Search Results for: California

Free or cheap things to do in Santa Cruz, California
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Free or cheap things to do in Santa Cruz, California

The best part about visiting a beach town is that it is incredibly easy to stay on a budget! For Santa Cruz, California, the only required expenses are your accommodation, a rental car, food, and parking.  Note: The following is a guest post by Dayna Brockbank. There are plenty of free things to do in…

Watersports in Marina del Rey, California
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Watersports in Marina del Rey, California

If you’ve read my blog at all, you know I tend to go for the more off-the-beaten-path, lesser-known destinations when I travel. Even when I go to a relatively popular place, like, for example, Romania, I seek out sights that the tourists don’t visit, like the painted churches of Moldavia. Or, visiting South Korea, I…

Two pearls of the California mission system: Carmel Mission and Mission Dolores
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Two pearls of the California mission system: Carmel Mission and Mission Dolores

We often forget that California history goes further back than the “49-ers,” the gold prospectors who hurried to California once gold was discovered in 1848. Carmel Mission and Mission Delores in Northern California are two pearls of the California mission system that arrived long before the Gold Rush. Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. If…

North Beach neighborhood guide: A local’s favorite things to do
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North Beach neighborhood guide: A local’s favorite things to do

North Beach in a sentence: strange history, charm and some of the best Italian food in San Francisco. The following article is a guest post by Kara Harms of Whimsy Soul. Disclosure: This North Beach neighborhood guide contains affiliate links. If you click on a link and make a purchase, I will receive a small…

MOCA New York City (Museum of Chinese in America)
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MOCA New York City (Museum of Chinese in America)

With so much focus on #BlackLivesMatter, it can be illuminating to look at other ethnic groups in the US. I visited MOCA New York City last year, and it’s high time I published my review. I used to teach an American Studies overview course here in the Netherlands. Every year I made sure to point…

Hurtigruten review: A breathtaking Norway coastal cruise
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Hurtigruten review: A breathtaking Norway coastal cruise

I wanted to take a cruise. My husband steadfastly refused to consider a cruise, but he wanted to see Scandinavia. Our compromise: a Hurtigruten cruise up the coast of Norway. Disclosure: I received a media rate for this cruise: a discount, which makes this a sponsored post. Nevertheless, all opinions are my own and the…

Visiting Hoover Dam with a “Dam” Tour Guide
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Visiting Hoover Dam with a “Dam” Tour Guide

“My name is Arcelia and I’ll be your dam tour guide.” This was our introduction to visiting Hoover Dam. Arcelia milked the joke as much as she could – “this dam wall,” “these dam generators,” and so on – but somehow, it worked, earning a chuckle from the visitors every time. Her cheerful approach impressed…

Musee Mecanique and its Penny Arcade Machines
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Musee Mecanique and its Penny Arcade Machines

Space Invaders! Memories flooded back as I spotted the game. Pac-Man! Centipede! My visit to the Musée Mécanique and its collection of antique and vintage penny arcade machines struck a chord with me. Anyone who grew up in the 70s will remember these games, fondly or otherwise. I only played occasionally, quitting when I lost…

The Rosie the Riveter Museum: Fascinating WWII home front history
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The Rosie the Riveter Museum: Fascinating WWII home front history

When I heard about a museum dedicated to Rosie the Riveter, I had to see it. Who was Rosie the Riveter? The name “Rosie the Riveter,” according to Wikipedia, was first used in a 1942 hit song, praising an assembly line worker helping in the war effort. The popular image of Rosie the Riveter stems…

Trip of a Lifetime: Bloggers Pick their Must-See Destinations
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Trip of a Lifetime: Bloggers Pick their Must-See Destinations

For this collaborative post, I asked fellow travel bloggers about their idea of a trip of a lifetime: If a person who’s never traveled far from home asked you to name the one place they should visit on their one-and-only trip ever, what would you say? I got so many different answers! I’ll start with the…

Watching America Fall Apart on my Renunciation Anniversary
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Watching America Fall Apart on my Renunciation Anniversary

One year ago today, I renounced my US citizenship. Here in the Netherlands, since last week’s US elections, friends and colleagues often ask me “Are you glad you gave up citizenship?” I always say “Yes!” but that’s a lie. I didn’t want give up citizenship then, and I still feel sad that I had to…

The US Election, as seen by Overseas Americans
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The US Election, as seen by Overseas Americans

Watching the American election season from abroad is like slowing down as you pass a car accident on the highway. You don’t really want to see the damage, but you can’t seem to stop yourself from looking. It has nothing to do with you, yet you’re fascinated. The US presidential election I gave up citizenship almost…

On Receiving my Certificate of Loss of Nationality
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On Receiving my Certificate of Loss of Nationality

Almost five months after my renunciation day, I received my Certificate of Loss of Nationality today. It seems ironic that it arrived on Tax Day. People keep asking me how that feels, but I have trouble formulating an answer. Certificate of Loss of Nationality = divorce papers The best analogy I’ve been able to find…

Open Letter to President Obama in response to The State of the Union Address
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Open Letter to President Obama in response to The State of the Union Address

Dear Mr. President, Thank you for your sincere and uplifting State of the Union Address. Your skills in speechmaking are truly impressive. Your speech was addressed to your fellow Americans. I would like to respond to some of your remarks from my point of view: that of an overseas American who has felt the heartbreak…