Archive for the ‘Travel Challenges’ Category

114 Days Later

Wednesday, December 17th, 2014

Paddington says farewell!

Paddington says farewell!

When you start to look like your passport picture, it’s time to go home.  So I guess it’s time.

It has been a trip where God has opened our eyes to the wonder of His creation (and  also showed us where man is screwing it up). I love the churches and their testament to the faith of generations past. I love the flavors of the food and drink that are uniquely regional. I soak up the beauty of the countryside, and cringe at the overwhelming number of people who can be in one place at one time. The people who joined us on our sojourn added their flavor to the experience, and the events back home that we missed tugged at our hearts. We prayed more, hugged more, fought too much, ate more, spent more and marveled more.

So I guess,a trip like this is MORE of everything. There is s depth of appreciation that comes with a trip like this: for what I saw, what I left behind, and those that cared about us in both arenas.

I missed so much back home, but I would have missed a chunk of the world that I was blessed to have experienced. But it’s time…

Where Next???

Wednesday, October 29th, 2014

We have 3 days to figure out where to spend the next 3 weeks,and we need suggestions!

We drop off our car in Munich next week and are footloose until we have to be in Basel, Switzerland on the 27th of nov.

We were mulling over Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Mittenwald????

We will be on trains and toting our bags.

Any and all suggestions would be appreciated. Tell us YOUR experiences!

Driving in Italy

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014


Hats off to Steve who usually keeps us on the road and fends off the adversarial, oncoming, out of their f-minds Italian driving maniacs. Did I make that clear?…lol)

We’ve amassed hundreds of dollars in tolls, killed millions of bugs while driving through farm land, and felt every one of the kazillion potholes those tolls are supposed to pay for. But today took the cake: three cars who all had the same idea simultaneously, let’s pass the truck ahead! Three cars abreast on a two lane jockeying to get by the large transport. Our jaws dropped open in disbelief, but they narrowly made it after seeing who would then be the leader of the pack.

Italians “take” the road.

If you hesitate or even think about being polite and letting some one cut in, BAM! it’s done and they sneak in between you and the narrowest space.

Steve has been keeping his cool while I strangle the handle and clutch at my seat belt and cease breathing. My only thrill is counting all the men who just pull over to the side of the road and let nature call. I’m still trying for a photo so you can have a visual!

We pray every day for God’s angels to protect us and the car, and indeed they have been working overtime!


Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

Despite it being October, there are still a heck of a lot of tourists roaming Italy.There are Germans seeking sunshine with their walking poles and backpacks. Plenty of Australians who do know how to mellow out. Enjoying the culture are masses of French,and the Brits are seeking cooler weather after a hot,humid summer, and the Americans are brighter and louder and stop to talk to anyone who they hear speak English!

But by far, the largest, most obnoxious, overwhelming group is the ASIANS!! Multiple cameras, high fashion clothing, young and silly and frequently pushy.I had one tap me on the shoulder and ask me to move as she wanted to take a picture and I was in the way. And they all have so much electronics it’s amazing they are noticing what’s around them.

Today the hikers were put out cause the rain had closed the trails and the locals were put out because all the trains and buses were packed with those crazy tourists.

I think I’d like to invite them all for a glass of wine, we could start world peace here in Cinque Terre!


All Eyes

Sunday, November 17th, 2013

More people are killed by falling coconuts than by lightning.

Currently I watch where I walk for centipedes, tarantulas, midges, mosquitoes, cockroaches, rocks, roots, x-back snakes and never drying potholes. Now I have to look up too?

For any ‘doubting thomas’ who envisioned this tropical life as a vacation assignment, should live here for even a day. You can stop and make a pb&j sandwich for Carson, but if you look a way the ants will carry it off.  You have a well but it needs to be pumped for water. They just got a shower head installed by their landlord, but previously it was ladled water from a bucket. Sewage is septic but some of that gets into the riverlets and then into the ocean. All trash is fair game for critters and must be dealt with immediately.

