Thursday, October 11, 2007

Taipei, Taiwan - Day 4 & 5

Lots of Pictures today. Here is a picture of "Teddy Bear", who was going for a walk with his owner. The next picture is of a tree that was uprooted during Sunday's Typhoon.

The car was used by President Chiang Kai-shek's Limo when he was president of Taiwan. The big ball is called a Damper Baby. It is the weight that hangs in the middle of the Taipei 101 building.

It has been a very crazy couple of days. Yesterday, we toured Taipei 101. This is the tallest building in the world. After the tour of the building, we toured Taipei. Several of the places we visited included the Chiang Kai-shek memorial building, a famous temple and the old town market. At the market we saw several items including fish, snake, turtles, videos and several other fun items.

The building is of the Chiang Kai-shek memorial building. The picture if of Ronald Reagan and Chiang Kai-shek.

Today, we kicked off the morning with breakfast and a meeting with several people that we have worked with before at the American Institute of Trade (AIT). During the meeting, we felt a minor earthquake! After meeting with the U.S. officials, we went to a top 10 lunch resturant where we ate pork and shrimp dumplings (very good). We then went to a supermarket where there were lots of different fruits and vegetables. one of my favorite fruits that we have tried is Dragon Fruit. It looks like a white kiwifruit. After our tour of the supermarkets, we came back to the hotel.

Pictures of Frogs and snakes that we saw at the super markets.

Tomorrow, I will be giving a presentation to over 20 representatives. We are going to update them of California apples and then have a chance to answer their questions. We will then pack our suitcases, have dinner and then catch a late airplane ride back to the U.S.

See you tomorrow (Friday),

God Bless,


Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Taipei, Taiwan - Day 3

These are pictures of the streets of Taipei. As you can see, there are lots of scooters and yes...they have McDonald's!

Today, we had the opportunity to meet with a couple of companies who buy apples from California. After the meetings, we toured a company that receives California apples. After the tour, we had dinner at a fish restaurant.

Today, Taiwan is celebrating its National Day (like Fourth of July for the U.S.). We will be touring the city today (everything is closed). One of the places we will be touring is the Taipei 101. This is the tallest building in the world. We are planning to have lunch there and maybe go to the top (101 stories).

Until tomorrow,

God Bless,


P.S. Pray for Grandma Trish!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Taipei, Taiwan - Day 1 & 2

This is a picture of the plane we rode on to Taiwan. This is a very big plane and has two stories (see the windows on the top and bottom?)

I arrived into Taipei, Taiwan today (Monday at 7:30 pm). We were suppose to leave for Taiwan on Sunday at 1:00am, however, due to a typhoon, the flight did not leave until 2:30 pm. After a 13 hour uneventful flight, we touched down. At 8:00 pm, it was 84 degrees and a few sprinkles. In short, hot and humid. Tomorrow, we begin our meetings. Will keep you posted,

God Bless,


(Picture of "Doc" and Dad waiting in the airport)

Friday, October 5, 2007

San Quentin Days 1&2

Hey There Munchkin:

We are in a lot of meetings today and have met some very interesting people. The bad news we haven't gone out anywhere so our only pictures are of the Koi fish that are in the pond inside our hotel (no buildings). The fish are about 2 feet long - Grandma will show you how big that is. We have a long day today and will be home tonight. I hope you are treating grandma well and give moose a hug for us.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

CHILE - Day 4&5

This is a picture of where I sat for the meeting. Each country had their own flag, name plate and a translator so we could understand the other countries.

Yesterday was a full day of meetings. After the meetings, we had dinner where we sang songs and danced. Let's just say...every country has a song that brings out the "best" in them.

I am currently getting ready to get on a bus to head back to where we will catch our airplane. I will be leaving this evening and will be back in Fresno tomorrow afternoon.

Have a good day at school and tell Mom and Moose, I will be home soon!

God Bless,


Sunday, September 23, 2007

CHILE - Day 3

The first two pictures were taken in the meseum. The one on the left is a picture of one of several cars. It is a famous Chilian race car driver's ride and raced at the Indy 500. The next picture is a dinosaur bone (actually this is its head). The last two pictures were taken at the hotel where we rode horses. The first picture is of my horse. The second is the cowboy that taught us how to ride and lead us up into the mountains and around the lake.

It was a blast today. After Breakfast, the world kiwifruit delegation met and begun giving its country reports. After a full morning and half of the afternoon, several discussions focused on how we could work together to move more kiwifruit in the world.

After the meeting, our group toured a meseum next to the hotel. There was an incredible amount of artificats, including: fossils, dinosaur bones, old guns, gold, silver, treasure chests, indian cloths, cars, trains, farm equipment and the actual Chile constitution.

