Oceania is near the top of my list of favorite cruise lines.
It features mid-sized ships, in the 600 to 1,250 passenger range, interesting itineraries covering much of the world, and terrific food — or, as their ads put it, “the finest cuisine at sea.” In my experience — which includes two Oceania Mediterranean cruises — this is no exageration.
Oceania cruises are ideal for baby boomers — the atmosphere onboard is refined and the passengers tend to be older adults.
The cruise line is rolling out two new ships, one in 2022 and another in 2025, the first two in its new 1,200-passenger Allura-Class line.
Here are the answers to the Happy Thanksgiving Day Quiz in my most recent post. Let me know how you did!
1.Which historical figure is most identified with Thanksgiving in America?
a. The Earl of Cranberry
b. Davy Crockett
c. The Sultan of Turkey
d. Governor William Bradford
Answer: D — Governor William Bradford of Plymouth Colony, who is said to have declared the colony’s first Thanksgiving feast in 1621.
2. Who invented the green bean casserole, and when?
a. Betty Crocker in 1949
b. Dorcas Reilly in 1955
c. Fanny Farmer in 1930
d. Julia Child in 1963
Answer: B — Dorcas Reilly in 1955. Reilly was a product developer for the Campbell Soup Company, where she came up with the idea for green bean casserole, which of course uses Campbell’s cream of mushroom soup.… Continue reading
Yes, it’s time for another Thanksgiving Day Quiz, in which we delve into the history and mystery of this beloved and occasionally berated travel-related holiday, when most everyone in the United States either heads to Grandma’s house or Grandma flees to the buffet at Golden Corral.
Either way, there’s bound to be turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, potatoes, gravy, green bean casserole, pumpkin pie and at least one relative who hits the sauce too much, cranberry or otherwise. It’s a quintessential American holiday, epitomized by gluttonous portions of food, football, parades, family, friends, and, of course, traffic jams and overcrowded airports.
But how much do you really know about it? Here’s the quiz, and Happy Thanksgiving!
1. Which historical figure is most identified with Thanksgiving in America?
a. The Earl of Cranberry
b. Davy Crockett
c. The Sultan of Turkey
d. Governor William… Continue reading
I’m pleased to announce that my latest book, Secret Tucson, has been published by Reedy Press of St. Louis and is now available for purchase at Tucson area bookstores, online at Amazon.com, or from Reedy Press.
What’s Secret Tucson about? The subtitle, A Guide to the Weird, Wonderful, and Obscure says it all, though I would add you’ll find such nuggets as:
What one time New York crime boss spent his last decades in Tucson?
Why does the Beatles’ classic song “Get Back” include a nod to Tucson?
Why is Tucson a must stop on many treasure hunters’ maps — and where can you search for a fortune in gold?
Where was John Dillinger captured in Tucson in 1934 after a series of blunders by his gang?
What locale is home to both the country’s southernmost ski resort and a World War II Japanese-American relocation camp?… Continue reading
Previously, I wrote about hodophobia: the fear of travel, and some ways to conquer it.
Today’s topic is a bit more fun and upbeat: some less-known — and generally quite obscure — terms that reflect the essence of the love and fascination of travel. (Some aren’t confined strictly to travel, but offer insight into it.) Some of the terms are from English, and some from other languages.
The latter are particularly interesting to me because they capture some nuances that English does not. (And because of that, I may miss some of that nuance — so if you’re among the native Portuguese, German, or Swedish speakers who follow this blog, please free to correct me.)
Let’s start with a pure travel term that’s the opposite of hodophobia: hodophilia.
Hodophilia (English,… Continue reading
When my family and I lived on City Island, New York, a little island in the Bronx that’s the farthest northeast point in New York City, our next door neighbor — a born and bred City Island resident then in her 60s or 70s — made a startling confession: she had only once in her life ventured into Manhattan, and that was to visit a friend in the hospital there.
If you walked a short distance down the street from the little complex of cottages where we lived, you could enjoy a panoramic view of the Manhattan skyline. I was shocked to learn that that alone had not lured her into New York’s best-known borough — much less the cultural opportunities, the restaurants, and all the sights that people traveled to Manhattan from around… Continue reading
What, a place in California where there are hardly any people — and yet is so strikingly beautiful that it’s been called the Switzerland of California?
OK, I’ll ‘fess up — I’m the one who called it the Switzerland of California, as I hiked recently along a mountain trail bordering meadows blanketed with wildflowers and sporting gorgeous views of 11,000-foot peaks that still displayed pockets of snow in early August.
And its very name — Alpine County — certainly evokes Switzerland as well, as does its semi-official nickname, the “California Alps.”
The area was first explored by non-native Americans when John C. Fremont and his scout, Kit Carson, passed through in 1844. Soon after came contingents of Mormon settlers and gold prospectors, and much later still vacationers and second-home owners.
Alpine County isn’t very large — it’s the eighth smallest… Continue reading
Today’s guest post, by Canadian resident Robert Waite, argues that baby boomers should slow down a bit in pursuing bucket list items and spend more quality time in a destination to absorb the culture and life of the people there.
As Bob told me, his piece is meant to stir debate, and I found myself debating his points within my own mind — which is exactly what a good piece of journalism should provoke.
I’ll share my opinions on this topic in a later post, but for now I’ll yield the floor to Bob:
By Robert Waite
Those of us of a certain age might recall the film “If It’s Tuesday, This Must be Belgium,” a 1969 United Artists release that poked fun at American tourists for their penchant for rushing from European… Continue reading
It was the cultural touchstone of my generation — three days of peace, love, and, of course, music, mud, and skinny-dipping.
Somewhere between 400,000 and 500,000 young people somehow made their way to Max Yasgur’s farm in New York’s Catskills, drawn by almost mysterious forces that seemed to transcend even the lure of hearing Jimi, Janis, Joan Baez, Joe Cocker, Country Joe and the Fish, and Jefferson Airplane perform at the Woodstock Music and Arts Fair, as it was formally known.
Fifty years later, the joke goes, at least ten times that many aging baby boomers swear they were at Woodstock, too — perhaps aided by memories of watching the movie and listening to the soundtracks while engulfed in a smoky haze appropriate to the occasion.
When we last left Sandy Coghlan, an Aussie baby boomer who has written up her 1969-70 European travels in her new book, Yesterday: A Baby Boomer’s Rite of Passage, she was in Monaco enjoying the somewhat casual changing of the guard in front of Prince Rainier’s and Princess Grace’s fairytale palace.
If you haven’t read Part I of excerpts from her travel diary, you can go there now. As with Part I, I’ve added some of my own notes to provide context. Sandy has included her vintage photos and a few postcards from her travels.
We pick up the narrative in Rome, where she has gone to work as an au pair, looking after five children under the age of seven. (She confesses she got the job by saying she was the oldest of five children and had lots of experience looking after her… Continue reading