Starling Travel

May 25, 2015

A Shaded Chair by the Ocean

Filed under: Photos,Places To Visit — Laura Moncur @ 7:15 am

I took a picture on September 9, 2010. I have no idea where I was when I took it, but it looked like an ideal setting to me. It was two beach loungers with umbrellas right on the ocean’s edge. It was the perfect image of what I want from a vacation. Just a nice place to sit by the ocean with a little shade.

A Shaded Chair by the Ocean from Starling Travel

When it comes down to it, all I really need for a good vacation is a shaded chair by the ocean. Or the mountains. Or the lake. Or the forest. It doesn’t matter where in nature I am as long as I don’t have to hear the rush of traffic and the grind of construction.

There is a story by Ernest Hemingway called A Clean Well-Lighted Place. My whole life, I have been searching for this and I’ve only seen it in glimpses. Here is one of those glimpses: a shaded chair by the ocean.

February 24, 2015

Las Vegas Silhouette

Filed under: Nevada,Photos,Places To Visit — Laura Moncur @ 2:07 pm

I took this photo last August on our anniversary trip to Las Vegas. I have NO idea where I was standing when I took the photo, but I adore how it turned out.

Las Vegas Silhouette from Starling Travel

Sometimes when I feel like I need a vacation, I pull up my old photos and look at them, remembering my good times. It’s usually just barely enough for me to get back to work and perhaps plan a trip in the future.

January 28, 2015

Interstellar Orchard’s Intro to Travel Photography

Filed under: Photos — Laura Moncur @ 10:53 am

Travel Photography Tips from Interstellar OrchardIf you want to take great pictures when you’re traveling, Interstellar Orchard has some very good tips for you:

For me, a trip didn’t happen if I didn’t take pictures of it. If there isn’t a folder on my hard drive labeled with a date and place, then the trip will be forgotten within a year. I realize the limitation of my memory, especially for visual things, so I take tons of pictures, but none of them as lovely as hers. I’m so glad she posted this tutorial, especially about how to take pictures of your rig. So helpful!!

November 7, 2014

No Synonym for God Is So Perfect As Beauty

Filed under: Camping,Hiking,Photos — Laura Moncur @ 8:00 am

This quote about beauty reminded me why I love to go to the mountains.

No synonym for God is so perfect as Beauty. Whether as seen carving the lines of the mountains with glaciers, or gathering matter into stars, or planning the movements of water, or gardening - still all is Beauty! John Muir from The Quotations Page

It reads:

No synonym for God is so perfect as Beauty. Whether as seen carving the lines of the mountains with glaciers, or gathering matter into stars, or planning the movements of water, or gardening – still all is Beauty!

  • John Muir

This is why I go camping and hiking, to experience that overwhelming spiritual feeling of pure beauty. When I go too long between camping trips, my feet become eager to leave home behind and go in search of the mountains.

May 10, 2012

The World According to Charles W. Cushman 1938-1969

I love to travel and see parts of the world that are different than mine, but the photography collection of Charles W. Cushman allows me to travel not only all around the world, but through the past as well.

Charles Weever Cushman, amateur photographer and Indiana University alumnus, bequeathed approximately 14,500 Kodachrome color slides to his alma mater. The photographs in this collection bridge a thirty-two year span from 1938 to 1969, during which time he extensively documented the United States as well as other countries.

It was so lovely to look at all the old photographs! Here are some of my favorites. (Continue Reading…)

April 14, 2008

Encinitas, CA: Leucadia Sushi Bar

Filed under: California,Food,Photos — Laura Moncur @ 3:55 pm

Leucadia Sushi Bar

Every time we go to San Diego, we make sure we set aside time to visit Leucadia Sushi Bar. The best feature of the place is the conveyor belt and constant stream of sushi. I filmed a little clip of it back in 2007:

Click Here To See The Video

Download this video for your iPod

You pay based on plate prices. There is a price for each plate, you choose a plate from the conveyor belt and stack up the plates you eat. When it comes time to pay, they count up your plates and charge you for each one. Different colored plates indicate different prices.

