February 1, 2016 |
On Saturday morning of my first week studying abroad in Australia, I embarked on a daylong tour of Phillip Island. The ultimate draw of the tour was supposed to be the famous "penguin parade," during which penguins come back from sea as the sun sets. Surprisingly, the most memorable part of my day ended up having nothing to do with penguins. Our tour group's day began with a visit to an animal park, where we got to see characteristic Australian animals such as koalas and dingos. We were even able to take selfies with kangaroos.
January 24, 2016 |
I awoke alone at 5:30 a.m. in a six-bed hostel room. It was still pitch black outside, as it typically is in Norway in December. The only sound came from the television, which I'd left on overnight - BBC News covering the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize the previous day. I had been there. Well, I had stood outside Oslo City Hall as the king of Norway arrived for the ceremony, not knowing what the fuss was about until I returned to my big, empty room outside the airport. I had to fly back to Dublin that morning.
January 18, 2016 |
What about Amsterdam? It was a message from my friend. We were both college students spending the semester abroad in separate European cities, and it was the first time our breaks were aligning to spend a long weekend traveling together. I hadn't truly considered Amsterdam as a weekend destination, but she swayed me with Google images of canals and bikes, Dutch pancakes and stroop waffles, and an Airbnb houseboat (the last of which I declined). The high-speed train landed me in Amsterdam in less than four hours, dispatching the French and Belgians on the outskirts of the canal-filled city.
January 17, 2016 |
A ROAD TRIP with a dog is a classic experience, but you don't hear so much about traveling with cats. Felines can be fine traveling companions, though, especially if you prepare them beforehand and take some commonsense precautions to keep them safe and happy. Here's our expert advice on taking cats for a ride - whether your destination is a day away or on the other side of the country. * If you have a few weeks or months before the big move, begin now to accustom your cat to his carrier.
January 11, 2016 |
Published in 1865, Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland enjoyed classic status almost from the moment it hit the presses. Everyone read it, from Queen Victoria to her diplomats and soldiers who carried it to the far corners of the empire. Last year saw the 150th anniversary of its publication, and the launching of a thousand think pieces, podcasts, and reading groups on this most whimsical of children's books. In the fall, the Rosenbach Museum - which merged with the Free Library of Philadelphia in 2013 - celebrated the anniversary with a series of grand events, and even displayed Carroll's original manuscript for a few days.
January 11, 2016 |
My son, Martin, a junior English major at St. Joseph's University, is taking full advantage of the many opportunities that have come his way at SJU - including the study abroad program. He spent the last semester in Galway, Ireland, at the University College of Galway. Being of Irish heritage, and with a great love of Irish folk music (along with a great love for my son), I was quick to jump at the chance for a visit. We spent a special and memorable week together in Galway, Cork, and Dublin.
January 4, 2016 |
As the old saying goes, "A thousand roads lead men forever to Rome. " Those same roads can lead travelers away from the Eternal City toward off-the-beaten-path activities. One recent excursion led us from the crowds, ruins, and basilicas of Rome to the bucolic peace of Tuscany. We had arranged to join a hunt for the coveted trifola d'Alba Madonna - the white truffle. The most precious specimen can sell for $1,000 per ounce; a casino magnate once paid $330,000 for a single 3.3-pound white truffle.
December 28, 2015 |
'A three-hour tour? On a boat?" my brother asked with a raised eyebrow. "What could possibly go wrong?" He walked toward the gangplank ahead of the rest of our group of six, softly humming the Gilligan's Island theme song. A brisk week in November found my brothers and me, along with our significant others, trekking around Iceland in search of culture and relaxation - but mostly, the elusive and entrancing aurora borealis, the Northern Lights. We hadn't traveled together since we were kids, and I felt that seeing something really magical together would help make up for lost time.
December 20, 2015 |
August 1975: Driving south to North Carolina with my mom, my girlfriend (now my wife), and my baby brother. Destination: Davidson College and the start of football camp. There's a lump in my throat as, for the first time, I'm leaving my hometown of Magnolia and starting a new adventure, lured by the opportunity to play college football and continue my education. Two years later, my middle brother will join me at Davidson. Fast-forward 40 years, and we were making the same August trip again, something I had thought about for years.
December 14, 2015 |
At dawn, the dark shapes of seven minarets appeared against the lightening sky of the Neretva valley. When we arrived the night before, Mostar's skyline had been occluded by darkness, but in the morning light of our first day in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the graceful beauty of the medieval fairy tale city resolved into shapes and colors that revealed not only the spires, domes, and bridges of the diverse architecture of a blended culture, but also the...