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Winston's Travel Updates in the Southwest USA

Post your trip reports, travel experiences, and updates abroad. Or your expat story if you already live overseas. Note: To post photos and images, insert the image URL between the tags [img]and[/img] after uploading them to a third party site.

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Postby Winston » Sat Aug 24, 2013 4:39 pm

xiongmao wrote:I think you should get out and travel more. Stop writing those 7 reasons why X is better than Y.

Come to Thailand and experience this rather wonderous place. This week I've been on two dates, had a money crisis, met Rock, been in a ladyboy bar, ate an incredible Middle Eastern potato snack, got soaking wet in Thunderstorms two days running, seen a cat asleep on an escalator, met an old friend from Gz, met 5 other farangs and 2 adorable mixed kids, seen Bangkok's street market turned into pop-up bar street, ate some rather good shui jiao (or are they pronounced shui jiao?), had a great haircut from a MILF and bartered for some rubber Geckos.

One of the most surreal moments I have this year is of checking my email in a wild Pattaya gogo bar* and seeing your 7 Reasons Why Americans Seem To Have No Soul. Kind of funny that you're writing this stuff and I'm drinking beer and waving to cute girl #17.

*to see if their free wifi claim was true.


Hey now, first of all, like I said, you can't appreciate the light without experiencing the darkness first.

Second, that essay was a masterpiece and helped people make sense of their feelings of isolation in America. You can enjoy your life, but you won't be helping others unless you contribute something or share something.

Btw, I just went out with a hot Ukrainian girl here in Vegas. :P

Is that your site?

http://www.happierbackhome.com

Wtf? If you are happier back home, wouldn't you be in the UK?
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

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"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby Winston » Mon Sep 09, 2013 5:58 pm

Hi all,
I gotta get out of Vegas soon. It is too hot and dry here, which gives me headaches, so it's not even comfortable to go out much. The weather here is terrible, not comfortable or pleasant at all. And it's no fun going out alone here without female company. The people are also fake and unfriendly, and the vibe of the environment feels toxic, depressed and degenerate. The women here all have this bitchy spoiled rotten mean hateful look on their faces, which is unnatural and disgusting. Overall, Vegas is not a good place to be for too long. I'm so sick of it.

Thus there's really no reason to go out here if you've already seen the main attractions. But the consequence is that me staying at home everyday isn't healthy. When you sit all day and eat, in a sedentary lifestyle, you gain weight and feel depressed, cause your body is not active. The less energy you use, the less energy you have, and vice versa. If you sit for too long, you can't help but feel depressed and low energy for some reason.

So I really need to start traveling and going somewhere else. I didn't come to the US to stay home and work on the computer, so I'm tired of wasting precious time here, especially since I should be abroad. I came here to enjoy the spectacular nature again that the US does offer. If I left the country and didn't enjoy that, I'd regret it as another wasted opportunity.

So here's my plan: I am preparing for a road trip to Utah (one of the nicest states I've ever been to) followed by the rest of Nevada and then California to see my hometown in the Bay Area.

If any of you want to do a meetup in California, I will try to come. I have not planned to come to Southern Cal, but if you all want to do a meetup there, I'd be willing to detour down there. Does anyone have a guestroom I can stay at there?

I definitely am going to the Bay Area though, so if you are there, we can do a meetup or something. I miss riding BART to San Francisco, and the perfect weather there.

I am leaving soon, probably tomorrow, so I will check in from time to time to see if any meetups are arranged.

Btw, east of Southern Cal on the map are Joshua Tree and Kings Canyon. Are those worth visiting?
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby xiongmao » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:33 pm

When I was a kid I used to collect cactus plants. I dreamed of going to the US desert and seeing them in the wild. Still not achieved that - it remains on my bucket list. Oh god, take some photos for me!!!

Why don't you come and visit Thailand? If you've never been to Bangkok then you'll be dazzled, like I was. It's more modern than I expected. The P4P is fun and there if you want it. The dating is great, and the food is exceptional. There are also interesting things to discover, like the massive great lizards in the parks and the crappy street markets that turn into crappy bars after midnight.

Pattaya is also worth a look. A whole city built on hooking and bars? How can that not fail to impress?

