North America, Asia ·
11 Days ·
24 Moments ·
28 July 2018
Final day! We LOVED our sailing trip through G Adventures and fell in love with our silly, fun crew. We all pitched in and presented them with a sweet tip at the end there. Some very genuine hugs goodbye and then 5 of us were off for a temple visit (complete with glasses-stealing monkeys) and a wonderful lunch. Now at the airport heading back home. Thanks SO much to those of you who followed me on this journey! Meant a lot to me. See you soon, America! ❤️
27 July 2018
More random photos taken by my fellow- travelers.❤️🌎
This sailing trip has been a lot of fun. So glad I did it! Saw a lot of Lombock and the surrounding islands. Snorkeled amazing reefs, met some awesome people, got an amazing first-hand look at the culture here - my fave part! Celebrating our last night together at a rooftop beach bar. Begin heading home tomorrow. 😢
26 July 2018
Today I re-visited Gili Kedi. Tiny island but pretty. Had it all to myself for 20 minutes until roughly 16 people showed up. Later we sailed to another small island that had about 7 cows on it just wandering around. In the evening, we had our dinner on the island - when suddenly the cows were just there staring at us from the brush. It was pretty hilarious. Two of the crew took a selfie with a cow right between them.😂😂🐗
25 July 2018
LOMBOCK PT 2: Spent a few hrs on this gorgeous beach and had some veg curry for lunch. Becoming good friends with my travel companions. I’ve dubbed three of the five girls The German Hotties: Bella, Mira, and Charlie. They’re a lot of fun. We hiked up the side of a hill to watch the sunset and then proceeded to a really cool area called Kuta. Dinner was YUMMY! Grilled mahi mahi, red rice, and a veggie skewer- extra spicy! ❤️. Did a little shopping and the had drinks at a rooftop bar. Got back to the boat around midnight. Fun day!
LOMBOCK PT 1: Land lock! Because there are huge swells around the Gili islands, our guide came up with a Plan B - land tour of Lombock. Lombock is a large island across from Bali. A little more modern, with better roads. Every time we go out, we have to take a motorized dinghy. ‘This is my least favorite part because you have to climb in while trying to stay balanced. EVERYONE holds out a hand to help stabilize me because I’m the least able to get in and out of it. Meanwhile the others just jump in and out of it. They’re young! The mangrove bridge was quite scary!
24 July 2018
Having a great time on this sail boat adventure! The crew caught some fish, which we promptly ate for lunch. Stopped at a tiny island today near Lombock. Saw over 100 starfish! And wild roosters! Beach bonfire at night with my new friends who are all really nice. One of them is from London and acted just long enough to have a lot of famous friends. The places we visit are very remote and pretty. Taking a land tour of Lombock tomorrow, then to a beach with swells so some of the gang can go surfing. I’ll be watching from the beach!
23 July 2018
I turned 50 today. I didn’t know it but the day before, my traveling companions somehow tracked down a bottle of champagne and a pound cake and surprised me with a champagne toast at breakfast. I also got a lot of hugs. We snorkeled today at an amazing coral reef at Nusa Penida - so beautiful! Later we went for a VERY bumpy ride to the top of the island for a view. At the end of the night, the crew presented me with a birthday cake they baked themselves and everyone sang. I was totally surprised. It was an unforgettable birthday for sure.
22 July 2018
Part two: SEA. The 2nd part of my trip is a 6 night sailing tour of Lombok and the Gili islands. I’ve got a fun group!!! 5 solos, 2 couples. Im the oldest tho ( and the chubbiest). Was really sea sick at first so no pics of the start but after an hour I was fine. Last pic is the setting sun of my 40’s (tho you can’t see it sorry).
21 July 2018
COOKING CLASS PART 2: After the trip to the market, we came back and Wyman taught me how to make 7 different parts of a 3 course Balinese meal. Balinese food is a mix between Indian and Thai food. The cooking took 2 hours. The eating took 30 minutes.
COOKING CLASS - PART 1: This morning I visited a village food market. It was a highlight of my visit because I was totally fascinated. I signed up for a cooking class (only $41 usd!!) and my guide, Wyman, took me to this gigantic outdoor market. They’re open from 3am - noon everyday! We went at 7am and it was packed. I took a video of it although it’s pretty long at 20+ mins. Going to try and post it on FB. Definitely worth watching the entire thing- especially if you like to cook. Only thing, Wyman’s English was limited so I couldn’t ask as many questions. He has a thick accent but he told me a ton of cool things!
20 July 2018
Tonight I went to a Balinese dinner featuring traditional dance. It was amazing and so was the food. At the end I was asked to go on stage and dance with one of the beautiful dancers, so I did. Although I think I was dancing more the hula instead of traditional Balinese dancing... Hey at least I tried though!
