Sunday, October 25, 2015

Budapeschttttttt

Over Columbus Day weekend, Stacia, one of our school librarians, and I headed to Budapest.

Pronounced bood-uh-peschtttttttttt.

More or less.



This was another new pin on my travel map, country #31!

Many of my friends had been to Budapest previously and had rave reviews!

We spent time wandering the city, checking out the famous thermal baths, eating food that we can't get in Milan, and eating, and eating.

That about sums up our weekend.

Here's the photo evidence.

We're always on the look out for Starbucks!
And this fall cup is amazing! 

This was cup #1 of many.
And they had #PSL





I'll have to go back another time to see it under blue skies.

Looking at the Chain Bridge across the Danube

roof mosaics on the church, just like in Vienna, Bratislava

Parliament in the background

deliciousness in a bag
Remember me talking about turtlenecks? 





Entrance to the Szechenyi bath

again with the gray skies

the water was nice and warm!
and the people watching was fairly entertaining!

the interior pools were okay, but I preferred the outdoor ones

This end of the outdoor pool had a whirlpool in the center.
Be sure to pack your flip flops, towel and swimsuit.





A few tips for fellow travelers:
The front desk girl was very friendly to us (I've read otherwise online.)
We only paid for lockers. You can enter one of these booths to change.
Close both doors and secure it shut with the board from the bench that folds down.
Then put your clothes in a locker. 

We went to a place called Hummus Bar.
#yum

Parliament. Pretty spectacular.



On a cold, rainy afternoon you should definitely check out the pinball museum.

I imagine some people could spend hours here. I think we survived just under an hour.
The noise level is fairly intense.
And most pinball games require little participation from the player, which gets a tad boring.

Okay, I enjoy gelato in Italy.
But this is probably the best gelato I've ever had.
It had great flavor, was super creamy, and came in the most beautiful shape.

Found a little hole in the wall pho place.
Headed to Budapest? Here's some useful links!

We stayed in this AirBnb. The location was great the apartment had plenty of space for two people.

We ate burritos here. Twice. And I would eat there often if I lived in Budapest.

The website for the baths is here.

You can find that amazing gelato here.

Pho? Go here.

Rainy day activity? Try the Pinball Museum.

Local shopping options: Try Magma for jewerly, purses, art ceramics and more by local artisans. Or FolkArt Craftsman's House for authentic Hungarian wares, like felted pillowcases, embroidered shirts and ceramics.

Need a map for Budapest? Try the use-it map here.

Have any other Budapest recommendations to share? Let me know in the comments!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Manila...The Work Part...Sort Of!!!

My trip to Manila a few weeks ago was technically for work.

But I had a whole lot of fun, both in the markets and at the conference I was attending for work.

First, I got to play with Monopoly money the whole week.


Using currency that is in denominations so much larger than what you are used to is so crazy!

On the way to the conference I went to Starbucks every morning.

The Filipino people are so friendly.

The International School of Manila is located in a very nice suburb of the main downtown area.

It's a completely different world.

It's like a California suburb.

There was even a Krispy Kreme in this Manila suburb.


And a Cold Stone Creamery.

It was a week of gluttony.


I did actually go to the conference.

The campus is amazing.

Manila = not a hardship post. (in case anyone tells you otherwise!!)





I played with conductive ink to make a circuit. (So cool!)



And watched this kid try to teach us about Minecraft.



Rather unsuccessful if I do say so myself.

Anyone want to teach me this? Ask your kids! Where's my former student Nick Flint when I need him?

I also got to spend some time with one of the women I admire in education.

selfies with Kim Cofino!

This week was only made better by some pretty delicious food!!

A legit bowl of ramen? I need serious chopstick tutorials. STAT.



Crispy spring rolls. Yes please!



Tips on learning how to use chopsticks? or Minecraft? I'm desperate!

I'd love to hear about your favorite Southeast Asian cities...I'm trip planning!


Friday, October 9, 2015

The Markets of Manila

This past week I was lucky enough to make my first trip to "real" Asia.

I've been as far east as the middle of Turkey before, but in my mind, that hardly counts.

But upon landing in the Philippines, I can officially say I've been to Asia.

This is country #30.

And the 5th new country of the year! So we can check that goal off the list!

We (my boss Stephen and I) flew Milan to Abu Dhabi and then onto Manila.

the Abu Dhabi airport

We're here for work...but more on that another time.

I snagged a window seat out of Abu Dhabi and had a view of Dubai as we flew past. It was super cool! I took a couple of pictures and shot a time lapse, which is too fast, but what can ya do.

still under construction

video

In our first full day in Manila I had booked a tour of the markets of Manila through a local tour company. The guide took us through several different markets, encouraged us to try several different traditional Filipino foods and laughed with us as we got the full on rainy season experience!

the conditions in downtown Manila are not great

our tour guide with sticky rice

another version of sticky rice...made from powder?
real confused by this...

market life

a panoramic of part of the market scene

this guy...
do you want a bird to take home in a tiny basket?

mangustin

the inside of the mangustin...
of the three fruits, this was my favorite

rambutan

the inside of the rambutan...
I've seen this on tv so many times and was super excited to try it.

the final fruit...lansones

inside of the lansones

purple eggs
#superstrange

not real sure how it was prepared, but I tried it

market life

#scenesfrommanila

the electrical wires in downtown manila are out of control!

trout

hopia

#citylife

Stephen's umbrella didn't fare so well in the Manila rainy season

halo halo...
lots of weird gelatin and ice and puffed rice

Have you been to downtown Manila? I wonder how it compares to other southeast Asian countries. We spent the majority of our time in suburban Manila, which was so different from what you see in the pictures above.


