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Everything posted by slidergirl

  1. Ah ha! That's why the females at my hotel have to wear black hose with their uniform dresses. I'm lucky: since I'm "management", I don't have to wear a uniform. Summertime we can go bare leg if we wear a dress or skirt. But, in Winter, we must wear hose. I wear pants, so I can avoid the whole mess. For the OP: I'd go with nude. Puts the emphasis on the dress instead of trying to keep the color going down just the legs.
  2. My favorite steward is invisible. The steward does the cleaning and re-provisioning of my cabin as needed. I'm very low-maintenance, so I don't give a list of "please do" for the steward. I don't need to engage with them, learn their family history, if they like chocolate bars or if they'd like a photo of me to put on their bunk wall. I'll smile and say "hello" if I pass in the hallway, but, that's about it. I don't make a personal connection with my housekeeper in a hotel if I'm there for a week, I don't feel the need to make a personal connection with my room steward on a cruise.
  3. YES on the daily special. I love their artichokes, too (they only have them in season), If I go there on a Thursday, I get gnocchi in gorgonzola sauce. I'm a sucker for gnocchi anywhere (I also get it as my appetizer at another favorite restaurant). I was there once when wild strawberries were in season and there was a special someone told me to ask about - that pasta dish was unique and yummy. I want to go there on a night when they have the anchovies on the menu - it sounds good, too. Everything sounds good (well, except for the trippa). One of my quirks Italy is to always have a contorni of greens or beans. Armando's cicoria (chicory - I can only find it on menus in Italy) is simple but so good. Save room for one of the sister's desserts - the hazelnut torte is yummy.
  4. As long as you go into it knowing that "the next available flight" may be the next day...
  5. My hotel and the last hotel I worked at have plug-in CO2 detectors and little plug-in flashlights. But, I never thought of traveling with a CO2 detector. Thank you for that little tidbit!!
  6. I'm sorry we hijacked the thread. but I'd love to see the faces of those who do the excursions and end up at the "authentic" restaurant and have exactly 42 minutes to eat before heading to the next site to be seen for 10 minutes... 😉 cruisemom - You'll never see me even get near quinto quarto in Italy!!! And no menudo in Mexico, either... Heading out on my own and finding my own little slice of local life in <name the overcrowded port> is what I'll always do!!
  7. that is heartbreaking. I have to remember to FB an old friend - her family owns the Yetna Station Roadhouse. It's out in the wilderness (no roads, access via boat, floatplane or dogsled). West of Willow, south of Talkeenta, on the Susitna River. From what I can visualize from reading, they may be very near one of the wildfires.
  8. I hope enough firefighters can be rounded up to fight the fire. A longtime friend of mine is in Fire Management for the USFS. She is supposed to be retired, but she gets called every summer since retirement to go to a site to help. She's in Idaho right now. There are so many fires around the West and Alaska again that resources are stretched thin. I hope the people affected in Alaska end up on the "good" side of the fires and do not lose property.
  9. Never had rat. But, I caught and killed and BBQ'd rattlesnake at Girl Scout camp one year. Did NOT taste like chicken.
  10. I'm also thinking about those ports where people say there isn't anything to do in the port or have to take excursions that take an hour or so each way. There is always a cool little restaurant to be found. I mean, the local folks do like to go out for a good meal once in awhile, right?? 😉 P.S. avoid Cinque Terre - there's no good place to eat there... (joking, but keeping my places secret)
  11. I agree with taking the train to Milan. If you don't mind spending money, a "nice" place to stay is the Excelsior Gallia. It is part of the "Starriott" portfolio (it was a Starwood Luxury Collection property). Totally redone a few years ago. It's right by the Milano Centrale station.
  12. You can't swing a dead cat in Rome without hitting a young seminarian 🤣 At least you got your choice of a couple of tourist restaurants around Trevi - I hear of people being herded into just one restaurant where they get an "authentic" lunch of spaghetti and chianti...if it's Thursday, it had better be gnocchi...
  13. I have a little problem with being crammed in a small, long metal tube for any long period of time. Unless I get to fly Business and have my own little cocoon to concentrate in and not get claustrophobic, I need to stop once, maybe twice (depending on where I'm going). If I'm traveling cattle class, I'll take a flight from my home base to either ATL or JFK. From there, if I can get a nonstop to my destination, fine. Otherwise, I'll take a connection and relax outside of that tube for a few hours. It's just me. I don't have price dictate what I do. Sometimes, I like to find some "esoteric" routing to get where I'm going, just to see an airport I haven't been to before.
