Inspired to Blog

That’s me, hiking Kauai’s infamous Kalalau Trail

I am on a hiking trail—the famous eleven-mile Kalalau Trail, carved into the steep cliffs of Na Pali on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. After 35-plus years living in Hawaii, this is the first time I’ve set foot on the Kalalau Trail. I’ve thought about it, talked about doing it and even planned it on a previous trip to Kauai, but this is the first time I’ve ever done it, even though I can only claim the first mile and back. Next time I’ll go further.

And that’s my inspiration to blog—traveling and trying things I’ve never done before, and not letting my age (let’s just call it “advanced”) or physical limitations hold me back. This past summer on a cruise up the coast of Norway, I joined a bird-watching excursion to the Stappen Islands at Norway’s North Cape. My goal was to photograph puffins, Arctic turns and other seabirds in flight, and it proved a tougher task than I imagined. Our little boat rolled and pitched in the sea, and although I wedged myself against the railing, at times I worried about falling overboard (I’m tall and the railing was only waist high). I also admit to a little seasickness. But yes, I did get a few good shots.

A year earlier, I took a tour through Turkey. On the itinerary, our brochure listed a visit to an underground city in Cappadocia. When we arrived at the entrance, I was taken aback to learn that the underground passageways were extremely low, narrow and claustrophobic. Several members of our group declined to continue, but I was determined not to miss anything, so down we went—seven levels, each deeper than the first. The tunnels were so small, we had to crouch or walk on our knees, and our arms brushed the rough walls. Sometimes the line of people in front of me would stop for several seconds. I’d wonder what was happening and imagine getting stuck in there, running out of air, but then we’d move again. Thank goodness I’d worked on squats before leaving home.

One of the larger rooms in the underground city, Cappadocia, Turkey.

Looking back, I can think of other times I was fearful but determined to press on, like when I was faced for the first time with driving a left-handed-stick campervan on New Zealand’s North Island roads where truckers speed madly around slowpoke tourist campervan drivers, jumping off a rocky ledge in Hana Maui to join my friends in the waterfall-fed pool below (and being sure I was going to die by doing so), commanding a sled-dog team on an Alaskan glacier (braking is the hardest part), swirling above the clouds in an open-cockpit biplane over the San Juan Islands and leaning out to take photos while my stomach did some swirling of its own, and even swimming with sharks (no cage) in Midway Atoll’s lagoon.

All these travels inspire me to blog. I can’t wait to share each moment, and conversely, read about others’ adventures. I’ll probably want to try some of those adventures. And if I do, I’ll blog about them.

This post has been a special photo challenge by the Daily Post. For others’ blogging inspiration, check out the link.

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Categories: Hawaii, Photography, Travel, Travel: Turkey | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 49 Comments

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49 thoughts on “Inspired to Blog

  1. Jennifer, looking at your pictures and reading of the places you have been I can quite understand why you are inspired to blog. Some places are so gorgeous writing about them and sharing that joy in a blog is a great pleasure.

    • It absolutely is, Kate. As is reading all your historical-places posts (and Clive Bond stories :) You have a delightful way with words.

  2. Great pics Jennifer – how’s the other project coming along?

    • Thanks, D. And how lovely—a prompt. I was hoping you’d ask b/c, I do have a query letter ready. Just waiting for the right time to present it, I think. It’s quite a departure from my usual posts. How about you? Any progress?

  3. travel adventures definitely inspire good blogging. :)

    • That is so true, and there are so many good travel-adventure blogs. I only wish I had more hours in the day to read more of them. What kind of adventures can I have (no bungee jumping or parachuting, please) in Croatia? Any suggestions?

      • oh, anything to do with being on the water. Do you like sailing? a sailing holiday along the Dalmatian coastline. Croatia has about 1000 islands to discover. There is white water rafting, there is kayaking, there is canoeing, there is plenty to do!
        I will do a post about it, thanks Writecrites for inspiring!

    • Discovering islands sounds wonderful. Count me in. Do they have waterfalls, hiking trails and undiscovered “Raiders of the Lost Ark” type temples? :) How about caves? Besides all the above water stuff, I like to go underwater, too. Maybe a little snorkeling to see colorful corals and fishes and giant clams. Any friendly sharks like they have in Belize? How about ziplines? I tend towards the “discovery” aspect. Can’t wait to see your post about it.

    • Wow, thank you for all the advice (you definitely had me at architecture, as it fascinates me), and even a travel company to call upon. I’m bookmarking them. That little olm is quite an interesting creature—ten years without needing food. Amazing. Yes, I can definitely see me having some adventures in Croatia :)

  4. Jim

    My intrepid cousin! Quite a list of derring-doo adventures. Nice processing on the Kalalau Trail
    photo, by the way.

    • Hi cuz, You know writing this has made me realize I have lots of other “derring-doo” adventures I can write about, and, oddly, I don’t really think of myself as “daring” at all. In fact, I see myself as conservative. Sometimes I just fall into this stuff, or it’s offered and I can’t say no. I did say no to parachuting once, though, when I was offered a free one, but I enjoyed the glider ride (so quiet up there with no motor).
      And I must tell you that, although I often process my photos, there was absolutely no processing on the Kalalau Trail photo. It’s au natural :) (credit to Jerry)

  5. I can’t wait to see where we – I mean you, are going next!

  6. wow that is awesome. All these adventures you are able to do is amazing. i would never be able to crawl in those caves though. Just reading about it made me sweat and feel panicked. I hate closed in spaces.

