Sunrise at My Favorite Spot

Favorite Places

Do you have a favorite place?

I usually have a hard time picking a “favorite” anything. Favorite country, favorite animal, I even find my favorite color problematic! There though is an easy answer to my favorite morning…Lanikai. I exist in a world of movement. I am constantly going places, most of which I will never return to, but I keep going back to Hawaii and specifically back to Lanikai Beach. If I have the morning in Oahu, I will always do the same thing. I hike up the Pillbox Trail, then go and swim at Lanikai Beach. One day, I hope Pamela and I will live out my remaining days on Oahu, watching the most perfect sunrise, knowing, there is no place on this Earth we would rather be.

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In the Depths of Union Station

Metro Walls

I love the tube, the metro, the subway, the L…public transit is the way I like to get places. With the exception of Hawaii, I generally hate to drive in unknown places. Public transit lets me see people going about their daily lives, how they get places in a way no other transportation can. I am also fascinated by the honeycomb-like walls of the D.C. Metro system. I often wonder if this was an aesthetic choice, of one that provides stability to the tunnels. Anyone know?

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Landing in the City of Angels

Flying Photos

As much as I fly, you would think I would take tons of aerial photos from planes. NOT SO! With a few exceptions, I usually don’t. I am, what you might call a getter-upper. I drink a ton of water (and wine) when I fly and I tend to use the lav as much as the rest of the cabin combined. As such I am an isle seat preference on my account (you have that set, RIGHT). On this flight, the sky was crazy colored with the sunset and the smog hanging over L.A. that I just leaned over the guy sitting next to me. He too was taking photos so that helped break the ice!

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On the Waters of Lake Como, Italy

The Most Beautiful

I read a story recently about a man who’s wife was dying. She asked to be taken on one last trip before she passed, she wanted to be surrounded by beauty and love. He thought of all the places he had been (he was also a traveler like me)…he took his wife to Lake Como.

I can’t say I have a favorite place in the world. There is simply too much wonder and beauty…too much flavor. The one thing I can say about the man, he made a perfect choice.

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Man in a Hat, Venice Before the Tourists

Up Early

I took the earliest train I could find into Venice that morning. As I stepped off the train station steps, I felt the undulation of Venice. The city wasn’t awake yet, the sun with just coming up and Italians get a later start to the day. Crossing my first bridge, I luckily had my camera up because the man with the red bag came walking down by himself, destined for work no doubt. I caught this singular frame of his day, but one was all I needed to recall my first moments in Venice.

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Door Accent in the Forbidden City Beijing China

Blessings of Wind

Each time I visit China, I am reminded of the blessings of the elements. Wind is most usually the element that occupies my thoughts. The air in China is something out another time. I have always had trouble deciding if it is America’s own industrial past or some dystopian version of the future. As we recovered our lung health, so too must the Chinese. The culture is wonderful and mesmerizing to be so hampered by environmental degradation. I am also thankful, despite the choking pollen, to come home to a part of the country that has moderately clean natural resources. Oh how previous these are and we have to fight to keep them clean and available for all people to use freely!

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Forbidden City Railing, Beijing China

Sans Tourists

The Forbidden City in Beijing is PACKED with throngs of tourists. Despite this, there tends to be peak areas of concentration where the masses congregate in places as truly sprawling as The Forbidden City. Sometimes you are lucky (especially if you are early enough) to find open courtyards almost completely devoid of people! Always have you camera at ready, you never know when these opportunities will be disrupted by an ill placed tour group. I only had to remove about 5 people in photoshop for this shot and they were far off in the shot, making them really easy to remove.

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Instagram Fav’s January – April 2015

Instagram Personal Favorites

I always assume everyone is already following me on Instagram, but from my follower count compared to my blog hit count that just isn’t the case! Please follow me on Instagram…seriously you will be the first to see travels AS they happen! Quite a bit, my Instagram feed is a sketch book of things to come on the blog! I really should put together a regular, scheduled Instagram post. I have further been thinking about starting to process some of my iPhone photos off the iPhone. I have always saved those strictly for processing on the phone, but I recently realized there are some really interesting shots on there!

The images below are from my travels between January and April of 2015 were shot on and processed on the iPhone. I didn’t ONLY use Instagram, but that is my general tool for uploading my iPhone travel works when I am traveling! Enjoy!

Embrace Travel Sydney

Super Trees Singapore

Light Show at the Marina Bay Sands Singapore

Water Lillies in Bali

Sake Barrels in Tokyo

The Imperial Palace Guard Tower Tokyo Japan

Stacked Red Rocks in Sedona Arizona

Garden in Marakech Morocco

Attic Graffiti in Morocco

A Girl Looking Off the Top of Sleeping Giant, Kauai

Kauai the Beautiful

The hike to the top of Sleeping Giant (Nounou Mountain) in Kauai isn’t the most arduous hike, but the view at the end if rewarding, if you dare disobey the signs warning of the immanent fall to your death (always heed warning signs!). When I reached the Giant’s chin, there was a small group occupying the top. This girl stayed here looking out at the expanse of Kauai for a long time. I cant say I blame her. Kauai is one of the most beautiful places in the world, there is a beauty, a majesty in all of Hawaii that is palpable. That sub-current is one of the reason’s I think people get “caught” by the Hawaiian Islands and leave their lives on the mainland. The pull is just TOO powerful. I am constantly feeling that pull myself. Even though I know I should go other places (there are so many places to go), I time and time again am pulled to Hawaii, to sit, to stare out, to lose myself in wonder.

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Small Gold Leaf Covered Buddha in Thailand

Beautiful Offerings

Thailand is one of those places that tops my “The Most Foreign Places I Have Visited” list. I keep saying I think I need to give the country another chance. The more I travel the more I realize my travel style and comfort level tends to lend itself to more to the West. I particularly enjoy the history of Europe, not to mention its climate! Despite this, I firmly believe in testing my own boundaries and comforts. There is a beauty in Thailand unlike any other place on Earth. There is much to be learned here as well, both about the place and, I think, myself.

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