Arriving in LA, In-N-Out Burger and a Magic Show!

Very excited to have started my incredible 20 day holiday with my boyfriend in LA, Lake Tahoe and Mexico. We’ve named it #Laxico2016. You can follow our adventure with this #tag but I also plan to blog everyday (says she on Day 3!) Here we go!

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We started with a 13 hour flight with Virgin Airlines from Sydney to Los Angeles. Can’t lie, I was excited! Travelling to LA to see my Cousin and friends for an amazing holiday. I travel a lot but this time, I am travelling with my boyfriend! It’s been a bit of a dream of mine to take an epic adventure with someone I care about, it’s going to be awesome!

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No sleep! Tried. Maybe I got half an hour. It was a day flight, leaving at 11.30am Aussie time and arriving 1am Aussie time, so it was a bit of a difficult time to sleep. It was 6.10 am in America and we were wretched. Dealing with LA customs and security was not on our list of fun things to do…. but, we got through in an hour! A record for LAX it seems.

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We hopped a shuttle to the Alamo car rental shop. We booked our car for the LA to Lake Tahoe roadtrip through DriveNow Rental company. They were super helpful in securing an SUV for us with all weather tyres, suitable for driving at the snow. We were directed to the SUV aisle and then we could pick any car we wanted in that class… crazy!! It was a tough choice but I went with the red one! If in doubt, go with colour.

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Next stop, my friends house in San Gabriel! Peak hour traffic was hectic but we got through in pretty decent time and it was lovely to be off the main roads and into more suburban areas of Los Angeles. I was SO excited to see my cousin Bill! Cuzzie Bill happened to also be turning 93 that day and it was so lovely to be there.

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After much needed breakfast and a nap! We went out for the second highest priority on our list… IN-N-OUT Burger! We had been talking about it and craving it for weeks!! So off we went, there happened to be one just 7 minutes away! Bliss. Hamburgers, fries and shakes. Simple yet oh so delicious. After lunch a spot of shopping at a discount ski outlet and then home for some rest again.

Stepback! How is my cousin 93? He’s my Grandma’s cousin. So he’s my first cousin, twice removed. Confusing right? Yep, that’s why we just call him Cuz! He also happens to be an incredible magician! Bill “Magic 500” Hunter. He’s been performing magic for a living for more than 47 years and on our first night in America, he performed a show for us! I’ve seen some of the tricks before, many times actually, but it still brings me such joy. I love seeing the reactions of others and my boyfriends laughs and facials were priceless. The newspaper trick is a winner!

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Oh we also got to stay with these super cuties and will take care of them for a few days during our trip at the house we stay at! What a trip!

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World Tour Travel Planning … how to … or how not to!

Travel planning can be tricky especially when it’s for an extended period of time. There are so many options of places to go, things to do and people to see, it can often be overwhelming.

I’m afraid I don’t have the answer to the travel planning question. My strategy is not well thought out or structured and I don’t use any programs or fancy apps. I did want to share however some of my rough plans from my last year’s Lovelly World Tour 2014. I managed to squeeze in a thing or two…

Central Park, NYC

Central Park, NYC

USA travel plans (Written April 2014 on Iphone Notes App.)

May 5-11 Toronto

May 11 -14 – Hallifax

May 14- 19 – Indiannapolis

May 19-24 – Roscoe, Illinois

May 25- 31 – NYC!!!

June 1 – June 6 – Austin, Texas

Austin, Texas

Austin, Texas

June 6 – 10 – San diego? San Fran ?

June 10 – June 15 – MEXICO

June 15 -17 –LAX

June 17 – June 24 – Hawaii

June 24 – LAX ….POSS back to Chicago or somewhere with Cuzzie?

June 29 – Fort Lauderdale

June 30 – July 6 – Bimini, Bahamas

July 7 – 10 – Illinois to see Cuzzie before I go

July 11 – go to Washington DC for 3 days or so?

July 14- Back to Europe

34 days in Europe… To be continued.

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It didn’t work out exactly like this when I did 4 months overseas in from April- August 2014, but I got pretty close. It was fairly hectic and I think the major thing I would change would be to drop a destination or two to give me more time to travel. I had such short timeframes it meant I spent a lot of money on flights. When I did take the bus or get a ride, it really saved the pennys in the piggy bank.

My amazing Cuzzy Bill in Roscoe, Illinois

My amazing Cuzzy Bill in Roscoe, Illinois

Lesson learnt: When planning a big tour or trip, give yourself a few days buffer between locations for changes in plans and for more flexibility in your travel plans. Also, perhaps for a little more relaxation.

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco

Christmas with the Mayor of Warren, Illinois, USA

Repost from Bill “Magic 500” Hunter’s blog, magic500.wordpress.com

 

 

Bill’s young cousin Emma visited his dear friend Wayne Raisbeck, the Mayor of Warren.

