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Friday, June 24, 2016

Top 4 Items I Always Pack

Today: Top 4 Items I Always Pack

1. Sarong - I don't bring a full towel so the primary purpose to bring a sarong is to cover myself up after a shower... however, my sarong has given me privacy on a hostel bunk bed, served as a pillow case and sheet, been tied into a make-shift pocketbook, and made into a pretty brilliant fort.

2. iPod - Packed with audio books... A few new books I haven't listened to yet and always all the Harry Potters (as backup if the new books I chose are poo or a reader's voice is annoying).

3. Little Packets of Laundry Detergent - I never ever ever check a bag, so I don't bring many clothes. Everything must fit in a carry-on so I bring a small amount of detergent to get me through the beginning of the trip and then pick up more along the way.

4. Headlamp - Incredibly dorky, but so useful... especially the red filtered light when you're trying to sort through your stuff in a dorm full of people you're trying not to wake up.

Next 5 Adventures on our List

Today: Next 5 Adventures on our List (the order is kind of important)

1. Churchill, Manitoba, Canada - We're going to see Belugas and/or Polar Bears

2. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada - To see the orcas rub their tummies on the rocks.

3. Peru - We're going to hike Machu Picchu or explore the Amazon Rain Forest and River (I would like to see a pink dolphin) or both.

4. Cruise around Scandinavia - This will be our relaxed trip, not a crazy adventure.

5. Back to Africa (I'm on a 5 year cycle) - Next time I want to explore Rwanda and go on a Gorilla Expedition! (Mary Konege, are you in?!?!)

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Top 6 Things I'll Miss the Most

Today: 6 things I'll miss the most while we're away (in the order they came into my life)

1. Pablo (a modern ninja turtle)

2. Treebeard (I didn't name her)

3. Quickbeam (him either)

4. Abbie Cadabbie (best little spoon ever)

5. Olaf (he loves warm hugs... sometimes)

6. Mokey Fraggle (the not so cuddly cuddle bunny)

Honorable Mention:

Zori (who I miss every single day regardless of where I am)

<3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3

Top 7 Favorite Travel Memories

Today: 7 of my Favorite Travel Memories

1. Falling in the Chobe River at the Kazungula Strip (the meeting place of Botswana, Zimababwe, Zambia and Namibia) when the ferry with the bus left without me and I tried to jump onto it from shore. Incredibly kind locals pulled me onto the boat and washed me off.

2. Hopping up and down an Icelandic glacier because it was hard to walk in crampons (this is not one of Adam's favorite memories... he did not like my hopping).

3. Hanging over the edge of Batoka Gorge to look at Vic Falls in all its glory. There were ZERO guardrails... just me and giant gorge.

4. Surviving rafting the Zambezi and getting out of the raft onto a beach with singing sands. Each step I took whistled.

5. Breaking back into our hostel after we forgot our wands that Olivander, himself, bestowed upon us at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. A drunk British guy boosted me through the window and then disappeared (I suppose he realized he was just the accessory to a crime).

6. Adam's acting debut and my directorial debut in a film in a tent in Reykjavik, Iceland after 132 hours of straight daylight. 7. New Years Eve 2012 in Kasane, Botswana when the cork of the champagne bottle ricocheted and got Jimmy "in the balls, no underwear."

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Top 8 Favorite Places I've Ever Been

Today: 8 Favorite Places I've Ever Been (in no particular order)

1. Kasane, Botswana
We were driving down the road in Kasane and they were crossing.

2. The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Orlando, Florida
Fishy Green Ale from the Wizarding World.

3. Camelot, Camp Wing, Duxbury, Massachusetts
These are my Junior Boys from Camelot in 2006, I think.

4. Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe
Swimming on top of Victoria Falls in 2012.

5. Castle Island, Boston, Massachusetts

6. Vik, Iceland

7. Sailing Everyday in Snug Harbor, Duxbury, Massachusetts (this is also a Camp Wing shout out)
Me & my sailing kids swimming in Snug Harbor.

8. My hammock, Bridgewater, Massachusetts
We bought ourselves hammocks for our first anniversary.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

School's Out!

Oh, thank goodness! School is out for the summer. This year was particularly difficult:

  • We had a new schedule with 6 classes and no seminar (homework/study hall period).
  • I worked in three departments: Special Ed (my home base), Math (my specialty) and Science.
  • It was my first full year as a teacher.
  • I'm a grad school student.
  • And lots more.
I don't feel like I've ever earned time off quite like this before. This time is also perfect for adventures. This year we're heading to France, Botswana, Namibia and South Africa (in 9 days!!!). Next year I hope to head to Churchill, Manitoba, Canada to see the belugas and/or polar bears. Peru is on our list (we can't decide between the Amazon and Machu Picchu yet). Also a cruise as a more relaxing adventure (but to somewhere amazing... like the fjords of Norway or something) is on the list for a few years from now when we plan to start having/adopting babies.

As we are now paid fairly well for our contributions to society, I don't see a reason not to go on at least one incredible adventure per year.

Top 9 Souvenirs

Today: Top 9 Souvenirs I'd Like to Collect (in no particular order)

1. Euros & Namibian Dollars (I already have Botswana Pula and South African Rand)
2. Sand from the Namib Desert and Boulder Beach near Cape Town
3. Postage Stamps from France, Namibia & South Africa (already have one from Botswana)
4. A small carved animal for my desk at school (I'd like it to be an animal we've seen... I'm hoping for a rhino)
5. An ornament (that doesn't have to be its primary purpose, but something we can hang on our Christmas tree)
6. So many pictures and videos!!
7. Some sort of textile that I can make myself a bag or a scarf with when I get home.
8. Bragging rights... I'm going to swim with Great White Sharks!!!!!
9. Memories of incredible adventure with Adam and the Konege Family!