For those of you who follow the TourAbsurd Facebook page, the last couple of days have been filled with hint dropping about an exciting travel destination that just made its way onto my itinerary. Three of you guessed correctly! And the big news is? …INDIA!
Taj Mahal photo courtesy of Shannon O'Donnell.
Continue reading “Update: …and the big news is?” →
Hey, all! Just an update on what's been happening lately. I have 2 giant, mega posts brewing, 1 normal sized one waiting, and several that have been happily percolating in the background for some time now.
I want to tell you more about Catalonia, give you a suggested route for a photo tour of Rome, get into the juicy details of the Doge's Palace in Venice, bite into some incredibly delicious Italian eats on a food tour, and (later today!) get a view from the top tier of the Colosseum! I'd like to introduce you to my friend, Mariana, who is visiting Rome with her husband right now, too. Oh, and I created a cover photo for the TourAbsurd.com Official Fan Page on Facebook to go with the new timeline layout (not a fan of the layout, but what can you do?).
The problem is not material, it's time.
24 hours + 1 year of constellations = still not enough time!
Continue reading “New website, guests, tours, and crazy-busy-ness.” →
Dario and I are spending the winter holidays with his family in Rome. Things are a bit crazy as he is helping with repairs to the house and we are rearranging some of the furniture, including some things we left here when we moved to Ireland. Still, there is plenty of room for silliness.
One lupa open sleigh.
In particular, I have fun making ill-constructed language jokes, utilizing my poor Italian skills to make bad puns and deliberate pronunciation gaffs. Often Dario and I will be laughing away in front of the fireplace, speaking our own special version of "Itanglish" and coming up with new ways to drive each other crazy. Sometimes the only way we can understand each other is to deliberately mispronounce something in our respective native tongues so the other can mentally assemble the pieces in a language that makes sense.
On the plane from Cork to Rome, for example, Dario was being cheeky about something or other and I told him he was fired. He looked baffled, tilted his head like a lolcat, and said "…I'm what?"
Dario: "…what are you talking about?"
Me: "Fired! Not working here anymore! No longer employed as The Husband!"
Dario: "…fiiii– what?"
Dario: "Oh, 'fired'!"
Yes, Dario. Revenge is sweet.
We don't yet know how our plans for the new year will shape up. We are definitely going to Spain for a week in February, courtesy of Charming Villas, to visit their lovely properties and experience the culture of Catalonia. Starting in March, we may be spending 3 months in China and San Francisco as part of an accelerator program for entrepreneurs as we continue to work on Dario's bike sharing project. An additional possibility is that we will end up housesitting in various places around the world. So much to do and see, so many places to go, so many people to meet. 2012 is going to be GREAT!
We wish you a wonderful holiday season!
May your travels take you far and wide,
making great friends and memories along the way.
Auguri e Buon Natale!
Hello from Ireland!
Just a quick update to let you know what's happening next!
I'll soon be heading to Tenerife to visit Linda of Islandmomma. With the Irish winter fast approaching, I suspect I will not want to leave. Or at least that I'll want to go back very soon. Thankfully, living in Cork and having many discount airlines that pass through, it's fairly easy to get to beautiful places for cheap!
Last month I won the Cork Cycling Festival's photo competition. Yesterday I received the prize, a Fujifilm FinePix S2950. I have yet to take it out in daylight, but it does get some pretty excellent closeup detail in low light conditions. The reviews on Amazon are mixed but mostly positive. I'll let you know how it does on a sunnier island.
Taken on the Beara Peninsula on the same day we captured the calf.
If you follow TourAbsurd on Facebook, you may already know that Dario and I submitted an entry to Tripping.com's photo contest. The prize is 2 tickets to… anywhere! We'd really like to win so that we can keep bringing you the silly here on TourAbsurd. Dario would also like to connect with more folks to work on his bikesharing dream project, Secondwheel. …but we need your help.
All you have to do is go to the voting page and click on the green "Vote now" button. That's it! No entering of email addresses, no registration — just a wee click — promise!
Click here to vote for our entry
I just discovered yesterday that you can vote once per day. It's not cheating if you "Vote early and vote often" though a friend did say, "…i still think using such a handsome model is cheating ;)" (I agree!)
Finally, Inshe’Allah, I will be heading to the World Travel Market in London this November, where I look forward to meeting many of the travel bloggers I follow in person. I was able to find a ticket for 26 euro (round trip!). With the help of a great Couchsurfing or Tripping.com host, I should be able to do this for very little money.
(Oh, I guess that wasn't quite all — we also hope to go home to Italy to see the family for the winter holidays. Fingers crossed!)
So that's me…
What's up with you?
(Note: the recipe is at the end ↓ Only 5 short paragraphs between here and there, I promise!)
I first tried limoncello while out with friends and fellow Couchsurfers at Trattoria da Nennella in Naples. There were 14 of us there and we had lots of food and red wine. I'm a lightweight and came into liking wine relatively late in life, so I was feeling the effects of the vino. (Naturally, I immediately transitioned into being a winesnob.) After all the pasta and meat dishes, it was time for dessert — fruit!
There we were, munching happily away on bananas and clementine, when a few bottles of yellow stuff showed up, along with tiny glasses. I saw everyone taking very, very small servings of the beverage. I joined in and took a cautious sip. WOW! It was strong stuff! Still, it was delicious, so I continued nursing my wee glass just as the proprietors loudly came to kick us out (it's tradition there; the staff is outrageously rude — it's part of the charm). Oops, no time for sipping! Had to down it in one gulp! Thought it was going to melt the enamel off my teeth! Hooooooo, stay away from open flames, I thought to myself.
Continue reading “Serenella’s Limoncello Recipe” →
Been a crazy week and looks to get a bit crazier in the next little while. To keep thoughts on the happy side of life, let's talk about one of my favorite subjects: food! Along with meeting people, learning different ways of life, and seeing amazing historical sites, food is at the top of my Reasons To Travel list.
Mmm, kimchi! (Photo courtesy of wikimedia.)
Some of the recent talk about kimchi and cabbage shortages in S. Korea got me thinking about pickled, fermented, and otherwise preserved favorite foods. I have only had kimchi a handful of times, but I loved it! Even loved the kind made from radishes, which was handed to me by a reserved (skeptical? concerned?) server at a Korean restaurant in Seattle.
Growing up, the only kind of pickled anything I knew about were cucumbers, a.k.a., "pickles." As I got older I was AMAZED to learn that other vegetables — even fish! — were preserved this way. I don't love all of the pickled delicacies I've sampled, but I'm nearly always up to try it.
So… what's your favorite? :D
If you are reading this post, it means the DNS — aka, the magical traffic wizard of the interwebs — has updated. What you are seeing is the new and improved (well, mostly!) website for TourAbsurd. There are still tweaks to be made and old entries to be corrected, but I was too excited about the new design to keep it under wraps!
See? I told you it would be shiny and sparkly!
The old site still has all the content that was posted up until this point. It's been imported here with a reasonable amount of success. Think I will need to take off this pith helmet and put on my Master Editor's cap for a while to fix it all up. Or maybe I can swipe that wizard's cap when he turns away to deal with those buckets…
Anyway, welcome to the new digs! Make yourself comfy. There's toast and tea in the kitchen. Cheers!