Our two year anniversary of traveling the world…An interesting morsel from a reader…Happy Halloween to all!

As we drove down the highway, we spotted a dirt road leading to what we thought was a lighthouse. After a distance on the bumpy dirt road our hopes we dashed when we saw this was a microwave or cell tower of some type. In any case, the scene was lovely.

Today, it is our two year anniversary since leaving Minnesota. In one way, it’s hard to believe it’s been two years and yet in another, it seems like yesterday.

Time seems to fly in by in either segments of exquisite adventure or while involved in gentle contemplation, deep in thought, individually, and together we consider how far we’ve come.

In the heat of the day, these grapefruit sure looked cool and refreshing. Believe it or not, one grapefruit without sugar added, has 16 grams of sugar, 40% as much as a can of Coke. Click here for details. Sure, the grapefruit is better, but sugar is sugar. See a Dr. Robert Lustig video on sugar here.

As I spend every afternoon deep into the revisions of past posts, now almost halfway through, I relive each experience, day by day, working my way through each photo, each entry, each challenge, and each resolution.

Last evening before dark, Tom and I walked to a park at the end of the road. As we walked we spoke of how wonderful it is to be able to go back and relive each day through words and photos. 

This appeared to be a variety of artichoke.

Currently, with almost 250,000 readers worldwide, growing each day (please forward our link to your friends to help us grow our site), that we so much appreciate. We’re in awe of their dedication to following us. If it were just us, writing and posting for ourselves, we’d still treasure (although not as much) that which we’ve documented almost each and every day.

At any time, we can search the archives to jog our memory as to date, an experience, or a resolution to a problem. Oddly, we seem to remember more than we’d ever expected by having documented it in the first place. Being able to verify the past, makes it all the more meaningful and memorable.

As much as I love fresh coconut, it’s just too hard to open. The cut halves in the grocery stores lose their moisture and flavor sitting out on display.

Add the fact that many of our readers reach out to us via comments at the end of a post or by email, we feel the joy of knowing that out there in the world, readers are traveling along with us in their hearts and minds, at times, finding comfort in knowing that the mundane aspects of our lives are not unlike our own.  Us humans, we’re kind of alike, aren’t we?

We cherish the fact that some of our readers find a little comfort and enjoyment reading our posts to discover that we aren’t so unique after all, although at first glance, we may seem so.

This rooster was strutting around showing off his pretty plumage at the vegetable stand.

This morning, I lumbered out of bed and pulled the sheets and pillowcases with me in order to wash the week-old bedding, a very “normal” activity. A moment later, I was sitting at my laptop searching for safaris in Australia after seeing a History Channel documentary a few days ago on wildlife in the Outback perhaps a little less than a “normal” activity. Our lives, barren of stuff, enables us to consider such possibilities for which we’re very grateful. 

We’ll be on our way to Australia and the South Pacific for over a year, in a little less than seven months. A few days ago while I sat entranced by the prehistoric-looking animals that wander the deserts in the Outback, I took out the bucket tossing in an Outback safari. I was hooked. It’s hot, arid, and dangerous. But now, after our past experiences, we feel we can handle it in the hands of a competent and knowledgeable guide.

At the Maalaea Beach Marina. Our condo building is on the far right across the bay.

Recently, I started communicating with Staci, a reader who stumbled across our website through CruiseCritic.com. As mentioned in a past post, we’ll be on the same cruise on April 12, 2016, from Sydney to Perth, Australia for a period of 16 days. How funny we connected! How small the world becomes through online communication!

She commented at the end of the post of October 29, 2014, which I quote here with her permission, in the event any of our readers may have missed her comment.

Staci writes:

“These are great pictures! I love the one of the tree on the beach.

I am still wrapping my head around the concept that you aren’t on “permanent vacation” but rather on a “planet-wide living arrangement” When you were writing about the blog post-correction project I briefly thought “Wow, shame they couldn’t wait to tackle that after they got….wait, they ARE home!” Projects don’t disappear just because your address changes every few months, do they!

Thank you for your commitment to taking us along your journey. It is a treat to see the sights, even from a computer. “

Staci’s words made us giggle over her perfect description of our travels as a “planet-wide living arrangement.”  Well said, Staci! We couldn’t have said it better ourselves, in fact, we never did. So, if I may, we’ll use this phrase from time to time to better explain that we aren’t on vacation. We’re living. Thank you, Staci. We love having you “with us” and can’t wait to meet you in person aboard the ship in 18 months.

Who would possibly want to tackle this nightmare?

Today on our two year anniversary, where last year we celebrated on a three-day respite in Kenya to a resort on the Indian Ocean, we do a low key day. Keeping tight reins on our funds in the event we all have to stay in hotels for weeks eating out each meal (on our dime, as promised) should the lava impede our plans, we play low key today. 

Do we go sightseeing today ending at a nice restaurant for dinner? Or do we stay put watching the news on the volcano enabling me to correct another month of posts which takes me from three to five hours? The dinner, we’ll do for sure.

A closer view of our condo building across the bay from the marina.

We’ll decide after our visit to the pool. There’s a couple of what appear to be lovely restaurants we’d like to try tonight located in the nearby Maui Ocean Center which may be perfect for celebrating our special day; Year Two…the World. 

Thanks to Tom, my dear husband and travel companion, whose courage, determination, and pension make our continuing travels possible. Plus, he carries the heavy stuff!

May your Halloween be safe and filled with ghoulish laughter! 