Also it's very cheap to live here for a while and I have now figured out which buses are free yes, free!

I can't believe you haven't been here before!

I don't know what else rocks your boat, but 40% of the women I've dated have worn teeth braces :) If you book the next flight out then we'll know you're a fan of braces!!!
In February 2013 I quit my boring job and now I'm Happier Abroad...
Do YOU want to date beautiful foreign women? Find out which country's women are best for you, and which dating site to look for them on!
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Postby Winston » Fri Nov 15, 2013 1:36 am

Hi all,
I'M IN UTAH NOW! It was so hard to get out of Vegas for some reason! I wanted to leave in September, but my mind keeps making excuses and I get complacent and then time goes by so fast. I don't know why. Does Vegas have psychic tentacles that try to keep you there? Or is my higher self telling me that I can only go when it lets me, lest something bad happen? Or do I have demons in my mind that try to counter everything I want to do?

I'm so glad I finally got out of Vegas after 90 failed attempts. I thought I'd never leave! Every time I tried to leave, something would get in the way, either external or internal! It was so f***ing crazy. I felt like I was trapped on Gilligan's Island and that there was some curse in the script that would not let me leave, just like in that TV show! Everyday I yelled "COME ON! COME ON! COME ON!" endlessly!

It's just so weird that it took me three months to get out of Vegas from the time I was prepared to leave. So weird. Why is everything always backed up in my life? I'M SO f***ing ANGRY BEYOND WORDS!!!!!!!!!!!! Why is it so f***ing hard to control my life? Why?!

Anyway, I'm going to one of my favorite national parks in Utah. It sucks that it's so cold now. I can't enjoy it like I could have in Summer or Fall. I'm so pissed.

It's nice to experience fresh air, good scenery, greenery, mountains, grass and trees again. Vegas sucks in that not only does it have a bad negative toxic vibe, but it has no nature or greenery to compensate for it! For example, Seattle has an unfriendly negative vibe too, but it has lots of nature and greenery to make up for it. But Vegas doesn't! All it has are bad roads, too many cars, bad traffic, bad drivers, shitty toxic vibe, and commercial buildings everywhere. The air is dusty and dry too.

What's stupid is that in all the local public TV stations in Vegas, everyone on there is always saying that Vegas is a wonderful place with wonderful people, even though everyone knows that Vegas sucks. It's like on TV, you aren't allowed to be truthful or negative about anything. Political correctness totally rules on TV.

At home in Vegas, I watch lots of Wild West movies, Victorian England movies, and historical documentaries that show lots of beautiful nature and scenery, which makes me long to get out of Vegas to see the natural world again. It sucks to sit at home everyday and dream of going somewhere else that you see on the TV screen, yet be stuck there simply because your body is addicted to the comforts of home.

And that's the problem with America. It's too easy to sacrifice happiness for comfort.

Anyway, I'm headed East from here and then back West to Great Basin National Park in Eastern Nevada, before I go to Reno and visit my close friend Elizabeth, a model I met during a commercial we did in Reno back in 2001.

Then I'll go to California from there and try to meet up with some of you guys.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby navigator » Fri Nov 15, 2013 3:29 am

Utah is my favorite state in the lower 48 when it comes to scenery (and I've been to every other state). The southern part of Utah where all the national parks are located is especially breathtaking. The overlook at Bryce Canyon is amazing with all the red hoodoos below. Arches National Park is one of a kind. Zion National Park offers some great hiking opportunities, especially this time of year when there are fewer tourists everywhere. The massive red rocks at Canyonlands N.P. made for some great photo opportunities. Watching the sun rise at Monument Valley was something that I'll never forget. Four Corners wasn't particularly noteworthy, but if you go there, be sure to try the "Navajo burgers" that are sold there. They use crispy frybread instead of a hamburger bun. Very unique and very good. If you're up near SLC, check out Antelope Island State Park. Located in the Great Salt Lake, it's a very underrated park that had more bison than people roaming around when I went. All in all, there is no shortage of great parks in that state.

