“Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before.”
The Pennsylvania Amish of Lancaster County are America’s oldest Amish settlement, where thousands still live a centuries-old „Plain” lifestyle. Arriving in Amish Country allows you to step back in time to enjoy a slower, more peaceful pace – one where the horse & buggy remains a primary form of transportation, and where windmills dot the landscape, providing power harnessed from nature. There is no such thing as television, radio, cinema theatres, or other entertainment means.
Always a vital part of Lancaster County culture, the PA Amish are involved in agriculture as well as an array of businesses and cottage industries. They opened stores where they sell their excellent produce and food. These stores are to be found not only in Pennsylvania, there are two of them not far from where we live, in New Jersey.
Amish women typically wear solid-color dresses with long sleeves and a full skirt, covered with a cape on the bodice. Some less conservative groups allow the women to wear short sleeved dresses but never sleeveless. Clothing is fastened with straight pins or snaps, stockings are black cotton and shoes are also black.
To be Amish means more than just slow-paced and hardworking. In the course of time I visited several Amish farms and had the opportunity to talk to some of them. They lead a very interesting life that reminds us of very old times. Those we talked to speak of a more relaxed way of living, but a strong work ethic. The visitors can go into the Amish homes and see for themselves their life style.
The Amish people wonder what the impact of fewer farmers and more “Amish businessmen” will be, especially if people become “too well off?” They think “prosperity” is the biggest threat to the Amish way of life, although some of the Amish would put cellphones (“the world in your pocket”) at the top of the list.
The more curious tourists meet local Amish families for a sit-down home-cooked meal, where they can find out lots of details about what means to be Amish nowadays. For some of us, staying at an Amish Bed and Breakfast or guesthouse is a simple way to step away from many of the technological distractions that seem to dominate our lives. It certainly is a worth living experience. For instance, to avoid idolatry, the Amish do not have mirrors, nor do they allow photographs or pictures of images in their homes. In the Amish community, divorce is forbidden and not sanctioned in the Amish church. The decision to marry a person outside of the Amish church is one that comes with a decision to be made by the person in the community, but before they are baptized by the church.
A few more things: in the Lancaster county, PA, the visitors cen enjoy, if they so desire, bus tours through the County’s backroads and so they learn about Amish traditions while riding in comfort. Have fun while learning something new with the area’s only authentic Amish lessons, taught in their one-room schoolhouse. During the summer, an actual Amish schoolteacher will share her wisdom along with a real Amish lesson. As winter arrives and Christmas nears, see how the Amish decorate for Christmas in the one room schoolhouse and enjoy the Amish Holiday Tradition Tour. Take a guided tour of an authentic 1840’s Amish farmhouse and learn about today’s Amish lifestyle.
You could visit other Amish communities in the states of Ohio or Indiana.
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”
National parks offer an unparalleled experience for watching wildlife and appreciating the interconnected network of life in and around parks.
“A normal lake is knowable. A Great Lake can hold all the mysteries of an ocean, and then some.” — Dan Egan
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, on the largest and deepest Great Lake, includes cliffs, beaches, waterfalls, and forest for outdoor adventure.
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore encompasses over 40 miles of Lake Superior shoreline. Situated on the largest, deepest, coldest and most pristine of the Great Lakes, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore derives its name from the many sandstone cliffs that dot the shoreline. In addition to the sandstone cliffs, the park includes beaches, sand dunes, waterfalls, lakes and forest.
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
As old as continental ice sheets and as young as the 1970 Establishment Act that set aside the lakeshore for preservation and public use, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore offers countless opportunities for discovery. The naturally elevated dunes along Lake Michigan offer visitors spectacular views, all-season hiking trails, pristine rivers for paddling, and a wonderful array of wildlife to explore.
The most prominent features are the dunes above Lake Michigan, perched atop the already towering headlands. The dune overlooks at the Sleeping Bear, Empire, and Pyramid Point bluffs are about 400 feet above Lake Michigan, and with 65 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline and numerous inland lakes and streams, the park is wonderfully water oriented.
