Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Back in the USA

Yes, I know that I have not updated the blog in quite some time. It is not because I have lost interest or because I have been lazy. It is because life has been a bit crazy. Actually, life has been more than a bit crazy…it has been completely hectic. Running around like a chicken with its head cut off crazy! There is so much to report that I have no idea where to begin. I guess to keep it simple (if possible), I will start with the present and work backwards (most likely over several entries).

Right now I am composing this blog not from the comforts of our Geneva flat but from the not so comfortable cramped, stuffy laundrymat at the Marriott Courtyard in Washington, DC. Yes, we are in the US. And we are not just on holiday…we are back for good! After an amazing and unforgettable 3.5 years in Europe, we have said our goodbyes and have our feet planted on home soil (Ok, the feet are far from planted but they are slowly digging). While I want to describe my thoughts and feelings about moving back, I will save that for another time as the chapters are still being written in a novel that is guaranteed to rival the length of War and Peace. Facts and logistics first…

This move has been in the works for many months. However, it has been kept a small secret as major details such as where and when changed daily if not hourly as Jignesh was exploring new career opportunities. Despite moving out of our Geneva flat over a month ago and being homeless since that time, those details were just finalized late last week. I can, with confidence (I think), finally report that we were will be returning to Southern California (Orange County) where Jignesh will re-connect with the same boss and company that he worked for while we lived in San Diego!

Yes, the last few months have been absolutely nuts and but I have to admit that we have also managed to have a bit of fun along the way. Since my last entry, we have travelled to Lyon (France) and Istanbul (Turkey) for short getaways. We also squeezed in a 10 trip to Kenya for a safari and some relaxation on the coast. Finally, we were had a wonderful time with my 93 year-old Grandparents in Boston. Of course, more details and pictures on those adventures are to come!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Edinburgh, Scotland

With Jignesh on a two-week plus business trip earlier this month, I found myself getting a bit stir crazy and decided to take a last-minute trip to Edinburgh. Alone! While I have always admired people who have the confidence to dine alone or got to a movie by themselves, I am just not that type of person. When I do things like that, I feel like a fish in a bowl. So, I really debated about going on this trip as I was not sure I would even have much fun. In the end, the lure of travel and visiting a city that always gets great reactions took over. So, off I went! And I am more than glad I did. I had the freedom to do exactly what I wanted when I wanted. I browsed all the cashmere and wool stores to my heart's content and stopped in every charity shop for a few mindless but enjoyable books. I practiced my photography using the most random things as subjects and scheduled in a daily run. So, I have established that travelling alone is not so bad afterall. Now, a little more about Edinburgh itself.

A small and beautiful city, Edinburgh has a distinct old and new town. Old town is filled with mazes of closes and alleys where Edinburgh's entire population lived in crowed tenements while new town is considered to be one of Europe's greatest examples of Georgian town planning. I explored both. I walked the Royal Mile of old town starting at the top with the Edinburgh castle and ending at the bottom with the Palace of Holyroadhouse (the Queen's official residence in Scotland and pictured above). Along the way, I peeked into a few churches and admired various statues and buildings. On my second day, I even took a tour of the undergound vaults where people used to live and work. With Princes Street, new town is the popular shopping district and is also filled with some great cafes, restaurants, and boutiques hidden on back streets and squares. I had a blast window shopping and leisurely checking out all the famous statues and former residences of well-known writers.

My favorite part of Edinburgh was Holyroad Park and Canongate. Arthur's Seat, an extinct volcano, dominates this area as it soars 823ft above the city. Last erupting 325 million years ago, it now provides locals and visitors with great veiw of the city and the eastern coastlineof Scotland...just don't climb it in flip flops!

While I still would rather travel with others, travelling alone is definitely eye-opening and definitely builds character. It is even fun! While I will definitely do it again (maybe soon), I do not think I will every feel completely comfortable dining alone.

Au Revoir.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Edinburgh Pics

View from the top of Arthur's Seat

The path to Arthur's Seat

A Statue of a Horse

A Small Side Street

Gotta Love a Man in a Kilt!

Old Town

Some More Old Town

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Grocery Stores Woes

One of the most frustrating things about living in Switzerland is the lack of store hours. All stores, including grocery stores, close by 7pm on weekdays and 6pm on Saturdays. Everything is completely closed on Sundays. If you need something unexpectedly outside of opening hours, your only option is to trek across town to the airport where there is a small grocery store with extended hours. So, as you can imagine, grocery stores are completely packed on Saturday afternoons.

