Fun Friday: Secluded Getaways

We are staying at a Ryokan in the woods on a river and it is beautiful and peaceful and about as far away from NYC and work as can be. We had dinner in robes last night and slept on tatami mats. And I’ve been reading more and writing less. All of which is a very good thing for me and our family. I will upload a photo of this place if I can get a decent internet connection. That in and of itself is a feature and not a bug of this place.


So in the spirit of fun friday, where do you all go to find seclusion, peace, and solitude? Post a picture with your comment if you can.

#Blogging On The Road

Comments (Archived):

  1. Chris O'Donnell

    I go camping or hiking – usually someplace where I can’t even get a cell signal, let alone 3G or Internet access. Here is a picture from the trail we hit on Black Friday.

    1. fredwilson

      that link isnt working for me

    2. Teren Botham

      Nice.. this has to be somewhere around Calif ??

      1. Chris O'Donnell

        Sky Meadows State Park – eastern side of the Appalachians in Northern VA.

    3. Anne Libby

      I love the AT up in the White Mountains. (And have a fond memory of staying in one of the AMC huts, hope to do that again someday.)

      1. JLM

        .I have walked sections of the AT and vow to do it all God willing.I love hiking in the mountains whether in the Rockies or the Smokies..

        1. Anne Libby

          I hope you will do it!Bill Bryson’s *A Walk in the Woods* — have you read it? A fun book about one man’s journey on the AT.

  2. Matt

    Riding a motorcycle! Hopefully in the Adirondacks but anywhere outside the city will do.

    1. fredwilson


    2. awaldstein

      I rode for a few years. Been a long time but this brings back the space that only a bike on the road carries with it.

  3. karen_e

    Wonderful, inspiring post! Bravo, bravissimo, way to get off the grid.

    1. fredwilson

      sort of

  4. Siminoff

    That looks amazing. Japan really is so cool and so different.

  5. William Mougayar

    It’s great that you’ve escaped the fast paced vacation you started in Tokyo. You hit it hard arriving there, so hopefully this has a slower tempo.Have you had your kaiseki yet? It’s very rare to find authentic kaiseki here, although I’ve had it a couple of times.For a bit of peace, there’s the corner on our deck. It’s very quiet and serene, with trees around, and I often go there to think. The wi-fi barely reaches it. It’s too dark for a pic now πŸ™‚

    1. fredwilson

      We had kaiseki in robes last night at the ryokan

  6. Teren Botham

    Fred, Wonder how NY looks like for you after having spent time in that setting..Anyone in your family homesick yet ?

    1. fredwilson

      We all are. Most of all my teenage son who misses his friends and girlfriend. But absence makes the heart grow stronger.

      1. Teren Botham

        and fonder, nonetheless πŸ™‚

      2. Wavelengths

        I have found that when I travel like this, after the first week I start to stop being “from somewhere” and I start being where I am. I quit looking for the local grocery or missing my convenient fast food, and I feel far more comfortable with the local customs. The words for “Hello” and “Thank you” come easily to my tongue. After another week or two, when I get back to the US I will feel like a foreigner in my own country, and I’ll have to acclimate again.I love that we can adjust and start to merge with a completely different culture. Someday your son will thank you.

      3. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

        I donno whether u r going to read this comment … but still wanted to make it.I was thinking about this comment yesterday evening when my son (10-year old) started complaining “I would have played with my friends in the street … why did you bring me to this exhibition”But I am damn sure your/mine son as well … will talk about these days to their old friends when they reach their 40’s … ‘ha those were golden days when my dad did this … and that’.I told my son the same thing and he gave me look like “what 40 and what an idiot”.

  7. jason wright

    in my dreams i find seclusion, peace, and solitude.

    1. Donna Brewington White


      1. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

        I can see the photo…can’t you? :-).

  8. kirklove

    The Ramble in Central Park. Every Weekend. I’m lucky.

    1. awaldstein

      You and I both. Very nice.

    2. Donna Brewington White

      Now on my list of places to visit in NYC although it will probably look different by then.

      1. kirklove

        It looks great 365 to me.

  9. Trish Fontanilla

    My company is in a co-working space and this is a pic of where I go for solitude during the work day. I suppose a perk of being a woman in tech is there are never any lines for the bathroom? (Notice how it’s dark, the light turned on when I walked in since no one’s been there in awhile.) πŸ˜€

    1. anne weiler

      I’ve been known to do that at tech conferences, especially if I’m speaking.

    2. Donna Brewington White

      Right after leaving corporate (and a private office) to work for a recruiting firm — I sat in a bullpen with a bunch of guys. After getting over the shock I grew to love the energy — but the restroom saved me many days!

  10. EmilSt

    Trpeica – a small fishing village on Ohrid lake in Macedonia (with 365 Churches and Monasteries around the lake, protected by Unesco). On 800 m above sea level, sorounded by mountains. That’s my spiritual sanctuary…

    1. EmilSt

      Don’t know where the photos disappeared in the original post…

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Hopefully, you can add those back in — that sounds amazing!!!

        1. EmilSt

          I tried twice, from iPhone. Hopefully this will work… from Ohrid in Washington Posthttp://www.washingtonpost.c…

          1. Donna Brewington White

            Ah, there it is. Gorgeous.

