I’ve always wanted to travel more, see new places and experience different cultures. Unfortunately, even though we’re retired now, it’s difficult for Greg to get around, so traveling is out of the question. I am grateful for the trips we’ve been able to make in the past, and hope that maybe someday we can do some more.
The most memorable places I’ve traveled in my life:
Germany (and Salzburg, Austria). My parents came from Germany, and on three occasions in my childhood and teens, my family traveled back to visit my grandmother, aunts and uncles and cousins. We visited castles and cathedrals, and saw the famous mechanical clock in Munich. My favorite place of all was Berchtesgaden, where my parents met and lived after World War II.
Hawaii. I’ve been there twice—once by myself, in 2004 for the Maui Writer’s Conference; and once with my husband, Greg, to Waikiki on Oahu. What a beautiful paradise.
The Grand Canyon. The first time was in 1997, the summer before Carly left for college. I thought it would be awful for someone who lived in Arizona to confess that they’d never been to the Grand Canyon, so we took all five kids there and back again in one day in our old Dodge Caravan with no air conditioning. I knew it was just a hole in the ground, but when you see it in person, it’s awe inspiring, so vast. My kids mostly remember being very very hot and bored with the 500-mile roundtrip. (And 2 weeks later our Caravan died.) About twelve years ago Greg and I went back by ourselves.
New York City. When we lived in New Jersey, we went to the city often, mostly for the museums and musicals. We’ve also done the Circle Line cruise around Manhattan. Our daughter Carly has lived in Brooklyn for 22 years.
Williamsburg, Virginia. That’s where we went on our honeymoon, about 6 months after our January 1974 wedding. It was getting close to our country’s bicentennial, and I was very into the colonial period. We went on what was the hottest week in the summer, looked at the historical sites for an hour or two in the morning, and then back to the hotel pool.
Washington, D.C. I went with my parents and my brother a couple of times when I was in high school. We went to all the monuments, and to the National Gallery (my favorite!) and the Smithsonian. Every American should see our capital city. Greg has never gone, even though I’ve suggested it many times.
Niagara Falls. Another place my parents took us, more than once. If I’m not mistaken, we’ve seen it from the American side and the Canadian side. It’s mesmerizing. You could watch that water fall for hours.
Sedona, Arizona. Beautiful red rock country. In 2008, Greg and I spent a couple of nights in a bed & breakfast with a gorgeous view from the balcony. We visited the Chapel of the Holy Cross, a beautiful church with amazing views, took a ride on the Verde Canyon railroad, and had the most delicious steak dinner that Greg still talks about. I’d love to repeat that trip, but the B&B now costs three times what it did, and that’s without the train ride and steak dinner that were part of the original deal. Bummer.
If Greg ever recovers his strength and energy, there are a few trips I’d like for us to make:
Grand European river tour. You know the one. You’ve seen the commercials. From Amsterdam to Budapest. I am so jealous of all my friends who have already done this. But if I couldn’t do this tour, I’d be happy to settle for . . .
Italy. I want to see Florence, Rome, Venice, the Cinque Terra. I want to see Michelangelo’s work. I want to see lots of Renaissance stuff.
Israel. I want to walk where Jesus walked. I want to see all the places I’ve read about in the Bible. I almost went with my daughter Carly in 2019—I got my passport and everything. But then Greg and I both had health issues and I had to cancel. Every year church groups host Holy Land tours. I hope I get to go someday.
Now it’s your turn. What is the best vacation you’ve ever taken? If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go? Share in the comments below.
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In 1860, Mount Zion AME Church in Trenton, NJ established the Locust Hill Cemetery, the final resting place for at least 178 people, including 10 Civil War veterans. But by 1905, it was forgotten, used as a dumping ground. How one man’s historic vision saved it from obscurity.
Now go to South Africa for a quilt festival. Be sure to watch the video, although it may give you vertigo. She runs through the whole exhibition hall and films hundreds of quilts in a few minutes. My eyes (and her camera) don’t focus that fast, and maddeningly, she doesn’t linger at some of the quilts I most want to get a good look at.