Category Archives: Tom’s Blog Main

Expert advice: See a bear, make some noise




GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK — Bill Stiver, a wildlife biologist at Great Smoky Mountains National Park, wants me to do something that goes against every outdoor-loving fiber of my body. If I’m lucky enough to see a black bear, the … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Signs for Life in a Chinese Canyon




WENCHENG COUNTY, China – The forest resembled Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and the waterfalls could have been in Yosemite, but the signs along the trail were pure China. They told us a bit about where we were, and despite … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Super Hiking above Wenzhou




WENZHOU, China – Most Americans who have even heard of this city of 9 million know it as a manufacturing and export city, but it is trying to enhance its leisure visitor credentials and has one attraction of major proportions. … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Dancing in the Daylight




ZHANGYE, China — If you’d told me a month ago that I’d wake up one morning in the middle of China and shoot photos of a plump, matronly woman wearing a white mask, red shoes, red gloves, and a red jacket … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Leave a comment

Ducking Donald and Hillary




The People’s Republic of China shielded me from 95 percent of the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign’s final three weeks. For that, I am grateful to the Chinese. A business trip took me to Wenzhou, a city you’ve probably never heard … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged | 1 Comment

Not One Darn Fish! (But I Had a Great Time)




MAMMOTH LAKES, California (July 2016) – Labeling a totally unproductive fishing trip a good experience conjures up memories of Michigan State football coach Duffy Daugherty, who said, “A tie is like kissing your sister.” It’s totally counterintuitive, but that’s still … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where Mucking Is a Competitive Sport




TONOPAH, Nevada – A chance conversation led to my meeting a mucking champion, and that’s no typo. It happened in the desert town of Tonopah, Nevada, which is in the middle of nowhere between Las Vegas and Reno. Me: “I saw … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Big Mouse, Little Mouse in Southern California




SANTA ANA, California – There’s more than one mouse to visit when you go to Southern California. The internationally recognized Big Mouse, of course, is named Mickey, and he’s in Anaheim. The not-nearly-as-well-known Little Mouse is in Santa Ana and … Continue reading






Posted in Main Page, Tom's Blog Main, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Touches of Disney Magic on a Dreary Day




ANAHEIM, Calif. – Even if you arrive at the Disneyland Resort on a chilly, drizzly afternoon, it’s easy to encounter magic touches that brighten the day. When the bellman at the Grand Californian Hotel detected my anxiety about his putting … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged , | Leave a comment

To Market, to Market in Sacramento




SACRAMENTO, California – In a state known for celebrities, food is the real celebrity in the capital city, Sacramento – especially on Sunday mornings and despite the fact movie star governors aren’t unusual. The reason is the Sacramento Certified Farmers’ … Continue reading






Posted in Tom's Blog Main | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment