Happy New Year to Our Friends in the Blogging World!

Fireworks from Burning Man to welcome in the New Year.

Fireworks from Burning Man 2015 to welcome in the New Year.This is a side view of the Man just before he burns.

It’s that time of year when our lives are balanced on the edge of looking back and forward. I don’t do New Year’s resolutions so much as I look backward to see where I have been and forward to see where I am going. The two are obviously closely connected. Normally we continue down the same path; it is a deep rut we have created. But occasionally something knocks us off the beaten track, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Doors close; doors open. I try to live a life of no regrets, or at least as few as possible— life is precious. When I die, I want the last words on my lips to be, “Wow! What a trip,” not “Damn, I wish I would have…”

As bloggers, our lives are more open than most. We share the journeys we are on, both inward and outward— and you have shared much with me in 2015. I’ve been privileged to help raise goats in Virginia, romp with Milo in Australia, worry about a lost cat in England, and wander back in time to World War II. I’ve travelled to the world’s capitals and the remote corners of Africa, Europe, Asia, South America, North America, Australia and New Zealand with both old and new blogging friends. (Over a year qualifies as “old” in the blogging world.)

You’ve allowed me to see the world through your eyes in Nigeria, Knoxville, Southeast Texas, northern Oregon, and ever so many other places. I’ve stood beside you as you have fought Ebola in West Africa, hiked in Patagonia, travelled down the Nile by boat, snorkeled in Iceland and built houses in Nepal. Many of you are superb writers; you’ve shared your poetry and stories and causes as well as your adventures. And many of you are excellent photographers, sharing your life in pictures as well as words.

Thank you.

In return, I’ve taken you backpacking into the Grand Canyon, shared the craziness and beauty of Burning Man, and invited you into my home in southern Oregon. Peggy took you along on her exploration of the Cotswold in England, and I took you up the North Coast of California where we explored subjects ranging from the Grateful Dead to the world of tattooing. I suspect you recall my confrontations with the Nike Missile north of San Francisco. Iggy the Iguana wandered into our living room and onto my blog in Puerto Vallarta. And there were many more adventures. It was all fun for me. I was particularly excited and pleased to share the publishing of my book, The Bush Devil Ate Sam, about my experiences as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Liberia.

Of the many visitors to our home I blog about is the deer herd that lives in our backyard and has become quite fond of apples.

Of the many visitors to our home I blog about is the deer herd that lives in our backyard and has become quite fond of apples.

We travelled from the Bell Tower in Sedona...

We travelled from the beautiful red rock country of Sedona…

To this bower of trees at Point Reyes national Seashore.

To this bower of trees at Point Reyes National Seashore.

Peggy took you on a trip to England that included Gloucester Cathedral hallway that was hues in Harry Potter.

Peggy took you on a trip to England that included a Gloucester Cathedral hallway that was used in Harry Potter.

While I took you to the Potter School in Bodega CA that was used in Alfred Hitchcock's film, The Birds.

While I took you to the Potter School in Bodega, CA that was used in Alfred Hitchcock’s film, The Birds.

Senor Iggy the iguana came to visit us when we were in Puerto Vallarta.

Senor Iggy the iguana came to visit us when we were in Puerto Vallarta.

Altogether, according to WordPress, my posts had 94,000 views from 170 countries in 2015— not monumental in the world of blogging, but definitely enough to please this wanderer.

Here’s what’s on tap for 2016:

  • In January and February I will be blogging about Burning Man 2015 with added thoughts on Burning Man 2016
  • At the end of February, Peggy and I will be travelling to Alaska to see the kick-off of the Iditarod Sled Dog Race in Anchorage, and the World Ice Art Championships in Fairbanks, both of which I will blog about.
  • From mid-March through May, Peggy and I will make a 10,000-mile road trip around the US and Eastern Canada, retracing the route of my 1989 solo, six-month bicycle trek. I’ll be blogging about both the bike trip and the road trip as we travel.
  • From mid-July to mid-August I will be doing a 250-mile backpack trek from Kennedy Meadows to Mt. Whitney in the Sierra Nevada Mountains following the Pacific Crest Trail and the John Muir Trail. While I am out, I will be running blogs on past outdoor/wilderness treks. When I get back, I will do a series on the actual Trek. (I’ve done the trip several times, but at 73? Hmmm. Guess we’ll see.)
  • Late August should see us back at Burning Man. After that, who knows?

Here’s wishing each of you a happy and healthy New Year.

Curt and Peggy

NEXT BLOG: We will head off to Burning Man 2015 as promised.

47 comments on “Happy New Year to Our Friends in the Blogging World!

  1. I was impressed with your 2015 memories…but then doubly impressed with your 2016 plans. That seems like a jam-packed year of adventures and I am so looking forward to all your musings and discoveries and a few more of Peggy’s smiles in some of the photos (doesn’t she have the greatest smile?). It really has been a good year for bloggers, and I like the way you summarized it. You’ve inspired me to write something similar, and now that house guests have eaten breakfast, I feel like I can sneak away for a little while and work on a New Year’s post. Here’s to another year of participating in this rewarding Word Press community.

