Monday, May 21, 2012



June 11, 2012: HEY - I got my About Me page up today!

Update, 6th August: Just a quick note to let ya'll know I've purchased the RV, got it fixed up and mostly packed up, waiting on mobile broadband USB modem to arrive in mail and finish up a few other little things that must be taken care of before I hit the road.  Hoping to get going in the next week or so - I've got about a dozen or so posts all written up just need to get them posted, but currently have virtually no internet till the modem arrives.  I'll have lots of reading for ya'll to do as soon as possible!

Friday, March 6, 1992

Postcard, New Zealand, apx 6th March 1992

Postcard from me to my family, from New Zealand, apx 6th March 1992, postmarked Auckland, New Zealand

Hi Everybody! I feel like I struck gold! New Zealand is Fantastic!! It's absolutely beautiful, mountains & trees everywhere, even the cities are nice - everybody says "hello" as they walk past - I'm working for "Mt. Tabor Community Trust" - they help teach self-sufficiency to mildly retarded and deaf people - I'm learning sign language! Sometimes I'm at their farm in the country or at their house in Auckland - it's great!
Don't worry about this, it's a promo postcard I picked up (nice, eh?) cheaper than the usual. But if you want you can write to the addresses if you want info about N.Z.  My address is:
Laura DiFiore
Poste Restante
Main Post Office
Auckland, New Zealand
Love, Laura

Commentary, 2nd January 2012: The front of this postcard was covered with the mold that was spreading through so many of my possessions in Calhan, Colorado, after the disastrous pipe freeze, so unfortunately I was unable to scan it. 

Sunday, December 1, 1991

Postcard from me to my family, Ayers Rock, Uluru, Australia, 1991

Postcard sent from Australia, from me to my family, 1991.

Transcription: Hi everybody! I'm in the middle of nowhere, looking at this big, red rock! It's a bit over a mile long! I climbed up half-way - gave up! Too steep! Of course, all four of the guys I'm currently traveling with made it - they're not teasing me too badly about quitting! It's HOT, DRY and RED here - never thought I'd actually WISH for humidity again! "Hi" to all - love and miss you - Laura

Commentary, 2nd January 2012: Postcard sent to my family from me from Ayers Rock, Australia, in late 1991.  Not sure of exact date, and the postmark is faded too much to read.  This might have been sent in early 1992, actually - but posting it with date of 1st December 1991 for now.

What I don't mention in the postcard is why I gave up half-way up the rock.  As I was slowly slogging my way up the rock, a group of drunk tourists came racing and barreling up the rock, and two of them accidentally knocked me over.  I slid about 30 feet down the rock, causing some pretty severe road-rash (well, in this case, rock-rash!) along the outside of my left leg.  I was so pissed because the drunks just kept on racing up the rock; they didn't stop and help me up, or even just wave at me and say oops, sorry about that! or anything!  I slowly limped my way back down the rock, bleeding all along the left side of my leg, with some more blood oozing out of the outer upper left arm where I had some minor road rash.  The guys I was traveling with had our very limited and precious water, so I had no water to try to clean my wounds out with me.  I painfully made my way back to the base of the rock, where an elderly couple in a camper helped me clean the dust, dirt, and gravel out of my wounds.  The lady was so nice, she even gave me a clean pair of socks and insisted I throw away the ones I had on, which were now quite bloody.  

Sunday, October 20, 1991

Airplane Ticket, New Zealand, Australia, Hawaii, USA, 1991-1992

Airline ticket, from when I traveled from Los Angeles, USA to Australia, New Zealand, and Hawaii, from late 1991 to late 1992.

20th October 1991 to 27th February 1992 in Australia
27th February 1992 to 25th May in New Zealand
May 25th to September 11th 1992 in Hawaii (was supposed to fly back to the mainland on 5th September but Hurricane Iniki interrupted that plan!)

3rd January 2012: Shortly after I returned to the United States from Haiti, I hit the road again, this time to Australia and New Zealand, with a stint in Hawaii before I returned back to the mainland of America.  You see where this ticket - an open-ended ticket good for one year, something hard to get anymore! - is purchased with British Pounds and states that it cost US equivalent $2,798?  Well, no, it didn't cost me that much - it actually cost me just under US$550.  When I was traveling in Europe, I discovered the wonderful world of the airline ticket wholesalers based in London, who using the vagaries of currency exchange values and bulk purchasing can get you tickets for mere pennies on the dollars, provided you weren't picky about what dates you flew.  At least they used to - not so sure if that happens anymore. 

Saturday, October 12, 1991

Postcard from me to my family, Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas, 12th October 1991

Postcard from me to my family, Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, Houston, Texas, 12th October 1991

Oct. 12, '91
Hi Everybody!
After having been to places like Cape Canaveral, this was a letdown. And Houston is this big, ugly, soulless city - awful - but the hostel is the BEST - so comfortable & friendly! Went to a fantastic laser light show at the planetarium, to Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" - made Houston worth visiting!
Love, Laura

Commentary, 2nd January 2012: Seriously, that laser light show at the Planetarium in Houston was the best I've ever been to, before and since.  One thing I don't mention in the post card was the fact that there were people in the audience lighting up and handing around marijuana joints - ya, I partook, might as well have after all, I'd have gotten a contact high regardless, the smoke was so thick!

I'm almost embarrassed by what I wrote about Houston here, about it being ugly and soulless, but at the time, it really did feel and seem that way.  Houston was still recovering from the massive real estate crash of the 1980s, entire skyscraper buildings were empty or nearly empty... I remember walking down the streets of Houston in the early afternoon and finding the sidewalks remarkably lightly trafficked; after 6:00pm the streets were completely empty, a total ghost-town.  I've not been back to Houston since, but I have friends who live there and report that downtown Houston is much more lively now.

Wednesday, October 9, 1991

Postcard from me to my family, dated 9th October, 1991, postmarked New Orleans, Louisiana 10th October 1991.

Oct. 9 - 91
Address until April 4, 1992
L. Difiore
c/o Involvement Volunteers
P.O. Box 218
Port Melbourne 3207
Victoria, Australia
Hi Everybody! Walked around the French Quarter, ate Beignets at Cafe du Monde, going to Preservation Hall tomorrow - birthplace of Jazz! Weather is terrific - finally! Next stop: Houston
Love and miss you all,

Thursday, October 3, 1991

Postcard from me to my family, Universal Studios, Orlando, Florida, 3rd October 1991

Postcard from me to my family, Universal Studios, Orlando, Florida, 3rd October 1991. Postmarked Tallahassee, Florida 9th October 1991.

Hi Everyone! This place is COOL! Saw "Hi Honey I'm Home" being taped, traveled in time in a Delorean, was in a subway car destroyed by King Kong, got attacked in the shower at the Bates Motel, bled all over the stage; all in a day's work, eh? Oh - flew with the Jetsons, too!
Love, Laura