Queen of Trades; Travel and Photography- Category [Travel/Stories/Tips]

In the past seven months I can say that I have grown quite a lot when it comes to climbing. I enjoy the sport quite a lot. It’s a practice of patience, finger strength, flexibility, and of course repetition. Yesterday some of the climbers from the Rock out gym all joined together to make a nice girl trip out to a gym in Tallahassee. I had never been there before and I was quite excited about the idea of going with a bunch of other women and getting a chance to mess around with Top rope. It’s not very often that D and I get to do Top rope in general so I was really pumped about it. 

The girls and I had made our way out there with full bellies and an open mind about what was to come. The gym was in a warehouse and we were warned that it can get kind of hot and muggy in there because of they don’t have any air conditioning. Not only that but some of the girls were saying that the gym wasn’t to great in terms of the routes and the atmosphere. Despite that I think everybody was ready to get their climb on. 

Once we got the gym we had to sign some waivers and from there they asked about Top rope gear. (Harnesses, Greegrees, and so one). Luckily we knew some people that let us borrow their gear and D had let me borrow his harness and ACT. The only thing we had to do was take a quick test to see if we actually knew what we were doing when we were doing the top rope. I was pretty nervous to be honest. D and I hadn’t done much top rope so I wasn’t sure how much I was going to remember and because of that I held off on taking the test. I followed them into the gym and watched the other girls as they started taking the test. While I was watching and one of the girls was waiting her turn she asked if I wanted to be retaught. A little nervous and unsure and decided to let her show me what to do. 

She showed me how to tie in and gave me some pointers to help me remember. She pointed out that I could take the test and see how I do and if I don’t pass then I can’t belay, I will just climb with the girls. With that statement and a look at the test I decided to go ahead and give it a go. I didn’t see a reason not to and after my review I felt a little better. So I went ahead and put on my harness and waited my turn. 


The test itself wasn’t bad. It was free with the day pass in the gym. Basically you just had to show that you knew how to tie in and from there you had to show how you would belay somebody if they were climbing. With that in mind I went ahead and did my best to show here. I even had one of the girls do a "test climb" and "fall" for me so that I can show that I was safe to belay. 

I passed. 

It was quite wonderful to know that I could actually pass a test. I did have some mess ups but honestly it was one of those things that made me smile. I was so nervous about it and I wasn't quite sure if I was ready to do the test itself. So when I got that day pass to belay I was so happy and relieved. D had taught me well and I felt really good about it. 

With that as a reinforce on my mood we went about climbing. We did quite a lot of top rope and very little bouldering but I thought it was pretty awesome. We got to do something that we don't really ever do. It was a change from the usual bouldering experience and I honestly was super happy about it. We climbed for about four hours and by the time we finished we had decided that we were well worn out. Our hands were dry, our fingers were hurting and we had a nice workout. 


All in all I would say that the experience was worth it. Of course I don’t have a lot of experience in climbing gyms but I do think that being exposed to them is a good thing. I get to see different routes, mess around with different holds, and just enjoy being able to do this sport while I can. 



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Today we are heading to Tallahassee to check out a gym there. It's a girls trip and I am super excited for it. It's not very often that I actually get to go on a girls night out and I really enjoy the company of other girls .


So while I am out and about I do ask for you to check out my art gallery and purchase pieces while they are around. Every purchase helps me with my future travels and I have a lot of them around the corner. 


If you are interested just click that buy now button. Thanks you guys 

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Yesterday was a rough day. D and I had made the decision to make the drive home a straight through excursion. He drove for most of the day and then I drove for a few hours before we got dinner. The snow was coming down when we were in Ohio so I had my first snow driving experience. In total we saw fourteen accidents while we were doing our 50mph pace. At least four of them were cars that had completely turned over and sadly we couldn’t do anything but keep moving. When we stopped for dinner in Cincinnati we took our time and enjoyed the meal. We figured that the snow would be done falling by the time we got back in the car and to our amazement we were right. 

The game plan from there was for D to drive until he got tired. While he was driving I was going to go ahead and catch some Z's so that I was ready to switch out with him. So for the next four hours I catched some light Z's while he played some music from Weird Al. It was an on and off kind of sleep. The problem with his car (the Prius) is that the car itself is pretty small so when it is full to the brim with stuff, it is literally full. It’s not all the comfortable and reclining was difficult. So for me to catch sleep I pretty much stayed in the center of the seat and did my best to keep my head from dropping and making things awkward. 

Around midnight I woke up to him asking if we wanted to stop at the KOA in Kentucky (we stayed at one in Horse Cave Kentucky that was about eight hours home). I told him no and that I was good to just drive home. As much as I wanted to go see mammoth cave again I also wanted to just go home. Both were appealing and we both were broke. With everything we did we needed to put a stop somewhere. This was my way of saving us some cash. 

