Archive for the ‘North America’ Category


Sunday, November 30th, 2008

This was a forwarded email about Texas. We loved it. Texas within its boundaries is a wide land with so many curveballs. I would love to travel to each one of these places… some day I promise..

Need to be cheered up?

Happy, Texas 79042
Pep , Texas 79353
Smiley , Texas 78159
Paradise , Texas 76073

Rainbow , Texas 76077
Sweet Home , Texas 77987
Comfort , Texas 78013
Friendship, Texas 76530

Love the Sun?

Sun City , Texas 78628
Sunrise , Texas 76661
Sunset, Texas 76270
Sundown, Texas 79372
Sunray , Texas 79086
Sunny Side , Texas 77423

Want something to eat?
Bacon , Texas 76301
Noodle , Texas 79536
Oatmeal , Texas 78605
Turkey , Texas 79261
Trout, Texas 75789
Sugar Land , Texas 77479
Salty, Texas 76567
Rice , Texas 75155
Sweetwater, Texas 79556

Why travel to states or countries? Texas has them all!

Detroit , Texas 75436
Colorado City , Texas 79512
Cleveland , Texas 77327
Dayton, Texas 77535
Denver City , Texas 79323
Klondike , Texas 75448
Nevada , Texas 75173
Memphis , Texas 79245
Miami, Texas 79059
Boston , Texas 75570
Santa Fe , Texas 77517
Tennessee Colony, Texas 75861
Reno , Texas 75462
Athens , Texas 75751
Canadian, Texas 79014
China , Texas 77613
Dublin, Texas  76446
Egypt , Texas 77436
Ireland , Texas 76538
Turkey , Texas 79261
London , Texas 76854
New London , Texas 75682
Paris, Texas 75460

No need to travel to Washington D.C.

Whitehouse , Texas 75791
We even have a city named after our planet!
Earth , Texas 79031
Energy , Texas 76452
Blanket , Texas 76432
Winters, Texas

Need Office Supplies?

Staples, Texas 78670

Men are from Mars, women are from
Venus , Texas 76084

For the kids…
Kermit , Texas 79745
Elmo , Texas 75118

Nemo , Texas 76070
Tarzan , Texas 79783
Winnie , Texas 77665
Sylvester, Texas 79560

Other city names in Texas , to make you smile…..

Frognot, Texas 75424

Bigfoot , Texas 78005
Hogeye, Texas 75423
Cactus , Texas 79013
Notrees , Texas 79759
Best, Texas 76932
Veribest , Texas 76886
Kickapoo , Texas 75763
Dime Box , Texas 77853
Old Dime Box , Texas 77853
Telephone , Texas 75488
Telegraph , Texas 76883
Whiteface , Texas 79379

Twitty, Texas 79079

Cut n Shoot, Texas

Gun Barrell City , Texas

Hoop And Holler, Texas

Ding Dong, Texas

Muleshoe , Texas

And last but not least, the Anti-Al Gore City
Kilgore , Texas 75662

Day Trip to Catalina Island

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

Finding the right thing to do in the given frame of time at any destination is probably the hardest part. It just happened that we would be spending a long weekend in Newport Beach, CA sandwiched between San Diego and Los Angeles. Both cities have so much to offer and after a time it is just overwhelming to decide what we actually want to visit. Our schedule was also quite hectic and we just had one day to check out the sights. And we decided to set sailing to Catalina Island.

Located off the California coast, Catalina Island offers the perfect day trip for anyone looking to spend a day enjoying a laid-back day. We spent the day, hand-in-hand, laughing and talking, soaking in the Californian sun and letting the history of the island seep in.

Catalina Island is small enough to be covered in a day and offers all kinds of activities to suit any traveler. Our plans were to catch sight of the elusive or the not-so-elusive wildlife of the island, soak in some sun and just unwind. The island does offer a lot of hiking trails, kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving and other outdoor activities.

Getting to Catalina Island is half the fun. The island is accessible by air or sea only. We took a speed boat/ferry out of Balboa – Newport Beach on a beautiful Sunday morning just like 300+ others. The ferry takes around an hour to 1.5 hours to reach Catalina Island and it is a wonderful feeling to be on the open sea and moving at really high speeds. During the gorgeous summer days the ferry does get filled up really fast so make a reservation ahead of time.

Avalon is the only city in Catalina Island. More than 70% of the island is conserved natural reserve so most of the activities are based out of Avalon. With a population of around 3000 people cluttered around 1 major roads, Avalon can hardly be called a city. But it has all the charms of a beach town – the beach side cafes that play loud music and offer happy-hours all through the day, the charming mom-and-pop kind of delis and the touristy souvenir shops and classy boutiques.

If you plan to explore Catalina Island on your own, rent a golf cart (cars are allowed only by special permit in the island and currently to get a special permit there is a waiting list of more than 15 years) or a bicycle and enjoy the landscape. The area is quite hilly and a major chunk of the island is accessible only by special permit.

Another way to enjoy the island is to take a guided bus tour of the area. We chose this option, mainly because we were too lazy to navigate and read a guide book and understand the history of the area by ourselves. We had booked our excursion online through one of the many tour operators in the island. You can also book them on arriving at the island but remember many tours tend to sell out fast.

The explore the island tour starts at sea level at Avalon and goes up till the Airport-in-the sky. The airport itself is nothing much but a depleted barn which doubles as a hangar, an exhibit about the history of the island, a runway, a few small biplanes and sheer cliffs.

More than the history it was the fauna of Catalina Island that intrigued us. As with any other place, most of Catalina Island’s natural fauna and flora were almost extinct (or extinct) by the time the area became a conservancy. The conservancy slowly is trying to bring back natural fauna – the island fox, the bald-eagle, sea otters to the place. With modern developments and hindrances to the natural way of life the battle faced by the conservancy is quite intimidating

We were not able to catch sight of any foxes but we did see some bisons. These huge creatures are not natives of the area. They were brought in the early 1920’s for the filming of the movie – The Vanishing American and were just left behind and with time the herd just grew.

The drive opens up spectacular vistas and seascapes. The blue sea doted with boats and yatches, the sheer mountain doted with sparse trees, red soil all add a sense of beauty to the place. Definitely, a must-visit-place!

There are other activities like a trip in a glass-bottom boat, a submarine, kayaks, parasails etc offered. We took the submarine trip just of the heck of it and it did not amuse us much. But the younger ones on the submarine had a field day. So add it to your list if you have a young one.

The beach was a big let down. We were hoping to spend sometime soaking the sun on the beach but Avalon unfortunately does not have a good beach. In fact, what passes off as a beach is tons of beach sand dumped in a block and on the Sunday we were there, the place was packed like sardines in a can. Not my idea of a beach lazing day.

Avalon also has quite a few bed and breakfasts catering for the weekend tourist and many people come off California mainland to spend the weekend in Avalon. A trip different from many others we could have done but something we will cherish forever.