I’ve visited Japan three times over the past forty years, most recently in January, 2017. My wife and I chose to spend most of our time in Kyoto; it’s much smaller than Tokyo yet has more cultural sites, and is the home of my friend, Jay Klaphake, Organizer of TEDxKyoto.
Tom and I have chosen to go to Iceland in the shoulder season, when the temperatures average from a low of 40° F (4° C) to a high of 50° F (10° C). We also want to avoid the summer tourists. Iceland is slightly smaller than the state of Kentucky with a population of less than 333,000, sparsely populated to say the least.
When a dear friend casually mentions that she is planning a trip to Iceland with a mutual friend I immediately pounce. “Iceland? I’m going with you,” I announce, never even considering that she may not want me to join them. I have wanted to go to Iceland ever since catching a glimpse of the northern lights from a plane window while travelling to northern Europe with my father as a child.
After long, hot, humid Florida summers, and even seemingly warm winters, snow and cooler weather can provide the perfect respite. A delightful, easy place to find it during the holiday season is Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Truthfully, Israel was never on my “must go to” list before now. Possibly because it has been at perpetual war. This pinky- sized state is surrounded by massive countries that are constantly at war with their neighbors and who have, since the beginning of time, declared war on Israel at one time or another. The history is complex and deep.
For five hundred years the old and the new have combined to create the urban tapestry that is St. Augustine, Florida. Today, the multitude of artists who call this charming historic city home have helped put St. Augustine on the art map and it is known as one of the “100 Best Small Art Towns in America.” The atmosphere is intoxicating and it’s the kind of place where you can walk around for an afternoon and feel as if you’ve gone to some faraway European locale.