Isle Royale National Park
Surrounded by Lake Superior, Isle Royale National Park encompasses 850 square miles of natural wilderness, spacious lands, and aquatic life.
A cool climate, crystal-clear waters, and the wild North Woods forest characterize Isle Royale National Park. The park encompasses a total area of 850 square miles including submerged lands which extend over four miles out into Lake Superior, and 99% of the land mass is federally designated wilderness. The archipelago is composed of numerous parallel ridges, the result of ancient lava flows which were tilted and glaciated.
Isle Royale has 165 miles of scenic hiking trails and 36 campgrounds for backpackers, paddlers, and recreational boaters. There is excellent fishing, historic lighthouses, and shipwrecks, ancient copper mining sites, and plenty of spots to observe wildlife. Isle Royale is accessible only by boat or float plane.
While enjoying a Venturing Crew backpacking trip two of the boys decided to sit quietly on the rocks at Sisskiwit Bay on Isle Royale. Even the roudiest of boys can find a little quiet for introspection while on the Island. It is good to see them deprived of their handheld devices for more than a day.
My advice: take some time, relax and plan a 2 week vacation to spend in the picturesque spots I described above. You won’t regret it! And try to remember:
“Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer.”
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”
I love to travel to different places in this world of ours, full of magnificent buildings and natural beauties, I’ve always have loved to do this.
During my trips I came to see all types of bridges : som very old, others, very long and some of them impressed me by something in particular, something specific to that particular bridge. I will try to say a few words expressing my impressions of each bridge that I really love.
Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel
TheChesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel connects Virginia’s Eastern Shorewith the Virginia mainland at Virginia Beachnear Norfolk. It is a modern engineering wonder, a tourist attraction and a travel convenience. The Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel is a four-lane 20-mile-long vehicular toll crossing that provides direct access from Southeastern Virginia to the Delmarva Peninsula (Delaware plus the Maryland and Virginia Eastern Shore). It is really a unique experience to travel across the Bridge-Tunnel. There is also a scenic overlook and fishing pier which are great places to stop and take in the magnificent views of the Chesapeake Bay.
The Tower Bridge in London
Tower Bridge is a combined bascule and suspension bridge in London, built between 1886 and 1894. It is the most famous bridge in London, and surprisingly, the bridge only needs 90 seconds to lift. This happens about 500 times a year. The image of it is breathtaking and displays a highly unusual building that makes it a well-known landmark of the Great Britain capital. You must agree with me!
Pont Alexandre III — Paris, France
This famous French bridge is considered by many to be one of the most beautiful in Paris, if not the world. One of its prettiest features are the gilded, iron, and stone statues of nymphs, pegasus, lions, and cherubs. But the best part of this bridge is its significant location, close to Champs-Élysées and near the tomb of Napoleon.
Brooklyn Bridge — New York City, New York
One of the most recognizable and iconic bridges in the U.S., the Brooklyn Bridge is more than just a gateway between two boroughs — it’s also a gorgeous piece of architecture. Built in 1883, it became the world’s first steel-wire suspension bridge. Today, the bridge is a major tourist attraction and a crossing for thousands of pedestrians and vehicles each day.
Ponte Vecchio – An Everlasting Symbol of Florence
Open all of the time, along the pedestrian zone south of Piazza della Repubblica towards Palazzo Pitti.
Built very close to the Roman crossing, the Ponte Vecchio, or OldBridge, was the only bridge across the Arno in Florence until 1218. The current bridge was rebuilt after a flood in 1345. During World War II it was the only bridge across the Arno that the fleeing Germans did not destroy. Instead they blocked access by demolishing the medieval buildings on each side. On November 4, 1966, the bridge miraculously withstood the tremendous weight of water and silt when the Arno once again burst its banks.
Benvenuto Cellini, a 16th century goldsmith, is honoured with a bust on the bridge. By night, the wooden shutters of the shops create a look like suitcases and wooden chests, making it a very suggestive route to take for an evening passeggiata, or stroll. Ponte Vecchio is a very romantic spot in Florence, with its great views over the river and of the bridge itself.
