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Frequent Travelers Top Six Essential Pieces of Gear

GillAquino photography.

Frequent travelers and folks who love to travel, know that the difference between a good trip and a remarkable trip can sometimes come down to having the right stuff in your suitcase. For example, not having packed the wide-brimmed hat during your tour around the rim of the Grand Canyon might have left you more worried about your fiery sunburn than marveling at the incredible sights before you.

The specifics of packing for a trip will largely depend on where you are heading and what you are planning to do. Nonetheless, there are a few essential pieces of gear for those of you who are frequent travelers.

A Quality E-Reader

Reading those same boring magazines on planes can get old quickly, but packing around several books will take a toll on your back as any traveler knows that books are heavy. A great way to carry around plenty of reading material for an extended trip is with an e-reader. During those long, rainy days while at the beach, a good book or two on your e-reader will help keep you occupied.

Noise Cancelling Headphones

When travelling, the wide range of sounds from roosters crowing at 3 AM to the sound of traffic below your hotel room, to a crying baby on a crowded flight can definitely be disconcerting. A quality pair of noise cancelling headphones will help you to concentrate when you need to concentrate and sleep when you need to sleep, both of which are important while travelling.

Collapsible and Reusable Water Bottle

Nothing is quite so insane as paying $4 to $10 dollars for a bottle of water. When travelling, buying bottled water can quickly add up to a pretty hefty expense. However, you don´t necessarily want to have to tote around a heavy Nalgene bottle when you are not planning on using it all the time. Fortunately, there are several collapsible water bottles that use less space while still saving you from having to spend a small fortune for water during your trip. This is a must have for frequent travelers.

Portable Electronic Charger

It is always nice to have a phone with you when travelling for any unexpected emergencies that may arise or simply to call home to let everyone know that you are doing okay. However, when moving from hotel to hostel to bed and breakfast to campground, you might not have time to keep your phone and other electronics properly charged. Consider bringing along a small, portable electronic charger so that no matter where you are, the essential tech gear always has enough “juice.”

Packing Cubes

When living out of a backpack or a suitcase for an extended period of time, it can get frustrating when you have to literally unpack your whole wardrobe just to find your toothbrush that had inconveniently fallen to the bottom of your bag. One easy way to avoid the hassles that come with being disorganized when living out of a suitcase is by investing in packing cubes. These small cubes fit snuggly into any larger pack or suitcase and allow you to stay organized. You could even pack a travel cube for each day of travel so that you can stay organized in your mini suitcase-closet.

A Quality Travel Backpack

By far, the most important piece of gear for any frequent traveler is the pack that carries all of his or her stuff. While suitcases might do okay for quick business trips where you´re only travelling from the airport to the hotel and vice versa, for any sort of extensive travel with multiple stopping points along the way, you will most likely want to choose a travel backpack which can more easily be carried (instead of dragged) around. You can find a guide to the best travel backpacks here.

Frequent travelers; advice. Creative Commons license photo by GillAquino.

Top Six Essential Gear for Frequent Travelers

With the right pieces of essential gear, and a quality travel backpack to keep your things organized, frequent travelers can keep their focus on having fun and exploring the world around them instead of worrying about what they forgot at home.

For more information on the great outdoors please visit our guest blogger Scott Moses’ website Live Once, Live Wild. You will find all you need to know about how to get the most out of the great outdoors. From top backpacking trips around the world, to the best gear, to some cool survival secrets we will do your best to help you live once and live wild!




Kerala Boats – Travel Through The Intracoastal Waterways By Boat

Oil painting by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar titled "Kerala Waterway Workers" (c)2017

Oil painting by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar titled “Kerala Waterway Workers” (c)2017

Kerala boats are unique to the Malabar Coast and dot the intracoastal waterways that lie parallel to the Andaman sea. These boats are a significant part of the local economy as they bring important commercially grown produce such as rice, coconuts, bananas and spices to the coast for distribution. These boats are capable of carrying the equivalent of 3 trucks.

