Wednesday, September 24, 2008


Naples!! What an unusual experience. I can honestly say I have never gotten lost in a city until that one. Though not lost for long, I was trudging quite casually along back alleys and through residential areas because I wanted to see how the Napoli Italians truly lived. I was given no strange looks and never bothered... I suppose because I don't look too different from the people from the region, or perhaps at 6"4", I look fairly unmoved.

We all sat around a table and she brought us two carafes of homemade wine and that was the beginning of an eating experience I will never forget. The salad was made from fresh ingredients and fresh herbs grown in the window. She fed all nine of us salad, wine, chicken, fish, pasta, and deserts all homemade, all amazing, all a blessing.

I will say that the best part of the experience was the family and friends present to share the experience. I can't say enough about how wonderful these precious moments were and how unforgettable.

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I was a initially very disappointed at the 15 ft piles of garbage in the streets until I heard about the garbage strike. Then I was just glad to know the city managers were not just bad at their jobs. I saw a real communist rally... Okay nuff said about that. My son saw his first castle and I loved watching him have that experience.

Once you get out into the country side of Naples, then you see the romance of it all, but the city is a living bustling wonder that must be seen by foot. Do not be disappointed over the graffiti on the old statues, fountains, buildings and walls. It is just proof that the napoli youth are very artistic like their forefathers and that art will not be denied expression. Italy is the seat of reat art and has been so long that perhaps there are not enough statues left to carve for the number of artistic spirits running free.

Bring a good attitude and carry your money close to your heart so that theives and smooth operators don't steal from you.

DO NOT BUY LAPTOPS, VIDEO RECORDERS, CAMERAS, OR ANY ELECTRONICS ON THE STREET. you wil get back to your room and find you have just purchased a box of soap or rocks.
They are faster and smarter than you unless you just keep walking. Pleas trust me on this. I saw more than than a few people sad, robbed, and diappointed. These people do not represent the Italian spirit. They are still just people who are doing whatever they can to feed their families, though dispicable and ugly in my opinion.

Caution is very important and I would not suggest you go wandering around the back street as I have done. You may be the statistic news often covers. I as just very lucky. Safety makes for a wonderful vacation.

Monday, September 1, 2008

You Must See Japan!

The Relaxing Gardens of Japan!!!

Castle of

That's me in the
doorway bending
over so that I didn't
bump my head.
Needless to say I
did not go into
the castle. I would
not have fit in the
narrow halls and
tiny stairwells.

Here are some photos from my trip to
Hiroshima and Tokyo. The cities were
the cleanest big cities I have ever seen
and the people were extremely nice to me.

I hope that when you plan to travel that
you have a chance to see how beautiful
Japan is. There is nothing like the culture
and the food was amazing.

I have heard that my hometown was extremely
hot this summer. I can tell you, nothing beats
the shores and beaches of Japan when you are
weary of the Texas heat. Except maybe the
beaches of Hawaii, but that's another story.

The hospitality of the Japanese people made
it very easy for me even though I don't speak
any Japanese.

Disney Japan is also a very cool place.

In one way I was very blessed in that there was no reason
for me to go shopping for clothes. They have nothing in
my size in the country. I could fit three small Japanese
people in my jacket. I did not see anything in my size
anywhere over there.
No one made me feel uncomfortable when I got lost and
when I needed to find the apple store in downtown Tokyo.
The ladies from the department store pulled out the phone
directory and found the address and walked me down the
street to find what I was looking for. This is an apple
person's dream...a Three story Apple Store.
I was in Heaven.