Paris in the 1920s was a golden age for financially challenged American writers who flocked to the City of Light for the excellent exchange rate for the dollar, the liberated lifestyle, and the hottest art scene in the world. Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald and his flamboyant wife Zelda, Ford Madox Ford, Gertrude Stein, T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound, and E. E. Cummings all staked a claim in the capital of Jazz Age Europe (and were joined by Irishman James Joyce, Brit George Orwell, and a bevy of Russian and Eastern European geniuses).
Hemingway in particular captured the frenzied party atmosphere after the sacrifices of World War I. The members of his so-called “Lost Generation” would hang out on the “terrasses” of boulevard cafés, listen to African-American musicians in the smoky jazz bars, and enjoy bargain meals in the louche back streets of Montparnasse. At that time, Hemingway lived as an unknown writer with his wife, Hadley, in a tiny, sunny flat (74 Rue du Cardinal Lemoine, near the Place de la Contrescarpe), where he recalled in later books like A Moveable Feast the classic ambiance of cheery drunkards, street urchins, hard-working flower-sellers, and prostitutes with hearts of gold. Their apartment on the top floor cost only 60 francs per month—a few American dollars at the time—and Hemingway wrote his first short stories while looking out over the poetic rooftops of the city. Of course, the writer’s diet of bread and cheese was tempered by the occasional martini at the Hotel Ritz (on the Place Vendôme) with F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Hemingway retained a lasting fondness for the place.
When Hemingway returned to Paris in 1944 as a war correspondent with the American troops, he headed straight to the Ritz to “liberate” its ancient wine cellar after the German occupation—and stayed for weeks in Room 31. In the 1950s, the hotel named the Hemingway Bar in his honor and installed a marble bust of the great writer there.
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A salty breeze blowing through your hair, far-off places waiting to be explored…your Windstar cruise is just days away and it’s hard to think of much else. Except for how to pack for your cruise, that is. What will you wear on board? How should you prepare for the shore excursions? Do you need a guidebook?
Windstar cruises are all about having fun and letting go, and we intend to help you do just that. We’ve packed for more than a few cruises by now, so we have a few good tips to help you get the most out of your voyage. Just throw these items in your suitcase and let your worries fade with each passing wave.
Let’s start with the essentials. Items like these should not be left at home:
Now that we have the basics of how to pack for your cruise out of the way, let’s talk about a few things you might not have considered yet.
Whatever you do, just don’t forget to pack your sense of adventure!
I was in Bulgaria last summer with my friend. Our holiday was a combination of going out and doing a few cultural things. We were staying in Sunny Beach and when I saw in our guide that Varna, another coastal town in Bulgaria, had a beautiful cathedral. So I dragged my friend along on a 2-hour bus trip to Varna!
The tickets were really cheap. A roundtrip to Varna was only 12 euros per person. I had read in our guide that it wasn’t strange if busses arrived 30 minutes late, so we sat down at the bus station and waited paitiently.
After 50 minutes, finally a bus arrived that said “Варна.” The tricky thing was of course that we couldn’t read bulgarian and the fact that the letters were different made it even harder. But with my very limited knowledge of greek letters, I knew that the last 4…
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