Armchair Traveler ~ Classic National Geographic Magazine ~ January 1943

On a recent visit to Boise, Idaho, I purchased three old National Geographic Magazines at the Main Library. The January 1943 issue has 6 articles, including 16 pages of illustrations in color. As it was published during World War II, five of the six articles pertain to the War. Two articles specifically stood out to me.

The first, “American Bombers Attacking from Australia” contains a lot of information about U.S airmen at an active war base. The correspondent spent time with the airmen, including going on several dangerous missions. The 20 page article takes the reader into the heroic lives  of these airmen. The photos are a fascinating look book at history.

As I read the article, I was thinking of how this and similar articles would be eagerly read by the families and friends of military who were stationed in the South Pacific. There is a terrific two page map and I bet it was the first time that many people saw where the Gilbert Islands, Solomon Islands, etc. were located.

The second article, “Your Dog Joins Up” is on a slightly lighter note. But again, it brings the war home to the reader. Any owner of a dog would relate to the article and learn a lot about canine training. The author spent time at a K-9 training center in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. It was the first time the US trained dogs to use in a war.

Dogs were trained as messengers, carrying medical supplies, dragging telephone wires to the front lines plus guarding and patrolling. The author points out that by day, a dog could be friendly but at night, on patrol, that dog would become a suspicious, watchful beast.

 

Check out your library or used book stores for ideas for your journeys. The articles and photos will conjure up future journeys and/or have you reminiscing about previous journeys. And, they are also great history lessons — which is a fabulous part of taking a journey.

 

Savor your journeys, near or far, real or imagined.

Armchair Traveler ~ Classic National Geographic Magazines ~ Jan 1941

On a recent visit to Boise, Idaho a friend suggested that we visit the main library as it has a room where they sell donated books and magazines. In addition to some very good books, they had the most marvelous old magazine selection. I immediately spotted several National Geographic Magazines from the 1940’s (Jan 1941, Jan 1943 and Oct 1946) and purchased them.

 

Each is a fascinating look not only at travel but also at history. The January 1941 magazine has 7 articles, including stories about Winchester, England’s Early Capital, a British West Indian Interlude and the Flame-Feathered Flamingos of Florida. Two of the articles feature color photos. It’s fascinating comparing these magazines to a current National Geographic. 

A favorite article is “Turning Back Time in the South Seas” by Thor Heyerdahl, of Kon-Tiki fame. He and his wife spent several months living on the sparsely inhabited island of Fatu-Hiva, in the Marquesas Islands, French Polynesia. The black and white photos and captivating story transported me to a different time and place.

I’ve visited both Tahiti and Fiji and love the South Pacific. It was eye-opening seeing it through their perspective and I thoroughly enjoyed being immersed in their exotic adventures in this remote part of our world. 

Another article, “Classic Greece Merges Into 1941 News” has 19 illustrations of Greece.  The photos show ancient Greece merging with the Greece of 1941, which was under attack by Italy. I studied Greek history and it was the first European country I visited. It holds many marvelous memories (especially Athens and Delphi), made more so after seeing these incredible photos of a beautiful country. 

 

 

Check out your library or used book stores for ideas for your journeys, both real and armchair. The articles and photos that you find will conjure up future travels and/or have you reminiscing about previous journeys. Plus they are a gateway to exploring the history of an area you wish to visit. 

 

Savor your journeys … past, present and future …

Travel Memoir ~ Thailand

In a recent post, I wrote how foreign currency left over from a journey can evoke marvelous travel memories. The Thai currency I have certainly fits the bill. It brought back marvelous memories of my first trip to Asia (solo traveler) as I loved every minute of that fabulous journey. I explored Tokyo, Thailand, Hong Kong and Honolulu. 

I spent about five days days in Bangkok, taking several half day tours, including the Floating Market (fascinating) and the Royal Palaces (beautiful) tours. The people were delightful and very helpful. It was off-season so not that crowded with tourists.

It was the first time I ate Thai food and quickly became a fan. 

The hotel where I stayed (Siam Inter Continental) was fabulous. I fondly recall meeting a Pan Am flight crew and we all celebrated Thanksgiving at the hotel. It was a very memorable meal, high-lighted by a fun group, a special menu for the Holiday, including turkey, French wine and rather than pumpkin pie, we were served sweet potato pie. It was another first for me and it was delicious. We had lots of laughs and very much enjoyed Thanksgiving abroad.

I checked online and unfortunately the hotel was torn down in 2002 to make way for a shopping mall. I was sad when I read the article; however, memories are forever.

http://2bangkok.com/2bangkok-masstransit-intercon.html

After several days, I flew north to Chiang Mai. It is breathtakingly beautiful and I was very fortunate that I went before it was “discovered” and it was also off-season. Temples were beautiful to explore as was the botanic gardens. People were warm and friendly and eager to please. 

I reserved a ½ day tour to see the surrounding area. As I was the only person on the tour, the guide asked me if I’d prefer a private car or go on his motorcycle. Of course, I opted for the motorcycle. It was a memorable afternoon. We explored several villages where people enjoyed showing us what they crafted. We stopped for delicious local food.  Somehow we managed to carry my “souvenir treasures” on the motorcycle as we headed back to the hotel.

