Thank you, thank you, to my many blogging friends who bring Europe to me!
I’m proudly American, but I lived in Germany and went to school there, and had the chance to get around Europe. So my loyalties are divided. The USA has abundant natural resources, stunning landscapes and an almost crazy amount of optimism, but Europe has castles! And Europeans enjoy better chocolate, better cheese, more affordable wine, better vacation time (and in my opinion, better places to vacation). And they sanely use the metric system and support public transportation (Why, oh, why, don’t we?)
I love Europe!
But Europe is so far away from here! And expensive to get to. Therefore I’ve taken to traveling in cyberspace, where it’s practically free.
And you can travel with me!
Whenever I get a yearning to hang out in scenic southern England, Jenny Pellet is my guide. At her blog, Characters from the Kitchen, we discuss life in terms of whatever is on Jenny’s interesting, writerly mind. Recently we’ve covered: how memory works; the meaning of coffee; Robert Kennedy’s assassination; nepotism; and whether traditions/customs transplant well to other countries. In other words, it’s like having lunch with a lively group of friends–in England!
Speaking of lunch, Laila, in Finland, cooks up beautiful, creative dishes . She’s a product developer for coffee shops and bakeries, joining American tastes and textures with a deliciously Nordic, organic and eco-friendly twist. Her blog, Table of Colors transports me. Spinach crepes with thinly sliced moose roast, roasted carrots and onions, and seasoned marscapone dollops, anyone? Pure poetry!
Speaking of poetry… my fellow American Joseph Lira frequently takes me to Eastern Europe, recently through his gorgeous bi-lingual reading of the poem, But For the Grace, by the Nobel prize-winning Polish poet Wyzlawa Szymborska (you have to listen to it!) Joe, of Austin,Texas, is a linguist, teacher, writer, and traveler. And a gardener, herbalist, cook, photographer, and poet. Wait, that sounds like I’m talking about ME! No wonder I like his blog! The differences between us: he’s a Professor of Russian at Austin Community College in Texas and I’m not any kind of professor; and he has worked and studied and traveled widely in the (then) Soviet Union, Russia, Poland, and Belarus, while I’ve only been there vicariously, through my blogging friends.
Speaking of places I’ve only been to vicariously, lets blog-travel now to Berlin, to drop by the studio of my über-cool artist-friend, Susanne Haun. Susanne’s drawings capture the fragility and mortality of life. She’s also the author of a a really groovy art instruction book–Drawing and Coloring in Ink. I hope we’ll see her work in stateside galleries, soon, but until then, I can travel to Berlin to see her work, whenever I want, via my magic cyber-surfing-carpet.
And speaking of magic cyber-surfing-carpets–we’re heading back to the UK region, specifically Dublin, Ireland, to drop in on the pretty-as-a-picture “Just add attitude,” a blog that offers us a stylish take on life, love, style, food with jaunts to London, Paris and recently, a health center in Austria. Her photos and her way with words make Attitude my favorite Irish travel guide.
Where in cyber-space do you go when you want to get away? And who takes you there? Please share your journey and your travel-guides with me (links to your own blog or to one of your favorite bloggers are welcome in the comments).