Traveling is one of my favorite things. I don't get to travel as often as I'd like, but when I do there's much to learn about other people and places around the globe. I've been thinking about my travel reaches with the conclusion of television's best realtity tv show, The Amazing Race.
NORTH: the furthest north I've been is Fairbanks, Alaska. 1992. My family took a spring break trip to Alaska to visit one of our brother's who lived in Anchorage. Given my love for snow over heat, this was the perfect spring break. It was a necessary trip since it happened only three months after one of our siblings died in 1991. It was a great time. I'd never seen so many glaciers in one place before. We got stuck in a blizzard, I made my first credit card purchase (a couple night's stay at a Super 8 motel), and we saw tons of wildlife. Things which I remember the most on this trip: the potholes in Seward, the vast nothingness of Alaska, dirty cars, unmatched scenic beauty, and heaps of snow.
SOUTH: I had to research this one a bit because I thought it might be West Palm Beach, Florida instead of Maui, Hawaii. After a little internet digging, it's clear Maui is the winner. 2001. It took me almost 28 years to land on Hawaii, but I made up for lost time. I visited the island for the first time in 2001 with my wife and 25 of our closest friends. Yep, we got "mauied" as some like to say. It was one of the best decisions we've ever made.
EAST: spaceba! In 2000, I went on a whirlwind work trip to five countries. It was on the first leg of this trip where I set my eastern expansion. We landed in Helsinki, Finland and spent one night in town, then drove east to the Finland-Russia border. We overnighted in Imatra, Finland and took Finnish cabs to a paper mill in Svetogorsk, Russia.
Well, "they" took cabs. I forgot my hardhat inside my hotel room, ran back inside to retrieve it, and by the time I got back outside… the cab was gone. My colleagues cab drove off unaware I wasn't in the cab. About 45 minutes later a nice cab driver arrived and took me to the primitive Russian border crossing. I had some complications crossing the border since I couldn't speak Russian or Finnish with the border agent. Thankfully my helpful non-English speaking cabbie rushed up and saved my ass by explaining I was with him and that he'd be escorting me to the Russian paper mill. Let me tell you, it was a very interesting border crossing. Later that night back in Finland, we got hammered while Baywatch was playing on the bar TV.
WEST: once again Maui takes the nod. Our most recent trip to Maui happened in 2006. We traveled with our friends and rented a condo for a week. We try to return to Maui every other year during the month of April to tie it in with our anniversary. It's truly one of our most favorite places. We look forward to taking Baby Singe so she can play in the surf at the beach on our fourth visit.