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Author Archives: Fred Hoyt

The Real Alcazar

Seville March 12, 2020 “Real” in Spanish means “royal”, and the “Real” Alcazar we saw today is real in both senses—regal (it’s the oldest continuously used palace in Europe) and the top of the line. Our guide pointed to it as one of the contributors to her story of Seville as a blend of the … Continue reading »

Categories: Spain 2020 before the virus hit, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

37 at 37

March 11, 2020 Jerez Seville 22 hours of flights and airports, three movies, and over 4500 miles in the air, and we’re finally in Andalusia. Checking with my gps, however, discloses that we’re at the 37 th parallel, 3737 miles from home. And really out of touch with much news from the United States. I … Continue reading »

Categories: Spain 2020 before the virus hit | 1 Comment

Pre Mayan Mexico: land of the big heads

January 4, 2020 If you think—and some of you I know do—that I’ve got a big head, you should see some of the statues I’ve been looking at today. From the Olmec civilization, circa 1200-200 BC. You can find them in lots of places; we first did a year ago, at the National Archeological Museum … Continue reading »

Categories: Yucatan 2020 | Leave a comment

Highland Chiapas State–Colonial Mexico

January 2, 2020 Carolyn’s desire to see more pre-Colombian ruins led us to the village of San Cristobal de las Casas, high in the mountains in southern Mexico. We’re at 6600 feet, 16 degrees north of the Equator, in another charming colonial village of about 450, 000 people. The village dates from 1528, with some … Continue reading »

Categories: Yucatan 2020 | Leave a comment

“Ruined” by 4 Mayan Sites

January 5-6, 2020 We’ve spent the past two days exploring four more Mayan sites. Though the Mayans occupied the area for over 1000 years (roughly 200 BC until 1400 AD), and left over 1500 known cities, the five (counting Palenque) we visited spanned most of the entire period. The biggest ruins in the Yucatan might … Continue reading »

Categories: Yucatan 2020 | Leave a comment

Downhill and Backwards in Time to Palenque

January 3, 2020 We’re only 58 miles (as the crow flies) and 6200 feet lower than we were yesterday, but getting from the colonial charm of San Cristobal and its nearby Mayan descendants to the classical Maya ruins at Palenque was almost a six hour trip. Part of that was the descent which followed a … Continue reading »

Categories: Yucatan 2020 | Leave a comment

Is a game drive like a box of chocolates?

May 22, 2019 in the Johannesburg airport Carolyn insists that a game drive is “like a box of chocolates”, but after six drives at Sabi Sabi (not counting  the ride to Skukaza airport which went through the Sabi Sands game preserve, which resembled another one), I’m not entirely persuaded. Her point is that “You never … Continue reading »

Categories: Southern Africa 2019 | 2 Comments

“Africa is a great place to do business . . . if you can navigate the drama”

May 16, 2019 Sandton City “School” started again (loved that four day weekend), and we had a full day of business speakers.  The overall theme reminded me of a comment a speaker in India contributed to my repertoire, “Whatever you say about India, the opposite is also true.”  The same may be said about the … Continue reading »

Categories: Southern Africa 2019 | 2 Comments

Dr.Livingstone, I presume?

May 11, 2019 Perhaps the most famous words in African journalism in the 19th century were Stanley’s quest to find Dr. Livingston [sic] , a medical missionary/explorer who was the first European to see Victoria Falls.  Partly in honor of finding what is the number one tourist spot in Zambia, the grateful British renamed Constitution … Continue reading »

Categories: Southern Africa 2019 | Leave a comment

There’s Gold in them hills

May 19, 2019 Sabi Sabi We spent yesterday exploring Johannesburg, and, in the process, learning about the history, which, as in many other countries, helps explain the present (and the challenges of doing business there). Johannesburg is a late 19th century city, founded on gold.  As I’ve mentioned, that gold  helped shape South Africa in … Continue reading »

Categories: Southern Africa 2019, Uncategorized | 4 Comments