          2. Wavelengths

            I’m there already! Hope to get my physical body there soon!

    2. fredwilson


    3. ShanaC


    4. Wavelengths

      Ah … Someday I want to ask you if you will help me visit. I know I have a few pilgrimages left in me, and I’d like to make this one.

      1. EmilSt

        Any time. It will be my pleasure. And honor.

  11. dovcohn

    This week I am getting away from it all by going underwater. I find SCUBA to be an extraordinary stress reliever, because, while doing it, ALL of your attention must be on your activity and your surroundings. It is virtually impossible to multi-tas or think about any thing other than the beauty of the ocean while you are diving. It is a beautiful surrounding that forces you into the present with unbelievable sights and experiences.

    1. awaldstein

      Cool..used to be my thing big time.Nothing like breaking the surface for entering a different space with different rules.

    2. Wavelengths

      I took up climbing for just that reason. No multitasking. Just being in the Now.

  12. anne weiler

    The woods and the mountains.

  13. awaldstein

    Love this question. My pleasure to answer…Often:-Sitting in front of the big Pollock at MoMa. Best seat for contemplation in NYC.-Central Park. A natural wonder, man made.Couple of times a year:-Tulum. It ain’t what it was 5-10 years ago but it gets me in the zone like nowhere else I can get to regularly.

    1. fredwilson

      I also love Tulum

    2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      That painting is absorbing…the more I look at it … it reflects ‘caught in the chaos’

      1. awaldstein

        Pollock cracked it all open and spoke to many, myself included. I’ve been looking at this painting for years. Still find myself going to sit in front of it often.The beauty of a city like NYC is that a painting in a museum becomes a destination in itself. A part of life. I’m sure I”m not the exception.

        1. Dave Pinsen

          A post you and @kidmercury might enjoy for different reasons (“Abstract Impressionism and the CIA”) talks about the role the CIA had in promoting Jackson Pollock. A couple of excerpts:[Frances Stonor Saunders:]”Regarding Abstract Expressionism, I’d love to be able to say that the CIA invented it just to see what happens in New York and downtown SoHo tomorrow!” [former CIA officer Donald Jameson] joked. “But I think that what we did really was to recognise the difference. It was recognised that Abstract Expressionism was the kind of art that made Socialist Realism look even more stylised and more rigid and confined than it was. And that relationship was exploited in some of the exhibitions. To pursue its underground interest in America’s lefty avant-garde, the CIA had to be sure its patronage could not be discovered. “Matters of this sort could only have been done at two or three removes,” Mr Jameson explained, “so that there wouldn’t be any question of having to clear Jackson Pollock, for example, or do anything that would involve these people in the organisation.[Steve Sailer:] Basically, this was the kind of painting that the American ruling class, circa 1945-1964, liked.Their wives in Darien found it fashionable and their cousins bought it for the lobbies of their corporate headquarters. It was a new sort of imperial art for a new sort of empire. Rather than an in-your-face colossal statue of Emperor Ozymandias, this imperial art was depersonalized (an asset in the global twilight struggle for the allegiance of peoples who all looked different), cool, enigmatic. Rather than overpower the spectator, it undermined the viewer’s self-confidence[…]Somebody with a lot of money and power caused this enormous canvas of drips to be displayed here. But why? What do they know that I don’t know? If they can pull this off, what else can they do? What can’t they do? They look like they are going to win, so wouldn’t it be smarter for me just to go along with them?

          1. Wavelengths

            Wow! What a fascinating perspective.

          2. awaldstein

            Odd….I’ll check it out. Thanks Dave.

        2. Amble Resorts

          Have you seen Who the #$&% is Jackson Pollock? Raises an intriguing central question and myriad others about the nature of art and authorship…

          1. awaldstein

            Nope but I’ll look it up. Thanks.

    3. PhilipSugar

      Thanks…I had to look Tulum up. Looks nice.

      1. awaldstein

        Interesting spot.Part nature reserve, part grunge, part uber hip.Although it’s been built up, it’s the only place, easy to reach that I can rent a house on the beach, never wear shoes for a week, walk to restaurants on the beach and zone.

        1. markslater

          sleep on the beach with no electricity……

    4. JLM

      .Where do you stay in Tulum?.

      1. awaldstein

        Tulum ‘addresses’ are simply km marking on the beach road with 0 being the ruins and 10 the biosphere.We always stay 8.5ish or south to almost 10. More abandoned. And the last bunch of times renting houses.Can connect you to Lianna, the Tulum expert for info if you’d like.Gotham Gal did a bunch of posts I think on Tulum a ways back which were full of useful info as always.

        1. JLM

          .Please put me in contact w Lianna.I will research Tulum on GG’s blog.Thanks.I need an old school Mexican beach. I have been to Huatulco several times but it is getting too fancy..

          1. panterosa,

            @JLM:disqus and @awaldstein:disqus , have you been to Isla Mujeres? Was there eons ago and it was divine. Went on same trip to Tulum, and that was fancier.Still have my hammock from there. Will hang on my terrace.

          2. markslater

            yes i went to isla – you take a golf buggy and drive around the island. Its become very commercialized now – as has tulum – all great spots eventually get found πŸ™

          3. panterosa,

            That’s too bad. It was barefoot and charming.

