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Balabanova All Over

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[Brussels, Belgium, Dec 19, 2019] Armed with Rick Steves’ Belgium guidebook, I left my hotel shortly after 8 am. It was still dark – sunrise wasn’t until 8:43 am. I stopped for a coffee at the cafe right next to my hotel and headed for the European Parliament on the east side of the city, about 25 minutes away from the city center by bus. The European Union as you know it… Read More

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[Park City, UT, Oct 5, 2019] We woke up pretty early on Saturday morning. The bright sunny day almost had us fooled, but we checked the weather and saw that it was only 29F / -2C! That was way too cold, so we stayed in bed until after 10 am! We wanted to do a little hike to get a taste of the fall colors. The list of top 6 day hikes… Read More

[Portland, OR, Jul 6, 2019] On the last day of my trip, I finally had a chance to hang out in Portland proper. First order of the day was a visit to an ex-coworker of mine who moved here in 2015. Her house is perched up on a hill next to Pittock mansion, so after catching up with her, I headed there. The Pittock Mansion was built in 1914 by the Pittock… Read More

[Manzanita / Cannon Beach, OR, Jul 5, 2019] Trying to figure out what to do with a couple of free days in the Portland area was not hard at all. I’ve been to Portland a couple of times before, so this time I was expanding to good day trips outside of town. The Columbia River Gorge is an excellent such trip, but I had done that in the Fall of 2013. One… Read More

[Bend, OR, July 2, 2019] I couldn’t resist not planning something around the long weekend for July 4th. I picked Crater Lake National Park in Central Oregon because it is fairly easy to get to from LA and, due to its remote location, would not be too crowded on a holiday weekend. I figured I’d pop over to Portland to visit some friends while I am at it and voila – a… Read More