"Addicted to Travel - need more time and money!" kathymof's Profile
Summer 2008 took me to Machu Picchu and the Galapagos. I had a wonderful time. 2009 will be a few weeks in France and am having as much fun planning that trip as I did my travels in summer of 2007 which took me to Lucca, Florence, Venice and Veneto countryside. I rented apartments in each location and just loved getting to know the areas which is easier to do when you spend a whole week. I will be doing the same in France.
I enjoyed each place but frankly, Lucca will always have a special place in my heart. The walls are intact and provide the most wonderful place to walk and ride bikes. The views of the old town constantly change as you circumnavigate the walls. There is a nice little cafe on the wall where we stopped for coffee and other goodies.
For many years I traveled around the US. Many of my travels were road trips associated with going to archaeology or anthropology conferences. I worked as an archaeologist for about 17 years - mostly in the Southwest US and California. I had the opportunity to spend three summers at the magnificent Mesa Verde National Park in southwest Colorado. A mid-life crisis of sorts occurred in my late 30s and I went back to school. That led me to a faculty position at California State University Fresno where I have taught computer information systems for 20 years. For the first time in my life I had the unbeatable combination of both disposable income and big blocks of time on my hands (you know - the best three reasons to teach are June, July and August) and my addiction to travel began. And two things I love to photograph when I am traveling are cats and flowers - this should explain some of the photos on this page.
My first trip to Europe was in 1997 and happened quite by accident. My friend Gayle was retiring from the University and decided to give herself a retirement present - a river cruise from Amsterdam to Vienna with extra time both in Amsterdam and Vienna. She asked if I wanted to go with her because, of all things, she said I was the only friend she had who would go to every beer and wine garden between Amsterdam and Vienna. We went on the Great Rivers of Europe tour with Grand Circle Travel. I was hooked - my tour guide could see it in my eyes and told me I would be back again and again. And that is exactly what has happened. I have been back every year since. BTW - Gayle and I got separated in a small town we were in and I decided the best place to find her was in a beer garden - which is exactly where she was!
Note to self: hey, get around to updating this sometime!!!
In summer of 2007 I plan to spend a week each in Lucca, Florence, Venice and Castelfranco Veneto. I realize that you have proobably not heard of Castelfranco Veneto but it is between Vicenza and Treviso and happens to be at the junction of a couple main train lines. This makes it a perfect base for exploring the Veneto. It is a beautiful, small, walled city. I will stay in self-catering at each location.
There are so many places I want to visit - I love the countryside but also have a great time in cities. The wonderful travel tips here at VT make me realize how few places I have really been to. I hate jumping from one place to the next and prefer to spend several days to a week in a location before moving on. By doing this, I have met many people and seen places I would never have known about if I had moved around a lot more.
I have discovered self-catering and bed and breakfasts and those are my preferences for places to stay. The farmers markets and local grocers are so beautiful and unique - it is fun to buy fresh produce and go back to a house or apartment and fix a good meal complete with local beer or wine.
Here are two composites of kitties I have encountered while traveling. There are five cats in the upper center photo. They were happily sunning themselves and didn't have a care in the world.
The individual photo with the dog gloos with "Kat Palace" written on them is from Taormina Sicily - the Kat Palace was at the Excelsior Palace Hotel. The kitchen staff would give the stray cats spaghetti to eat. If you look closely at the white arrow you will see a pair of eyes that belong to a black cat that is sitting on top of the dog gloo.
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