Oil painting by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar titled "Kerala Waterway Workers" (c)2017

Oil painting by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar titled “Kerala Waterway Workers” (c)2017

These Kerala boats are called vallams in the Malayalam language, native to Kerala. Vallams are canoes made from local wood called ‘Anjali’ or jack-wood and deeply oiled with a black resin from the kernel of cashews, a locally grown produce. The black silhouette of the canoe on the water is a signature of the waterways. Racing canoes are much longer and can hold up to a hundred oarsmen. These often have more prominent prows with carvings and paint. But it is the common Kerala boat that I loved seeing on the still waters being pulled along by poles and paddles.


Oil painting by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar, Kerala Boat

Oil painting by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar, Kerala Boat.

These two oil paintings on canvas of Kerala Boats measure 36″ x 18″. The solitary boat moored alongside the river is typical of the boats used to move people and cargo. The oil painting with the two workers transporting wooden planks was captured after sunset on the waterway to Alleppey. We were traveling north on a Government Ferry from Quilon (Kollam) after spending considerable time on Lighthouse Beach in Trivandrum.

Kettuvallam (Converted rice barge for Kerala Tourism); Kerala Boat, Houseboat; Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar photography; copyright 2002

Kettuvallam – Converted rice barge moored alongside a rice paddy on the waterway to Alleppey, Kerala India. Photography by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar (c)2002.


Kettuvallams are the large houseboats covered in intricate bamboo and palm leaves. Everything is tied together with coir or rope made from coconut fibers. From what I recall, there is not a single nail or screw holding these canoe planks together…just the coir. These larger Kerala boats are in the 60-70′ length with a 15′ beam. The houseboats are converted barges and designed for the tourist industry. The pace is slow and leisurely, which is ideal for anyone birdwatching, photographing the local riverscape or wishing to just take in the journey and relax all day long and night.

Kerala Waterways are hot, humid and immensely beautiful under the blazing Indian sun. It is easy to spot kingfishers, sea eagles, water snakes and water rats. Fish jump and birds skim the surface seeking insects.

Along the shore people wash dishes, shower or bathe. Bamboo outhouses line the river. The waters are brackish. Salt water from the sea doesn’t penetrate the intracoastal waters due to a natural and artificially supported breakwater. The lakes, lagoons and rivers are fed by mountain streams inland.

At night, just after sunset, women in a stunning array of jewel tones sarees walk single file along the river. The rich color against the palm frond backdrop is perfectly reflected in the silvery water is simply beautiful to behold.

Kerala boats; women in sarees along the Kerala waterways India. Photography by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar

Kerala boats; women in sarees along the Kerala waterways India. Photography by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar (c)2002.

Converted rice barge for Kerala Tourism. Photography by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar (c)2002.

Kerala boat: Converted rice barge for Kerala Tourism. Photography by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar (c)2002.

Scenic Kerala Waterways at sun down. Photography by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar (c)2002.

Scenic Kerala Waterways at sun down. Photography by Anne Marie Peterson-Kolatkar (c)2002.

Hotel Del – Coronado Island, San Diego – 2012 Christmas Tree

Visiting some of the more famous trees at Christmas time is such a pleasure. Click the tree several times to see the full image and zoom in on some of the decor. Happy Holidays, everyone!

This is a photo of the main Christmas tree in the lobby of the Hotel Del, Coronado Island, San Diego, CA.

Hotel Del Christmas Tree 2012

Terranea Resort and Beauty in the Eye of the Dessert Beholder

I can’t help myself; I see beauty everywhere, especially in Nature. Next, I see beauty in objects that Nature inspired, like cake. And I take photo after photo of those moments that catch my eye because I love to share, make greeting cards or paintings from them and of course, they provide me with thousands of vivid memories or inspiration.

It was a beautiful day on the coast. Sea birds, birds of prey, dolphins and whales spouting in the water made it a magical day atop the bluffs in Palos Verde, CA. It wasn’t quite happy hour; more like afternoon tea. A coffee and small bite of something decadent was just the ticket and Sea Beans Cafe inside the hotel grounds is just the thing a traveler needs for a little pick-me-up. Here are some of my images from my visit to this cafe at Terranea in January.

This is a photo of the chalkboard menu inside the Sea Beans Cafe at Terranea Resort.

This has YUMMM written all over it.

This is a photo of the dessert display case inside the Sea Beans Cafe at Terranea Resort.

What's not to like? I'll take one of everything.

This is a photo of candy signage in front of a tray of gourmet chocolates.

