Tag Archives: travel

A trip to Byzantium/New Rome/Constantinople/Istanbul

As alluded to, we spent the last week of 2008 trompsing around Istanbul.  Why Turkey?  We had one more SWU to use on American and wanted to go as far as possible on it to soak up all the business class goodness but Asia was way expensive and Western Europe not far enough.  Istanbul was a good compromise, straddling two continents and with a favorable exchange rate (though see my previous post).  I’ll recap in detail but here are some general notes:

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A return to long-form blogging

After nearly a year’s absence, I thought I’d blow the dust off this puppy.  I’ve been all about the “microblogging” recently, keeping up with Facebook updates and Twitter (follow me @thenotoriousmeg), but haven’t had the attention span to write anything substantive.   But given the state of the economy, who knows how much longer I’ll be able to travel, so I might as well document it.

2008 was a banner year for my passport, ringing in the New Year in Nicaragua, closely followed by an all too brief trip to Paris (my first), two work trips to Italy in spring and summer, an epic trip to Portugal for which the Husband stayed on an extra two weeks alone, Labor Day week in Barbados for a gonga deal (no real photos from this trip), and ending the year in Istanbul (photos and commentary to come).  Wow.  I feel fortunate as hell.  I wish I could go back and write about each place (and perhaps I will at some point), but a few things I realized in the course of all these travels.

TMI

Not that kind of information, I'm talkin' 'bout media.  I've been a big interweb fan since the late nineties, a forum poster since 2000 on Fodors when I've planned trips and Wedding Channel when I was getting married (all with this same mildly clever but getting dated username), and a blog reader for the past few years.  I've now discovered RSS feeds and it makes my blog reading wicked easy.  Since it's partially my job to keep up on travel news, and since I just don't know when to say when, I now read over a dozen travel blogs a day:

  • I also get weekly or daily newsletters from USA Today, NY Times, Budget Travel, Washington Post, Daily Candy, Manhattan User's Guide, and Thrillist.

It's getting to be a problem, but I just can't stop!  My favorite news of late: the continuing coverage of Well Behaved Monkey on a Ponytail (my friend Sherry's clever title for the inevitable but less exciting sequel to Snake on a Plane) and the related story on comfort animals, Russians trying to conquer world, and the ill-considered title of this trade pub.

Happy Friday!

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Bourdain in Beirut

Last night, I watched my other favorite TV chef's special Bourdain in Beirut on the Travel Channel.  Tony Bourdain was filming an episode of his show No Reservations when the bombings started in Lebanon and they filmed their time there.  It's really fascinating and sad what's happened to the city, he also wrote about it for Salon.com: Watching Beirut die.  You'll have to watch a brief ad to read it for free, but I think it's worth it.  The show is rerunning this week a few times on the Travel Channel.

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