New York, NY Part 2: I<3NY

My partner Rick and I recently took trip to New York with a large part of the Steves Family: his son Andy, daughter Jackie, sister Linda, youngest niece Caleigh, and eldest niece (and amazing artist) Nicolina.  Part family vacation, part art tour of Nicolina’s works, we got to know the city better than we ever…

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Being a Tourist in Your Own Town

I love Seattle, and after nearly four years of living here, it finally feels like home.  It’s a dynamite town.  It’s small yet metropolitan.  Neighborhoods like Ballard, Capitol Hill, Freemont, and Magnolia boast distinct personalities yet feel cohesively Seattle.  We have a good baseball team, a stellar soccer team, and a phenomenal football team (Go…

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A Date Which Will Live In Infamy

“Yesterday, December 7, 1941–a date which will live in infamy–the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.” Seventy-two years ago, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, in response to the “dastardly” surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, and speaking on behalf of himself and the people…

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Letting Fate Be Your Guide in Venice

Letting Fate Be Your Guide in Venice It’s early morning.  6:30 to be exact.  I’ve yet to take my shower, but centuries-old buildings are bathing in amber-and rose-tinted sunlight and summon me for a visit.  There’s so much to do today, and I need to maximize my time here.  Ninety minutes of Venice practically all…

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Cultural Eye-candy in St. Petersburg

“Dobryy den’,” I said to the Dorothy Hamill-coiffed customs agent.  I was eager to practice the little Russian I knew.  She must not have heard me because she didn’t respond to my greeting.  “Dobryy den’,” I repeated, this time with a smile.  Maybe I was pronouncing it wrong.  The third time I wished her good…

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Walk Like a Roman

When I think of Rome, I recall ancient sites, coin-filled Baroque fountains, sexy (and not-so-sexy) men casting Ciao, Bellas at every passing female, and platefuls of pasta that, without fail, end up blissfully in my belly.  Equally engrained in my brain are nostalgic, cinematic images of Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn zipping on a Vespa…

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Time-traveling in Egypt

By and large, I’m a visual learner–I need to see it to understand it.  I’m not the kind of gal who’s skilled at just “imagining” something.  While books, photos, and movies are helpful, traveling and seeing things with my own eyes is, for me, the best way to comprehend a culture’s history and contemporary realities.…

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