Notes From Down Under: Hobbiton

March 5th, 2017

That time I slept in a Hobbit hole

Taylor poses for Marci outside the Hobbit Motel after a very comfortable night's stay and well before second breakfast and elevenses.

Taylor poses for Marci outside the Hobbit Motel after a very comfortable night’s stay and well before second breakfast and elevenses.

I’m taking a shower in a Hobbit hole. That’s the lead I came up with as the warm, delicious water washed a day of caves off me. Contenders were The hobbit hole has heated blankets or No wifi in Baggin’s place. The one ring to rule them all is embedded in our bed and I look forward to falling asleep in Middle Earth, or a reasonable facsimile thereof. Read More…

Notes From Down Under: Kerosene Creek

March 5th, 2017

It looks like any other cool-running brook, but …

Taylor sits atop a small waterfall on Kerosene Creek outside of Rotorua, New Zealand.

Taylor sits atop a small waterfall on Kerosene Creek outside of Rotorua, New Zealand.

A babbling brook on a hot summer’s day turns out to be a 100 degree geothermal creek. Mud bubbles up into pools with the smell of either bean and bacon soup or, more succinctly, farts — as the ladies say. These cracks in our perception of the way the earth should be are magical and meaningful. Welcome to Rotorua. Read More…

Notes From Down Under: Wild Horses & Strawberry

March 5th, 2017

A horse of a different color

Helmet cam: I perched my little point-n-shoot atop my riding helmet and rotated it backward to snap Marci while Strawberry "furiously charged" ahead.

Helmet cam: I perched my little point-n-shoot atop my riding helmet and rotated it backward to snap Marci while Strawberry “furiously charged” ahead.

Black sand beaches. Just the name sounds exotic. I’ve always wanted to see one and visiting the so-hot-it’s-cool Pacific Ring of Fire, I knew I’d have a chance. Read More…

Notes From Down Under: Penguin Parade

March 5th, 2017

A puking penguin parade

Somewhere out there, a thousand penguins are getting ready to barf.

Somewhere out there, a thousand penguins are getting ready to barf.

Close your eyes and imagine sitting by the sea. You’re on a multi-level deck, accessed by a long and winding walkway. Now look out over sea, the clouds have gathered around the already set sun. Ask yourself what would make this scene better, perfect actually.

Why penguins, of course, hundreds of ’em. Close to a thousand. Read More…