Open up Tea bag anchor wings up over a cup, to stabilize the filter fold the anchors to look like wings. (Not mentioned in the video).
Tear open center and make a wide opening
Pour over hot water into the grounds. Careful water don’t spill all over. It’s ok if the bottom of the tea bad is immersed. This will make your coffee stronger.
When it’s cool enough to drink you are ready tp go.
Also available on Amazon. Video By #StacyPoulos @postcardtravelers
Product details: PREMIUM SINGLE ORIGIN PAPUA NEW GUINEA MAPLE SYRUP • RED OAK • DARK CHOCOLATE Be transported to a far away island with this classic coffee from Papua New Guinea, delicate sweetness complemented with flavors of red oak and dark chocolate. * Region: Eastern Highlands * Altitude: 4757 ft.
Adventure friends here are some great must have important travelers gear! Sorry about the motorcycle / travel hair! LOL Anyway I guess my bag is not water proof. It’s water resistant. I found links from my affiliates….
Watch the video I give you a tour of my products I use when riding. Use at your own risk. Consult professionals.
❤️🎒 Duffel Bag turns Backpack from REI Co-op Big Haul 60 Duffel I love mine! The straps can easily be tucked away. It offers great water protection but apparently is not waterproof as I said in the video. It’s a soft plastic like material. I don’t like that harder water proof plastic material, this gives more. Most airlines require a piece of carry-on luggage to be no bigger than 45 linear inches (L + W + H) to meet carry-on size restrictions. This can vary check with your airline ahead of time. If you don’t fill it up, you squeeze down . . . . those extra 5.4 inches. There are a lot of heavy duty loops on the sides for tie down hooks and / or ropes. I don’t buy bags anymore that aren’t water resistant. I also think it helps keep the bugs out. How every this lovely orange attracts them lol. But I had to have it, thanks mom! XOXO http://bit.ly/2NE3XfI
❤️🏍️🔌 iClever Jump Start thingie. This was a life saver!! I had to jump my bike 4 times in one day! The bartender came out of the bar with this. Thank you! I think all businesses / every one should have one to help people. It also charges cell phones, laptops and ipads! Anyway I found it on Amazon. It shows a motorcycle 12 V. [PD 30W Input & Output] iClever 20000mAh Car Jump Starter (up to 8L gas or 6.5L diesel engine), Power Delivery 30W Power Bank with Dual USB 3.0 Quick Charging for Nintendo Switch and MacBook… on Amazon. PS the hard part was attaching the clamps, as usual! Harley doesn’t give you room on the battery to grab the battery terminal. I just had someone hold it on it. (not exactly safe) MAKE SURE YOU CAN USE IT WITH YOUR BIKE! There is another way to jump start a battery on a motorcycle when I learn I’ll show you too.
❤️❤️🔌🔌 PocketJuice 2 and 3 out lets. This is a different Model. Mine is older. This one has a plug in thing, even better. I keep it with me all the time! It’s better to have one the size of you phone. I try never to leave with out it. https://amzn.to/2XI5NQB
❤️🔒 Carabiner Combination Lock I made my own device with this adding the wire. It’s really to prevent people from cutting and running. I made the same thing when I went to Europe. I still have it, I just forgot the combination. 😎 https://amzn.to/2YrK2BD
🔒 Make your own lock with wire rope and do-dad thingies. Wire Rope Thimble / Loop-End Cable thingies. Here’s a kit. The size all need to be the same. And if you use the Master Lock Carabiner the thingie needs to fit the bottom loop. Technically you can make it any size and put it through the big loop. https://amzn.to/2KVOG88
❤️🔒 Blah, blah blah. If you don’t want to go through all that bullshit you can have a pre-made one that is coated. Heavy Duty Black Combination Lock Cable | Best Security PIN Locking Chain.
There is nothing like a full moon to uncover what lies beneath the surface of the earth. I’m not going to lie, I’ve been learning as I go about this phenomenon called ‘tides’ since I have been kayaking and was basically stuck in the mud trying to get to the shore walking my boat in mud up to my knees. It’s something I knew about but never really understood it’s wonder. And then there’s King tides. Which is an even greater water level. Which I took notice when I was kayaking in Alameda and couldn’t get close to my kayak partner because the current was so great and I was tired from a long day of kayaking. So it’s not advisable to be kayaking or boating, or even being near the edge of the water because of sneaker waves. But at low tied it’s a great time to see what has been under the water all this time. During this King tide the water level reached 7+ feet at highest tide in the SF Bay Area. For me this mean there are a few ships including one from the 1800’s I have to go see at it’s lowest tide. This King tide will last just a few days.
