Category: Featured

  • Gardening on Mother’s Day, and other Travels with Mom

    Gardening on Mother’s Day, and other Travels with Mom

    My mother was very well organized, and we all knew what that meant on Mother’s Day. Plant the garden. Never, the rule went, plant before Mother’s Day because, sure as shootin’, if you did, you’d lose all those fragile young plants to an overnight freeze. This was St. Cloud, Minnesota, after all, and both my […]

  • Book Recommendations

    Book Recommendations

    What’s on your bookshelf? What are you thinking of reading next? You’ll never guess where I got a great list of book recommendations recently: Perkin’s Restaurant in Bloomington, MN! Yes, Perkin’s, home of the American-Flag-Flown-as-Advertising-Billboard and Pigs in a Blanket. A couple dozen of us gathered in a back room of Perkin’s, set with tables […]

  • Library Visit Aborted: Not Seeing the Biblioteca Nacional de España

    Library Visit Aborted: Not Seeing the Biblioteca Nacional de España

    On our last full day in Madrid this past December, I headed to the Biblioteca Nacional de España (the National Library of Spain). My plan was to sit down with a book of poetry or a random selection from the shelves, to wander and get a sense of the place, to take a couple photos, […]

  • Welcome Grass Mats and Futons: Ryokan Stays in Japan

    Welcome Grass Mats and Futons: Ryokan Stays in Japan

    Nagano was our second stop out of Tokyo, and our first experience staying in a ryokan guest house. We found Chuokan Shimizuya Ryokan on Booking.com. With grass mats and sparse furnishings, it seemed huge in comparison to our city hotels. We took advantage of the baths, relaxed with tea in our room, used the window […]

  • Take a Walk in Yeats Country

    Take a Walk in Yeats Country

    We returned to Sligo, the town and the county, to recall the poetry of W.B. Yeats, to walk the area, and to take photos. By good luck and some poking around, we ended up having dinner with a local couple, Damien and Paula, who regularly host Yeats Evenings of fine food, great conversation, and the […]