Sunday, December 28, 2008

St. Thomas!!!

I've been offered a lot of positions here, but I turned them all down. I've always wanted to come here, but none of the jobs ever felt right. So finally, thanks to Sky and Steph (remember them from Juneau?) I'm here.

And it feels so good. The second I climbed out of the airplane and the humidity enveloped me I remembered how wonderful it feels to be warm. And sitting here on this balcony looking out over Yacht Haven makes me seriously wonder why I ever left the Caribbean. I do miss New York when I'm gone, but man, I love the Caribbean.

St. Thomas is a crazy little island that is so third-world that I can't believe it's technically a U.S. territory. They have a lot of work to do: no clean water and massive crime being the two most glaring issues.

But overall, I'm loving it. I'm glad I'm just visiting because I don't think I'd like to live here. I'll still take Aruba any day. But St. Thomas is definitely a fun place to be for a while. You can see some of my adventures here: WATCH THIS VIDEO.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

I probably won't have internet tomorrow because I'm not home and I can't tell you where I am yet because I haven't held the contest yet for my youtube subscribers. So I'm wishing you a Merry Christmas today, even though it's only Christmas Eve.

And I wanted to show you this. For all of you that live in or around NYC, you'll really appreciate this:

Hope your holidays are as fun as mine. :)

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Although it's just another normal day up here in CANADA!! Yeah, I'm in Edmonton. Well, West Edmonton actually. I opened a new store here in the largest mall in North America. It's actually pretty cool. The store is located right next to the largest indoor waterpark in North America (Dubai beat them on both records - I can't wait to go there).

I never left the mall (I'm leaving to go back home in about 30 minutes). Ok, I left once. To IKEA. Don't you just love IKEA? Mmmm. But as far as adventures go, not here. I finally went exploring yesterday. I went to the amusement park and rode the roller coasters and elevator ride from hell thingy (you know the one that shoots you straight up 150 feet and then you drop down and then back up most of the way and down again).

I didn't really take any pictures because Edmonton is pretty flat. Just plains. Calgary looked pretty cool (we flew through there) and I hope I can go back there some time (update! I did). I took a bunch of video in the mall, and maybe some time I'll put it together and put it up on YouTube, but for now you just have this blog saying, "I was there."


Monday, October 27, 2008

New England Fall Foliage Road Trip

Whew. That's a long title.

Isa had a performance (she plays the violin) up at her old school in Massachusetts. So I rented a car and we road tripped up there. Her school's campus is beautiful:

And the road there and back was pretty too. We had a good time.

I made the video. It's a little different than my normal style. But I still think it's ok. I'll let you judge for yourself:
Click here to watch the video.
Also, if you'd like to see Isa's full performance, click here.
She's amazing. :)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

New Job, New Trips

So I just got a new job with the same company that I've been working with for the last few years (Del Sol). I'm opening new stores for them. Whenever a new store opens, they'll send me out and I make sure the store and computer systems are set up properly, I train the staff, managers, and owners, and then I work with them for a few days until they're all comfortable.

I just got back from Sedona, AZ and I'm going to Edmonton, Canada next month.

Sedona was cool. I've been there before (that's where my coyote story comes from) so I was excited to go back. Unfortunately, I was working the entire time and I was unable to take time to go on a hike. Here are a few pictures I took while I was there though:

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Home, Sweet Home

I'm back in New York City. I love to travel, and I love to meet new people, see new places, and have new experiences. I always love everywhere I go, but I always come back to New York. It just feels like home here.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Mt. Jumbo

Can you tell that the season is winding down? What is this, my fifth post this month? It's exciting when I have time to explore and go on more adventures. Sky, Steph, and I took off early today to hike Mt. Jumbo. This is the tallest mountain on Douglas Island (across from Juneau) and actually a fairly difficult hike. We had to do it fast to beat the sunset, but we made it (of course). Here's a picture of Juneau from the top, and I'll put up the video as soon as I make it.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Swimming with Icebergs

Some day I'll look back on this and laugh. No wait. I'm already laughing about this.

Skyler and I decided that we would not leave Alaska until we had swum out and touched an iceberg. I'm not completely sure what we were thinking, but there's no stopping us once we had decided.