Electricity is fickle but we do have air conditioning units in the 2 bedrooms. Washing is a challenge as the local laundermat has two machines in the open under a tin roof and today the dryers weren’t working. No internet but that’s a mixed blessing. There is a beautiful ocean to look at with stifling heat. So it takes a lot of planning to bring your food in from afar and store it away from bugs and mold, cook and clean up immediately, get your clothes laundered, not track in muck, check for bugs, stay cool, raise two kids, and now plan and carry out your ministry here in Panama to a populace that waxes and wanes with the tourist season and are indifferent because they need that much energy each day just to live.  It’s not my version of Paradise.

post script: The other morning Jonathan was disgusted to find a colony of ants in his raisin bran but food is precious.  So he threw his bowl full in a hot skillet to kill them off and proceeded to eat his toasted cereal and the added protein. yum


Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

soleilbirth Steve and I left home on Oct.11, 2013 to head out again to Orlando (for work) and Daytona ( to see my dad) and then to Panama to await the birth of our grandaughter, Soleil Naomi Wilt. The princess took her sweet time as she was 9 days late, but appeared on the scene at 20″ and 8lbs 12 oz. We are watching big brother, Carson, while mom and dad have a couple days at the hospital to rest up for real life.

Lots of first impressions of Panama, but I know it’s not a complete picture yet as we are in the outskirts of town (Panama City) and not yet to the Wilt home-base in Santa Catalina, some 6 hours away in the jungle.

pararisaThat comes after we spend 10 days in a missionary compound where it is busy and we have been sequestered (my meaning=holed up) in two bedrooms. Our bedroom is about 8′ x 12′ with 4 bunk beds lining the walls with just enuff space to walk down the  middle. Mind you, that and a bathroom is it! We make our meals in the communal kitchen and retreat to the bedroom. The bunks do not allow for sitting without hitting ones head. It feels like you’re getting in a drawer to go to sleep. But it’s clean and free and it is what it is.

Now I guess my only complaint is there is NO HOT WATER. We clean with a lot of bleach but that shower can be awfully shocking. KC and Jono’s bedroom is next door with a double bed and one bunk set. We visit by sitting all around the double bed. Oh, they do have 3 folding chairs — the luxury suite.

It rains a whole bunch here in Panama, it’s a Jungle out there! But it’s not scattered showers, it’s a bucket thrown at you. The country is very green, but they are rather trashy; no litter laws. I guess they figure that something will grow over the mess eventually. The canal that bisects the country is a couple blocks away and the ships are huge! They are enlarging the canal to allow for even bigger ships. Lots of little tug boats scurrying around working 24/7.

But first impression: if you stare at it long enough, it will Rust, Mold, or become Overgrown.

A Box Of Q-Tips

Friday, September 20th, 2013

I know I’m a little behind on posts and photos, they’ve kept us moving.

But something to make you grin.

We went on a Grand Circle cruise last summer and had a great time. Though the passengers were retirees and we were on the younger side, we had plenty of free time to take off and spread our wings. When we decided to get an overview of Ireland via a land tour, we went with Grand Circle again. Well a bus tour draws a much more senior crowd. All you have to do is get off the bus, get your room key, breakfast together and look out the window as we roll along (simplified).  Well if you are at the back of the boxy bus and look down at all the folk sitting there, you see a LOT of white, fuzzy- haired folk and a few bald men. Someone said we looked like a box of Q-tips.

I’m sporting my hair dark red to shake up the mix.

Blessed Assurance Sept. 6,2013

Saturday, September 7th, 2013

We are back traveling the friendly skies, and for those of you who know me, know that I am a white knuckle flier. But it doesn’t keep me from going anywhere, it just makes me a nervous wreck. However I had the most amazing experience this time.

As the plane was backing away and headed for the tarmac in San Diego it started to rain. Mind you we are having a heat wave and it’s 6 a.m.! As we took off it was under the most beautiful rainbow. How many times does THAT happen?  

Well the flights to Newark and then Barcelona were beautiful and peaceful and I truthfully can say I enjoyed them. Praise a wonderful God who calmed my trembling heart.

Look Right!

Saturday, July 21st, 2012

I nearly did it, or rather did myself “in”.  I looked left when I should have looked right first as they are all driving on the wrong side of the road! Thank you guardian angel, I don’t know how I didn’t end up as a hood ornament!

Look Left

pic courtesy of andy

Yikes, Bikes!

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

Well, if you have followed this blog over the years, you know I fall down a lot. It’s all of those old cobbles and tiles that get me down while I am looking up at all the scenery.

And if you ever had to pay attention to where you’re going it’s in Amsterdam! The whole country, for that matter, lives on their bicycles! So when I’m not dodging trams, or cars, or buses, I’m being run down by old ladies on bikes. One million have their own lanes and they have the right away over all other modes of transportation. This is your average “bike parking lot”.