A few years ago I was addicted to the history channel. They used to show this breath-taking shoes of places all over the world–old, historic places that were so beautiful and interesting. One of those places was Petra, in Jordan. This lovely place is carved out of rocks, surrounded by mountains and filled with gorges and secret passage ways! Maybe its the writer in me but how has no one thought of writing a secret agent book that’s set in Petra?
But I digress.
Petra is a Nabataean city to the south of Jordan founded around the 6th Century BC. It was an important center for trade and commerce until a major earthquake destroyed most of the city and crippled the water system around AD 663. It was abandoned after Saladin’s conquest in 1189.
Today, Petra is a UNESCO Heritage site and one of the NEW seven wonders of the world!
According to wikitravel:
Entry Ticket to Petra costs 90 JD (=127 USD) for those who are Day-Visitors to Jordan (i.e. those tourists staying in Israel or Egypt who will spend the day in Petra and return without spending the night in Jordan). Tourists (overnight and cruise visitors) pay 50 JD (=70 USD) for 1 day’s access to Petra, 55 JD for 2 days or 60 JD for 3 days. Students have to pay the full price, unless they have a valid Jordanian University ID; then the entry fee is 1 JD.
Photo from Arabian Business
Photo from PR Log
Photo from Famous Wonders
Photo from National Geographic
Well my traveling, eating beauties, another year has come and gone and I wish to take the time to wish you all a happy holiday season. If you are traveling be safe and remember not to drink and drive. Just because you aren’t home doesn’t mean this rule does not apply to you. It still does because this is one instant it is better to be safe than sorry I always say.
If you are in your home land, the same advice applies to you. Have fun with your family this season, hug them extra hard and tell them you love them a little louder than you would normally. Remember, take nothing for granted and love will sooth you every time. Again, from my home to yours, love, laughter and blessings and I look forward to see you all in the new year!
So, I am trying to write a short story for Harlequin’s Digital First Erotic Vacation Line and I am researching different countries to see where I could have my heroine visit. I googled Exotic Vacation Location and this website showed up that listed the top ten exotic vacations we can all afford. Thailand was on that list I thought about it.
Thailand isn’t the first place I would think of being beautiful. Maybe its because of the stuff you read in the news or see on television but I never saw it as a vacation location. Then I started looking at the pictures and all I can see are pristine beaches, beautiful green waters, ancient temples with statutes – it was the most spectacular views and floating markets. This is such a beautiful place – such wonderful intricacies that is breath-taking. Well sure, there are drawbacks but are they so much that I would never visit this lovely place? I think not!
Photo from The Second Globe
Photo from Travel The World
Photo from Travel to World
Photo from 4photo
A little over a month ago, after hearing of my intent on becoming a foodie, my friend Jo, Jo-napped me and took me to this wonderful restaurant called SPRING ROLLS here in Toronto. It’s located in the AMC building right on the intersection of Yonge and Dundas and can be accessed from the Dundas station. At first I thought it was another one of those small, Chinese restaurants in the middle of nowhere. I mean if you go through China Town here or the Korean neighbourhood here in Toronto, you can crash into some very spectacular eats. Some of these places doesn’t look like anything much from the outside but once you sit down to the food, you wonder how in the world you missed this place before. But then I think and these small mom and pop places survive because their food is so good so the regulars keep going back! Anyway, I digress.
Beef in Mushroom Sauce – Omnom!
SPRING ROLLS is cutting edge – how? Well when you go in, you are seated and someone come and hands you an iPad. No, you can’t take it home – I asked lol. What this tablet is for, is ordering. After they show you how to use it (it’s not hard really) they leave you to it and you pick all the food you want for that moment (did I mention it is all you can eat?) then hit a button that says “call server” it then says “Your server will be right with you.”
The server comes, tap tap tap at the tablet and ZOOM! Your order is off to the kitchen!
The servers are polite. They walk around with smiles and are ready to help even if they weren’t assigned to your table. They never once said “I’m not at your table let me get your server.” No matter who it was, if you called them and asked them for something, they get it for you. What a concept!
When the food shows up, they are so beautiful! Everything is put together and the smell from our table made my mouth water. I even sampled Octopus Balls (which I will be writing about in another blog post coming soon).
I tried so many different things I’ve never had before-including Octopus Balls which requires a whole different post all together. I even ate Mushrooms – which if you know me personally, I don’t do mushroom in ANY form. But a foodie has to be brave and try food as long as it’s not alive and wiggling I will definitely try it.
I think I have a love/hate relationship with India.
I love the food, the culture, the music, the movies–but recently with stories of people dying after being gang-raped my heart has been broken and the wonder that India held for me
dwindled considerably. But even with that, I still cannot get ever the completely draw this country has on me. Each time I watch a movie, or documentary or speak with friends and look at their pictures, it amazes me at the yearning I feel for a place I’ve never been. It is as if I am homesick for this country with its spices, mysteries, superstitions, food and people that speaks languages as old as time. I am intrigued by the customs, though some of them are old enough and cruel enough to break your heart. I love the history of the Rajputs and the Gods. And these are just SOME of the things. I wish to be surrounded by.
I am curious by the way things are done there on a daily basis–things from the development of friendships to falling in love. Do the girls there have girl’s nights and do they laugh and talk over dinner while talking about boys. Sure, life is hard for most there but after all, women are women, young girls are young girls and we all giggle and talk about boys no matter our socio-economic background. I’d like to sit down and talk to people, ask questions from elders and attempt at learning the sitar. I want to wear a sari, with beads and jewels and dance in the streets during holi while throwing colored powder at people.
The Taj Mahal
I want to stand close to the Taj Mahal and make a wish – sure that may sound strange but it has always been a dream of mine. If I could touch the building while making the wish then that would be the most perfect wish come through ever! But that may be too much to ask.
After all, this place is such a beautiful, mystical view that it cannot help being magical!
Here are some beautiful pictures that might show you why I am so intrigued.
Holi in India
Women in colours – India