Unfortunately the lowest tide had been at sunset, and with the clouds almost impossible to see, but I DID! I was at Point San Pablo at 5pm ish and on the road looking into Point San Pablo Harbor and off to the left of the harbor you can see the shape of what appears to be a large wood ship. What is left is just the frame that look like a fence of just posts.
Here are some important tips that will educate even just a hiker or walker along any Bay or shore in the world! No matter where you go. And if you are traveling, you are most likely planning on being near water! So be aware, knowledge is power.
Parking. With out looking at a tide chart, you can logically look at the ground and see where the water line is on low and high tide. Usually the water line is pretty apparent. Know that if it is low tide and your car is far away from the water. It can possible be submerged when you get back! Or the road you came in will be submerged as well. Almost for sure when there is a King tide.
Kayaking and boating and being stuck in the mud. Have no fear. Know that every 6 hours the Tide changes direction. Before it dose it will sit for a hour before it makes it way back called a slack tide. Most the time you don’t know the tide is even moving. So it can creep up on you. Lets say you planned to get out of the water and there is 20 feet of mud. You can wait it out cut it will eventually fill up.
Wikipedia Ebb and Flow
“Ebb and flow (also called ebb and flood and flood drain) are two phases of the tide or any similar movement of water. The ebb is the outgoing phase, when the tide drains away from the shore; and the flow is the incoming phase when water rises again. The terms are also common in figurative use…” – Wikipedia
“Slack water, also known as ‘the stand of the tide’, is a short period in a body of tidal water when the water is completely unstressed, and there is no movement either way in the tidal stream, and which occurs before the direction of the tidal stream reverses…” – Wikipedia
More incite: When you see a boat in the mud tipped over, have no fear. It’s most likely the owner misjudged the tides and soon the water will be back to fill up.
Boater rules. It is boaters curtsy and I think law that you’re never supposed to pass by a boater in need of help. [article] You could save their life, even if at the moment they seam to be fine.
Currents. Currents are whats happening underneath. When you get near large objects like bridges, boulders, etc. The water rushes more and is stronger to get around those objects. Think of the SF Bay as a big bottle of water with a small neck (the golden Gate Bridge) that poor into another bottle of water and it takes 6 hours to pour on to the other bottle. As it pours back into the SF Bay it fills all the little bays as it goes back out to sea it’s sucks the water from the shore line leaving sometimes 4 to 20 feet of mud depending where you are at. This is world wide. If you don’t want to be stuck in the mud, plan on coming out of the water at high tide. However, you also want to think about the direction of the current. It’s a delicate balance of knowing the current. Sometimes, excuse my language but it can be a bitch going against the current! So there are 2 known factors tides and current. The wild card is weather / wind factor. You can go with a current but against the wind. And honestly I don’t know what is worse. And then there is light. Ya, you got it planned out on paper, but what about sunset? Will you be able to see when you get out? And if it’s cloudy or near mountains or cliffs you can loose hours of good light! Whew, thats a lot to think about. But you should always think about it!! One time when I was in Zion National Park we didn’t start a hike until 3pm, I know, duh!! Not my fault. Anyway, even though we could see at the top of the mountain. Walking back it was in the straight up dark! The mountains basically had us in a crack in the ground. Luckily I was prepared and had a head lamp light in my arsenal of stuff. Petzel is a great bran. Always buy your adventure gear at REI, I recommend becoming a member worth the bucks. You’ll get it back in lots of lifetime savings! They are our sponsor and affiliate because I love them!
A cheaper and great option is this little head lamp that I clip on my hat. Best thing since sliced bread! I love it. I have two one for me and on for a adventure partner. They are usually never prepared. I always wear a baseball cap. If you don’t, it’s not the best option. For me, it is!
I also have one of these clipped on my belt hiking belt. And life jacket. I think it’s great to have at all times. Not exactly a flash ligt but in a emergency it can help guide you hime. However I don’t know how water proof it is. Just don’t be cheap about these items!
Maps or better yet officially called “Charts” A NOAA chart will show you how deep the water is at it normal low level. It will also show ship wrecks the are submerged so boaters with engines don’t run into them. For me it’s a place to explore and how I found may locations of shipwrecks. They are free on line. If your a boater / kayaker I recommend buying the one of the area you frequent. For me it’s like a treasure map!
