Showing posts from April, 2015

Why Do I Feel So At Home in Munich?

I love Germany and want to return even though I have barely arrived. Why is that? I think it was in a book written by Stephen Ambrose that I read about American soldiers feeling so at home in Germany after WWII. I had never been to the country until yesterday. Now I can tell you why I think Ambrose was right...I think Germany is a true reflection of what we aspire to be. Here in Munich I see such a beautiful seems to me at first glance that the Germans have vetted life and gotten rid of all the unnecessary neon leaving only what is wanted.

Even the hair dresser that is a short distance away does not have a sign out fact there is not a sign to be seen as you walk down the streets. The hair dressers just go about their business in a beautiful room with a window to the world. I don't know but I guess that if I walked in they would tell me how to get my hair cut. Tomorrow I will ask.

Last night we walked out into the neighborhood for supper. The beautiful warm weat…

How to See Dubai Like a Local

I always feel at home. In fact the first blog I owned carried that name. Alway At Home in the world carries a special meaning for me. We try very hard to avoid tourist spots unless they are part of the bucket list we all carry with us. The places in Florence we saw were important to us before we left home and seeing them required standing in a line of tourist. It was worth every minute of our time. Dubai is the same. However we are trying to do what we do acting like it is part of everyday life. That my friend is a different experience than being a "tourist".

We visited the Palm here in Dubai yesterday traveling on the Metro from the airport through the city down the coast of the Persian Gulf. The Emirate has added land to the country in two spots creating a palm shaped land mass protected by a sea wall. The first of the two is a private area open only to people living in the area or those staying in the Burj El Arab.That particular hotel is so exclusive it has a 6* rating. …

Travel in Dubai: The Rest of the Story

In a world that is judged by bill boards and ad campaigns, Dubai stand as an example of what people think they know and what is real.  See, the Dubai I am seeing is not about extremely wealthy people or prices that are absolutely over the moon. I am seeing what Paul Harvey would have called "The Rest of the Story".  Only 1 in 5 people are Emirates citizens and rest are worker bees going about their lives much as they do everywhere else in the world. Today we traveled from Academic City to the Spice Souk on the other side of the city. Here is where spices from around the world are sold. But it is also home to a teaming mass of people buying kitchen utensils and shopping for the necessities of life. The smell of the market is wonderful and the salesmen are much the same as they are in Thailand or Mexico. This is not quite third world but almost.

We traveled by taxi day before yesterday down to the Dubai Mall and the Burj Khalifa, the tallest building in the world. It was ther…

Are You a Tourist or a Traveler?

I keep reminding myself that I am not in  Kansas anymore!  Actually I have never been in Kansas but if I was there once I am not now...or something like that.

Travel books and goals are all wonderful but sometimes life just happens and what you think you want may not be what you get. If you are a tourist you will come home with horror stories. If you are traveler you will come home with bragging rights and much better stories. It is your choice. And the lessons you learn on the road will apply to your life from beginning to end.

We are in Dubai. We left Tucson, traveled to Houston for deep fried salt, flew to Frankfurt Germany where I learned about the German attitude towards limping, spent a week in Florence Italy where I learned to eat, flew back to Frankfurt to eat Irish Food and spend the night in a gorgeous hotel and flew to Dubai the next afternoon.

As I walked the streets seeing the real Italian lifestyle and beautiful sidewalk cafes, remarked on how Frankfurt reminded me of P…

From Florence to Dubai...without a cane!

Am I celebrating? Well maybe just a little...walking around Florence WITH a cane is no fun at all so I decided to ditch the baby and cowgirl up. The thing you should be impressed with is that I did not beg for a taxi.

The truth of the matter is we have never been a family that tried to do it all in one day, see every museum or learn everything that is written under every exhibit. Travel is all about discovery for us. The most wonderful things happen when you are not expecting it.

My son and daughter-in-law led the parade of Torris's on a path with the goal always just a five minute walk away...I know because I asked a lot! We walked across the Arno bridge with the beautiful jewelry shops to a restaurant set in a small plaza. We walked back stopping for gelato next to the bridge. The walk back to our apartment led us through the Piazza Duomo (cathedral named in honor of Santa Maria del Fiore) streets we did not know,lost just a little and eventually to the Mercato Centrale. Our apa…

Eating Through A Day in Florence, Italy

It's All About the Food...

Travel: Firenze, Italy (Florence to You)

Even after traveling all these years it still surprises me when I arrive in a city and find out that we Americans (and maybe the rest of the world) have given the city a name that locals do not use. We are in Florence Italy for a week. So it puzzled me when we first arrived here last Sunday that every business had the name Firenze over the door. What did that mean? Then it dawned on me that all this time I had been calling this beautiful city by the wrong name.

We are staying in an apartment just across the street from the central market here so we can wander over and buy vegetables or cheese on a whim. The apartment is very old but sparkling clean. Shutters can be closed to keep out the light and windows swing open wide to let the afternoon breeze blow through. No TV, just we 7 family members laughing and talking together. It is wonderful.

We walk everywhere in the city and today we went two blocks to the train station and rode through the countryside to Pisa to spend a few hours. Th…