Jul 20, 2014

World Domination Summit: Passing The Torch

Founder Chris Guillebeau brings it all home at WDS. Copyright www.amandacastleman.com

So the World Domination Summit (WDS) rolled around again. And like many supervillains, I just couldn't bring the same passion to the sequel.

Founded in 2011, this conference rallies bloggers, entrepreneurs and non-profit leaders – among other intrepid souls – to trade tips on having adventurous lives while giving back to their communities. It's like summer camp for creatives... and tickets remain rare as unicorns (released in just two waves, they sell out in minutes). I happened to wake up early enough one year, a minor miracle in and of itself, so I decided to check things out.

WDS13 felt transcendent. After 19 years as a journalist, chasing from assignment to assignment, I stepped back and finally thought about steering Ms. Toad's Wild Ride. I even took action. Imperfect action, but bold and brave action nonetheless. And I celebrated the stumbles as well as the triumphs, just as the summit taught me. Because they're part of the process, and that's OK.

But in 2014, distraction and impatience ruled the roost. Why was I hobnobbing with all these shiny, happy people when I could be writing, working, moving forward? Or at least biking around Portland, eating phenomenal food with friends?

What changed?

Absolutely nothing, except me. I found WDS when I needed it. Now I don't.

So grateful as I am to the conference, I won't be back in 2015. It's time to free up that space for someone who needs a big, bright bolt of inspiration.

Dominate wisely and well, my friends!

Jul 12, 2014

Portland: Bird, Bird, Bird, B-bird's The Word!

Supermoon by the station, fried padrĂ³ns at the Multnomah Whiskey Library and Wanderlust Circus's contortionist shooting a bow with her feet. Images copyright AC.
Once again, Oregon is redefining awesome from its food to its cruiser bike paths and cool people tricks (especially the circus acrobats at the World Domination Summit kickoff party). If my heart wasn't already mortgaged to Seattle, I'd be apartment-hunting here in a flash...

Jun 27, 2014

Exploring Appaloosa country & its farmland

The American red-barn vogue traces back to farmers home-brewing paint from rust, lime and skimmed milk. Fascinating!

Images of the Palouse in SE Washington, copyright www.amandacastleman.com.

Jun 25, 2014

When The Twain Do Meet: Expect High Humidity

Apparently I polluted eastern Washington with hippie rainforest clouds from the "other side." But I still caught a glimpse of how very amazing photography can be out here.

A red-winged blackbird, Palouse barn and the view from Steptoe Butte: the first afternoon of a Four Seasons Photography tour of the Palouse in southeast Washington. Copyright: AC

Jun 19, 2014

I Can See Your Halo, Halo, Halo...

Bitten kitten, yet again... Our 7lb (full-grown) Badger continues to tangle with the Demon Cat of Broadview. Enter the cone!

Now kitty only goes in reverse.

Yes, I mock my pets' humiliation on the interwebs. Image copyright: www.amandacastleman.com.

Jun 13, 2014

Meanwhile, Beneath Wayne Manor...

Today I climbed – and snorkeled – through some of Bonaire's 300-400 (largely unexplored) caves. Epic!

Writer Susan Buzby Barnes and Leo Hoogenboom of Flow Bonaire explore caves. Yes. He IS Batman and even has the not-yet-released glider to prove it. Images: AC.

Jun 12, 2014

You Can Take A Horse To Water And Swim!

Poco Blonde Princess and I cooled off in the lagoon, sheltered from sea spray and desert winds, in Bonaire.

Thanks to Lisa Sonne for the lovely photo, taken during a Rancho Washikemba ride.