Until our most recent trip to Berlin, Travis and I had never gone on a guided walking tour of a city – paid or free. When we’ve gone on other kinds of guided tours, we’re always the slowest in the bunch, hanging back to take photos or read some obscure sign nobody in their right mind cares to read. Even when we know we might “get Continue reading SANDEMANs “Free” Berlin Guided Walking Tour: Yea or Nay?
Munich is known for its Oktoberfest. Berlin has the Berlin Wall. Heidelberg is home to one of the prettiest castles in Germany. But what’s the deal with Hannover? We live just an hour south, yet other than the fact that it’s the local seat of government for our region of Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), we know very little about Continue reading So what’s the deal with Hannover?
We should be in India today. We’re not. For those who may not know, we’d been looking forward to a two-week trip to Kashmir for months. Travis was invited to give a lecture at the University of Kashmir at a developmental neuroscience conference. After that, we planned to spend a week hiking, camping, and sight-seeing in the Continue reading Two Sad Potatoes Are Not Going To Kashmir
Sunday brought glorious sunshine to our beautiful stretch of white sandy beach on the Baltic Sea where we were camping. Instead of motivating us to get out and explore nearby sites, it was all we could do to tear ourselves away from the sand, sun, and surf. We lounged around on our Family Fun Blanket, sipping coffee and devouring Continue reading Laboe Naval Memorial and U-Boat 995
The only fault one could possibly find with German castles is that there are just so many of them. It’s difficult to decide which ones to visit and which ones to skip. While last year we celebrated my birthday in Lucerne followed by a visit to The Devil’s Bridge in Switzerland, this year I wanted to celebrate like a queen. And what Continue reading Queen for a Day at Wartburg Castle
Raise your hand if you can point to Luxembourg on a map. Europeans, put your hands down. Ok, who’s left?
Don’t feel bad, Luxembourg – most Americans can’t point to Rhode Island on a map either! Continue reading Bock Casemates of Luxembourg
Travis and I spent our last evening in Paris with Khoasimodo, Esmeralda, and one very special lady – La dame de fer, “The Iron Lady.” As the most visited paid monument in the world, the Lady drew us to her as she does millions of visitors each year. A trip to Paris just wouldn’t be complete without a visit to its most iconic Continue reading Climbing the Eiffel Tower, Paris’s “Lady of Iron”
On the morning of July 14th, 1789, a crowd of angry townsfolk stormed the Bastille, a fortress that had stood near the Seine River in Paris since the 14th century. France was in the midst of an economic crisis; commoners, disillusioned with the monarchy, laid siege to the fortress in rebellion, an event that would ignite the Continue reading Marché Bastille, From Revolution to Farmer’s Market
Last year on Easter we camped at an abandoned castle in Spain, a memory that’s still pretty hard to top. This year we wanted to go somewhere much closer for the holiday, but couldn’t decide where. We wanted it to fit nicely into a 4-day weekend without having to spend all of our vacation traveling to and from. Göttingen is pretty Continue reading Sedlec Ossuary, The Church of Bones
They bear down upon Westminster, the ghost-consecrated Abbey, and the history-crammed Hall, through the arches of the bridge with a rush as the tide swelters round them; the city is buried in a dusky gloom save where the lights begin to gleam and trail with lurid reflections past black velvety- looking hulls – a dusky city of golden gleams. St. Paul’s looms up like an immense bowl reversed, squat, un-English, and undignified in spite of its great size; they dart within the sombre shadows of the Bridge of Sighs, and pass the Tower of London, with the rising moon making the sky behind it luminous, and the crowd of shipping in front appear like a dense forest of withered pines, and then mooring their boat at the steps beyond, with a shuddering farewell look at the eel-like shadows and the glittering lights of that writhing river, with its burthen seen and invisible, they plunge into the purlieus of Wapping.