La Vie Bordelaise

The sun is shining, and the wide boulevards are full of people. They walk slowly, smiling, never seeming to be in a hurry. I stroll past beautiful stone buildings, pausing to admire them, stopping here and there to watch the joggers, the skateboarders, the picnickers. The river moves past as slowly as the Bordelais themselves.…

Even in Winter, Oslo Sizzles

It is my second full day in Oslo, and I find myself on a boat tour of the Oslofjord, the narrow inlet along which the Norwegian capital is laid out. It is cold, especially for a kid from California. We are given thin blankets as we board, which help, but even those, my thick winter…

A Roman Villa in Los Angeles

Outside of the Mediterranean, there are a few areas in the world with a Mediterranean climate: the cape of South Africa, Chile, and the California coast. Perhaps that's why, when oil tycoon J Paul Getty wanted to build a replica Roman villa on the cliffs of Malibu to house his art collection, nobody called him…

A Chinese History of Vancouver

Carefully manicured trees, intricate lattice work, fascinatingly shaped rocks reminiscent of mythical creatures, and the sound of a waterfall greet me at every turn in the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Garden in Vancouver's large and bustling Chinatown. Armed with a free cup of jasmine tea from a dispenser near the entrance, I slowly walk through the…

The Ultimate Guide to Spokane!

Spokane is Washington's second largest city, and the only noticeable metropolitan area for hundreds of miles around. However, its location on the far eastern edge of the state makes it the ideal home base to explore not only Eastern Washington, but the Idaho Panhandle and Western Montana as well. Many people, though, make the mistake…