At the end, I always spend less on sushi here than I do at any other sushi bar, even though I eat so much!

We LOVE Leucadia Sushi Bar and have a pet name for it: Sushi-Go-Round! I can’t wait to go back to California to eat there again!


Where: 996 N.Coast Hwy 101, Encinitas, CA 92024
Phone Number: (760)635-9312

Business Hours:
Closed on Monday Lunch: 11:30a.m.- 2:00p.m. (tue – fri)
Dinner:: 5:00p.m.- 9:00p.m. (tue – thu, sun) 5:00p.m. – 9:30p.m. (fri & sat)

May 2, 2007

Yellowstone Grizzly Bear Photos

Filed under: Photos,Places To Visit — Michael Moncur @ 5:00 am

Grizzly Bear (click for larger photo) Click any of the photos in this post to view the large photo (800 x 600) in a separate window.

There’s one sure way to spot a bear at Yellowstone National Park: look for a long line of cars parked at the side of one of the roads through the park. A bear that can be seen from the road will always draw a crowd.

Grizzly Bear (click for larger photo)

Last time we saw a bear at Yellowstone, it was about a hundred yards away in the woods, and there was no way to get a good photo. Some fellow tourists demonstrated their stupidity by walking much closer, but we stayed by the road and contented ourselves with some blurry photos.

This time we were lucky—the line of cars on the West Yellowstone-Madison road led us to two black bears grizzly bears, much closer to the road. They were across the river, which prevented any tourists from risking their lives. We were able to set up tripods and get a couple of decent pictures this time, along with Laura’s video.

Grizzly Bear (click for larger photo)

These appear to be Grizzly Bears, although we thought they were on the small side. Two of them were feeding on something (Bugs in a rotting log? A dead animal?) and they parted ways and walked in opposite directions along the river as we approached.

Update 05-02-07: I’ve added this map to show you approximately where we saw the bears. They were midway between the West Entrance and Madison Junction.

The red dot indicates where we saw the bears in Yellowstone.

Update 05-04-07: I initially identified these as black bears, but I’m pretty sure they are grizzlies. Learn how to tell the difference.

April 21, 2007

Sunset Over St. Michael’s Parish Church

Filed under: Photos — Laura Moncur @ 8:19 am

St. Michael’s Parish Church

This photo was taken by archangel_raphael and posted to Flickr. You can see all his photos here:

April 13, 2007

Travel From The Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest

Filed under: Photos,Places To Visit,Utah — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

The Smithsonian Magazine has posted the finalists for their photography contest. You can see the entries for the travel category here:

I always feel a sense of pride when something from Utah is featured. Here is “Sunrise in Canyonlands National Park” by Diane Kroupa from St. Louis, MO. Canyonlands National Park is in Southern Utah near Moab.

Sunrise in Canyonlands National Park by Diane Kroupa

Yes, my state is an exotic locale on par with worshippers in Taiwan and Buddhist photographers. Head on over the the Smithsonian website and see the rest of the beautiful photography submitted.

May 10, 2006

San Diego Wild Animal Park: Butterflies

Filed under: California,Photos — Michael Moncur @ 5:00 am

Every time we visit San Diego, we spend a day at the San Diego Zoo’s Wild Animal Park, a huge wildlife preserve 35 miles north of the Zoo. This park is like the opposite of a zoo—the animals are roaming through wide open spaces, while humans are confined to limited fenced areas.

Every year in spring they have thousands of butterflies in the Hidden Jungle, a large walk-through greenhouse. It’s certainly the most butterflies we’ve ever seen in one place—they even land on people. Here are a few of the many photos we took of these beautiful insects.





The annual Butterflies event ended May 7th. Be sure to catch it next year—it’s well worth waiting in line.

  • Address: 15500 San Pasqual Valley Road, Escondido, CA
  • Park Hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m
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