Tuesday, May 31, 2011

5. Meet a random stranger on the road from Plattsburgh (current/past resident/alumni)

My personal goal number five was to meet a random stranger on the road from Plattsburgh.  I suppose this whole idea came from the fact that we met a man who lived in Plattsburgh back in 1971 on our honeymoon.  We indirectly achieved this goal in Sapphire, NC.  Jon and I spent over two weeks visiting NC.  We started in Asheville, took the blue ridge parkway to Raleigh, jutted over to Charlotte and went nearly full circle to Sapphire, NC located in Nantahala National Park.

Nantahala National Park was absolutely gorgeous.  Every which way you drive or turn, you have the opportunity to see a new waterfall.  We were staying with our grandparents in their timeshare.  Jon and I had spent all day driving from one waterfall to the next.  At the end of our day trip of waterfalls, we went to see one last one, the tallest (or debatable to be the second tallest) east of the Mississippi River.

When we got back to my grandparent's, my grandpa informed me that he had met a man who graduated from Plattsburgh in 1951!  We searched for him while we kayaked the next day and when we were around the area having dinner.  We didn't see him, but I feel this goal was pretty much achieved through my grandpa.  :)

For photos of NC and the waterfalls, click on the volume 3 photos to the right!

Monday, May 30, 2011

7. Make one new friend that we keep in touch with after our trip

The title of this blog is what I am going to write about today.  After our cruise, Jon and I stayed with an old family friend for a few days .  They live in League City, Texas and graciously offered their home to us while we visited the area.  On one of our days, we visited the NASA Space Center.  They offered some really great exhibits, but the best part was a trolley tour around the center.  It brought you to a large building which demonstrates much of the space craft and robotics used to make it all happen.  The trolley stops at Rocket Park where you can walk right up to engines and large space shuttles.

The wait for this trolley was long.  Jon had on one of his old racing shirts.  Back in 2009 or 2010, Jon had run an uphill race up Whiteface Mountain.  The man behind us noticed Jon's shirt.  It sparked a conversation between Jon, myself and our new friend Bernie.  He shared absolutely amazing stories with us in line that we sat with him on the trolley.  The trolley ride take approximately one hour to get to the various buildings and meanwhile, we're  listening to the overhead story behind NASA.  During our breaks, Bernie told us he was a recovering crack addict and is an iron man athlete. When he went into crack rehabilitation, he got addicted to something new.  Iron Mans.  This incredible man is sponsored, travels all over the world to do the iron man, and was in Houston to do the Iron Man himself.  He's been clean for 11 years and he proposed to his wife after 3 years of being clean at t he end of one of his iron mans.  He fell to the ground after finished and proposed!

At the end of the trolley ride, unbeknown to us he bought us a "memory photo" of Jon and I on the trolley car.  We were so humbled and shocked.  It seems small but those photos cost $30!  Then,  Bernie gave us his email.  I thought Jon kept the paper, he thought I kept the paper.  Well, neither of us can find it.  So, Jon tried various emails that we thought it was and no response.  The good news is that I just found him on facebook.  I'm gonna friend Bernie.  Thus,  Jon achieves his 7th goal of "making one new friend that we keep in touch with after our trip!  Jon wants to do iron mans in the future and Bernie is a great resource and I am confident would love to help!

For pictures of the space center, please click on Vol. 2 photos to the right!    

Sunday, May 29, 2011


If you notice on the goal section of this blog, Jon and I had to cross out a lot of the goals.  Why?  Well, our trip was cut a month short due to our enrollment in Peace Corps.  But, we've made a few of the goals we planned and even met some of our expectations.

So, since I fell miserably behind on my blog.  I am going to write stories of how we met the goals or reached an expectation.  These stories won't necessarily be chronological.  But, it will give insight as to our trip in general!

Sorry that this didn't worry out how I had hoped.  It was too hard to write on the go.