Las Vegas on the Cheap

    The first time I went to Las Vegas was in 1966. Flying from Los Angeles to New York, I broke the trip in Las Vegas for a long evening. Dazzled by the glitter of the place, even then, I had a fine time drinking, wandering around, and losing a little money before catching […]

Cruising the High Seas, Yes Please!

The worldwide shipping cruise market is going from strength to strength. Passenger numbers are increasing by more than 5% annually, and ever-bigger new cruise ships are being built. The largest cruise ship in operation carries 6,000 passengers. Americans provide more than 70% of worldwide cruise passengers, who now total over 15 million annually. Cruises are […]

The Silver Route across the Sierra Madre

Pilar Pedersen (59) loves horses and loves Mexico. A resident of Alpine, Texas, she works as a court interpreter and is a partner in a nearby ranch. She combines her two loves by riding the historic Silver Route across Chihuahua’s Sierra Madre. This 240-mile route leads from the mining town of Batopilas, at the bottom […]

Crossing to Boquillas, Coahuila, Mexico

In the days before 9/11, Big Bend residents and visitors alike used to enjoy the ease of entering Mexico without passports or customs formalities. This was possible at three places, all in or near the Big Bend National Park (Boquillas, Santa Elena and Lajitas). I wrote a book about this in 2000, “Mexico: Unofficial Border […]

Kazakhstan 2004, Peace Corps

< I applied to Peace Corps in 2003 and, after telephone interviews and medical tests over three months, was accepted. I was offered a posting to Kazakhstan, where the first-ever Peace Corps group with business experience was due to arrive in 2004. I accepted and, after a two-day orientation in Washington, DC, our group of […]

Scotland Tour 2009

September 2009 12 days, 20 persons This was my third, and most successful, trip. First day, the only day with rain, we visit Traquair House, built in the 15th century. This historic place has its own brewery,and a maze in the garden.                                         […]

Big Bend, Texas Step-On Guide

BIG BEND & DAVIS MOUNTAINS   Step-On Guide   This is Jim Glendinning in Alpine, Texas. I have lived in this wonderful place for 18 years, engaged in tourism and writing. I have written the following books about the area: From Big Bend to Carlsbad (1995); Unofficial Border Crossings (2000); Adventures in the Big Bend […]

Revisiting Saigon

Bus No. 125 was still running from Saigon’s airport to downtown when I arrived recently off a 90-minute Air Asia flight from Bangkok ($84). The airport had been spruced up since I last visited in 2007, and the severe-looking immigration officers in high-peaked Soviet-style military caps had been replaced by more pleasant-looking female officers. Before […]

Upcountry Vietnam

  At 9 AM on a May morning, I boarded an “Open-Tour” bus in the Pham Ngu Lao backpacker area of downtown Saigon. From Saigon´s humid heat I was headed for the cool mountain air of Dalat, elevation 4,837 feet, in the Central Highlands. The orange-colored, double-decker bus which I entered was a “sleeper bus”, […]

Cooking Up a Storm in Chiang Mai

The bustling university town and tourist center in northern Thailand, Chiang Mai (population 160,000), formerly capital of the northern Thai kingdom, receives 5 million visitors annually. In addition to offering cultural and tourist attractions in-town, it is a jumping off point for local excursions: trekking to see the nearby hill tribes, trips on elephant back, […]