Wifes Trip to Colorado

Carl and I have always wanted to live somewhere that we can find an adventure every day, so when my friend and bride-to- be said her bachelorette would be in Denver, Colorado, I was thrilled! The cheaper option was to drive, which is only a ten-hour ride from Tulsa, OK. The best part about driving was seeing the Rocky Mountains get closer and closer, and eventually getting close enough to see the snow covered peaks.

This was a short trip, but we were able to pack several activities into one day.

We started off Saturday morning driving to Golden, Colorado for a Coors Brewery Tour. Golden is home to School of Mines, which is one of the best colleges for engineering, geology, and mining. The Coors Brewery Tour started with a tour of downtown Golden. One of the coolest facts I learned is that Adolph Coors, founder of Coors Brew, was only 26 years old when he started the well-known company. After the bus tour, we walked through the brewery and saw the production of Coors while listening to the company’s history. At the end of the tour, we got to sample three beers! The best part is- the whole tour was free, including the beer tasting!

After the brewery, we headed northwest to Estes Park. On our way to Estes Park, which was about a two and a half hour drive, we got to wind through the mountains and see a bunch of Elk! On the way up the mountains, the temperature dropped about thirty degrees. It began to rain, which turned to sleet, and before we knew it, there was blizzard-like snow all around us! We finally got to the top where there were several different trails to chose from. There are all kinds of options whether you want an all day hike, short hike, or guided hike. There is a $20 entrance fee for a day pass, or there are season passes to buy as well. Due to our packed day, we chose a two-mile trail called “Alberta Falls”. There were quite a few hikers out on the same trail that we chose. Words and pictures cannot describe how breathtaking the trail was. Snow was falling heavily and it started to pile up on trees and bridges. At the end of this particular trail, there was a very tall, large waterfall. Throughout the whole walk, you can hear the waterfall, but you don’t see it until the end. I could have sat and listened to the waterfall all day! Pictures truly do not do this park justice. I would highly recommend Estes Park and the hiking trails.

Once we came down the mountain, there was clear blue sky and the temperature rose back up in the sixties. We went back to the hotel and fixed up, then went to dinner at “The View House”. This restaurant is towards the higher end of dining. It is a two-story building- the first floor is a huge bar on one half and a banquet side on the other half.  A wedding reception had just concluded when we arrived. The second floor is what the restaurant is named for. The whole second floor is glass so you can see Denver’s views and mountains. The food was excellent and priced well. I would definitely recommend “The View House” for a nice dinner on your trip!

After dinner, we went to a bar in downtown Denver called  “Punch Bowl Social”. This place is awesome! It is a huge building with a bar, bowling, darts, a photo booth, and arcade games on the first floor. On the second floor, there is another bar with Ping-Pong, pool, and a few more arcade games. We went to a couple more bars throughout the night, but I would recommend checking out Punch Bowl!

Even after a short trip, I completely fell in love with Colorado. This is definitely the place for Carl and I!

Between a rock and a hard place

Hello readers!

Recently things haven’t gone according to plan but it has given me time to focus on some reading and getting started back up with college. Being in the military has given me tons of great opportunities and experiences but it comes with a price by the amount of rules we must abide by. I got in a little trouble for not signing out the barracks to go out into town so as a punishment I haven’t been able to leave base for almost 60 days now. It has been rough because I am a very adventurous and social person but as soon as this punishment is up I will be spending every day at a new location exploring.

A couple new books I have been reading have been “How to Master the Art of Selling” by Tom Hopkins, “Way of the Wolf” by Jordan Belfort and “#ASKGARYVEE” by Gary Vaynerchuk. Some of you may know my plans for when I get out are to be an entrepreneur in the fields of real estate and cybersecurity. These books are very well written and offer good insight on business, sales and life in general. As my mom always told me growing up “Leaders are readers” but it never struck me until I found a genre that I was interested in. I will also by starting online classes soon for a degree in cybersecurity then when I get out of the military I want to use my GI Bill to get another degree in business. I will be designing a “Drunken Wanderlust” logo soon to start an adventure clothing line so stay tuned on that!

