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Christopher’s Christmas Carol (Part III)

Let’s back up a bit—beep, beep, beep—to the day my cast came off, just three days before my flight home. See, the airline had some silly discriminatory rule about casts in the cabin. It would have to come off if I was going to surprise my parents for Christmas. So off it came. The same […]

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Christopher’s Christmas Carol (Part II)

I had moved to Germany just five months before my redhaired, demon colleague caused me to break my ankle. When I left America, I bore the mane of a rock star—think Whitesnake or David Lee Roth…or Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, post-suicide blonde wig. I was pretty, and I’m not going to apologize. So upon […]

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Christopher’s Christmas Carol (Part I)

“I’ll race ya to the U-Bahn!” a petite, carrot-top English teacher shouted and darted out of the teachers’ room at our language institute. It was an icy late-October in Munich, so I threw my scarf around my shoulders and pursued. She didn’t have a chance; after all, I had been on the track team for […]

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A Thanksgiving Message

I began, like quite a lot of you, as the winner of a race, a tiny adventurer headed for that egg in the uteral sky. I plopped out near Frankfurt, Germany (probably not so much like most of you). It didn’t take me long to realize the people around me were spitting a language my […]

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And the Winner is…

The ultimate number one worstest, most awfullest guided tour I’ve ever had…. Gentlemen, the envelope . . . please. This year’s award for Christopher’s worstest awfullest guided tour goes to the I’m-too-sexy-for-these-old-tourists tour of Jerusalem! Polite applause, a few boos, speaker feedback. Jerusalem, ladies and gentlemen, is a city full of holy traffic and holier […]

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The Museum of Competing Tour Guides

Number Two on my “Top Three awfullest Guided Tours” list is the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities, better known as The Egyptian Museum in Cairo—but I like to refer to it as the Museum of Competing Tour Guides. You know the phenomenon: one person starts shouting more loudly to be heard over another person who’s shouting […]

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The Glorious Guided Tour

The concept of the guided tour is simple—tell a throng of tourists the same thing at the same time and make more money. You’ve seen them: the groups of teenagers halfheartedly following a fusty old fart with a red umbrella, a gaggle of Japanese geriatrics huddling around a woman with a microphone . . . […]

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Don’t Pull the Finger at the Great Pyramids

Last year, a few months before I visited the Holy Land with my parents, I was on the phone to my mother discussing our plans for the trip. “We’re going to Alexandria and Jerusalem, and, let’s see,” she said. “I think Gaza is on the trip.” “Gaza?” I laughed. “I don’t think Gaza will be […]

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My Titicaca Troubles

Do you remember the story about Horst on Koh Samui? The one about great Thai food poisoning? Didn’t we have fun? In Peru it was my turn. Grab a Mate de Coca tea, pull up a floating reed island and join me as I revisit Lake Titicaca on the border between Peru and Bolivia. You’ll […]

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A Waiter Knows Best

(Important! If this post is cut off at the bottom, please reload the page. This usually solves the problem.) __________________________ Having worked in the restaurant business for twelve years back when I had longer hair and all the Eurythmics albums, I’ve had the pleasure of witnessing the beauty and wonder of humanity at its hungriest. […]

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