Since I have a bit of flexibility in my schedule, I have adapted to these hours and usually do not find them inconvient. This weekend, however, I found myself wishing (for the frist time) there was a Kroger or Super Target around the corner.

While out on a kayaking trip with Ski Club on Saturday, I discovered that Monday is a Swiss holiday and that all stores and businesses would be closed. My thoughts immediately drifted to a visual of my refrigerator and pantry and I realized that unless I could make it to the store before closing, I would be forced to survive on old green onions, a half jar of peanut butter, and a few stale granola bars for two and a half days.

Arriving in Geneva at 5:35 still in my swimsuit and wet clothes, I bee-lined for the grocery store while making a mental grocery list. All my thoughts went out the window when I was confronted with complete chaos. What I found resembled Toys R' Us on the day they release the hottest Christmas item. There was a line to just get into the store and people were practically fighting for the few remaining carts and/or baskets. It was impossible to navigate the crowded, narrow aisles while dodging carts, strollers, and running children. I did not think things could get any worse until an employee started to discount the very last of the fruits and veggies. Shoppers started to surround this poor guy as if he was Brad Pitt stripped down naked. Even though I really wanted some fresh fruits and vegetables, I skipped the produce area seeking out any area that would not leave me with scratches and bruises. Juggling the most random items (What can I make with prosciutto, yogurt, oatmeal, and cashews?) in my arms, I just wanted to get the heck out of there! I soon discovered that would not be so easy when I encounted what seemed to be a mile long wall of people waiting to check out. If I had had enough cereal and milk and at home to last until Tuesday, I would have jumped shipped but I knew that I had absolutely nothing at home. So, I braved the line and waited impatiently. Of course, the 15 people in front of me all seemed to have one problem or another. One could forgot to weigh her veggies. Another could not get his credit card to work while another one dropped a can of pasta sauce. Finally, I reached the front of the line, checked out and payed as if I was being chased by a shark. It is a good thing that I one of those random items I bought was a bottle of wine!

Au Revoir.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Munich Pics

Let's Explore!

The Hofbrauhaus

Some beer...

Another Beer Garden

Surfing the Isar River...these guys were awesome!

Marienplatz, Munich's Main Square

Munich, Germany

Wow. I cannot believe that it has been a month since my last post! I am not sure where the time as gone. We have had a lot going on but at the same time nothing much to report. Is that possible? At any rate, I am back!

Last week, we put the Daewood to another test as we headed to both Milan and Munich. Jiggy had a conference in Milan so I (of course, Schlopy came too) tagged along and enjoyed the ammenities (gym, spa, etc) of a nice hotel. I also bummed around Milan and hit some shops of the world's biggest fashion capital. Surprisingly, Jignesh was the only one that benefited from those days out.

After Jignesh's conference, we spent the rest of the week and part of the weekend in Munich, Germany. The drive from Milan to Munich took us through four countries (Italy, Switzerland, Austria, and Germany) and treated us to some of the most amazing scenery I have ever seen. We were not disappointed in our final destination either.

A city full of history and culture, Munich is also diverse, vibrant, and liveable. Since Munich has endless things to see and do, we did not have time to tackle everything. There is, however, no doubt that we caught the contangious buzz of this southern German city. Jignesh, of course, loved the beer gardens and halls and took every opportunity to visit them. While Jignesh endulged in his vice, I was more than happy to sample one of mine. Pretzels. At the beginning of the weekend, I tried to match every beer of Jignesh with a pretzel of my own. However, a girl can only eat so much bread so I quickly gave up (not before trying a delicious pretzel soup) and started to try some of the other local specialities. Aside from drinking lots of beer and eating lots of pretzels, we also checked out all the main sights and walked around the Isar River.

An extremely friendly bike city with expansive parks and gardens, one of the best things we did was join Mike's Bike Tours (www.mikesbiketours.com/munich) for a half day tour of the city. With Matt as our trusty and entertaining guide, the tour was suppose to be a leisurely, fun way to learn about the city, its history, and its buildings. Jignesh, however, thought we was competing in the Tour de France and after attempting a wheelie, came away with some incredible road rash. Only Jignesh!