This morning I went on a biking tour of rural Bali. My guide, Gaday, showed me his wedding photo and told me a lot about Balinese family culture. For example, families here live together in house complexes made up of five structures. One of those is a temple. Gaday lives with his wife, 2 yr old son, and his mother. Temples are very important here. Each home and even all of the ricefields have their own temple. There are also village temples and public temples. The religion is Hindu. They thank God for the mountain, volcano, earth, and ocean. Everything is a blessing here. They are happy and grateful for everything that they have. We stopped at a village temple where a woman was giving an offering. He took me to a beautiful rice field grown on steps. The ride was mostly downhill but was still a work out! I came back and jumped in my pool. Turns out the water is freezing. Wasn’t feeling too blessed just then. 😂😳
I am staying at the Kayon Resort for three nights. This place is amazing. It’s tucked into the rain forest near Ubud. I got a pool villa next to a waterfall. It’s extremely private. It is quite a trek up to the main level where they have a restaurant. I get my exercise in! I’m having a lot of fun meeting the staff. I haven’t had the opportunity to talk to any other guests yet. Everyone kind of keeps to themselves. I’ve seen one couple, and a family. I know a lot of you were wondering why I traveled solo so far away. I just wanted to get away from everything and go totally outside my comfort zone when I turn 50 years old in a couple days. I’ve been planning this trip for three years now. The only time I get lonely is when I’m in this beautiful room by myself (which actually isn’t that often). It’s made more for romantic trysts then personal reflection- but I have no regrets! Bali is very peaceful and relaxing and I LOVE the food!! ❤️
19 July 2018
I made it! PHEW! Bali is awesome!!! Took some awesome vids on the drive to my resort but Journi won’t let me post them. Photos only. I’ll put them on FB. I’ll be staying at the Kayon Resort in Ubud for the next three nights. It began raining shortly after I got here but it’s still amazing. They greeted me at the car with a flower for my hair. Awesome place! I’ll post pics later. Right now it’s time to catch up some much needed horizontal sleeping. 😴😴😴
Time for some killin-time HKG Airport shopping! Had to try a tea from a place called THE ONE MINUTE GORMET. When I asked the little girl at checkout if it was yummy, I got the customary Asian nod-shrug-non-committal whisper which either means “No clue,” or “What?” I liked it though. Basically just unsweetened brewed tea. Check out these other goodies! If anyone wants anything (like I’m sure my mom wants a waving cat because she LOVES cats [notice the cat with a SMALLER cat in its mouth]), let me know and I’ll try to grab it on the way home! Btw, the prices are HKD Hong Kong Dollars. $380. HKD = $48 USD. So $48 for the cat in the cat.
Hong Kong International Airport is interesting in the fact that that they don’t post boarding gates until the last second. I have a 2 1/2 hour layover so I just picked a gate to sit in and wait. Turns out it has the best imaginable view of the rolling green hills and mountains. Also fun is watching all of the confused Americans (not unlike myself) checking the boarding gate screens that were overhead in front of me. One more thing - there are no boarding groups. So when they start boarding, it’s a free-for-all! 😳
First glimpses (from the plane) of a brand new continent I’ve never been to! I was so excited looking out that tiny window, I was smiling ear-to-ear! Hong Kong (from the airport) is GORGEOUS. The airport is on an island, next to other islands that make up Hong Kong. Hong Kong has more skyscrapers than any other city in the world. (I read that online so it must be true.)
Since it’s a 15 hr flight, I splurged and bought a seat in American’s Premium Economy class. For someone who’s used to flying coach, this is pretty fancy and was everything I’d hoped for - complete with a toiletry set that comes in a leather Cole Haan bag and includes socks. BONUS— this section is only 30% full so no one directly next to me! Unfortunately, the guy a row over decided to fill me in on Business and First Class perks, completely dashing my temporary euphoria. Still, the food in this section is served on china with cloth napkins and real silverware. I’ve decided it’s still a heck of a lot better than coach! Plus I’ve got a great view of the wing. 😜
17 July 2018
How to kill a 6.5 hour layover at LAX? When you DON’T have access to the American Admirals Lounge? Well...
So... I sat next to this dude on the way to LAX. WHOO!! Total eye candy - HELLLOOOO!!! What makes this extra humorous was me trying to get a photo of him without his knowledge. When I finally managed it, it was all I could do to avoid yelling, “SCORE!”
Good ole DFW. Zero layover here. Kind of a good thing. This place is PACKED. Whoa. Btw, thanks to those of you who are actually following me! ☺️
Ha! Flew right over the Beach House on the way out of Springfield. 😎
1st leg of the adventure is underway! Mom and David brought me to the airport and stayed for lunch. Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed —- ready to go!