If you've got enough time, I would suggest passing through Nevada on Route 50 ("Loneliest Road in America") instead of I-80. Very peaceful drive with very few cars. Same goes for 305 between Battle Mountain and Austin. I spotted more dust devils than people in Central and Eastern Nevada. Just be sure to fill up your tank beforehand. That is a really desolate part of the country. Part of the reason why truckers like it so much.

Biggest disappointment in Nevada was the famous bunny ranch outside of Carson City. Talk about a disappointment in the selection, price, and attitudes of the workers! I walked out of that place without even giving them my business. I had a much better experience in Tijuana, where I negotiated my way down to $60 for two ladies. And these weren't streetwalkers either.

I wonder if they still do inspections at the California-Nevada state line. That was totally ridiculous.

Anyway, I agree with your point that you don't need to be with a female in order to enjoy Mother Nature's beauty. That is totally absurd. I was never bored or lonely when I was driving and hiking in the scenic areas out west. In fact, I was significantly less lonely there... all by myself... without another soul in sight... than I was among the millions of people celebrating New Year's Eve in Times Square. Now that was a lonely feeling that made me wish I had an attractive young female with me!
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Postby Winston » Fri Nov 15, 2013 4:29 am

I agree. I've enjoyed most of those parks in Utah too, except for the one near Salt Lake City. It's too bad SLC is so far from southern Utah. See my photo albums of that area.

https://southwestusacanyons.shutterfly.com/

Utah and Colorado are the most scenic states. Utah is the most colorful.

I wonder why Colorado is the top retirement spot in the US but not Utah?

Where is Route 50 in Nevada? You are right. Nevada is very desolate. Not much scenery. Very bland.

What's a dust devil?

I used to live near Carson City. There are 3 or 4 brothels in the complex with the Bunny Ranch, including a great strip club. I had some great lays there before. Well it was great in 2001 but I don't know about now.

I agree. If you are connected with nature and there are no people around to judge you, there's no reason to feel lonely. But if you are in a crowd and alone, then you feel left out. It's like you are only lonely around people but not when there's no people. Pretty ironic huh? lol
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby navigator » Fri Nov 15, 2013 12:11 pm

Nice photos. You took even more than I did in Utah. I took about 300 in total, which is a lot for me.

Route 50 runs parallel to I-80, from east to west, through the center of the state of Nevada. It's not as scenic as Utah or Colorado, but it was a great ride because of the wide open spaces. Between the desert landscapes and remoteness, I felt like I was on another planet at times. I also did some hiking and mountain climbing near Austin, NV in the center of the state. You can also camp for free in the national forests, but that's only for hardy souls due to the temperature extremes in the desert. Not for everybody. The lows are in the 20s this time of year.

Dust devils are what I call the little cousins of tornadoes. They usually form in deserts and typically have wind speeds of 40-60 mph. So not quite as intense or damaging as tornadoes, but still a pretty interesting phenomenon in nature. Here is a photo of a dust devil that I took in the Nevada desert. It wasn't one of my better photos, but you can see what a typical dust devil looks like...

Image

I certainly feel more at ease when I am all alone in nature, away from judgmental eyes. This is especially true in the U.S. where there exists a "predatory" environment in which you constantly have to be ready to defend yourself against antagonistic types. The northeast part of the country, where I currently live, is especially bad. There are some good people here and there, but many people I encounter couldn't be more hostile and combative.
Last edited by navigator on Tue Aug 25, 2015 6:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Winston » Sat Nov 16, 2013 2:33 pm

Well I'm in Utah now. And it sucks now because it's so cold. I can't go camping outside anymore. And the trees have shed their leaves. Oh great. There is a reason why September is considered the ideal month to travel in. How am I supposed to enjoy anything here now? It looks like I will have to go back to Nevada and try those roads that Navigator recommended, and then on to California.

Why does everything in my life happen at the wrong time, while time goes by so fast and life seems to pass you by? It's so sad and depressing. Any of you ever feel that way?