Since we loved Munich so much, it is a good thing we left some things on the list as an excuse to return!

Au Revoir.

Friday, May 6, 2011

7 Year Itch

Last Sunday, May 1st, marked our 7th wedding anniversary! Despite the stigma of this particular anniversary, I have to admit that there is no itching here. In fact, it feels like just yesterday that our wedding party went missing in Tijuana and we set our hotel curtains on fire. While we normally try to take a weekend away for our anniversary, this year we decided to stay home since we had been on the go with my parents for the previous three weeks. Instead, we bummed around Geneva all day with a pub stop followed by lunch at an outdoor Italian restaurant. With absolutely incredible weather, it was a perfectly relaxing day. Typically, we do not make a big deal of anniversary gifts but we both wanted to exchange them this year. However, when the day came around, neither one of us had found the time to hit the stores. For some reason, I was a bit upset. I did not care about not receiving a present but was mad at myself for not making the effort to make the day truly special. So, Jignesh came up with the idea to turn the entire month of May into annivesary month. we have decided to surprise each other with small gifts or gestures for the next few weeks. Week one brought an hour long home massage for me and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups purchased at the American Market and snuck into his computer bag for Jignesh! Let the fun continue!

Au Revoir.

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding

I am not a huge follower of the British Royal Family and definitely do not understand the obsession with them but having lived in London for a bit and currently receiving BBC television, it is impossible not to be caught up in the craziness of the Royal Wedding. And it is crazy! Today has been declared a UK national holiday. TV coverage has been non-stop since the announcement of the engagement with every detail from the flowers to the invites being disected ten times over. Souvenirs of every type have been produced to commenerate the wedding (I have even seen a refrigarator with a huge photo of William and Catherine on the front). People have been camping along the parade route for days. And lawn parties are being held in every major park as well as private gardens. Of course, this all being done in a proper, organized manner. While I am not joining others to view the wedding, I do admit that as I write this, I am curled up on the couch with a cup of coffee watching all the events unfold live. And yes, I am even getting anxious to see the dress.

I will never comprehend the hoopla over two people and their wedding (not to mention the money spent!) but it is fantastic to see the country come together and show such pride. So, I guess, without further ado...Congrats William and Catherine!

Au Revoir

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Easter in Paris!

The Louvre

Moulin Rouge

Enjoying our daily breakfast of croissants at an amazing neighborhood bakery

Dad and the Eiffel Tower

Mom and Dad at Place de Concorde

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Out and About in Switzerland!

Top of the Jura

Megeve, France

Murten, Switzerland

Which Way Do We Go?

Top of Mount Pilatus

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Exploring Switzerland

Since returning from our trip to Rome, We (my parents and I) have been busy exploring Switzerland (and neighboring France) by car, foot, and bike! Using the small Swiss town of St. Cergue as a starting point, we hiked the Jura and were rewarded with some amazing views of Geneva, Lac Leman, and the surrounding countryside. We also visited the French ski town of Megeve for some window shopping and a another hike. Pedaling around Lac Geneva, we ventured off the main roads and discovered a few small, idealic Swiss villages. Les Carroz, a favorite French ski resort of Jignesh and myself, was also on the list. Over the weekend, we packed our bags for an overnight trip to Mount Pilatus and Lucerne. Situated in central Switzerland, Lucerne is German speaking and feels worlds away from Geneva in both looks and attitude. Due to its location on the shores of Lake Lucerne and within sight of Mount Pilatus and the Alps, Lucerne was voted the fifth most popular tourist destination in the world by Tripadvisor and is considered by many to be the most beautiful city in Switzerland! With an old city full of character buildings and the medievil Chapel Bridge (pictured above), I would agree. We had a wonderful time just walking and taking in the scenery. Mount Pilatus, home to the world's steepest cogwheel railway, seems to explode from nowhere with a height of 6,982 ft. Although we were unable to take the cogwheel due to the snow, we did ride the gondola to the top for some amazing views. We even witnessed a skydiver take off from the top of the mountain! To return to the bottom, we opted to hike rather than use the roundtrip ticket on the gondola. On the trip home, we randomly pulled off the highway to check out the small town of Murten. Not knowing what to expect, we were rewarded with many well preserved attractions from the past...a beautiful castle, a ring wall, and numerious churches. Sometimes the best places are those that are overlooked by the travel books and blogs and this was no exception! What a week of exploring my adopted country!

