Updates from October, 2011 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • It's still All About Travel 2:45 PM on October 31, 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    Happy Halloween – “Dia de los Muertos” 

    Some years ago Art & I made a trip to several colonial cities in Mexico during “Dia de los Muertos “(day of the dead), a National holiday. I had read about the famous Mummies of Guanajuato, and it seemed a good time to visit the Museum.   As we traveled through the countryside (via el autobus) we were treated to the sight of cemetaries made bright with bouquets of Marigolds.

    We also noticed piles of ashes where we were told were human remains.  Dug up from their burial site and cremated right there, because the family could no longer pay the fee for yearly internment, or the last member of the family had passed away.  The contrast of bright marigolds and blackened bones was startling.  Dia de Los Muertos is a time for families to visit their buried loved ones bringing gifts of food and flowers.

    Actually with all that color, it seemed more a time of rejoicing their past lives than a time of mourning.

    Using our minimal Spanish we found our way to the museum on an unpaved side street.  It wasn’t fancy; lots of dusty relics, and many mummies.  It wasn’t really as gory as it sounds.  Actually some of them reminded me of paper mache art, until I reminded myself these had been real people with real stories.

    History says these people died around 1865 during a fatal epidemic, and were buried immediately to control the spread of the disease.  Unfortunately, some were buried alive in the rush. Due to the extremely dry climate of the area, the mummified bodies remain in tact, and are displayed today.

    Try as I might, I have not been able to resurrect my photos of this trip; so will add some from the Internet.  I’m sure they will pop up someday – another lesson to label and properly store your photos, negatives, slides, etc.!  I was good at taking plenty of pictures, but failed to protect them for future use.

    For more information, and pictures go to http://www.mummytombs.com and click on the Guanajuato site.

    As for my lost photos – do as I say, not as I do, and Happy Halloween wherever you are!

  • It's still All About Travel 3:50 PM on October 24, 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    Refreshing Olympic Peninsula 

    Cool morning walk through the trees

    This was a first for me – being in one of the most peaceful, coolest green places in the United States, and so sick I could hardly enjoy it.  My hosts were so understanding, and tried hard to make me comfortable.

    Stu – my kindergarten friend and his wife Sheila moved up to the area when they retired from the California Education System, University of Riverside.

    Both well versed in horticulture, biology and botany, there wasn’t a question I asked they didn’t know the answer.

    They took me up to Hurricane Ridge for the panoramic view of Mountains, wildflowers and Canada.  On the way home we stopped at Crescent Lake Resort for crab cakes and local beer. The following day we drove to Port Townsend for lunch and window-shopping.  On the way back home we pulled over to snap a picture of the Port Wilson Lighthouse with Mt. Bakers in the background.  Everyday just seemed to be more perfect.

    We took Punkin’ (their sweet collie-like dog) for a walk thru the Robin Hill Demonstration Farm’s tall trees and ferns.  Another time we took a foggy morning walk on the peninsula, picking up rocks and watching the children build rock towers.  It was absolute heaven!

    It was all so beautiful, and I felt so miserable.  I will have to return (if they dare have me again).  Please add this unique and unspoiled area to your “must see” list. There was an upside however, their aloof kitty Sunny ignored me for 2 full days, and then allowed me the pleasure of petting him just before I left for home.  I felt so honored.  Cats are like that!

    I’m fine now, just one of those un-named things that hit when you least expect it. I’m looking forward to another trip to this special beautiful spot in Washington State in the future.

    If you like the outdoors, water, trees, fresh air, and tired of Redding heat, plan a trip to the Olympic Peninsula – I wish I had years ago!

    Port Wilson Lighthouse

  • It's still All About Travel 9:38 AM on October 17, 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    Travel Agencies vs Internet 

    Like an avid shopper reads the sale ads, my eyes lock onto anything that pertains to travel, so this morning I wasn’t too surprised to see Avanti Travel’s latest ad in the local newspaper.

    In essence it says”:  “The Internet is for Looking, Avanti is for Booking” .

