Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Whistler, British Columbia, Canada

The vert ramp may be the most challenging of all skateboard ramps. In Whistler, it has taken center stage in the skate park that turns a winter wonderland for skiers into a summer destination for those who want to challenge gravity. [2001]

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Aleppo, Syria

His ancestors were domesticated in this very region over 3000 years ago. (No, not the boy, the ass.) Three millennia later, they are still navigating the narrow streets of ancient cities. In fact, they are probably providing essential labor as Aleppo rebuilds after the four-year battle that left the city incapacitated. [1996]

Monday, May 21, 2018

Rome, Italy

Why is it always a surprise to find American fiction being read around the world? Not just read, but read in a language other than English. Think about it: Spanish Steps, European reader, American author, English original, Italian translation. and (probably) Finnish cell phone. Patricia Cornwell and Dr. Kay Scarpetta would be proud. [2002]

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Madrid, Spain

Madrid's Atocha Railway Station is a botanical garden unto itself. The turtle pond has provided a habitat for up to 300 turtles, but it looks like their tenure there will soon end. The stated reasons are overcrowding and sanitation, both of which are problems that could be addressed without closing down the whole exhibit. [2009]

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Crossett, Arkansas, USA

Hamburger and french fries: It's the epitome of American cuisine. Availability: ubiquitous! So, there are two things to look up: (1) the meaning of ubiquitous, (2) the rules for capitalizing French. Two questions follow: (1) What does uniquitous (UNIQUitous) mean? (2) Why do we capitalize French in French fries when they have nothing to do with France? [2018]

Friday, May 18, 2018

Covington, Louisiana, USA

Warm weather comes early to southern Louisiana, and soon it is joined by plumpelicious strawberries. At the center of Louisiana's strawberry kingdom is Ponchatoula, where you might even find an early harvest in late February. This year marks two decades for the family-owned Fletcher Strawberry Farm, but the industry goes back over a century. [2018]

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, USA

If you're off work this morning, go fishing. Certainly, there must be a stream like Marsh Creek near you. Or, sit down at your PlayStation and cast a few from Fishing Planet. Time to vote: Which one sounds like more fun? [2018]