Getting Money Out of an Indonesian ATM

It’s one of the most common anxieties. Where am I going to get my money? Not being able to get money is every traveler’s worst nightmare. In Yogyakarta, Indonesia we ran into an unusual problem that was a first for me. But first, where do travelers generally get their money? 1) Do I get all the local…

An Afternoon in Post-Apocalyptic Wilmington, Delaware

Wilmington, Delaware is a piece of East Coast suburbia that feels like a new utopia created for a post-apocalyptic future. I can describe it no better than by saying the trash cans on the street are never more than 30% full. Compare that to New York, the great American dirt-hole, where trashcans are 120% full…

5 Great Ways to Pass the Time on a Long Flight

Here are 5 great ways to pass the time on a long flight that you won’t find on other websites. Mainly because these are all actually really bad ideas and neither I nor your airline nor your mother recommend you actually do. 1. Make your own movie. You’ve either seen the few good movies on…

New York City v Singapore Subway Systems

Let’s do something fun. Let’s compare the New York City and Singapore metro/subway systems and declare a winner. (It will be fun, I swear.)   1. Number of people killed Somebody told me in Singapore that after a number of fatalities from people stepping onto the tracks, within 2 years Singapore had installed glass barriers at all…

One Fateful Night in a Private Villa in Bali

Tonight we’re spending a romantic night in a private villa nestled in some rice terraces in Bali, so let me tell you about that. It’s a really beautiful place with — Scrtch scrtch scrtch What the hell was that? Scrtch scrtch scrtch There it is again. It’s coming from just outside the bedroom door, in the kitchen. We’re city…

Storm King Art Center

Storm King Art Center is perfect for a day trip out of New York on a mild Summer’s day. Presumably it’s also good on a warm spring or fall day or a heatwave in the middle of winter. So, if I were to rewrite this opening, I might have said Storm King Art Center is…

Alaskan Wilderness Tundra Adventure

It took us a few days to see “real” wildlife in Alaska. A few birds and the insects that live in old men’s beards doesn’t really cut it. But we almost missed the chance to see grizzly bears, moose, caribou, and wolves in their natural habitat in Denali National Park, Alaska. The Wilderness Tundra Adventure…

Alaska Princess Cruise Rail Tour

Most people who visit Alaska do so on a giant cruise ship that floats around the southern shores of Alaska. When we were looking at Alaska, we too were drawn by the charm of sharing oxygen with hundreds of strangers in stuffy cruise ship cabins for a week, but ultimately we decided against it. However,…

An Alarming Announcement on a Bus Tour to Niagara Falls & Toronto

To understand what happened on that bus at 8pm outside a cheap hotel in Toronto you first have to understand Wilson. Wilson was the guide on our bilingual English-Chinese 3-day-tour of Niagara Falls and Toronto from New York City. Wilson wore dark pants and a wool sweater under a camo jacket. He was, I’d guess,…

How Did Astoria Get Its Name?

Astoria, Queens was named after John Jacob Astor, who was once the wealthiest man in America. You might imagine therefore that Mr. Astor was born in what was then known as Hallett’s Cove and the village renamed themselves in his honor. That would be understandable and frankly quite boring. In reality, Mr. Astor never set foot in the…

Citadelle Laferrière

  The ponies were called White Fang and Weedle and they followed us up the mountain to Citadelle Laferrière in northern Haiti, the largest fortress in the Americas. White Fang and Weedle and their owners walked beside us as we hiked. We were sweating and panting and wishing we’d brought more water, and having the…

Trip to Alaska & the Arctic Circle!

Soon I’ll be in the Arctic Circle in the far north of Alaska. I’m so excited! After much procrastination and indecisiveness, we’ve booked roundtrip flights to Alaska, a train tour from Anchorage to Fairbanks, and an additional 17-hour day trip from Fairbanks north to the Arctic Circle. That final day trip is described thusly: Travel in The…