Category Archives: Uncategorized

Traveling This Summer? Don’t Leave Home Without This.

The Open Suitcase

It’s not a prehistoric birth control device.

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Costa Rica National Park, Wildlife Refuge, And Biological Reserve Entrance Fees Set To Increase. Here’s How Much A Visit To Each Will Cost.

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July 26, 2014 · 10:22 am

Into the forest and what did we see?


Our group of seven placed a high priority on relaxation while in Zanzibar, but we’re flexible, and we made an exception. How about a trip to the Jozani-Chwaka Bay National Park to see the Kirk’s Red Colobus monkeys? The Kirk’s Red Colobus are an endemic and endangered species existing only in Zanzibar.


Saleem, our guide, explained that three species of monkeys can be seen on Zanzibar and two of those are found in this park.


We’ve visited National Parks for animal viewing and often came away empty-handed.  In the early morning, Jozani’s monkeys were active and easily seen.



After observing the monkeys, we moved on to other sights in the park.  We walked through mahogany forests, watched 6-inch long millipedes as they scurried down trees, discovered flowers we’d never seen before, and strolled an observation boardwalk at the mangrove swamp.

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When we had planned to visit Jozani, we had…

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Tölting across the land of fire and ice; Part I

Aurora Borealis, fire and ice, Hestar, horses, Iceland, Icelandic horses, Kjóastaðir, riding, tölt


I had only two days at Kjóastaðir, where approximately 20 riders overnighted a few yards from the horse barn and paddocks. Huddled in the bunk house, visions of ponies and Aurora Borealis danced before our jet-lagged eyes. (On the second night, we were rewarded with a small taste of green phantoms pirouetting across the starry night sky. And yes, I did crawl out of my nice warm bed, grabbed my camera & tripod, and dashed into eye-watering cold to record the green ephemera, but my results were embarrassing.)DSC_0475IMG_1283The dining room resides, appropriately enough, inside the main barn. The view from the picture window in the dining room opens onto a view of dining horses. On the first morning, our guide, Meike, encouraged us to eat hearty. She recommended large portions of porridge topped with Skyr. The porridge was surprisingly tasty and she was right, it held me through…

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A Day Trip from Split, Croatia: Hiking Mosor

Croatia, Dalmatian Coast, hiking, Mosor, Split, things to do in Split, travel


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Color as the subject


Washington is light grey.  Boston is brick-red.  Bangkok is a kaleidoscope of bright colors – at least in the older park of the city. 




We stayed in the old city and visited wats, night markets, small shops, and little cafes.  The colors of Bangkok in the old city were inspiring.  We avoided the “new” skyscraper and mega-shopping mall part of town except to catch the skytrain.




We took hundreds of photos and noticed a theme emerging: the colors became the subject of the photos rather than the buildings themselves.  

November 2013

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Rich Tourists Now Staying in Luxury ‘Shanty Towns’ So They Can Pretend to Be Poor


It isn’t uncommon for wealthy travelers to visit economically struggling countries without ever interacting with the extreme poverty its citizens undergo on a daily basis. So a five-star South African resort decided to remedy this rich-kid travel ailment by creating something that is about 500 times worse than… let’s call it idealistic ignorance.

Emoya Luxury Hotel and Spa created a fake shanty town so that its wealthy clientele can pretend to slum it “within  the safe environment of a private game reserve.”

But don’t worry, even though the “Shanty Town” has intricately designed, colorful iron shacks, outdoor bathrooms, and battery operated radios, things aren’t too realistic for comfort. “This is the only Shanty Town in the world equipped with under-floor heating and wireless internet access!” its website boasts. 

And it’s also listed as ideal for team building exercises or theme parties. Because nothing is more festive than pretending to pinch pennies…

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