I will up date this blog as I find my shipwrecks during the King Tides.
May Adventure Map. Zoom into Ocean Beach Area, Hunters point and Richmond bridge area on the Richmond side and Point San Pablo. There are layers at the top you can turn on more layers and turn off layers.
Lights! 5 of the most fantastic products for RV, trailer, campers, boat owners, off the grid, emergency preparer and 3rd world country independent survivors. …And fancy people with unique tastes. Fairy lights that are powered by USB! And Lamps / power banks, rechargeable by solar. Why do I like ‘fairy lights’? They are pretty. They have a warm feel to them. And they give a warm feel to a room, tent or hut. As you will see I also made a lamp with Fairy lights to go with my candle holder. They don’t take a lot of power to run, are water proof. They are the best thing since sliced bread! Plus I show my USB powered lamp.
100 Fairy lights USB powered under 10 bucks. There are 2 options one with USB, and one that takes batteries. It’s silly not to go with the USB option. You can always rotate USB type power banks to keep your products fresh with power. See video. I have had battery powered for many years. I never know when it’s going to run out. With USB I can just switch them out.
Large Power Banks, I bought this over a year ago, I love it. I can power my laptop with it.
Here is another multi purpose USB charger and jump starter that you MUST HAVE! I discovered it when I broke down on my Motorcycle it jump started it 4 times… it’s a Harley. I did another blog about it. Something you want to bring with you small enough to carry on a motorcycle. It also has a flash light. The most inconvenient part is they are hard to get around a batterie.
This is a great usb charger that you can also re-charge by the sun! Why not have one on had that is solar power. You hope never to really need off the grid, but you have to love knowing you will have it. Keep it in the car incase you end up one of those stories. You were best prepared. Its’s also very reasonably priced. 2 USB out lets. And had a built in flash light. If you were stranded, this is perfect. It is not ‘light’ for backpackers. Logically it has 4 panels so it can charge faster that a 1 and 2 panel.
These next products are from REI. Before I go on, anytime you can buy from REI I would, it’s absolutely worth the membership price. You get 20% off coupons ever year and for signing up. I think 2 or 4 coupons a year. Every dollar you spend on full price items, you get dividends back! When REI haves deep discounted garage sales only REI members are welcome. What I like most about being a member is there 1 year return policy. You don’t need a receipt, they keep you on file. Join for 20 bucks. You’ll start off by getting a 20% coupon in your email or mail box. Join: http://bit.ly/2SPI8Z5
GoalZero Lamp with big results. Rechargeable with USB connection or Solar USB at REI Goal Zero Lighthouse Core Electric Lantern & USB Power Hub (about 50.00 well worth the money invested). Ps you can also barrow the power to charge devices.
Now if you bought under your membership you are earning while you spend!
Thanks for listening. If you have related items you want me to try and like to review send it to Postcard Travelers Po Box 20608, Castro Valley, CA 94546 Make sure you fan my facebook, youtubeand instagram. How you like our choices make sure you see the video and by through our affiliate and sponsors. I never endorse products I don’t like.
My favorite time of year again! The Most Exciting Travel Show Returns to the Bay Area and I will be there to get the scoop. Tickets are available on line or at the door. My mentor Rick Steve’s will be there to name a few. The interesting thing about going to expo events like these, is how excited you get when you’re surrounded by things you love. Who doesn’t love to travel? This show is at the Santa Clara Convention Center but there all over the USA. Click on the book!
SF / Bay Area: May 21-22, 2022 + Other locations and dates.
Event Description; The Bay Area Travel & Adventure Show is where travel lovers come for travel inspiration, expert information and fun, cultural interaction. It’s where you’ll discover thousands of authentic travel experiences and speak directly to the travel experts who can get you there, give you the inside scoop, and save you money on exclusive travel deals.
Host, Rick Steves’ Europe, Samantha Brown, Travel Channel Host, and Pauline Frommer, Editorial Director of the Frommer’s Guides and Publisher.
