Foreign Places

24. Foreign Places

In this series, we leave America and pay calls to other lands.

“The Mediterranean” contains reports on a ship cruise Holly and I make across the Med, with visits to several ancient sites and cities. It  provides limited travel advice, as its emphasis is on describing the locations of many  sites of this part of ancient human civilization. This series is introduced with Getting Started followed by individual reports on some historic places in: Istanbul, RhodesCreteMaltaSicilySardinia, Minorca,   Corsica, and  Civitavecchia. The ruins and remains of these old cultures held me spell-bound for almost two weeks.

“Cruising the Northern Mediterranean” explores a different part of the Med than the reports above. These reports begin by Getting Started, followed by visits to the following Northern Med ports (with a week-long visit in Rome): Barcelona, Montpellier-At Sea, Marseille, Monaco-Monte Carlo, Florence-Pisa, and Rome.

“The Baltic Sea” contains reports on a ship cruise in the North and Baltic Seas.  I chose to take this trip for two reasons. One was to introduce my wife Holly to this part of the world, which I had traveled in my earlier years. The second reason was to take a more detailed look at the impact WWII had on this part of Europe. With this in mind, this series is introduced with: To the Baltic.  followed by reports on: Oslo, Copenhagen, Berlin, Tallinn, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Helsinki, and Stockholm. The final report provides some thoughts on this trip in  relation to a man who died during this journey, Alexander Solzhenizten: Reflections.

“Mazatlan” contains two pieces, each reflecting visits I made to this city in Mexico. In my youth, I traveled to the border towns of Juarez and Tijuana. In those visits, I failed to capture the warmth and kindness of the Mexican people. Amends are noted in Mazatlan I and Mazatlan II.

“Sailing the British Virgin Islands” recounts a ten-day sailing trip undertaken with four couples doing all the navigation and sailing. Getting Started shows the schedule and our preparations. First Night Aboard takes a look at our five cabin sail boat and other amenities. Norman Island was our first major stop. Indians Caves and Cigar Boats recounts swimming in some extraordinary places and having dinner at a suspicious hangout. Beef Island was next on the schedule. Followed by Virgin Gorda, North Virgin Gorda, and finally, Little Van Jost Dyke Island.

“Cruising the Danube River” records a cruise through the southern part of this river: The first report offers observations about different cultures: Getting Started on the Danube.  The second report explores Bucharest Romania. The third report is on Bulgaria. The fourth is  a focus on the Danube River: Iron Gate. Next, a visit to the city of Belgrade Serbia; then a related report, the Serbian countryside. Next is Croatia, followed by the Hungarian plains. Then a trip to Budapest, followed by Prague. Finally, a Danube River wrap up on this cruise.

NOTE: The articles below are in the process of being reloaded:

“Paris, France” with visits to Paris museums, Montmarte, and French culture.

“A Barge Burgundy Country” tour to see the  Burgundy wine country on a canal barge in France.