People say they have bucket lists. Well, if you are one of them and would like to add a single City in the world to visit before you…khe-khe…, do yourself a solid and pencil-in Rome. Italians call Rome the eternal City. Indeed, Rome’s history is truly eternal. One cannot simply recite it in any single book, movie or story, no matter how authentic book authors, movie directors, and story tellers try to be. The Rome of today seems like the Rome that existed centuries ago. In 2016, it still feels and looks as genuine as we historically know it to be. Old stone castles, medieval churches, Domes, marble stairs, iron gates, ancient ruins, crooked cobble streets, and even laundry hanging from peoples’ windows. Rome is real and is preserved in the bubble of time.
I Love NY! or do I love NYC? Tourists and even many born and raised New Yorkers associate New York with New York City – and understandably so. The City famous for its fusion of world cultures, cuisines, and fashion has an unfathomable appeal to all. The City with no limits to its universal acceptance of everyone and everything. The City where beauty is defined. Not surprisingly, few view NY in a wholesome light: New York City plus the State. The State has its own unfathomable appeal and defines its own beauty. Among many such beauties, the Catskill Mountains region is a worthy contestant. Catskills is a vast region of NY, which reminds New Yorkers that we not only live in a stone and glass jungle but also in a green, mountainous State. Less than a 3 hour drive from the City, many parts of the region make for a perfect long weekend getaway. One such part is a legendary town of Woodstock.
Flight Attendant: “Welcome to Ireland! We hope you enjoyed your flight aboard Aer Lingus. It was a pleasure serving you, we hope you fly again with us soon.” Then he mentioned the local time and the crappy weather.
Me: “Thank you! I believe this flight gave me permanent neck and back damage from sitting in a spiral position and I might have gotten a migraine from the bright lights that I had hoped would be turned off during a “red eye” flight. And yeah, crappy weather was right! Ireland welcomed us with a kiss of low temperature and pouring rain and a nice hug of wind.
And then of course you have to figure out how to drive on the “proper side of the road.” Welcome to Ireland indeed!
Among the uncomfortable flight, the nasty weather, and adjusting to “proper” driving, my hubby and I began to have reservations about Ireland…But Ireland proved us wrong…
There is something indescribably magical about pristine Southern wild wetlands, marshes, cypress swamps, and bayous. Such areas are notably found in the Mississippi River region in Louisiana, although a variety of low lands exists across the world. These incredible low lying wetlands have a life and culture of their own. Rich in wildlife, including alligators, deadly snakes, raccoons, owls, fish (crawfish, catfish) and other creatures, the areas are truly a unique feature of Louisiana and indeed of all America. The swamps of New Orleans, just half an hour away from the vibrant city life of the French Quarter, are considered some of the most beautiful and extraordinary ones. This is where I fell in love with NOLA’s swamps while torpedoing through the land on an airboat.