Let’s Talk About Travel…

Crazy fact: The Empire State Building gets struck by lightning up to 100 times a year.

An interactive guide to what Italian gestures mean.

In Europe, you can get additional days off if you get sick during your vacation!

Five ideas for plane picnics.

Tourists throw more than 700,000 euros worth of coins into Rome’s Trevi Fountain every year.

>15 international etiquette rules. Examples: In France, don’t eat your bread as an appetizer before the meal; and in Italy, order a cappuccino only before noon.

Screen-Shot-2014-05-13-at-10.37.29-PMGraphic designers imagine an airline website that customers would actually enjoy visiting.

museum-hackMuseum Hack: funny, weird, exciting, energetic tours of NYC museums.

Screen Shot 2015-05-03 at 8.51.32 PMEmotional baggage tote, ’cause everyone has it.

Travel fantasy: Floating Farmhouse.

P.S. The weird thing we do on vacations, and the 5 best shoes for traveling. Plus, talking about cheese, books and fashion

  1. Really enjoy all these travel articles. Ive used a lot of your advice in my recent adventures!

  2. I’m «european» and I can’t remember any legislation saying that you can get more days if you get sick during your vacation… sorry, not in my country!! but Europe is «big», guess the legislation as to be different from country to country, right?!

  3. Sure you get vacation days back when you get sick! Vacation days are for recuperating, if you get sick you can’t get rested. At my work we just have to hand in a doctor’s slip that we were sick on that day. An advantage of living in Europe I guess :)
    Loved the italian hand gestures. I have a lot of italian friends and they are so LOUD a lot of the time – both verbally and with their gestures, I love it :)

  4. Totally did a Museum Hack tour of the MET when I was visiting in November. LOVED it!!!

  5. We get sick days during holidays in Australia as well – though I’ve never taken it myself.

  6. The Telegraph article says EU, which is short for the European Union, not the whole Europe! And although my country is part of the EU for a long time, this rule doesn’t work here either.

  7. Great post! Although being from Belgium, I also use these “italian” gestures! Will check it out this weekend in Rome and will throw another coin into the Trevi fountain :-) About being ill during holiday and getting extra days, unfortunately this is not the case in Belgium :-(

  8. This is sooo cool!! :) Mainly the Italian stuff, my boyfriend is Italian and I know only the gestures.. :)

  9. I love the plane food ideas! I get a little air sickness, so bringing my own treats sounds very comforting – especially bagels and little nibs of tasty liquors! (However, I may not be a super happy fellow passenger if I was next to someone with salt & vinegar chips – eek!)

    Thanks for the tips, Joanna!

    xo, Reg

  10. I’m taking all those international etiquette tips with a pinch of salt since I know the British one to be… not untrue, exactly, but completely irrelevant to practically any dinner situation you’d be likely to encounter here (especially if you are a budget traveller). Like we’re all drinking port at every meal?! (Sorry, we don’t have afternoon tea every afternoon either.)

  11. I have been to Rome twice, many years apart, and the Trevi Fountain was dry both times! I still threw a coin in though. When my husband and I travel by plane, we bring two small containers of brown rice with avocado and carrot – substantial enough to tide us over on a long travel day. Love your blog!

  12. Our family and another family was going to rent the Floating Farmhouse this summer, but decided to go for one with a pool instead. But we all loved it! Thanks for sharing!

  13. Thanks for this! What fun links you’ve found — and I LOVE that tote bag! What a gem.

  14. The international dining etiquette story is by Amanda Ruggeri, one of my other favorite bloggers ( :) And I’ve always loved the idea of Amanda Hesser’s plane picnics! Plus, one of the funny benefits of being in a relationship with an Italian is that with regard to these hand gestures, I get schooled on a daily basis. And what happens to all those 700,000 euros, btw? I hope it goes toward the fountain’s restoration.

    When is your Bay Area Mother’s Day post coming up? :)

  15. Great post! I love the idea of a plane picnic, it might make flying that bit more bearable!

    I love the international etiquette rules as well – all very interesting.

    Beccy // Bluebell & Bumpkin

  16. Love all these quirky facts–the one about the 700,000 Euros was shocking!

  17. ha, that is an awesome story. my dad used to bring camembert on road trips—the whole car would smell TERRIBLE.

  18. My husband and I once packed a picnic dinner of meat, cheese, bread and wine for our train from Paris back home to Bern, and just as we tucked into our supper a man across the aisle told us in exaggerated French-mime expressions that he was going to projectile vomit all over the place if we didn’t put our (stinky) goat’s cheese away immediately! We packed it up straight away but basically laughed the whole way home. We must have looked like total amateurs! It’s still one of my favorite travel meals though : )

  19. oh, haha, you’re right ginny. i should know the nyc skyline by now. thank you!

  20. The Empire State Building will never be the same to me after that father threw his toddler son over and then jumped himself over Christmas. The hardest part was hearing he was in his Christmas jammies. The visualization of that breaks my heart as I have a toddler son myself.

  21. Haha the one about Italian gestures! I had Italian boy in my class in school and he said “don’t care” too much :))

  22. During my lunch break (from painting my bedroom!), I finished the season finale of The Mindy Project. I love connections, and the ESB AND When Harry Met Sally both play an important role in that marvelous episode!

    Cheers to your blog, and the happy connections it brings!

    xoxo –

    Mobile, AL

  23. Love this, Joanna! I just clicked on the link for ESB and realized that’s a photo of Chicago, not NYC! Silly me, I didn’t even stop to think that it didn’t look like the Empire State until a saw a comment on that link. Just thought you might want to know!