The Best Free Things to Do in Madrid

Some of the best things I did in Madrid last week were totally free (or so cheap they might as well be). Eating African hot peppers and 6€ Senegalese stew in Lavapies (Madrid’s version of Queens), and a week’s worth of free museum nights standing in awe in front of Guernica and Las Meninas, and staying out until 3AM with friends (and all the rest of Madrid).

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Scuba Diving in Thailand, auf Deutsch and in English

No matter where you find yourself in the world these days, whether in the middle of the Ecuadorian rainforest, on a lonely mountain road in the Caucuses, a desert dune in the Sahara, or on a scuba boat in the Andaman Sea, chances are, you will cross paths with a German. And in many cases, a slightly-off-their-rocker but highly competent and well-prepared German eager to speak German with you as soon as they learn you live in Germany.

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Two Romanias

Romania came out from behind the Iron Curtain over 25 years ago, but it’s still a country with one foot in the past as it moves resolutely into the future. It’s all factories and multinational corporations and big box stores and neo-Gothic McMansions built by Roma families next to crumbling grey apartment blocs and roads clogged with flocks of sheep and an inscrutable bureaucracy that would make Kafka’s head spin. We experienced all this and more during our last visit to Romania, where my husband and I were setting up a new factory. Here’s a story about doing business in Romania, the new land of unbridled opportunity.

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A Secret Beach

“We have a map,” the man at check-in to our backpacker bungalow hotel tells us, lowering his voice slightly, his tone conspiratorial. “A map to the secret beach. It’s not that easy to get there, but it’s not far.” Right, I have seen that movie. So has everyone else who goes to Thailand. I didn’t believe him until we followed the map to a perfect secret beach, and I’ve got the pictures to prove it. Continue reading “A Secret Beach”

Thailand Country Guide

Beaches. Island hopping. Kayaking. Snorkeling and Scuba diving. Visiting Buddhist temples. Monk chat. Night markets. Street Food. Elephant sanctuaries. Hiking. White-water rafting. Zip-lining through the jungle canopy. ATV tours. Massage. Exploring ancient cities. Whizzing through traffic on a scooter. Finding the perfect beach. The Kingdom of Thailand is the top destination in Southeast Asia, and for good reason.

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