        2. markslater

          absolutely arnold – i got married there. its beautiful

          1. awaldstein

            Cool…i am considering this myself.Curious where on the beach if you want to share.

          2. markslater

            we stayed in tulum but were married actually in puerto mureilos which is just north of playa, at a small resort called azul.

          3. Donna Brewington White


    5. panterosa,

      Maybe next time we meet we hit your Pollock bench? Catch some lunch on 2.

    6. Donna Brewington White

      I had to look up Tulum and now that I have, it’s on the list, The growing list.Each of these photos is mesmerizing in a different way.

      1. awaldstein

        I collect icons as you know. All the time wherever I go, caught in memory. Sometimes on the camera.

  14. Steve Palmer

    During the summer when I was in Greenville, SC participating in an accelerator, I would often go to Falls Park downtown. Great walking, riding and relaxing!

    1. JLM

      .Great city and one of the great American downtown rejuvenation success stories.I love the new ball field downtown and every time I am in the area — usually enroute to Highlands, NC — I stop there for dinner downtown.Well played..

      1. Steve Palmer

        Is is a rejuvenation success story…also had a few dinners with Craig Brown, owner of the Greenville Drive. Great guy, wealth of knowledge. He has been really involved in the development of the tech ecosystem there.Where have you eaten in Greenville?

        1. JLM

          .My favorite is Soby’s and I love to eat outside.Great food..

          1. Steve Palmer

            Nice. great place!

  15. matthughes

    While not necessarily secluded, I’ve had peaceful moments in these places in recent weeks:a) Flight from SeaTac to JFK.b) Beach combing in Del Mar, CA.c) Vineyard views in Yountville, CA.

    1. Steve Palmer

      I’ll take A! Vineyard views in Sonoma/Napa is tops on my list. Friend owns a winery on Westside Road (Miracle Mile) which has a really great view. Miss that place!

      1. matthughes

        I’ll be in Sonoma County in early January – looking forward to it.

        1. Steve Palmer

          Do you have a specific destination/itinerary? My friend, if available, would be happy to give you a tour and you would leave with a friend for life!

          1. matthughes

            Wow, that’s very gracious of you.I’m in and out in a day so time will be tight – all business, no pleasure.But thanks for the offer.Is Miracle Mile the name of the winery? (I’ll be sure to look him up next time through.)

          2. Steve Palmer

            Miracle Mile is a stretch of vineyards in Russian River Valley – some of the best in all of CA (particularly for Pinot Noir). Gracianna Winery is the name.Have a great trip.

          3. matthughes

            Ahh, thanks for the pro tip.Like a mini-appellation, of sorts.It’s on my list for a visit.

    2. Donna Brewington White

      These photos inspire a sense of happiness.

      1. matthughes

        Happy moments for sure.2012 was a great year.

        1. Techman

          Hopefully 2013 can be an even better year, for all of us.

          1. matthughes


  16. jmorf

    Hammock with a view, a good book, and preferably a whole afternoon.

    1. fredwilson


  17. jimmystone

    Alderbrook. It’s a fishing camp 45 minutes north of Saranac Lake. No cell service. Little slice of heaven. Here’s an early morning pic:

    1. fredwilson

      Gods country

    2. sdefor01

      I’ve a similar spot up there where I hide, near Lake Clear (between Saranac and Tupper).

    3. rbrke

      I’m glad someone mentioned the Adirondacks. Such a special place that so many ny’ers never get to. Where my Dad was born and where I have so many memories.

  18. Richard

    The Everglades, Nevis and New York Public Library

    1. Donna Brewington White

      Library — that’s a good one. Sanctuary for me as a kid.

      1. Richard

        any library with wood chairs and stacks makes for a great day.

        1. Donna Brewington White

          Just the word “stacks” gives me warm fuzzies.

          1. Richard

            Exactly! Must be in our DNA. Whats cool than sitting and working amoungst millions of man/woman hours of thought and labor.

  19. Laura Yecies

    Redwood grove at Wonderlich park in Woodside – I’m lucky that it’s just 2 miles from my house.

  20. Laura Yecies

    Typical view in Wonderlich

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Being in a grove of Redwoods feels like being in a cathedral. Breathtaking for me every time.

  21. Donna Brewington White

    Secluded getaways are few and far in-between at this stage of life. We do get over to Santa Barbara a few times a year which is a little over an hour’s drive and I soak in every minute. Carmel (near SF) is another favorite.However, I sort of live in a secluded getaway and this is probably what helps keep me sane. As much as I love spending time in the city and welcome the business travel that feeds this need, I’m a country girl at heart. I am blessed to live minutes from the beach, yet our house is in the Santa Monica mountains, so hiking trails, daily wildlife sightings and a wood-burning fireplace. We are talking very rustic. What tops everything off is that we live on a small lake. As someone who needs to be near water to be truly content, this is a great gift. Ideally, I’d split my time between this and something less rustic, but I am grateful for this lifestyle and my kids love it.

    1. William Mougayar

      That’s great Donna. I’ve seen some of your lake pics and they were awesome.