Along with computers I built up two cryptocurrency mining rigs about a month ago. I have been following Bitcoin and a few other for years now and have always seen the potential for a currency that can be used universally. I see the biggest benefit of this in the travel industry that I could go to another country and pay for lodging, transportation and souvenirs without every having to find a currency exchange. Imagine how much easier travel would be!

Lately here at work has been busy with not much off time anyways so I guess being restricted to base isn’t that bad. Over the weekend we were barely out of the way of Typhoon Lan so all we got was a little wind and rain.

Lastly I will be looking at coming home to Tulsa, Ok at the end of December to beginning of January! Spend some quality time with my wifey, dogs and family! My wife and I are trying to plan a trip to a fun location while I am so if you have any recommendation please share!

Another EPIC week with my wife!

 

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As some of you all know my wife and I live in different countries. It’s difficult at times but it makes seeing each other that much better! In just 5 days we jammed packed our schedule. We went to two waterfalls, the aquarium, Kokusai Dori Naha, Okinawa World, and to many great restaurants! We used Airbnb to rent a small studio apartment, it was perfect for us and close to all the fun.

 

Emily arrived on a Friday and the next day was her BIRTHDAY! We spent most of the time at Kokusai Dori trying to see sights before Typhoon Noru. Kokusai Dori is translated into “International Street” which means it has a little bit of everything. Lots of cool little shops selling Okinawa items and a huge fish/meat market. We stumbled upon the market just by walking into a random door. I will have to go back and buy some fish to try because it looked delicious and fresh! That night we found small Japanese karaoke bar and celebrated her birthday with some friends! Unfortunately we were having too much fun having tequila and singing to take pictures. But the next day was another windy cloudy day so we spent most of it recovering.

Monday we had to make a stop on base to get Emily her military dependent’s ID then it was off to the 2nd largest aquarium in the world, the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium. For being a monday it was crowded and jammed packed! We looked at some of the small exhibits but we were focus on seeing the 1.9 million gallon tank with TWO whale sharks swimming in it. That was truly an experience seeing creatures that large swimming at eye level with you. There were three outdoor exhibits that we looked at with dolphins, sea turtles, and manatees. What lives below us in the ocean is amazing, some of the most colorful and interesting living creatures.

That afternoon was very interesting going to Pineapple Park… A whole park dedicated to pineapples! You go in through the park entrance and get into a self driving jeep that takes you through a tour of the fields and gardens. Once that is over you are able to walk around the park and see everything up close, they have lots of beautiful plants and decorations. The trails lead you into the area where they make pineapple wine and you even get to try some! It’s good wine to pair with a desert that had some pineapple in it. Then we discovered a whole new world of pineapples… THEY HAD PINEAPPLE EVERYTHING! I am not even kidding if you can think of it they made it with pineapples. That evening we walked to sea wall and took some awesome pictures then had the famous CiCi’s chicken and waffles.

Okinawa has quite a few waterfalls that are a must see! They take a small hike to get to but the fresh cool water and views are worth it! We left early in the morning to have breakfast and get on with the two hour drive. Unfortunately we were delayed due to being rear ended on the highway, it’s not like the United States where you just swap information and move on. Here they have to bring out the Japanese Police and since I was involved I had to call the military police. Aha Falls have a big deep swimming area with two small cliffs to jump off of. There is a small waterfall that you will see first but the big waterfall at Aha Falls is extremely dangerous to be on top of but it’s cool to look at how the rock has formed. Fukugawa Falls are nice because they are shallow and offer better relaxing areas. The waterfall itself is true natural beauty in how it flows and the nature surrounding it. On our way home we witnessed a perfect sunset and stopped to take pictures at a seawall.

Last day here we saw that Okinawa World had good reviews to go see so we decided to check it out! It was very reasonably priced for all the activities and sights you get to see. They have a snake exhibit that has snakes of every kind to include the viper on Okinawa and the deadly sea snake. They’ll even put on a show where they bring out a cobra and smack it on the back of the head. Not sure the meaning behind it but the guy had some balls to smack a deadly snake. Emily and I had been through underground caves before but I think we both can agree that this one was the largest and most interesting. Going through it seems to be never ending and every new area brings new formations of rock. They have traditional Ryukyu Island song and dance with dragon costumes. I wish I was able to take pictures/video of it but they were strict on no cameras.

