Mixing Memories: A Journey to Cognac & Rémy Martin Cellar

August 1, 2016France

In the early 1980s when Herb and I lived in Chicago, we would often spend our Friday nights after work at the Acorn On Oak. The Acorn was a wonderful old place and a bit of a Chicago institution, known for its piano player and the best burgers in the city. We would always manage … Read More

San Sebastián & Saint-Jean-de-Luz: Seaside Dreams of Summer

July 11, 2016France, Spain

San Sebastián, Spain The air was still crisp with the cool lingering temperatures of late May, but in a way it felt like summer. Our tour bus had crossed into San Sebastián, Spain, and was making its way up a winding road to Monte Igueldo, a viewing spot overlooking Concha Bay. Thick cloud cover was … Read More

Lisbon Day 2: Beautiful Belém & The Land of the Explorers

June 23, 2016Portugal

“And the sun poured in like butterscotch and stuck to all my senses…” ~Joni Mitchell, Chelsea Morning If Lisbon were a color it would have to be yellow. Yellow painted buildings, yellow tiled facades, yellow trams. And that big ball of a sun that bathes the city’s old architecture in a stunning, hazy light. Add … Read More

Notes from Home: On Cruising

January 31, 2016Notes from Home

“I see skies of blue and clouds of white, The bright blessed day, the dark sacred night. And I think to myself What a wonderful world.” ~Louis Armstrong, What A Wonderful World  I took my first cruise in the summer of 1994. It was a short, three-night affair on the Viking Serenade, a long-ago ship … Read More

Dalian, China: Not Quite Ready for Prime Time Touring

January 20, 2016China

Our cruise on the Crystal Symphony from Hong Kong to Beijing was packed with famous and fascinating places – a trip of a lifetime, as people often say. The final stop before disembarking in Beijing, however, was a bit of a mystery. Dalian, China – a financial center and seaport in northeastern Liaoning Province and … Read More

From Russia With Love: The Fast Train to Moscow

January 2, 2016Russia

“Everything had changed suddenly-the tone, the moral climate; you didn’t know what to think, whom to listen to. As if all your life you had been led by the hand like a small child and suddenly you were on your own, you had to learn to walk by yourself.”  ~Boris Pasternak, Doctor Zhivago All of … Read More