I’m always astonished how much rich History, or HerStory, there is right under our noses in the San Francisco Bay Area. I explored the waterfront area of Richmond by land and sea in search of what was once the largest Winery in the world when the California Wine Association moved from San Francisco to Point Molate Richmond after the San Francisco Earthquake in 1906. It remained the title of “World’s largest winery” for 12 years!! (1907–1919). Until prohibition crushed it’s demise and was shut down in 1919. Really, THE largest? Over Italy and France? Yep, it’s true. Now it’s an abandoned ghost town once called “Winehaven California” (It is in the U.S. National Register of Historic Places) and it’s castle remains in tact north of the Point Molate Richmond. Stenmark Drive is the last exit before you get on the Richmond Bridge and it is littered with a extraordinary and riveting California History.
If you walk on Pt. Molate Park Beach facing the water Winehaven would be to your right, around the corner less than a mile away, you can’t walk to it on the beach, but you can see it. If continue to drive on Stenmark Dr you can see the backside through the fence from the road. There is a bit of a battle to what they are going to do with the area. In my humble opinion, it is rare to be able to boast the ‘largest in the world’ of anything, let alone the most prestigious commodity of wine! So. I say restore the castle and keep boasting! But there’s more.
Winehaven 2036-2040 Stenmark Dr. Near Point Molate Beach Park Richmond, CA
From that same beach, to your left walk 1,000 feet towards the Bridge to Point Castro and there is a 200 foot shipwreck, with half sticking out of the water even at high tide. (There are actually 3, if you look at Google Earth. 5 If you look at lowest tide.) With the completion of the bridge in 1956 the car-ferry service and inner city railway that resided there eventually rendered the pier useless and became a fishing pier. After years of lack of maintenance, it is now a barley recognizable battered pier. This once thriving corner of the Bay, is now a water front ghost town, mostly restricted from the public. For me, it’s a photographers dream. There is a public park you can enjoy where you can see the shipwreck. A 160-foot medium-endurance cutter patrol vessel ‘The USCGC Hermes WPC-109’ it was a Thetis-class coastal patrol ship in service from 1932 to 1958. It was assigned to San Pedro, California, and spent World War II watching for Japanese submarines, as well as escorting convoys out of the harbor. After the war, it was used as a stationary training ship. And was to serve as an enforcement vessel for Prohibition. A model is on display at the LA Maritime Museum. Hermes also served to deliver an important marble Cabrillo monument January 1937 to the San Miguel Island in the Southern California. In honor of Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo (Portuguese: João Rodrigues Cabrilho; c. 1497 – January 3, 1543) who was the First European explorer in California where he laid to rest. And yet another part of our Rich History.
The Hermes vessel was decommissioned November 2, 1948 and sold May 16, 1958. Eventually laid to rest where it is now, Point Molate. She still sits with her bow in the air above water, surrounded by unnamed shipwrecks beside her, slightly below the water line. You can see them on google earth, and on a lowest tide you can see them even more. It is a dangerous area with pilings sticking up.
Just know it is windy out there facing the Golden Gate. If it’s a date night you can start here and work your way back to end up at the wineries near, The Riveter Rosie Museum. To me it’s crazy this area is not as explored as it should be. And I pray they do not develop this but to bring back what was there.
Point Richmond Pier
Next stop is Miller / Knox Regional Shoreline at Point Richmond on Canal Blvd. At the very point, is a gutted out building. And a fishing pier which. Along side the new fishing pier is a dilapidated pier that used to be a commuter ferry service to the San Francisco Ferry. You can see where the train rails lead to the terminal which now are broken and lead underwater. I actually kayaked under it. Besides being broken-down and battered, it is clear there was a recent fire that further damages the battered pier. For me, it was the highlight of my 2nd kayak trip. It is said, it is at ‘Ford Point’ however you can’t find it on the map. Something I have found over time, places are renamed and it really depends on who you ask. It’s name came from the historic Ford Plant. But you put in ‘Point Richmond’ and you will find it. There is a whole walking tour of the area with points of interests. Across from the Museum is R&B Cellars where you can wine and cider taste and have a bit to eat while you enjoy the Bay view.
Now it’s time to warm up and get out of the wind. Working your way back go to see the inside of the SS Red Oak Victory ($10 donation to get in, mostly Closes at 2pm). I have not been inside yet, however I have been under the massive destroyer it in a kayak. It’s A original ship made by the Rosie The Riveters. If you aren’t familiar who Rosie is, during WWII all the available men were summoned to fight the war with no one left to build the Ships and Airplane’s. So women were summoned to come work in the shipyards. There is a famous print by Norman Rockwell that advertised “You can do it” to encourage women to join the movement where the women, who other wise were expected to be housewives were summoned to work in the shipyards. Back in those days it was ludicrous a woman would do a “man’s job”—even if they wanted to. Rivets are basically like ‘a nut and bolt’ a all in one, permanent mechanical fastener that holds metals sheets together to make airplanes, ships, bridges and such. They did more than assembled them with rivets, they welded and did all types of non-traditional jobs. It was war-time and Richmond area was the largest producer of war time products. The rural City of Richmond exploded. Now the whole area is dedicated to preserving this HerStory.
