Sunday, April 19, 2009

My Bucket List (Not yet formal)

Well--I haven't actually developed a formal Bucket List, but I could get a good start on one if I needed to turn one in for a class. It would include such places as Angkor Wat, Viet Nam, Australia, New Zealand, Prague and the Czech Republic, Montenegro, Dubrovnik, Greece, the Central American countries, Easter Island (and others in the south Pacific), a return to Rome and Italy to see Pompeii (and to Florence again to see The David one more time), and a number of African countries--Kenya, Namibia, Morocco, Egypt and others, India, the Maldives, Malta, and Mauritius, and all of the Caribbean islands, including Cuba, and the Nazca Lines. Not that I will ever have the money or the time to go to all of these places. But I started to think about a formal Bucket List when I discovered this trip to Machu Picchu and the Galapagos Islands (, both of which would be ranked rather high on my list--Machu Picchu in the top five, most likely. This is an 18-day adventure in a small group offered through Overseas Adventure Travel ( and matches almost exactly a trip I once mentioned to a friend--the only missing point of travel from my original day dream is Easter Island. This looks like a neat adventure. Now I just need to figure out how to fund it. Alas--there's always a catch.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Centro--The Old City

We spent some time in the old part of the city, known as Centro. We took the Sabalo-Centro bus from our location in the northwestern part of the city through the Golden Zone into the Centro district. Here you will find an old-fashioned market place and a downtown area like the old downtown of St. Paul. We walked past the landmark cathedral (didn't go in) during our search for Plaza Machado, which we found about five blocks from the cathedral. A book fair was in progress, and several artists were displaying what I would call political cartoons--at least they were drawings with captions such as we would see on the editorial pages of American newspapers. During our walk to Plaza Machado, we also found the Archaeological Museum. Once again, we decided to keep walking, preferring to explore that part of the city. We found a nice family-style restaurant in Centro called Panama. Kind of a cafeteria atmosphere, but wait staff did serve us. Particularly distracting was the dessert tray, which somehow managed to wheel by our table a half dozen times during our meal. While we didn't make this a major portion of our trip, I have mentally earmarked it as an area to further explore. I think it could provide some interesting revelations. If you ever go, you may want to check this site,, for ideas about what to do and see.