Saturday, February 26, 2011

Apologies...

I just can't get over here to blog.  Too involved now with Facebook, where I post daily, photos included.

Sorry, readers (if any of you are left.)

There's just more interaction over there...and I need that.  FB is the first thing I log onto every morning to see what my friends and family are up to and to keep them abreast of my daily life.

Don't know when I'll be blogging again......

Saturday, January 15, 2011

On NellJean and Hot Tubs

It only takes one.  One new reader with encouraging words.  "Just blog.  Blog about everyday life."  Thank you, NellJean.  I needed that.  (Animation of a face being slapped.  Wasn't that an old commercial for, what, aftershave?)

Ok, so here I sit in my rented winter condo on Miramar Beach in the Panhandle of Florida watching football playoffs for Super Bowl 2011.  A perfect day:  Breakfast at Another Broken Egg, biking in sunny 56 degree weather, sunset cocktails, dinner out, football playoffs...and it isn't over yet...late night hot-tubbing to come.

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More everyday life to come....but NellJean, I hope I can come up with some interesting stuff....didja see my Destin blogging from last winter/spring?





Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year 2011!

At the urging of a couple of blogger friends, I'm back.  But I need to find a focus about which to blog.  I just reread my last year of posts, and even I am bored.   

To fill in the missing time, I've been in Atlanta for three months, renting a little unfurnished apartment near my son's family, which I had fun furnishing with a few Craig's List items and Goodwill finds.  To think I made three trips, a week each, to the North Carolina furniture malls to furnish my newly-built house back in the '90's only to give half of that stuff away when I downsized twelve years later...not the best financial move when I discover that you can find some really nice stuff on Craig's List...especially dining room furniture, some of the most costly to buy.  I happily discovered I didn't need that much and lived simply with a bed I'd bought for my son's guest room, two little nightstands I found on Craig's List, a borrowed TV, and three chairs, two chests in the living room, a few lamps, and silk plants and picture frames from Goodwill (.99 - 4.99 each.)  Didn't even need a table and chairs for those months!

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So I'm back to blogging (maybe.)

If I can find a focus.

I don't really want to do the random thoughts thing anymore.  I'd love to do an "all travel blog."  I blogged a bit about the Panhandle when I stayed the winter there last year, and about my son's area in northeast Atlanta, and about my city condo and suburban place.  But I don't really "travel" anymore.  Did a lot of that in my 30's and 40's, and now prefer to "relocate" during the winter months.

Also blogged a lot about my biking passion.  But haven't been able to bike the last couple of months here in Atlanta, as it has been way too cold.

Tomorrow I go to Florida. 

Maybe I'll think of a longterm topic there.

(If you are still reading me, I wonder why....just a glutton for punishment?  But thanks, glad you're here!)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Solo Travel in Paris

Posted on September 1, 2010 - by solotraveler
Solo Travel in Paris – Great tips from a Francophile


Welcome to guest blogger Priscilla Pilon, author of the blog Weekend In Paris. Priscilla is a Francophile, Freelance writer and marketer who is passionate about all travel, with an emphasis on Paris. All photos courtesy of Priscilla Pilon

Solo Travel in Paris poses no problems for me, nor should it for you. Pre-planning mixed with a hint of spontaneity will combine to set the stage for a fantastic trip for one to Paris!

For Starters
A must, in my opinion, is to book a hotel with breakfast included. This ensures that you will start off your day with a fabulous cup of coffee while getting mentally prepared to speak a foreign language. Practice French with the morning desk clerk, plan your routes, and seek advice from fellow map wielding travelers in the lobby who will hopefully offer insider tips for your day ahead.

Stay Busy
Organized activities focus your day and help break the ice meeting others, making solo travel something to be embraced, not dreaded! Sign up for a session learning the history of chocolate making (tasting included) at La Maison du Chocolat, book a wine and cheese tasting at O Chateau, or head for a concert at la Cité de la musique. These experiences are great alternatives that give you the opportunity to mingle with locals and tourists alike while experiencing something nouveau.

Solo in a Group
Craving dinner companionship at the end of the day? I have never been, but hear from a very reliable friend, Stuart, that dinner at Jim Hayne’s house is quite an adventure. Strangers from all over the world show up solo or in groups and engage in repartee while dining on fabulous home-cooked food. Jim seeks a donation only to defray the cost of the meal. Anything extra reportedly gets passed along to various artistic charities. The suggested donation is 25 Euros and there is no need to bring a thing – wine included! Reservations can be made at Jim-Haynes.com. What better venue for solo travelers to not feel alone in a foreign city!

Incognito and Introspective?
More traditional ways for parties of one to tour Paris incognito or to meet other people include museums and cafés. Museums are an obvious choice because you have the option to take a guided tour to be with others or purchase headphones and go on your own if you are feeling especially introspective. Cafés and Brasseries are the preferred places to eat when solo in Paris – you will see many a Parisian dining alone outside (no matter the weather) facing the street where it’s the best people-watching in the world!

Whether traveling alone for business or choice, Paris is one of the easiest places to amuse oneself. The Joie de Vivre is infectious – go for it!

My note:  This is so absolutely cool:  http://www.jim-haynes.com/.   I vow to do this the next time I am in Paris!  I wish every city had something like this!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tall Ships in Chicago

The Tall Ships have arrived at Navy Pier.  Here they are, right outside my window!

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Opening Day parade of the tall ships on Lake Michigan


Close up of one of the tall ships


Shooting off the cannon


Circling past Navy Pier and out onto the lake again...


...past the lighthouse.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Flowers in the City

Some people have this impression that the city is all concrete.  Maybe many cities are, but Chicago is known for its lakefront beaches and biking/jogging path (some 20 miles of it north to south) completely dedicated to the recreation of its citizens (no shipping, commercial industry), its parks, and its FLOWERS!  Mayor Daley has done a great job of beautifying the city and at one point (not sure if it is still true) Chicago was leading the pack in "green cities."  He started the green movement in Chicago by constructing a roof garden on city hall, encouraging other buildings to follow suit.

These are a sampling some of the flowering planters and landscaped areas around the city....


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And these are just examples of planters around Streeterville, my neighborhood.  All along Michigan Avenue are center planters filled with seasonal foliage;  window boxes and planters hang from many buildings on many streets in the city;  the developing River Walk (a subject for a future post) displays gardens and plantings;  and rooftop gardens abound in our city.