The Shortest Distance

The shortest distance between two points is a straight line. At least that’s what I was taught in school. I didn’t know about the exception:

“A straight line isn’t always the shortest distance between two points. The shortest distance between two points depends on the geometry of the object/surface in question. For flat surfaces, a line is indeed the shortest distance, but for spherical surfaces, like Earth, great-circle distances actually represent the true shortest distance.”

Perhaps it’s not about the two points, but HOW we move between them. 

Depending on the distance, walking is my favorite mode of transportation, (no less than six miles per day). 

If we take the truck, it means we’re on a road trip, and you have to love that! 

In the Fiat? I’m running errands in town. 

On our bikes, or in the plane? We’re enjoying a goof-off day.

What about you? What’s your favorite way to get between Point A and Point B?

© lauriebuchanan.com

Cinco de Mayo

Today is the 5th of May—Cinco de Mayo. It brings to mind our favorite Mexican restaurant—Old Town Mexican Cafe and Cantina—in the Old Town section of San Diego. It’s the “Home of the original Handmade Tortilla Makers.” Authentic and delicious! 

While waiting for your meal you can watch tortillas being made—by hand. You can also admire the festive, colorful bar stools.

Belly up to the bar” means to move near something. However, when looking up the etymology, I found all sorts of interesting information. I especially enjoyed this improbable meaning that was said to be given by a tour guide at an old Lexington tavern:

“The origin of ‘belly up to the bar’ goes back to Colonial times. If your belly could reach the bar, you were old enough to drink.”

What is it that you are belly-ing up to?

© lauriebuchanan.com

ON hiatus – OFF the grid

For the next three Tuesdays you won’t receive an email notification that I’ve published a fresh post. Why? Because I’m ON hiatus and OFF the grid from February 1-19. 

I’m not going to share my exact location at this time, but here’s a hint. The photo below is a well-known landmark a stone’s throw from the location I’ll be at.

If you know where it is, shhhh, don’t tell anyone. It’ll be our little secret. I’m going on a deep-dive and won’t come back up for air until I return to Boise.

When was the last time you went on hiatus?

© lauriebuchanan.com

Adventure Awaits

There are no two ways about it — I ❤️ TO TRAVEL! 

When I mind-map each year, the four categories that I break down into small attainable steps are health, family/friends, travel, and writing/speaking. Stateside or international—planes, trains, or automobiles—for me, travel is a cornerstone.

Whether I go by myself, with Len, or with my sister, I enjoy the sense of adventure. I make a practice of packing light. Really light. I never check my baggage: just two pieces, a wheeled carry-on, and a laptop tote. And I enjoy arriving at the airport early so that I can people-watch. 

The moment I buckle into my seat, I pop my earbuds in (the international signal for “please do not disturb”), pull out my Kindle, and read until the plane lands.

I currently have four sets of round-trip airline tickets waiting for use in my travel folder. My first adventure of the year is coming up soon. I’ll share more about that in next week’s post.

Do you have up-and-coming travel plans?

© lauriebuchanan.com

Open Sesame

I love to travel, and when I do, I enjoy photographing the variety of doors I happen upon. A door is like a book—you don’t know what lies within until you open it. Something pleasant? Something scary? An adventure? Something that lulls you to sleep?

Left—Nova Scotia. Upper right—the Highlands of Scotland. Bottom right—Quebec.

Remember the story of Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves? All Baba used the magical phrase — Open Sesame — to open the mouth of a cave in which forty thieves had hidden a treasure.

Santorini, Greece

And while there have been times I’ve not felt welcome, I’ve never had a door not open to me—regardless of my age, gender, skin color, politics, or spiritual tradition. I’m aware that’s sadly not the case for everyone. 

[bctt tweet=”Have you ever had a door not open to you, or shut in your face?” username=”@TuesWithLaurie”]

Have you ever had a door not open to you, or shut in your face?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Wind Energy

On our drive across and back Washington state for a speaking engagement at Write on the Sound, in Edmonds, WA, we passed zillions of hop yards, apple orchards, bing cherry orchards, and vineyards.

We also passed wind turbine farms, galore! 

At one point, we had the opportunity to get an up-close-and-personal look at one of these giants and learned that: 

  • Each individual, joint-free, seamless blade is 148 feet long, 11.2 feet wide, and weighs 23,098 pounds!
  • Standing over 400 feet tall, each complete wind turbine has three blades, with a rotor diameter of more than 300 feet — nearly the same length as a football field.
  • One wind turbine can power up to 700 residential homes with environmentally friendly, carbon-free electricity.
  • A single wind turbine needs approximately one-half acre of land and uses 40 acres of wind space.
  • Blades sweep an area of 75,000 square feet with each rotation.