After seeing the ship, go to the Rosie The Riveter Museum, it’s very tactile with life size people to give you a sense of that time. Maybe even go home with a lunch pail. Especially if you have kids, they should see how woman contributed to the war effort. The Museum is free but if you can spare it, donations are always appreciated.
Now that you’ve had a day of HerStory, reward yourself at the Assemble Restaurant you basically get to eat and drink in the boiler room of the Ford Assemble plant.
Assemble Restaurant @ The Craneway Pavilion, 1414 Harbour Way S, Richmond, CA 94804
Now you have a choice to call it a day and watch the sunset there, or go back to see the sunset over a Pirate Harbor. Yep, a pirate harbor only you me, John Wayne and and a few others know about. If you continue on back on Stenmark Dr. past Pt. Molate Park Beach make a right onto a dirt road to San Pablo Yacht Harbor or they like to say San Pablo Pirate Harbor. They have developed the area in such a what that its very artiest friendly environment.
Follow the ‘Point San Pablo (Pirate) Yacht Harbor sign. There are is a public bathroom and public kayak launch. But this little eccentric cove has a long History. Is was originally made by By Captain Raymond H. Clark in 1939 lined up about 9 ships on both sides to create a breakwater Harbor eventually overtime the ships were covered with dirt. And yes, that’s what you walk on.. shipwrecks. Fascinating. At sunset, at least on this day was a golden calm. At one point in History that area was the setting of the movie ‘Blood Alley’ with John Wayne and Lauren Bacall!
Update! There is a quaint restaurant you’ll have to figure out what they have there now. Here is a link: https://www.pspharbor.com/ I promise you explore this area by kayak, car or foot, you will not be disappointed!
Point San Pablo Yacht (Pirate) Harbor
Many buried ship wrecks
1900 Western Drive, Richmond, CA 94801
1955 ‘Blood Alley’ with John Wayne and Lauren Bacall partly filmed at Point San Pablo Harbor.
What!! Some of Alaska’s Inside Passage under 60 dollars! Not kidding. Travel and Adventure Show Video
At the top of my Bucket List: Alaska. When I looked into it, there is just ridiculous prices to experience it. So I buy lottery tickets and hope for the best. Postcard Travelers is all about crafting your own experience to get the best out of life and travel. Looking for the postcard picture perfect experience, maximizing my budget. When I met Lorene Palmer of Alaska’s Inside Passage I told her ‘You are my new best friend!” And pulled over my colleagues at Comcast Chabot 27 to interview her. You must listen to what she says. [Video Link]
You can go from some of the most insanely beautiful locations in the world… the Inside Passage for under $60.00. What!! That’s right. Like we have a public bus and BART system, Alaska has a waterway transit system ‘The Alaska Marine Highway System’ (AMHS). It only makes since for the local community to be able to get from one town to the next. Not like you can drive over a glacier to get home. Example Juneau to Sitka is a 9 hour ferry ride around $53.00! Woot, woot, woot!
You can thank me later. Come to find out my mom took this transit system when she went to Alaska and drove her camper on the boat a bit more than just going on the ride. There are cabins you can sleep in as well. My fantasy is to, of course, kayak around the glaciers. I never even thought bringing my own car or motorcycle was a possibility. So I am in fantasy heaven working out the details! In the meantime, here is the interview with Eddie Hazzard (Chabot 27) at the Travel & Adventure Show and link to http://www.alaskasinsidepassage.com/ please let us know about your experience if you happen to go before me. Tips please! XOXO
One Month to Live Author Patricia Schultz gives us 5 places to go. -PostcardTravelers
Patricia Schultz is the Author of the #1 New York Times bestsellers; 1000 places to see before you die. She gives us five Hot Tips if you only have a month to live. You wont believe what she says! Host; Photographer, Filmmaker Stacy Poulos www.PostcardTravelers.com
Get the book: http://1000places.com/
Music; Connie M. Gaxiola
OMG, OMG, OMG! Where do I start. Well for me I measure ‘my’ success, in the places I have gone. So when I sit and watch a guy like Rick Steve’s on TV, I can’t help but admire his life enriched by travel. I barley got through the door of the Travel and Adventure Show, and he walks up to ask a question. There I am, in the back of my mind thinking of my bucket list and Rick Steve’s name is on it of people to meet, dumbfounded on what to say to ‘the guy’ of travel. I introduce myself, tell him how I admire him and his show and ask if we can get a selfie. So the 6 foot somethin’ obliges, takes my cell phone to take the photo-since he had the longer arms. So there we were; Junior travel vlogger and master travel guru, THE guy. I didn’t know what hit me. That‘s how my day started at the show. Being in a place that everyone shared the same passion to travel, i.e. get the best out of life. Was something special. From Expeditions you can only dream to be on, to small town business associations presenting their towns unique adventure experience, from wine and dine, to white rapid adventures, rock climbing and many more. What a job to have, giving people an awakening of life. Experiences people will remember the rest of their life.
