Thursday, July 30, 2009

Vietnam Starbucks

As Carolyn posted, you now know that we are going to Vietnam. 3 weeks in Vietnam! Crazy to believe I'm going their since the most "international" I have gone is Vancouver, Canada. That *barely* counts.

One thing I can always count on at home or pretty much anywhere in the USA is ... Starbucks. I like to get the occasional tall mocha. Ok, maybe not so "occasional" ... more like every morning I can talk Carolyn into going with me. Sometimes she tries to talk me into trying another coffee shop but it is never the same.

I was recently wondering ... Does Vietnam have Starbucks? I figured, you can stand on a street corner in Seattle and see a Starbucks in all 4 directions ... there must be a least a few Starbucks shops in the cities of Vietnam. So ... I did a google search ...

As you can see ... the results were not good. Not good at all. 3 weeks ... No Starbucks. Maybe I will come home "cured" ...

Vietnam and Thailand Plans

Nick, Bob, Erin and I are about to embark on our Vietnam and Thailand journey on Saturday afternoon. The cities we will visit in Vietnam are: Hanoi, Lao Cai (Sapa), Halong Bay, Dong Hoi, Phong Nha Caves, Hue, Danang, Nha Trang, Dalat, and Saigon. We will be travelling by planes, trains, taxis, scooters, buses and even a junk boat! We are also going to try and summit Fansipan the biggest mountain in Vietnam that is the junction between China, Vietnam and Laos. The cities we will visit in Thailand are: Bangkok, Phuket, Ko Samui and Koh Phangan. On the way home we'll have a long layover in Soeul. It'll be a whirlwind trip of a lifetime.

Monday, July 27, 2009

My New Collage at Work and Enjoying the Sunset

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My new collage wall at work full of photos of my family

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Hiking Badger Mountain tonight just as the sun was setting.  We are doing some last minute hiking before our big trip to Vietnam since we will be hiking Fansipan (the highest peak in Vietnam) in about a week.  Even though it was warm out, the sunset was totally worth it.

Framing for the Habitat for Humanity All Women’s Build

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Measuring for the little inserts above the doors

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Sawing the inserts
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Lots of hammering of those inserts

Putting the back wall up

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Great Falls National Park

While on my trips to Washington DC, I rarely get out to do much besides grab dinner. However, this trip made it over to Great Falls National Park.

Only $5 to enter the park. This is a unique section of the Potomac River where the river is squeezed down into the narrow Mathers Gorge.

Right before the gorge the Potomac spills over interesting rock formations. The resulting falls are impressive. There are nice trails along the rocky cliffs for viewing the falls.

The cliff walls are also popular for rock climbers. I saw climbing
ropes but no climbers.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Bear Creek, Mount Howard, Wallowa Lake

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On the way to the Wallowas we stopped and took some photos in some beautiful wheat fields 

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Filling out the hiking permit before heading out on the Bear Creek Hike outside of the town of Wallowa

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The hike was 10 miles round trip and was really easy.  It was along the river which was nice

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When we got back to the car we came acrossed three domesticated goats used for carrying gear.  One of them was new to carrying bags and buzzed right by us

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The town of Joseph is well known for their bronze foundries and little shops

We stayed in the town of Joseph at a Bed and Breakfast called Belle Pepper’s, it was so cute
They had chickens for fresh eggs

They also had a couple goats

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There were a couple deer hanging out in front of the place we stayed.  They were really close to us.

Heading up the tram to Mount Howard, an elevation of over 8000 feet

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There were butterflies everywhere 

View of Lake Wallowa from the top

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While we ate lunch we watched gondola riders go by

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Heading down the gondola it was really steep!

Lake Wallowa

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The sunsets were gorgeous

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Saying bye to Belle Pepper’s and to the beautiful Wallowa Mountains

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We went on a short hike to BC Falls outside of Wallowa Lake