A Travellerspoint blog

Rockin in the USA!!

sunny 28 °C

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Hi to all from the United States! We have now been in Michigan for almost 2 weeks and we are enjoying our time here with family and friends. We were met at Detroit’s airport by Rachel’s parents and brother who were very happy to see us! We then headed towards Joe’s Crab Shack for lunch, welcome back to the land of unlimited service and free drink refills!
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The next day or two was spent unpacking and settling in. Needless to say, shopping has also been on the agenda with lots of clothes bargains to be had! We have also been helping Art and Sherry with their new office building; they own and operate a door and window business. They are yet to move in as tasks like painting, landscaping, plumbing, plastering and new carpet all remain. We helped to create (using a Bobcat) a lovely bed of plants along the shop front adding color and foliage texture for all to see.
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It was great to attend Agape Christian Church again. People there are always so warm and friendly. Sometimes we can take church for granted but often we don’t realize what we have until it’s not there. In our case, we hadn’t been to church for 6 weeks because of our travels. It’s true we can worship the Lord anywhere and at anytime but it’s also vital to be part of a church family.
We have also been enjoying the outdoors and the summer is starting to warm up. Water skiing and tubing on the lake have added to the fun! I seem to have the knack to pop up while skiing and stay up on the water; I think it’s from balancing on rollerblades, whatever the case, water skiing rocks!

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One thing I always enjoy about travelling to other places is the animals. In Australia, we don’t have things like squirrels, chipmunks, raccoons or skunks all of which are common around here. Somehow, one of these little friends (a chipmunk) got inside the house. How did we know, well the sunflower seeds spilled all over the kitchen floor kind of gave it away! Also we saw the little guy do the bolt and run under the oven in the kitchen. Rachel, Marc and I formed a plan to herd this furry critter out the front door. Marc would block one side of the kitchen while I would block the other with the only other exit being the open front door. Rachel would get the broom and put it behind the oven. It was perfectly executed apart from the chipmunk running straight between my legs before I could blink an eyelid! He is still on the loose somewhere in the laundry room! Stayed tuned for more adventures in our quest to find the missing chipmunk!
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Yesterday, we went to Shipshewana markets in Indiana. Shipshewana is an Amish community so it was fascinating to see the people riding horse and buggies and wearing their traditional clothing. They certainly have a fashion all of their own! We enjoyed shopping for home grown produce and sampling all kinds of delicious homemade foods.
Rachel’s older brother Matt is arriving today so it will be good to see him again. Other things we still plan to do here include going to Cedar Point amusement park, hot-air ballooning, fishing on Lake Michigan, camping in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula and catching up with more friends.

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Thanks for reading! Until next time God bless you in your part of His globe!

Posted by InHisHands 15:21 Archived in USA Tagged round_the_world Comments (0)

Coming in from Switzerland

overcast 22 °C

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Greetings Everybody,
Sorry it has been a while since we have posted any text but better late than never!
So abit about Dubai; whilst this city is amazing to see, everything seems to be still under construction. The worlds tallest tower, the Burj, will be completed in September 09 but it was still a striking image against the horizon. The weather is scorching there in the summer hence the bus stops are air-conditioned! The shopping malls are huge and the world's only 7 star hotel was nice from the outside...we didnt go inside since the $200AU entry fee kind of deterred us! Dubai is not the capital of the United Arab Emirates but it is the most populous city with over a million inhabitants, 80% of those being foreigners. From Dubai we took an Emirates flight to Rome. I highly recommend flying Emirates as the service and entertainment are second to none.
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Next our 15 day tour around Italy was fantastic. It was also tiring! We visited most of the famous places and enjoyed making new friends with our fellow tourists. For us, the highlights were Venice, San Marino and Sorrento. Rachel & I had a twilight dinner right on the waters edge in Venice, watching all the gondalas and boats. In San Marino we did a night walk with our friends up to their three different castles. And in Sorrento we went shopping and enjoyed a drink on one of the steep cliffs overlooking the coast line. Other adventures in Italy included enjoying Italian pizza, pasta and gelato, wine tasting in a Tuscan vineyard, seeing the leaning tower of Pisa, visiting Florence and going into the Sistene chapel and the Colesseum. Italians are very expressive so that was also entertaining!