[bctt tweet=”What’s energizes you?” username=”@TuesWithLaurie”]


What energizes you?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Potcakes

Last year I hosted a writing retreat on Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas. It was my second time there, and I loved it! One of the interesting things about this exotic location is the potcake dogs.

According to Wikipedia, “a potcake dog is a mixed-breed dog type found on several Caribbean islands. Its name comes from the congealed peas and rice mixture that local residents traditionally eat, as the rice that cakes to the bottom of the pot would go to the dogs. Although appearance varies, potcakes generally have smooth coats, cocked ears, and long faces. A group of potcakes is known as a parliament.”

PHOTO

In my experience, the dogs—who generally travel in small groups—are friendly. They’re usually looking for a food handout. If you accommodate them (which I don’t think you’re supposed to, but I did), then you have friends for life!

The same thing happened when I was in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

And the same thing happened when I was on a writing sabbatical in Darby, Montana—only this time, it was with a small herd of deer!

Would you feed a stray animal—even if you’re not supposed to?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Rock On!

Last week Len, Willa, and I took a road trip to Puyallup, WA (just outside of Tacoma). 

  • Len attended an EAA (Experimental Aircraft Association) Chapter Leadership Bootcamp event. 
  • I had uninterrupted writing to accomplish. 
  • Willa? She simply loves road trips!

On the way back to Boise, we stopped at STONEHENGE. Yes, you read that right. We stopped at the American Stonehenge in Maryhill, Washington.

Stonehenge 1 watermark

The Maryhill Stonehenge—a replica of England’s Stonehenge—is built on a bluff overlooking the Columbia River, the border between Washington and Oregon. It was commissioned in the early 20th century by the wealthy entrepreneur Sam Hill, and dedicated on July 4, 1918, as a memorial to the people who had died in World War I.

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We were wondering if the expression “What in the Sam Hill?” is based on the Maryhill Stonehenge Sam Hill. According to Wikipedia, it’s not. They explain: 

Sam Hill is an American English slang phrase, a euphemism or minced oath for ‘the devil’ or ‘hell’ personified (as in, ‘What in the Sam Hill is that?’). The ‘Sam’ coming from (sal(o)mon an oath) and ‘Hill’’from hell. Etymologist Michael Quinion and others date the expression back to the late 1830s.”

I lived in Washington state for five years and never once heard about the Maryhill Stonehenge. Finding out about it rocked my world.

What’s the most recent thing that’s rocked your world? 

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Cowabunga!

In July, I enjoyed a week at my sister’s beach-side home in Cardiff by the Sea during the first leg of my book tour at The Book Catapult in San Diego. 

Moonlight Beach is but one of the many jewels in the beach communities of Cardiff by the Sea and Encinitas, California. It’s located in a residential neighborhood at the bottom of a steep incline that gently slopes into the Pacific Ocean. 

This well-loved beach receives a lot of face-time from local volleyball players because of the three beach courts. And with a large playground, ample picnic tables, lifeguards, and a snack bar, it’s family-friendly and perfect for a picnic or a day in the sun. The icing on the cake? Plenty of clean restrooms and showers.

While there, I enjoyed breakfast at the ever-popular Pipes Cafe, shopped at Seaside Market, visited the Self-Realization Fellowship Temple, and checked out the Cardiff Kook Statue. Cowabunga!

When was the last time you hung ten or stuck your toes in ocean water?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com

Ready to Rumble?

Planes, trains, and automobiles—there’s no doubt that we travel a lot. Not only do Len and I love it, but Willa does too!

Willa catching G-force

One of the cool things about state-side travel in a vehicle is the rumble strips. They’re not in every state, but we’ve discovered they’re prevalent in the Pacific Northwest.

If your vehicle is just a wee bit further into the left lane than you intended, you hear a loud rumble noise that captures your attention in a quick hurry. And if you were starting to doze off, it’s enough to wake you up!

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, a center line rumble strip is a longitudinal safety feature installed at or near the center line of a paved roadway. It is made of a series of milled or raised elements intended to alert inattentive drivers (through vibration and sound) that their vehicles have left the travel lane.

What was the last thing that grabbed your attention?

© TuesdaysWithLaurie.com