The Beauty of Antarctica

Filmmaker Kalle Ljung shot this incredible video of Antarctica over 20 days in December 2014 and January 2015.

Ljung says, “We started from Ushuaia in Argentina and went to Port Williams in Chile, rounded Cape Horn and crossed the Drake Passage towards the Melchior Islands in Antarctica. We spent 16 days in the Antarctic and got to experience the most amazing scenery and wildlife before we returned back to Ushuaia.”

Amazing is an understatement.  Ljung reveals the true beauty of the 7th continent that many of us will never see in person.  Enjoy his 8 minute joy ride.

Antarctica from Kalle Ljung on Vimeo.

My Italian Language Barrier (Or Why Italy Has A Phone With A Safety Button)

IMG_0138My dream vacation had always been Italy. I landed in Milan in 2001 and started my journey. My lack of Italian language skills did not deter me from enjoying a cruise on the famed waters of Venice; or finding the David in Florence (both the fake outside the Palazzo Vecchio and the original secured safely inside the Accademia Gallery). Then, it was time for Rome, a major European city where an American could easily get by on English. Or so I thought.

I arrived at the Sunset Roma Hotel as the afternoon sun shone brightly over the Eternal City. The former mansion dated back to the 1870’s and had become a luxury guesthouse renovated to provide all the modern conveniences. The hotel was located on a quaint, but narrow, Italian street with alimentari, or small grocery stores, on each corner, and was far enough off the beaten tourist path to make me feel like I was experiencing the real Italia.

Continue reading

The New A380. It’s Gettin’ Tight Up In Here, Ya’ll!

Remember the days when flying on a plane was fun?  Everything from arriving at the airport to check-in to boarding and then take-off, the flight and landing!  It was an experience!

CCiM7LxWEAAMr2e.jpg_largeNow, it’s just an EXPERIENCE!  And that experience is about to get worse, especially if you will be traveling on the Airbus A380.  This week Airbus announced that it’s changing the configuration of the seating arrangement on the double-decker A380.  Those in Economy seating will soon be 11 persons per row.  That’s a 3-5-3 configuration as shown on the right. Continue reading

A StarWars Plane? The Force is With ANA

Courtesy: ANA

Courtesy: ANA

Thanks to EverybodyHatesATourist.Net for bringing this to my attention.  This has to be the coolest things I have seen painted on a plane in years.  Japan’s All Nippon Airways (ANA) has painted a plane to look like the StarWars icon, R2-D2.  It’s part of an overall StarWars deal with the Japanese carrier.  No word yet on just where R2 will be flying, but I doubt it will be to a Galaxy, Far, Far Away (Sorry, I had to!).

Check out R2 in flight below!

20 Signs Louisiana Is The Most Underrated State In The US

Originally published by MatadorNetwork.com on April 13, 2015.


Photo: Katie Harbath flickr/KatieHarbath

Photo: Katie Harbath
flickr/KatieHarbath

1. Two words: Open container.

2. We’re too cool for counties. We do parishes.

3. We gave you Mardi Gras.

4. And Reese Witherspoon, Jared Leto, Ellen DeGeneres, Jared Leto, Tyler Perry, Jared Leto, Harry Connick, Jr., and did we mention JARED LETO?

5. And jazz! And Satchmo! If you even have to ask…

6. We are the Festival Capital of America with 400 festivals every year. Happy Contraband Days Pirate Festival, ya’ll.

7. We also have the Crawfish Capital of the World in Breaux Bridge — that means we’re the best at sucking heads and pinching tails. Continue reading

Chicago is “EPIC”

The city of Chicago wants you to know it’s an Epic place.  That is the theme of its latest tourism campaign to attract more visitors to this epic city.  Now that I have lived here for four years, I will say it’s a great city to visit.  So much to see and do and our shoreline is spectacular.  Spring, Summer, Fall are great times to visit Chicago.  Winter? Uhm, not so much.