Breakfast with a View and the Ferry Ride to Valletta

6 05 2017

While in Malta, I was staying in an apartment on the edge of a neighborhood called Gżira and it was managed by a hotel around the corner in the Sliema district.  I initially did not plan to use the hotel at all including having breakfast but upon arrival I was told they had upgraded me to include breakfast so off I went the first morning I was in Malta to get breakfast at the hotel.

But first the view outside my apartment window.  Nothing to boast about but very bright and sunny.

And my breakfast view.

Fast forward.  My first trip across the shore from Silema to Valletta, the capital city of Malta and a UNESCO World Heritage site, on a 10-minute ferry ride.

More to come.





Arriving in Malta

3 05 2017

I am spending my 2017 “Golden Week” holiday in the Republic of Malta, one of the smallest member states of the European Union.

Getting in from Rome FCO with a flying time of just over an hour.  You can see the whole of the country from above as you fly into Malta International Airport.

And I’m checked in.

Excited to be out and about!

I am in a neighborhood called Sliema (or technically my apartment is on the border of neighboring Gżira) which is across the harbor from the World Heritage designated capital city of Valletta.

Walking in Sliema, the first thing you notice is the windows that stick out called gallariji.  And cute doors and door signs with Christian images and saints on street corner buildings.

A lot to take in.  Time to chill with a bottle of Italian white from Duty Free!





A Walk Around the B&B and Onward to Malta from Rome FCO

1 05 2017

The morning after I arrived in Italy turned out to be beautiful.

View from the balcony of my B&B near Rome FCO.

And out for a walk.  The hotel exterior and its premises.

Stepping outside.

And back in the hotel, checked out, and waiting for my ride to the airport.

And zipped to the airport.

Goodbye Italy and off to the Republic of Malta!

 





Arriving in Rome FCO and Enjoying a Big Italian Dinner

30 04 2017

After a 12-hour flight from Seoul ICN, arrived in Rome FCO last night, was picked up at the airport, taken to my B&B near the airport, where I immediately had a big Italian dinner.  The popular restaurant attached to the B&B was packed with locals, mostly big family groups, its being a Saturday night before a long weekend.

My starter

Piazza Margherita as my main.

This girl kept chasing the house(?) dog.

Interestingly enough, the very nice B&B does not serve breakfast and the option is the above breakfast basket for 3 Euros!





Arriving in Shanghai and Getting to Ningbo

17 04 2017

So I  just spent Friday + the weekend in China on business in a city I had never been to before.

Flying out of Narita was a breeze but once I arrived in Pudong, the international airport in Shanghai, things did not look so bright.

No photos allowed so I don’t have any but immigration was a total jam.  And who would’ve thought leaving the baggage claim area when I didn’t have any checked in luggage would be so time consuming.

Arrival hall. Really?

I had to take the inter-terminal shuttle which I had trouble finding to get to my meeting point with my host and other delegates that were participating in the same conference.

The shuttle

And it was a nice day in Shanghai as we left the airport to our hotel in Ningbo about three hours away.

Our ride

Restroom stop on the way.

Arrived at hotel, had dinner.

The following morning. A nice day!

So began my stay in Ningbo, China.





24+ Hours in London

15 04 2017

After about half an hour black cab journey from Liverpool Street Station to Paddington, checked into my hotel for a one-night stay.

Lovely color scheme

View from my room

The public terrace used as, if one wishes, a smoking area.

And then I stepped out for a visit to the Selfridges before my dinner appointment.

And then my dinner appointment wrote in to tell me he had lost his voice. Didn’t mind spending time in my hotel room for a change.





The KGB Hotel of Tallinn, Estonia

11 04 2017

It is quite unbelievable that Estonia and other Baltic states were all under Soviet rule until the early ’90s.  I cannot imagine the fear people lived under and the limited freedom they were allowed.

In the only hotel in Tallinn, Estonia where foreigners were allowed to stay during the Soviet regime, is the “KGB Museum“.  On the 23rd floor of the still working hotel were the secret KGB offices used to spy on guests.  Filled with memorabilia including one room where everything is left as the KGB left it, rooms have been turned into a museum.

Near the ticket booth of the museum, you find cynical and irritated Snicker bars which we thought was hilarious.

View from the 22nd floor balcony

The door to the stairs leading up to the secret 23rd floor. The museum sign reads “entrance” at the top but the bottom part in Estonian and Russian apparently says “Do not enter” as it said when the top floor was occupied by the KGB.

Old floor guide

Selfie point

Direct to Moscow line

Our funny and excellent guide

What the KGB left in chaos.

The hotel in its present day at night








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