Do you ever dream of a vacation, the perfect vacation that you just want to have so, so badly? Lately I’ve been dreaming of Arizona and the Wild West; of being in the wilderness amidst beautiful scenery and a free running river. Read More
Morocco has been a destination on my wish list ever since I started to stalk the magnificent riads on the Essaouira coast. Essaouira has always intrigued me – it’s a late-18th-century fortified town, constructed according to the principles of contemporary European military architecture. It’s a charming town that I would one day love to visit.
We’re itching to go to the beach, but there’s always that dilemma the comes with that thought… buying the perfect swimsuit!
We all need to get away sometime, step away and truly appreciate you and your surroundings. Maya Tulum Resort is located on the beautiful Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico; it is a seaside wellness retreat where you feel a true connection with the Mayan past.
Since my last blogger diary, it’s rained, it’s snowed, I’ve taken sunny afternoon walks, visited museums – far too much to get straight into one (comprehensible) blog post. So instead, I thought I’d play a bit of “fill in the blank.” Read More
It’s tough to come up with an all-encompassing answer when people ask me how my trip to Hong Kong was. I jump to, “it was great,” because it definitely was – but it was also more…
The city has a lot to take in. Just walking around, your senses are overloaded with incoming sights and smells like you’ve never experienced before.
Visually, it’s a city full of contradictions. The city is half built on an island and winding up a mountain full of lush greenery and wild animals. As you wander through its labyrinth-like pathways, your eyes take in the many skyscrapers (each a mind-bending architectural fete) juxtaposed against an abundant natural foreground.
The people and setting are a mixture of old-world and new. Modern-day businessmen walk amongst temples and traditional street vendors while at every turn you are discovering something of British influence alongside the Chinese heritage.
And the smells! Markets with strange foods waft new scents your way. Dried seafood, bubble tea, and strange grills line the street.
I loved learning more about some of the traditional Chinese practices. One of which – ancient Chinese medicine – is very interesting. From what westerners who have sampled the remedies tell me, it really works!
I hunted down this neat place where they prepare you remedies using obscure ingredients. Once you are given the makings, you take them home and brew everything into a bitter tea-like concoction that you drink down for healing. It was amazing how busy they were doling out remedies for a crowd of clients.
In addition, I picked up some Tiger Balm which is found everywhere. I’ve fallen in love with the stuff. It works on anything from sore muscles to head-clearing for a stuffed up cold.
Lastly, there was a lot of food sampling on my trip – some good, some bad, and some just okay.
Traditional Dim Sum was as I expected. I’m not a huge dumpling fan, but it was consumable. Sadly, the congee didn’t really fly with my palette. I wasn’t a fan of the texture and overall flavor. What I really fell in love with though, was hot pot and the century egg.
Not only is hot pot a fun sociable activity, but it also tastes great. I made my sesame dipping sauce extra spicy which left me in heaven, but, if you’re not into spicy, you can prepare it however you want and it still tastes great. For those that don’t know what Century eggs are, they are eggs that are buried underground for a supposed 100 years before they are dug up to be eaten. You have to have an open mind to consume these black eggs, but I swear – they taste amazing. Also, if it’s on the menu, order a milk iced tea to go along with your meal. It has a particular, creamy, tea flavor that is well worth the try.
On top of these suggestions, I also enjoyed the variety of noodle soups, munching on dried mango, and hydrating with a selection of great iced teas that comes in fun juice boxes. There are so many things to try! If you ever go, I suggest tasting anything you can stomach. It’s an entertaining eye-opening experience – and for those who like to cook, it’s always fun to expand your horizons.
Summer is the perfect time to plan those weekend getaways, and our country is full of great escapes to explore. Last week I headed up north to camp in the Adirondack Mountains – a perfect getaway destination. The mountains, rivers, and lakes are immediately relaxing. We set up camp in Wilmington, NY right near Whiteface Mountain and Lake Placid. It was the perfect spot to explore the village of Lake Placid and to get in good hiking and fishing. The town is full of cute shops, Olympics memorabilia, nice people, and even a pile of snow they keep year round. We shopped local specialties to picnic and grill (look out for this weekend’s recipe!) You can even bring your dog into most places, so bring the trusty friend along if you go. I had Abigail, and she had a blast getting down and dirty in the mountains. One day we hiked Whiteface, the tallest mountain in the region. She made it the whole way =). I highly recommend the challenge if you’re up to it. The view and sense of accomplishment are surreal and invigorating.
My beer, the Ubu Ale, was named after a local legendary dog =)
Abigail, always thinking she’s the star of the show…
Almost to the top!
“climbing mountains is hard work, give me food!”
It’s not often you get to enjoy nighttime in the middle of the woods – talk about a getaway…