Thank you for all of the nice emails commenting on last week’s story about Asheville, North Carolina, and my kids. Your remarks reminded me of all of the friends I have made during years of travel and reporting. I’m grateful that I have met many of you personally – on ships, at conventions and in ports of call. If you missed that story, you can find it here: You Can’t Go Home Again? I Did. Next Adventures? Barging In France & Off To NYC For A Big Seabourn Announcement.
I’m still in Asheville, preparing to leave this week for New York, where Seabourn has a big unveiling. I’m told that “something’s cooking” for the luxury line’s newest ship. That stands to reason. The company recently announced a partnership with world-renowned American chef and restaurateur Thomas Keller, the culinary genius behind a trio of Michelin-starred restaurants – The French Laundry, Per Se and Bouchon.
Coincidentally, a couple of those restaurants bear the imprint of Seabourn Encore’s designer, Adam D. Tihany. Earlier this year, I traveled to New York’s design district to interview Adam. You can find that story and video at Meet Seabourn Encore’s Designer: Adam D. Tihany.
I’m extremely grateful to have such a wide circle of friends, colleagues and acquaintances. And while most of my time with them is spent in professional settings (yes, even the cruises are professional settings), for the past two weeks I’ve been spending time with my biking buddies and others. I write so much about bikes on my blog that some people have commented that it should be named “The Avid Cyclist” instead of the “The Avid Cruiser.” Well, the two go hand-in-hand in my opinion. Bikes and boats, particularly river boats, marry two of my favorite forms of travel.
Today, I reconnected on the bike with a high school classmate from 1976. Coincidentally that was the same year that ABBA performed “Dancing Queen” for the first time on Swedish television in Stockholm on the eve of the wedding of King Carl XVI Gustaf to Silvia Sommerlath. We were not at the latter event by the way but then you probably weren’t either.
I’ll be leaving these beautiful mountains and my friends soon to return to Europe and my first-ever hosted barge cruise. I fly next Sunday, and I’ll be flying in a business class seat that cost me about the same as an economy class seat. How so? See my post about Flying First & Business Class For Cheap. And if you have questions, please don’t hesitate to leave them in the comments box so that all can benefit from the engagement.
Happy (biking) trails, Ralph