Discovering European Capitals of Culture

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Since 1985, the European Commission has been designating one or two cities per year as European Capitals of Culture (ECOC). That’s thirty years of work, recognizing more than fifty cities, … Read more

2013 in 50 Photographs

Kris and I visited 13 foreign countries this year. In order: Spain, Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, Canada, England, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Japan, back to Spain, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, and Hungary. … Read more

Advice for Driving in the UK and Ireland

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I can talk about this now, and I’ll start by saying Tom is a very good driver. And I am a very good navigator. I can read a map, have a good sense of direction, and am good at planning routes, scenic or otherwise. But things are different here in the UK and in the Republic of Ireland, and I’m not just talking about driving on the left. For both driver and passenger, I offer these true stories and tidbits of advice.

Site Blocked, and Other Little Surprises in the UK and Ireland

The message read, “This site has been blocked as potentially politically controversial. If you think this message has appeared in error, please see your network administrator,” or something like that. Had I accidentally Googled my way into a terrorist site? No, as a matter of fact, I was trying to look up UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Ireland. I was in my room at Bewley’s Hotel in the Ballsbridge neighborhood of Dublin, a fairly nice place, the nicest place I’d been in for quite a while.