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My Moment of Zen (with a Zen Master)

During our tour of Japan we got to meet with two different Buddhist monks, each representing different branches of Buddhism within Japan. These meetings were interesting on several different levels. I studied Eastern philosophies and religions a lot when I...

Ah, Kyoto!

Our tour was supposed to avoid cities and focus on “culture”, etc., but Japan is not some third world country. Everywhere you go you see a bustling atmosphere, lots of office buildings, stores and restaurants. Let me tell you, the …

A Fukushima Refugee Tale

One thing that was interesting in Kanazawa is when we got to meet with a Fukushima refugee couple. They currently live in Kanazawa and have a restaurant where we had lunch. (It was a vegan restaurant. I’m probably the only …

Gomen’nasai!

That’s Japanese for “sorry!” I left my PC in my bag while we went to the mountains and then had issues posting via my smartphone. Pilot error, of course. I’ll write more later. We’re off to see the garden again, …

2018-11-05 Day One and Two in Tokyo!

We arrived yesterday afternoon with a – thankfully – rather uninteresting flight. Actually, the one thing interesting about this United flight is that we experienced some of the worst airplane food we’ve had in some years. The food was almost …

T-1 days and Waiting!

Only a few hours to go until we leave for Japan! I tried to schedule a Lyft for 4:45am, but didn’t get any takes, so we’re going to the airport by ordinary taxi. Oh, well. My last post left on …

T – 4 Days and Counting!

We’re getting down to the finer details for our upcoming trip to Japan – making sure our camera SD cards are empty and the camera lenses are clean; charging all our electronic devices; making sure we have the proper cables; …

T-6 days and counting!

Wow, time is flying! Par for the course for all our other Overseas Adventure (OAT) Tours, as the date for our trip grows closer we’ve now had a chance to talk to our country guide, Hiroshi Ninigawa, and have received …
Heading Back to Europe!

Heading Back to Europe!

Hola! Well, it’s travel time again! Actually, travel time is past due for my wife and I, as we haven’t been out of the country since September 2017! This was a long stretch for us. We normally try to do …
Europe: The Road Ahead

Europe: The Road Ahead

Only 3 days left before our departure. Yay! Long air travel is never something to look forward to. On Monday the 11th we will fly out mid-morning to JFK airport in New York, enjoy a leisurely 2.5 hour layover, then …
The Spanish Lisp

The Spanish Lisp

We depart for Portugal and Spain the day after tomorrow! Tick, tock! Time is flying. Given the really bad news we all received this week about celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain and our upcoming journey, I thought the following quote was …
Ola Lisboa (almost)!

Ola Lisboa (almost)!

Well, we won’t really be in Portugal till Tuesday, but what the heck, mentally we are out of here! We spent the afternoon pouring through more Youtube videos of the places we will be visiting and the hotels, pousadas and …
Lisboa! We Be Here!

Lisboa! We Be Here!

Hi folks! We arrived yesterday without any travel hassles, which was very nice! I only got about 45 minutes sleep on the plane and Lisa didn’t get much either, so by the time we hit the ack last night, we …
He who controls the spice…

He who controls the spice…

The old science fiction book, Dune, has a saying that goes, “He who controls the spice, controls the universe.” This could hold true for Portugal, for its history is full of hard-fought battles, royal family strife, subterfuge and local stuggle,...
On the road to Evora

On the road to Evora

On the bus for overland trip to Evora and our first pousada! Last night I had a wonderful grilled octopus and an excellent red wine. Most of the wine here is blended. This is because many years ago they planted …
Portuguese Cooking Class

Portuguese Cooking Class

Today was the city tour and a Portuguese Cooking class. The food is quite simple and simply delicious! It’s getting warmer, tomorrow we will be in the 90’s! We also will leave Portugal and head to Carmona, Spain. Evora is …
Ah, Spain! Ah, Ronda!

Ah, Spain! Ah, Ronda!

Wow, I finally have a little time to start to organize our photos, videos and write something to my blog. We have been very busy! Lisa and I really enjoyed Portugal and were happy to finally get to visit the …
Last Day in Madrid!

Last Day in Madrid!

Hi folks! I have to make this a quick post. I may get a chance to say more later. It’s hard to believe our trip is almost over. We leave on a flight tomorrow morning at (ugh) 6:00am. We won’t …
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