Road trip today…Photos tomorrow…

We’re packed and ready to head out the door to go to the office at Laru Beya to rent a newer air-conditioned Toyota SUV, model unknown at the moment, for a road trip on our own. 

The 12-hour car rental fee is $65, substantially less than such an outing on a tour. The places we’ve chosen to visit don’t require a guide. Had we chosen to go on a tour, the cost would have been upwards of $300 without the freedom of exploring on our own while taking photos at our discretion.

Our plan is to take the 2 1/2 hour scary road, the Hummingbird Highway, to head to the Cayo District, where a wealth of amazing sites may be seen.

With a map, directions, and information about the sites that we’ve printed on our portable PrintStik printer; our water shoes, camera, cold beverages, binoculars, bathing suits, towels, bug spray, we’re well-armed for the day.

Tom insists we bring our passports.  After all, we are in a foreign country.

On the return home, later in the day, we’ll stop for groceries and dinner.

Most likely, we won’t post our experiences and photos until tomorrow afternoon.  There should be many photos to share!!

Stay tuned for a full report of our day!

It’s our blog’s one year anniversary…Thanks readers!

January 21, 2013 as we prepared to board our second cruise.  Yep, we’re unloading three of the large bags when we dock in Miami for 10 hours on April 13, 2013.

Originally, when we started writing this blog last March, as we (I write and research. Tom, now retired, does most of the research and fact-checking) muddled our way through the endless details of planning our worldwide travels, the intention was to allow our family and friends to easily see where we are and what we’re doing.

As the detailed research continued, we started sharing some of the valuable links that aided us in finding our choice of locations, vacation home rentals, cruises, and potential hazards and obstacles along the way. 

If in the process of writing this blog, we inspire one reader to further their own research for their travels, whether, for a week or a lifetime, we’d be delighted.

Little did we know that a year later we’d have readers from all over the world in the 10’s of thousands.  What?  How did they find us? 

Every blog post and web page have a number of keywords associated with a particular entry.  Hang on, this is more complicated than you’d want to read here.  Here’s a link further explaining KEYWORDS, in case you’re interested and aren’t familiar with the word in reference to the web.  Keywords, may in fact have been how many readers have stumbled across us.

Another way is “word of mouth.” While on the cruise through the Panama Canal we met a lovely couple from Malaysia.  At that point, the blog stats (which I can review at any time) hadn’t indicated any readers from Malaysia.  Lo and behold, three days after the cruise ended, I observed two readers from Malaysia.  A few days later, there were 78 readers in Malaysia.  It grew exponentially from there to over 700 readers in Malaysia thus far.

Imagine, that your senior parent is considering an extended vacation and we’ve discussed how we are handling our prescriptions abroad.  You forward the link to that post to them.  They read it, forwarding it to their neighbor who is also considering travel.  It goes on and on.

For this, we are grateful.  Why does it matter to us that it grows?  It’s exciting!  It’s with the same enthusiasm one feels when sharing a photo or comment on Facebook. We feel “connected.”  Those of us Facebook fans, such as ourselves, enjoy the chatter, the laughter, the insight, the photos, and the opinions of others.  Seeing the smiling faces of our grandchildren, other family members and friends keep us from feeling so far away.

A few have asked, “Why do you have advertisers on your blog?  And, what do you get from that?”  Advertisers may, in time, offset some of the costs associated with maintaining a blog:  web hosting, domain name fees, and blog designer fees, all of which expenses we must maintain.  However, it takes considerable time and many more readers than we have at present to actually generate an income. 

Yesterday, March 14th was the actual one year anniversary.  I had planned to write about it yesterday but got sidetracked with our “Jell-O” searching story. Ah, the joys of retirement combined with world travel.  The only timetables we must meet are those when moving to a new location predicated by flight times, cruise times, train times, ferry times, and cab times. 

Oh, there’s one more. Every Friday night we take our once-a-week Malaria pill with dinner. Life is good. 

Thanks for sharing this journey with us. Keep hanging out with us.  Lots more to follow and, in 26 days we’re off to our next adventure, two Carnival cruises back to back!

Moonlight becomes you…

The late afternoon moon.

This old Johnny Mathis song wound through my brain last night as we watched the moon progress from the afternoon into dark. Yes, I know. That song sure dates me! 

Here’s the link on YouTube to this song that for old timers, like me, will bring back memories.  Listen here:

The moon at 9:00 pm.

Moonlight seems to appeal to everyone, young or old, as we marvel at the wonder of space, our world, the moon and the sun.  As I sit here on the veranda, the sun in my eyes, my laptop monitor hard to see on yet another hot sunny morning, I prepare to post the photos we took last night.

Back in Minnesota, on a full moon night whether on a warm summer’s eve or in the brisk cold of winter, we always stepped outside on those nights to languish in the bright beam of light cast upon the lake, even when frozen, reflecting a magical feeling of awe and surprise.

The moon from our veranda.

Here in another land, we find that we all share in the romantic commonality of reveling in the moon’s beacon of light reflecting so graciously upon the sea. Last night was no exception, as we noticed our few neighbors also on their verandas necks stretched to the heavens.

Thank you, moon.  Thank you, sun.  Thank you, God, for making our world and it heavens only but a glimpse of what is yet to come.