Why does everything go according to Murphy's Law? All of us have experienced Murphy's Law to some degree. If Murphy's Law is more powerful than God, karma or justice, then why don't people worship it and build shrines to it? lol

Here's a theory: Maybe if you are a freethinker and are trying to change the world and upset the status quo, like I am, then the demons/dark forces/gatekeepers that rule this world will start to gang up on you and make things go wrong to block your objectives. Thus it appears that there is some Murphy's Law force that works against you.
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

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Postby navigator » Sat Nov 16, 2013 3:21 pm

Winston wrote:Well I'm in Utah now. And it sucks now because it's so cold. I can't go camping outside anymore. And the trees have shed their leaves. Oh great. There is a reason why September is considered the ideal month to travel in. How am I supposed to enjoy anything here now? It looks like I will have to go back to Nevada and try those roads that Navigator recommended, and then on to California.

Why does everything in my life happen at the wrong time, while time goes by so fast and life seems to pass you by? It's so sad and depressing. Any of you ever feel that way?

Why does everything go according to Murphy's Law? All of us have experienced Murphy's Law to some degree. If Murphy's Law is more powerful than God, karma or justice, then why don't people worship it and build shrines to it? lol

Here's a theory: Maybe if you are a freethinker and are trying to change the world and upset the status quo, like I am, then the demons/dark forces/gatekeepers that rule this world will start to gang up on you and make things go wrong to block your objectives. Thus it appears that there is some Murphy's Law force that works against you.


Interestingly enough, it was late-September when I spent a few weeks in Utah. Fall foliage was in full effect near Boulder Summit that time of year. Lots of colorful leaves once you started driving 9,000+ ft. above sea level. That's probably the best time of year to go. Also, there were a lot fewer tourists and good flight deals to be had.

For all I know, those mountains could be snowcapped this time of year. That would be scenic in its own way based on these Google Street View images.

I try to enjoy myself wherever I am, regardless of season or weather. You could put me in the middle of a tropical hurricane and I would find it exciting, lol. If you want a change of pace (and have the time, money, and inclination), come join me in Mexico City in a few weeks. I'll buy you a few rounds and we can chat up some of the sexy mamasitas down there.
Last edited by navigator on Tue Aug 25, 2015 6:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby ntm1972 » Sat Nov 16, 2013 4:43 pm

Winston wrote:Well I'm in Utah now. And it sucks now because it's so cold. I can't go camping outside anymore. And the trees have shed their leaves. Oh great. There is a reason why September is considered the ideal month to travel in. How am I supposed to enjoy anything here now? It looks like I will have to go back to Nevada and try those roads that Navigator recommended, and then on to California.

Why does everything in my life happen at the wrong time, while time goes by so fast and life seems to pass you by? It's so sad and depressing. Any of you ever feel that way?

Why does everything go according to Murphy's Law? All of us have experienced Murphy's Law to some degree. If Murphy's Law is more powerful than God, karma or justice, then why don't people worship it and build shrines to it? lol

Here's a theory: Maybe if you are a freethinker and are trying to change the world and upset the status quo, like I am, then the demons/dark forces/gatekeepers that rule this world will start to gang up on you and make things go wrong to block your objectives. Thus it appears that there is some Murphy's Law force that works against you.


Winston, don't be such a "glass half empty" kind of guy! If it's miserable weather about which you want to write, come up to Minnesota, where I'm volunteering at a homeless shelter for men. We've already seen snow on the ground, and it's not going to get any better until April.

Life's what you make of it. I had great times in Ecuador and Malaysia, and I'm confident I'll have more great times overseas in years to come. But for right now, I consider the place where I am to be the place where I ought to be - be it by destiny or chance, or a combination of both - and I intend to make the most of it.

It's cold and rainy today, but that's not going to stop me from enjoying myself by writing, reading, and making beef stew for the guys. Complaining doesn't help, as it disturbs my inner peace, and consequently things don't flow smoothly, as they can if one lets things go their own ways.
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Postby tre » Sat Nov 16, 2013 5:35 pm

You left Las Vegas during the best time of year to be there. I HATE the heat in the summer, but I enjoyed the winters a lot. You don't get snow (for those that like it), but you can head 90 minutes away up Mt. Charleston and stay in the snow inside of a cabin. You could still camp around Las Vegas, it's not really that cold yet. The hotter parts of Arizona are also good this time of year. Many parts of California have good weather all year around.
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Postby In2dadark » Sat Nov 16, 2013 7:21 pm

navigator wrote:

The northeast part of the country, where I currently live, is especially bad. There are some good people here and there, but many people I encounter couldn't be more hostile and combative.