(Will update last day with pictures, didn’t realize I couldn’t upload Canon RAW images)

Low light Photography

This is one of my favorite pictures taken with the GoPro Hero 5. I took this with my wife at her family lake house at Table Rock Lake in Missouri. First time really messing around with long exposures. I played around with different angles to get the campfire in the right position along with facing the dam over the lake.

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Photo taken: 12-29-2016

Storm Rollin In

I was able to capture a perfect picture of a storm rolling in from the East China Sea! Watched in on a small sea wall in Naha city. 

New camera! New adventures! 

Ordered a new DSLR camera off Amazon a bit ago but had to ship it to my wife’s apartment then she shipped it to me. It was something weird with international shipping. It’s the Canon Rebel T6i with an 18-55mm lense, it also came with a wide angle lense, macro lense and a magnification lense.

I was able to take it out yesterday and play around with a couple different locations! We were also able to go free diving/spear fishing (if we were relying on our ability to spear fish we would had starved) off the seawall. Here are a couple shots I took!

The photos below were taken with the Gopro Hero 5 Black.

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Not much to post right now. Extremely busy with Sgt course. Picture was taken at Chatan seawall. 

FIGHT NIGHT OKINAWA!

Last night was AWESOME! Some straight underground fight club type of shit. The event was put on by the MATURI Pride of Ryukyu. For ¥4000 we got great seats and ended up getting a refund due to the fighter we came to, his opponent didn’t show up so for his penalty he had to pay for our seats! The fights were in a club down in Naha that we had to go upstairs into. On the fight card there were 24 fights from some guys first fight all the way to almost pro! One United States Marine fought and Completely destroyed his opponent! For the main event the fighter brought out an Okinawan rapper that was actually really good even though I wasn’t sure what he was saying. Some fighters had signature entrances like getting slapped before getting it the ring, throwing their warm up jacket into the crowd but my favorite was the guy who rode a bicycle down the catwalk then got into the ring. It was a pimped out bicycle. The venue was nice with local food and a bar, also the turnout was great! I’m guessing about 200-300 people showed up. I took video of most of the fights and will be uploading the good ones and when I get the time I will make a highlight video of all the fights. After the fights I got in touch with the promoter about getting set up to fight at their next one November 12th. Hopefully not too hung over from my birthday on the 11th and the Marine Corps birthday on the 10th.

 

Big things happening!

Goodevening!

All photos are originals and posted at the bottom of the this post.

So some exciting new first is I was able to buy a van here in Okinawa. The process for military is a little different due to being in a foreign country and having United States and Japan agreements. I was approved for a license and a couple days later I bought a Nissan Elgrand for $500! Now I will be able to do the adventures I have been wanting to do more easily. I am excited to share them with you as they come about. My goal is one new adventure/post a week now.

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Secondly I bought a set of snorkeling gear that came with a wetsuit, felt bottom boots, fins, gloves, snorkel, and a mask. I went with mid-level gear due to starting a dive certification course after I get back from some training in July. the wetsuit, boots, and gloves are AROPEC brand and the fins are MARES brand. The day I bought all of it we decided to go test it all out at the kind of hidden spot called Mermaid Grotto here in Okinawa. It’s about 35 minutes North of Futenma. Getting there was easy but the entrance to the water/beach area doesn’t look like much, mostly a trail cut through the thick brush but once you get into the actual area it’s absolutely beautiful! Clear waters, giant rock formations, and tons of coral with crevasses in it. Starting off getting to the water there were sea urchins everywhere so luckily I bought those good felt bottom boots! Once getting out into the deeper water it was filled with colorful fish and blue starfish. At first I wasn’t sure how I would like diving but now that I had a little taste of it I want to go back and explore the cravasses with an air tank on. I am definitely going to check out a few other spots that I have been researching. It is like looking into another world that not many people take the time to see.

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