D drove for another hour before it became to much for him to keep going. So we pulled into a gas station, I got some coffee and I took over the car. The big difference between D and I is that he hasn’t really done a lot of exploring in the U.S so for him doing these kinds of drives are new. He hasn’t stayed up and driven straight through to get home. He hasn’t experienced the jitters you get from having too much coffee. The late night stops at the gas station to have some snacks so that you have something to chew. For four years I have been doing this all on my own and for four years I have grown to understand myself more and more when I am traveling. So for me, the last six hours would be a cake walk to get home. 

So I drove. I drove us at a pace of 75 mph and kept it there the entire way. Google said we would be home between 6-7 a.m and I was going to do my best to make it there at the time and no later. So for the rest of the drive I cranked up the music and played my podcast while my bf slept away. Every now and then he would awaken, check on me and then go back to sleep. 

We did make it home around 7 a.m and it was rough. I had a total of three hours of sleep throughout an entire day of traveling. So when we got back home we unpacked the car and I then hoped my happy self-back in my own bed. Let me say, that it is so satisfying to sleep in your own bed after a long ass trip. It makes everything worth it. 

With that being said though please be careful if you are making a long straight through trip home. It really can be dangerous and if you aren’t sure about doing anything like that then please find somewhere to sleep. It really is dangerous to pull all night drives and the possibility of you falling asleep at the wheel is very high. So please, please ,please be careful while you are out there traveling. 



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When I was younger we had a jet ski. The jet ski was one of my favorite things to use on the water. It was fast, fun. And you could do doughnuts all day. It really was a treat whenever we got to go and I always felt alive driving it on the water. As I got older so did the jet ski and eventually it got to to a point where fixing it just wasn't worth it anymore. So we sold it. For years I've missed that free feeling I used to get whenever I drove the jet ski. It was like I was flying every time. 

Yesterday we made our way our to Syracuse where it just so happened we would be doing some snowmobiling. I've never done it before and I was pretty pumped for it. It sounded like fun and of course it was almost mixed with the snow which made it 10x better. Cold, snow and sports all mixed in one. Now that was my cup of tea. 

Once the mechanics was explained to me (which was pretty simple considering that it was just like a jet ski) I quickly caught on to the controls .as a kid I only knew two modes. All out or stop .There wasn't much in between and I pretty much operate the same way now. The only exception is the car since it is my main way or getting around. 

So with our guide up front and us on the snow mobiles we made our way out into the field where we decided to do some test runs. Just to make sure we can turn them and to get used to the speeds of the snowmobile. After about fifteen minutes we headed out on the trails and made our way through the snow. Honestly it was so beautiful. The scenery was breathtaking and I felt like I was in a winter Wonderland. 

After some trails we came out to an open field where we played with the hills and got some air. We learned how to wheelie and we learned the differences between the snowmobiles. One was lighter then the other so it could go much faster then the average snow mobile and it was quite the machine to play around with. 

Towards the end of our adventure we crossed some roads to make our way to the lake. It was frozen solid all the way around and at first glance it didn't look like a lake. It looked like a big open field and I was surprised when I found out it was a lake itself.  So we did a couple of rounds going on the lake and once we were done we headed back. 

In total we spent three hours out there just going wild on the snowmobile. It was a crazy amount of fun and I honestly felt like I was flying again. It was such a wonderful time and I loved every single bit of it. 

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Our little vacation is almost to an end and I do feel a little sad. Being up here with the cold, ice and snow has been an insight to who I am as a person. It has taught me that I really don't mind the cold (which I knew already but this verified it) and even when its 18 degrees outside I can still do my usual running routine. To be honest it has lifted my spirits and has taught me that I am stronger then I imagined. I've been to new York twice now but I've never really stayed here for a longer period of time. 

By staying with D's sister I have had an opportunity I wouldn't have otherwise had. It gave us a place to sleep and it also gave us a chance to do certain things that I have never done before .we got to hike some trails that I would have never had a chance to see if I was doing my normal routine and I wouldn't have visited the comic book bar if his sister didn't tell us about it

The icing on the cake though was being able to see Niagara Falls in the winter time. You hear about the beauty of it while it's frozen and you see all these picture's online but to be honest it doesn't beat actually seeing it in person. Seeing it in person is like nothing I could have imagined and the place looks completely different and it gave me an appreciation for this place. Of course Niagara on the American side is still in terrible shape compared to the Canadian side but it still is a pretty neat location to visit. 


So if you are visiting or just passing through make sure to take some time to look around the area. It really is beautiful and there are plenty of things to do. Hiking, walking, drinking, sightseeing and of course shopping. All of that is avaliable around the Buffalo/ Niagara area. 

I'm glad that I was able to see this place in a completely different view and I can't wait to see it again 


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