I hope you also like the bridges that I tried to present in my article here. Maybe on one of your future trips you’ll decide to visit at least one of them!
Lewis is rich in treasures of many other kinds – historic, religious. ..First light at Callanish. This is one of those places where tourists find themselves mesmerized and overwhelmed by unexplained prehistoric formations of huge pillar- like stones displayed in unusual positions.
The stone circle on the Hebridean island of Lewis may be 5,000 years old, but it would not do to keep it waiting. Besides, coming here at daybreak is, from certain perspectives, positively tardy. Emma Rennie, a local photographer, considers 2am the best time to visit. “It’s beyond mindblowing,” she told me, ahead of my journey. “There’s silence, which the world is so short of nowadays, and millions of stars. I feel small and insignificant, and I love it.”
Callanish – or Calanais in Gaelic – comprises 49 standing stones laid out in a shape that, seen from above, suggests a Celtic cross. Despite this resemblance, the site long predates Christianity and, indeed, Stonehenge.
The world famous Calanais standing stones are older than Stonehenge and much more sculptural and beautiful. Erected 5,000 years ago, they were an important place for ritual activity for at least 2,000 years. The main complex contains around 50 stones in a cross formation, with 13 stones and a small chambered cairn in the inner circle.
This is one of the delights of Callanish, and something you can’t get from the photographs – the look of the stones up close, and the tingling pleasure of the way they feel beneath your palm. Swirls, crevices, bright patches of pink granite … each stone offers a drone’s-eye view of some desert landscape. The oystercatchers and swallows, peeping and piping overhead, have the right idea. Don’t get too close: you could get lost in those patterns and never find your way out again.
What, though, was Callanish for? The idea that this was some sort of druidic temple draws the crowds, especially at the summer solstice. The visitor centre and information panels play it safe with a lot of “perhaps” and “possibly”; the purpose of the stones, they say, remains a mystery. When I visit Callanish expert Margaret Curtis at her home nearby, she offers greater certainty: the site, she believes, was built as a solar and lunar observatory.
“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existence. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery each day.” (Albert Einstein)
Cofucius lived in China a long time ago, (551 bce – 479bce) and was China’s most famous teacher, philosopher, and political theorist, whose ideas have profoundly influenced the civilizations of China and other East Asian countries. The philosophy of Confucius, also known as Confucianism, emphasized personal and governmental morality, correctness of social relationships, justice, kindness, and sincerity.
Confucius is widely considered as one of the most important and influential individuals in human history. His teaching and philosophy greatly impacted people around the world and remain influential today.
His teachings , if understood, and learned, could change the way we see life and therefore they are worth reading and remembering.
Here are just a few quotes containing some of Confucius’ great philosophical ideas about life.
Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.
Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.
To know what you know and what you do not know, that is true knowledge.
When you know a thing, to hold that you know it, and when you do not know a thing, to allow that you do not know it – this is knowledge.
To see what is right and not to do it is want of courage, or of principle.
Wisdom, compassion, and courage are the three universally recognized moral qualities of men.
It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.
One quote that I particularly like:
It is easy to hate and it is difficult to love. This is how the whole scheme of things works. All good things are difficult to achieve; and bad things are very easy to get.
On the world’s art scenes I can see a gentle benefic come back of figurative painting, after the American culture was dominated for decades by abstract art genres..
Today I came across a site that I liked in particular because the author points out this trend that I go along with quite well. She chose a few contemporary artists works of art in order to demonstrate this aspect.
„I’d like to feature some of the best contemporary male artists painting women in classical tradition. After decades of abstract art dominating the American culture, figurative painting sees a gentle come back that is becoming stronger and more popular year after year. While contemporary art is an amalgam of so many subjects and styles, it’s often subjective to the viewer’s personal taste to determine who is the best in painting. Therefore, I don’t aim to say that the following artists deserve more attention than others, but I’d like to highlight the ones who show both technical and creative mastery in the depiction of women, finding their inspiration in the female form.