Isa made me do a lot of research last night on hypothermia and how long it takes for body parts to start shutting down in cold water. It's really interesting, and EXTREMELY IMPORTANT if there is anybody in my audience that plans on doing this in the future. Keep in mind here that in water that cold, your body starts to shut down after about 2 minutes and you DIE at 30 minutes, so 15 seconds is LONG ENOUGH, thank you.

We got warm clothes on and jumped into a heated car immediately after this. Our legs were still tingly for about 45 minutes after that.

We did this as a joke, but seriously, that water is nothing to be trifled with. Sky and I are both excellent swimmers in really good condition. If you plan on doing this, make sure you'll survive before you get in the water!!

Do your research: Click Here to Learn More about Hypothermia

Ok, now you can watch the video:

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ice Caves

First, just check out this picture:

Ok, now we can proceed. So remember that time that I hiked up the west glacier trail in sandals? Well we passed a local that told me that I need to stick to the trail and not venture out onto the glacier. She said that, "Anyone who hikes on the glacier in sandals will die." So I heeded the warning and when we set out this morning to hike on the glacier, I intended on wearing sneakers. But I'm not a morning person and we got up so early (around 9am!) and I brought socks but forgot my sneakers. Oh well, I tried.

And then I got tired of wearing sandals and eventually went barefoot:

Overall, it was a fantastically fun hike. You can watch the video to find out if everyone who hikes on the glacier in sandals will, in fact, actually die:

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Holy Crap!

I just saw a bear! He looked kinda playful and I toyed with the idea of petting him, but ultimately decided against it. I would have, but people talk about how dangerous bears are here as much as they talk about how bad the water is in Mexico. So I didn't touch him, but I did take a picture with him. :)

This is Friday night, now. I just ran into a mama bear and her two cubs. Now that one scared me. A lot! So I made a video about it:

Friday, September 5, 2008

Tracy Arm

Now this was cool. If you have the time (it's pretty much an all day excursion) I highly recommend going to Tracy Arm. Here are some pictures, and I'll embed the video later (see sad update below):

**Sad Update**
My computer crashed and I lost all the video footage from the Tracy Arm trip. I had my film camera and used that a lot, so I didn't lose the entire trip. However, it takes me FOREVER to develop pictures, so you may not see those shots until some time in 2009 (2011 update: still not developed).

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I Saw A Glacier!

I've been insanely busy. Sorry about not posting for a few weeks here. And now I come in with a weak one. But whatever. We went over to Mendenhall Glacier and we hiked up the west glacier trail (in my sandals) and I took one of my favorite pictures to date:

Hope you're all doing well and for those of you getting ready to go back to school, I'm sorry. But good luck.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Juneau and then some

So remember back in April, I made a list of things that I was planning on? They all came true. I went to Utah, I had dinner with my aunt, I went to Sitka and made it ridiculously successful. Just thought I'd update you on that.

I'm probably not going to run the marathon though.

Last week they moved me up to Juneau to help run the store there. It's bigger and faster paced, with anywhere up to 6 big cruise ships in at any given time. I love it! The added ships, coupled with my trying to catch up on two months of sales, means I'm working about 14 to 18 hours a day. So if you're coming from YouTube and you're wondering why I haven't uploaded a video until now, there you go.

I still go back to Sitka every few weeks to check in and to see friends. Sitka still feels like home, much more than Juneau does, at least.

The season ends here at the end of September. I'll probably be back in Utah for a day or two, and then fly back to NYC. I plan to be in the City before October 5th.

Plans are in the works for Turkey and Greece in March/April next year. I'm stoked. :) That'll give me about 4 months (minus the christmas season) to get my book published (it's all done, I just have to mail it to my friend Savannah out in London for her review).

Life is very good. I'm extremely happy with how everything is playing out.

Leave a comment if you have any questions that weren't answered.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Heart Lake

I bought a bike.

When I was younger, I rode my bike over 75 miles across the Finger Lakes in upstate New York. I swore I would never get back on a bike again. And I've done pretty well with that promise since then. But it just seemed like the right thing to do up here: you know, being all "back to nature conservative-y" and stuff.

