Category Archives: Meandering

Weekly Travel Theme – Motion

train sunset(Racing by a show-stopping Santa Barbara sunset on the Amtrak Coast Starlight)

The back-to-back, Monday-Tuesday, one-two photo challenge punch continues with this week’s Travel Theme of “Motion” from Where’s My Backpack. It is a counter-intuitive concept, to capture motion in a snapshot – I thought Ailsa picked the perfect quote to reflect this:

The aim of every artist is to arrest motion, which is life, by artificial means and hold it fixed so that a hundred years later, when a stranger looks at it, it moves again since it is life.” – William Faulkner

And, with that, here are a few glimpses of motion I have captured both here and abroad.

dolphins(Dolphins playing alongside our whale watching trip in San Diego)

monkeys(Young rhesus macaques playing with prayer flags – and visitors – at Swayambhunath – The Monkey Temple – in Kathmandu, Nepal)

surfers(Watching the last wave of the evening, and resting after a long day in the sun and sea – Playa Dominica, Costa Rica)

pelaton(The Peloton entering Place de Concorde in the final stage of the Tour de France – Paris, France)

cairo(The slow meander of The Nile on a clear night – Cairo, Egypt)

niece on the move

nephew on the move(And, of course, no “Motion” post would be complete in my world without featuring my niece and nephew (both newly) in motion – thrilled with their mobility and clearly on a mission to tackle my camera.)

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Summer of San Diego!

balboa park(Museums in Balboa Park)

It is a funny thing, living in a vacation destination. Although I pass by the Sea World tower each day during my shuttle-ride to the lab, I am most often oblivious to the tourist attractions and natural wonders by which we am surrounded. In discussing how to spend our non-BBQ time during this Fourth of July weekend, The Bat and I got to discussing all of the San Diego attractions that, as residents, we have never taken the time to see and/or experience. Our list grew quite fast and the idea of a summer blogging project bloomed along with it.

east county (Looking out over the arid farm country of East San Diego county)

June was a hectic month – what with constant birthday parties, family gatherings, Whole30 restrictions and work schedule changes. I am very happy to put those days behind me. Luckily, July has opened full of sunshine and, thus far, much more relaxing. So, in the interest of living in the moment and soaking up what the city has to offer – I am officially declaring it The Summer of San Diego. I want to play tourist in my hometown and see what makes San Diego “America’s Finest City.”

alesmith (Beer tasting at AleSmith)

There is no time like the present to really explore the nooks and crannies of San Diego. After 7 years in Boston and 4 years in Paris, I can easily make lists of things I never took the time to see and do (Glass flowers, anyone? Or wine tasting in the French countryside?).  I do not want to take this city for granted. To that end, no project of mine is complete without a list. So, without further ado – here are more things than I could possibly fit into the next 8-12 weekends. Of course posting them here holds me somewhat accountable and provides excellent blog fodder as the summer moves along.

la jolla cove(Sea Kayakers in La Jolla Cove)

Let the games begin!

Attractions:

San Diego Zoo

San Diego Zoo Safari Park

Sea World

Legoland (I want to go this summer, mainly for this)

Belmont Park

 

Historical Landmarks:

Cabrillo National Monument

Mission San Diego

Old Town San Diego – Food and Tours!

 

Parks/Beaches:

Balboa Park:

–       Museums (so many, and free on Tuesdays)

–       Botantical Garden

–       Concert at the Organ Pavillion

–       Play at the Globe Theater

–       Japanese Friendship Garden

San Diego Botanical Garden

Picnic at Kate Sessions Park

Tidepools at Sunset Cliffs

Hiking at Torrey Pines

Palomar Mountain Observatory

Anza Borrego Dessert (might have to wait for flower season next spring)

Camping/Hiking @ Idyllwild

 

Sports:

Watch San Diego Padres baseball game at Petco Park

Play Disc Golf at Morley Field

Surfing Lessons (?)

Paddleboarding

Sea Cave Kayaking in La Jolla Cove

Watch (do?) paragliding at the Torrey Pines Gliderport

Del Mar Horse Races

Sailing in the San Diego Harbor

 

Food/Drink as motivators:

Beer Tasting (at one/some/all of the booming craft breweries in the area!)