    • Yes, here’s to another year Crystal. There is so much out there to explore and discover. And share. That to me has been the beauty of blogging. Where else could we find a whole world of friends having great adventures. I still picture you taking off into the wilderness on your own and I smile. I suspect by now you have slipped off and written your blog. I look forward to reading it. –Curt (And Peggy does have a beautiful smile.)

  2. Look forward to more journeys and adventures. It allows us an insight in a world still full of surprises and wonder. Have a good year,Curt.
    By this time next year I should have a ‘real book’ in print. That’s what blogging does to you. But, the recklessness of putting words down has to finally be put to the test.

    • I will be looking forward to reading your book, Gerard. I am convinced that it is a sheer act of courage, having been through the process and now starting over again. But blogging makes a difference. Just the discipline of constantly putting up blogs is a great help. (Not to mention the writing practice.) The very best of luck with the book. It’s a hell of an adventure. –Curt

  3. What a year you two have had! And 2016 looks to be shaping up to be another doozy – in a good way! You’re gonna walk 250 miles in a month?! That’s impressive. Jan 6th we’re off to San Miguel de Allende for five months to write a book or two. Also during that time I hope to get the blog “up-to-date” with stories of our travels in Turkey, Jordan and Egypt. Apart from the busyness of the season I’m currently stumped on where to actually start writing about Istanbul! After that we’re not sure yet. It’s been wonderful following along with you in 2015, and I look forward to more stories in the new year.
    Alison

    • Five months in one place? You two? Hard to believe. 🙂 The book challenge is a big one, however. It is really hard to do when you are constantly traveling. I assume you will be adapting your blogs, which is a giant step forward.

      My goal this spring, summer and fall is to do as much as I can to blog my next book, which will be on the bike trek/road trip and my backpacking adventures. Bits and pieces are written and this year’s adventures will bring them up-to-date. I started the project many years ago camping in our van for a month in the small town of Mulege in Baja on the Gulf of California. Talk about an idyllic existence. Anyway, good luck with the book! –Curt

      • Thanks Curt, and good luck to you too. I think parts of the blog will be in the book, but there’s a lot of the story that was never really told on the blog, pages of notes we made leading to our decision to give-up having a home and the four months it took to be free of it. PLUS, I’m being encouraged to write a book about my life before I met Don. Like you my life has been far from conventional, and there’s so many stories to tell.
        I’m looking forward to more of your back packing stories!

      • Here’s to unconventional lives, Alison! Yours should make quite a story. I have two or three more books I am interested in writing. If a am still putting along then, I may try my hand at fiction. 🙂 Why not. –Curt

  4. Sounds like another adventurous year of traveling ahead for you, this year, Curt. It will be fun to read about them in the future. Take care Cousin, and have a happy, healthy, new year!

  5. I have enjoyed journeying with you and recognized most of the photos you shared.
    2016 seems pretty busy and you’re going to treat us to more adventures, yay!
    Godspeed to you and Peggy. Happy New Year. 🙂

    • Hope so Susan. I am excited about both adventures. My goal is to blog my next book between the two. I am always up for a road trip and it has been too long since I’ve done a long backpack trip. –Curt

  6. Curt and Peggy, what wonderful plans you have for the year ahead! Should your travels through Eastern Canada take you to our region, we have a room ready for you:) Happy New Year! Ginette and Gord

  7. Yes, you have put into words something I have been unable to define about the blogging community, this simple world-wide friendship that enables us to see and taste and understand communities and events that we may never attend ourselves. It is good, pleasurable and so well worth while. I look forward to your and Peggy’s travels this year, go safely and send me/us pictures!

    • Sounds like you said it very well to me, Hilary. I started blogging because the writing community said I needed a platform. It amused me (and amazed me somewhat), how fast that ‘platform’ became friends with great stories to share, and how blogging became an end in itself. Thanks. –Curt

  8. Curt and Peggy, we can’t tell you how much we’ve loved wandering with you this year, both at home and abroad. Your amazing energy, beautiful photos, and excellent words never fail to amaze and entertain. And when I read your plans for 2016 my jaw dropped. Looks like it’s stacking up to be another banner year for you. Thanks also for all your support and being one of our top commenters this year. We wish you all the very best in 2016. ~Terri & James

  9. You know how much I’ve enjoyed your posts over the years, Curt — and Peggy’s contributions, too.. One of my casual goals for the year is to learn something new (to me) each day. You’re certainly going to help with the achievement of that goal!

    • Thanks Linda, and believe me, it’s mutual. Like you (although not in the same depth), I always try to add information that I think my followers might be interested in, or at least that I find interesting. 🙂 –Curt

  10. Curt and Peggy, we can’t tell you how much we’ve loved wandering with you this year, both at home and abroad. Your amazing energy, beautiful photos, and excellent words never fail to amaze and entertain. And when I read your plans for 2016 my jaw dropped. Looks like it’s stacking up to be another banner year for you. Thanks also for all your support and being one of our top commenters this year. We wish you all the very best in 2016. ~Terri & James

    • Thanks Terri and James. Your words mean a lot since the two of you are among my very favorite travel bloggers. I am very excited about this year. The maps and atlases are out and I am drawing lines! –Curt

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