After the tour, we loaded up on a bus and went to a house that has been converted into a hotel. The house was originally built in the early 1600s, before the U.S. was even a colony. I met a real cowboy and rode for the first time a horse. We took a ride on a horse up the mountain and around a lake. After we returned to the stables, we were entertained by several dancers. The dancers showed us the "napkin dance", and it is a very traditional dance in Chile. After the dancing and singing, we had dinner, boarded the bus and then returned to the hotel.

Tomorrow will be another busy day of meetings, followed by our farewell dinner. On Tuesday, we will board the bus and visit some growing areas before traveling to the airport to come home.

It has been a great trip thus far, however, I am looking forward in coming home soon. Congratulate mom for her win in football! Also, give Jordan a big hug and tell him to be good in school tomorrow, and have fun in dance!

God Bless,


Saturday, September 22, 2007

CHILE - Day 2

Pictures of our train. The third picture is of the "killer watch dog" I met, we was very friendly and reminded me a lot of Dub! The last picture is of the horses that pulled our buggy!

Another busy day...but lots of fun! We began with a bus ride to Santa Cruz. After reaching the city we took a steam engine train and toured the country side. On the train, they sang music, served cheese and wine. After we finished the train tour, we went to a winery. This is a big place where they grow grapes and then make the grapes into wine. We got to tour the vineyard by horse and buggy. After the tour, the tour guide placed us into four groups where we made our own wine. It was France, Italy, New Zealand and the U.S. as different teams. You will be pleased to know that we took second and barley lost to the New Zealand team. Oh Well, next year!
After our wine making, we had dinner on top of the hill, where we learned lots about the first indians of Chile. This included learning about Easter Island, several other tribes and finally a chance to look through several telescopes at the stars. We concluded the evening with a dinner at the top of the mountain on top of nearly 2,000 acres of vines.

Tomorrow will be a busy day. We begin our two day meeting sessions and will work together with the other countries to understand the global kiwi industry.

Congratulations on your big win and your goal! You did a great job...keep up the great work! Also, tell Moose he did good too at his game.

Give mom a big hug...until tomorrow,

God Bless,


Friday, September 21, 2007


The first two pictures are inside the President's Palace. This is similar to the U.S. White House. It is where the President works. The Bull is a statue inside the court yard. The other picture of one of several police officers that guard the palace. The third picture is one of the orginal cannons used when the Spanish came to Chile. The last picture is a few of the dancers that performed for us (yes they are real cowboys)!

Crazy day today. I left yesterday afternoon from Fresno and arrived this morning at 7:45 am. What a beautiful sight. There are very tall mountains boarding the east of this coastal country. What is amazing is this country is 5,000 miles long and on average only 80 miles wide. It is longer to drive from the top of the country all the way to the bottom than it is to drive from California to Washington D.C. Pretty amazing!

After I arrived at the hotel, I met several other kiwi growers from around the world, including: Italy, Spain, France, New Zealand, Korea, Chile and of course USA. After having lunch with the group, we toured downtown Santiago, the Capitol of Chile. It is a city rich in history. In fact the famous "Easter Island" statues come from this country (they look like Dum Dum, Gum Gum, from Night at the Meseum).

After the tour, we changed and went to dinner where we were entertained by several different dancers from around the country. Several of these dances included cowboys, Indians, and several Hawaii dances (from Chile and brought to the islands).

Tomorrow, we wake up early and we depart for Santa Cruz, Chile. We will be taking an old steam train to see several areas of the country side. We will then go to the Colchagua Museum and then have a couple of group activities in the evening.

Until tomorrow, have a great soccer your best and give your brother and mom a kiss and a hug.

God Bless,


Friday, August 24, 2007


Weather has been terrible here in Chicago. Yesterday, I faced my first tornado watch with lightning and thunder pounding the city. Today, off and on rain with more thunder this evening. Very crazy weather.

However, even with the weather, I managed to sneak out of the hotel and visit a couple of stores...including the Candy store. After tasting some yummy treats (sorry no golden tickets in this candy), I was able to visit the Disney store and the Apple store (of course).

Today, after our breakfast meetings, I was able to swing by Bentley Gold Cost. Oh, yea the cars were awesome!

Which car is your favorite?

I have to run and catch another meeting in a few minutes, but wanted to check in. I leave tomorrow morning. Until then...

God Bless,


Wednesday, August 22, 2007


Meetings...Meetings...Meetings, Today was a day of meetings. The only thing I got to see in Chicago was this statue of a man holding an umbrella waving at a taxi. Lots and lots of meetings. Tomorrow, the conference begins and I will be able to sit in more meetings, meetings and more meetings.

Not much to report today except that I went to lots of meetings, meetings and more meetings. I think you get the picture.

Tell mom and Moose hi! Hope everything is going well and I miss you!

