Rovos Rail: Climb Aboard and Travel Back in Time

Luxury train travel in South Africa described in a Rovos Rail reviewRemember pop-up books? I loved them as a kid. You’d be reading along, then you turn the page, and SURPRISE! – a fantastic 3-D illustration of a scene would spring up.

That’s what it felt like to be sitting in the balcony car at the end of the passenger train as we click-clacked our way through South Africa’s Great Karoo, sipping chilled cocktails. But I wasn’t in a children’s storybook; my pop-up was straight out of an Agatha Christie novel. All that was missing was a chalk body outline on the floor and Inspector Hercule Poirot. Continue reading

Bag O’ My Dreams

Downton Abbey PBS

The ladies of Downton know how to accessorize. Hats. Parasols. Jewelry. If only I had a lady’s maid…

Lady Mary would carry an embroidered¬†clutch. Edith? A sensible rucksack. And Lady Sybil? A lace reticule. Me? I’ve been known to resort to reuseable tote bags rather than commit to a day bag purchase.

It didn’t used to be so hard. In college we all carried JanSport backpacks. Everything you needed fit inside: calculus text-book, roller blades, a six-pack. My current work tote is a flannel number from Acme Made. It’s sleek and huge. My sister gave it to me. She’s routinely embarrassed by my handbag choices and gives me her cast-offs.

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Corset Required: The Costumes of ‘Downton Abbey’

Downton Abbey costumes at WinterthurI rolled down the car window as we approached the guard’s booth. He leaned in, delivering a heady whiff of Marlboro man. “If you don’t have tickets, you’re out of luck. We’re sold out today.” Continue reading