Lick Observatory, and Our New Home

Today we drove up Mt. Hamilton to Lick Observatory, which was incredibly cool. There are around 10 telescopes at the top of the mountain, the largest of which is a 120-inch reflecting telescope. They have a bunch of summer programs and concerts and such at the observatory, which Adrienne and I will definitely attend.

After visiting the telescope, we drove over the Diablo Range mountains out to Interstate 5 and back home through Gilroy. Through the Diablo Range there are some incredible hills and rocks and valleys. There were quite a few places for sale, and Adrienne and I spotted one that was 314 acres for $444,000 … amazing. (No, we didn’t really buy it… yet, mwaahaha!)

I am not a Checklist Tourist

It seems like India’s entire tourism business is aimed towards what I’ll call “checklist tourists” — people that go places and are only interested in “seeing” the place and taking one picture to prove they were there. I am not one of those people.

When I visit a place, I want to feel the place, to explore it at my own pace, to see the locals and their customs. I want to take pictures of the soul of the place. Whether that’s random pictures of monkeys, macros of flowers, pictures of a road… it doesn’t matter. I am not that interested in taking the same picture you can buy on a two cent postcard. I want to be original.

Normally when I go to a country, I try not to look like a tourist. I try to blend in, to feel the culture, to be part of the culture. It’s (obviously) a bit harder in India than in Europe, but I try anyway. India’s tourism business is tailored towards pushing as many Americans as possible through the checklist. “Come here, see this.”, “Come come..”, they are always rushing you, always leading you, not going with you. That is not my style.

I am not a checklist tourist.

Big Sur

Yesterday, Adrienne and I drove down to Monterey and took Highway 1 through Big Sur, down to San Simeon. Around San Simeon, we stopped at a Vista Point where there happened to be a large seal observation area, which was quite cool. In total, the day’s driving was around 350 miles, but quite worth it!

I posted plenty of new pictures in my gallery: Big Sur and Seals.