Starling Travel

August 17, 2006

Jerry Visits Gettysburg

Filed under: Tourist Attractions — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Jerry takes trips alone sometimes. A while ago, he went to Gettysburg. Here is his story:

It's JerryTime! The Strange Trip

“I decided to take a walk. I ended up getting disoriented in the woods because, you know, one tree looks like another. And I was walking around the woods and I thought I knew the general direction to get back but I just thought, ‘I’ll take a walk. I’ll survey the scene.’ I was kind of getting a little panicky because I didn’t know one tree from another.”

“I ended going into this clearing where there’s like this long path and there’s headstones on either side. Way off in the distance, I saw this woman taking a power walk… I was lost. It was pretty far away from my car, so what I ended up doing was waiting for her to get to me. When she finally got to me minutes later, I asked her, ‘Can you tell me how to get back to the main road so I can get back to my car?'”

What happened next was far more interesting than most trips to Gettysburg.

“I haven’t been back to Gettysburg since.”

August 16, 2006

Latest Flight Advice

Filed under: Airline Travel,Travel — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Since the latest terrorist plot to take down planes in England, flying with carry-on luggage is much more difficult. Here is the latest advice for traveling on airplanes:

The restrictions are limiting even baby food:

“Baby milk and liquid baby food are allowed but the contents of each bottle must be tasted by the parent.”

Plan on checking everything and then you won’t be surprised when they allow you to take your wallet and cellphone.

Here are the current limitations:

  • No liquids: This includes drinks and toiletries. Even prescription drugs that are in liquid form need to be checked by the airport pharmacist.

  • No sharp objects: This is a restriction from the post-9-11 era. No box cutters, fingernail files or pocket knives.

  • Wheelchairs, pushchairs and walkers can be brought aboard, but require thorough inspection.

  • Baby milk and liquid baby food are allowed but the contents of each bottle must be tasted by the parent.

  • Even liquid items bought in the airport shopping after the security checkpoint are not allowed in the airport cabin.

Make sure you thoroughly check all your carry-on luggage for any questionable items. It took security over twenty minutes to find my tiny pocket knife stuffed in the back corner of my laptop bag. I didn’t even know it was there, but the bag kept getting rejected by the system. All I could do was stand by anxiously worried about missing my flight because my stupid laptop bag was setting things off. If I had searched all my pockets before we went to the airport, I wouldn’t have been stressed about missing my flight.

Once again, flying has become even MORE unpleasant. Plan for it and you’ll enjoy your travel much more.

August 15, 2006

Salt Lake City, UT: The Bohemian

Filed under: Food,Utah — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

“Let’s go to that restaurant with the beer.”

“Which one is that?” It’s not like Salt Lake City has such few restaurants with beer that I could tell which one he meant.

“You know, you asked the guy to pour the beer while you filmed him with your camera…”

“Oh yeah… The Bohemian. Yeah, let’s go there!”

Click here to see the video

Music Credit: Experimental Royalty Free Music – Laid Back Guitars

It was one of those moments when everything is beautiful. Our waiter had poured one glass of beer and I asked if it was okay if I filmed him while he poured the other. We sat on the shady east side of the restaurant outdoors and enjoyed the mild weather.

The beer? Yeah… it tasted like beer…

All beer tastes like teenaged drunken parties and vomit to me. This beer was no different. It looked so pretty, though. It was a cruel joke, looking like a frothy root beer float. Instead, it tasted like beer you should chew.

It made quite an impression on my friend, though…

Where: The Bohemian Brewery and Grill – 94 E 7200 S (Fort Union Blvd) Salt Lake City, UT 84047 Google Map Phone: 801-566-5474

August 14, 2006

Lagoon Aerial Photo

Filed under: Amusement Parks,Places To Visit,Utah — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

I wrote an article earlier about Lagoon when I was a child:

It is still around and a favorite summer time activity for the kids in Northern Utah. Local hotels sell “Lagoon Packages” to attract visitors from neighboring states.

This website has a webcam installed where you can see a aerial picture of Lagoon updated every five minutes:

I found Google Maps to be much more appealing, even though the photos are out of date, the color is so beautiful:

Lagoon on Google Maps

Sadly, my two favorite rides, The Terroride and Dracula’s Castle, are just huge boring buildings and an aerial shot of them is strangely disappointing when I think of all the “spine-tingling” fun I’ve had on those rides.

There are many locally owned amusement parks like Lagoon all over the United States. If you are feeling a little bored, plan a trip to one for the weekend. You might be surprised at how fun a trip to a local amusement park can be.

August 11, 2006

Send Me Your Postcards

Filed under: Postcards,Site News,Travel — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

When you travel, would you please send me a postcard from wherever you are with a brief description? If you do and it’s interesting, I will publish your postcard here.

Send your vacation postcards to:

Starling Travel
Attention: Laura Moncur
P.O. Box 522032
Salt Lake City, Utah 84152

It’s like sending a postcard to the whole world when you go on vacation.