The Most Exciting Travel Show Returns to the Bay Area and I will be there to get the scoop. Tickets available on line or at the door. My mentor Rick Steves will be there to name a few. The interesting thing about going to expo events like these is how excited you get when you’re surrounded by things you love. Who doesn’t love to travel? Santa Clara Convention Center.
February 7-8, 2015
Event Description; The Bay Area Travel & Adventure Show is where travel lovers come for travel inspiration, expert information and fun, cultural interaction. It’s where you’ll discover thousands of authentic travel experiences and speak directly to the travel experts who can get you there, give you the inside scoop, and save you money on exclusive travel deals.
Host, Rick Steves’ Europe, Samantha Brown, Travel Channel Host, Peter Greenberg, Emmy Award-winning investigative reporter and producer and CBS News Travel
Innies & Outies, Onezy-Twozy’s Frome the book Life In A Nutshell by Stacy Poulos
Some people have “innies” and some people have “outies” (belly buttons). It used to bother me that I had an “outie,” boys have “outies.” As I got older and more womanly like, I developed an “innie.” Basically, I got fatter and my stomach grew around my belly button. Now it bothers me I have an “innie.” Which brings me to another pointless point about “number one” and “number two”. It’s very traumatizing for a child not to know which is which. This is one of those tricky questions children ask you outside of the class room, “do you need to go ‘number one’ or ‘number two?” After awhile, I realized you don’t say “number two” under any circumstance, because I realized that meant you had to go “poop.” And that’s far too much information and ammunition for a child to have on you. Growing up can be traumatizing. It seemed as though everyone else got a manual that I didn’t. Even the how to ask embarrassing questions of other kids. I always seemed to have the wrong answer, I was a target for them. Going to the bathroom has been a stressful thing for me since elementary school. Even in college I would have people run the water so I could concentrate on peeing. If you had to use a butt gasket, the person in the next stall would know what you were up to.
Somehow I slipped through the cracks and never knew what was the true answer was until I was about thirty-four. By high school I was too far gone to ask, and I never trusted a friend well enough to ask either. I guess my mom never covered the ‘onezy-twozy’ thing because she called it like it was, where ever it was… “Honey, do you have to take a shit?” Not that turning to my grandparents was any better. I suppose it was passed down from generation to generation, because I recall my Nana saying the same thing. If you are a parent, even if you call it like it is, make sure your children know the difference! So here I am breaking away to Europe with little knowledge about the way things are out there, concerned about special European toilets spitting water at my ass.
Not too many know what goes on in my head. But for someone who didn’t do well in school, I think about a lot of fine details. I think a lot has to do with the combination of my mom and older brother. My mom’s a freak. If you have a cold, she doesn’t want you to touch her or anything that comes in contact with her. And my older brother likes to point out microscopic stuff. Like when he showed me a close up of my favorite “Blue Cheese” and the “blue” was mold. I haven’t touched it since. When he talks about any subject, he says it with such authority and conviction as though he invented it himself. That’s why we called him “Scout Master” as a young teenager. When I would ask him, “How do you know?” He would always reply, “I just know.” So I am very aware about microscopic things. Like did you know flies go “number two” and puke every time they land? That’s what the Scout Master joyfully told me. So I freak out when one lands on me or anything they touch. Whenever I see, one I’m self-conscious of where they are located, and I sanitize what they touch or not eat if they land on my food. My dad said that you catch people’s colds if you shake their hands. Hearing this leaves an imaginative three dimensionally visual person paranoid.
