Symbols of Unity

Another beautiful part of 2016: Seeing clear symbols of unity and empathy. Western public dialogue in 2016 around identity politics and borders felt overwhelmingly inhumane and rather disturbing. Hence my relief to see and feel a different attitude in Berlin, a city formerly divided A major highlight visiting the city centered on a trip to the former Berlin Wall along Mühlenstraße, known as the East Side Gallery, a monument … Continue reading Symbols of Unity

Exploring on Bike

There’s not much to elaborate on with this highlight – I love biking in Minneapolis, both for pleasure and transportation, so exploring the neighborhoods of Berlin and Amsterdam on a bicycle in August was a thrill. Although both cities have wonderful things to offer, I drastically preferred Berlin while on two wheels. Shocking, I know. Everyone thinks of Amsterdam (or maybe Copenhagen) as being a great … Continue reading Exploring on Bike

Goodbye 2016

Now that the sun has begun to set on the year, it’s a natural opportunity to remember all the wonderful things that came out of it. The last twelve months took me away from home for forty nights, visiting four countries as well as eight U.S. states. I was very fortunate to have more travel opportunities than 2015, that also were nicely spread throughout the … Continue reading Goodbye 2016

Driving Castilla-La Mancha

A beautiful experience from my recent trip to Spain was the drive through Castilla-La Mancha on the way from Cuenca to Valencia. This trip marked my first time driving abroad and although I found the cities nightmarish to navigate, the empty mountain roads were an absolute pleasure to drive! After two great nights and far too much wine in old Cuenca, it was time to head … Continue reading Driving Castilla-La Mancha

Palacio Real de Madrid

Rain or shine, the Royal Palace is a must-see and an easy addition to walk around central Madrid, situated next to the beautiful Cathedral de la Almudena and minutes from Plaza Mayor (which holds a Christmas Market) and Mercado de San Miguel  (perfect stop for a snack and the first place I enjoyed migas). We were lucky enough to find an adorable apartment a short walk from several main … Continue reading Palacio Real de Madrid