Streets of Cairo (Roads Of Egypt, too) - Published August 20th, 2009
Masada, Israel: Published September 3rd, 2009: In this travel journal, Blackthorn shares with us his trip to Masada, an important part of Israel's history.
The Roads Of Delhi: Published September 2009: Blackthorn shares with us his thoughts about his trip to Delhi, India - and how the poverty he witnessed affected him.
Angkor Thom and the Temple of Bayon, Cambodia: Published October, 2009: "Last year I got to fulfill a lifelong dream when I visited the temples of Cambodia. These temples were mostly erected between the tenth and twelfth centuries."
"The Temples of Abu Simbel and Philae" - Published October 10, 2009: Blackthorn virtually travels back in time to visit the coastal and island temples of the pharos: The Temples of Abu Simbel,
Petra, The First Time - October 28, 2009: "Petra is a city literally sculpted out of cliffs in a deep, winding canyon in Jordan. My wife and I visited this incredible city in 2006 on a combination tour of Israel and Jordan...
“Outlaw Tour of the Great Wall of China” - Published December 2009: Blackthorn shares with us his illegal trip to the great wall of China to see parts that aren't open to the public or tourists
"Eight days in Istanbul" by Blackthorn. On my taxi ride from the airport to my hotel I was surprised by how much Istanbul looked like any city in America, with playgrounds, buses and modern buildings. Then, among the modern streets and cars I got my first view of historic significance when I saw this aqueduct from the Roman era, known as the Valens aqueduct..."
I was born into a family that never stayed in one place long. My first trip was when I was 9 months old, when we left my birth place of Texas to move to California. As we moved around I attended 4 different elementary schools, 3 junior high schools and 3 high schools.
I was deeply affected by the television show Then Came Bronson, about a man who traveled the United States searching for meaning. I knew I wanted to do the same thing as soon as I was legally able. Graduating high school when I was 17 years old, I hit the road immediately in a $300 car. In the first 15 months out of high school I went as far north as Montana, as far east as Ohio and as far south as Phoenix, Arizona. I found that I could get free food if I worked as a bus boy/dishwasher, so that was what I did in most places. When that kind of work wasn’t available I did whatever was available. Once I worked installing duct work for air conditioning systems, but when necessary I also worked as a janitor or in a car wash.
At the age of 19 I settled down a while to learn a trade, going into carpentry. During a construction strike in 1974 I rode a 360 Honda from San Jose, CA to Victoria, BC, Canada. The trip took 2 weeks and I kept a diary including a detailed record of my expenditures, totaling $100.34. I had kept the cost down by sleeping along side the road wherever I could hide my bike (under a camo tarp) and roll out my sleeping bag. For food I bought cans of pork and beans, usually. Occasionally I ate in fast food places.
At the age of 22 I took a temporary job offer of building a church in rural South Dakota, just for a change of scenery. Two months later I was back in California again working at a regular job.
My traveling took a downturn when I got married at age 23 because my first wife had no interest in traveling. That marriage ended when I was 39, but by then I was a single dad raising 2 kids. Finally at the age of 44 I was able to get back on the road and went on my first intercontinental trip, to Ireland. Two years later I made my second trip to the same place, and have gone back to Ireland many times since then.
Finally in 2005, married again, now to a woman who loves to travel as much as I do, I was finally able to get serious about traveling. Since then I have visited Mexico, Belize, India, Israel (three times), Egypt (twice), Jordan (twice), China (twice), the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia, Bangladesh, France and Algeria and I have plane tickets for Uganda next January. Life is good.