What is American Food? A World View

Photographing American Food in Berlin

"We would like to eat American food. You know, you are American, so it would be great if we could try American food with you." -- A dinner request from our Iranian CouchSurfing guests a few weeks ago in Berlin.Dan and I looked at each other, deer in headlights. American food? What's that? … [Read more...]

Panorama of the Week: Mayan Ruins of Tikal, Guatemala

tikal ruins

Stand in the middle of the Grand Plaza between Temple I and Temple II at Tikal, Guatemala and imagine what life must have been like in this Mayan city over 1,200 years ago when Tikal was at its peak. The size of the temples and surrounding acropolis indicate that this must have been a rich and sophisticated city-state. Yet the ruins are only partially exposed and … [Read more...]

Bangladesh Village Homestay: Becoming One of the Family

bangladesh homestay

This is the story of a homestay experience in rural Bangladesh -- and a young woman who hopes to be Prime Minister one day.There I was in a traditional courtyard kitchen in a village in Bangladesh. Dirt floor, earthen oven. Mrs. Ali, our host mother, stoked the fire and minded several hot pans. It was time to slice the onions and my turn was up. … [Read more...]

Panorama of the Week: Jerash Roman Theater, Jordan

jerash theatre

Just a few hours outside of Jordan's capital city of Amman lies Jerash, a city playing host to a rather impressive collection of Roman ruins. No "ruin fatigue" here: the history of Jerash - layer upon layer of civilizations, from Greek to Roman to Umayyad, keeps you wondering about the cycles of cultures and religions -- and all the people who walked the same streets … [Read more...]

The Travel Apps of Our Dreams

MacGyver Toolkit

It seems like smartphones can do just about anything these days, from waking us up in the morning according to our sleep cycles to translating foreign language signs we’ve just photographed. But our iPhones and Androids still can’t do everything.As we put together travel plans for this coming fall, it occurs to us that some travel apps are still missing. Here are … [Read more...]

Panorama of the Week: Great Synagogue in Budapest, Hungary

budapest synagogue

The Great Synagogue (aka, Dohány Street Synagogue) in Budapest is the largest synagogue in Europe (and 2nd largest in the world). We stumbled upon it while strolling around Budapest on an autumn day and were taken back by its architectural design and unusual colorful exterior.Originally built in the mid-19th century, the synagogue was destroyed by Nazi and Allied … [Read more...]