A Travellerspoint blog

August 2012

Hiking in Oahu

Hike recommended by my friend Erin!

Wind-swept grasses

Inside a pill box

How did these get up here?

Wind-swept everything

Ladder to the center of the earth (or just a pill box)


Before we saw the concrete structures, I thought *these* were the pill boxes

Everyone wants to live by the water...

Why can't we have a switchback or two??

Does anyone else get these bubbles under their skin?

One of many false leads as we searched for the famed Lanikai Beach (purportedly Obama's favorite)

Not this one either!

But it's gorgeous anyway

Hell yeah

Still searching

Huzzah! We found it!

Not the ideal chicken-to-rice ratio at this lunchbox joint :\

Posted by chschen 05:00 Archived in USA Comments (0)


There's U.S. territory somewhere down there...

In Hawaii, even the view from a mall parking lot is pretty

Land of Cats

Our first campsite in Oahu

Posted by chschen 05:45 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Cagayan de Oro

We're in Cagayan de Oro now, which means our time in the Philippines is drawing to a close. It doesn't seem possible we've been here nearly a month.


Posted by chschen 05:00 Archived in Philippines Comments (0)

Turning 30 (in Camiguin)

Learning my Stations of the Cross on the Walkway to the Old Volcano

A forest of palms to one side...

...and the Sunken Cemetery to the other

Next we visited another waterfall, which lay beyond the road that was still being constructed, requiring us to hike over rubble (I'm glad we left the motorbike behind a ways)

Just passing through, sunning us some corn and drying us some laundry (just kidding--who do these belong to?!)

Happily on the other side of the wobbly bridge

My burn developed a protective bubble of pus

Researching on the internet about burn care

* * * * *

It's hot, but I've grown so used to it I sometimes forget, until I start wondering why I have no energy and want to sleep and why my skin's so unbearably sticky.

We gave the motorbike back and have nothing planned for the rest of the day. I think I might take a dip in the frothy ocean to cool off, but I've seen no one in there and have to wonder why. Is it just that "black sand" (brown, really) is less enticing? Or is there something nefarious about the waters here?

All of this is written just to distract me from the thought that I'm officially 30. Chris says I'm taking it exceptionally hard. It's just another reminder of my mortality, I guess.

I feel impatient, restless, as though waiting for something to happen. It's so still and quiet here. German Martin in Malapascua saw me writing in my journal once and said, "Ah, travel diary? Yes, I used to keep one of those. And then I realized I was spending two hours a day writing when I could have been living my life!" Suddenly apologetic, he added, "Of course, when I read through the pages later it was nice to see what I had done..." We nodded, yes yes, it's nice.

The dogs here are so naked it's almost embarrassing. The females, especially, with their swollen teats that make you think, "There're too many!" They walk languidly, as I do. Only the puppies have energy to run.

Posted by chschen 05:00 Archived in Philippines Comments (0)


Camiguin now. Was it just yesterday we left Anda? Seems a lifetime ago.

Tomorrow I turn 30. It's dreadful to think I will have been alive for three decades. My father: six. He must say to himself sometimes, I'm 60 now, and I still have to worry about my 30-year-old daughter. But I can't let myself think about that.

We rented a motorbike today. It was the first time Chris had ever driven one and only the fourth or fifth time I'd ever ridden one, always in a foreign country. I burned my leg badly on the tailpipe. It's a sick-looking grayish purple but seems much better than it did at first. Afterwards I was afraid of the damned vehicle, but of course I had to get on again.


We were cheerful tonight, eating margherita pizza and spaghetti frutti di mare at Luna's Ristorante. The food was surprisingly good and not over-salted as it is at many other places in the Philippines. Of course we had to pay more. I keep telling Chris we ought to go to Italy if he's going to be craving pizza all year.


It's awful to have finished my books too early, to have nothing to read, nothing with which to beat away the night. Instead I listen to the incomprehensible voices of the French backpackers next door. Two young men: friends, most likely--they don't seem like lovers. They said they will keep traveling until they run out of money. I don't bother to ask, And then what? It's not a question travelers enjoy answering. One of them rode the Trans-Siberian railroad recently. He told us to take second class because third class was too lonely. I believe him. Riding on trains for thousands of miles. It seems quiet, but it's probably actually pretty noisy. But the kind of noise that keeps you out.

* * * * *

Porch view of the place we stayed the first night (it was too crappy, so we moved)

Fishing boats

Tallllllll palm trees

I'm pointing at White Island, where we had planned to dive before my little accident

Wait a second...

My intrepid driver

Well, at least we made it to the waterfall!

Letting my burn soak (apparently the wrong decision, according to the doctors in our family, for the bacteria in the water)

I'm looking awfully happy for someone who just got a second degree burn

Finally got far enough away to get the whole waterfall

Hot springs!

What a weird creature I found there

Posted by chschen 05:00 Archived in Philippines Comments (0)