,

Waking a sleeping lion in Africa

Normally Michael doesn’t shriek like a tween girl who just found out One Direction was breaking up. But he was this day. Being up close to the open jaws of a lion will do that to you. We had arrived in Africa a few days earlier for a safari…
,

The time we almost drove off a cliff in Ireland

Driving on a fog-moistened slippery dirt road, perched precariously on the side of a mountain, is not everyone’s notion of the ideal vacation. Nor is it ours either. Yet for some reason here we were doing just that, while driving the Ring…
Nevada's Loneliest Road: a desolate but beautiful 2-lane highway that passes through 7 mountain ranges and high desert plateaus
,

Driving the Loneliest Road in America

When we first heard about driving the Loneliest Road in America—otherwise known as U.S. Highway 50—that crosses the barren hinterlands of central Nevada, we were intrigued. In a 1986 article for Life Magazine, the American Automobile…
bison in yellowstone park
, ,

Visiting Yellowstone in September and October

It was the summer of 1969 and, as Old Faithful was about to send its regular timed flume of scalding hot water about 140 feet into the air for a spectacular sunset performance, the crowds gathered in hushed anticipation. The geyser had been…
,

Is California City a ghost town?

As we've been driving around the country seeking ghost towns we came across one that was unusual; the California City ghost town has a population of over 14,000 people so why would it be considered a ghost town? A bit of background first.…
Transfagarasan Highway
,

A twisted drive on the Transfagarasan Highway

Brakes? Check. Map? Check. No fear? Check.  We were about to drive on the  Transfăgărășan Highway, made legendary by the BBC program Top Gear as one of the world’s great road trips. The winding, twisting road carries intrepid…
,

The California town at earthquake Ground Zero

The San Andreas Fault at Parkfield California The town of Parkfield, California sits astride the San Andreas Fault and proudly bills itself as "The Earthquake Capital of the World." On the water tower outside the Parkfield Cafe they even declare…
Surf Ballroom Buddy Holly final concert
,

Buddy Holly's final show: Visiting the Surf Ballroom

In Don McLean’s song American Pie, he refers to the death of rock-and-roll star Buddy Holly on February 3, 1959 due to a plane crash in an Iowa cornfield as “the day the music died.” Earlier Holly had played a concert at the Surf…
,

The 10 spookiest ghost towns in America

It's that time of year with Halloween approaching that we start thinking of all things haunted. Here are 10 of the spookiest ghost towns in America, places that were once thriving but are now abandoned. A visit to any one of them is intriguing,…
,

Trailing the Ghost of Elvis through Memphis

Memphis is a city oozing with musical spirits, with the ghost of Elvis Presley topping the list. Although most people know Memphis as Elvis’ home at the peak of his career, it’s also the city where he grew up. Perched on a bluff high above…
,

Road trip tips: 7 rules for a smooth ride

Whenever you take a road trip it's important to set up some rules of the road.  A simple road trip tip (or seven) can keep a dream drive from turning into a nightmare.  You want wide-open spaces and adventure, not wrong turns and flat…
,

Road Trip Tales: A one-lane twist on Route 66

There is no better classic American road trip than a drive on Route 66 from Chicago to Santa Monica, California. Although much of the road has been replaced by interstates, there are still plenty of spots to drive on the old rutted concrete…
, ,

Road trip in Africa: How to take a self-drive safari

Is it possible to travel on your own in Africa?  I really wanted to go on a safari, but Michael's not too big on nature stuff and neither of us like group tours.  The challenge was on: I needed to find a way for us to take a road trip,…
,

Road Trip Book Review: Harry Truman's Excellent Adventure

Ahh what a simpler time. When a recently minted ex-President could hop in the car with his wife and take a road trip, unescorted by any security, halfway across the country to visit his daughter and some friends. Even though Harry…
kangaroo animal crossing sign
, ,

Lions and tigers and ... animal crossing signs around the world

When we were driving all over the world we saw some unusual animal crossing signs that were different from the typical signs for deer we see at home. As we bounced along some pretty rough roads we took these warnings seriously, can you imagine…
,

Secrets hidden in the fog of Dartmoor, England

We sought a break from the bustle of London at a remote cottage perched on the edge of Dartmoor; the legendary, perhaps haunted, bog in southwest England that achieved fame in novels such as The Hound of the Baskervilles. Our visions of long…
how to drive on the left
, , ,

7 tips for how to drive on the left side of the road

With a little planning it's easy to drive on the left side of the road. On our around-the-world journey we spent more time driving on the left side of the road than we did on the right; doing so in Ireland, the UK, Australia, New Zealand and…
Picher Oklahoma abandoned church
,

Picher Oklahoma: A modern American ghost town

Picher, Oklahoma is a harsh example of the effects mining can have on an area. Once a major producer of lead and zinc, the town is now a ghost town as the lead came back to haunt them.  The air, soil and water around Picher became contaminated…