October 2013

A People and their Dance (part 3 of 3)

Tango dancers
Chuck Sat, 2013-10-26 12:00
We've been taking dance lessons at our local Arthur Murray Studio since the beginning of this year: our first set of lessons was Chuck's Christmas present to Lori last year. We've wanted to take lessons since we were married: back when cable television had only about a dozen channels (yes, we've been married that long) it was easy to happen across the PBS broadcast of the national ballroom dance championships. It's great to see Dancing With the Stars revive interest in ballroom dancing, but it's been on our wishlist for much longer than the show's been around. So far we've gotten to "Bronze I...

A People and their Wine (part 2 of 3)

Spanish wines
Chuck Sat, 2013-10-19 13:00
If you've been reading our blogs, you'll know that we've developed quite a passion for wine, heavily reinforced by our summer trip to California wine country this year. Well, we're going back soon, so look out for more wine blogs! There seems to be no better example of the relationships between a land, it's crops (in this case grapes), and the local people than with wine. There are hundreds of different types (varietals) of grapes, all growing better in different climates and in different soils than others, and the people and their grapes have evolved on that land together, sometimes over...

A People and their Cuisine (part 1 of 3)

Italian dish
Chuck Sat, 2013-10-12 12:30
For the next few blogs, at the risk of reinforcing a few stereotypes, we're going to explore some cultural parallels in cuisine, wine, and dance. Whether the latter are a result of the former, or if the former is influenced by the latter, we'll leave that to the sociologists (or whoever researches that sort of thing). We just think it's cool to think of how those things a culture has most proudly developed are often a reflection of that culture, and in fact I think it's the search of those interesting connections that keeps people who are addicted to travel (like us) going out for more. When...

Slovenia? Yes, really...

Ljubliana, Slovenia
Chuck Sat, 2013-10-05 13:23
Just about all Americans would be hard-pressed to pinpoint Slovenia on a map. But we (well, Chuck does) spend hours staring at and studying maps (Google Earth is our most-used iPad app) and can easily show you where it is. If you're interested, it's just east of Italy on the Adriatic sea, and just south of Austria. From just that tidbit of geography, you'd expect Slovenia to be a well-known tourist destination, but the reaction we universally get when we bring up Slovenia is, "Really?" Granted, this might only be the reaction from the typical American, but Frommer's calls Slovenia "Europe's...