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Thanks, William. As I recall you live in a beautiful setting. I was thinking of you today because my husband is thinking about getting a chainsaw. Remember that enthusiastic comment thread about chainsaws about this time last year?

        1. William Mougayar

          True, I live in permanent seclusion, peace & solitude, surrounded by animals & nature πŸ™‚ I recall- it was something JLM & I had common.

          1. Donna Brewington White

            And the discussion was started by @Tereza:disqus — how I miss that woman commenting here!

        2. JLM

          .If you love your husband — and I know you do — and want to ensure that he will never, ever leave you — you will purchase a Husqvarna chainsaw for him.This is the equivalent of allowing a man to discover his manliness at your grace. It is like the gift of life itself. He will love you forever but be prepared to deal with a more manly man.Tread carefully, Donna. You are tickling the dragon’s tail and you will be taking a place amongst such mortals as those who discovered and harnessed fire.For when first he uses this chainsaw, you will see a man who has been visited by angels and perhaps God Himself. The transformation is truly a religious experience.There is no more manly and fulfilling thing in the world than operating a chainsaw, cutting copious mountains of firewood and then burning it. The first step in taming fire.The economy would be reversed if every unemployed man in America was turned loose in the woods with a Husqvarna and simply told — carve out your destiny, good and faithful man.I fear the unleashing of power that such an act will accomplish but you are one of the few women who could embrace such an explosion of power.Good luck. Fear not. H U S Q V A R N A.

          1. William Mougayar

            Or Poulain πŸ™‚

          2. JLM

            .Poulan, Mrs Finch..

          3. William Mougayar

            Inside joke, Donna.That was the French spelling

          4. Donna Brewington White

            You will be happy to know that Poulan/Poulain was also etched in my mind from last year (along with Husqvarna). However, how could I ignore JLM’s sweeping endorsement and the promises made — eh, eh? Unless, of course, you have a Poulain poem up your sleeve.

          5. PhilipSugar

            On this we can agree

          6. Donna Brewington White

            Ha — this makes my day!I appreciate this JLM, and for your faith in me. ;)On it. Husqvarna.

          7. PhilipSugar

            Stihl Farm Boss for this good old boy.

          8. JLM

            .Farm Boss v Rancher. Go with Rancher..

          9. Donna Brewington White

            Ah, Phil, you’ve just complicated things. After a close friend recommended Stihl to my husband, I was just ribbing him that if Stihl was that great, someone from AVC would have mentioned the brand. BTW, this friend carries a lot of clout because he owned a large ranch property adjacent to Angeles National Forest (one of our other secluded getaways until it was sold last year). Needless to say, a lot of trees. Seriously, though, thanks.

          10. PhilipSugar

            In all respect to JLM. I worked for a tree surgeon in high school, sold several hundred cords of year for our boy scout troop (the first one) Paoli 1 where I am an Eagle Scout, and heat my house with about 10 cords of wood a year. If you look at almost all tree surgeons and certainly all commercial landscapers trimmers you will see which brand they choose. I have many, many hours on my Farm Boss.As to performance the most important aspect will be the chain. How aggressive it is and how sharp you keep it. I doubt the Stihl dealer will sell you an super agressive chain, because if you don’t know exactly what you are doing the kickback can be brutal, I had to have a chat with the manager before they would sell me one.

          11. PhilipSugar

            S T I H L πŸ™‚

          12. JLM

            .Stihl is a very nice chainsaw in the same way that dating a librarian v the prom queen is also “very nice”.The Stihl will give you no trouble but when you really need to carve that wood up like clearing a pasture of some old mesquite or dancing until dawn, you are going to wish you had dated that slutty old prom queen.Just being dramatic. Happy New Year, Phil. I have enjoyed learning from you this year..

          13. PhilipSugar

            You as well!!!

          14. awaldstein

            A lifetime ago, when I was living in North Central BC with no electricity and all wood for cooking and heat, we needed a pile of wood the size of the cabin for the winter.I had a Stihl chainsaw!Happy New Year to you Phil!

          15. Anne Libby

            Husqvarna makes a nice sewing machine, too.

        3. Mark Essel

          I enjoy the exercise of a hacksaw and axe. I slowly wittle away at the fallen trees in my backyard until they’re good kindling for my fire pit. It’s good exercising and surprisingly satisfying.

          1. Donna Brewington White

            Oh, Mark, the Paul Bunyan imagery this evokes!My husband uses an axe too. Says it’s therapeutic. BTW, that sounds like a great backyard.

    2. takingpitches

      My God, Donna. You have figured it out!

    3. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      beautiful … looks like a tourist spot and… you live there…you should thank god everyday donna.

      1. Donna Brewington White

        I do, Kasi, I do. But you! Waterfall showers and elephants! wow.

    4. awaldstein

      Thanks for this share.Interesting how all of us find balance in very different ways.Have a great new years!

      1. Donna Brewington White

        I could create a bucket list just from what people have shared in this thread!Our circumstances and season of life have a lot to do with how we find that balance, although I guess that inherently some things just naturally feed each of our souls more than other things.A great new years to you too, Arnold. I am sure I can count on you doing it right. And I promise that one of the things that will happen next year is that we will hang out– preferably in NYC.

        1. awaldstein

          I guarantee that Donna.Overdue for a trip to LA and looks like I will have a new client there shortly so that may be the place.

