So the beach is a perfect place to leave the anachronisms behind — for a few days anyway.
Hi everyone! After a trip I jot down my observations and what I learned about travel, packing, shopping and eating. Hope there are some tips that will help you plan for your next trip!
Packing. For my three week trip I packed a carry-on wheelie with my usual minimalistic flair. Not much room for error. Still, when I unpacked back home, I set aside what I did not use even once: two t-shirts, two long sleeve shirts, one pair of pants, two undies, one bra, two pairs of socks, bathing suit. Wow, really?
Two days ago I returned from a vacation for a “big” birthday: a long, dreamy road trip through Montana, Wyoming and Colorado.
I write this during a steaming hot Saturday afternoon in Tropica. The skies just opened up and I’m storm watching with my animals. But my mind is still dreaming of places richly named: the Gallatin Gateway. Cowboy Heaven, an upper valley on Ted Turner’s extraordinary Flying D ranch dedicated to land conservancy and free range buffalo roaming. Skalkaho Pass. Choteau. Silver Bow. Medicine Lake. Bear Creek.
I used to walk to high school with Jeanette every day. Now, decades later, we’re going for a big walk hike together.
Two high school friends, meeting up for a girly road trip. We’re as opposite as can be: She’s slim, I’m curvy. She eats slowly, I eat faster. She walks fast, I walk slowly. Will we still be friends by the end? I’ll try to post from the road, but I’m also trying to unplug. [Read more…]
Warning! This post may bore you to tears. Or you may laugh and recognize yourself.
Hey, it’s a beach read, slouchy, easy…and people love it when I air my dirty laundry (in this case, pants) in public. Here goes.
I invited my DD to be the voice of reason as I tackled, Marie Kondo style, the pants section of my closet. As I kept bringing out armfuls of pants, DD’s face went from amused to shocked. The problem is: every single pair brings me joy. That means they’re keepers, right?
You don’t have to be an expat to relate to this. Every country around the world has its delights and its lacks. Whilst the world has become a multicultural place and “free” trade has allowed many products to circulate, there are always things people will lug to and fro.
As many of you know, I live in Tropica where it’s slow, hot and green. This past spring, I undertook the task of having my house painted. I had been putting it off for years and it was time to face the music. As is local custom, I hired one painter who methodically worked his way through the house, inside and out. I was prisoner of my house for the six weeks it took, rising early in the morning to let him in, driving to buy more paint and supplies, letting him in and out, waiting until he finished at six. It was relentless and mind dulling.
Solo travel for me is the norm, not the exception. I don’t even call it solo travel, I call it travel.
My first job out of university was as an aviation journalist. I traveled the world on assignment. Europe, South America, Africa and memorably, to what was at the time Communist Eastern Europe. That job is where I learned how to travel.