Pino Daeni (1939-2010) was an Italian artist who painted women in fresh pastel colors that evoked feelings of love, admiration, and family warmth. Women dance, read or take a stroll in a field of flowers or at the beach. Sweet and lighthearted, the figures are painted in colorful, loose strokes, using the sophisticated color schemes that overlay and harmonize with each other like notes in music. Long skirts, comfy white shirts, and summer dresses get lost in the soft edges of the surroundings. To see the artist’s work, visit: http://www.pino-artist.com/
Russian artist, Serge Marshennikov is the representational painter who solely focuses on painting women. His youthful, semi-nude models rest on a couch in swirls of delicate fabric. The elaborate lace and cotton alike, it feels so gentle and real, the viewer feels tempted to reach out and touch it. Like the 19th-century French artist David, Serge plays with complex fabric folds and the luminous skin tones to create stunning contrast in his paintings.
Besides exhibiting a tremendous technical skill in oil painting, the artist possesses true talent composing his images with honest admiration and sensitivity to his models that transcend time and place. Follow the artist here: http://serge-marshennikov.tumblr.com/
American artist, Joshua LaRock is a classical realist who studied with Jacob Collins to nurture his talents. Deeply rooted in classical painting, his portraits and still lifes are carefully planned and executed in classical tradition. Joshua describes his models in soft, slightly loose brushwork that breath with life. The award-winning artist works and teaches in New York. Connect with the artist here: http://joshualarock.com/
Italian artist, Emanuele Dascanio draws and paints in the hyperrealism style with the models occupying huge surfaces. His subjects vary from women to old men, to still life. He often controls the light with a single light source (the Rembrandt lighting) to create dramatic charcoal drawings and paintings. To see the artist’s work, go here: http://www.emanueledascanio.com/en
The first time I encountered Jeremy Mann’s work I was blown away by his loose style of painting that seemed totally real nevertheless. Painting cityscapes and women in thick, bold strokes of ink brayers and brushes, the artist creates a universe of harmonious, often monochromatic color relationships. Views of Manhattan and reposed models alike, his paintings make us contemplate a moment of beautiful silence that doesn’t scream with melancholy.
Gregory Mortenson is a classically trained artist whose recent body of work features Haitian children, who were painted by the artist after the devastating earthquake hit the country. His subdued color palettes show a beautiful restraint. To see the artist’s work: http://www.gregorymortenson.com/
Goyo Dominguez is a Spanish artist who paints women and still life, combining traditional painting techniques with the loose brushwork of the Impressionists. Influenced by Renaissance, his romantic artwork is colorful and pure with a sense of lightness and tranquility. Early in life he studied for priesthood and was encouraged to pursue the artistic career. His upbringing led the artist to create numerous murals and commissions for the church and more. To see his work: http://goyodominguez.com/
American artist, Brad Kunkle paints women on the silver-leafed panels. He employs monochromatic grays and browns to describe his models. Brad often places women against the patterned background or lets the flying leaves revolve around the models like tiny birds. His figures could be the nymphs of magical forests that strike us with primal physical presence. To connect with the artist: http://bradkunkle.com/
Not a very usual time of year to choose for spending a few days at the shore. The weather was gorgeous, though, we decided that we will go. I ma referring here at the Black Sea, one middlesized body of salty water situated in Europe, the south-eastern part.
Why do they call it the Black Sea? The sea was first named by the ancient Greeks who called it „Inhospitable Sea.” The sea got this reputation because it was difficult to navigate, and hostile tribes inhabited its shores. …
The Black Sea is all colors, but black. Emerald green, sapphire blue, aquamarine, silvery and sparkling gold , all due, in turn, to the particular time of the day . It could also be steel like, restless or stern looking in times of stormy weather.
Actually, I meant to show you something myrific about one particular morning when I happened to go out on the balcony with my coffee. I realized something amazing that one can catch maybe a few times in their life, or none at all .