    5. Amble Resorts

      Very nice. Such stillness is very calming.

    6. panterosa,

      Donna, wow. Next time we skype take the laptop outside!!!

      1. Donna Brewington White

        Thanks, Panterosa. I actually did skype with Rohan once from the dock – and swept the phone around to give him a view. But keep in mind these photos capture some of the best moments.

        1. Rohan

          Heh. I remember this. It’s gorgeous! πŸ™‚

    7. Mark Essel

      Beautiful spot Donna

    8. Rose J. Courson

      If you think Jose`s story is unimaginable,, a month-back my brother brought home $4436 just sitting there fifteen hours a week at home and their classmate’s half-sister`s neighbour done this for five months and actually earnt over $4436 part time On their laptop. applie the steps here, jump15.comCHECK IT OUT

  22. Donna Brewington White

    Fred, this sounds wonderful! So glad for you.

  23. ShanaC

    National Parks. Highly recommended πŸ™‚

  24. Teren Botham

    Somehow I find solace spending time at Treasure Island, SF… makes me feel coming back to normal life with a new beginning

    1. Donna Brewington White

      Great photo.


    Nice pic Gadgeteer. Looks like a good opportunity to wet a line.

  26. Jeffrey Hartmann

    One of my favorite quiet places in the world is in CearΓ‘ Brazil, its called Canoa Quebrada. Last time my family was in my wife’s country we went to three secluded beaches (Morro Branco and Praia das Fontes were the other two), and this one was my favorite. It was almost unreal how clear the water was, and it was very peaceful. If you find yourself in northern Brazil I would recommend it highly. Its much better then the beaches in the cities, you aren’t overwhelmed by vendors every minute like we were in Fortaleza.

    1. fredwilson


  27. Allen Lau

    My favorite place was not too far away from where you are. It is called Kurokawa in Southwestern Japan. It was in the woods on a river. Beautiful and peaceful. Exactly like what you said πŸ™‚

    1. fredwilson

      I will have to look it up on a map

  28. Brandon Burns

    Right now I’ve escaped into a bottle of NyQuil and my subconsciousness. It’s the only peace I can find away from this monster cold/flu/plague thing I seem to have contracted.But when well, hiking through the mountains of Wayanad, the northern region of the Indian state of Kerala = pure bliss.

    1. Donna Brewington White

      Niiice. Not the being sick part. So sorry. I’ve had something too…not as bad as what you have… not fun during the holidays. Feel better.

    2. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

      ha!!I go through wayanad 3-4 times / year … I don’t carry camera with me but I used to see elephants (wild) crossing the road every up-and-down the trip. There was a beautiful encounter with a herd of elephants last year … beautiful story …Let me see whether i can get a photograph from my friend from our last trip (last month) …

      1. Wavelengths

        I met elephants in northern Thailand. I will never think of them as animals again. I felt honored to be in their presence.

        1. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

          yep. elephants are harmless as long as they are with the herd…they will give false alarms just to protect their kids. Single elephants seen in the forest are dangerous…either they are lost or mad…gotta be careful when you a single elephant in safari.

  29. Barry Nolan

    Where i find myself now, Ballynahinch in the kingdom of Connemara, Ireland, and a few times each year. They’ve wifi now, not such a good thing at 2:25am. But it’s me that has to swipe the off switch.

    1. fredwilson

      The names of the places in Ireland are awesome

      1. Wavelengths

        I’ve heard things about Ireland like “20 different words for green,” but it seems to me that place names alone can conjure an infinity of images of paradise. I will tuck away that picture as one of my private escapes. I don’t even need to go there to want to own it in my collection of private spaces.

    2. scottythebody

      love Connemara! We have a few photos from a photographer in Connemara hanging in our place.

  30. pointsnfigures

    Grand Marais, MN. We have a cabin. No electricity. No running water. No internet, and cell phones don’t work. But, there are walleye, moose, wolves and bear. Heaven to me. Been going to this place since 1976. My kids love it and there are too many photos to post.

    1. fredwilson

      I once happened upon a moose on a hike. What an amazing animal

      1. Wavelengths

        I once happened upon a moose on a highway. Yikes!It gave me a whole new appreciation for the TV show Northern Exposure.

        1. pointsnfigures

          We had one swim by the dock a couple of years ago. She sauntered into a small bay next to the dock. Stood there for ten minutes and looked at us. Walked into the woods. Have had bears just walk up and help themselves to the bird feeders, right in front of us. It’s as “wildernessy” as you can get in the midwest without going up the Gunflint Trail.

    2. Anne Libby

      Ah, I also love Northern MN — a bit further north for me and mine. Beautiful, quiet, clean.The other thing I love about MN is the opportunity to be outdoors in the winter… snowshoeing and shoveling snow off a spot on the lake for an “ice rink” are some peaceful moments for me.NYC can be absolutely magical after a big snowstorm, though after the storm travails of our more recent years, I’m not wishing any more storms on us: I’ll travel for my snow.

