Thursday 30 June 2011

USA Trip 2011 - Overview

In late May 2011 Ruby, Jeremy and I travelled to the USA to both see Ruby's parents and for Ruby to attend a conference in Denver in early June. We decided instead of flying from Seattle to Denver we would spend a week driving there and also visit Yellowstone national park, Devil's Tower and Mt Rushmore. For the full list of photos from the trip see the following photo album:

The full photo album is available via the following link: USA Trip 2011

The road trip days and Denver are detailed in the following blog posts:
Day 1: Where's the Roadkill?
Day 2: Roadworks and Rainbows
Day 3: Lens Envy
Day 4: Lots of Old Geysers
Day 5: Blowing in the Wind
Day 6: Smaller than Expected
Mammoths and Denver Days
USA Trip: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

The first 5 days of the road trip were blogged on the road when we had access to wifi (most days which was great). While the last couple of days did have wifi we did not have much time to post (let alone write a post).
I was originally planning to finish up organising the photos and the last bit of writing while we were in Denver. However, my time was mainly taken up taking care of Jeremy (see Mammoths and Denver Days) and the past couple of weeks in Sydney have simply flown by.

Note also the first 5 days have been edited to include a number of new bits (map links, more pictures, corrected distances).

Flights with Jeremy
Jeremy is definitely at an age where flying is difficult and he certainly let us know he was unhappy! Last time we travelled to the USA he slept most of the way and he is a bit young to be distracted by the entertainment system (though I suspect he is not far off being interested).

The flight to Los Angeles (on a Qantas A380 which was great!) was the hardest as Jeremy did not want to go to sleep sitting up. We were in a bulkhead row and could not move the armrests. Also the flight left just after lunch and he did not want to go to sleep mid afternoon. He slept better on the flight from Dallas to Brisbane (a new route for Qantas in 2011) as we left in the evening and he could lay out flat. Also both flights were long (at 12.5 and 15 hours) which did not help!

Blogging on the road
Blogging on the road was a good idea (yeah look how long it took me to blog once we got home!). However, I think it took too long to get a post done and these are some of the reasons:
  • I had not setup the plugin for iPhoto which uploads photos with all the metadata to Picasa (see this blog post from 2008 on why I use the plugin). This meant I had to use the crappy web interface and hand enter the data.
  • I should have worked out how the blog posts would look before leaving and set up a template. That way I could spend more time just writing and not fiddling about with how the post looks (which is one of the reasons why the first 5 days have been edited).
  • Sort out geotagging once and for all. Unfortunately the gps logger I bought on the last trip did not work properly on this one. I thought I was prepared as I did test it before leaving home and it worked ok, but it has not since. Last trip it really made geo-tagging the photos easy!
  • Some nights Jeremy went to sleep a bit late and it was hard to pull out the laptop and start writing / organising photos.

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