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Hello from The Heartland!

Autumn has been filled with incredible connections with my wonderful friends and family. I loved my time in California, but the US journey isn't complete without visiting Middle America - or "The Heartland" as it's also known.

The first stop is Oklahoma City, where a mini-family reunion took place! It was so fun to explore this city with people so close to my heart. The loving energy and dynamic of family was good for the spirit and soul.

Then it was on to Des Moines, Iowa, where I spent about 10 days just playing and working downtown. I had no expectations, but I was hoping for some down-to-earth niceness here.

Both cities were really impressive, and I'm glad I got to trek through The Heartland!

Oklahoma City, OK

On April 19, 1995 at 9:02am, our lives were changed forever with the Oklahoma City bombing at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. This tragic event deeply impacted us due to the number of deaths, and particularly the number of children in the day care center that died. There were 168 deaths and 800 injured. The magnitude of the blast also damaged 324 buildings within a 16-block radius.

A task force began the heavy emotional task of building a memorial - The Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum.

The Memorial Museum is in a building that withstood the bombing. The Museum uses video and artifacts to tell the story and is really well done. It’s a pretty emotional and somber experience.

You experience the entire devastation and sadness of that day - from the hours before the bombing - to the time when the perpetrator was sentenced to death.

The Outdoor Symbolic Memorial

This is a place of quiet reflection. It honors those who were killed, those who survived, and those changed forever on that day. It encompasses the now-sacred soil where the Murrah Building once stood, as well as the surrounding area devastated by the attack.

Each chair in the Field of Empty Chairs represents and memorializes a person killed in the bombing.

Des Moines, IA

To continue my trek up through Middle America, I spent a week in Des Moines, Iowa - the capital of Iowa.

The Des Moines River runs through town, and Iowa Women of Achievement Bridge stands in glory across the river! It links the east and west sides of Des Moines. There are two separate paths across the bridge - one for bicycles, and the other for walkers or joggers.

The Historic East Village is a vibrant and diverse part of Des Moines, with interesting shops and restaurants - and located near the Capitol Building. It is one of the original commerce areas, and includes the Capitol and other historic places. I loved the character, charm, and culture of this part of town!


While I was in California, I had this idea to start a podcast. It certainly wouldn't be to compete with big podcasters out there. But for those that want to follow my journey, it may be interesting, informative, or entertaining.

I have some fun ideas, and I'm pretty excited about it, so stay tuned!

If I started a podcast, would you listen?


Now it's time to wind down the year and just settle into family life. I'm so fortunate to have a wonderful family filled with holiday traditions that I can be a part of.

Of course, I'm thinking about next year and starting to plan out 2023. But one thing I've learned over the last three years is that things can change - and likely will. Who knows. But at this point, 2023 will include Athens, Greece, more North England and the UK, and then up to the Scandinavian countries and probably Sweden.

Until then, it's just family, kids, food, and Christmas!

I really appreciate those who have been reading my travel blogs. Thanks for following along!



Bob Tapper

Outside US: +01 9494846275

Inside US: (949) 484-6275

Hello from California!

I have fond memories of California. Nothing but love. It was my home for over 30 years! I wasn't sure what to expect or how to feel being back after all this time. I was open to any emotion or experience. For me, it certainly felt changed.

My six-week stay in Orange County, California would include three different moves. I stayed in two different Airbnb's, and also a guest cottage behind a home. One place was literally across the street from the beach! The others were close to the beach - and only about 10 minutes from the marinas, harbors, and docks along Pacific Coast Highway. Pretty nice!

The main purpose of being in California was to connect with friends. I did - and it was really, really beautiful. I had heartfelt conversations with friends that I haven't seen in almost three years. There's nothing better than a hug to bring forth those loving connections

I have to admit, it did sometimes feel like a California dream...

Huntington Beach - Surf City USA

Huntington Beach (also known as Surf City USA) is located along the coast of Orange County, California. It's known for its beach culture and active outdoor lifestyle - especially surfing. It also hosts the US Open of Surfing and Pacific Airshow. Huntington Beach is quite a beautiful place!

Laguna Beach

A place that will always be close to my heart is Laguna Beach. Laguna has been part of my life since my first visit in the early 1990s. Even when I first lived in Los Angeles, my friends and I would drive down on weekends to go to the beach.