I sincerely wish you had a similar experience, it is breath-taking, literally!
“Every luxury must be paid for, and everything is a luxury, starting with being in this world.” ― Cesare Pavese
“Some people think luxury is the opposite of poverty. It is not. It is the opposite of vulgarity.” ― Coco Chanel
Imagine being inside an exotic train that resembles a posh 5-star hotel and takes you on a trip on some of the most breathtaking destinations. Doesn’t that sound like a fantasy? Well, in this video, you will get to discover some of the world’s best luxury train rides. From ‘The Ghan’ of Australia to the Maharajas’ Express of India, being inside these glamorous trains will make you feel like royalty. Take a look.
Take it slow on these luxurious train rides through some of the world’s most glamorous destinations . Whether you’re exploring the Andes or dashing through an island luxurious train travel consistently proves that fly-by country is much more interesting when seen on the ground. On these luxurious trains people are still expected to dress for dinner and attentive waiters serve five-course meals on bone china .
Venice Simplon-Orient-Express: London to Venice
No other train journey evokes romance and adventure quite like the famous Venice Simplon-Orient-Express, setting of notorious Agatha Christie mystery „Murder on the Orient Express.”The train still rolls by some of Europe’s most captivating scenery through cities that have become legends in themselves: London, Paris, Innsbruck, Verona and Venice.Its Art Deco glamor has persevered through the decades while the train’s elegant suites recall an older, more stylish age.Most guests board the train in London for the one-night journey to Venice. But passengers traveling from Italy might notice a set of unusual crates being delivered personally to the head chef on the Paris platform.They are filled with freshly caught lobsters to be served during a delicious brunch before the train reaches the French port of Calais – only available on the westward route.
Golden Eagle: Moscow to Vladivostok
Hardcore travelers say you haven’t really experienced train travel until you’ve rode the Trans-Siberian Express, with its intimidating itinerary that spans a whopping eight time zones.The Golden Eagle is a luxury version of the Trans-Siberian, featuring en-suite bathrooms, air-con in the summer, full heat in the winter, laundry services, TVs, a resident pianist and an English-speaking doctor.The two-week passage feels more like a cruise than a train ride as it stops for daily excursions along the way.It rides along Lake Baikal, hauled by a Soviet Era steam locomotive, and makes a detour to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia’s capital.To help passengers acclimatize in extravagance, five-star accommodations in Moscow and Vladivostok are provided.From US$15,895 per person (Silver Class)
Blue Train: Pretoria to Cape Town
The Blue Train’s 27-hour, 1,600 kilometer journey crosses South Africa diagonally, stopping at the diamond mines of Kimberley on the way south and at the eccentrically colonial outpost of Matjiesfontein on the way north.Luxurious surroundings apart, the image that lingers afterward is of the friendly and helpful staff.Many of the butlers have worked on the train for years and are on call 24/7 for a drink, a snack or even to iron clothes.Some of the luxury double suites have full size bathtubs – there’s nothing quite like lying in a sea of bubbles, glass of champagne in hand as the savannah rolls by.Past passengers include Nelson Mandela, Quincy Jones, Paul Simon, Mia Farrow, Margaret Thatcher and Kylie Minogue.Celebrating its 70th anniversary in 2016, the Blue Train is now offering special journeys from Pretoria to Hoedspruit, in the Kruger Park area.From $976 per person.
