Showing posts from February, 2018

A Look Back at Our June Trip to Quebec City

Here I am, with stitches in my mouth after periodontal surgery for a gum graft.  It's not fun--and it's not painless!--and it's definitely a reminder that not all of sabbatical/gap year(s) would be adventure, travel, and yummy food.  (I sipped some chicken broth for lunch and will heat up some beef broth for dinner...)  However, this is a good opportunity to reflect on the past year of more frenzied activity and back-fill some gaps.
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I'd like to take this blog post back to the end of our first 2-month stay in Quebec.  After our classes were over in Montreal, Will and I stayed in Canada an extra week to do some more sightseeing.  Probably the most memorable part of that week was a short jaunt to Quebec City.

We'd visited Quebec City before and absolutely adored it, so it was on the top of our must-do-again list for the week off.  While Montreal is a more cosmopolitan city--bigger, more diverse, more options for dining and entertainment, etc.--Queb…

Is the Grass Really Greener on the Other Side of...Chicago?

When Will and I were last in Italy, in 2009, we had a simple and spectacular lunch near Positano, complete with breathtaking scenery spread out below us.  Anticipating the famous hike along the Via degli dei which we planned on taking for our after-lunch stroll, we were just loving everything.  The fresh ingredients in our food, the enviable cliff-side view, the heroic bus driver who somehow made it up the steep and winding road to this amazing destination perched on--what seemed--the top of the world.

In our jubilant mood, we fell into conversation with our friendly server, a young man with much better English than our guidebook Italian.  He asked us where we came from, and we said Chicago.  He seemed to find it miraculous that someone from Chicago could find mere Amalfi coastline of Italy so charming.  In surprise, we inquired if he didn't just absolutely LOVE living in his town!  He said that it's "ok," but he'd prefer to visit Chicago.  Gazing around at all …