Julian Road Trip and Apple Pie

Sunset cocktails at the beachside bar at the Hotel Del Coronado

Farmers Markets

 

@UCSD:

The Stuart Collection

Dr. Seuss Collection

Fallen Star

 

Beyond San Diego:

California Missions Road Trip

Joshua Tree National Park

Big Bear Lake

Wine Tasting in Temecula

Wine Tasting in Santa Barbara/Santa Ynez

Catalina Island

Six Flags Magic Mountain

Train to The Big A for an Angels baseball game

ucsd teddy (“Bear” on the campus of University of California, San Diego)

San Diegans (and visitors), tell me what I have missed, but must see!

Friends (or other bloggers?), let me know if you want to get in on the fun and join me on any of these adventures!

The list is long (and somewhat overwhelming), but it is so exciting to realize how much fun there is to be had in my own backyard!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge – Curves

This past weekend I joined friends (and Walker, of knit hat fame) to participate in the San Diego Farm Bureau’s Farm Tour Day 2013. We were guided through the grounds and operations of three local agricultural giants, specializing in flowers and succulents, avocados and seasonal, organic produce. I had checked the Weekly Photo Challenge before leaving the house early that morning, and spent the day looking out for images that evoked this week’s theme of “Curves”. I thought this photo of almost-ripe avocados did the trick. The fruit hung heavy on the thin branches, while the leaves provided a dappled shadow to protect them from the intense heat of the direct, summer sunlight. The dark, rough, pebbled curve of their outer shell belied the creamy, rich sweetness of the fragile flesh within. They were dipping low enough that I was tempted to grab and pull – but I resisted the urge and was rewarded with a ripe avocado souvenir at the end of the tour. It was a perfect way to spend a sunny Saturday.

low hanging fruit

Weekly Travel Theme – Dance

Besides dancing it out in my own living room after an exceptionally good day, there is not much dance in my everyday life. So, when Ailsa challenged her readers with this week’s travel theme of “Dance”, I was genuinely stuck for a moment. My first reaction was to lament that I’d not reviewed the theme over the weekend, so I could have gone out and found dancers (taking new photos based on these weekly themes, rather than digging through the archives is the next step in this process of bettering my photography). My second impulse was to wish my nieces and nephews were just a bit older, because there is nothing more fun than crazy toddler dancing. Then I started digging – turns out the archives are not as dry as once thought… Let’s Dance:

father daughter discoMy time in Nepal was full of dancing – from this father-daughter dance at the reception of the wedding I was attending (isn’t the bride’s sari amazing?!), to these children dancing in the streets to the sounds of another wedding party walking to the bride’s home in the traditional ceremony of Janti.happy childrenother nepali wedding

Weddings are great venues to catch dancing, in general. These are photos of the first dance from two friends’ weddings I attended recently – the first in Dade City, Florida; the other in Washington, D.C (look at her shoes! I’m still in awe).first dance macaronfirst dance DC

There is nothing more French than doing the Can-Can under the Eiffel Tower on Bastille Day – right? can can

And no one, given the chance, would turn down the opportunity to dance with Dropkick Murphys on stage at L’Olympia in Paris…dropkick murphys

Lastly, there’s this guy. Dancing solo while a clarinet busker tries to make the most of his day in the Montmartre neighborhood of Paris. He doesn’t appear to care about anyone else (especially the stranger with a camera) – he just needs to dance. solo dancer montmartre

In Images – Cabin Fever

Touring La Jolla recently. The sunshine and ocean air were wonderfully fortifying after a week spent inside, coping with whatever virus hit me hard recently.

la jolla contemporary art

(Outdoor installation at the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego)

seals1

(Onlookers at the Children’s Pool Beach, ogling the seals who have taken over)

pelicans1

(Pelicans roosting on an outcropping, seals swimming into shore)

la jolla cove

(The Pacific Ocean has always been my place for reflection and rejuvenation)

la jolla shore

(View of La Jolla Shores from La Jolla Cove – more seals in the foreground and the sea-kayak tour in the distance that has been added to the top of my ‘to-do on a sunny day’ list)

hang glider1

(Looking back at La Jolla from the Torrey Pines Gliderport)

blacks beach

(North view along Black’s Beach)

waves

(A few braving the ocean – the sunshine was warming for both body and spirit; the water – I’d imagine – not so much)

In Images – Skyline and Sparkles

Sometimes words are unnecessary – the view is enough.

skyline

(Downtown San Diego as seen across the bay from Coronado)

hotel del

(The historic Hotel Del Coronado, still holding onto the holiday spirit)