Exploring – Green Ridge State Forest by truck

It appears that winter is already over. In fact it seems like it’s been over for a month. It’s been unseasonably warm with temperatures in the 70s on multiple days in Maryland. I suppose I didn’t take my own advice all that much this winter to go outside in the cold, but we wrapped up the winter with a great trip to Western Maryland.

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iOverlander – How to find a place to stay on the fly

iOverlander - on the South Fork Eel River

This post is about the iOverlander App. It is the best tool I know of that finds you free or very cheap places to stay when traveling and exploring the outdoors. It’s geared toward RV travel, but it can be very useful for finding places when traveling by car, van, bike, or even walking. Many of these places come with incredible scenery too.

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Arashiyama – The Ryokan Experience and Nature

View from the Arashiyama Bridge - 10-23-2019

After a few days in Osaka and Kyoto, we moved outside of the big city to Arashiyama; located on the outskirts of Kyoto. This is more of my kind of town since I’m not a big-city kind of guy. However, the big cities in Japan are remarkably clean, safe, and quiet compared to the rest of the world. In Japan, I didn’t feel as compelled to “escape the city” as I usually do in big cities.

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Osaka and Kyoto – cities and temples

It turns out we picked a few temples for the itinerary. I didn’t know what to see in Japan. So when we decided to travel to Japan, my wife did most of the planning. Looking at the map, there are too many temples to see them all, but I suppose we made it to the major temples. Additionally, we saw most of the major attractions and popular street markets in two major cities.

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Lost in translation – Japan edition

Similar to China, I was able to keep myself entertained with signage in Japan. The Japanese are a little more diligent in ensuring that their English translations make sense. Some things still get through though. It’s interesting to see how different cultures convey rules and ordinances in signs. Products can be advertised in an interesting way too. Here are a few signs from our time in Japan:

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Hong Kong during the protests – October 2019

In the previous post, as I praised the variety of things to do in Hong Kong, I failed to mention the current protests.

Hong Kong is a very safe place to begin with, and it’s a shame that some of the protests have turned violent. We did see some protesters and evidence of vandalism. However the media in China and the US appears to overinflate much of the protest activities (surprise).

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