When I was a young boy at the age of 8 or 9, I used to like to climb up onto what was called Winesap Hill. It was called that because it was planted mostly with Winesap apple trees. There was a formation of large boulders on the side of the hill, which I would sit on and have a clear view of the valley of Lake Chelan. I would spend hours sitting there staring up the lake as far as I could see until the other end seemed pinched out of sight by the mountain range coming together. I would look at the mountains on each side of the beautiful lake and wonder what was beyond those hills. I would image all kinds of sights and people and things to do. I would talk with God a lot back then as though I had a direct connection and tell him that when I grew up I wanted to see what was beyond those mountains. I wanted to see everything there is to see. I want to know people from faraway places. I want to see how they live, see if they live different from me and how I live. I wanted to see valleys and hills and deserts and oceans. I want to see everything this earth has to offer.
Coming from such a poor family I never thought my dreams would come true, but they have. I celebrate all the places I have been and all the places I will see in the future. I am grateful and I believe traveling around the world has made me a better person, a more kind and sympatric person. I ask for one thing when I die. I want it to read on my headstone "He saw the world." I will die happy.
Trips I have taken, places I have seen.
This was my partner and I's first trip together. At the time I had a brother and sister-in-law living there so it seemed as good an excuse as any to visit. We stayed in a hotel next to the zoo and it was a great trip. We found we travel very well together. Our next trip was also to Honolulu for a repeat visit. Once again it was a great time.
We always stay at Blue Chairs when we go to Puerto Vallarta. We always get an ocean front room so we can hear the waves hit the shore at night to lull us off to sleep. It is a very relaxing and rejunvenating spot. We spend all day at the beach and only go out for dinner in the evenings within walking distance of old town or, Zona Romantica.
We stayed at the Turtle Cove Resort up in the rain forest. It is a very unique property. It is grandfathered into the protected rain forest and there are not any other places around so you have the entire beach to yourself. The resort arranged everything we wanted to do. They arranged for us to go snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef. They arranged to take us to a Hart's Crocodile Farm.,take a hike thru the rain forest and take a tram ride to an aboriginal village. This was a dream trip all around.
I would go back in a second. I loved Australia and its people.
On October 21st. 1973, I was ten years old sitting on the floor looking up at the black and white TV that we had on the little roll away aluminum stand when a news story announced the long awaited opening of the Sydney opera house. I remember being mesmerized by it. I turned to my mom on the couch and told her that someday I would see that building in person. She looked at me and laughed and said. "The day you see that I will be the queen of England.", Many years later after taking a tour of the opera house I telephoned my mother from my hotel room and when she picked up the receiver I asked her how it felt to be the Queen of England. She didn't remember saying that to me, but said she did not doubt that, as it sounded like something she would have said. So I got to see the opera house and my Mom was the Queen of England for a day. At least she was in my mind.
The same brother that lived in Honolulu moved to Ft. Lauderdale.
Again, it was a reason to go. It's always good when I can visit my family and we stayed at a very nice place just a block of the beach called The Pink Flamingo. We spent time at the beach and walking around the neighborhood. We of course went Wilton Manors and it was Halloween night and crazy. We had a very nice time all around.
We did not know anything about Palm Springs when two friends of ours told us about it when we were looking for a new destination for a vacation. They told us how beautiful it was and warm and gay friendly. In fact, there were several hotels just for gay men. We were living in Tacoma at the time and we were expecting a big city, but when we flew in I looked out the window when the captain announced we were getting ready to descend into Palm Springs. I looked down and said to my partner Tom, That's it?
Back then they would land and pull up the stairs to the plane and you could walk off right onto the tarmac. Just like John and Jackie leaving the plane! Sorry, couldn't resist.
Well long story short we fell in love with Palm Springs that very first trip. We came down 11 more times before we decided to make this home now! We love it and have no regrets.
We stayed at a nice little resort called The Island House. We loved it there. The rooms where nice and there was a bar and restaurant attached to the property. The size of Key West makes it very walkable to Duval Street and if you do take a taxi it's so short a trip it is very affordable.
This was my first cruise, it was a Windjammer cruise hosted by Sourceevents.com. It was a teak for masked schooner. There were only 70 passengers and I loved this trip. I think it was one of my favorite. The rocking of the ship put me to sleep at night like a baby being rocked by its mother. The islands were a beauty I had never experienced.
We went to:
Old San Juan
I was fascinated by Old San Juan. I love places that are rich in history and Old San Juan certainly is that. It is a beautiful place with breath taking views. We did not stay in Old San Juan but spent some time there going through the fort and shopping in the quaint old town stores.It really is a must see to anyone who visits Puerto Rico.
I can't remember what spurred us to go to Montreal, but I am glad we did. This is a very fun and friendly city. We stayed at a very nice hotel right on St. Catherine St. It just so happened there was a lot of festivals going on at the time we were there. One of which was gay pride. Our hotel, just by chance was placed right at the beginning of the street that hosted gay pride. Unlike where we live, Montreal has gay pride for an entire week. The restaurants come out into the street with their seating. The entire length of St Catherine was shut down and bands played across the street from out hotel. It is one of the cleanest cities I have ever been in. They had street sweepers going at all times of the day and night..
We also of course had to visit Norte Dame.
Athens is a huge city. There is so much to see. I really enjoy history and this place is chucked full of history. It is amazing to see just how much history there is. The day I climbed the acropolis it was 105 degrees and humid. I did not know how much weather wise the climate was like Palm Springs. I took so many pictures my album on the coffee table at home is one of the thickest. It's hard to fit it all in. One odd thing I saw was Dogs. Dogs where everywhere, they were stray dogs, and they lived on the streets. I saw people at bus stations buy food from vendors and give to the dogs. I was told that Athens did not have anything like a Humane Society there. The way they approach strays is kind of a catch and release program. They catch the stray, have them neutered and then return them to the street. Everyone seems to share in the care taking. You see water bowls everywhere and I came out of the subway one day and saw where someone had tucked a meat pie under a sleeping dogs leg for when he woke up. I was shown the kindness of the Athenians at that moment.