From My Travel Bucket List

I’m one of those people who like to read travel books like “1000 Places to See Before You Die” or “The Geography of Bliss.” Book CoverSometimes I find myself planning my next vacation when I’m not even done with my current one. Well, not really planning but dreaming. Where will I go next?

There are so many places I feel I should go – places I’ve read or heard about all my life. Places like Venice, Rome, and Florence; Madrid, Barcelona, and Seville. I’ve never been to Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Vienna, Oslo, or even Prague. Then there are the places which intrigue me, the activities or people which sound more than just interesting – exciting, challenging, and even educational.

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Here are just a few of those places I’d like to go, in no particular order, taken right off My Travel Bucket List!

The items may change as the years go by, whether by necessity or choice, but I look forward to dreaming about each trip in the days to come. What’s on your Travel Bucket List?

THE BOSTON PUBLIC MARKET | Edible Boston

Whenever I visit San Francisco, I make a trip to its Ferry Building.  Now Boston has its own market full of unique and artisan vendors, and I don’t have to travel as far. Located near Haymarket and Quincy Market, the Boston Public Market is unique – it’s a culinary adventure (you can eat gourmet donuts, local cheeses,  fresh pasta or drink locally made tea, coffee, or hot chocolate). It’s a a gourmet lunch spot (try the smoothies, smoked fish, Vietnamese sandwiches, or ice cream). It’s a wedding and hostess gift go-to (buy wine, jams, cutting boards made from stone, and bowls turned from wood). It’s a market (fill your basket with flowers, locally grown vegetables, meat, and fish). Read more about it here:

Source: THE BOSTON PUBLIC MARKET | Edible Boston

Are You a Coke Fan?

Do you like Coke? If you’re in Atlanta with little (or even big) kids you won’t be able to escape a trip to the World of Coca-Cola. Billed as an “experience,” it’s really a 4-D movie, museum, and taste testing place all-in-one. 

IMG_0634_2.jpgAs part of our whirlwind tour of Atlanta, we spent a couple of hours learning about the history of the soft drink and seeing all kinds of Coca Cola memorabilia.

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The best and most memorable part of our experience was tasting the different soft drinks (over 100 according to the website), from various Coke iterations to other fizzy drinks from around the world, like Mozambique, Tanzania, South Africa, Brazil, Japan, and Costa Rica. At first, the liquid slid easily from our tastebuds down our throat, but after several samples, we were more selective, enjoying some and gagging at others. When our tongues and our tummies couldn’t handle anymore, we made our way to the exit and the gift shop where you can buy just about anything emblazoned with the Coke logo. 

Though not inexpensive, it’s a fun way to spend a few hours. But whatever you do, don’t go on an empty stomach. For more photos and another person’s experience, check out this blog.

Trip taken February 2015.

The Birthplace of GWTW

“Fiddlydeedee,” Mom would often say with a smile when she disagreed with something or someone – when she really meant, “That’s ridiculous.” She wasn’t from the South and she wasn’t a brunette, but Mom loved Scarlett O’Hara, and she loved “Gone With the Wind.”

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At 11 years old, Mom saw the movie “Gone With the Wind” for the first time. She was entranced and decided then and there that she would name her future daughter “Tara.” Another 20 or so years later, I was born.

Mom brought me to the theater to see the movie when I was 11 and soon after gave me a Scarlett O’Hara doll. I read the book by Margaret Mitchell some time in high school and when a fluffy flirtatious kitten entered our lives, we named her Scarlett. I showed the movie to my own kids when they each turned 11, but it wasn’t until my last birthday that I first visited Atlanta and visited the home of Margaret Mitchell, the American birthplace of my namesake.

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We toured Margaret Mitchell’s apartment, heard stories about her life and stories behind the making of the movie. At the gift store, I couldn’t resist buying a few things. A magnet of Scarlett O’Hara now adorns my file cabinet. I have a coffee table book on the making of the movie and a new copy of the 1,037 page book. When will I read them? Soon. “After all, tomorrow is another day.”

Trip taken February 2015.

Places to Go With Kids in SF

How do you keep four kids, ranging in age from 4 to 12, entertained for a day in San Francisco? Equipped with the cards “City Walks with Kids: San Francisco: 50 Adventures on Foot,” we explored Chinatown, discovering new places and unfamiliar parts of the city one cool winter day.

China Town

We visited a tiny fortune cookie factory, where we sampled and bought a bag of cookies.

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We walked by a building where a dragon in the window reminded us that Chinese New Year was just around the corner.

China Town

We listened to a Chinese band as the kids played on a jungle gym in Portsmouth Square. We shopped at a small market, bought trinkets, listened to street musicians, and ended our adventure with lunch at the Far East Cafe, a family favorite from my childhood years.

Far East Cafe

Trip taken: December 2010.

Snow Shoeing Along Meeks Creek

The sun was out, and the snow was deep. It was a perfect day for snow shoeing. We parked along side Highway 89 (south of Tahoe City), strapped on shoes rented from Tahoe Dave’s, and stepped off the road onto the snowy bank near the Meeks Bay Resort.

We followed the gated dirt road now packed with snow about 1.4 miles, admiring and hugging the trees along the way, stopping as the road ended and the trail began to climb.

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We ate our snacks on logs then headed slowly back to the car, this time across frozen Meeks Creek, choosing to make our own trail through the snowy meadow.

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Trip taken December 2015.