Au Revoir.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Rome, Italy

Mama and Papa Osz are in town for a visit so last week we headed to Rome, Italy. Since I have been to Rome before, I was able (sort of) to serve as a tourguide for the newbies. Despite some lingering jet lag from their flight from the US just two days before, Mom and Dad wanted to hit the ground running and we wasted no time seeing the sights. With gorgeous weather on our side and comfortable walking shoes, we were able to see all the major attractions in three days. While Mom was awed by the Colosseum, Dad was impressed with Vatican City and the Sistine Chapel. Of course, we also peopled watched in front of the Trevi Fountain, window shopped on Via dei Condotti, walked up the Spanish Steps, wandered through the Roman Forum, and checked out the painters in Piazza Novano. We even explored some of the more secluded areas such as Villa Borghese (Rome's answer to Central Park). Of course, you cannot visit Italy without endulging in some local food and wine. Lunch everyday was a slice of pizza and a huge scoop (or two) of gelato. Dinner was our big meal of the day and we made an effort to scope out mom and pop restaurants favored by locals. Our favorite, Dell' Omo, has been family run for 50 years and serves authentic, homemade regional dishes in a dining room that looks like a stereoptypical "grandmother's kitchen." If you are looking for a true Italian experience and are not in a hurry, this is the place! On our last day in Rome, we headed outside the city for a day trip to the ancient village of Tivoli. Since it was Mom and Dad's 39th wedding anniversary, we had to stroll through the romantic gardens and fountains of Villa d' Este and hiked through the ravine of Villa Gregoriana. Although we never found the medevil bridge that Mom wanted to see, it was the perfect escape from the crowds of Rome. What a way to end the trip! Au Revoir Au Revoir.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Rome with Mama and Papa Osz!

Just Another Ruin...

The Roman Forum

The Pantheon

Trevi Fountain
Gelato...Umm, Umm Good

St. Peter's Square

Friday, March 25, 2011

Movie, Pizza, and Lots of Wine

While we love to learn about new cultures, it is also fun to introduce others to a bit of American life. For some time now, Jignesh has wanted to introduce a few of his co-workers to one of his favorite movies, "Office Space." So, earlier this week we hosted a mid-week movie night.

Unceremoniously released in 1999 with little fanfare and almost no marketing, Office Space flopped at the box office. However, when released on video, it quickly found a following and soon became an American cultural icon. In fact, this movie has become one of the most quoted in the last decade. If you haven't seen this movie, go rent it today. If you have seen it, watch it again! You cannot go wrong with this intelligently constructed social satire of corporate America (or any general office environment).

Although our living room is small and seating was limited, we made up with lots of yummy homemade food and packed the frig with beer. And what did people drink? Wine. Lots and lots of wine. Only in Europe would people attend a casual movie night and drink wine. Oh well, at least Jignesh is stocked for the next 3 months!

Au Revoir

Monday, March 21, 2011

Torino, Italy!

Last weekend we headed to Torino (Turin), Italy with our good friends Riefqah and Cesar (oh, Schlopy came too)! Located in northern Italy and the host of the 2006 Winter Olympics, Torino is a bustling city known for its industry (headquarters for the car companies Fiat and Alfa Romeo are here) but highlighted with a gorgeous city center. The 2.5 drive from Geneva is a beautiful one as you pass through the Alps, the Mont Blanc tunnel, and many small, rural Italian towns. The number of castles and forts perched on hilltops just off the highway is amazing!

We stayed at Townhouse 70 (http://www.townhouse.it/th70/), a small boutique hotel in the city center. The best part of the hotel? The delicous breakfast served around a huge communal table! Umm Umm Good!

While we originally had loose plans to see all the main sights (cathedrals, museums, etc), I have to admit that we spent most of the weekend shopping, eating, and taking loads of pictures... we had to escape the constant rain somehow! And yes, our wallets were a bit lighter at the end of the weekend as we all scored some beautiful Italian threads. Our stomachs, however, were a bit bigger after visiting several pizzerias, pastry shops and a more formal restaurant serving traditional (and very interesting) northern Italian dishes.

Before reluctantly heading back to Geneva on Sunday, we visited the Lingotto. Once the largest car factory in the world, the Lingotto impressed architect Cesar as with its interesting design and test track on the roof! Today, this building is home to a shopping mall, cinema, university, hotel, and concert hall.

