Dinner in Hell

Today was a “day off”, so we shuttled into “downtown” Rotorua for some shopping and just general wandering around.

Ah, that sulfur smell…

I may never eat eggs again.

Rohan, Edoras and … a Corgi

The Lord of the Rings was filmed in several locations all over New Zealand. Even just flying into Queenstown on our arrival evoked images of many beautiful scenes from the movie. So, it only made sense that we would take a “Lord of the Rings” based tour while we were here.

6WD, Jet Boats and Trains

Happy Anniversary

Milford Sound – And Another First

I’ll explain that picture in a moment.

Queenstown, NZ

A Final Day in Sydney

Sydney Meet-Up

Blue Mountains

With the cancellation of the planed activities up in Port Douglas due to Cyclone Olga, we took our first formally organized tour – a bus tour up into the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney. The weather threatened (again) but things turned out quite well.

Sydney and Aussie Day

Here’s a thousand words: Yep – I took that, and yes, that’s the view out of our hotel room. Actually it’s a small part of the view, since to the right is Circular Quay, and to the left the Sydney Harbor bridge. I did take a panoramic shot from the roof of the hotel. (Because […]

There’s Rain and then there’s

Monsoon Olga was a bust. Lots of warning, lots of cancellations (including most of our plans in Port Douglas), but then … nothing. Nada. Zip. Monday was a quiet, almost windless day. Hot and humid.

Best Laid Plans

As part of setting up this trip, I’d booked a few activities that were to take place today (Sunday, as I write this) and tomorrow. Note the words “were to take place”. It turns out that 30 years ago Kathy and I got married during “cyclone season”. How … interesting.

Bucket List item: check!

So when I started putting together an itinerary for this trip I asked Kathy if there was anything in particular she wanted to see or do or whatever. She had only one request: “I want to hold a Koala.”

The 33 Hour Day

Actually the title is a misnomer.

Weather, Weather, Weather

The Unlocked Cell Phone

Folks overseas probably thing this is kinda silly, but as it turns out our cell phones simply won’t work overseas. In our case our carrier (Verizon) uses CDMA technology which isn’t even used overseas. Other carriers use the more globally accepted GSM technology, but “lock” their cell phones to their networks. Get a phone from […]

The Dungeness River

The Dungeness River flows north from the Mountains on Washington’s Olympic peninsula along side the city of Sequim and empties into the Strait of Juan de Fuca which separates the United States from Canada’s Vancouver Island (and, coincidentally, my birthplace, Victoria). Along the way from mountains to ocean, the Dungeness passes the small community where […]

A Few Days in Sequim

Sequim, Washington, on the north coast of the state’s Olympic Peninsula, is a two and a half hour drive and ferry-ride from home, and a world away. We decided to take a few days away prior to Christmas, staying at one of the Sequim Retreats vacation rentals owned by a very good friend. Naturally I took […]

Australia and New Zealand

We’re going on a trip!