Traveling Safely

Whether or not we’re comfortable traveling, we should be aware that when we’re away from home there are “advisable” precautions which aren’t necessary in our houses or apartments. I’m agoraphobic, and I try to fly somewhere about once a year.  The schedule varies, but there’s always a sense of accomplishment even after an uninteresting visit. Earlier this month, I visited Southern California for the, uh, eighth time.  It’s a short flight from San Francisco Airport (SFO), and I know my way around a large portion of Los Angeles County.  The public transportation in that neck of the woods has improved … Continue reading Traveling Safely

Apologies (or Just Excuses?) for Yesterday’s Boring Post

Travel writing can get awkward.  That was what happened yesterday.  Sorry ’bout that. In my defense, I was recovering from stress.  The trip home from West Hollywood didn’t go smoothly, and I was exhausted.  In retrospect, some of the incidents were amusing, some understandable and some horrifying. There’s a relatively easy, if time-consuming, way of getting from West Hollywood to the airport in Long Beach.  The process went smoothly, at first. FedExing my larger bag went well.  Everything fit into a small box, and the bag was folded and placed with the other items.  It weighed just under seven pounds … Continue reading Apologies (or Just Excuses?) for Yesterday’s Boring Post

Angels Flight, L.A.

(Note: This blog post has some actual material about Angels Flight, the historic rail service operating in Los Angeles.  You just have to scroll down a bit to find it.) I spent part of last week in Southern California.  There were practical and personal reasons to be there, but also opportunities to do a few fun things. I stayed in a nice hotel on Sunset in West Hollywood.  Not that Sunset in West Hollywood is nice.  However, some aspects of it are better than the high-tech advertising, careless motorists and general bad taste we associate with the street.  In other … Continue reading Angels Flight, L.A.

Travel Stress

Most of the time, I’ve been fortunate in airports and on airplanes.  Aside from a few individuals at security checkpoints who singled me out for bullying (pre-TSA.  The people in question were not the product of any screening or training) and a reservation bump which was corrected within a couple of hours, I’ve done okay.  I haven’t been subjected to the nightmare abuse or inconveniences we’ve heard about, maybe just because I haven’t traveled often. Okay, on the way home from JFK in May of this year, the plane sat on the tarmac for two and a half hours before … Continue reading Travel Stress

When in Rome…

If you’re planning a trip outside of your own country this summer, you should be informed on how electricity is delivered in the country you’re visiting. Power outlets in the U.S. operate on Alternating Current (A.C.), but that isn’t universal.  In many other countries Americans will need an adapter, and if you look online you’ll find some disagreement on whether a particular adapter works in more than one European country.  Make every effort to have all of your questions answered before your departure.  If the hotel supplies a hair dryer, that shouldn’t be an issue.  However, you’ll need to know … Continue reading When in Rome…

Ride the NYC Subway Like a Pro

My recent stay in New York City was the first in four and a half years. I’m a city person, though, and most of it came naturally. Still, there’s conscious risk-taking which we know is unnecessary and we do it anyway. Example: using the elevator in a subway station. We do it when we’re tired, or feeling inclined to harm ourselves.  I think I was just tired. I did it only once, and it worked out fine.  However, I won’t recommend the experience to anyone.  For clarification, here’s a YouTube video by username Nordell: Continue reading Ride the NYC Subway Like a Pro

Troubleshooting With Hotel Reservations

During my recent visit to New York City, I stayed in a Midtown hotel. The room was overdue for renovations, but it was in a nice hotel.  I was very comfortable. The only glitch was with the reservation, which I learned was incomplete when arriving with heavy bags I’d carried after the E train stalled at W. 50th Street and 8th Avenue. Initially, I wasn’t allowed to check in.  The problem was resolved within a few hours, but after sitting up all night on an airplane I was too exhausted to keep the situation in perspective.  The check-in representative and … Continue reading Troubleshooting With Hotel Reservations

Travel Dream/Nightmare?

Flashback to a few years ago: After sitting up on a red eye flight, I checked into a hotel room which had complimentary earplugs.  There was a good reason for the room to have that particular perk, too. Never fear.  I maintained my dignity.  In spite of all of the noise coming from outside, I held the quietest pity party ever.  Didn’t touch anything in the minibar, either. Disclaimer: I had nothing to do with the production of the video.  It’s shared in this post because most of us can identify. Continue reading Travel Dream/Nightmare?