The weekend was so short that we even missed one of the most important and famous streets in Torino. Ooops! I guess we will just have to go again...

Au Revoir.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The French Riviera

Last weekend, we headed south to the French Riviera. Nice, France is located in the Cote d' Azur and shares the coast with its more famous neighbors of Monaco, Marseille, and Cannes.
For some, this area is the quintessential Mediterranean playground while others consider it overdeveloped and trapped in its expensive image. We found it relaxing and captivating. Leading up to the trip, it had been a long week and I have to admit that we were both not expecting much. At 5 hours, the drive was a bit long for only two nights and the forecast called for rain all weekend. And with such a good deal on the hotel, how good could it really be? Well, we were proven wrong the minute we arrived. Our hotel room was amazing. It was modern and surprisingly spacious. With ceiling to floor windows overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and a huge balcony complete with a lounge chairs and a table, we were in heaven. The bed seemed to be as big as our living room and Schlopy had a blast trying out all the chairs and comfy sofa. Furthermore, we were excited to learn that Nice's annual Carnaval festival would be taking place that weekend and that our balcony would provide front row seats to the all the parades and activities. Oh, and despite being a bit overcast, the weather was temperate with not a drop of rain in sight.

After a great night's and much needed sleep on Friday night, we had a long, lazy, and amazing breakfast before heading out for a long walk on along on the Promenade des Anglais (Nice's popular seaside boulevard). We meandered throught the market and then climbed the hill to the chataeu for some amazing views of the city and sea. Slowly making our way back to the hotel so we could catch the afternoon Flower Parade, we stopped at a Thai restaurant for take-out and had a picnic on the water. With a glass of wine, we were entertained with fantastic floats, dancers, musicians, and other characters in the Flower Parade. We also loved people watching as silly string and streamers filled the sky. With a few hours left before stores closed, we hit the city center for some shopping and more sightseeing. After dinner at Poco Loco, a lively mexican joint, we headed back to the hotel and caught the spectacle of Carnaval's Night Parade.

Before heading home on late Sunday afternoon with a stunning drive through Provence, we decided to spend a few hours in the famous city of Cannes. Although Nice undoubtedly has money, it is also a working city as it is the fifth largest in France. Cannes is all image. The amount of money is incredible and on display. The port is filled with boats that start at 15 million dollars and dogs wear diamond studded collars. Women are dressed in nothing but the latest and most expensive designs while men are distinctively distinguished. Although it may not be our type of place to live, it was fun to spend a few hours wandering around and imagining a life full of yacts and diamonds.

I am not sure if the weekend went by so fast because it was crazy short or because we had such a great time. We were together (with our son!) in an great city and enjoyed the benefits of a nice hotel. There is definitely something to be said for just "getting away" and I think it was just what we needed.

Au Revoir!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Nice and Cannes Pictures

The famous yachts of Cannes
Carnaval's Night Parade

An interesting character of Carnaval

Carnaval's Flower Parade

Flower Parade viewed from our hotel balcony!

Some Carnaval Fun

One of Nice's Ports

Nice's Coastline

Hanging out in Nice

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Fire! Fire! Fire!

Yesterday started out like any other Tuesday. I played tennis in the morning followed by a great run by the lake. After a stop at the grocery store, I headed home for a few hours before teaching some afternoon tennis lessons. Returning to my car after my lessons, I was looking forward to a quiet evening with Jignesh as french class was on Febuary break (yes, all Switzerland schools have a Febuary "ski" break). Well, the rest of the day did not exactly go to plan when I instinctively checked my mobile (which I had left in the car) while pulling out of the parking lot. A text from our neighbor, Frederic, indicated that there had been a minor fire in the flat directly above ours! Completely frantic and worried about Schlopy, who was home alone, I made like Mario Andretti and raced throught the streets of Geneva towards home. What I found was terrifying. Five firetrucks, 3 ambulances, and multiple police cars blocked the street. Onlookers had stopped to check out the commotion as dozens of emergency workers flooded the area. I slammed into the first available parking spot, grabbed only my keys, and ran as fast as I could to our building (yes, I might have knocked over an innocent pedestrian or two). Shaking, upse, and scared, I skidded to a halt and attemped to explain in French to the nearest firefighter that I lived on the third floor. Obviously my French was getting me nowhere as the guy just stared at me. Switching to Frenglish, I desperately repeated that my dog was in there. After calming me down, the firefighter found a English speaking colleague who escorted me to my apartment where I was relieved to find a terrified but safe Schlopy. While our flat was untouched except for some smoke and minor water damage, the flat above us was completely destroyed! Almost nothing remains in the charred ruins. The common areas of the building are a mess with broken windows, ash, and odors. I am sure the next few weeks will be filled with cleaners and repairmen. The cause of the fire is still unknown but is rumored to be caused by the older and medicated lady who lives in the destroyed flat. She was taken to the hospital for smoke inhalation while a resident from the fifth floor was rescued by ladder. Thankfully, both have recovered. I cannot begin to imagine what would have happened if the fire had lasted just a few minutes longer. While these events definitely made an everyday Tuesday a bit more exciting, I hope that next Tuesday will return to its mundane ways!