  31. takingpitches

    without fail, I find a sense of peace within earshot of the sound of running water — at the most exotic, when near a waterfall in Hawaii, when, in an urban setting, near a fountain like the dancing one at lincoln center during the summer, or, at the most mundane, in mediation in my shower every morning.i’ve always dreamt of one day having a home incorporating water running through or under it other than just through the pipes, like Fallingwater in somewhat modest dreams or the Alhambra in my more regal/fortress-like dreams…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

    1. takingpitches

      A couple of pics from the Alhambra…

      1. Donna Brewington White

        That is the right idea. πŸ™‚

    2. Wavelengths

      A regular theme in spiritual teachings is the use of water to cleanse the “aura,” to remove the smog of old emotions and attitudes, and freshen the environment or body for new experience. I always think of my shower as part of my meditation practice. πŸ™‚

    3. Donna Brewington White

      I so relate. Even the sound of rain makes me feel better. And even better if I can fall asleep to it.

  32. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    falls trip …minimum 2-times a year ..Nothing cools me off than a shower and a shower and shower and more shower in the falls (s) near my home town … there are about 8-9 falls where you can bath … not just see … for all genders … kids have small falls (2), hiking people can enjoy 2-falls up the hill (2-4 miles up the hill), everyone’s falls (4).I go there on a 2-3 day trip … take shower in the falls for 30-60 minutes with some swimming … get hungry … eat …get a little drunk … eat …shower …take a long nap on the rocks …swim… shower … eat .. drink … nap on the rocks … do a little hiking … get tired .. nap on the rocks … shower ..get back to the room …fall asleep like never before…goes ON and ON for 2 or 3-days …I go there on off-seasons … no crowd… once in a while good to have shower in the falls with the crowd shouting like animals …literally… from outside the sounds we make in the falls resembles the monkeys in the same forest area.photograph of 2 (everyone’s) falls and a cool pilgrim after bath drying his cloths (not me :-)).

    1. William Mougayar

      Is that in India? Where exactly?

        1. William Mougayar

          Nice. That’s in Tamil Nadu. I used to go to Chennai often.

    2. Wavelengths

      I read somewhere that a devotee’s body has a different shape depending on whether enlightenment occurred on the in-breath or the out-breath. The pilgrim’s belly suggests the in-breath. He seems, though, to be in a place that could bring heaven to anyone’s consciousness. :-)You are in a place that seems very close to nirvana.

      1. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

        ha…ha… don’t take those pilgrims very seriously … it is just a entertainment for them to be like this once in a while. Seriously … people do this as a spending time differently for 10-15 days … as you can see many in the falls are having the same saffron clothing.

  33. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    btw, did you try their ‘sake’ … the drink made from rice? I did once and did not like it that much.

    1. fredwilson

      I am a big fan of sake

    2. Wavelengths

      As with any wine, you need the right food with it, and the right company. :-)I think with GG, Fred has both those issues covered.

  34. Guest

    Rocky Mountains, Colorado. High but not too high (below timberline). Nothing but mountains and valleys as far as eye can see.

  35. Rob Underwood

    Rural Japan has to be one of the hands down best places to get away from it all and unwind. I’m guessing by now FW has made it to the Nara area, so here’s a photo of me from 1995 (I think) at the annual opening of Mt. Omine in southern Nara prefecture.

  36. someone

    this will sound cheesy, but I get my solitude from biking to work. the phone doesn’t ring, no email, and I get to breathe fresh air for an hour each way:

    1. Wavelengths

      Lucky man! Both that you get to bike to work, and that the air is fresh.

  37. aminTorres

    3.5 hours flight south of NYC + north coast of the Dom. Rep. = Home. πŸ™‚

    1. JLM

      .Well played..

    2. Donna Brewington White

      This is breathtaking. Are there vacation rentals here?

        1. Donna Brewington White

          You have definitely inspired me (and my teenage daughter). It would probably be next fall before we’d do something like this — I am saving this info. Thank you! I wonder how many vacations will be planned based on reading the comments from this post.

  38. David Haber

    Big Sur. Have only been once, but Point Lobos State Reserve is now probably my favorite place on the west coast.

  39. Iggy Fanlo

    Probably sounds like a cliche, but I usually practice yoga to “get away”. I find its the only time I can quiet my mind during a busy week. It’s super hot, focused, repetitive… It has become for me a form of meditation… 90 minute vacation

    1. fredwilson

      Me too

  40. FlavioGomes
    1. William Mougayar

      Exactly. Every home has that place inside or outside where it’s quiet and peaceful. Good for daily peaceful moments.

  41. William Mougayar

    i can’t post pics. Disqus keeps timing out on me or giving errors.

  42. Amble Resorts

    You asked the right resort company… our island’s name means “sanctuary.” πŸ™‚

  43. ErikSchwartz

    The greatest solitude I ever found was at sea. Sailing back solo from Hawaii after the 2004 singlehanded transpac race I did not see another human being for 20 days. No email, the only communication was once a day checking in on the HF radio for 30 seconds with my position on a cruisers network.Very restful.Here’s a video clip http://erikschwartz.tumblr….

    1. fredwilson

      I don’t think I could do that

      1. ErikSchwartz

        Many people can’t. You get way inside your own head.

    2. JLM

      .Stronger than an acre of garlic!Loved the video.Thanks. Well played!.

