Friday, October 27, 2017

Travel is enhanced by friends, youngsters, doggies, new perspectives

A gathering --  family, friends, doggies -- in Bozeman, for coffee enroute to Yellowstone National Park.
From left, Bruce Keller, Rick Cosgriffe, Elliana Broscious, Christene (Cookie) Meyers, Ruth Rudner and David Muench.

It's fun seeing Yellowstone through new eyes -- and those young
eyes are learning how to photograph the park's wonders.


MY FAVORITE trips -- aside from the romantic ones  -- are family adventures, with two, three or even four generations. A cruise is perfect, with everyone doing his or her thing during the day then coming together for dinner and story-sharing at day's end.
A variety of ages and backgrounds makes for learning -- stretching, growing, looking at the world from another's point of view.
"Grannie Cookie" and Rowan Jones
 are hands on at the wonderful Musical
 Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Ariz.

 Cookie and pal Grady Martin on a hill above the Pacific,
overlooking La Jolla Shores in north San Diego.
Cookie, Keller, Kristen and Zack cruising Lake Tahoe. 
WE'VE HAD grand times with my late mother at the Folies Bergere and the Opera Bastille in Paris, splendid cruises with sisters, brothers and nieces on the Rhine River, Baltic, Alaskan 

fjords and Caribbean. I've taken my late husband Billy's grandson Rowan Jones to the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, a grand place where hands-on exhibits let one try instruments from around the globe.  Rowan, who calls me "Grannie Cookie," became a crack drummer.
We've taken Keller's daughter, Kristen, and her fiance Zack, cruising on Lake Tahoe, enjoying dinner, drinks and dancing and catching up.
Stopping to smell the roses -- or share
the ice cream. Here, Cookie with
Nick and Nora in Julian, Calif.
My Montana neighbor, Grady Martin, was a frequent visitor to southern California, where he lived for many years.  I have happy memories of our times in his old stomping grounds, now my part-time home.
Cookie, Keller and Cookie's sister Misha on San Diego Bay
aboard their favorite Hornblower for a dinner cruise
TRAVEL slows me down.  It offers the opportunity to reconnect with loved ones and learn about their towns -- or show off mine.  When my sister Misha comes to San Diego, we always take a dinner cruise. Sometimes we go for a sail, with "Captain Keller'' at the helm.
From left, niece Amarylla, Cookie's mum Ellen, sister Robbie,
and Cookie (Christene) tucking into appetizers on a Baltic
cruise a few years ago on a favorite ship, Celebrity Century.  
When I'm at her home in Atlanta, we share cooking in her beautiful kitchen. When my niece Amarylla comes down from San Francisco, we hit the aquarium or Sea World. 
I'VE TAKEN sisters, niece and my late, much missed mother on the Baltic and all around Europe. Never have I enjoyed a sail-in as much as the morning we entered the harbor in Cobh, Ireland, from where my mother's grandmother came. "I'm home," my mum cried. Later on that same cruise, in Amsterdam, we took mum to the city's legendary smoke shops, where she enjoyed a few tokes and several brownies.  We sang and told stories and made friends from all over
Friend Corby Skinner and Cookie cruising near Athens.
Europe that memorable night. That same year, my friend Corby Skinner and I traveled with a group of six other friends through the Greek Isles. Fun seeing Hadrian's Gate and ancient ruins with curious Corby.
Near the end of her long life, my grandmother Olive delighted in meeting her first great-grandchild, Amarylla (now a mother herself).  Wee Ama lovingly massaged her great-grandmum's arthritic legs. My parents lived to travel with their first great-grandchildren. 
STOPPING TO smell the flowers -- and perhaps to look one a new up with a curious niece or great-niece -- is a singular pleasure.
 Sharing your strawberry ice cream cone with a pair of hot, thirsty Yorkshire terriers is fun, too.

Keller and Cookie at the Ahmanson Theatre, Los Angeles. 

COMING NEXT: Steve Martin's lively and touching Tony-nominated musical, "Bright Star," which he co-wrote with his friend Edie Brickell, is a stunning work, with an amazing bluegrass band on stage, a touching storyline, fine acting, snappy choreography and a delightful script (no surprise there, for Martin is a terrific writer, too.) We take you opening weekend to the Ahmanson Theatre in Los Angeles where the musical is in revival and selling out, after opening a few years back in our stomping grounds, San Diego, at the Old Globe, being revised for last year's Broadway run, and worked over again by Martin and Brickell for L.A. audiences.



  1. Always a treat to enjoy your travels and journey vicariously. Family ties: priceless.

  2. Love these stories, so full of warmth, wit and wonder. Great photos, too.

  3. You two Vagabonds are stirring my wanderlust. A good thing.

  4. Oh, how exciting. You saw 'Bright Star.' We saw it in its debut at the Old Globe. Have tickets this Friday at the Ahmanson!

  5. Just discovered your gem of a blog. Funny, informative and full of heart and soul. BRAVISSIMO!