Cruising with Billy

On deck Independance of the Seas

  Billy is in full raconteur mode. “He was a lad about 17 and he’d been in a wheel chair all his life. He was traveling with his parents on one of my tours to Amsterdam and I volunteered to keep him busy one night while they went out on the town. I rolled him

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Chasing Marc Chagall

Chagalls grave St Paul de Vence France

“If I create from the heart, nearly everything works; If from the head, almost nothing.”  Marc Chagall It is late September and I am back in France for the third time this year. The summer tourist crowd has thinned a bit but the roses are still blooming. Cyclists are out in force, taking advantage of

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Historic English Gardens

Zinnia garden at Hampton Court Palace

  I love history.  I love gardens.  Combining these two things is nothing short of a Meg Ryan moment for me (for those of you who don’t get the reference, watch the movie When Harry Met Sally).  Happily, I had more opportunities than I could possibly take advantage of during our English summer of 2014–

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Love Is a Wee Dram

The Barrel Room Edradour Scotland

If you love a good single malt scotch, a trip to Scotland’s Whisky Trail should definitely be on your travel bucket list. (By the way, they spell it without the e, as in “whisky”.)  The cheery, friendly (and dare I say quirky?) people of the Highlands are extraordinary folk and after a thousand years of

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The Wines of Burgundy

Chassagne Montrachet Burgundy France

  What is a “White Burgundy”?  For that matter, what exactly is a red Burgundy wine?  We visited Cote de Beaune recently, in the heart of Burgundy (aka “Bourgogne”) and I learned something new: While true, its a bit over-simplistic to state that a Burgundy wine is simply a wine from Burgundy.  In fact, it

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Moorish Gardens in Spain

Reales Alcazares Gardens Seville Spain

I love indoor/outdoor living spaces.  Did you know that we have the Moors to thank for the whole idea?  The Moorish garden always begins with a beautiful courtyard, or patio (a distinctly Moorish concept) and spreads outward to carefully tended spaces beyond the walls of the main dwelling. Picture, if you will, a long courtyard

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piri-piri chicken

We had been in Portugal less than 48 hours when I discovered a new favorite food: anything flavored with the Portuguese spice, piri-piri (also known as “peri-peri”).  Like my daughter Kate, when I find something I love, I eat it constantly until I get tired of it, so my husband (the Chef) is now whipping

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