VAUGHANTOWN IN TRUJILLO, SPAIN

Unless I'm mistaken, I believe that all of the Anglos in VaughanTown Trujillo walked with the Spaniards to Plaza Mayor every day during our one-to-one sessions.  Because of our hour-long time constraints, they were always short walks, but we made the most of our time,...
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DRENCHED IN FLORENCE

As I was packing my luggage for my train ride to Florence the following morning, I checked my train ticket, only to discover that my train wasn't leaving until 9:20 a.m.! I had told everyone that I wasn't going to see them for breakfast because I thought my train was...
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FLORENCE – MY PERFECT MEAL

When I had arrived back at the house at approximately 4:00 or 5:00 p.m., I was expecting to find Rosanna preparing dinner like the guy I photographed from a restaurant kitchen window while I was heading back to Rosanna and Marco's home. I arrived to discover that the...
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THE COBBLED TOWN OF BEAUNE

I messed up...I thought we were on to Switzerland next, but we were heading to Beaune, France! First of all, I want to say something. When I began planning this trip, I was most hesitant about visiting Paris because of all of the negative comments from EVERYBODY about...
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HIKING FROM LAUTERBRUNNEN TO GRINDELWALD

One of the things we had all experienced since arriving in Paris, and perhaps those of us who had arrived several days before, was rain. Every. Single. Day. At first, I thought it was charming but, geez, after a while, let up already! By the time I had arrived in...
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VERSAILLES – THE CHATEAU AND MARIE ANTOINETTE’S HAMLET

I set out very early with Sue and Kathy, two sisters from the tour, to Versailles. We were a little intimidated by the Metro and Rer C train, but together we made it easily to Versailles with the other early birds. I could tell that it was going to be a wonderful day...
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BANGKOK MARKETS AND WAT PHO

Do you know how both nervous and excited I was to meet my tour buddies for the first time? You never really know if you are going to mesh with the group but I have to tell you, we all hit it off immediately from the moment we said our first hellos. I was thrilled!...
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TUSCANY – SIENA, SAN GIMIGNANO, AND PISA

I woke up fat(ter) and happy the following morning after my scrumptious dinner with Marco, Rosanna, and their family. But this was a new day, and an early one to boot, because I had a twelve-hour day tour planned through Tuscany! Marco knew I had to be at the train...
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BRUGES – DISCOVERING HIDDEN TREASURES

Can we please start this blog off properly by posting something so decadent that it might only be found in Belgium? And, no, I didn't, buy these, but only because there was no room in my luggage! ;) I should have checked the price of these, for curiosity sake only!...
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BARCELONA – SAGRADA FAMILIA AND FLAMENCO

I woke up before sunrise in Barcelona because I had reserved the earliest time slot to tour Gaudi's Sagrada Familia. You'll be happy to know that there is no need to wake up that early to stand in line for the earliest reservation. I quickly discovered that as soon as...
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THE ANTWERP CENTRAL TRAIN STATION

I wanted to add a couple more images of Delft taken on my one full day there. The elderly woman in the picture above could not have timed her turn onto the street any more perfectly for me. I was very pleasantly surprised by my visit with my Delft host, Lara. We got...
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ZARAGOZA – A STUDY OF CONTRASTS

After my fun last evening eating dinner in Madrid with several of my VaughanTown friends, I headed out to the Madrid Atocha train station early the next morning with my buddy, Pat (from VaughanTown) to catch separate trains. I was on my way to Zaragoza! I must say...
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MUNICH – CONTRASTING OKTOBERFEST WITH DACHAU

I wanted to love Munich. Really! But perhaps it was due to a time constraint that I didn't see this lovely city as thoroughly as I should have that caused me to love it less than the other wondrous cities that I had just visited on this trip. Could I have slaughtered...
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VENICE – WEAVING MY WAY THROUGH THE CANALS

Venice is such a beautiful maze of a city (and I'm not exaggerating the word "maze"). Honestly, two nights there was not enough time for me to explore the city although, considering how lost we all constantly were, perhaps we did see the entire town and we just didn't...
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ROME AND THE VATICAN CITY

Buon giorno! We were at the Monterosso train platform to meet Sandro for our last drive together to Rome! As it turned out, our hotel in Rome was located on the third floor (uh, that is the fourth floor) of a building, the bottom floor being a church! One of the tour...
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BARCELONA – LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT

I remembered that I needed more toothpaste while I was walking back to my hotel to grab my luggage before heading to the train station. I saw a farmacia along the way and stepped inside. I saw the boxes of oral care products along the back wall. Seeing that they were...
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PARIS – THE MAGNIFICENT NOTRE DAME

I woke up very early the next morning in Paris because I had paid for a "Skip the Line: Notre Dame" at 9:45 a.m. And I wanted to photograph a bit before the tour began. Back on to the 69 bus, I went, feeling smug in knowing how to ride a bus now. I jumped off at Pont...
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A DAY TRIP TO DELFT

I woke up before sunrise in Amsterdam, many hours before my 10:00 a.m. tour of the Anne Frank house. I wanted to spend as much time as I could exploring the city because I was leaving by train to Delft after the tour.  I hadn't even left yet and I was already...
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VAUGHANTOWN – MAKING NEW FRIENDS IN SPAIN

I rushed back to my hotel from Madrid Centre to freshen up for the first event of what I knew would be a week of fun. Let me give you some background information first.... I met a lovely couple at a travel show in February of 2014. They told me that they had recently...
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MADRID – THE CENTRAL DISTRICT AND ALMUDENA CATHEDRAL

After lunch at La Buha, I only had a few hours to see what I could of Madrid on foot because I was attending an event that evening.  I decided to return to Catedral de la Almudena, or Almudena Cathedral, which is located directly across from the Royal Palace of...
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