The following links are to photos of my various travels around the world. I hope you enjoy looking at them as much as I enjoyed taking them. Originally, I put the first set of photos on a free hosted website but there were several problems with that. First, I only had enough space on the server to store about 100 pictures. Second, so many people were visiting to look at the pictures I kept getting nastygrams from the hosting company about exceeding my bandwidth allocation causing them to shut down the site and redirect the visitors to their own advertising. Third, the hosting company I was using was less than reliable. After looking at a number of options I decided to just buy a domain name and pay for hosting rather than continue trying to juggle free hosted accounts.
Thus, PuraVidaTravels.Com was born. What self-respecting computer geek doesn't have his own domain name these days? In case you haven't figured it out yet Pura Vida literally means Pure Life in Spanish. It's also sort of the national slogan in Costa Rica. Until you've experienced Latin America for yourself it's very difficult to understand the concept of pura vida. The culture of Latin America is similar to that of the US yet vastly different at the same time. The people there seem to have been born with an understanding of the concept of one day at a time. Every time I return from anywhere in Latin America I feel totally at peace with the world and have a feeling of serenity about my lot in life. How can merely going to some "place" have that great of an effect on me? I have no idea and I don't want to know because I feel the very reason this place is magical for me is because of the mystery.
Pura Vida has another meaning for me. I really feel that for the first time in my nearly 41 years on this planet that I am truly living pure life. I finally decided to quit talking about things and actually do them no matter what other people think. It is amazing what you can accomplish when you set your mind to something. I have done a lot of travelling in my life but I have always been encumbered in the past by the limitations I had placed on myself of why I couldn't do things. Today I focus on how I can do things and the results are vastly different. It's truly been a life changing year and I continually feel blessed for all of the opportunities I have been given.
A lot of people ask me how I can travel so much and there's a very simple answer. I can do my job from anywhere in the world as long as I have an Internet connection. It's amazing how much the Internet has changed the way we live. On my second trip to Costa Rica I was sitting in my hotel room "chatting" with my boss via instant messenger, reading my email, and working on a problem in one of our plants in Mexico all at the same time. At that moment this thought occurred to me, "Why do I work in Pittsburgh when I could be anywhere in the world and do the exact same thing?" As I began to think about it I realized there is absolutely no reason that I need to be in Pittsburgh other than that's where my cubicle is. The more I thought about it, the more I realized what a great opportunity I had to do something very few people can do. I knew I had a chance to see the world and get paid while doing it.
Now fully convinced that I was onto the greatest idea since sliced bread I needed to convince my boss that it was a great idea as well. As you might imagine my request was met with a response of "You want to do what?" Fortunately for me I work for a company that allows people to work remotely from home. All I was proposing that was different was changing where my "home" would be 1 week each month. After working remotely from Costa Rica a couple of times on a trial basis my plan was finally approved and my dream had become reality.
As you can see, I have plenty more trips scheduled this year so I should have a lot more photos to post. Then again, a few whack job Muslims could change my plans in a hurry. I hope at the end of the year I have a lot of great memories rather than a huge credit balance with Delta airlines. Oh well, it's not in my control so all I have to say is: