Dubrovnik

Mention the Pietà, and most people think of Michelangelo’s delicate 1499 masterpiece in Saint Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The Virgin Mary holds the crucified Jesus in an embrace that is equal parts sadness, beauty, and piety. But there are dozens of Pietàs across Europe, all evoking similar emotions. […]

Tourists

My favorite lame travel joke used to be: “If it’s Tuesday, this must be Belgium.” On the current voyage, the new one is: “If you’ve seen one Acropolis, you’ve seen ’em all.” Except… The Greek word technically refers to the summit of a hill, with or without a […]

Talking to Zeus

Something about the lone Adonis on this precipice atop the Temple of Zeus on the Athenian Acropolis seriously intrigued me—to the point that I took 20 shots in uncooperative lighting to get the photo. There was no visible means of access to his perch, which only added to […]

Ephesus

Our friend Rick Botts has a favorite joke: “Don’t be a sheep and follow the herd.” [The joke being that sheep flock and cows herd, so if you’re a sheep following the herd, you are by definition a chronic non-conformist.] He told us this after I confessed to […]

Knights Hospitallers

A Boy’s Life #2: Like many an English schoolboy, I had a fascination with the Ordo Fratrum Hospitalis Sancti Ioannis Hierosolymitani, or The Order of Knights of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem. The Knights Hospitallers, like their rivals, The Knights Templars, defined chivalry in the Middle […]

Guns of Navarone

A Boy’s Life #1: My favorite book and movie in childhood was the WW II adventure, The Guns of Navarone by Alistair MacLean. It didn’t hurt that the gorgeous, busty Greek turncoat in the movie, played by Gia Scala, was a dead ringer for a major crush, my […]

Venezia

There was a time when the mask business in Venice was more than just a quirky feature of the tourist trade. No one really knows if the original intent was political (for anonymous voting) or social (to disguise your class and identity). But by the 12th century, both […]