Do you believe in fate or is life filled with choices where coincidences happen?
Last summer, my daughter, Courtney, studied in Barcelona, Spain. My husband, Danny, and I planned to pick her up in July and travel around France and England on our way back to the States. This trip depended on how quickly I healed after my double boobectomy. Our three week vacation would start five weeks after the first surgery.
I had some priorities. Since the book I wrote takes place in the Côte d’Azur, I wanted to re-explore the area. In my paranormal thriller, the protagonist has to solve the dark mystery surrounding her brother-in-law, Nico, and his estate. I’ve never known anyone named Nico, but the name seemed to fit.
The view from the cacti gardens in Eze.
From the South of France, we planned to drive to Paris. It was ten hours away from Antibes. If we stopped halfway, we could explore another city. We studied a map and found Lyon. It was our Omaha, Nebraska when road tripping from Boulder to Wisconsin. Okay. It’s not, but it is a halfway point. We would stay there July 17th and 18th. Continue reading
While staying in the French Quarter, my husband, Danny, and I rented bikes and rode to New Orleans City Park. He was in, “I’m relaxing and don’t care where I go,” mode. I was directionally challenged and led him around in circles.
We found this amazing field of wildflowers and
art in the park.
If you’re like me, you take time to prepare for a trip. I check the weather and plan accordingly. Okay. Obsessively. But just like the weather forecasters in your area, they all have trouble predicting too much in advance. (The one on my iPhone is way off.) The temperatures soar when it’s supposed to be cool or storms roll in when you plan to camp on the beach.
If you’re coming to Colorado, I’ll make it easy for you. No matter how warm it gets, the dry air will feel cooler. I can never complain about the same 90 degree temperatures to my mother who may be experiencing the same heat in Wisconsin. Remember, it’s never the heat, it’s the humidity. Continue reading
We arrived in New Orleans and hit the street. After checking out the Oyster Festival, we had dinner while being serenaded at The Palace Cafe. I fell in love with the NOLA culture and its music.
It was Saturday night and I had to find out what Bourbon Street was all about. While approaching the street, it seemed like Mardi Gras continued in full party mode. Music played through the open doors of all the clubs which lined the streets.
I pulled my husband, Danny into one bar playing one of my favorite songs, “Blurred Lines.” When the music slowed, we ran across the street. Bands, DJs and singers played with no cover charge. I was in heaven. Continue reading
I travel to visit relatives a few times a year, to the mountains most weekends, and in my dreams every night. Exploring new lands, people, dining experiences and cultures is one of my favorite pastimes. I just returned from California where I enjoyed the seafood, sourdough bread, shopping, and friendly beautiful people. Now I’m in the great state of Louisiana. It’s another Wild Ride!
Danny and me and a booty bomber.
After landing in the French Quarter of New Orleans, my husband Danny and I headed down to the Oyster Festival, located on the soft shoulder of the Mississippi River. This event provided my first brush with NOLA (New Orleans Louisiana) culture. The women dressed in appropriate attire for 80+ degree weather. Many wore skirts and dresses, but what really stood out was on their feet. Continue reading
After my daughter, Courtney’s phone interview with a California company, we booked a last minute trip. You never have to twist my arm to come to the land of sandy beaches, amazing seafood, and beautiful people.
I called my friend, Jan McCarthy, who lives in downtown Los Angeles. Luckily, she was in town since she hops between LA and Boulder. The last time we visited, we went clubbing. I made all kinds of new friends and had my first Red Bull! We call Jan The Mayor since she knows everyone.
Me, Courtney, Jan and Danny in her loft.
We started with a tour and a view from the top of the Eastern Building. Continue reading
Forcing yourself out of your comfort zone can bring about personal growth and build confidence.
It can be scary. You may become hesitant and cautious.
There’s a point in the process when there’s no turning back.
The last few steps are the hardest. That’s what separates the winners from the losers. Continue reading
A church in Moreton-in-Marsh.
Roaming through the village.
I would have loved to peek inside.
Happy Hump Day!
Click on photos to enlarge
After my big adventure, I had to take Danny snowshoeing. Roxy raced ahead.
Danny followed my lead down to the Sally Barber Road.
Once we hit the mining trail, we cruised on the hard-packed snow.
We ran into a runner who suggested trekking to the mine or looping around by taking Nightmare on Bald Mountain Trail. We couldn’t find the trail, so we made our own tracks up old Baldy.
The slow and steady climb through heavy snow proved to be too much for Roxy.
We found the trail back home and Roxy sprinted ahead.
Our little outing took more than two hours, but the exercise while taking in Colorado’s beauty was worth every minute.
Come up with a caption for “backpacking Roxy” and get featured on the Wild Ride!
Leave your caption in the comment section below. The winner will be featured on my sidebar until next month’s contest! My kids, Kelly and Courtney, will choose the finalists. Good luck!
Happy first day of spring!
Daily Prompt: The Happy Wanderer
Impulse and risky choices have taken me on all kinds of adventures. This story epitomizes who I am.
After graduating from college, I struggled to find illustration jobs. Every month or two, I drew promotional advertisements for an upscale women’s clothing store where I worked selling clothes. The intermittent opportunities paid a meager wage. I made more money selling clothes than drawing them.
Then, I had a brilliant idea. Madison, Wisconsin is only a few hours away from Chicago, so I took the Van Galder Bus to the Merchandise Mart. I hoped to find a few businesses willing to pay me to draw their clothing and accessories.
With an art portfolio held tight in my hand, I knocked on doors all day, but only found one interested company. I showed the owner my drawings and paintings. She picked a purse from a pile on a table and said, “Draw this one.” She handed me a #2 pencil, a piece of typing paper and escorted me to her desk. She and her staff watched as I drew. Perspiration dripped from every pore on my body. Somehow, I managed to finish. She smiled and paid me $10.00. It covered less than half of my bus fare.
I took the elevator down to the lobby and stepped into the chilly spring air. After reorienting myself, I made my way to the bus stop. I thought about my career choice and if it would be worth it to travel to Chicago again.
While I stood shivering on the curb with my back against the Lake Michigan wind, someone tapped me on the shoulder. I turned and a thirty-something, unshaven man in a light jacket and jeans asked, “Are you waiting for the bus back to Madison?” Continue reading