Before starting my adventure to Europe (the other side of the world to me), I went to the Pride parade in San Francisco with some friends on BART. Eventually we got separated,but I still managed to have a good time on my own. A few minutes before midnight I realized I only had five minutes to get to BART for the last train home. Well! In a panic, I ran out of this club looking for a cab to get me to the BART station. I had no time to wait so I ran like crazy to BART and caught the last one. Whew! Fortunately I already had prepaid for the ticket because that takes me a long time to figure out how to get the ticket out of the machine. Next thing you know I woke up forty minutes later at the end of the line in Pleasanton, eight miles from my stop (Castro Valley) where I should have gotten off. In a daze, I asked about a train going back. They said it was the last one of the evening. So there I was, at one A.M. in the morning, two days away from leaving for another country and I have to call my mom for a ride home because I missed my exit. Nothing like trying to make my mother worried, on top of worrying about me leaving the country. “What the *@&%!, I can’t believe you fell asleep on the F*@&%ing train!”, she says. Her way of encouragement and parental advice. My younger brother picks up the phone at the same time. They argue about what an idiot I am. My brother hangs up. My mom says, “What are you going to do in Europe?” I said, “Look at the bright side, I’m not calling you from Germany needing a ride. Deana will look out for me. Besides, our tickets are no good unless we are together.” Extra insurance! As I sat in the cold waiting for my mommy, I thought, “What if I was in Germany?” Yeeks! I tried not to think about it.
It just so happens there was a lot of coverage in the news that Europeans rip off tourists. The news show 20/20 did a report on how people stole wallets, etc,. Even though people never really talk about Europe, it seems everyone I talked to, talked about the pickpockets, and how they come up and cut the straps of your purse and run. Considering I’m bringing $3,000.00 worth of camera equipment, etc. I prepared myself. I was as prepared as I could be, I thought. I had reinforced my purse straps with cable wire so no one could cut it and run. I had an alarm I could attach to my bag and a chair, if anyone tried to move it, it would go off. I had mini locks on all my zippers, as well as a money belt. A metal cord went from my camera to whatever I hooked it on with a lock on the end, so it wouldn’t leave without me knowing. I had a warm sleeping bag, blow up pillows, eye patches, sanitizing wash, a mini first aid kit, a flash light, two alarms, two watches, one watch with three time zones and an alarm, two money calculator converters with alarm clocks, a waterproof container for my passport, as well as many other mini gadgets. I scanned the girls and my ID’s, passports, and our tickets and burned them onto a mini CD as big as a business card and kept it with me, and one at home in case we lost it. I was covered, and I knew what “number one” and “number two” was. I also had a lot of room on my VISA card to charge my way through Europe and home again. But I had nothing that would prevent me from getting lost or separated. I bought three walkie talkies so we could find each other in a two mile range. We lost one before we got on the air plane.
Date: June 29, 2001. By Stacy Poulos v4 Published in “Life In A Nutshell” 2008.
There is one simple word to describe Kauai: beautiful. Even when there is rain there is beauty because the sun gently passes through the Kauai precipitation creating an enormous and vibrant rainbow that can easily fill the sky. The wind is constant and welcoming, fore without it visitors would be miserably hot. The mountain scenery is filled with lush, bright greens. The water is vast with a multitude of colors and clarity. One can’t help but embrace the beauty and gain a sense of gratefulness for living.
We managed to do a lot, relax a lot and allow all our stress to go by the wayside. The first day we simply took a ten minute stroll to the beach and flew a kite. My girlfriend is an exceptional kite operator. If you have never seen a skilled kite flyer then you are in for a treat. It was amazing to watch this little kite scream across the sky and twirl with ease. This is an example of what Kauai will give you: an appreciation for simplicity. While trick kite flying takes skill, watching and being exhilarated takes simplicity.
Day two we hiked a slightly challenging trail called the Kalalau Trail on the Na Pali coast which led to wonderful beach with amazing surf. The people you will meet on this trail are diverse. From locals to newlyweds to basic tourists like us. Day three we rode rented bikes to a vista point in Waimea Canyon which is considered the Grand Canyon of Hawaii. There we witnessed nature’s awesome creativity and a very cute pigmy goat. Day four we kayaked the Hanalei river. Day five was an exceptional morning of snorkeling in Puipu where we saw dozens of unique sea creatures with amazing neon colors. Day six was a trip to a local monument called Spouting Hole. A vista point where visitors watch water spray violently through a natural hole in the lava rock. Another case of simplicity. As each wave was thrust though the hole and sprayed sometimes 15 feet in the air there was an enormous sound, almost like a whale blowing air through its air hole, only louder. As onlookers to nature’s simplicity, we would all cheered in excitement with each spray.