So my friend and I decided to test it out. We took them out to Heart Lake. It was a fun bike ride even though it was pouring like nobody's business. When we finally got to the lake, we were completely drenched.

So we decided to jump in. I know. I know. What were we thinking, right? I don't know. It seemed like a good idea at the time. It was FREEZING!!! But definitely worth the experience. :) Here's a video so you can experience it too:

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Happy 4th!!

Happy Birthday America from Sitka, AK!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Indian River Falls

My roommate Bryan and I (Matt wouldn't go after last time) hiked Indian River Falls. Don't let the guidebooks fool you. It's a LOT longer than they say. But we were determined, so we made it all the way (I've already been beaten by one hike this year, I wasn't about to lose again - btw, I haven't forgotten about Verstovia, I'm still planning on beating it some time). Go ahead and watch the video and then I put some pictures below too.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Still Alive...

Before my mom died, I used to call her after all my big adventures and tell her all about them. I would always start with the same line: Mom, before I get into this story, I just want you to remember that I'm talking to you right now. I'm alive and well with no serious injuries. Everything is ok. I thought it would help her keep things in perspective.

I've gotten myself into some serious situations before, but I always knew I would survive. Maybe not come out unscathed, but survive, yes.

Not so today.

We hiked Harbor Mountain today and things turned bad surprisingly quickly. We (my roommate Matt, who will never hike with me again, and I) hitchhiked out to the trailhead. The trail goes up and over the far side of the mountain, and then it comes down the near side into town and it's just a short walk to our apartment from there. As usual, no map, no water, no anything. At least I wore shoes. :) Well, we lost the trail at the top, and then found it. We went down this trail for about a mile or so and then it dead ends. So instead of hiking back up to the top and searching for another trail, we decided (rather foolishly, in hindsight) to just cut diagonally down the mountain towards town. We almost fell off cliffs, we both got cut up pretty badly, and there were several times when I wasn't real sure we were going to make it off alive. The one good thing is that we're in Alaska, so at least I knew we would never run out of sunlight. :)

But I'm alive and well. And I'm talking to you right now, so everything is ok. :)

Here's the short video:

**Update again**
My Mac crashed so I lost all the footage I had on this and so I won't be able to post the longer version like I had intended. Sad, huh? But at least this one was already up.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Starfish? In Alaska?

Yeah, they're everywhere. I don't know why but I always associate starfish with warm waters. Perhaps it's because I never saw them in New England, but I'm more familiar with them in the Caribbean. But yeah, they're here:

And if you have a minute, you have to go check this video out. My friend Elaina and I were walking around and saw a Limousine for sale, so we took it for a test drive. :)

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Busy Busy Busy

The store is open, cruise ships are coming, tourists are shopping. Life is good. We had a solid opening and I'm really impressed at how successful we've been thus far. I hope it keeps up.

But I'm not going to talk business on here. Just wanted to let you know that I'm super ridiculously busy and I haven't been able to explore much lately. But I will. When have you ever known me to go somewhere and not make time to get out there and have some crazy adventure, right?

For now, you can have this picture, which we took yesterday out at Indian River:

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Oh so picturesque...

Happy Earth Day!!

Sitka is BEAUTIFUL!!!

Just thought you'd like to know that my camera is happy.

By the way, that last picture of St. Michael's Church has Mt. Verstovia in the background. And we know from last week that the snow at the top is at least waste deep. :)

Oh, and I just posted a contest video on my Perfect Little Life channel. So if you want to try and win some free stuff, go over there and guess where I am. Well, where I was when I took the picture, you know where I am now. :)

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Verstovia Beat Me

Happy Tax Day!

So yesterday, my friend and I attempted to hike Mt. Verstovia. It's a beautiful mountain just next to Sitka. The base of the mountain (like all of Sitka) is a rain forest. So it's muggy and it gets rather warm when you hike. But then it cools off as you ascend the hill, and then it starts to snow, and then you're up to your waste in snow and it's an all-out blizzard. My friend stripped down to his shorts at the base and he was too stubborn to put his pants back on when it got COLD. I was in jeans and sneakers, so although I was not completely prepared, I was in better shape than he was. :)

I've never been on a hike where the weather and hiking conditions changed so dramatically in such a short amount of time (our entire time on the mountain from base to "top" back down to the base was about 3 hours). This is also the first hike EVER in my life that I have not completed. We couldn't make it to the top because of the weather conditions, although we came dang close. You can watch the video and decide for yourself if you think we should have proceeded.