Stop and think about this for a moment. Read the sign again and let your imagination take flight. Yes, two servings will help confirm that you got the tasting notes correct!

This is a photo of handmade chocolate cups filled with Tiramisu dessert at Sea Beans Cafe in Terranea Resort.

It does more than pick you leaves you changed forever.

This is a photo of a pecan tartlette.

For times when you feel a bit nutty.

This is a photo of a a fruit tartlette at Sea Beans Cafe in Terranea Resort.


Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas Nevada – Fun Stuff I Saw

Inside the hotel, there are numerous areas that have been decorated in a fantastical manner. The artsy touches and designs change with the season and are always spectacular, designed to be whimsical and take one’s breath away. As my visit coincided with Mother’s Day and Springtime, the presentation was along the lines of “April showers bring May flowers, what do Mayflowers bring?” –the answer might surprise you. Take a look!

Handpainted umbrellas with large colorful poppies hang upside down from wires in an artistic show, under the glass ceiling of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Icelandic Poppy Painted Umbrellas Overhead

This is a photo of hand painted umbrellas hanging from various wires in the ceiling of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV.

Poppies always delight the eye

This is a photo of umbrellas hanging from the ceiling of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

This is a photo of hand painted umbrellas in detail as they hang from the ceiling of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Seriously, what's not to love?

This is a photo of hand painted umbrellas as viewed through an archway into a garden.

I want to have cocktails under these umbrellas!

This is a photo of the garden scene behind the concierge desk at the Bellagio Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV.

Maybe after a few cocktails I'd feel like Alice...

This is a photo of large planters with flowers tucked into a large fountain basin at the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Genius! No need to throw out your old fountain, stuff it full of planters. But make sure they've had a few cocktails first.

This is an image of a vintage Schwinn bicycle resting against a ticket booth in a flower bed inside the Bellagio Hotel and Casino Conservatory of Flowers, as part of an artistic display.

No locks needed

This is a photo of the heron bird sculptures made from moss, seashells and paint inside the Conservatory of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Bigger than life herons

This is an image of a floral sculpture at the Conservatory in the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Floral Sculpture or Floral Painting?

This is a detail of the floral sculpture inside the Conservatory at the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

All I could think of when I saw this masterpiece was, "Wow!"

This is a photo of the painting referenced by the floral sculpture inside the Conservatory of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

The floral sculpture is inspired by this painting by David Hockney. The original is inside the Bellagio Hotel in the Fine Art Gallery.

This is a detail of the floral sculpture inside the Conservatory of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Someone gets an "A+" for artistic cleverness. How I wish it was me...

This is a photo of a handcrafted butterfly that hangs from the ceiling inside the Conservatory of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Butterfly Magic!

This is a photo of a large pink butterfly resting against a handcrafted tree inside the Conservatory of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Butterflies are best seen from a distance. Up close, they are quite creepy.

This is a photo of a handcrafted tree with pink blossoms and butterflies inside the Conservatory of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Blossoms and much more enchantment can a person handle?

This is a photo of my daughter Arabella inside the Conservatory of the Bellagio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, NV.

Arabella inside the Bellagio Conservatory

Terranea Resort – Things That Catch The Eye

This site has provided me a platform to write and show image of all that I love: the beauty of the outdoors, the beauty of the indoors, food and wine and more. Terranea captured my eye in many ways from the wide sweeping views to minute decorating details in the resort. Take this wall in the spa for example. I think it is made from saki cups that have a hole bored out in the bottom for attaching them to the wall in a concentric manner to replicate the white blossoms of spring. Dang! That is clever in my mind!

This is a photo of what appears to be white ceramic saki cups nestled into each other and attached to the wall in a formation of scattered blossoms.

White Ceramic Blossoms at the Spa in Terranea Resort

This is a photo of the spa wall from a distance to capture the look of white blossoms cascading from the ceiling towards the floor. The blossoms appear to be made from white saki cups.

Spa wall of blossoms

Other things that caught my eye there:

This is a photo of an oil painting of a sailboat at the dock framed in gold.

Plein Aire Impressionism Abounds at Terranea Resort

This is a photo of an oil painting (Plein Air Painting of the Cove at Terranea Resort, Palo Verda, CA.)