I loved Laguna from my first visit, and I eventually made my home there. The lifeguard tower at Main Beach is iconic. When you see pictures, postcards, or paintings of Laguna, it will likely include this structure.

It's hard to believe, but this tower was actually part of a gas station back in the 1930s, and was originally across the street. It was later moved (by horses!) to the beach and used as a lifeguard tower. Today, it's a secondary tower because of its small size. A larger tower was eventually built nearby. Such a cool structure!

*Historic photo courtesy of Laguna Beach Historical Society

Favorite Moments:

After spending so many decades in California, with so many memories, this Golden State will always be special to me. And I'm always thankful for these friends.

Scrolling through my camera roll, I picked some of my favorite moments in California. Good times with wonderful people. It feels good to know that I can always come back and feel welcome.

So...I went to a beach wedding with former co-workers and friends, got my haircut by Dustin, went to a beautiful Sanskrit Sound Bath by Stacy, and reminisced with Myra (and her two adorable kids) about our twenty-year friendship! Oh, and I got cast in a short film!


There is no doubt that being back in the US has been an adjustment. So much has changed. Yet some things haven't.

I had wonderful and meaningful conversations with so many people in California. It was really heartwarming. I appreciate their friendship and kindness so much. I'm really glad I got to go.

Now that my time in California has come to a close, it's time to head back to Minnesota and spend more time with family until the end of the year. I'm dreaming of winter snow (hopefully), coffee by the fire, family and kid stuff, and best of all - the holiday traditions!

But before I get back to Minnesota, I've got a couple stops to make. One is in Oklahoma City, and the other in Des Moines, Iowa - otherwise known as The Heartland!

I really appreciate those who have been reading my travel blogs. Thanks for following along!



Bob Tapper

Outside US: +01 9494846275

Inside US: (949) 484-6275

Hello from the United States!

It was an easy flight from the UK to the US, and it was quite an odd feeling returning after nearly three years. I think it was a combination of excitement, apprehension, and just entering the unknown that had me wonder...

Have things once familiar to me changed?

Everything in the US (and the world I suppose) feels a bit fragile right now. Nowadays we're challenged to find common topics to discuss with each other. One wrong word about politics, viruses, health, cultural issues, etc. can shake up relationships like never before.

My bottom line is this: I agree with some people. I disagree with others. That actually seems quite normal to me. I hope as time goes on we can all feel more secure in expressing our thoughts and opinions with each other.

I'm just trying to forge forward, accept and not judge others that may think and believe differently than me, practice non-reactivity - and most of all, be kind.

Given that, I''m expecting some quality moments in the US, and it started with two weeks in the great state of Minnesota to spend time with family. Being with my family helps to ground me. There's something special about being around people that have known you all your life. It's nice having a home life for a bit! Minnesota nice.

So, here was my Minnesota experience in September:

Lake Living

Minnesota is known as the Land of 10,000 lakes - the highest number of any state in the US! It makes sense, since Minnesota (according to the Dakota Sioux) actually means "clear, blue water."

The lake is the perfect place for family and friends to gather. Quiet and peaceful. The sound waves hitting the shore is so soothing. It's all about boating, swimming, and fishing. And just before sunset is the best time to catch a fish or two.

The Battle of Jesse James

Jesse James was an American outlaw, known for his bank and train robberies. On September 7, 1876, Jesse and his gang attempted to rob the First National Bank of Northfield, Minnesota.

Every year in Northfield, they recreate the events of that day. It was fun to be a part of the crowd and capture the re-enactment!

Minnesota State Fair

Our State Fair is a great state fair. Don't miss it, don't even be late!

Rodgers & Hammerstein

The Minnesota State Fair is a sure sign that summer is over and autumn is around the corner since it ends on Labor Day each year. The fair is one of the largest in the US and also one of the oldest. It began in 1859.

Watching kids get excited about midway games and rides, the smell of the wonderful food (omg the bacon!) is what this fair is about. Oh, and also the farm animals!


My time in the US is all part of this incredible journey of international travel and pursuing my creative endeavors. Whether it's exploring a new city or country, or visiting a familar one, I'm so grateful I can continue working on my acting, filmmaking, and travel blog passions.

Next blog is all about my California trip!

I really appreciate those who have been reading my travel blogs. Thanks for following along!



Bob Tapper

Outside US: +01 9494846275

Inside US: (949) 484-6275

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