August 10, 2006

Travel Posters

Filed under: Travel — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

The Los Angeles Public Library has an exhibit showcasing old travel posters. You can see it online here:

This wasn’t quite as interesting as I imagined because of the limited quantity they were showing. Back in 1995, Micrografx released ABC Graphics Suite, which was a software suite to compete with Adobe Photoshop. The software is long gone, but I still have the book and the accompanying CDs because they included a lot of royalty free photos and clipart.

My favorite of the collection is the Wood River Gallery. These low resolution photos are a collection of greeting cards, advertisements, drawings and more importantly, travel posters. Unfortunately, they aren’t easily searchable like Flickr, so sometimes I end up turning page after page looking for a perfect photo. It’s not very efficient. I don’t know what to do to make it more easy for me to use, but here is a quick slideshow of some of my favorites:

August 9, 2006

Parking At Disneyland

Filed under: Amusement Parks,California,Places To Visit — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Disneyland Parking 1958 Vs. Today

Re-Imagineering is a weblog written by Pixar employees about what is wrong with the current Disneyland and how to fix it. Most of the time they are right on the mark, but this entry is completely WRONG in all capital letters this time.

Their entry argues that because the parking lot of old Disney was so drab and boring it was a stark contrast to the magical world of Disneyland. That might have been true. Maybe even back when they built California Adventure, the parking lot WAS better than the new addition, but now, they are WRONG.

We visited Disneyland this year and I was truly impressed with the parking situation. The moment our car got on Disney property, I felt like we were already in the Magic Kingdom. Friendly employees directed our car to the structure and then within the structure, they even directed us to a parking spot. It went so easily and we weren’t driving around and around looking for a place to park our car like we did at Universal Studios.

It was so easy to remember where our car was because we were on the Goofy floor. Even the kids remembered where our car was parked, “Goofy!” Each of the floors were assigned a Disney character, which is so much easier to remember than Floor 5.

When we went down to the trams, we could take an elevator or the bank of escalators. All the escalators went down, so it was very easy to get out of the parking garage and to the tram that quickly came to take us to the park.

When we returned, all the escalators were going up instead of down. I had no idea that they even made reversible escalators, but the Disney Imagineers planned long and hard on this parking structure to make it an easy experience for people who are tired and just want to go home.

I think the writers for Imagineering need to look at the current incarnation of Disneyland with new eyes. Look at it as if you never saw the Disneyland of 1958. Look at it as a parent of today and imagine trying to get three tired kids back to the car and out of the park. The parking structure is one of the things at Disneyland that WORKS. It works so well and so efficiently that people probably never even notice it.

Pictures Via Flicker:

August 8, 2006

The Orange County Fair

Filed under: Amusement Parks,California,Places To Visit,Travel — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

Jeff Voris has a Flickr Slideshow of the pictures he took while he was at the county fair in Orange County, California. You can see it here:

These are my two favorite photos:

The Orange County Fair by Jeff Voris

The Orange County Fair by Jeff Voris

Summer is the time for county and state fairs. If you need a break for the weekend, plan a trip to your county or state fair and enjoy all the weirdness that your local area has to offer.

Via: Boing Boing: Unusual photos taken at OC fair

August 7, 2006

Sundance Film Festival: 2007

Filed under: Places To Visit,Utah — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

It seems like the Sundance Film Festival just ended, but now you have a chance to book next year’s festival and save some money while you do it. You have until August 15th to get this deal so don’t delay.

If you are planning your trip to the Sundance Film Festival, check out Starling Travel’s entries on Park City and inexpensive places to enjoy yourself while you’re here:

Via: – Sundance Film Festival 2007 is coming

August 4, 2006

Postcard Ettiquette

Filed under: Travel — Laura Moncur @ 5:00 am

When we send home a postcard, what are our motives? Is it to make sure that the people at home know we made it there in one piece? Is it to tell them what the exotic location is like?

Patti Miller has a different idea of why we send postcards:

“We claim it’s simply to stay in touch, but brief introspection will lead us to the real motive—to demonstrate that our life is much better than our friends’ or family’s at this moment,” writes Patti Miller in the Sydney Morning Herald. “We have the opportunity, at least for a couple of weeks, to create an enviable life.”

She suggests telling the truth about your experience. Sure that’s a good idea, but I think it’s always a better idea to describe a specific moment on your trip. For example:

“I’m sitting in a cafe on the main strip of the town and I’m thinking of you. The food here tastes just like the food at home, but somehow it’s better just because I’m on vacation. When I look out the window, I can see the rain. We didn’t think we’d get any rain on this trip, but here it is. We’re planning on riding our bikes on Slick Rock tomorrow. If I never see you again, just know I was having fun while I was here.”

I mostly write postcards for kids. It seems like kids like to get mail of their own, whereas adults don’t really care. Maybe I’m wrong, but I only send postcards to people who want to get mail. Otherwise, what’s the point?

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