Plein Air Painting of the Cove at Terranea Resort, Palo Verda, CA.

And the outdoors are decorated here and there, too:

This is a photo of glass Morrocan Hanging Lamps hanging by the pool area.

Morrocan Hanging Lamps

Outdoors I spotted many beautiful plants, flowers and details.

This is a photo of the center of a cactus plant.

Ruffled Succulent

This is a photo of a lucious lime green cactus plant.

Geometry in nature casts a spell!

Florist setting up a magnificent outdoor wedding let me poke around with my camera.

This is a photo of the center of a white lilly in a wedding arrangement.

Oh, Lily! Where are your stamens?

This is a photo of white hydrangeas in a wedding arrangement at Terranea Resort, Palos Verde, CA.

Pure. Fresh. White Hydrangea.

This is a close-up photo of the center of a decorative white cabbage.

When did cabbage start looking like a rose?

This is a photo of a wedding arrangement at Terranea Resort, Palos Verde, CA.

Timeless arrangements...

I hope you enjoyed some of these images. I could do an entire month of posting on the artwork hanging in the resort there is enough to fill a museum! Does anyone know if the artwork is by local artists?

India’s Rich Cuisine – Part II

in Food, Hotels, India      tags:

Breakfast in Jaipur highlighted the foods of India’s south – dosas, rice and lentil batter pancakes made on a dark griddle.  It was served on top of a green banana leaf, on a platter formed to resemble an artist’s palette with wells indented in which to put railway chutney, curry leaf, tomato and coconut chutney.  Inside was a scoop of hot spicy potato mash.  Delicate and delicious!

Other Southern Indian breakfast items included the small white idlis, made of steamed rice flour, and medhu vada, a dense doughnut made of lentil.  Also, sago vada- chick pea gram flour soaked for 24 hours, then ground fine, formed into balls and fried.

Lunch at the Maharajah in Jaipur treated us to the desert cuisine of Rajasthan.  Laal Mas, lamb curry and Kher Sangri, the skinny desert beans and berries, dried, then rehydrated and cooked with onions and spices, was a superb introduction to the region, and to dishes we had never heard of before.  We ordered a rice dish and mint (methi) parantha bread to accompany it.

At the Ranthambhore Taj Hotel, our stay was marred by unexpected monsoon like rains for 2 days.  I struck up a conversation with Nagendra Singh, the General Manager, and soon I was in his office for 2 hours of talking about our mutual love of Indian cooking.  I told him how delicious the food had been the first night, and soon he was calling in the chef and his assistants, bringing ingredients and equipment to show me, such as a wooden butter churn, dried desert berries and beans, gourds, carom seeds for digestion and for stopping bleeding after childbirth. That afternoon was my favorite memory of India.   I was furnished photocopies of each day’s menu, which I transcribe below:

Monday lunch:
Bhindi Jalfrezi – okra fried, tomato, onion, ginger, garlic

Bainghan Bhurta- eggplants baked in charcoal oven, stripped, crushed, with spices and onion

Paneer Achari – farmer’s cheese with pickle and mango sauce from pickling

Pittod Pullao – specific to that region, rice pilaf with gram flour-chickpea, oil, salt, chili powder, aniseeds, curry

Ghosht Saag Nala – Mutton/goat bones in a bright green sauce comprised of mustard greens

Makkhan Wada – refined wheat flour, sugar, ghee, cream dessert

Monday dinner
Paneer Mutter – green peas and cottage cheese

Cabbage Tamater – cumin seeds and grated cabbage strands, tomato shreds

Ghiya Kofta – white gourd, green coriander powder, crushed cottage cheese, crushed potato, balls in tomato gravy

Kadhi – thin chick pea flour gruel, yogurt, coriander powder, turmeric, mustard seeds, garlic, onions, asafetida, made into balls

Vegetable Biryani – light, fluffy rice with small bits of vegetables

Moong dal Halwa- intense, sweet, grainy dessert

Tuesday lunch
Bharwan Capsicum Stuffed with Cheese & Tomato, meltingly delicious and light

Paneer Palak – light farmer cheese in delicate green mustard/spinach sauce

Mutter Tamater Curry – peas, tomato

Chutneys & Tamarind sweet sauce

Pullao – with vegetables, beige, almonds

Keema Liver Masala – ground meat with small vegetables

Tuesday dinner
Murg Methi Malai – chicken with cream gravy, spiced with fenugreek, ginger, garlic, onions, turmeric, tomatoes and red chilies

