Panorama of the Week: Blue Sky Quito, Ecuador

quito church

Quito, Ecuador -- at 2,800 meters (9,200 feet) in elevation, it's just a bit closer to the sky than most capital cities. Walk around Quito's old town and you'll feel it -- not only because of the slight shortness of breath you might experience, but also because of the inimitable cloud-popping blue sky overhead. It's so surreal that you sometimes feel you can reach … [Read more...]

Protect Thy Passport

Passport Covers

Oh, the places your passport can take you. That is, if you keep it safe and protected. Here are a few tips on protecting your passport, avoiding passport scams and what steps you should take before you leave home in case your passport is stolen. … [Read more...]

Beer Me, Berlin!

2011 Berlin Beer Festival

You know it's been a long day at the beer festival when guys in lederhosen start doing the moonwalk. -- The essence of the moment, Saturday night at the Berlin beerfest.More than 2,000 beers from over 300 breweries hailing from 86 countries -- all spread out over two kilometers in the middle of the city. No, this is not Oktoberfest.So many beers yet so … [Read more...]

40 at 40: Life Nuggets

Holy Shit, I'm 40

I turned 40 yesterday. Yep, I’m almost hesitant to admit it. Almost. There are days where I’d like to think I’m suspended permanently at either 23 or 33. But that's not the way time, this construct we’ve created to capture the constant state of change in the world around us, actually works."What have you learned over these years?" a friend asked in light of the … [Read more...]

My Big Fat American Passport

American Passport

Oh, if our passports could talk! A quick look at the numbers and some stories and lessons behind my newly-fattened American passport."This is it. After this, no more." -- An American embassy employee in Berlin hands back my passport with a third – and undoubtedly final – set of extra pages.What do you think of when flip through your passport? Countries … [Read more...]