The Ghan: Adelaide to Darwin
The Ghan is a three-night, 2,979-kilometer tour from Darwin to Adelaide that allows travelers to cross Australia while peering into the endless uniformity of the red-earthed antipodean bush.The Platinum service offers more cabin and ensuite space, chauffeured transfers, access to an exclusive dining carriage, breakfast in bed and five-course meals.The menu highlights Australia’s exotic local fare, like saltwater barramundi fish and grilled kangaroo fillet.The Ghan offers scheduled excursions in Katherine and Alice Springs, while special stops provide an opportunity to experience either an outback sunrise in Marla going north, or a nightcap under the Milky Way in Manguri going south.From $2,637 per person
Rovos Rail: Southern and eastern Africa
Rovos Rail is a slower, chiller version of the Blue Train, featuring an extended network of far-flung destinations in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Tanzania.Luxurious and lavish cabin surroundings mean the Rovos ride is not an end in itself, but an essential part of a long journey with several overnights.Because the train never travels more than 60 kilometers per hour (37 m.p.h.) passengers can open windows for fresh air or to photograph the landscapes.In fact, the staff provide sets of goggles so that, should the urge arise to stick heads out of windows, dust in eyes won’t be a problem.Popular journeys fill up quickly: the leisurely ramble from Pretoria to Dar es Salaam, the Namibia safari and golfing trips have sold out well into 2017.The four-day Pretoria to Victoria Falls journey in the Pullman suite costs $1,504 per person
The Rocky Mountaineer: Banff to Vancouver
The Gold Leaf Service of the Rocky Mountaineer offers one of few five-star rail experiences in North America.There are several routes into the Rockies, but it’s the classic Banff to Vancouver ride that still captures the imagination.This was the last, arduous leg of the great rail expansion westwards that united Canada in the late 1880s.Although most tourists prefer the summer season, September to mid-October is possibly the most romantic time to travel, when the leaves turn to a vibrant mix of reds, oranges and yellows and fresh snow accumulates on the mountaintops.To ramp up the romance, couples traveling together can rotate their seats so they face each other during the journey.From $1,309 per person
Belmond Royal Scotsman: Scottish Highlands.
A journey aboard the Belmond Royal Scotsman is a unique way to see the magnificent Scottish countryside in a Downton Abbey atmosphere.Travelers can choose from several round trips from Edinburgh lasting between two and seven days, but the classic voyage is the four-night passage to the Scottish Highlands.It includes visits to distilleries and sightseeing excursions to castles.The UK’s only luxury sleeper train, it has a bar stocked with more than 50 kinds of whisky.Fall is perhaps the best time of year to travel, when the purples of wild heather color the Scottish meadows.From $3,917 per person (two nights)
Maharajas’ Express: Delhi to Mumbai
Often called „the Orient Express of the Orient,” the Maharajas’ Express is a recent entrant to the luxury train market.The decor attempts to emulate the golden days of the Raj when Maharajas traveled with opulence and pomp in ostentatious carriages.Such colonial splendor has been recreated to the full and the week-long journey also immerses travelers in the spirit of the era with gin and tonic sundowners, elephant rides and a chance to chat with erstwhile royal families.It’s an enjoyable three-night ride, but passengers should beware of some hidden extras such as camera and video fees or porter charges.From $3,850 per person
The Transcantabrico Gran Lujo: San Sebastian to Santiago de Compostela
Chugging slowly along Spain’s Atlantic coast for seven days, the Transcantabrico feels more like a five-star hotel on wheels than a full on train experience.In fact a luxury coach catches up with the train at every stop for the day’s excursion, meaning you’ll likely spend as long on the bus as on the train.The rides are short, the sightseeing extensive but what you’ll remember afterward is the exceptional catering with select wines, haute cuisine and excursion meals in top-notch restaurants.Consider this a luxury roll through the best of northern Spain – stops include the Guggenheim museum in Bilbao, the prehistoric cave of Altamira, the Picos de Europa National Park and the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela – and you won’t be disappointed.From $4,859 per person
Seven Stars: Kyushu, Japan
The „Seven Stars in Kyushu” is Japan’s most luxurious train, featuring seven carriages that hold just 30 people in 14 suites.The interiors showcase the best in Japanese craftsmanship, such as walls of rosewood and maple, walnut floors, shoji paper screens as window coverings and sliding glass doors etched with flowers and birds.
Lipsa de comunicare este mai profundă și mai nocivă decât orice altă lipsă. Prețuiți ceea ce aveți deja! Pornesc într-o nouă zi din viață…fie ca aceasta (și toate celelalte)să fie o zi bună Pentru Tine LUME!