Backpacking, coffee and conversations!

What’s up everyone?!  I am writing today from one of my favorite cafes on the westside of Cleveland, Erie Island Coffee Company.

Best coffee on the westside!
Best coffee on the westside!

There aren’t too many independent coffee shops (or cafes as I mostly call them) on the westside anymore.  It really bummed out my friends and I when a cafe called Caribou Coffee closed down about a year and a half ago.  Caribou Coffee was a great coffee shop that was only found in the midwest and northeast. (not exactly local but regional?)  They had the coziest cabin like feel complete with fireplaces!  I miss Caribou tremendously and their Ho Ho White Mint Mocha that I’d always get at Christmas time!!!  So now when I am out and about in Rocky River I always stop at Erie Island for some great black coffee.  I rarely order a foo foo coffee and don’t like cream or sugar in my cup of joe!  I seriously have a deep affinity for the coffee beans 😀  I swear I should roast my own beans but hey…  I want to take a roasting class just to learn about the different types of beans and the whole process of making a great cup of coffee.  When I lived in San Francisco there were great coffee shops everywhere!  One of my favorites was Blue Bottle.  I’m salivating right now just thinking of their coffee.  😛   Philz Coffee is another great one out there.  At Philz you can choose from a couple of dozen different types of coffee and they single cup brew it for you right on the spot!  It is heavenly.  I would kill for a coffee shop like Philz here in the Cleveland area.  (Westside please!?..haha)

Anyways I want to change the subject for a minute!  I NEVER thought that I could have so much to say on a blog.  I’m sitting here thinking, “Where do I start?”  There are so many things that I want to talk about and get information back on.  My brain is running wild with all sorts of topics.  I get inspired daily when I am at work.  I meet all sorts of people and have great conversations with them.  I also belong to an amazing backpacking group filled with all sorts of characters with crazy stories..The Hopeless Wanderers!

The Hopeless Wanderers!
The Hopeless Wanderers!

Speaking of those characters I am heading out on a fall backing backing trip to Monongahela National Forest in wild and wonderful West Virginia!  I can’t wait to get lost in the woods, cook my meals over a campfire and wake up to a beautiful view outside my tent!  I love being outside, as I have said before, and I jump at the chance to go backpacking whenever I can!  The autumn colors are going to be radiant!

My view atop Mt. Rogers in Virginia...bliss
My view atop Mt. Rogers in Virginia…bliss

I desperately need new hiking shoes, however I am going to try to get one more hike out of my current pair of Moab Mid Waterproof Merrells.  They are a great day hiking shoe but not the best for a multi-day trip.  I also need a new pack.  I bought mine years ago before they made them gender specific.  I am shorty McShortesen and my current pack takes up half my body!  It is a great Mountainsmith pack that has totally stood the test of time.  I have used this pack for over 10 years and it has been all across the country with me.  I will absolutely keep it as a keepsake!  Maybe build a shrine to it…LOL! Just kidding 😉  I’m not a total gear head as it is exspensive!  My dream is to be a field tester for outdoor gear companies.  I not a pro, but hey Jane Goodall wasn’t a pro when she ventured to Africa!

On that note I have to go “get lost” in my favorite park before I head over to my sister’s house for some twin time and of course some “E” time!!! (“E” is my 22 month niece)  My sister and her family are home now and busy nesting with their now family of 5!  Oh my stars…how life grows in love everyday!


“Give what you have.  To someone, it may be better than you dare to think.”

~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Questions for you…

Do you camp or backpack?

If so what are your favorite spots?

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