Don’t Know What to Eat on the Road? Try This!

So, you’ve decided to take a road trip. Yes, you’ve packed some snacks, but didn’t really relish the idea of taking sandwiches for lunch, dinner, or breakfast for that matter. And you don’t like the fast food selections you’ve been passing.

Well, there is a good alternative. You may come across a larger food store, such as an Albertsons, Winco, Kroger, Raleys, Safeway, Walmart, or some other. Many of these larger supermarkets will have sandwiches and other items ready-made and kept refrigerated, just waiting for you! And, at some of these stores, there may even be a full cafeteria of items as well. And if you’re a Costco member, good food is available there, too!

You can stop and eat a hot meal at some. Or, you can select from their refrigerated products, which, in addition to sandwiches, can include wraps, burritos, and salads. And some of the items can be had for less than at some fast food places!

Then, at the same store, you can find individual sized drinks as well. Then you can stop at that nearby rest stop just down the road. Oftentimes there are tables available, along with restrooms. And sometimes they just happen to have an awesome view as well, and you’re set!

I’ve done this and it’s great! Oh, just don’t forget those snacks from home, too! We still like those!

Have a great trip!

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Try a Cruise This Summer!

Vacation time is here and there’s a great many choices out there! And one choice is to take a cruise.

A cruise? Isn’t that for the very rich and wouldn’t it be very boring, with lots of old people and boring days at sea? Most likely, the answer is no, and has been for a long time.

There are all kinds of cruises and cruise/fly combos out there. And even the ‘standard’ Caribbean and European cruises don ‘t fit that stereotype.

Advantages of a cruise? There are a great variety of types of cruises. For all kinds of people and tastes. There are cruises to Antarctica, cruises along rivers, more intimate cruises on smaller vessels, cruises that drop you off on a secluded beach or island, where you create your own adventure from there, and so on.

On many cruises, you can visit several places, with most of the time at sea being at night and tours during the day.

Oftentimes, on the larger vessels, you may have a great variety of entertainment and dining options, so that staying on board can be a viable option as opposed to taking tours at each port of call.

Cruise prices are more competitive now and within reach of more people today.

In 1992, I took a Caribbean cruise and it was great! I visited Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guadalupe, Grenada, Caracas, and Aruba, and took day tours at each port of call. And the ship was large enough to provide various entertainment options. It was far from boring and, at the same time, I saw that it accommodated the varying tastes of different kinds of passengers, too. And it shattered my stereotypes of cruising.

A few years earlier, my cousins went on a cruise where they had some beach time on what amounted to “their own beach” for a short amount of time. They, too, had a great time. Another person I know has gone on several cruises in North America and Europe and never had a bad time on any of them.

Are there disadvantages? Sure. Destinations can change due to weather, civil unrest at a port of call, health problems on board, and mechanical problems. One cruise my cousins went on was disrupted by a hurricane. Another person I know, was on the cruise following mine in 1992, and had to miss Caracas due to riots having occurred the day before. And of course there are the norovirus stories and recently the stories of cruise ships that had to be towed back to port.

Fortunately, these are less common than the media would have you believe. So, how to plan a cruise? First, do your research. If you know a good travel agent, use them. If not, find one. Booking a cruise yourself can be fraught with mishaps. An experienced travel agent can be sure that all your connections are viable and, if something goes wrong, they are much more able to help you than you can help yourself.

Also, get a passport if you don’t already have one, and if you do, make sure that there is more than 6 months left to renew it. It will make life much easier.

So, if you haven’t ever taken a cruise and want to do something different this year, book a cruise!

Bon voyage!

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Don’t Jump In The Water!

June has just begun now, and the weather has warmed up. With that, the water beckons.

But don’t jump in yet! Unless you live in the tropics or near the tropics, chances are, the water hasn’t yet caught up to the air as far as warming goes.

Generally, the water in lakes and rivers takes longer to warm up from the summer sun than the air does. Where I live, when it first warms up significantly, people head for the nearby rivers and lakes. Unfortunately many jump in and some drown, sometimes even if they are excellent swimmers. This is because of the shock effect of the cold water. This can be exacerbated if the difference between air and water temperature is great. The coldness can easily paralyze the best swimmers if they jump in and are unaware of the temperature difference. In many areas, the water is made colder still if it is coming down from mountain areas that often still have quite a bit of melting snow on them, as in my area.

So, when is it safe to jump in? Well, it depends. Often, in areas where this is a problem, the local weather people on the local news will talk about this. In my area, it is usually late June to early July before the local rivers warm up enough to make jumping in not as dangerous. Of course, that doesn’t mean one should be reckless, as there are still other dangers, such as rip currents , undertows, and underwater obstacles. But, with common sense and a little checking with those who know, you can go and enjoy your local river and lake.

Have a great and safe summer!

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