5 Shots: Kauai Day Two

Traveling is relative. If you live in the southwest or western part of the United States, it’s logical to vacation on this side of the hemisphere. Heading to Mexico or the Hawaiin Islands is direct and affordable, then say, flying east and traveling to Europe. Like most people, I enjoy taking photographs of wherever I go. I’m sticking to five shots and picking from the hundreds of pictures the best ones from each day. Which one do you like best? 

1. Rooster

I learned in the 1850s a hurricane came to Kauai and destroyed a chicken farm. The result of the chicken scattering is the island has feral chickens and roosters running around like pigeons. There are no predators on the island. Or snakes. I thought the roosters were fun to watch and gave the island a quirky quality to it.

2. Sunrise
3. Valley

We drove up to the north end of the island. Kaui is diverse. On this side of the island, 400 inches of rainfall give Kauai that botanical, paradise reputation. On the Westside, only 15 inches fall a year. I was surprised to see cactus growing and dry hills. The island appeals to naturalists and adventurists. Biking, hiking, surfing, golfing, kayaking, and fishing are enjoyed with enthusiasm. I liked how rural the island felt.

4. Horses
5. Sun is setting

5 Shots: Storm Brewing in Sycamore Canyon

Family has come to visit which means a trip up to the plateau for vista views, music, and Jim’s famous foil dinners. No one should visit Arizona without an evening out in the wilderness for an authentic experience of the Southwest. It’s our favorite way to entertain guests. Which shot do you like best?

1. Sycamore Wilderness
2. Wilderness Road
3. Foil dinner around the campfire
4. Rain is coming
5. A hole in the sunset
6. Downpour in Sedona

IMO: 2018

2018 was like riding a temperamental thoroughbred without a saddle. An exceptional year set at a furious pace containing great and horrible events. I am exhausted. Since we have already concluded the first week of 2019, will the fast pace set up the new year as a repeat? I regret not posting enough or following your blogs to the extent you have written them. In exchange for sporadic blogging, I spent my time completing my second novel, Inside the Gold Plated Pistol. That feels very good indeed! Wish me luck as I search for an agent who might see something worthy in the narrative. A sweet cherry was given to me when Arizona’s Emerging Writers: An Anthology compiled and edited by Z Publishing House featured an excerpt from my novel (www.zpublishing.com). Inside the Gold Plated Pistol is the second installment in a six-part series chronicling new heroes of the United States from the twentieth century. It took me five years to research and write it. Good grief, I’ll be 76 by the time I finish the project. Tick-tock. Tick-tock. Hurry, Cindy!

winter fire ring
Winter Fire Ring

Since “rushed time” is my theme, here are a few pictures that represent the highs and lows of 2018. Let’s go backward.

For two weeks we have been entertaining family. Our guests wanted snow. And they got it. Arizona had a couple big snow storms recently. Kids and grandkids had fun sledding and appreciating that strange white stuff in the White Mountains on the eastern side of the state. Returning to North Central AZ was problematic. On New Year’s Eve, it took eleven hours to drive through a sudden storm with blinding snow and freezing temperatures. Back home, the snow had melted and we are back to 50-degree temperatures.

The late summer and fall contained the busiest workload I’ve thrown on myself in years. I did it. But I don’t remember how.

In June I took a group to Rome and Sorrento and had a blast.

Sorrento at Dusk

After twenty-six years of being divorced, the end of April was special as I married Jim on our version of the “Love Train”.

april wedding
April Wedding

It was a dream come true to see our two sides of the family mingle in one location. It certainly was the highlight of the year.

the gross time
The Gross Time

The start of 2018 was a nightmare. In short, I was in and out of the hospital from Jan – April multiple times. Thirteen times to the E.R., tests, tests, and more tests, two surgeries, a blood clot, two long distance ambulance rides, and $158k later, I was able to return to work and finish out the school year and marry at the end of the month. My liver and gallbladder were the culprits. The disgusting details surrounding their rebellion in my body I am still trying to repress.

Hiking in Sedona in December and January is the best time to explore the canyons as it is cool and refreshing. Here’s a shot from Fay Canyon about twenty minutes from my home. This right before my body shut down.

Winter Hike in Sedona

 

I’m not much a fan of newsletters sharing all the things one has done throughout the year, but I’ve noticed bloggers like listing and recapping their year. So why not? Let me include by sharing my favorite choices of entertainment in 2018.

Isle of Dogs

Colette

The Green Book

MI: Fallout

The Last Kingdom, Season 3

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Season 1

A Quiet Place

Roma

A Star is Born

The Happy Prince

Most Entertaining Book: The Sisters Brothers

There you go. What was your favorite movie or book of the year?

See, there’s snow in Arizona.

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