  14. wow. that would be a LONG day driving with a very SHORT time in Petra. Maybe jog down the slot canyon, see The Treasury, and jog back up the canyon. I sure wouldn't even dream of it. When I went to Petra, we spent one day driving from Amman, stopping at some crusader castles, and spending the night at the Marriott. Then, had the entire day on our own inside Petra. Next day, driving back North, we stopped and played in Wadi Rum, and ended back at the Dead Sea, staying the night at the Marriott there. I couldn't imagine doing it any shorter. And, you've got those pesky border crossings, where you may get through quickly or you may not, depending on the mood of the border guards that day, and you have to have a different driver and guide for the Jordanian side. From Ashdod, take a trip down to Masada and maybe a stop at Ein Gedi spa to take a dip in the Dead Sea. Go to Jerusalem, walk all the walkways, through the Christian Quarter, the Jewish Quarter. Pick up some pistachios to nibble on, a nice sandwich, some hummus. Or, go North to Cesarea, an ancient Roman port on the Med. Some really cool ruins to be had there. Drive up into the Carmel Mountains above Haifa and visit the Carmelite Monestary (Beautiful view), and go to the Druze village on the way back. So much to do just within Israel for a day that won't have you running ragged.
  15. I spent 5 nights at the Cavalieri. Free. Perk of winning a Hilton employee contest when I worked at a Waldorf-Astoria. It is a really nice place to sit out on the patio at night, sipping a nice glass of red, nibbling on the free nuts and stuff they bring. Really nice to watch lightning hit on the rooftops around Rome. And, the PILLOW MENU!!! I mean, I've never seen a menu with about 10 different types of pillows. I had a comfortable garden-view room (as am employee, we have to take what we get, but it was still an excellent room). An excellent breakfast buffet (although an American tourist family grossed be out with all the food they stuffed on their plates - like it was their Last Meal). The big minus is how far it is from everything. The hotel shuttle works if it isn't a busy time to get down to Piazza Barberini and walk around from there. I did a few taxis just to get where I wanted to go a little faster. Definitely better than the Westin (where I got the employee discount of $89/night when I left W=A to St. Regis). But, the Westin is walkable to everywhere. I've only heard some chatter on some Hilton sites about the Hilton Garden Inn that is in Rome (NOT the one at the airport). It's out on the other side of Borghese Park. Definitely not walkable to Centro Storico from there. People seem to think it is an OK place if you want to redeem some points for a quick stay.
  16. I'll get down in the dirt with you!!! But, if we find mosaic or "gingerbread" in the ruins, you have to let me get up close and take a bunch of pictures... I wonder who saw or remembers this one on a ceiling in the Museums. I got a chuckle out of it - the cherub looks looks like he's going to pull someone's tooth!!! Call me weird...
  17. Four questions for you: did you or the Vatican guide decide what were the most important things to see? Were you asked about your preferences for the Museums (Etruscan, Matisse, tapestries, the Map Room, the Raphael Rooms, sculptures)? The restaurant: how did you know it was authentic? what was on the menu (vegetarian/gluten-free available?)? I don't eat a guide-recommended restaurant, so I want to know.
  18. Depending on the port, sometimes the long meal IS the "sight." I'd rather have a leisurely lunch at a nice restaurant than fighting the hordes at some spots...
  19. I know you - you are an "outlier" - you want every second you have at the places you are - you dive headlong into the digs all day long, not just a drive-by and on to the next one!! 😊
  20. Besides those well-known, high-end stores on Via Condotti, you will find a few little gems. Walk a block or two on either side of that street and I've found some nice, reasonably prices jewelry stores. I'm a sucker for fun office/kitchen stuff, and there was at least one around the area that I bought some pens at. I've shopped at that Zara store on Via del Corso - at the time, I had no Zara around where I live, so I'd hit that store and the one in Paris when I was in the area. I think the Benneton store moved a few blocks "in" from VdC. I found a Napajuri and a Ferrari store in the area on some side streets just off of VdC. One trip, bought a nice scarf and a fleece sweater at Napajuri and bought a stylin' baseball hat and some luggage tags at the Ferrari store. Don't forget the Riscante (sorry about spelling) little mall between Trevi and the Pantheon. There are some cute stores in there. If you are starting your cruise in Rome or if you are missing some of your cosmetics, the Riscante store has a large selections and there is also a couple of Sephora stores in the area (and one in Termini). Yes, I shop...
  21. If, as the OP says they are comfortable with DIY and have travelled elsewhere DIY, not sure why they would be "well advised" to join a private tour group. I guess I am an odd duck. I "did" Rome the first time, and subsequent times, on my own. I was solo, and I did not feel the need to be on a private tour. I had no idea if I'd ever be back, but I didn't feel the need to stuff as many things into the day as possible. I don't like those tours, especially in Rome. I am being dictated on on how much time I can spend at any site. If I find something fascinating and want to explore more, I can't do it because the tour has to get back on those damn mini-vans and rush to the next spot, sometimes coming dangerously close to running someone down (personal experience)... To each their own.
  22. But, I wonder if we are the norm. I hear cruisers talking about making sure they get back to the ship to have lunch and dinner because they've paid for those meals already. Or, they are taking a ship or private excursion where the meal is provided. Not the same as eating local.
  23. And, apparently, Costa Rica. Authorities are finding bottles of booze mixed with methanol...
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