Okay, there’s a big collection of stuff in this post. Most of it is from the ridiculously luxurious cruise on the Montego that AP and I were lucky enough to experience, thanks to Andy and Mica. There’s a great video that Andy put together and a bunch of pictures — I’ll pluck out some of the better pictures with a few stories from the trip, then put up a gallery at the end. The video above really captures the trip well, so watch that for sure if you have ten minutes.
I remember, back when I was in college, telling my friends that I’d never get stuck in a dead-end desk job, doing something I didn’t really care about, just to bring in cash. I justified most of my first 15 years here in Seattle with the fact my job(s) either A) gave me enough flexibility and cash to play when I wanted or B) were “interesting enough” most of the time. I also had (and have) my parents as the role model for major career changes and figured that, with patience and time, I’d figure out what I wanted to do.
Truck driving. Physical therapy. Project management. Home inspection. Software analyst.
And eventually, nursing. Perhaps the most important contributor to making the commitment was the support of Anastasia. She’d finally heard something that she really believed I would (and could) do.
So, here we go. I found out today that I got into Shoreline’s RN program. Starts in six weeks. Time for another adventure.
Abune Josef is the third highest peak in Ethiopia. A broad, sloping bench more than 2 miles across rises up to become the 4295 meter summit from the south, while the north face is a sheer granite cliff. This massive chunk of rock sits in the high afro-alpine 36 kilometers from Lalibela, above Agaw Berat, our second day’s destination.
Now, if you’ve been paying attention and doing the math, you’ll deduce that, if Josef is 36 kilometers from Lalibela and our first camp at Ad Medhane Alem was 13 kilometers from Lalibela, our second day of travel is 23 kilometers, or roughly 15 miles. In fact, Agaw Berat is 23 kilometers away and climbing Josef adds another three, for an even 26 kilometer, 17 mile day. Starting at 11,000 feet and climbing to just over 14,000. Have I mentioned that Anastasia picked this trek? Continue reading →
I’ve learned a couple of things today. For one, there are tour groups that describe their trips in the most benign way possible to take advantage of your perhaps-optimistic assessment of your own physical abilities. Once they get you to commit, they go to great lengths to make you aware of that optimistic assessment by putting you on a trail with dozens of children that can run circles around you while carrying a 35 pound bag of barley. Continue reading →
It’s 8:30 on Friday night and I’m propped up in bed next to AP, in our little round “hotel” room in Lalibela. At an elevation of 2600 meters, Lalibela is home to 25,000 Ethiopians, hundreds of goats and donkeys and eleven rock-hewn churches built in the 12th century by an Ethiopian Orthodox priest/king.
How the hell did I get here? Continue reading →
AP, Hopi and I took off for a two week climbing road trip in late August/early September. We took the new van, all kitted out as a mobile home, and did a big loop through Arcata, the redwood forests, Tahoe, Mammoth, Yosemite, Reno and back up through eastern CA, Oregon and Crater Lake. It was delightful and one of the best trips we’ve had in a while. Lots of good climbing, good swimming and good times.
Took me a while to sort through these — two weeks on the road will give you a lot of pictures. There are a ton in this album, but I’ve tried to trim it down to give the flavor of the trip. I’ve probably not trimmed it quite enough…
Today we drove three hours outside of Dhaka to a rural community endemic for kala-azar, a fatal parasitic disease spread by sandflies. I was excited to get out of the city but I have one word to say about the drive out there and back… HORROR. TERROR. LIFE FLASHING BEFORE EYES. Continue reading →
It’s the end of our third day in Bangladesh and so far, we have only traveled around Dhaka city. This is not a small feat. After being out and about today for ten hours, I can still hear the sound of car horns echoing in my brain while I type this all tucked away in my hotel room. I yearn for a moment of quiet. Continue reading →