50 States! We Made It To Hawaii!

50 States! We Made It To Hawaii!

Well, it’s official. I’m now a member of the 50-state club. A journey that started on a whim, almost 12 years ago when I had a free summer and decided to try and see as much of America as possible finally reached its conclusion when we landed in Hawaii. It’s… a really odd feeling actually. I’m obviously really happy and excited to have reached this point. It’s been almost five years since I was within striking distance, but then fatherhood…

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On The Doorstep

On The Doorstep

So here we are, at the Marriott Residence Inn right outside Los Angeles International Airport. Tomorrow, we board a plane to Hawaii, and I will finally complete a journey I started about 12 years ago. Tomorrow, assuming all goes well, I will finally set foot on my 50th state, which happens to be the 50th state admitted to the United States. Five years after reaching Alaska with Ariel, which was my 49th state (coincidentally the 49th state admitted to the…

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What everyone gets wrong about the Tolkien race discussion

What everyone gets wrong about the Tolkien race discussion

Going to try something a little different for this blog and talk a little bit directly about J.R.R. Tolkien and his works. Generally this blog is focused on travel, specifically adventure travel that is often partially (and sometimes directly) inspired by Tolkien’s writings or adaptations of them. But with all the controversy about the new Amazon Prime Rings Of Power series (much of it in bad faith), I wanted to weigh in about the issue of Tolkien and race, which…

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Bermuda: Take Two

Bermuda: Take Two

Last time we were in Bermuda, it was just the two of us and I lamented the fact that we really didn’t get a whole lot of time to just relax. There was just so much to see and do, that we felt compelled to do it all. And I thought we DID do it all. Well it turns out that we really didn’t! First of all we missed out on the largest fort on the island, when we arrived…

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On Pandemic Travel And Getting Back In The Game

On Pandemic Travel And Getting Back In The Game

So this year we resolved to get back to plane travel and go back to doing the things we love best – going on adventures in far off places that cannot be reached by car. After over two years of not being in an airport, it was a little bit of culture shock. Jacob is also much older than the last time we travelled somewhere with him all way back in 2019 when we went to Toronto and Niagara Falls,…

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Back At It In Bermuda

Back At It In Bermuda

Well it finally happened. Ariel and I are back to plane travel for the first time since our pre-pandemic trip to Turks and Caicos in 2019. And here we are, back in Bermuda, a place we did not really expect to come back to so soon, if ever! The past two years have been pretty tough for us, as evidenced by the lack of blog posts. Thankfully we weathered the pandemic quite well physically and financially, but for the first…

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It came to me on my birthday, my precious… Unboxing the incredible limited-edition Tolkien-illustrated version of Lord of the Rings

It came to me on my birthday, my precious… Unboxing the incredible limited-edition Tolkien-illustrated version of Lord of the Rings

Well not EXACTLY on my birthday, but the day before! And amazingly it was several days early. Folks I am so incredibly thrilled to share with you that I managed to snag one of the limited edition, UK-only, JRR Tolkien illustrated (!!!!!), leather-bound, single volume, Lord of the Rings. This wasn’t even supposed to be out until two days from now, but somehow my shipment came today! Look at this!!! Note that the type, in addition to your typical black…

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A Lost Year

A Lost Year

Last year, at this time I was on my way home from a (last ever?) business trip in the far reaches of Virginia. Heading home after a day of meetings, I stopped at a local Target to pick up some Clorox wipes and Emergen-C. From there I headed to Shenandoah National Park to watch the sunset. I remember standing there, watching the sun go down by myself. As the sun sank behind the Blue Mountains, I had my own sinking…

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The Darkest Day Of The Year

The Darkest Day Of The Year

As happens every year, December 21st has the distinction of having the most hours of darkness out of any other calendar day. It is also the setting of one of my favorite poems – Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening, by Robert Frost. A lot of people find this time depressing, especially those that suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder. And to be sure, there is a lot to feel depressed about right now, with a global pandemic that is…

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The Last Stage: A Final Day On The Road

The Last Stage: A Final Day On The Road

The final day of my journey started quite similarly to many other days from the prior two months. I woke up alone, in a dingy motel, had a quick bite (if available), and hopped into my car with a cup of coffee, and went off in search of new things to see over the course of the next 12-16 hours of moving around. This morning was different though. By this point in the journey, I had been living as a…

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