Gobhi Tamater tomatoes with other vegetables

Sarson ka Saag – spicy mustard/spinach greens with turnip, dill, radish, ginger, green chili

Paneer Tikka Lababdar – farmer’s cheese

Lemon Rice- yellow, light and fluffy

Seviyon di Kheer dessert

We were rolling our eyes with pleasure every time we took a bite.  As soon as Nagendra found out we adored the chef’s food, he organized an outdoor cooking demonstration, under the veranda eaves.  A stainless steel cart with clay tandoor on it was rolled out, and eggplants were impaled on a 4’ skewer and roasted.  After removing the skins, the eggplant was combined with spices and onions and garlic and presented as an appetizer.

There are, according to Nagendra, 5 key ingredients that a cook is able to get anywhere in India: meat (lamb/chicken), clarified butter (ghee), salt, whole red chili, water, garlic.  The chef whipped up a curry using these simple ingredients.

Lastly, he combined chick pea flour with yogurt and oil to form a dough.  He rolled it into tubes and cooked these in water until it foamed.  Then he made a curry with the cooking water and spices.  All were delicious.

While we were in India, we didn’t have one bad meal, only good, delicious, and ambrosially delicious meals!  I won’t recount all the meals we had, but the other really good ones happened at the Lake Palace Hotel.

Chicken Murgh ka Sole, and Mixed Vegetables. This was accompanied by mango pickle, green coriander chili hot sauce, and chutney.  We brought the chef out to compliment him.  He has promised to send the recipes by e-mail, which I will share if I manage to obtain them.

In Jodphur for our 2010 Thanksgiving feast, we enjoyed a blend of north and south India.  Cauliflower and potato stir fried with chili, coriander,coconut, mustard and curry leaves (south) and gosht baghar (north),well marinated lamb cooked slowly with yogurt, mustard seeds, fenugreek and red chilies. Scrumptious cheese paratha accompanied our meal.

Culinary regards,

Claudia and Gail

The Problems With Indian Infrastructure

India has some of the worst infrastructure we’ve ever seen.  Below is a brief summary of key elements.

Transport – Rail
Rail – India Railways’ network stretches 40,000 miles, moves 7B pax per year and 830 million tons of cargo (6-7-10 IHT).  Yet it’s creaking and lightweight tracks, old cars, slow speeds and overburdened carriages mean each Indian locomotive can only haul 5,000 tons of cargo (vs. 20 for US, China or Russia). To subsidize passengers, India charges 4 times US and 2x China’s cost.  Japan is providing $5B low-cost loans to help India buy Japanese equipment for the western corridor between Mumbai and Delhi.  The World Bank is considering $2.4B loans for the eastern corridor, Punjab to Calcutta, which is projected to be completed by 2017.

Transport – Roads
Our on-site analysis:  India’s 2 million miles of roads are totally degraded, crowded, rutted, and slow.  Cattle stop in the middle of the road and driving is hazardous and largely uncontrolled by signals.  It’s “every man for himself”.  Diesel fumes, constant honking of horns mean a miserable experience getting from point A to point B.  India’s Golden Quadrilateral Project linking Delhi, Calcutta, Madras and Mumbai is the only relief.  But the $1.33 toll is more than most Indians earn in a day (12-6-10 IHT)  India has the world’s highest accident rate, which rose from 80,000 in 2005 to 118,000 last year (6-8-10 IHT)

5-21-10 IHT:  Only 60% of municipal waste is collected in India.  Just 30% of urban sewage is treated.  Only 269 of 5,161 of India’s towns and cities have modern sewage systems, while roughly 33% of the country’s 1.2 B people have no access to a toilet, according to B. Pathak, founder of Sulabh International Social Service Organization.  The rural areas are riddled with roadside trash in heaps or dumped in the countryside.

4-23-10 IHT:  “India is drowning in garbage.  The cities alone generate over 100 million tons of solid waste per year.  Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh has said that if there were a Nobel Prize for filth, India would win it!”  According to citizen watch groups, waste-energy schemes are riddled with corruption thus it is important to instill civic consciousness for everyone to clean up their space.

