Tuesday, April 21, 2009


here's the latest photo i received from steve. this was taken while he was visiting some villages in tamil nadu, the southern most state in india.

Saturday, April 18, 2009


yes, our fate has forever changed... indicated by these two little strips. positive they say, positive. :) yep, we're having a baby! a little creature has overtaken my body and will emerge around November 1, 2009. So, what does this do to your adventures, you may ask? Well, we found out right before we left. So we did some frantic visits to the doctors and decided it was still a go. While in India, actually just a couple of days ago, we decided the risks of me getting malaria were too great, so I'm back in the states. I'm actually here in New York City for a bit, visiting my great friend Lindsay. I'll be back in Utah sometime soon. Steve's still in India and will keep taking pictures and working for a while. I have no idea what I'll be doing for the next few months. I'm open to suggestions!

Anyway, enjoy our good news! I'll post my thoughts on international travel and pregnancy (aka how to survive an overnight bus ride in India with morning sickness) in a future post.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

another post

April 9, 2009

Yesterday we headed northeast to a nearby city called Warangal, with our friends, Heather and Spence and our kickin hosts, Vijaya (sister in law), Chaitanya (brother in law) and Revi (Vijaya's brother). We hopped on a train for about 2 hours. After arriving in Warangal we got a taxi that could hold us all (some weird sort of Chevy SUV with sideways seats in the back). We then headed up to these old Hindu temple ruins about an hour away. They were hidden up in some hills next to a big lake. The ruins dated back to around 1200 AD. They're somewhat falling apart, but not seemingly from age, but perhaps a mild earthquake or something. Don't worry, there are a few priests and pilgrims that maintain some life at the ruins. Unfortunately, though, no one seems concerned with keeping the ruins free from graffiti, as it seems like e ery visitor feels the need to inscribe their name somewhere on these 800 year old relics.

We then went to another temple, much better maintained, that is bigger and older than the others, it was from around 1100 AD. The highlight for me was the tribe of monkeys that lived off of the mango trees surrounding the area. I dig how monkeys are so much like us, but different.

Then off to a fort, but when we got there they were charging a ton to see the ruins that you could already see from the road, so we decided to pass on that. We then went to some awesome rocks up on a hill. Somewhat like slickrock down in Moab, but more granite like rock. Anyway, we explored those for an hour or so, then headed out to one more temple. This one was called the Temple of a Thousand Pillars. It was even older than the others, build around 1000 AD. And still operational, with a Brahma priest sitting inside making offerings for visitors.

It was at this temple that Spence became an international star. There was a huge group of guys, all dressed in orange (which means they're like fasting or something like that) and they all wanted to take pictures of Spence (being 6 foot 5 or whatever he is). It happens everywhere we go, but there it was awesome... it really was like he was a celebrity.

Ok, for photos, check out the updates on Steve's photo blog at here. I'll try to post some soon.

Ok, we are alive.

Here are some things I wrote when we first got here.

March 29, 2009. 6am in Mumbai. I'm listening to new birds squawk outside in the quietness. it's still dark out.

I wonder about a lot of things...are the mosquitoes in our room malaria infected; does India have a religious day of the week; how long will it take me to adjust to the time change; will the 4 of us remain friends throughout all our adventures; what is that bird that sounds kinda like a pack of coyotes; what will today bring; will we ever learn all the ins and outs of travel, like tipping, etc?

I'm very excited for this adventure. We already started some of the fun that will be ours for the next year, like washing our clothes in the shower, power outages and lost luggage. I'm curious to see Mumbai in the daylight. Driving in I recognized those unforgetable smells of a big city and open markets. You know, the smell that is like dead fish and drying meat on top of old fruit and sewage. But, I must be growing up, it didn't make me gag like it did when I was a kid.

Getting here was an adventure, too. I've never flown stand-by before. After rushing to try to make a midnight flight in Salt Lake, only then to sleep on the floor, freezing, hoping to get on the 7 am flight, although not really daring to hope. Miracles happen, though, so we got on that flight and then waiting in Atlanta. Steve, Spencer and I made it on Thursday afternoon, but Heather got stuck in Salt Lake too long, so she didn't get to Atlanta until after the Mumbai flight. So, we hung out in the airport all night, trying to sleep as the janitors vacummed around us. We had all day in Atlanta and wanted to explore, but all the sites we wanted to see were either too expensive (read $26 per person for the aquarium) or outside (ready raining buckets all day, so much that our luggage was still wet when we got it in India). So, we kept ourselves entertained by people watching, a worthy hobby in any airport. We got on the flight to Mumbai at 8 am and were lucky enough to fly business class (read super swanky). The free movies and 5 course meals didn't even compare to the wonder of being able to lie down and sleep for 11 hours straight.

And so here I am, plinking away on my iphone (now ipod) in the dark, while the others are catching up on sleep. Listening to the birds squawking outside.

March 29. Writing from a bus heading from Mumbai to Hyderabad. We tried to get a train, but they were all booked. So we're on the overnight bus instead.

Highlights so far:
The horn on the bus sounds like a really loud clown trick horn. And we get to hear it about every 60 seconds, give or take.
The really loud Bollywood movie playing, that has all the drama of a Mexican soap opera, but with the singing and dancing of Rogers and Hammerstein. And the only parts in English are exclamations of fear, love or sassiness.
Spencer is pinned in his seat and can't move when the people in front put their seat back.

Only 8 more hours.