After Italy, we journeyed onto Amsterdam where we were met by my grandparents who live in Holland. We spent 3 days in the Nederlands before travelling with my grandparents by car through Germany (also staying there for 3 days) to reach Switzerland. One of the days in Holland we wandered around Amsterdam dodging bicycles! Then our first stop in Germany was in Boppard right on the Rhine River. Our second stop was in Weinheim near Heidlberg, where we enjoyed one morning swimming at the local waterpark. The Germans love to drive, and fast!! We reached speeds of up to 190kms on the Autobahn, kind of scary!
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And now we are staying right in the Swiss Alps. My grandparents have a 3 storey chalet in the Lochental valley, which is known as the "Valley of the Vallies" because it is one of the most beautiful in the country. We are enjoying the fresh air, the snow covered peaks all around us and the sound of the rushing river outside our window. Its just unspoilt here, words can't really describe how magnificent this landscape really is. We hiked almost the entire length of the valley (nearly 20kms, half of which is very steep!) right up to the glacier at the end of the valley. Cows with large loud bells graze high in the mountains adding to the delight. The restaraunt right near the glacier was very new since two years ago, the old one was wiped out by an avalanche. The local people's diet of a lot of swiss cheese and bread tastes delicious and the chocolate isn't bad either!
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Soon we are moving onto Michigan. Rachel is very excited to be seeing her family and friends soon! We have many fun and exciting things planned while we are there like camping, hiking, fishing and water skiing! We are in the States for 7 weeks then onto Fiji and finally Australia again. It has been a colossal journey so thanks for being a part of it!

Till next time from the States....

Posted by InHisHands 00:31 Archived in Switzerland Tagged round_the_world Comments (1)

Sweet Italy, Land of Beauty

sunny 30 °C

This was the trip we have taken through Italy, and soon we will update you on how our adventures were in this beauitful country.... Enjoy the pictures in our photo gallery for now!
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Dwaine and I enjoyed wine tasting in Tuscany
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We met Kristen and Katie on our tour and they are from SW Michigan!!!
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Dwaine is capturing a unique view of the leaning tower of Pisa
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The Tuscan Countryside is Beautiful

Posted by InHisHands 09:12 Archived in Italy Tagged bus Comments (0)

Welcome to Dubai....

sunny 39 °C

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This is the World's Tallest Building that is to be completed Sept 9th, 2009...the Burj Dubai standing at 830 meters high
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Dwaine and I soaking up the views of the world's only 7 Star Hotel, boy was it hot outside that day!
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There were many Mosques that we saw in Dubai and Malaysia

Posted by InHisHands 09:10 Archived in United Arab Emirates Comments (1)

Exploring Thailand too!

overcast 31 °C

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Hello Friends and Family....

Here we are back in Kuala Lumpur after an interesting jaunt to Thailand this week. There are many stories we could share of our adventures… We flew from KL to Phuket which sounds normal until we hit a storm! We were forced to stay in a holding pattern as it was too fierce to land. Then came our turn, the pilot informed us that he was going to attempt making an approach. After many bumps and white knuckles and a lot of prayers, we landed safely! Everyone on the plane applauded and we were not the only relieved ones to be stepping off!
We stayed at Patong beach, welcome to tourist Mecca! After walking the streets and getting our bearings we arranged our elephant trek and FantaSea tickets for the next day.
Our “jungle safari” was quite a good time as we rode elephants, took an ox-cart ride, saw how they tap rubber trees, took a picture on a water buffalo, and then had an elephant and monkey show to watch. The elephant show was our favorite as Dwaine and I quickly became volunteers to the fun. Dwaine had to be goal keeper as the elephant kicked the soccer ball, needless to say the Aussies won! And then I participated in elephant massage where a baby elephant pat on my back with his foot and then kissed my arm with his trunk. One of the funniest parts was the searching for the bananas that the elephant had to find up Dwaine’s shorts! It was really quite hilarious. Later that day we went to the show that everyone said was a must see and like a Las Vegas production. The FantaSea show was very colorful, had lots of different acts including magic, more real elephants and overhead acrobatics. It was quite a nice way also to learn a lot about Thai culture and dancing.
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Beyond this the Thai food is just sensational and for very little money we enjoyed green curries and Pad Thai noodles. We spent the rest of the time walking the streets (and being haggled to take a taxi or have a look in a shop every time we blinked). I was a bit concerned about the weather since it rained heavily several times the first day we were there. And even though the forecast was for rain the other two days we were there, the weather was quite nice with only a few raindrops. We enjoyed the hotel’s pool and good buffet breakfast in the morning, plus we had a great view from our 11th story room.
Yesterday we flew back to Kuala Lumpur with no problems whatsoever. Now we have 6 days left here before we head off to Dubai for our next adventure. There is a few things left that we would like to do in Kuala Lumpur, like get Dwaine’s hair cut since it is getting quite long (speaking of this I recently got my hair cut here as well for only $3 AUD! And it looks quite nice). However, we also just had an opportunity for us to go to another city about 40mins away from here to teach some English to some Mongolian students. We are heading there tonight for a few days, so we will see how that goes and what happens. Overall, we are looking forward to continuing on our journey even though we have been having a pretty good time along the way. Thanks again for all your prayers and we will keep you posted as things go on! Take care and God bless…
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Posted by InHisHands 19:16 Archived in Thailand Tagged round_the_world Comments (0)

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