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Atlantic Crossing on Holland America’s Westerdam:

Diary of a Some-Time Cruisaholic and Her Cruise Shy Husband (Part 3. Going Below the Surface on the Westerdam) If you’ve read J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books, you’ll remember how kid-pleasing food and pumpkin juice appeared directly on the tables in the dining hall at Hogwarts. You’ll also remember the elves working hard below the […]

Accommodation / Europe / Food & Beverage / Travel / Travel Tips

Atlantic Crossing on Holland America’s Westerdam:

Food Preparation in the Westerdam Galley (©simon@myeclecticimages.com)

Diary of a Some-Time Cruisaholic and her Cruise Shy Husband (Part 2. Food and Fun) Ask anyone to talk about their experiences aboard a cruise ship, and the answer will boil down to two components: food and fun. In both these areas, Holland America Westerdam excelled. From a Gala Night dinner menu featuring jumbo shrimp […]

Accommodation / Europe / Food & Beverage / North America / Travel

Atlantic Crossing on Holland America’s Westerdam:

The Westerdam Docked in Cadiz

Diary of a Some-Time Cruisaholic and Her Cruise-Shy Husband (Part 1. Days 1-5 Aboard the Westerdam) Traveling by cruise ship means different things to different people. To some, it’s a haven for the lazy and shallow. To others, it’s the only way to go. For me, it’s something I would like to do more often, […]

Accommodation / Europe / Travel / Travel Tips

The Galaxy Hotel****, Krakow, Poland:

The Perfect Place to Relax and Recharge. Visiting Krakow and surrounding areas is nothing if not intense. Her past is at the same time dark and stained with blood and illuminated by courage and glory. Her present is vibrant and her future optimistic. Whether you are returning from a day imersing yourself in the horrors […]

Europe / Travel

Meet the Beautiful People of Ireland:

There Must be a Pot of Gold at the End of this Irish Rainbow (©simon@myeclecticimages.com)

They’ll Steal your Heart, and Fill you with Joy in Return They shine brighter than leprechaun gold, spread more warmth than fine Irish whiskey and are gentler than the lambs that dot the hillsides and fields of the Emerald Isle. Their unique combination of generosity, thoughtfulness and humor flow like mothers’ milk, nourishing your spirit, […]

Europe / Travel Tips

Leon Paris and the Gaudi Effect:

Exploring the Works of Barcelona’s Most Famous Architect and his Peers Following our first Barcelona walking tour with Leon Parris, Simon, Otto and I jumped at the opportunity to let this remarkable guide lead us through the city’s most famous architectural sites including a number of the notable Gaudi creations. Now, architecture is a subject […]

Europe / Travel

3 Must-See Cities in Southern Spain – Part 3:

The Alhambra (©simon@myeclectcimages.com)

Granada Granada is a city of contradictions. Its history is equal parts seductive beauty and repulsive acts, unwavering courage and unfathomable cruelty, industriousness and destructiveness, glory and shame. Granada beckons you to walk its narrow streets and sit in its open squares. You can ski the nearby Sierra Nevada Mountains in the morning and relax […]

Europe / Travel

3 Must-See Cities in Southern Spain – Part 2:

Plaza de España - Site of the 1929 Ibero-American Exhibition (©simon@myeclecticimages.com)

Sevilla The fourth largest city in Spain and the capitol of Andalusia, Sevilla has a laid-back charm that’s hard to beat. Parade of Conquerers Although legend has it that Sevilla was founded by Hercules, the area saw a variety of occupiers, including Phoenicians and Greeks. Then, in 206 BC, the Romans sent the Carthaginians packing. […]

Europe / Travel

3 Must-See Cities in Southern Spain – Part 1:

The Roman Bridge and Tower in Cordoba

Cordoba, Sevilla and Granada Are Waiting to Embrace You If Madrid is Spain’s heart, Andalusia including the cities of Cordoba, Sevilla and Granada own a large piece of its soul. It is a region of majestic mountains, sun-drenched beaches, turbulent history, mind boggling architecture, over-the-top scrumptious food and happy, friendly people. So, what’s there not […]

Europe / Travel

Lowther Castle, a Modern-Day Phoenix

This Lake District Wonderland Rises From the Ashes of Excess and Neglect. The sun was out. Perhaps not exactly a reason to get wildly excited, but after a week of continuous rain throughout our visit to England, Simon Otto and I were absolutely elated. Aside from the opportunity to spend several hours outdoors without constantly dodging […]