Roaming About

A Life Less Ordinary

Month: June 2016 (page 1 of 2)

WW – Animal Partners in the Galapagos Islands

Nazca boobies

Nazca boobies

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Reblogging: Great Britain, RIP by Al Lane

The result of the Brexit vote/referendum in the UK has shocked the world and its impact is global and immediate.  The Brits regrettably (and regrettingly?) have decided to leave the EU.  We all suffer because of it. I am disheartened by the way politicians misrepresent the truth and by how people don’t think critically and for themselves anymore. I fear for this right-wing trend to continue everywhere and hope the US, among other countries, will learn from the UK’s “mistake”.

My blogger friend Al is a writer, poet and citizen from the UK, who did an interview with me for his Dirty Dozen series recently.  He put his sentiments in words that make total sense. I have decided to reblog his post from yesterday on Roaming About, because of the insights it presents, and because I stand by his side. My intended bog post for today about visiting the biggest mountain in Massachusetts on Sunday will be postponed until later this week. You can see Al’s original post and comments here.

This great video by British comedian and HBO television host John Oliver also hits the nail on the head…

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Our First Ever Attempt at Gardening

Check out what others have to say about their Six Word Saturday.

How does your weekend look like? Any gardening in the forecast?

St. Petersburg Reflection

Reflection from the grounds of the Alexander Nevsky Monastery in St. Petersburg, Russia

Reflection from the grounds of the Alexander Nevsky Monastery in St. Petersburg, Russia

I couldn’t resist  posting this photo on my blog after checking out Paula’s “Mirroring” challenge this week. 🙂

Full Moon of the Past

Full moon on our sailboat in Deltaville, VA (October 2007)

Full(-ish) moon on our sailboat Irie in Deltaville, VA (October 2007)

… to stay with the theme of our most recent summer solstice full moon. Not much luck photographing that one, so I searched my archives.

I like Wordless Wednesdays.

Because I have been known to talk and write too much (here I go again).

Because a photo sometimes says more than a thousand words (depends on those words and what the shot does NOT reveal).

Because I finally have an excuse to post pretty cool, but disregarded photos of our travels.

Did you see or photograph the full moon (also called a strawberry moon in June) on June 20th? Did you go outside and let romance overtake you? Did you see fireflies and stars, and felt many mosquitoes upon your skin, like I did?

A Weekend of Camping and Hiking in Vermont; and a Visit Beyond

I can’t quite remember the last time Mark and I went camping for pleasure, as in when we really wanted to go camping. My recollections go back ten years ago or so, when our dogs, the Grand Canyon and loads of insect bites were part of the experience. I mention the “for pleasure” part, because the previous time we seriously camped was for two months in 2007, when a tent and a car were all we owned, so camping was our lifestyle. It wasn’t necessarily our preferred way to live, but the cheapest option in between other adventures. We had just moved out of our truck camper and were in the process of searching and eventually buying our sailboat.

Trying to set up the tent at home - check. All parts are present.

Trying to set up the tent at home – check. All parts are present.

The tent we had for ages was finally traded for some local handicrafts in the San Blas Islands, Panama, a few years ago and a new tent recently became ours through a promotion online. It was time to test it out in earnest. Continue reading

The Essence of Summer – Embracing Colors and Scents in the Yard

I am happy with my warm and colorful Wordless Wednesday this week. Summer is finally approaching…

To check out more summer bliss and colors, swing by Jude’s blog for her Garden Challenge, or see what summer prompts at The Daily Post. 🙂

Happy Wednesday and don’t forget to smell the flowers!

Visit to Northampton, MA

One of the big advantages of a house and pet sitting lifestyle is that you have the chance to live in different places with every assignment. While we primarily prefer longer term sits for our own comfort, sense of settling in and being able to concentrate on work projects without having to move constantly, we also enjoy being immersed in a new area and having plenty of opportunity and time to explore its surroundings during the weekends.

Recently, our temporary dog Jenny needed new food from a pet food store quite a drive from here.  Dave’s Soda and Pet City (interesting name for a pet food store) has a location in the city of Northampton, where other chores could be accomplished, and where neither of us had been before. We decided to combine the necessary with the pleasant and explored the college town around noon on a Saturday.

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Quite Insane: Our Flannel Sheets Remain!

In the cold and rain
We wait in vain
For summer to maintain
And revoke winter pain

Submitted to Six Word Saturday

Monthly Expenses – May 2016

Every month, I post a report of our expenses to show that it is possible to live a comfortable, exciting and relatively adventurous life without being rich. Or even without owning/earning a lot of money. That being said, Mark and I seem to manage one big expense a month for some reason, whether it is car, plane, travel or computer-related. Luckily, we live totally rent-free and in comfort, wherever we end up. 🙂

This report includes ALL of our expenses, for the two of us. Under groceries we incorporate all the food, produce and non-alcoholic drinks (100% orange juice, oat milk for Mark and organic 2% milk for me) predominantly bought in supermarkets. Dining out means eating at a restaurant and/or take-out food. The health category covers medicines and Mark's vitamins and supplements. Utilities are always phone and Skype-related, now that our internet is free. 

We have added a new expense category in May: charity. From now on, we will donate $10 a month to the animal sanctuary Best Friends. And, maybe, one day we will even adopt one of their rescue dogs. We both read a book about this amazing no-kill sanctuary in Utah years ago and the stories of the animals and caretakers still have a place in our hearts.

Here is an overview of our expenses in May. The amount I spent in Belgium is relatively low, thanks to the hospitality and generosity of my parents. It includes 150 dollars worth of chocolate goods I brought back to the US. Yum!

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