Every evening we feasted on wine and gourmet food in our rented home. Kauai offers many unique seafood delicacies such as: Ahi, Mahi-Mahi and Opakapaka, or pink snapper. A wonderful treat because these types of fish are difficult to find on the mainland. In addition, you will have access to many unique and flavorful fresh fruits such as pineapple, mango and papaya.
If you are one to avoid exercise while on vacation then you would do well for shopping and dinning action in the town of Hanalei. There you will find several big name resorts such as the Sheraton which offer many non-exercise activities on site. In addition, Hanalei offers many other activities, for example, a helicopter flight through Waimea Canyon or a dinner cruise around the island.
Kauai has something for everyone. It’s not Waikiki, as it is much slower and there are virtually no big cities. Kauai is also not as crowded and yet not desolate either. So if you are looking for beauty, simplicity and paradise then visit Kauai.
Tips for Keeping Kauai Travel Cheap!
I found there are many options for keeping the spending down in Kauai. The total cost for my seven day trip to Kauai was $553.00. This was inclusive of air faire; house, car, bike and kayak rental; food; wine and miscellaneous. With a little forethought, you can do it to. Here’s how:
Keep your airfare low
We flew stand-by on a companion pass because my cousin works for the airlines. The cost is 10% of a full faire coach ticket for that day, thus my round trip air faire was approximately $100.00 total. Flying stand-by is a double edge sword because on one hand you could be bumped to the next flight, yet on the the other hand you can be bumped to first class. In fact, we flew first class both ways because we chose flights that were not full and flew during off season. Thus increasing our probability of being bumped to first class.
You can also save up those frequent flyer miles for a free ticket. If you are a business traveler this is not too difficult. For us cheap average civilians, accumulating frequent flyer miles is somewhat of a challenge. However, it can be done through the use of any major airline frequent flyer credit card. Use your credit card whenever possible. The trick is to pay it off at the end of every month. I have a girlfriend who was able to purchase a round trip ticket to Sweden by using her airline frequent flyer credit card for all her purchases for one year. I’m talking everything from a mocha to an oil change.
Choose to fly either at the beginning or end of the an off season. Then you will still be able to enjoy the tail end or beginning of lower air faires.
Rent a house instead of staying in a hotel
Rent a house and invite several of your fun friends and split the cost. My group of six each paid $170.00 for the entire week. With two couples and two single people, we each had our own beds in our own rooms (the two single people shared a room). One could easily pay $170.00 each night in a hotel in Kauai or anywhere in Hawaii. I suggest you call Kauai Vacation Rentals at 800-367-5025. Ranging from $600.00 to $3000.00 per week you can see pictures of their properties via their Web site. The house we rented was huge and comfortable. It had a lovely view of the ocean and Waimea Canyon from the living room, kitchen and the lanai (a Hawaiian deck). This house was a ten minute walk to the beach and we paid only $800.00 for the week-much cheaper than a hotel.
Bring your own wine
It’s well worth the extra effort to buy a case of wine and lug it on the plane. Remember, you won’t have to take it back. You will pay about $10.00 more per bottle in Kauai and your selection will be very limited. In fact, all food and wine is more expensive in Hawaii because they must ship the majority of it in from the mainland. So vacationer BE AWARE.
Cook your own food
Eating out is very expensive in Kauai or anywhere in Hawaii for that matter. For example, a simple hamburger, no fries, will cost you about $8.50. Cooking your own food as much as possible will save you a ton of money. You can cook simple or elaborate depending upon your preference. The fun part of cooking in Kauai is having access to unique seafood and fruits that are not readily available on the mainland.
Choose activities that don’t require a guide
You can save a lot of money by doing your own thing. For example, we spent the day kayaking for a $20.00 kayak rental fee. The gentleman at the rental place gave us suggestions of where to go, how long it would take and the level of skill required for each destination, and a kayak rack for our car for no extra charge.You can hike, walk, sit on the beach, snorkel, or visit breathtaking vista points all for free.
With a little planning you can cut your vacation costs tremendously.