Au Revoir!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Waka Waka..It's Time for Africa!

Marrakech, a city in the north African country of Morocco, is one of the most interesting and unusual places I have visited in my expanding list of destinations. Since Marrakech marked my first time in Africa as well as my first time in a Muslim country, I had no idea what to expect. Upon arrival, I found an overwhelming city of narrow alleys overflowing with donkey carts, bicycles, scooters, and kids constantly offering to show you around (for a price). But, after further examimation, I also found a city full of culture and religion that still manages to be inviting and beautiful despite the chaos. Jignesh repeatedly compared it to a calm India.

The Medina (old city) showcases traditional Morocco. Convential dress of head scarves and djellabas (long, loose-fitting robes) are abudant and five times a day the call to prayer from various mosques fill the air. Women are seen carrying buckets on their way to and from hammams (local steam baths) while men are either making or selling local goods. While there are a few sites to see (Saadian tombs, Ben Youssef Madrasa, and Koutoubia Mosque), the main highlights of the Medina are the Souks and the Djemaa el Fna.

The Souks (markets) can easily be a two day event on their own! Set in small, winding back alleys that are not always found on maps, thousands of vendors sell everything from spices to lanterns. It is a never ending madness of colors, shouting, and speeding scooters. While it is a fun to simple get lost while window shopping, it is a blast to actually enter the stall and bargain! Bargaining is expected and if you master the game, you can score some great deals while simultanously getting to know the locals and their culture.

Djemaa el Fna, one of Africa's busiest squares, is the heartbeat of the Medina. By day, locals and tourists gather to watch dancers, musicians, acrobats, and story-tellers while enjoying fresh squeezed orange juice from one of several stands. And yes, there are snake charmers throughout the square hypnotizing cobras with various instruments. By night, Djemaa el Fna becomes a huge open air restuarant as food booths take over.

If you want to escape all the mayhem of the Medina, there are a few options. One of the most popular is to stay at a riad. Riads, traditional Moroccan homes with interior courtyards and rooftop terraces, are commonly remodeled into restaurants and B&B's. Riad Safa (http://www.riad-safa.com/), our chosen home for the weekend, was a wonderful oasis. Our first night we enjoyed an amazing tajine dinner and every morning we started our day with a traditional Moroccan breakfast. In the evenings we got relaxed with some other guests and learned a lot about Moroccan culture, politics and everyday life by the riad's caretaker, Brahim.

If a riad does not do the tick of calming your nevers after a day of bargaining and nearly getting killed by a scooter, then head to Gueliz. Gueliz, a neighborhood outside of the old city, is modern and liberal. Fashion reflects western influences as store sell popular name brands. New and renovated flats/houses line the strees. Restaurants even sell alcohol and a few nightclubs provide an active nightlife.

While not necessarily relaxing, this trip was undoubtedly eye-opening and demonstrates one of the reason why I love to travel...to see and experience different cultures, religions, and ways of life.

Au Revoir!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Marrakech Pics

The heart and soul of Marrakech are the souks (markets)

A popular mode of transporting goods

A bearded Jignesh was often mistaken for everything from a local to an Italian

Traditional tajine pots

An unusually calm Medina alley

Locals making and selling their wares

Jemaa-El-Fna Square, Marrakech's heart of the old city

Just two of the thousands of stray cats

Marrakech is known as the "red city" because of its numerous red buildings