Category: Adventuring

Free Radical: The Lesson of Louise Bryant

Moscow Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

A Russian Revolution Chronicler’s Extraordinary Life I am late to the life of Louise Bryant. I become interested in her long after watching Reds, and reading her husband’s book, Ten Days That Shook the World, and going to Russia, where…

What’s Left of the Berlin Wall?

A portion of the Berlin Wall Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

Seeing Where the World Really Changed It seems almost unimaginable now that for so many years, between 1961 and November 9, 1989, a wall divided East and West Berlin and tourists couldn’t cross easily beneath the Brandenburg Gate, and East…



Great Value Vacations


Cruising Cemeteries around the Globe

Grave marker of Anastasia Romanov at Peter and Paul Cathedral in St. Petersburg, Russia Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

Touring Graveyards for History and Understanding I suppose if you are bashful, a cemetery is a great place to visit given that no one is likely to talk to you much. I like cemeteries for the opportunities they provide to…

Traveling with Witches

traveling with witches

It’s a good thing that the law has evolved a bit since the 1600s given my penchant for visiting shamans, inquiring about witches, and talking directly to higher powers without any male or priestly intercession. In May 1647, the first…

I Say ‘Rice Pudding,’ You Say ‘Milk Tofu’

milk tofu

Lately, I feel like I need a course in restaurant marketing just to help me understand what I order when I order it. My 92-year-old grandmother always chuckles when I mention eating polenta at a restaurant; it’s what she called…

Dizzy Spell

A dizzying ride at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, N.J. Photo credit: M. Ciavardini

This ride at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, N.J. reminds me of three-year-olds twirling themselves to dizziness and then collapsing on the ground in laughter. Why do we go to such great heights to drive ourselves dizzy? When does…