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Travel Cultures Language

There’s Something
About Santa Fe

by Joyce McGreevy on February 19, 2018

A trompe l'oeil mural at Big Adventure Comics shows why Santa Fe, New Mexico inspires wanderlust. (Image © Joyce McGreevy)

Santa Fe strips away its own layers to reveal greater surprises. (Big Adventure Comics, Montezuma Ave.)
© Joyce McGreevy

When Wanderlust Leads Southwest

There’s something about New Mexico. Its magnetism can activate wanderlust from thousands of miles away. Like the time a friend and I stood speechless in London’s Tate Modern, gaping at a painting by Georgia O’Keeffe.

“Black Cross with Stars and Blue” is one of O’Keeffe’s earliest depictions of the land that became her obsession.

Feeling Transported

The image transported me to a place where stars are more defined, shadows blacker, and blues more astonishing than anywhere else on earth.

The Egg and “Ei”

by Joyce McGreevy on October 24, 2017

When four teenagers and a writer, Joyce McGreevy, meet in the Volksgarten, Vienna, Austria, they share the fun of speaking two languages. Image © Joyce McGreevy

Finding our voices in Vienna: Catrina, Cedric, the author, Nicky, and Adah. (Oh, and “Albert.”)
© Joyce McGreevy

What Four Viennese Teens Taught Me
About Speaking Two Languages

I was sitting on a park bench in Vienna when they approached me, speaking two languages.

What’s more international than the Volksgarten? An Austrian park in formal French style around a replica Greek temple, it attracts visitors from around the world.

The replica Temple of Theseus at the Volksgarten, Vienna gives a group of visitors an opportunity for speaking in two languages. (Public domain image by Norman Davies)

The Volksgarten (“people’s garden”) blooms with roses and buzzes with languages. 
Norman Davies (public domain)

I’d been thinking about language, about the surprising fact that I’d found it easier to speak Hungarian than German.

Budapest, Fast and Slow

by Joyce McGreevy on October 2, 2017

Chariot drivers and horses race at Heroes Square, reflecting the best of Budapest "fast and slow." Image © Joyce McGreevy

You can race through Budapest at a gallop, but you’ll notice more at a gentle pace.
© Joyce McGreevy

Hungarian Travel Tips in Two Tempos

I’m lingering at a bisztro in Budapest’s Jewish Quarter, savoring every bite of cholent.  It’s an Ashkenazi slow-and-low cooked casserole.  Guests keep arriving in waves. So, when the waiter approaches, I assume it’s to drop the bill and hasten me on my way.

Instead, he recommends flodni, a 20-ingredient stuffed wonder he airily summarizes as a “light pastry.” Or perhaps another glass of rozé?

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