                                           Photo from one year ago today, October 31, 2013:

Ugh! I don’t like posting photos of myself. It seems so self-serving. I’m always complaining as to how the photo came out. Tom, on the other hand, blind love, encourages me to be visible to our readers. So, here is a revealing photo of me from one year ago today as we wandered on the beach on the Indian Ocean. Gee…I wish I still had that suit (in new condition). The elastic was all stretched out making it was easy to put on. But, it didn’t look so hot around the butt with no elastic. I tossed it to further lighten the load. For more photos of our three-day respite from the veranda in Kenya, please click here.

Sunshine, at last…Ebola fears as we travel in the future?

This is a Gold Dust Day Gecko that we found on the wall in the lanai during the storm. He looked up at me as I shot this photo. 
This full-body shot of the Gold Dust Day Gecko shows the colorful spots on her back and the cute little blue fingers.

Tom has been plagued with the awful cough which I’m finally winding down. In the middle of the night, he had several horrible rounds of coughing that sounded as if it would never end. 

During the day he’s fine, coughing only on occasion. His symptoms are almost identical to mine and we anticipate that within three to four nights, his coughing will subside. I’m still coughing at night, but not nearly as often and for as long as Tom’s bouts.

The surf settled down as Hurricane Ana wafted away.

We’re on the mend. Hopefully, a week from now, we’ll be fine. Yesterday, finally feeling well enough to get out, I decided on a walk. A vigorous walk would have been my preference, but with the recent illness, I decided on a medium energy walk, setting the timer on my phone for 20 minutes, knowing I’d work my way up a little each day as I rebuild my strength.

Forty-five minutes later I returned to our condo, excited and refreshed realizing how lucky we’ve been to find the condo in this wonderful quiet area at Maalaea Beach.

A warning sign on the ground of the condo building.

I made my way toward the Maui Ocean Center, the world’s largest tropical aquarium in the western hemisphere.  As I arrived two buses of cruise passengers were being unloaded as they made their way into long lines to buy their tickets. 

As curious as we may be seeing what this attraction has to offer, after our glorious experiences of watching animals in the wild in Africa, I have a hard time seeing wildlife confined. This is a phenomenon that affects many who have been fortunate to go on photo safaris and in our case, live in the bush among the animals for three months.

The flowers blooming on a tree in the yard.

Having seen the lifestyles of animals in the wild, it’s impossible for me to find pleasure in seeing wildlife trapped in an existence that may be tolerable with their easy access to being fed but, bound by borders that prevent them from exploring their natural habitat, foraging for their own food. 

Walking past the entrance to the exhibits, I was surprised to find I was at a small mall with a variety of shops and three new restaurants, including the backside of Beach Bum’s BBQ & Grill where we dined on our first night here, last Thursday.

This interesting palm type tree is growing on the grounds of the building.  Tom’s walking along the shore checking for points of interest.

Surely, we’ll try each of them as we explore new restaurants once or twice a week while we’re in Maui. At the moment, we’re loving dining in enjoying our favorite homemade meals. 

A few of our readers have inquired as to our concerns over Ebola as we’ll continue our travels outside the US next spring in the South Pacific. At this point, we can only say it’s a “watch and see” scenario. 

The Maalaea Marina walking distance from our condo.

Five months ago, we were living in Africa, not leaving until May 15, 2014. Would we have gone to the continent for almost nine months had Ebola been in the news as it is now? It’s hard to say. Ebola is not prevalent in the countries we visited. Although, we may have decided against Morocco with its closer proximity to the ravaged countries in West Africa where outbreaks are rampant.

Our hearts break for the victims of Ebola all over the world, including those isolated cases in some of the countries in which our readers live. They too understand the fears the media have imposed upon us.

Flowers on a walk.  Had we visited Hawaii in the spring and summer, we’d have seen many more flowers. 

When one thinks about it, hundreds of thousands of patients die of hospital-borne infections, Antimicrobial Resistance, in the US, Canada, and Europe, and others of countries each year although these numbers are seldom mentioned by the media. What is being done to prevent this? Washing hands? Not enough.

I won’t get on my health soapbox here. We both prefer to save these conversations when among others who share the same passion, often on a cruise ship during dinner. Our site is intended to share our personal experiences as we travel the world.

Both boaters for most of our adult lives, neither of us longs to ever own a boat again. 

Ebola is a disease that has spread to other countries through travel and then, it has the potential to have an impact on all of us. In reality, our potential exposure is no greater through our travels than any of our readers who may travel three times a year. 

For our worried family members and friends, we continue to travel with caution and common sense. Of course, we won’t visit an Ebola ravaged country. Other than that, we’ll continue to enjoy our worldwide travels.

A view of the Maalaea Marina from the mall.

For now, we continue to work on feeling well again. Viral and bacterial illnesses most often are as a result of exposure to others carrying the germs. Somehow, in Waikiki, either touching a railing, sitting at a dinner table, or grabbing a menu put the contaminants in our hands, and then we ate our dinner. That’s most assuredly is how we became ill.

When we assess how easily illness is transferred from person to person, it makes us realize how vulnerable we all are. Although washing our hands helps reduce our risks, as we’ve heard regarding Eloba, it’s much more complex than simple hand washing.

This shop from the Pacific Whale Foundation is located in the mall. I wandered inside and was impressed by the nice clothing they had for sale at reasonable prices.

The world is our oyster and we’ll continue on our travels, albeit with added caution, to cherish this fulfilling life we’ve chosen.

                                           Photo from one year ago today, October 20, 2013:

During our three months in Kenya, we fell in love with Jessie, Han’s little outdoor dog. She slept outside at night, often sitting by our door in the morning waiting for us to come outside to spend our day in the outdoor living room. For details for that date, please click here.