Being surrounded by something BLUE

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Now that it is cold outside (and snowing!), I sit on my couch everyday and reminisce about the vacations that I took in warm places. This one is all about Cancun, Mexico! We flew from Buffalo to Atlanta, changed flights to Mexico city and then flew to Cancun – a really long distance to travel. On the way to Cancun I read a couple of books and watched some movies, but on the way back I was so tired that all I did was sleep (somebody had to wake me up at the buffalo airport!).

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I like to shop and dine in the local currency, so the first thing I did after landing at Mexico city was to exchange the currency. If I end up not spending all of it, I get to keep it as a souvenir!

 10 reasons you should visit Cancun.

1. It’s sunny and warm!

This alone should be a reason enough to love any place. For somebody who had been shivering in the buffalo winter for 5 months, this warm place was a paradise. For once I could head out in the open without my heavy jacket, and all those heavy winter accessories and not freezing to death! The sheer ability to walk out in the streets in your sandals (and no thick socks!) and feel the warmth of the sun against your skin felt extremely great.

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2. The ocean.

Who doesn’t love water and beautiful beaches! The Caribbean coast is as beautiful as it is in the pictures. With clear light blue water and white sand, it’s really hard to click a bad picture.

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My first day in Cancun, rushed to the beach as soon as we checked in!

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This is how beautiful it really was.

3. It’s ‘THE’ place to be during spring break.

Cancun is a famous spring break destination, has a decent party scene and places like CoCo Bongo and Mandala are jam packed (and have pretty high entry fees too).

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4. Awesome food.

Where else can you find the most delicious and authentic Mexican food other than in Mexico?! I’m a Mexican food lover and try to eat as much as I can when I travel to the southwest (you don’t get such great Mexican/Tex-Mex food in the north). Be it salsa and chips or the plain tacos, there were the best I have ever had.

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This is just a tiny part of what we actually ate!

5. You can forget partying and become a tourist for the day.

We partied in the night and visited places during the day with just 4 hrs of sleep every night. If you like to do some touristy things there is Chichen Itza – one of the wonders of the world few hours away by bus (you can book a tour bus). Another reason to visit this place – you get to eat more awesome food in that area! And if you are in that area don’t miss out on this mesmerizing cave (Yes, they allow you to swim in there!)

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Chichen Itza

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This water is supposed to make you younger!

6. You can actually see sting rays in their natural habitat!

Yes, I did! I almost touched it, glad I didn’t! 🙂 I can’t swim and that didn’t stop me from snorkeling, thanks to my friends! We went to a place called Xel-ha where I saw amazing corals, beautiful fishes too. My most memorable thing was snorkeling under a boat and when  suddenly hundreds of fishes came out of their hiding and swam past me.

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Xel-Ha

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7. You get to see creatures which you have only seen in books and on TV.

This guy was chilling around the bus stop while we screamed in fear! He/she was seen everywhere, even near the Chichen itza area.

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8. You get to stay in a hotel right next to a beach and it doesn’t make a hole in your pocket!

Hotels are pretty cheap when booked quite early. We got a place which had a nice view of the ocean and was well within our budget (read a student’s budget).

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Our hotel

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The beach in our hotel’s backyard!

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9. There is just so much to see!

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Sunny streets                                                        Pretty little shops

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A wall art                                               A church on our way back from Chichen Itza

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Oh wait, where’s No. 10 you ask?

That’s for you to figure out on your visit to Cancun  🙂

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Cruising through the Desert

I visited Sequoia National Park during mid August, flew to phoenix and drove all the way to the SNP (Mr Husband was visiting from Austria and wanted to drive in the US, and since I love to drive, I didn’t complain).

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The Giant Sequoia against a car

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Met the largest tree on earth General Sherman.

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Instead of taking the faster freeway, decided to take the historic Route 66 while driving back from Sequoia to Phoenix. Best decision ever!

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The road was deserted, stopped at random places and clicked pictures like crazy. After a while noticed a lot of black rocks on the side of the road. According to Google, it was lava which spewed out of an ancient (now extinct) volcano. Since I love volcanoes, decided to make a detour and visit the Amboy Crater. I really wanted to go all the way up to the crater, but it was quite a walk and it was extremely hot outside (read 116F).

