Category Archive: Themes

View Classic Corvettes at the National Corvette Museum

Begin, or renew, your love of the Corvette at the National Corvette Museum, as you gaze longingly at these classic sports cars that are an important piece of Americana and automobile history. Introduced in 1953, the Corvette became a favorite, and eventually a classic, and the museum attracts enthusiasts from all over the world.  Exhibits and displays change, but you can count on seeing:  introductory film about the history of the Corvette, a look at retro displays outlining how the car became a classic, technical information relating to design and performance, racing, and a gift shop.  You’ll be seeing lots and lots of cars! The National Corvette Museum is located at 350 Corvette Drive, in Bowling Green, Kentucky (map it), and is open daily , 8 am – 5 pm (except for Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve and Day, and New […]

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Back to Basics: Stand Right, Walk Left

There is etiquette to be considered on escalators and moving sidewalks.  It’s really very simple — STAND RIGHT — WALK LEFT! What does this mean?  If you are going to remain stationary while riding the escalator or the people-mover (moving sidewalk), stand single file on the right side, allowing people who are walking to pass you by on the left side.  It’s just like driving – slow moving (or non-moving) people stay to the right and out of the way of faster moving traffic. Do not congregate as a group and block the walkway from those trying to get by you.  This is a mode of transportation, not a coffee klatch, so either keep moving or keep out of the way of those people who are. All together now, STAND RIGHT — WALK LEFT!   Photo credit: SXC ____________________________________________

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Gondola Rides on Lake Merritt

While it may not be the Grand Canal in Venice, you can experience an authentic Venetian Gondola ride on Lake Merritt in Oakland, California. Operating year round, Gondola Servizio offers private tours (meaning you are not thrown together with strangers) on a reservation only basis.  Come as a couple for a romantic sunset rid, or put together a party of up to six for a more festive occasion.  Available cruise packages include: Marco Polo:  30 minute tour, $45 for two people, additional guests $10 per person. Casanova:  55 minute tour, $75 for two people, additional guests $10 per person. Promessi Sposi:  A photographers delight, and a popular choice for special occasions.  Gondola Servizio will work with your photographer to create a photo-worthy event.  This is a popular package for engagement and wedding photos, and family portraits.  $225 for two people, […]

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Bishop Museum Explain the History & Culture of Hawaii

Honolulu’s Bishop Museum offers the natural and cultural history of Hawaii’s indigenous people.   Founded in 1889 by Princess Bernice Pauahi Bishop, the last heir to Kamehameha I, you’ll find artifacts and exhibits representative of all the Pacific Islands. A couple of my favorite highlights are the Science on a Sphere exhibit and the Science Adventure Center. Science on a Sphere is a 68 inch, 200 pound fiberglass sphere suspended from the ceiling.  It serves as a sort of 3-D movie, displaying full color, satellite and animated images.  You can watch a hurricane forming, a dust storm, violent solar storms, or any number of phenomenon occurring on our planet or in space. The Richard T. Mamiya Science Adventure Center is focused on helping visitors understand the environment of the islands.  You’ll find exhibits and research on such diverse topics as volcanology, […]

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Sihanoukville Express, Bus Ride from Hell

Today I have a guest post from fellow blogger Ken Dunlop from The Vancouver Traveler. Ken spent several months traveling around Southeast Asia, and he graciously offered to share a bit of his trip with you. This is one of what I am sure is many anecdotes about getting around in Southeast Asia. So, you find yourself in Sihanouk Ville in Cambodia, and you are desperate to get into Thailand. Not wanting to travel the four hours to Phnom Penh in order to fly, the lady at the Internet Café presented a great plan, “Mr Ken, take the bus…it is good ride and only 8 hours.” Yup, you have it I took the bus. The day began at 07:00 for the tuk tuks ride to the bus depot, for the 07:50 bus departure. The bus is one of those huge […]

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Back to Basics: Mastering the Reservation Phone Line

I’ve written about this previously, but it’s basic information that can’t be repeated too many times.  I know that most people do their research and booking online, but there are times when you are going to have to call a reservation center. It can be annoying to be put on hold, and repeatedly hear how many callers are ahead of your or how long your expected wait time is, and even further annoying to finally get a person who you can’t understand.  I hope these tips will help reduce your frustration factor, and get you the information and service that you really need. Call at non-peak times.  This means avoiding calls during standard business hours, if at all possible.  Late nights (generally considered after 8 pm) are usually good are usually light in terms of wait time. News stories can […]

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Back to Basics: Remember Your Hotel Room Number

The days of having a metal key with your hotel room number engraved into it are long gone. Keys these days aren’t even keys.  They are flimsy pieces of plastic, about the size of a credit card), and instead of having a room number on it, it has a pretty photo of your hotel along with operating instructions about how to insert it into an electronic reader on your room door.  The plastic key usually comes tucked into a small envelope, or a larger folder, with the room number written on it.  But the larger envelope or folder is often too large to tuck into a pocket or purse, and so we leave the room with only the plastic key.  And when it’s time to return to our room, we have to trust our sometimes faulty memory about what the […]

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Back to Basics: Hang Up

How many times have you called up an airline (or hotel, tour operator, car rental company, or any other company that you want to do business with), and found yourself talking with someone who is rude, unintelligible to you, unwilling to assist you, or is downright hostile? If you’ve spent any time on the phone at all, this has probably happened to you many over.  I know that I have spent countless hours trying to understand an accent or explaining myself to someone who wasn’t listening to me and merely reading a prepared “script.”  It frustrates me when I have to repeatedly ask someone to slow down so that I can understand what they are saying.  And turn down the background noise so that I can hear you! How to resolve these telephone aggravations?  Hang up and start again!  Chances […]

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Idaho Potato Museum is Spud-tacular

Sometimes odd things catch my eye, and then I can’t get them out of my mind — no matter how hard I try.  That’s sort of been the case with the Giant Baked Potato at the Idaho Potato Museum (formerly known as the Idaho Potato Expo) in Blackfoot, Idaho. While I like a spud as much as the next person, in Blackfoot it’s elevated to the status of royalty.  Not surprising for the Potato Capital of The World.  The expo claims to enlighten you with information about the agricultural, historical, social, scientific, educational, artistic and economic aspects of the world-famous Idaho potato.  Here are just a few of the “spud-tacular” exhibits full of information and fun, if a little corny as well: Equipment displays The World’s Largest Styrofoam Potato – a popular photo site A tribute to Mr. Potato Head […]

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Hawaiian Eye's Shell Bar

“Hawaiian Eye” was a television series that ran from 1959 – 1963, and starred Robert Conrad and Anthony Eisley as crime fighting detectives in Honolulu, Hawaii. The detectives hung out at the Shell Bar, where at least once an episode that ran into “Cricket,” a singer and photographer at the bar played by Connie Stevens.  The bar was located at the Hawaiian Village Hotel, where the guys were house detectives and also had an office.  Some viewers would swear that the guys spent more time with the sassy Cricket than they did with any crooks. While most of the television show was shot on the Warner Brothers lot in Los Angeles, the Shell Bar was a real place — then, and now.  The Hilton Hawaiian Village, on Waikiki Beach in Honolulu, is home to the real Shell Bar, and provided […]

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