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Showing posts from March, 2012

Stranded....

Just a quick update.  We are mid way through our Philippine vacation and have been having a great time.   We spent last week scuba diving in Dumuagete, Philippines (Negros Island).  The resort was unbelievable, the people, food, accommodations were beyond our expectations.
Yesterday, we were on the road again...headed to Legazpi, Philippines to snorkel with the whale sharks.  This is where our trip took a turn for the unexpected.  Our flight was first delayed and then ultimately canceled.  We tried without luck to reschedule our flights for today, but were told all flights to our destination were sold out until March 30...the same day we are scheduled to fly home.
So, long story short...here we sit in a hotel lobby in Manila, Philippines - waiting for our rooms to be ready.  This will be the same hotel we will be residing in for the next 3 days....until our flight home.
As disappointed as we are about our disruption, travel is what you make of it and plan on making the best of my time he…

Changes in Latitude...

I’ve posted these lyrics before, but they sum things up quite nicely, as we get ready to depart tomorrow…
Changes in Latitude
Jimmy Buffett - 1977
I took off for a weekend last month
Just to try and recall the whole year
All of the faces and all of the places
Wonderin where they all disappeared
I didn't ponder the question too long
I was hungry and went out for a bite
Ran into a chum with a bottle of rum
And we wound up drinkin all night
Chorus:
Its these changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes
Nothing remains quite the same
With all of our running and all of our cunning
If we couldn’t laugh we would all go insane
Reading departure signs in some big airport Reminds me of the places I’ve been
Visions of good times that brought so much pleasure
Makes me want to go back again
If it suddenly ended tomorrow
I could somehow adjust to the fall
Good times and riches and son of a bitches
I’ve seen more than I can recall
Chorus:
These changes in latitudes, changes in attitudes Nothing remains quite the same Throug…

Isn't She Pretty?

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Allow me to introduce…Stella….
“Stella” is what I am fondly calling my new photo backpack - my Tamrac Expedition 6X photo backpack.



I know what you’re asking – why the hell do I need a photo back? Well, it seems that J thinks I’m getting off too easy when we travel and that I need to start sharing the “load”, so Stella is his way of passing over some of his 30 lbs of camera equipment to me (read: I’m being transformed into a pack-mule).
I must admit that I’m a little sad to be saying goodbye to Juan (photo not included). Juan is a little tired from all of our adventures, but he’s still got it going on…and man he’s ruggedly handsome and holds a lot of stuff and none of it is camera related (read: 4 bottles of rum). If it wasn’t for J needing to carry an excessive amount of photo gear, Juan would be the one venturing to the Philippines with me. *sigh*
Honestly, I don’t mind really since the backpack seems to be made to fit a female frame (read: shorter person). Unlike a lot of the photo…

The (Latest) Countdown is On...

In less than a week, we are off to the Philippines for two glorious weeks of scuba diving, snorkeling, eating, drinking, relaxing , more relaxing and maybe some shopping.
I’m looking forward to everything - except the journey to get there. The first leg of the trip will see us depart Toronto for a 15 hour flight to Hong Kong. Then it’s another 2 hour flight from Hong Kong to Manila and then another 2 hour flight from Manila to Cebu and then a 2 hour bus ride to the dive resort. Estimated time in transit to get there, including flights, wait time at the airports and bus time = 25+ hours.
A previous trip to Palau was 36+ hours of travel time, BUT we had an overnight stop over in Hawaii, which softened the blow a bit.
All of our travel companions are pretty easy going, but I’m sure someone will have a meltdown before that excursion is over. My money is on one of the smokers in the group. Should be interesting. I’ll be sure to let you know how it goes.
The suitcases are 98% packed. Our 4 pie…

Travel Vacations...

Let me first start by saying that I have no experience in this area, but am slowly gathering some knowledge through my research while trying to help The Boy “discover himself”. Truth is - I’m trying to get him out of my house and into the world…
Although, I joke about his wasted college days, I don’t see anything that helps you decide the things you DON’T want to do in life as a total waste. Yes, money has been spent on school that could have been better spent elsewhere. Enough said… I’m not dwelling on that. Moving forward…
So, The Boy is once again at a crossroads of what he wants to do with his life. He’s tried three separate college programs (broadcast television, business marketing and most recently, culinary management) and none seem to be fulfilling a need in his life. While he enjoys culinary, it’s not something he can see himself making a long term career out of. He’s a hard worker, but just doesn’t have the passion for it.
With all that being said, it’s been discussed (and stro…

Be A Thoughtful Tourist...

Back to travel basics... 
When traveling always remember, that you are a merely guest in someone else’s village, city or country.  You are visiting their home.  Stop and ask yourself - how would you want visitors to behave in your home? 

Making responsible choices before and during your vacation can help protect communities and the environment around the world.
Know Before You Go

Do your homework before you go.  Know where you’re going, what to expect, acceptable practices and most importantly, the cultures you will be experiencing.  It doesn’t hurt to learn a few words of the local language – words like “please” and “thank-you” will go a long way in any culture.  The internet is a vast source of travel-related information – use it.  Ignorance is not an excuse.
Go Green Remove all excess packaging before you leave home.  Understand that proper waste disposal can be difficult or non-existence in remote places and developing countries.J and I, as photographers and scuba divers, take a…

TGIF...

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Make each day of the week like Friday and your life will take on new enthusiasm. - Byron Pulsifer