How do you define love at first sight? Is it the funny feeling you get in the pit of your stomach? A certain tingling in your extremities? That special sparkling glint in the eyes?  Or is it just a thing you know when you see it?

Well,  given that the first three symptoms occasionally also accompany nausea, which is anything but what I associate with the way I felt when I first fell in love with Sonoma County, I am going with the latter.

For me, Sonoma County represents a celebration of everything I treasure in my favorite destinations. From its well known access to adventure and culture to its celebrated food and wine scene to its native spectacular views and unique sense of community, there’s just something about Sonoma!

As a travel and lifestyle writer for the last decade and a half, I have traveled to many corners of the globe and it has always been my philosophy that the best way to experience a destination is to submit to the distinctive rhythm and energy of the destination.

To a great degree, this philosophy translates to getting to know what it is to live like a local while simultaneously pulling back the curtain on a destination’s best kept secrets.

In the coming weeks and months, as this blog explores and indeed scours Sonoma for the best it has to offer with an eye toward those things that would be of most interest to the GLBT community, my philosophy will remain the same. To take you off the beaten path and behind the scenes of the  sites, places and events that make Sonoma County so special not just as a destination, but also as one of the most gay friendly outposts in America.

Stay tuned each week and enjoy the ride. I guarantee that there is something about Sonoma … something that you may not know but that you’re destined to love.

Duane Wells, the former Managing Editor of GayWired.com and lead travel expert and blogger for MoxieQ Media, has also served as the host of “Here’s The Thing” a nationally syndicated hour-long daily gay travel radio program. Currently he is a travel and lifestyle expert and frequent contributor to a number of leading print and online publications in the United States, Great Britain, and Canada. He also pens a weekly blog entitled Living Wells: My Life in Luggage, which is currently carried by Frontiers Magazine and the Huffington Post. A resident of Los Angeles, Duane is currently toiling over a number of projects including a travel reality series and his first novel, “Heaven or Hell, Darling?”