Enosis and Taksim

Imagine if, 40 years ago, Canada had invaded the northern half of Vermont and was holding the Green Mountain State in its iron grip with its unsurpassed military might.  There would be hard feelings, naturally, and there would likely be a constitutional amendment banning maple syrup in the US. At the level of individual cities, however, it …

Blessed are the Cheesemakers

Circling back around to Limassol for a minute: I really want to do more than just write about other cities and cultures – wherever possible, I want to get some cultural flavor.  In the case of Cyprus, one of its tastiest exports is a cheese called halloumi.  I was able to pick some up at …

Cotabato, Philippines

Population, 2015: 299,000 Population, 1990: 127,000 Current temperature: 86°F (Sept. 12) McDonald’s?  Yes!  Corner of Quezon Ave and Makakua Street If you flip back two weeks, you’ll learn all about Cyprus – an island with a rift in it between Turks and Greeks.  This week’s city, Cotabato, is remarkable for a similar reason: it is …

Kazan, Russia

Kazan, Russian Federation. Population: 1,153,366.    Weather Now: Temperatures hit a record-setting  95F° on 9/6/16.     Kazan is a city of 1.1 million people, making it the eighth largest city in the Russian Federation.  The city sits on the Volga River about 620 miles upstream of Volgograd (formerly Stalingrad), scene of one of the bloodiest …

Royal Wedding

I realized after my previous post that I failed to clarify an important point: Limassol is not the capital of Cyprus.  A city called Nicosia, further north, is the capital.  But Limassol is an economic powerhouse in Cyprus, since it’s the hub for the prosperous shipping industry. Limassol’s really big claim to historical fame, at …

Jupiter’s Most Expensive Cities

With the Juno Space Probe poised to give us more information than we’ve ever had before on Jupiter, and also carrying a plastic toy brand further into space than I would have thought probable, I am reminded that so much of life is about the confines of our own perspective. It was, according to Carl …