New Orleans is a special place for me. It was the very first foreign city (and country) I visited. I was 11. Throughout my teenage years and adulthood, it stayed in my memory as an exotic place. Everything was unfamiliar and exciting, a whole new sensual experience: the sights, the sounds, the smells, the tropical weather, the humidity, enormous watermelons, [...]
If you ever plan to motor west, Travel my way, take the highway that is best. Get your kicks on route sixty-six. Alrighty then, let's go get our kicks. But since we've only got a few days, it will have to be just a short stretch, within the Land of the Red Man. That's what Oklahoma means, in the [...]
Belize City, ca 2pm. Well, not 2pm today. But pre-corona and then some. Isn't just about everything fun pre-corona these days? BUT - post-corona is just around the corner. Smiiile! I'm in Belize to see Mayan pyramids. We're just down from Mexico, and the kids are pyramided out, so they're zip-lining instead - from treetop to treetop somewhere out in [...]
Here I go again, starting one thing and ending up with quite another. Working on a blog post about China’s Grand Canal, I begin thinking about other canals I’ve been on. Or along. Or above, or beside. There are quite a few. At the same time, I’m noticing that my coverage of these cool man-made structures has been so-so. In [...]
I love waterfalls; it's my favourite feature of nature. I also love rainbows. We all do, don't we? However, I feel I can make it a special claim, since my youngest daughter’s middle name is Hóng, meaning rainbow in the Hakka language. Rainbow over Iguazu Waterfalls crossing borders Just like Victoria Falls/Mosi-oa-Tunya marks the international border between Zambia and Zimbabwe, [...]
See this bell? We'll come back to it soon. But first, the building in the background. Independence Hall: where the US Declaration of Independence was signed, and later, the US Constitution. This building then, is where the first steps towards democracy in the USA were taken. (Of course, a country isn't democratic when more than half the population is excluded from [...]
When you enter Santiago de Cuba, the first thing you'll see may very well be San Pedro de la Roca, or El Morro, as the locals call it. On a morro, a promontory, above Santiago, it was constructed to protect the harbour of Cuba's second city. By chance, I've visited many military forts the last few years, and have found [...]
We're not quite ready to leave Mexico yet here on Sophie's World. Today, we'll go for a swim, in a spring deep below ground, sunlight shining from high above. And we'll dive through enchanted caves in the jungle. (Well, you are. I'll stay in the shallows, because water and I, we have somewhat of a tense relationship.) And where will [...]
O'Hare, 28 October 2019 Not exactly my commute: Dashing through the... airport Sprinting through O’Hare like Kevin’s mom, all offspring accounted for (not here), only to discover I’ve lost the ability to read printed boarding cards - and have an entire hour to kill. So here are a few facts for you, folks, for which I’m sure you will be [...]
Last week, I wrote about the 7 wonders of the world – ancient and new. The good people in the Yucatan have Chichen Itza, one of the seven new ones, so naturally I've heard lots about it lately. As I've listened to locals going on about the new 7 wonders, and particularly their local pride and joy, I've considered whether [...]
Rick's Fine Chocolates and Coffees, 26 October 2019 Not exactly my commute - Guthrie, OK edition Working in a chocolaterie in small town America today. Strangely mindboggling. More so than it would be on a Thai beach. Or a sidewalk cafe in Almaty. This isn’t any small town, you see. Exotic, yet home. Different, yet familiar. Venue of many of [...]
JFK, 18 Oct 2019 Friday tip on how to unintentionally make friends at airports. Picture the scene: Airport security, pretty busy, couple hundred people in line. Finally my turn. I go through that machine where you raise your arms above your head – and come out with a yellow warning dot on the screen, which means I have to [...]
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