God Bless,


Tuesday, August 21, 2007


Greetings again from Chicago. I love this city! Lots to do, good food, nice people, and wonderful atmosphere. Tell mom, I saw lots of "nice buildings".

Today, we left Fresno at 7:30 and flew to Dallas, Texas. From Texas we flew to Chicago, Illinois. We then took a taxi to our hotel and I went to dinner. It was great. After dinner, my group went to the top of the John Hancock building. It is the second tallest building in Chicago. The picture to the left is me in my room and a stick that was in my drink. The "drink stick" is an image of the building that we were in. We had a drink on the 96th floor of this building. That is 96 of your schools stacked on top of each other...a long way up.

Tomorrow, I have a meeting where we will talk about apples. Have a good day and be good in school. Keep reading your books and fill out your journal. Give Moose and mommy a big hug for me!

God Bless,


Thursday, July 19, 2007

Last Day in China

Today is the last day in China. Yesterday was lots of traveling. We began the day with a cruise around a lake followed by a visit to where tea is made. After tasting some delicious tea, we toured several temples where people pray. We finished the day with a night cruise of the skyline.

(Fountain at the tea shop; right statue at the temples)

Today was a light day. We began touring the walkway near the river. We then took the bus to where they Chinese make silk carpets. After the carpet factory, we toured the downtown market place followed by dinner. Overall, the trip was exciting and gave us a new experience coupled with some much needed vacation time. Mommy and I look forward in seeing you tomorrow!

(worker making one of the hand made silk rugs; right three goats at the entrance of the rug shop)

Until then, God Bless,


Monday, July 16, 2007

China - Day 5

Today we flew to Shanghai and then boarded a bus to travel to Tiger Hill Pagoda in Suzhou. The Tiger Hill Pagoda is used for Buddha monks to pray. (The picture with mommy in front shows the Pagoda in the background). Throughout this garden area, several statues of dragons are carved. It is a very beautiful place.

After a tour of the garden, we toured the city by bus and finished the day having dinner at a place that serves fish, pork, beef, rice and several other yummy treats! One of the pictures shows a couple of fish that are swimming around in their tanks at the restaurant.

I hope you are having fun with Grandma Trish and Papa Silly.

God Bless,


Sunday, July 15, 2007

China - Day 3

Today was a very packed day. We started with a tour to Tiananmen Square. This is one of the largest open government areas in the world. Thousands of people come here to read about their government. Next we went to the Forbidden City, which is where the Emperor of China use to live. This City is very big and has gold and handcraft carvings throughout the Palace.

We then went for a ride on bicycles or rickshaws where we had a real Chinese prepared lunch with a family. They prepared several dishes that included: beef, potatoes, broccoli, rice and watermelon. It was very good.
After lunch we traveled to a jewelry shop where we saw how pearls are made. Did you know that pearls come from oysters?
We then walked to the Heavenly Temple where the Emperor of China used to pray for a good harvest. This temple is very tall and has beautiful decorations throughout the temple.

We finished the day with dinner at a famous duck restaurant. We ate duck four different ways. We even had duck in tortillas. The food was very good!

Tomorrow we leave travel to a different city called Shanghais. This city is where a lot of trading occurs. We will take a plane tomorrow at lunch and stay the night. This is the halfway point of our trip. We leave for the U.S. in four days. Keep being good and we will talk to you soon.

1) Fist picture is of the guard dog at lunch. 2) Second Picture is of a golden pearl. It is very expensive. 3) This is the duck that stands outside of where we had dinner.
God Bless,


Saturday, July 14, 2007

China - Day 2

Day Two was a blast! We started the day with a big breakfast and then took a bus to the Emperor's Summer Palace. This is a 700-acre property that includes a man-made lake. Following the Summer Palace, we went to a jade factory. Jade is a very beautiful and precious stone. It is the second hardest mineral just behind a diamond. We were able to see how they hand carve these beautiful gems.

After the Jade factory, Mom and I got our exercise by climbing the Great Wall of China. The great wall was built over 2,000 years ago and stretches to nearly 4,000 miles. It is so large; you can see the structure from space.

Following the Great Wall, we had lunch and learned how China makes the beautiful copper vases. These are also, hand crafted and painted. These beautiful pieces take lots of time and patience. Next we traveled to the Dragon Valley, where we took a boat ride through the gorges. The sight was incredible!

After a long day of walking, we finished by eating a Chinese buffet and watched several Chinese acrobats perform tricks on stage. They spun plates on sticks, roller-skated, jumped through hoops and performed lots of jumps and spins!

Hope everything is going well. Be good to grandma and papa.

God Bless,


Pic 1 - Flowers at the Palace; Pic 2 - Mom at the Great Wall; Pic 3 - The Dragon at Dragon Valley; Pic 4 - Chinese dancers