  44. scottythebody

    1) A secret beach I know about in the Caribbean. About an hour or so of paddling in a sea kayak required to reach it from the main island, which in itself is only reachable by boat, no airstrip.2) Hat Phra Nang, Krabi, Thailand. I like it because it’s low key and there is almost nothing to do in the area except get a bowl of soup or some boat noodles. No roads in or out and all travel/supply by boat, even though it’s not an island. More resorts around, but they are all really low key. Day trippers kind of spoiling it these days, and a severe lack of great food, but still worth it and very, very relaxing. Great for adults and children. Boring in the best possible way.3) & 4) Family hiking holiday in Lesvos, Greece. Each morning you pick up fresh bread and cheese, then hike all day through mountains, valleys, olive groves, farms, seaside hills with Turkey on the horizon and work up a huge hunger. In the evening, feast on seafood and fresh vegetables. Seriously, I’ve never had better veggies in my life. The beets were one of the best things I have ever eaten — boiled w/ a bit of salt and drizzled with oil from the trees you’re looking at.4) a half dozen or so secret spots in my home state, mostly near Crestone, but also up in the mountains near Aspen/Crested Butte. Plus a couple more spots on the Grand Mesa and Colorado National Monument/Glade Park (sorry, no photos )5) Early morning on a day when my kids don’t have school and the weather is fine and I’m not in a rush to get anywhere. On such rare days, when the weather is fine, I’ll sit on my terrace and fully zone out.

    1. fredwilson

      Those all sound awesome

  45. raycote

    A few photos taken over many years of camping and trail biking with my son his 2 half brothers and their dad in the Southern Interior of BC.

  46. JLM

    Nuts but for me, it is flying at 11,000′ headed East dodging the afternoon thunderstorms coming up.This is what a thunderstorm being born — cumulonimbus baby right now but building — looks like at altitude.Dodging them is both fun and scary..

    1. JLM

      .Of course, my other car is a just a blimp.Long story for another time. This is the Goodyear blimp at rest on teather in Walterboro, SC. I struck up a conversation with a gent — one of the pilots — and bought him some BBQ at Duke’s in Walterboro.Few men have an hour of “blimp, co-pilot” in their log books proving once again, the power of Q.BTW, the Walterboro airport was one of the finishing schools for the Red Tails, the Tuskeegee Airmen. There is a monument there..

    2. ErikSchwartz

      Very nice.

  47. Guest

    .Eastern Corp Headquarters JLMWrightsville Beach, NC — I love to body surf and to read until dusk in the waning rays of the sun.Note entrenching tool to dig umbrella in securely. No position of mine is ever going to be overrun by the wind..

    1. Kirsten Lambertsen

      I lived on that beach for one year πŸ™‚ That was a good year.

      1. JLM

        .Dockside is my favorite restaurant there — fried goodness and the views..

  48. Kirsten Lambertsen

    Growing up in Wyoming, I had 18 years of seclusion and solitude πŸ˜‰ I find restoration now by being among other people who are focused and being quiet: the library. I also love the quiet car on the train from NYC to Providence (like a speeding library, I guess). I love the sound of other people typing on their computers, turning pages in their books, writing in their notebooks. I don’t know why I find that more soothing than a babbling brook, ha!

  49. JLM

    .Hunting is a great way to clear your head. Look for the guy in the lucky VMI sweatshirt.I am using a pre-WWII 7mm magnum Finnish Sako with a Zeiss scope. Please, President Obama, don’t take it away from me.The guy in the pic w me is the winningest football coach in Virginia HS history.If you have never field dressed a deer, here is a good example of the process. Sorry for the “crack of dawn”..

    1. pointsnfigures

      Nice rack. I hunted a lot when I had my dogs but they have passed on. Used to deer hunt every year and haven’t the past two because of business. On crisp mornings when the sun comes up and you are sitting in a tree stand overlooking a field, it can be absolutely beautiful.

  50. Carl Rahn Griffith

    Yorkshire Sculpture Park – luckily for us just 10mins from our home… there this afternoon for a walk – first chance to relax since my wife’s parents were both rushed into hospital just prior to Christmas. They are home now, recovering from pneumonia and a virus. Been a fraught period so some tranquility today is much welcome.Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. Best wishes for 2013, all.

  51. William Mougayar

    Sunsets have magical effects, and I can watch them forever. Same with mountains. You can watch and forget anything else. Here are a couple of pics from my last trip to Lebanon in June, where the Mediterranean sea and spectacular mountains are 40 mins apart.

  52. Guest

    Every year of my life, I have spent at least 2 weeks at Waskesiu Lake, Prince Albert National Park, Saskatchewan.…The townsite is civilized, the park is 1,000,000 acres of pretty much untouched boreal forest parkland.3 thing I always say about the lake:1) If you head due North & you keep going until you end up in a city of 10,000 people, they speak Russian.2) If I take you to the far end of the lake & you walk an hour into the bush, you had better know what hell you are doing – there is no Newheart style Vermont town over the next hill.3) If I ever develop a monster cocaine habit, after I kick it, I will move to the lake full time ;-)And I will hang full time with this guy….photo upload not working….