 

 

 

See a tour of Wayne’s wonderful house decorated for Christmas!

 

 

 

Bill Hunter has amazing friends all over the world due to his kind, generous and loving nature that is simply infectious.

 

 

 

HAPPY HOLIDAYS EVERYONE!

 

 

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LA – California girl

So Here I am in Los Angeles, California, USA.

This is me!! …….. or will be soon!

 

Currently sunbaking in the backyard of my friends house and it’s about 72 degrees Farenheit. or 25 degrees celcius. Lovely!

I’m staying here with my famous Cuz Bill, you can learn more about him at his very own website- http://www.magic500.wordpress.com. This is his friends house in San Gabriel and we’ll be here for 11 days. So happy.

Yesterday we went to Torrance, CA, to visit the private museum of INDY 500 Winner from 1963, and my personal friend, Parnelli Jones. I met Parnelli back in 2009 with my magician cuz when he was performing in the suites. Parnelli and his son PJ Jones were there for the qualifying weekend.

His museum is full of trophies, cars, pieces of car, memorabilia and gifts from fans. It’s incredible and I was so lucky to see it. Jim, a friend of my cousin and Parnelli’s mechanic for years was also there and such a gracious host. They spent an hour an a half showing us around.

Today we are off to the Justice Brothers business. My cousin knows Ed Justice, also from the racing circuit, and also a magician.

Tonight I will go to a gig with my friend Jenn who I met on Australia day in London haha random. We’ll go to a vietnamese restaurant at – Viet Noodle Bar- 3133 Glendale Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90039.

then the gig is:

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Location:The Conga Room
Time:Tuesday, 01 February 2011 21:00

– This is the band i’m seeing – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1An2pjS4mKE

 

I’m really looking forward to our time in LA!

Off to Venice beach and Santa Monica tomorrow! Tough life

 

Tale of Australia from an American Sailor

This is a poem written by an American Sailor in 1944 when he was serving in Australia with my Cousin, Bill Hunter.

This is about the Australians from the American sailors:

 

Down below the South Pacific

In the sunny Tropic Sea,

There lies a country called Australia,

which once was new to me.

Since the time that I have been here,

Which is several months or more.

I’ve met the people, learned their ways

And would like my home once more.

For I’m sick of mates and cobbers,

Trams, pubs and teatime too,

And i’m damned tired of these Aussies

bumming smokes the way they do.

It’s uncle this,uncle that

More planes, more bombs, more guns

and when the nips are whipped

Don’t ever ask who won

Cos you will hear the Aussies holler;

“We Anzacs are the ones

Just give me 2 bob and a cigarette,

I’ll tell you how twas done”

Yes, i’m tired of Australia

and the whole of this Anzac race

If anyone wants to trade

they sure as hell can have my place

Cos now i’ve seen Australia,

and when this war is won

This bloke is going right back home

and on the bloody run.

Recited by William Hunter

(aka Bill “Magic 500” Hunter)

for more info on this time period

go to Ozatwar

see stories about Frank Morill

http://www.ozatwar.com/usnavy/usnavalbasehospitalno10

In and around Illinois

CHICAGO 

So after 6 hours of travel ,again, and 2 hours of sleep I arrived in Chicago. A wreck! Exhausted, bit over it and 6 months of travel starting to hit me like a tonne of bricks- that’s it! Time to go home.

 

So I changed my flights in order to arrive home on Saturday not Monday and would surprise EVERYONE!

 

That afternoon, Memorial Day, I was lucky enough to go a little out of town to a stunning town called Wilmett to meet my PR Guru Mr Jim Martin and his lovely family. I was so lucky to have an evening with this kind family and learn a lot about my study area PR.

 

 One day in Downtown Chicago. It’s a fantastic city with amazing parks, buildings and great shopping. I enjoyed seeing the bean in Millennium park, the harbour and the river going through town. I also got to enjoy a famous Deep dish pizza pie- the best! But the rain came at 4pm and I had had enough, time to go back to my Cuz!

 

 That night I was happy to be back in Roscoe, Illinois for some well earned rest!

 

Last Days ILLINOIS 

My last days were spent soaking up every last bit of fun I could with my cuz and just enjoying his company.

 

I was very lucky to get to meet the amazing man Gary Haun, who penned the book VISION OF THE HEART which everyone must read. (http://www.flipkart.com/vision-heart-gary-haun/141073918x-4nx3f98m4p) Gary is blind and has not let that stop him one bit, he has climbed Kilimanjaro and swam with sharks, he is also a magician, but best of all he has the kindest heart! It was a pleasure to meet this wonderful man!

 

I also got to meet a few more of cuz’s wonderful friends like John and Doug and got to see where he grew up in Monroe, Wiscosin- home of the cheeses! James joined us again for my last day.

 

 There were many tears shed at that last time at the bus stop and the bus ride itself was difficult.

 

A 36 hour journey ahead of me but I was ready. It’s time to go home.