My personal favorite part of the hike, aside from the rapid descent in the snow, was my hat. :)


Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Try to Keep Up...

Here's the plan:

Wed, April 2 - Fly to Utah, hang out with friends (WOOHOO!!)

Thurs, April 3 - Training at Del Sol HQ, dinner with my aunt

Fri, April 4 - Fly to Sitka, Alaska

April through September - Design, Build, Merchandise, Employ, and Open a new store, and make it ridiculously successful.

Sun, October 4 - Run the St. George Marathon. Hey, why not?


Wednesday, March 19, 2008

AK Here I Come!!

I know I quit to come back and live in New York, but my old company (Del Sol) just offered me a great opportunity. I'm going to be opening a new store in Sitka, Alaska. Apparently it's about 100 miles south of Juneau. It's a big island (over 4000 sq mi) but it's a small town (pop. 8000 from what I can tell). That's definitely gonna be a shock from living in NYC, but I think it'll be a fun experience.

I leave the beginning of April, so in just a few weeks. Don't you love how quickly my plans change?

Friday, March 7, 2008

Save a Child

I totally just sponsored a child. :)

Every day, I convince the good people of New York City to give me, a random stranger, their credit card information with a promise that they are making a difference in a child's life.

They do it. Even though I hadn't done it. But now I actually have the authority to tell them to do it, since I have my own child now. Here's a picture of her:

Her name is Marjorie, she's from the Philippines and she's 10. That's all I know for now, but I'll get more info in a week or so and then I'll keep you updated.

By the way, this definitely solidifies the Philippines as a future destination in my travels. :)

If you would like to sponsor a child, click here.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I love NYC weather

My new job has me working outside for 7 hours every day. Rain or shine. Or snow. Or sleet.

So last Friday when I woke up to 4 inches of snow, I bundled up layer upon layer and went to work.

Saturday was a little different. It was nice in the morning, but then it got bitterly cold. It snowed for about an hour and then that turned to rain. Then it cleared up and got warmer, only to drop below freezing about night time.

Today was about 45 degrees and beautiful - definitely sandal weather. I went to my dad's house and he still had snow in his driveway (he's been away for a few days). So my brother and I shoveled the driveway and the sidewalk. I had never shoveled snow in my sandals before. That was fun.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Hiking Gone Wrong

I posted this last week on youtube, but I thought I should put it up here on my blog because it is directly related to my exploration of our Perfect Little Planet. It's the "Hiking Gone Wrong" saga from Mexico. I think only my mother saw the original videos that I posted a year and a half ago. If you haven't seen it yet, it's a little over 6 minutes long, so get comfortable and hit play:

I'll post another story tonight. So if you're reading this on Sunday or later, click here.

Thanks for watching!!

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

'08 is Great

2007 was a great year (Aruba and my book). It was even better than 2006 (Mexico and PHX). Which definitely beat out '05 (Utah and NYC). Which somehow managed to squeak by my amazing 2004 (Europe). Which was able to top my incredible 2003 (Cambodia/Thailand). And I'd venture to say that that beat my 2000-2002 (the mission). And '99? Graduation and Disneyworld. '98? That's when I got cancer.

It seems that cancer started the most wonderful snowball effect in my life. Every year gets progressively better than the previous. Not that '98 was a low point in my life at all. That was also a great year. It just makes me wonder: how good can it get? I have an idea that I haven't seen anything yet.

'08 is setting up to be (yet again) the best year of my life:

- I got an apartment in the Bronx. How cool is that?
- My book is done. Now I can work on getting it published. I wrote a book. Seriously, that's so cool to say.
- I have a vision for my website. I just have to make it a reality.
- I am LOVING youtube. I love the community and I love making videos and people are actually watching them. :) That makes me happy.
- I'm finally going to be somewhat "stable" (I have the apartment, hopefully I'll actually live there) so I can have an actual relationship. DOWN WITH FLINGS!!

Just thought I'd share. I am really excited about the future.

I hope your '08 is even greater than you imagined.