Posts with the category ‘Travel by Land’


Exhausted in a Gladiola Field, I Find Dutch Samaritans on a Bicycle Built For Two

September 12, 2019

  Intending no disrespect Google Maps, but could you please stop predicting how long it will take me to pedal 30 miles in Holland? I’m biking because I want to linger: see the sites, smell the roses, dig my toes into the sand on Holland’s expansive beaches all of which I CANNOT DO if I am racing across the landscape at 15 miles per hour. That said, when an expected two-and-a-half-hour ride from Rotterdam to Zeeland turned into something much longer, my energy level was so depleted that I started to worry I would not/could not make it to my hotel for the night.  Then… Read More…


In Praise of Serendipitous Travel or Seth Kugel Has It Right

November 17, 2018

It was hot as blazes, about 95 degrees, the October day I set aside to explore Muscat, Oman’s capital city.  Wiping sweat and chugging water, I ticked off just two of the city’s must-do activities before finding a shady spot to sit and consult Google Maps for my new must-do: find a beach. My 2017 trip to Oman to came to mind while reading Seth Kugel’s excellent New York Times Travel story How to Up the Spontaneity Quotient on Your Next Trip.  Like him, I firmly believe it is not the sites we see but the people we get to know on their turf that… Read More…


Spring Sights, Sounds and Smells, Coming Soon to a Garden Near You

April 13, 2018

For those awaiting the arrival of spring, the place to be is the Biltmore House & Gardens in Asheville, North Carolina. Over ten square miles you will find lush green hills dotted with still-bare trees whose branches are tipped in white, pink and purple. This vista of life rejuvenating convinced me that winter may finally be coming to an end. The six Biltmore gardens sit below America’s largest private residence, the place George and Edith Vanderbilt called home in the early 20th century. In early April, tulips create a riot of color barely restrained within the garden’s stone walls.  From this point of view, the… Read More…


The Globalization of Shopping, Chilean Style

March 8, 2018

Shopping goes with traveling like Swiss goes with cheese. Who doesn’t want to poke their nose into a little shop on a quiet street or steer one’s way through an elaborate entrance into a historic department store? Buying isn’t the point, exploring is. But as my sister, Andrea found during her recent three month visit to Chile, sometimes local can be disappointing. In this guest post she explains why the most satisfying retail therapy she experienced during her time in Santiago came courtesy of Sweden. Guest post by Andrea Lee Negroni Since arriving in Chile shortly before Christmas, I was in and out of stores… Read More…


A Saturday in Santiago With the City’s Economic Energy On Full Display

February 12, 2018

Guest post by Andrea Lee Negroni – Santiago de Chile For many Santiaguinos, Saturday isn’t the start of a relaxing weekend, its the beginning of another day of hard work. Enterprising folks – the ones without desk jobs – are busy hustling a living in a variety of creative ways. During my five weeks living in Santiago, I’ve come to appreciate the resourcefulness those working outside Chile’s economic mainstream. On any given Saturday, you’ll see manicurists tidying up hands and painting fingernails in pop-up street salons constructed from card tables and cardboard boxes. Some old men have put bathroom scales on the sidewalk so passersby… Read More…


In Bend, Oregon Stone Sculptures Go Flying Out of Creator’s Yard

December 27, 2017

Artist Greg Gifford of Bend, Oregon, sees inspiration where others might overlook it. He finds it on the ground. A decade ago, a hobby for stacking rocks turned into the retired school teacher’s creative second career. “The materials are really cheap,” Gifford said, adding another incentive to using this material over something else for his creations. Gifford first started playing with stones while camping on the beach in Baja with his wife Jan. Mornings they would fish or kayak and in the afternoons they would windsurf. In between, he would make rock stacks, seeking the most challenging, oddly-shaped rocks to see if he could make… Read More…


National Park Service Scenes Splash Across Northern California

August 26, 2017

Doris Dalbec is making use of the wheelchair her recently-deceased husband no longer needs; rolling herself back and forth from paint-laden table to the side of the visitors center at Redwood National and State Parks in Northern California. Oh, she can walk alright, but there’s a lot of up and down and side to side action when creating a mural 36 feet across and eight feet high. On the day I meet her, Dalbec was joined by Wanda Kirkpatrick and Nan Marie Stewart, three of many local painters who “leave ego aside” and work collaboratively on one enormous work of art. They are members of… Read More…


A Ride Through The Sky Even the Wright Brothers Couldn’t Imagine

August 10, 2017

Before the Wright Brothers mastered the air they were accomplished bike builders and competitive cyclists. All this was brought to my attention this Spring when on assignment for Air & Space magazine, I traveled for seven days by bike exploring the history of aviation in and around Dayton, the Wright’s hometown. You can read the full story here. Now, little more than a century later, we barely think twice about getting on an airplane on one side of the world and arriving on the other. The same cannot be said about biking in the sky. That is why I have a clear recollection of the… Read More…


Time to Forgive, Congratulations to the Chicago Cubs

November 3, 2016

To understand why I’ve rooted against Chicago’s Cubs for the past three decades, you have to know that once upon a time, the Cubs had me arrested.  And not just me, but Richard Isaac (aka Ike) my dear friend and camera man at WGN-TV. I worked as a city hall reporter in Chicago from 1983 to 1988 during the wild days when Harold Washington was the city’s first black mayor. Baseball? Nope, it was the city council that played hardball back then. Anyway, one day when the Cubs were not enjoying a particularly long run of losses, my bosses at Channel 9 sent Ike and me to… Read More…


Iceland Bared, Three Ways to See What It’s Made Of

October 22, 2016

“If you get lost in the forest in Iceland, just stand up,” or so the joke goes. Iceland has many natural wonders, but forests are not among them. You are much more likely to get lost among the volcanic rocks which pile atop each other over vast distances. Covered by snow in winter, lichen in fall and awash in purple Lupina in the summer, the bones of the face of Iceland have a seasonal sameness. I’ve visited Iceland five times in as many years, including a visit in July for this story for The New York Times. But after a conference here this week, I took two days and… Read More…


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