    • Looking over some of that stuff, I think, “was that me?” :)
      I must admit to getting quite nervous in those very tight tunnels, especially when sandwiched between people who are also crouching. I also admit, at one point when everyone stopped, to giving a gentle push to the person in front of me and saying, “MOVE.” But where could he go? There were people in front of him, too. Luckily the tunnels weren’t too long and emerged into larger rooms so I could take a breather between each one. Afterwards, I felt quite pleased with myself that I had done it, so there’s that reward. The reason the whole place is maze-like and the tunnels are so small is that the design was used to fend off enemies. As a stranger to the tunnel system, you’re kind of a sitting duck in there.

  7. Way to enjoy life!!! Beautiful hiking spot. Visiting from TALU

    • Thanks, Andrea. Unless you believe in reincarnation, we only have one life, so best to enjoy it, right, and getting out in nature does it for me.
      Yay TALU!

  8. Wow to the left handed stick. I am impressed!!! I lived in Japan for three years and I am sure the last time I drove in the rain I STILL turned on the turning signals.

    • Haha! I hit the wipers when I wanted the turn signals. Many, many times. The hardest part for me, though, was the size of the campervan. You can’t turn around and look when backing up, say, out of a parking space, which is what I’m used to doing. There’s a whole big “house” back there. Getting used to using only the side mirrors was my Achilles Heel (I avoided changing lanes like the plague). Wow, that thing was big. And parallel parking….don’t get me started. Also the van was 12 years old and so slow up hills, I had to shift down to second gear. I’m sure the zippy New Zealand drivers behind me loved that. lol

      • LOL! Now I am triple impressed. I don’t think I changed lanes much either and I was driving a teeny little something like a Honda hatchback.

    • It was survival of the fittest—me against the campervan. That thing had so many quirks, I realize now that I could do a whole post, just on the van, that I hope would elicit ROFL I’m a stand-up comedian at heart :)

  9. You have had such awesome experiences–definitely inspiration for blogging! I hope some day to be able to travel more, but today have just reading about your journeys :)
    Visiting via TALU

    • And I am really glad to have you along with me (in words and photos) on my journeys. Perhaps they will point you in the best direction when you are able to travel. More than likely you will have some very inspiring adventures of your own to blog about :)

  10. I loved reading about your adventures! I’m not so brave, I’m afraid, but you inspire me. I’m glad I visited here (from TALU)!

    • I’m really not so brave, Gerry. I read about other people bungee jumping and parachuting (my niece did that while pregnant. Yikes), neither of which I would ever do. I won’t even go on a roller coaster (ferris wheels are ok). But if something offers a sense of discovery, a chance for me to learn something and/or take photos, and it doesn’t seem too dangerous or beyond my abilities, I will probably try it if the opportunity arises. I guess I’m not so much after the “thrill” aspect as the “let’s see what’s around the next corner” aspect. I call it sensible adventuring. I’m absolutely delighted that you enjoyed reading about my adventures, though. And that I inspire you, well, I am deeply touched.

  11. How inspiring are you?! You’re awesome!

    • Oh, you guys are just so nice, and I feel just so way short of awesome. Way, way, way short. And I’ve always been shy of compliments. When I see one coming, my first instinct is to duck. And then immediately change the subject. But as long as you’re enjoying my stories and photos, I’m happy and so appreciative of your support.

  12. So how can I stow away in your luggage when you do explore the Dalmatian Coast? That’s my only question. Good to see someone else with my brand of travel lust that gives me some vicarious satisfaction. TALU-ho!

    • Ha, Lara, maybe I should be stowing away in your luggage after our Content Marketing biz takes off, because you are the guru on all things social network. Yes, we do indeed have the same brand of travel lust. Yours was ingrained pretty early in life I think. TALU-ho indeed!

      • Oh, no I don’t claim the guru title. I’m always weary when I comes to claim me. I would love to see my passport get some newer stamps. They still do that?

    • Yep, they still do that. So where would you like to go?

      • Where wouldn’t I like to go? I always dreamed of getting a RTW ticket and heading off for a year. One day, I’ll do it.

    • That’s the spirit :)

  13. Wow! I’m tired just reading about all of your adventures. Sadly, I have neither the time nor the $ to do much by way of travel, so I’ll have to live vicariously through you. Sounds like I’ll have a great time too! :) [#TALU]

    • I have the urge to lurk on a street corner, a bunch of travel brochures hidden in my raincoat. When someone comes by, I’ll open up the raincoat and say, “I can show you a great time,” and wink. But since that’s not going to happen, I’m pleased to inform you that you have collected a few of my travel brochures, so be prepared to get very, very tired having a good time :) So glad to have you with me.

  14. Really enjoyed reading this post and great shots… :-)

  15. My brother lived in Hawaii for three years. Between the two of you, I have planned my trip. Now I just need these kids to grow up and move out so I can go. Someday…

    • Couldn’t you bring the kids with you? There’s a bucket-full of family-friendly things to do here, and (shhhh, don’t tell anybody) but there are lots of great deals for families, too. I’m beginning to think tourists can come over and stay here for less than those of us who live here. And you would be amazed at all the wonderful, fun and free stuff to do. (Do I sound like a travel brochure?)

  16. Ah we are kindred spirits Jennifer! I look forward to following your adventures :-)

  17. Pingback: Special Photo Challenge: Inspiration | Mirth and Motivation

  18. You have such a great smile. :-)

    • Thank you :)
      I was just reading your post on reflection, and it occurred to me that a genuine smile is a reflection of the joy we feel for life, and that’s why I love seeing smiles on the faces of those I meet. It tells me they’re enjoying life as much as I am.

  19. Pingback: Special Photo Challenge: Inspiration » The Blog Farm

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