Travel

Israel/Istanbul

Israel/Istanbul

Keeping it brief since it’s either a picture of food, Dan or a building (or in one case, a building called the Dan) - we finally left Tel Aviv for a day trip to Jerusalem where you guessed it, we ate and I took pictures of Dans. Not willing to go all the way through Istanbul without stopping for a meal (or three), we (I) purposely booked a 7 hour layover for snacking. Don’t you want to be my travel buddy? Whenever I go somewhere I really like I get an almost panic that I don’t know when / if I’ll get to go back and see / eat things again. Hopefully 2019 will be a year of eating new and familiar delicious snacks around the world.

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Tyler and Al - New Jersey Wedding

Tyler and Al - New Jersey Wedding

It seems a little crazy to say that I'd never been to New Jersey, but the trip for Tyler and Al's wedding had great people and delicious strip mall bagels for cheap so I don't see what's not to love! :)  I may be partly joking about the bagels (but not really) but I'm definitely not joking about Tyler and Al and their friends and family making this a fantastic wedding.  Between the church cat (John, naturally), misty rain, and two people filled with love and joy, you can't go wrong.

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Istanbul

Istanbul

The stuff that really made Istanbul great for me was the stuff I didn't know about until I got there.  And that's on top of everything I knew that made me really really want to go there.   But the bal kaymak, the ferries, the fresh fruits, the tiny winding streets.  Those are the things that I'm still thinking about months later. 

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Amelia and Max - San Francisco and Yosemite Elopement

Amelia and Max - San Francisco and Yosemite Elopement

After every wedding I get to be a part of, I am struck by how amazing it is that I have been let in to such an intimate and special day in peoples' lives.  It's a level of giddyness I'll never get over and gratitude that, despite my best efforts, I never feel that I've properly conveyed to the people who invited me to be there.  

These feelings get magnified times a million when your friends let you be the only person to witness their elopement.  Then times a bajillion that they chose San Francisco and Yosemite as the backdrop.  And they let you make stops for hotdogs and keychains at the national park gift shop?  Pretty unparalleled coolness.

After their ceremony at city hall, we explored the sutro baths before road tripping out to Far Meadow.  In an epically twisty and barf-inducing (but totally worth it) drive, you are rewarded with a cabin and two a-frames set on a mountain meadow.  Getting ready for the wedding consisted of a quick round of Boggle, a complete breakfast, and heading to the car for the drive to Yosemite.  We came across a secluded part of the Merced river, perfect for a private exchange of vows, and then wound our way up to Glacier Point for a hike for views out over the whole valley.  A perfect, whistle-stop NorCal tour.  

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Bree and Peter - Mexico destination wedding photography

Bree and Peter - Mexico destination wedding photography

Anyone planning a destination wedding?  Can I invite myself?  Bree and Peter and their friends and family met up at the El Dorado Royale for a long weekend of Mexican sun, sea and drinks served in hollowed out pineapples (!!!).  Even if pineapple drinks aren't on the table, this is probably the way to do it.  Everyone has already had a bit of vacation and a few drinks/swims by the time the wedding comes around so there are very few nerves or possible frustrations. The result?  You get a laid-back, tropical, pool-jumping party.

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Provence

Provence

Provence isn't really one of those destinations that you need to convince people is beautiful and worth visiting, so I'll spare you all that and fill you in on some fun things we did and answer some of my own questions I had before leaving.  There are lots of things I just couldn't find out about - a combination of me trying to over-prepare in case my french failed us (a very likely scenario!) and a lack of websites and information online (so french). 

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Vieques

Vieques

Vieques. A place you have either never heard of or one you are eagerly planning to return to. The perfect destination for one of my favorite types of travel.  The kind where you drive aimlessly and stop and explore.  In this case, beaches with no one else there, narrow jungle roads, and small towns.  It is not the ideal vacation location for people who need to be entertained.  But if sunrises, jungles, surprisingly great food, and an occasional (ok, one) termite swarm are your thing, then you'll be in heaven.

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Nashville

With a good chunk of the day before Elina and Dan's rehearsal dinner, it was time to hit the ground running once we landed in Nashville - or rather, start shoveling hot chicken into our faces.  It went:  coffee, hot chicken, ice cream, flower truck, repeat foods.  Which, if this needs clarification, is my ultimate trip pattern.

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