Monthly Archives: December 2012

Weekend Trip and Photo Gallery: Ephesus

Turkey has some claim to just about everything in “recent” human history, from China’s Silk Road trade route to the capital of the Roman Empire.  Napoleon once said, “If the Earth was a single state, Istanbul would be its capital.” Efes (Ephesus), a city with a population – at its peak – of 250,000, is […]

Six-Word Story Dec 27, 2012

Ken’s jogging fascinated the little boys.

Turkish Bath- Scrubbed, Rubbed, and Oiled

The step-by-step guide to the Turkish bath (Hamam) I. INTRODUCTION 1)  First off, there is no giant bathtub or soaking pool, so forget the swimsuit or any thoughts of skinny dipping.  A Turkish bath is for bathing.  The baths have been around for a couple of thousand years.  Ancient Turkish households did not have “bathrooms.”  […]

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, or: How Italy Turned Me Into a History Geek

I admit I was rather take-it-or-leave-it about going to Florence.  I’d passed through the city on my first trip to Europe on a EurRail pass almost 20 years ago: 8 countries in 6 weeks.  It’s a wonder I remember anything at all of those 48 hours, but I did see The David. And the other David.  […]

Tip #746 for buying airline tickets: check the currency BEFORE you pay

A few weeks ago we bought tickets to South Africa (yay!!! finally!!!).  Prices had been shown on the website in South African Rand, which we knew to be about 8:1. When we finished and the final receipt showed up, it read that we’d just paid “4,860 AED.” Huh?!  What’s an AED???  And how many dollars […]