An extremely toxic part of the world, indeed.
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Postby navigator » Sat Nov 16, 2013 8:43 pm

In2dadark wrote:
navigator wrote:

The northeast part of the country, where I currently live, is especially bad. There are some good people here and there, but many people I encounter couldn't be more hostile and combative.


An extremely toxic part of the world, indeed.


It is the social and sexual equivalent of Chernobyl.
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Postby Winston » Sun Nov 17, 2013 2:47 pm

tre wrote:You left Las Vegas during the best time of year to be there. I HATE the heat in the summer, but I enjoyed the winters a lot. You don't get snow (for those that like it), but you can head 90 minutes away up Mt. Charleston and stay in the snow inside of a cabin. You could still camp around Las Vegas, it's not really that cold yet. The hotter parts of Arizona are also good this time of year. Many parts of California have good weather all year around.


Well no kidding. Everything in my life is upside down and mistimed. I wanted to go to Utah to get away from the heat of Vegas during August and September. By the time I can finally get to Utah, I have to go back to Nevada to escape the cold there! See how f***ed up my life always is?! I can never do what I want until it's too late! This has been the case with everything!

When I went to Moscow in 2004, I could not leave for 6 weeks. Every time I tried, something blocked me! So I stayed an extra 4 weeks which backed me up even more, since I was already three months late arriving there! The whole trip was one f***ed up mistiming after another! Everything was backed up! I spent my 20's trying to make up for my teens, and my 30's trying to make up for my 20's, etc. I am always living in the past, never in the present or future! f**k!

Everyday the past two months I've been yelling "COME ON! LET ME GO! LET'S GO!" But I can't go until it's too late. By now, Utah is too cold and is snowing. I can't camp or hike because the snow will make the trails slippery. So basically, I can't get to Utah until it's too late. Why is God/Murphy's Law such a prick and asshole?!

So yesterday I was headed to Capitol Reef, my favorite park and campground there. When I enter the inner road from interstate 70, I see snow falling, so I know it's a lost cause. I won't be able to camp or hike. So I reluctantly turn around and head toward NE Nevada toward Great Basin National Park. It was a long desolate drive with almost no cars. By the time I get to Great Basin, it's already 4pm and I can't drive up there because I have to get to the next town, Ely, before dark. So I lose that chance too.

Now I'm in Ely, in NE Nevada. I'm lucky that there are many $35 motels here this time of year. Cheaper motel rates are the only positive thing about winter season here. Nevada is so desolate outside the cities though. There's nothing to see here.

Today I will be taking highway 50, considered to be the loneliest highway in America I heard, toward Reno and Carson City. I have a close female friend in Reno to visit. And I will hang out at the complex of brothels and strip clubs I used to enjoy when I lived there in 2000 - 2001. I'm also gonna check out Virginia City, where I used to live and perform in a show. (It's also where Mark Twain lived in the 1860's and got his pen name there) I'm curious to see if anything has changed.

After that, I'll check out Lake Tahoe and then go to the SF Bay Area. I'm thinking of driving up Highway 1, along the scenic coast of California toward Mendocino.

Do you think Lake Tahoe is a good place to live? We should sell our houses in Vegas and get a nice log cabin there in the woods. It's a nice foresty environment that's in the vicinity of Reno, SF Bay Area, and Yosemite National Park. But property prices there are probably very high.

Do any of you know of any hostels to stay at in San Francisco?
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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Postby Winston » Sun Nov 17, 2013 3:24 pm

Wow check this out. There are many hostels in San Francisco for $20. Some are even under! They are mostly near Union Square.

http://www.hostels.com/san-francisco/usa
Check out the latest posts in our blog The Happier Abroaders.

Don't forget my HA Grand Ebook and Dating Sites!

"It takes far less effort to find and move to the society that has what you want than it does to try to reconstruct an existing society to match your standards." - Harry Browne, How I Found Freedom in an Unfree World
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