    Truer words were never said.  When I first started in this business, there was no computer, no Internet, we did it all by hand – or actually by fingers when we looking through the hundreds of pages of airline schedules in the OAG (Official Airline Guide).  We booked by punching numbers into the old manual phones (I have the arthritic fingers to prove it).

    Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not about to bash the Internet here; it has it place, especially for research.  I use it all the time, but when it’s time to book, to lay down real money, I go to my favorite travel agency, which just happens to be Avanti. If you have an agency you’ve worked with and they do a good job, go back when you’re ready to book again – they are your best bet for knowledge and experience.

    They have the answers to your questions, and suggestions you may not have considered.  And, when the day is done, you’ve booked your reservations, and made your deposit, there is a friendly face across the desk that is there for you, now and after your trip.

    Oh yes, just in case you do not have a regular travel agent you work with, give Avanti a call.  530-244-1400

  • It's still All About Travel 1:46 PM on October 10, 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    Beautiful Bali 

    I’m often asked my memorable trip.  It’s really difficult to say, as I have many terrific memories about almost every place I’ve visited.

    One of the most beautiful sights was the beach in Bali where the local people were celebrating their New Year.  We could hear the groups of people chanting as they walked down the narrow street into the little village where we were staying.  They were coming from villages all over the area, chanting and waving brightly painted umbrellas and banners.

    People of all ages congregated along the surf; all in exquisitely embroidered clothing, bringing their ducks to “sacrifice” to their gods.  Actually, they only pretended to sacrifice, they turned their backs, rescued the ducks for another time and returned them to the safety of the beach.

    The big puffy clouds over the ocean were the most beautiful I’ve seen anywhere.  I would love to return to Bali, but afraid that maybe it isn’t the same unspoiled place it was then.

  • It's still All About Travel 10:22 AM on October 3, 2011 Permalink | Reply  

    Times a’wastin 

    There’s never enough time for …….. whatever.  You know, that isn’t necessarily true.  The airline people have solved your problem.  You now have lots of time wandering around airport terminals waiting for your delayed and cancelled flights.

    It is time found, not time lost. I can name at least ten things you can do without even stressing my brain a whole lot.  How about gift shopping, or picking out the perfect greeting cards (doesn’t matter if you don’t have recipients in mind right now – it will happen). You can get a massage or a shoeshine.  The kiosks are in almost every airport.  Then there is always reading; a book, a how-to manual.   Do cross word puzzles and Sudoku (supposed to do wonders for your aging brain).  How about catching up on phone calls saving lots of time when you get home – too bad you can’t do your laundry the same way!).  Make out a grocery list for when you shopping at home.  Oh yes, fingernails – they always need attention after struggling with your suitcase.  Load apps on your iPad and read the “how-to” app (finally). I actually plan on doing that this upcoming trip  – I can never seem to find the time at home.

    I didn’t count, but I’ll bet it’s more than 10.

    I remember the time Nancy and I took the Skylink around all the terminals in DFW (Dallas) where we had a very long layover.  The scenery was great; we jumped off at each terminal and checked out all the shops and restaurants.

    When you’re wasting time in Denver International Airport, look around for “Colombo’s” the worlds best frozen Yogurt In my opinion.  In fact, for shopping and dining you can do lots worse than be stuck in DIA.

    And when all else fails, you’re exhaused from rising 4 a.m in Redding,  sitting in a closed airport (Branson, Missouri) at 11 p.m., waiting for a friend’s late arrival.  You get out the tiny deck of cards, any snacks you can round-up between the two of you, search the bottom of your purse for leftover peanuts and stale pretzels, washed down with a trickle of warm water from the one water fountain in the lobby.

    And the point is, there is nothing to be gained by grumbling (no one cares), and it certainly doesn’t help your attitude.  Make use of your time!

    Let me know what you do with your time while you wait!

    Nancy after a very long day!

    • Laura 10:51 AM on October 3, 2011 Permalink | Reply

      How did Nancy manage to get scissors into the airport? Mine got taken away.

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