Sunday, August 31, 2014

A Day in Prague

We left the Frankfurt Airport late yesterday afternoon and drove directly to Prague, in the Czech Republic. We arrived at our pension shortly after midnight, having had some good laughs about how we had to pay for both drinking water as well as for use of the restroom to expel such water.

After breakfast at the pension the next morning, we were off for a full day of exploring Prague.

Looking down onto Prague from the Petrin gardens.

Me and Dilek pose for a selfie.

Flying to Europe

Özgür, Ferit's cousin and Seattle's most eligible bachelor, drove us to the airport early Thursday morning.

Özgür, Ferit, and me.

Two hours later, Ferit and I flew from Seattle to Minneapolis on Sun Country, an airline none of us had heard of. After seven hours of layover in Minneapolis, we then flew to Frankfurt on Condor.

Apparently the huge bag carrying all of the kite gear didn't board the plane in Seattle. That was totally fine by us, as the bag would be put on a flight the next day and delivered directly to the doorstop of Ferit's mom, in Turkey. Sweet! As we wouldn't need the kiting gear until we arrived in Turkey, we were pleased that we wouldn't have to lug this ginormous bag around with us for the next two weeks.

Friday, August 29, 2014

The Adventure Begins -- A Day Early

Ferit and I leave tomorrow morning to spend the next five months in Europe. As such, our adventure technically begins tomorrow. But with some theft and police report excitement today, we can’t help but consider that our adventure has begun one day early.

Before I left for my Sierra-Cascades bike trip in early May, I left all my belongings at a friend’s house for safe-keeping. My belongings will remain at my friend’s house while we travel in Europe. Ferit’s belongings, on the other hand, needed to be stored while we travel.

Ferit found a unit at a storage facility where he could store his belongings. Ferit signed the contract two days ago, and we had already moved two carloads of stuff over to the storage unit.

Around 4:30pm this afternoon, Ferit received a call from the storage facility informing him that the lock for the unit had been “tampered with” and that he should come to the unit to see if anything had been taken. Really? It has only been two days and already the unit has been burglarized?

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Exploring Vancouver Island: A Photo Journal

For twenty-two days in July and August, Ferit and I explored Vancouver Island. Located in the southwest corner of British Columbia, Vancouver Island is the largest island in the Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand. This is a photo journal of our trip.

Some days we camped in campgrounds.
Other days we claimed our own "Private Idahos" in the forest.
This is our bush camping site at the end of a logging road near Port Alberni.
We spent two days/nights here, in our own little heaven.

As one who has always slept in tents mounted on the ground,
getting used to climbing in and out of a car-top tent took a little getting used to...
especially for mid-night tea-pees.

Friday, August 8, 2014

My Shadow Memory

I'm a firm believer that we have an obligation to ourselves (and to the world) to give life to our artistic creations. If we fail to do so, those creations will never exist, and the world won't be nearly as rich for it.

While sitting aside Muchalat Lake, on Vancouver Island, a poem came to me. While I certainly don't consider myself to be a poet, I felt the need to commit the poem to written form. And so I ran back to the campsite to grab a pen and paper. I returned to the lake and quickly scribbled the words from my mind.

While I don't foresee that anything "outwardly monumental" will come of the poem, I do know that the act of bringing the pen to paper enhanced my focus on the present moment. With that focus came a flood of joy and gratitude. For these reasons, this poem is deeply meaningful to me.

Watching the sunset at Muchalat Lake. (August 4, 2014)