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A rock with the extinct volcano in the background

Stopped at the historic route 66 road sign and clicked some pictures. The landscape was amazing. Never expected desert to look so beautiful.

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With beautiful sunsets..

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Ever since I landed in Phoenix, I had been looking for Saguaro (the huge cactus species that shows up when you google Arizona). To my utter disappointment, I couldn’t find a single one, in-spite of searching for 4 days (no, I don’t have vision issues). Finally, it was time to check out of the hotel and catch the flight back to buffalo (I’m extremely sad at this point and my husband is trying to comfort me by telling that we would come back to Arizona, just to view the cacti (yeah, I can be extremely childish sometimes)). And all of a sudden, like magic, there was a huge cactus right in front of me! Since we had checked into the hotel in the middle of the night we hadn’t noticed it.

You can see how happy I am in this photograph taken with the cactus. 😀

On second thoughts I decided not to put up the picture of me ridiculously grinning over a cactus. Instead, here is a cat :

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I got this cute little cactus from Phoenix (the green creepy lizard-sort-of-a-thing is not real though).

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While I was typing this, Mr Bear got interested in Asimov. I had to literally snatch the book from him… Literate bears are a nightmare! 🙂 Btw, I found him in Sequoia National Park.

P.S. he is not real! 🙂

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Portland

Winter is just around the corner! I miss the sun already 😦

It’s been cloudy and dark for a few days now.. Last year, just before the sun decided to go on a vacation, we had visited Portland over a weekend… I found these pictures while I was checking my old external drive..The Saturday market, the Powell’s, Dante’s, the food trucks, the Voodoo donut shop were all covered and conquered :). I feel like going on a vacation right now, to someplace where the sun still shines bright and nice, and it still feels like summer. I guess I’m still not ready for the winter Buffalo winter 😦

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This place had awesome coffee

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A bright sunny day!

Seattle’s been pretty dull lately, filled with rainy days. Today, all of a sudden the weather is amazing.

The last time it was sunny, we went to the Kerry park.  To my disappointment, It wasn’t much of a park. But it had an amazing view of Seattle with snow covered Mt Rainier in the background. There were flowers everywhere and the place was spectacular.

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I hope you guys are having a bright and colorful spring  🙂

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Yesterday was an absolutely amazing sunny day. I took a trip to a nearby lake, took some pictures..Had to return after a while because it started getting quite cold..

Here it is, the beautiful lake union,shimmering in sunlight 🙂

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I could just cover 5% of this beautiful place…Will go there again, some day..

When I’m not roaming around clicking pictures, I’m working on my crochet blanket and teaching myself to work with pastels. Need to work a lot on learning to blend the colors.. The edges are still sharp..

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I wasn’t too happy with the light purple block.. So, I changed the pattern to granny square and added a bit green to it.. When I lay it down on the floor, I felt I should have added white instead. But its too late now, I have finished all 8 blocks and that’s too much of work.

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Few weeks back I found out Seattle had a library..So, I got myself a library card!!:) I love books..This library has a very good collection of books on art and crafts too!

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That’s my library card, isn’t that cute?  They had lots of designs, I just loved this one.. I guess its probably meant for young members 🙂

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I just can’t wait to finish these and rush back to the library to get more awesome books 🙂

Today seems to be like any other day, quite uneventful…. Here I am, relaxing on my bean bag, thinking about so many things I have to tend to…

I have these 200 odd photos on my phone, which are taking up quite an amount of space.. I tried to delete few but each one seemed close to my heart some way or the other and I didn’t have the heart to delete it (I have a copy on my laptop, but still I want it on my phone!!! )… Anyways, I found these pics which I had clicked a long time ago, and let me tell you, I love photopgraphing things… I just have a basic camera now, but I plan to get a high end camera sometime in near future.

Here are the pics:

The view from my apartment.. Twilight!!

Snake that crawled into our backyard…Look at the markings on its skin, Isn’t it beautiful?

My favorite headphones and the wooden bangle that I hand painted….

Roses and Kareena!! Both beautiful!!

Yummy chocolates against yummy crochet! What do I choose?!

Well, thats all I have right now.. I also found few pictures of crochet in there:

A sock in progress!

Crochet table top which is still in progress……….

A basket weave scarf