2013 is in the rearview mirror and we have arrived at 2014. Last year, like all years, was filled with good times and bad. My aunt passed away and my cousin got married. I said goodbye to the Army, and hello to a new job. It only took about eight months at the new job before the travel bug hit, and I left my job to go backpacking in Turkey and Croatia.

A friend of mine from the Army invited me to Germany in November and even though I was hesitant to fly after my illness, I managed to make it there. Two days after stepping off the plane, I was in a German hospital with pneumonia. Still, I’m glad I traveled and have no regrets. Although I’ve never regretted taking a trip, there are plenty of trips I regret not taking. Although I didn’t get to travel as much as I would have liked in 2013, there were some pretty awesome moments. Even with all of the challenges, it has been a good year, and I can’t wait to see what 2014 has waiting for me. So far the New Year is looking pretty good. I’m still in Germany and in a few weeks, I will visit Stonehenge, Canterbury Cathedral, Dover Castle, London, and Malta.

1. All faiths are welcome at Yogaville, Virginia. I had no idea that Yogaville even existed, and a weekend there changed my life. LOTUS Shrine

2. Climbing to the top of Fort Story’s lighthouse, the oldest in America, where George Washington once walked.Fort Story Lighthouses (Old and New)

3. Exploring an ancient 1,100 year old cellar in Limberg, Germany while waiting for lunch. In the Limburg Cellar

4. Legend has it that the initials “GW” were carved into the side of the Natural Bridge by George Washington. Thomas Jefferson liked the site so well as a boy, that as a man, he built a vacation cabin there.Natural Bridge Up Close

5. Accidentally finding out Shenandoah National Park is 25 miles from my front door. When work is too stressful, this is the place to go to reconnect with nature and clear your mind.Shenandoah Mist

6. Hanging out at Mr. Jefferson’s House…..

7. Hanging out at Mr. Madison’s house…
Montpelier Mansion

8. Looking for ghosts at Old Talbott Tavern in Bardstown, KY.
Unknown Talbott Artifact

9. Walking in the footsteps of Charlemagne in Aachen, Germany.IMG_7318

10. Seeing a little piece of my favorite city, Ravenna, in Berlin.Bode Museum Berlin Ravenna Mosaic

11. Picking apples for the very first time at Carter Mountain Orchard.Apple Picking

12. Seeing a dinosaur bone in the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum that had fossilized into amethyst.IMG_0781

13. Staying at the historic Jefferson Hotel in Richmond, Virginia. Jefferson Hotel

14. Reading the graffiti left by Civil War soldiers from the North and the South.Yankees Caught Hell 3

15. Visiting America’s first permanent English colony at Jamestown, Virginia.Jamestown Virginia

Here’s to 2014……