New post, new blog!

Sorry I’ve been absent from this blog for a while.  Big changes have occurred in my life.

1. I moved out of DC to my new home of Huntington Beach, CA

2.  I just completed a bike trip from Seattle to San Francisco.

3.  I started a new blog a couple of months ago

Once I establish a source of income here (yes, I moved without a job -at the expense of worrying my parents insurmountably), I will be back to making silly posts about the recent recipes I try out, the art I discover, and the knowledge I gain.  So keep an eye out for me!

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Seattle

I started my adventure in Seattle.  After spending 3 days in the city and taking countless pictures, here is the city summarized in ten photos.

And the journey begins….

In Seattle now and will be for the next couple of days.  Then my friend and I will begin our long bike journey south to California!

Here’s the exact planned route:

Seattle…Olympia…Sand Island Marine Park…Portland….Salem….Eugene…Tahkenitch Dunes Campground….Humbug Mountain State Park…. Jedidah Redwood National Park…Arcata… Humboldt Redwoods State Park…MacKerricher State Park…Ukiah….Santa Rosa…San Francisco!

Not sure how often I will be able to post items, but I will certainly try each night we have internet access!  Check them out here.

Let’s Be Realistic Here

A few weeks ago, my roommate and I revisited our bike trip plan from DC to Austin, TX…..and we nixed it for Seattle to SF.  Although the Pacific Northwest is more popularly traversed than our original route, there are several reasons that convinced us to switch:

  • the temperatures will be much cooler (70 vs 90 degrees)
  • more bike trails will be available (Washington is one of the top bike friendly states)
  • the route will take us about half the time (about 2 weeks).
  • there will be more opportunities to camp throughout the entire trip

We figure this will be a good starting point for any future long-distance we pursue.

Now, our route will include the following cities:

Seattle, WA

Portland, OR

Eugene, OR

Arcata, CA

San Francisco, CA

Departure Countdown: 26 days!!!!

Portland!!!!

Portland is a city of passion.  It seems like people do what they love -whether it involves food, art, bicycles, music, beer, or cars.  Everyone takes time to enjoy and do things consciously.  No one is in a rush to catch the Max rail.  Even more amazing, drivers will even spare a few seconds to simultaneously stop on a four-lane road and wave pedestrians across the street the instant they reach a crosswalk.  Although there seemed to be a record amount of smokers, the city is a place with which I felt a connection.

The little time I was able to spend exploring the city outside of working a conference has inspired me to snap out of the end-focused DC mindset and start living every day with happiness in mind.  Thank you, Portland!  You are a gorgeous city with wonderful people!  I hope DC adopts a thing or two from you!

National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest

Photography and travel – two of my greatest passions.
And they are combined in this photography gallery of the 24th Annual National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest.  There are four categories: Travel Portraits, Outdoor Scenes, Sense of Place, and Spontaneous Moments. Check it out!

Photo by Alessandro Cancian.

Everyone bikes!

If you’ve been following me for a while, I suppose you already know my love for bicycles.  I was fascinated when I found Pedal Power, a visual article with an amazing collection of 49 photographs depicting bicycles from around the world.

Three wheels.  Baskets.  Immobile.  Carts.  Multiple seating.

You will see it all in the gallery.  Take a look.

from Pedal Power on boston.com

DC to Austin via bike in 30 days – It’s happening!!!

Last night, my roommate and I spent two hours brainstorming supplies and a detailed route for our bike trip to Austin, Texas (which may return to the original plan of DC to LA depending on circumstances).

We will be biking on average about 75 miles a day with a few days of exploration and relaxing in between.  To keep our costs at a minimum, we will primarily be camping in Virginia and North Carolina.  In bigger cities, we will stay with friends or couchsurfers.  The key pit stops are….

Charlottesville, VA

Blacksburg, VA

Boone, NC

Asheville, NC

Athens, GA

Atlanta, GA

Mobile, AL

New Orleans, LA

and then…..Austin, TX

(If you are along this route and are a couchsurfer, let me know!)

The countdown begins….

We have 88 days before our scheduled departure date of September 1.  In between now and mid July, we hope to get a majority of our equipment together, start fundraising, and go on a couple of trial long-distance trips to Mt. Vernon and Harpers Ferry.

So exciting!!!  Mosquitos and crocodiles of the bayou – bring it on!  Austin, here we come!

Cross country road trip: DC to LA via bike!

Not to post about bikes again, but……

A few weeks ago, my roommate was voicing his restlessness and suggested that we do a cross country road trip to California.  My automatic thought was “That is crazy!”  However, I was surprised that what escaped my mouth was “Yeah! Let’s do it!”  Given a moment to think about the response, I realized that I did want genuinely do this.  Why not? This is the perfect time because I have no constraints of a permanent job, school, or kids to complicate my ability to take a couple months off and bike with pit stops along the way hanging out with couchsurfers and friends, sightseeing, camping, and making many visits to the landromat.

The Adventure Cycling Association website is a great resource for long-distance biking routes all over the continental US.

The proposed route:

Tidewater Potomac –> Underground Railroad –>Southern Tier –> Pacific Coast

So….September 2012 – DC to LA.  It’s a while away, so hopefully, it will happen.