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Resource Directory for Pennsylvania
A welcome breeze cools the air as The First Lady, a sightseeing boat operated by the Chicago Architectural Foundation, cruises down the main branch of the Chicago River.
The little girl behind me giggles, a deep, throaty “tee-hee-hee.” The woman next to me catches my eye, and we start laughing too. “Heather, sshh,” says the girl’s mother.
I’m standing on the observation deck atop Sandia Mountain, surrounded by sky that, in days gone by, I’d have said was the color of turquoise. Thus I’d have paid homage to the Native American culture of Albuquerque, some 5,000 feet below me.
“Music is in more than the air; it’s in the town’s DNA,” says my friend when I tell her I’m headed for Macon, Georgia. I soon find that she’s right.
I think I’m at a bazaar in India, a market in Mexico, a village in Africa. People in bright traditional garb are weaving baskets, beading necklaces, stitching scarves.
I was looking for cows when I saw my first barn quilt.
I find a patch of green and begin to unpack our picnic basket.
Alabama is not a place where I normally expect to find miracles. Bushes may burn, but angels don’t appear from the flames. Flowers are abundant, but they don’t rain from the sky.
Two rows of young men are standing before me, poised at crisp attention and perspiring heavily.
Some people prepare for trips by researching facts and reserving accommodations. I prepare for them by watching movies. I hope that, in some mystical way, the film will help me better understand the culture of the place I’m about to visit.
One minute I'm outside the American Visionary Art Museum, gazing at a 55-foot-tall whirligig. It spins, it whirls, it catches light and splatters it onto a nearby wall covered with fragments of mirror and tile.
“Russia is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma,” said Winston Churchill in a 1939 radio broadcast.
I’m standing atop an expanse of ice that’s as thick as the Eiffel Tower is tall.
Historic buildings are a given in Savannah. After all, it’s the oldest city in Georgia. It was the Colonial capital when the area was ruled by Britain, and it was the first capital when the colony became a state.
I’m standing on a mesa 370 feet above the New Mexican desert. The sky is turquoise blue, the winds are blowing, and nearby a few people are making pottery while others are preparing food on outdoor ovens.
I pass on wearing a bindi (red dot) on my forehead, because in many parts of India it has a religious significance, but I do want to don a sari.
It’s one thing to envision yourself as a fictional person who represents a group of anonymous folks, like a soldier or farmer. It’s another to imagine the thoughts of a real man or woman whose story has been well documented.
So tangy with spices and sweet with molasses that they’ve become a traditional holiday treat, so fragile that they’re often called “glass cookies” because they’ll shatter if dropped, Moravian cookies hold a special place in the hearts and stomachs of millions of folks.
I can’t say we weren’t warned. When we told our Norwegian friends we were going to Bergen, they looked at each other and smiled as if wondering whether they should let us in on Bergen’s secret.
Aha! There it is, the Eiffel Tower. Around the corner, the Arc de Triomphe. And right nearby, a row of quaint shops on a cobblestoned street. Voilà, this is Paris, n’est-ce pas?
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