India relies on coal for over 50% of electric generation.  It imports over 70% of its oil needs.  400 million Indians lack reliable electricity.  India was among the largest producers of greenhouse gases according to a 2007 government report.  India is constructing nuclear plants.  It enjoys 250-300 sunny days/year but coal costs 4 rupees/kwh vs. 17 ru for photovoltaics.

Health and Poverty
The Indian government spends 5% of its $1.2T GDP on health care, focusing on primary care like immunizations.  Its per capita expenditure is $34.  Less than 33% of China (7-6-10 IHT).  Private sector accounts for 80% of total spending.  India only has .7 hospital beds/1000 people vs. world average of 4/1000.  But it’s becoming an emerging medical tourism destination.

According to Harvard School of Public Health study of 54 low and middle income countries, only 15% of Indian women 15-49 are obese.  Obesity is primarily a problem of the rich (Times of India 11-27-10).  Average body mass index is only 21, comparable to other 3rd world nations such as Ethiopia, Bangladesh, Nepal and Cameroon.  The study found an association between BMI and wealth.

India’s poverty and hunger indexes remain dismal, with 42% of Indian children under 5 being underweight.  The 8 poorest of 28 states and 7 territories (421 million people) have more in poverty than 26 of the poorest nations in Africa. (8-10-10 IHT).

Cities and Environmental Degradation
As April 2010 study by McKinsey indicates between 2010 and 2030, 250 million Indians will migrate to the cities, a figure that exceeds the current total population of all but 3 countries (China, India and US).  India will have 68 cities with a population over 1 million vs. 35 cities in all Europe (5-21-10 IHT)  Delhi currently stands at 14 million, with 7.5 million cars and is polluted with grey smoke of wood fires and exhaust.  According to a recent government study of 127 cities, 80% had over 1 pollutant exceeding air quality standards.

Around 25% of India’s people live along the coast.  According to Asian Development Bank, 26% of India’s shoreline suffers from serious erosion (8-27-10 IHT).  Livelihoods of fishermen, farmers and houses are threatened by rising seas and agriculture is already in crisis.  Population growth and degradation are going to make India a very polluted place in the 21st century.

CNN’s headlines last night indicated “India requires quantum leap in investment.” (12/3/10)

India most of all needs investment in water supply, sewage, roads, airports, and highways to take its rightful place in the world.  From the levels of disorganization we witnessed, we’re not sure this is going to go well.

Claudia and Gail

Port of San Pedro, Los Angeles, CA – Around The Cruise Ship Terminal

This is a photo of the Vincent Thomas Bridge in the Port of San Pedro, Los Angeles, CA.

Vincent Thomas Bridge - Port of San Pedro, Los Angeles, CA

Our friends Ralph and Marjorie are serious cruisers. They surpassed the 50-cruises mark long ago and are nearing their 75th. The vast majority of their cruises have left from San Pedro. Over the years, they have seen the port develop into an attractive area with a few noteworthy things to see, places to eat and enjoy Happy Hour among other things. This series will cover the highlights of our explorations. A word of warning: The Port of San Pedro is not a place you tell your friends they have to see…in fact, you might tell your friends to avoid it entirely but if you are cruising from that location, they will want some tips on how to make the most of their visit.

Up next…
Crown Plaza Hotel
Mishi’s Strudel Cafe
Port’s O Call – Happy Hour
Off The Vine – Wine and Cheese Shop
Red Trolley Line
Terranea Resort and Spa in Palos Verde
Sacred Grounds Coffee Cafe
Whale and Ale Pub
Catalina Island Ferry Terminal
Terminal “Walkabout” – Bellagio styled fountains and public art
Ante’s Restaurant – Serving Dalmatian food since 1943

Stay tuned for pictures and video!

BBQ News Update

in BBQ, Food, Travel      tags: , , , ,

BBQ News

Must-read article about barbecue in the January/February issue of Westways Magazine (from AAA), including an essential description of the basic regional types of barbecue in the U.S. and Caribbean/Mexico.  Note all you purists — different strokes for different folks when it comes to flavors and sauces (or lack thereof)!  “My way is the only way” doesn’t cut it in BBQ!  🙂

(but everyone has his or her favorite, we understand)