In addition to currency, post cards make memorable mementos, They are wonderful to look at years after a trip as they will conjure up memories of your journeys. Several are shown on this post. 

Savor your journeys… current ones as well as those that you have taken and are re-living via your memories.

 

Armchair Traveler ~ Foreign Currency Evokes Memories

 

 

 

 

 

Armchair Traveler ~ Foreign Currency Evokes Memories

I have a large bowl where over the years I have put currency from some of my travels. It’s fun to spread out the coins and bills as a great way to remember past trips and special moments.

Looking at the Austrian currency, I fondly remember a trip to Vienna with a friend. It was one of my first trips to Europe. We took a local bus to Schonbrunn Palace and as we did not want to wait for the English speaking tour, we joined the German speaking tour. We looked about at paintings or artwork when everyone else did and thoroughly enjoyed it, even though we did not speak a word of German.

Schonbrunn is a gorgeous palace with beautiful gardens. We loved the pastries (sacher torte a specialty) and Viennese coffee at Demels and other pastru shops. Vienna has many other memories including walking about the beautiful city and meeting friendly Austrians at the Giant Ferris wheel in the evenings. It was great fun and a marvelous introduction to Europe.

The currency from Hungary reminds me of my journey there in the early 1980’s while it was still part of the USSR. As I was on a tour, there was no time to wander about by myself. I remember so much gray (it was a November), but also having great fun at a disco, marvelous food and Tokay Wine and Budapest being a beautiful city.

Coins from Denmark remind me of Tivoli Gardens, a magical amusement part in Copenhagen. The city has many beautiful parks, especially Kings Garden. I took a mini tour to Legoland (great fun). And I can taste the fabulous open sandwiches, great desserts and fondly recall the friendly people.

In addition to looking at your photos or reading about your favorite places, it’s enjoyable to look at mementos of your travels. Ask friends about their mementos – share your love of travel with others. Even if you cannot travel to a place you dream of, keep dreaming. It will become a part of you.

Be an armchair traveler … learn all about your favorite places. Study their language, cuisine and culture. You might learn more than tourists who travel abroad but never become travelers.

Most important, have fun and be creative as you “journey” to a favorite spot … even if for now, it is a dream.

Savor your journeys… real and imagined.

 

The Journey of a Lifetime

Should someone ask you if you have been on or are planning your “journey of a lifetime”

Smile broadly and proclaim, “YES, I AM ON IT”

  • Your journey of a lifetime is not checking off places or things to do on a “bucket list”
  • Rather, it is every moment of YOUR life, from birth to passing on … 
  • Always remember that it is YOUR journey… do what makes you happy, gives  you fulfillment.. fall madly in love, travel the world or not, dream, walk sandy beaches, dine & laugh with friends, be a hermit, read, write, teach, dance to music others do not hear, gaze at the stars in wonder, encourage others on their journey  … 
  • Be in awe of the universe …
  • Create your destiny …
  • Each of us is on a different journey with different experiences … 
  • Savor each moment of YOUR journey of a lifetime

There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an examination, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning.  – J. Krishnamurti

The Armchair Traveler ~ 20th Century Travel Posters

Recently, I was browsing books in Barnes and Noble and came across “20th Century Travel” by Jim Heimann and Allison Silver. It is a marvelous book detailing the changes in travel (in both text and posters/ads) from the grand tours of wealthy tourists to the jet age. It’s a terrific book to browse and dream and whet your appetite for travel. I added some favorites below.

  • Think about your favorite places.
  • Immerse yourself in the images you create.
  • Visualize the glamour associated with embarking on a deluxe ocean liner or taking a flight to a favorite spot or a place you have always wanted to visit.
  • Check out the posters below and imagine taking a journey in the beginning of the 20th century, before travel became popular.
  • Imagine yourself on a beautiful beach or an ocean liner or a Pan Am Clipper flying to Asia or Europe.
  • Have fun and enjoy your dreams.

Plan your journeys using the mystique of your imagination. Pick a spot and learn all about it – its history, culture, cuisine, art, literature, etc. The world is yours to explore. Savor it.

 

The Armchair Traveler

When you desire to take a journey but circumstances prohibit you from doing so, what to do? Become an armchair traveler …

  • Immerse yourself in your dream destination (France, Italy, Montana, Nepal…pick a place you have always dreamed of visiting) …
  • Check out your library or book store for photo books, historical non-fiction or fiction set in your dream place …
  • Prepare special dinners (or a party!) with the foods and wines of the area …
  • Learn a foreign language …
  • Listen to music that transports you …
  • Find movies set in your special place …
  • Too many places to narrow it down to just one destination?
    • For ideas, peruse “1,000 Places to See Before You Die” and “1,000 Places to see in the United States and Canada Before You Die” …
    • Each month, pick a different destination to immerse yourself …
      • Find the place where you feel most comfortable …
      • Discover new places …
    • Most important, have fun and be creative as you journey to a favorite spot … even if for now, it is a dream …