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Lake Michigan and Labor Day Weekend

Chicago emptied out some over Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Large rollerbags and their owners fill aisles of the Blue and Orange Lines. Some restaurants and independently-owned stores close for the long weekend or take a proper, well-deserved week away. The highways are even more congested than usual — to Rockford, to Wisconsin, to Indiana, to Iowa, to any place not-Chicago.

Those of us who remain, however, enjoy the last sweet breath of summertime — Labor Day Weekend. Continue reading

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Don’t be Scared to Eat Street Food

Good news! Street food trucks and carts are as safe or safer than their brick-and-mortar restaurant counterparts, reports a recent study done from 260,000 food-safety inspections in seven US cities by the Institute for Justice, “Street Eats, Safe Eats.”

Excellent news for Boston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Louisville, Miami, Seattle and Washington, D.C.!

But what about the rest of us? And what about eating street food when traveling abroad? Is that street food safe? Is it RISKY BUSINESS?  Continue reading

Sun Bay and not another soul in sight, Vieques, Puerto Rico

Three Reasons to Stop at the Airport Tourist Information Desk. Travel Hack Thursday.

Many international airports have tourist and visitor information desk on its premises. I honestly never thought about stopping there until my recent trip to Puerto Rico showed me how helpful they can be. All for free.  Continue reading

Palawan, Philippines. Wish You Were Here Wednesday.

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On the way to the ferry, we stopped at a snorkel shop where we rented water shoes, fins, goggles, breathing tube thingy. Everything bright orange. At the shop, I still wasn’t sure if I actually would snorkel, but I figured, if I decided to do it, I’d need the equipment. And a bag of fresh pandesal, soft, semi-sweet bread rolls, to feed the fishies, too.

This is Pandan Island, Honda Bay, Palawan, Philippines. This is where I first tried to snorkel. That’s a big deal for me because I can’t swim. It’s sad to be a Filipino who can’t swim. But, snorkeling is different, right?  Continue reading