  53. JamesHRH

    Every year of my life, I have spent at least 2 weeks at Waskesiu Lake, Prince Albert National Park, Saskatchewan.…The townsite is civilized, the park is 1,000,000 acres of pretty much untouched boreal forest parkland.3 thing I always say about the lake:1) If you head due North & you keep going until you end up in a town of 1,000 people, they speak Russian.2) If I take you to the far end of the lake & you walk an hour into the bush, you had better know what hell you are doing – there is no Newheart style Vermont town over the next hill.3) If I ever develop a monster cocaine habit, after I kick it, I will move to the lake full time and I will hang with this guy…. πŸ˜‰

    1. Abdallah Al-Hakim

      nice. My wife is from Regina and I am adding this to our activity list when we visit during the summer!

  54. Carl Rahn Griffith

    There is a nice little app by The Economist – ‘Thinking Spaces’ – also worth checking-out.

    1. Donna Brewington White

      Looks great! Hopefully, they will make an android version.

  55. markslater

    i know this sounds cheesy, but i find serenity every day in my headphones.

    1. Donna Brewington White

      Not cheesy. We have to find it where we can. Although sometimes, I’m listening to ocean sounds or rain in mine as I work.

  56. laurie kalmanson

    “life has become too telegraphic for curiosity to linger,” edith wharton #ux

  57. panterosa,

    I am super lucky to have an outdoor space in NYC. That is the daily refresh. Light, sky, -2air, color, peaceful.In summer I spend 5 weeks in deep work/relax/art mode on an island in the NE. Maker mode in a deep dive, surfacing for chill time. pic #1-2I have been dreaming of going to a ryokan for 30 years. I have wanted to eat with the quilt as tablecloth and a pot of coals under table to keep it warm. I am building several things on my terrace to make it more ryokan style (modernish). I will make it winter friendly, with heat and mylar to watch the snow fall. pic #3Islands are my favorite places. Water and some form of seclusion, depending on scale. Being on the edge of here to out there is energizing, like the beginning of a journey, being inland upsets me deeply.

  58. Elie Seidman

    Selinda River in Botswana, Africa. 4 days of canoeing in the true wilderness of Africa pushes the reset button.

  59. gullfaraz

    I go camping or hiking – usually someplace where I can’t even get a cell signal, let alone 3G or Internet access. Here is a picture from the trail we hit on Black Friday.

  60. gullfaraz

    My company is in a co-working space and this is a pic of where I go for solitude during the work day. I suppose a perk of being a woman in tech is there are never any lines for the bathroom? (Notice how it’s dark, the light turned on when I walked in since no one’s been there in awhile.)

  61. Johann Sabbath

    Mt Katahdin, Maine. The end of the trail is also the beginning of a trail.

    1. fredwilson

      I love that hike. Did it often in college

  62. fredwilson

    ah, fishing. nothing like being out on the water to bring peace.

  63. Wavelengths

    My advice to Fred on the jet-lag blog — listen for your heartbeat. When you hear your heartbeat, your brain has shifted from beta (busy) waves into alpha, which are slower, and also where creativity tends to rise.Someone told me this week that my Aussie blue merle looks like a Jackson Pollock. I thought he was a work of art! I meditate a lot on him. πŸ™‚

  64. Teren Botham

    absolutely… tranquility and water ,,add life to that !!

  65. Donna Brewington White

    Wow. Is that in Pennsylvania?

  66. Steve Palmer

    Which Lake?

  67. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    I think ‘lake-fishing-american men’ are imseparable (commingled … i learnt that word in AVC) . Your Bear looks great.

  68. Wavelengths

    How old is he? I bet you have to brush him regularly to keep his hair so pretty!

  69. JLM

    .Good dogs only bond to good men.Evidence indicates you must be a damn good man, Sage of Lancaster..

  70. Guest

    Sky Meadows State Park – east side of the Appalachians in Northern VA. We had just come off the Appalachian Trail in the pic and were headed back towards the car down at the bottom.

  71. Wavelengths

    Ah, now, that’s a cultural stereotype! :-)There are also a number of other activities, many of them outdoors, that qualify to define “american men.” Most of those activities, though, have to do with “doing something” while actually just wandering around enjoying themselves.I have been caving, rockhunting, climbing, flying, fly-fishing, “bagging mountain peaks,” and a few other activities that all served the same purpose … spending time that somehow could be labeled “significant” while just enjoying freedom and mostly being outdoors.

  72. Wavelengths

    My doctor recommended that I get a service dog. His job is to make me laugh out loud at least twice a day. Good dog!

  73. Wavelengths

    Amazing how you can be in a place where you are so near to the next ridge, and yet so very far. How many hours would it take to get to that next peak?

  74. Kasi Viswanathan Agilandam

    My bad … but mostly what i have seen A-men have in common is fishing….and i accept my ‘mostly what i have seen’ is limited.I also always wondered what is that ‘with water and human beings’ … if you see this comment thread as well … more on water based out doors than mountains or sand-dunes (sand-dunes πŸ™‚ … one of my friend who worked in Saudi Arabia says the most enjoyable thing for him is todrink wine … during early nights in the sand – dunes)

  75. Wavelengths

    Our bodies are mostly water. Perhaps that’s what draws us to lakes, rivers, oceans. In southern Colorado there is a national park that preserves the largest collection of sand dunes in the US. An amazing place as well.