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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Jan. 14, 2011 / 9 Shevat, 5771

Greg and Jane's Excellent Adventure

By Greg Crosby



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | The old axiom, "travel is the best education," has new meaning for me now that we have returned from our latest trip to New York. Not only have I been educated, I have received the traveler equivalent of a P.H.D. In a week's time I've learned more than the 12 years I spent in the public school system. Keep reading while Professor Crosby enumerates for you all the things I have learned from this travel adventure, beginning with Day One.

Ticketed and confirmed for an early morning flight on December 27th, the blizzard that struck the eastern seaboard put us in traveler limbo-hell for two days. The good news was we didn't have to sleep at the airport; the bad news was it cost us $200 in carfare for nothing and we didn't know when we would be able to get another flight out. For almost two days we were prisoners in our own home.

It all started when we arrived at the airport and checked in at the appointed time. The woman at the check-in desk looked at our tickets then back at us with an expression that ran the gamut between distain and disinterest and told us matter-of-factly that our flight had been cancelled. Silly us. We had foolishly trusted the United Airlines website which informed us that our flights were absolutely on schedule … right up until we left for the airport!

Companies like United are constantly urging customers to use the internet instead of calling on the phone, so you'd think they would at least try to keep their website up to date. I should have trusted my own gut. Intuitively I just know that it's always better when you can speak with a real human being (which is becoming harder and harder to do). So the first learning lesson of this trip: NEVER, NEVER TRUST THE FLIGHT INFORMATION YOU GET OFF AN AIRLINE'S WEBSITE. Or as Ronald Reagan once said, "Trust but verify." Or in this case don't trust at all, verify at once with a real-live person on the phone, if you can.

We were able to get on a flight two days later and arrived in New York on December 29th. I don't know if it was because of the snow banks on the roads or the added tourist traffic coming in for New Year's Eve, but the car trip from Kennedy to our hotel in midtown Manhattan took somewhere in the neighborhood of three hours. That's right, about five hours for the first 2,500 miles and three hours for the last 15 miles. Lesson number two: Just because the plane lands doesn't mean you've arrived at your destination.

We dragged ourselves through the hotel lobby and up to the registration desk. When the desk clerk told us that the room we had reserved was not available on the floor we had requested it was just like that gut-wrenching scene from "The Out-Of -Towners." Happily, though, we fared much better than Jack Lemmon and Sandy Dennis did in the picture. We were given an upgraded suite (although on a higher floor) for the same money. They turned out to be the best rooms we'd ever had at the hotel. Lesson three: Sometimes life is actually better than the movies.

There were plans made to get together with family and friends while in New York. Most of those plans went right down the old pipe. Friends, for one reason or another, just couldn't get in to the city to see us on this trip. And then there was a bit of family friction, a bit more than usual, which brought a sour note to the whole thing. The good news was, we had a hell of a good time with the other loving family members that we did get to spend time with. And that brings us to lesson number four: Not all family members are created equal.

All in all the trip was not a bad one as trips go. New York City in the winter is magical. The restaurants are always great, the city itself is wonderful, and the shopping is the best. The family thing was unfortunate, but as I said, the good people we spent time with made it all worthwhile.

Lesson number five: Pick a time other than the Christmas/New Year week to visit New York City. Although we were in last year at the very same time and it didn't seem nearly as frantic, this year the crowds were overwhelming. I'm guessing a visit just after Thanksgiving might be a better time to be in the City during the holidays.

"Travel is the best education," they say. But sometimes I wonder if the happiest people might be the ones who maybe aren't so darned educated.

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.

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© 2008, Greg Crosby

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