Sunday, October 25, 2015

Budapeschttttttt

Over Columbus Day weekend, Stacia, one of our school librarians, and I headed to Budapest.

Pronounced bood-uh-peschtttttttttt.

More or less.



This was another new pin on my travel map, country #31!

Many of my friends had been to Budapest previously and had rave reviews!

We spent time wandering the city, checking out the famous thermal baths, eating food that we can't get in Milan, and eating, and eating.

That about sums up our weekend.

Here's the photo evidence.

We're always on the look out for Starbucks!
And this fall cup is amazing! 

This was cup #1 of many.
And they had #PSL





I'll have to go back another time to see it under blue skies.

Looking at the Chain Bridge across the Danube

roof mosaics on the church, just like in Vienna, Bratislava

Parliament in the background

deliciousness in a bag
Remember me talking about turtlenecks? 





Entrance to the Szechenyi bath

again with the gray skies

the water was nice and warm!
and the people watching was fairly entertaining!

the interior pools were okay, but I preferred the outdoor ones

This end of the outdoor pool had a whirlpool in the center.
Be sure to pack your flip flops, towel and swimsuit.





A few tips for fellow travelers:
The front desk girl was very friendly to us (I've read otherwise online.)
We only paid for lockers. You can enter one of these booths to change.
Close both doors and secure it shut with the board from the bench that folds down.
Then put your clothes in a locker. 

We went to a place called Hummus Bar.
#yum

Parliament. Pretty spectacular.



On a cold, rainy afternoon you should definitely check out the pinball museum.

I imagine some people could spend hours here. I think we survived just under an hour.
The noise level is fairly intense.
And most pinball games require little participation from the player, which gets a tad boring.

Okay, I enjoy gelato in Italy.
But this is probably the best gelato I've ever had.
It had great flavor, was super creamy, and came in the most beautiful shape.

Found a little hole in the wall pho place.
Headed to Budapest? Here's some useful links!

We stayed in this AirBnb. The location was great the apartment had plenty of space for two people.

We ate burritos here. Twice. And I would eat there often if I lived in Budapest.

The website for the baths is here.

You can find that amazing gelato here.

Pho? Go here.

Rainy day activity? Try the Pinball Museum.

Local shopping options: Try Magma for jewerly, purses, art ceramics and more by local artisans. Or FolkArt Craftsman's House for authentic Hungarian wares, like felted pillowcases, embroidered shirts and ceramics.

Need a map for Budapest? Try the use-it map here.

Have any other Budapest recommendations to share? Let me know in the comments!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Manila...The Work Part...Sort Of!!!

My trip to Manila a few weeks ago was technically for work.

But I had a whole lot of fun, both in the markets and at the conference I was attending for work.

First, I got to play with Monopoly money the whole week.


Using currency that is in denominations so much larger than what you are used to is so crazy!

On the way to the conference I went to Starbucks every morning.

The Filipino people are so friendly.

The International School of Manila is located in a very nice suburb of the main downtown area.

It's a completely different world.

It's like a California suburb.

There was even a Krispy Kreme in this Manila suburb.


And a Cold Stone Creamery.

It was a week of gluttony.


I did actually go to the conference.

The campus is amazing.

Manila = not a hardship post. (in case anyone tells you otherwise!!)





I played with conductive ink to make a circuit. (So cool!)



And watched this kid try to teach us about Minecraft.



Rather unsuccessful if I do say so myself.

Anyone want to teach me this? Ask your kids! Where's my former student Nick Flint when I need him?

I also got to spend some time with one of the women I admire in education.

selfies with Kim Cofino!

This week was only made better by some pretty delicious food!!

A legit bowl of ramen? I need serious chopstick tutorials. STAT.



Crispy spring rolls. Yes please!



Tips on learning how to use chopsticks? or Minecraft? I'm desperate!

I'd love to hear about your favorite Southeast Asian cities...I'm trip planning!


Friday, October 9, 2015

The Markets of Manila

This past week I was lucky enough to make my first trip to "real" Asia.

I've been as far east as the middle of Turkey before, but in my mind, that hardly counts.

But upon landing in the Philippines, I can officially say I've been to Asia.

This is country #30.

And the 5th new country of the year! So we can check that goal off the list!

We (my boss Stephen and I) flew Milan to Abu Dhabi and then onto Manila.

the Abu Dhabi airport

We're here for work...but more on that another time.

I snagged a window seat out of Abu Dhabi and had a view of Dubai as we flew past. It was super cool! I took a couple of pictures and shot a time lapse, which is too fast, but what can ya do.

still under construction

video

In our first full day in Manila I had booked a tour of the markets of Manila through a local tour company. The guide took us through several different markets, encouraged us to try several different traditional Filipino foods and laughed with us as we got the full on rainy season experience!

the conditions in downtown Manila are not great

our tour guide with sticky rice

another version of sticky rice...made from powder?
real confused by this...

market life

a panoramic of part of the market scene

this guy...
do you want a bird to take home in a tiny basket?

mangustin

the inside of the mangustin...
of the three fruits, this was my favorite

rambutan

the inside of the rambutan...
I've seen this on tv so many times and was super excited to try it.

the final fruit...lansones

inside of the lansones

purple eggs
#superstrange

not real sure how it was prepared, but I tried it

market life

#scenesfrommanila

the electrical wires in downtown manila are out of control!

trout

hopia

#citylife

Stephen's umbrella didn't fare so well in the Manila rainy season

halo halo...
lots of weird gelatin and ice and puffed rice

Have you been to downtown Manila? I wonder how it compares to other southeast Asian countries. We spent the majority of our time in suburban Manila, which was so different from what you see in the pictures above.