Tag Archives | cities as a couple

7 Questions with ‘As We Saw It’

In our continued quest in introduce you to some of the most interesting traveling couples, this week’s installment is one of the best.  Meet Dan and Linda of www.aswesawit.com.  This empty nester duo found freedom and a bucketload of adventure on the road.  Together they have visited over 40+ countries on five continents!  Best of all?  They met online!  They have been together  for over 14 year.  Congrats!

1)  Our fave post of yours is “The Day Ecuador Kicked Us Out”.  Give us the quick version.  How did you keep your cool?

She said: I kept reminding myself that they were only doing their job and that I’d never win, plus nothing could be accomplished by breaking into tears. Then we started brainstorming to figure out our options.

He said: Easy… I have a saying:  “It is what it is” and thus you just deal with the problem at hand.  I am an entrepreneur and a problem solver.  So once we figured out the situation, we made plans, proposed solutions to the authorities, won them over by our cooperation and ability to provide choices from a humble position and moved on.

 

Dan and Linda visiting the Sea of Galilee.

Dan and Linda visiting the Sea of Galilee.

2)  If you had to travel with someone else besides your travel partner, who would it be?  (this person can be living, historical or mythical?)

She Said: My mom. It’s a lifetime dream I’ll never accomplish. When I was younger I watched her enjoy a series of trips with her mother including a Scandinavian cruise and an opportunity to watch the Oberammergau Passion Play in Germany. Unfortunately, at 89 and in a wheelchair, she’s unable to travel as she’d like so she prefers to stay at home.

He Said:  That would be Yeshua the Messiah (known in the Christian world as Jesus) since He would be able to teleport us anywhere and save the long-haul flight time and bring an interesting perspective to people and cultures since he can see through the lies.

 

3)  Being empty nesters, how do you keep in contact with family and friends?  Is it tough to live the nomadic lifestyle? 

She said: All five of our children and Dan’s parents visited us when we were living in Panama. Email, Whatsapp, Facebook and Skype help us stay in touch. The toughest part is knowing that my mom is so far away and can’t visit. I miss her and it’s hard to keep in touch with her because she doesn’t have a computer or cell phone.

He said:  We use Skype and Facebook to keep in contact.  Our family follows us there and for the most part we are fairly independent.

 

4)  We know you two are huge foodies…. If you had to eat one last meal, what/ where would you eat?

He said:  My last meal would be a Middle-Eastern style meal in Jerusalem… Those meals can go on forever and the food never stops.

She said: Oh, that’s a hard question because I’m crazy about Greek salads and their massive hunks of feta cheese. On the other hand, I also adore hummus and could happily consume bowls of it with a spoon. So I sort of agree with Dan … except for one thing: It wouldn’t be in Jerusalem. There was a lovely Arab restaurant atop a rooftop in Yafo (Jaffa) that brought out 20 – no kidding, 20 – mezze dishes and a mega basket of laffa bread, before our entrées even arrived! And their lemonade was amazing.

 

As We Saw It visiting Jordan.

As We Saw It visiting Jordan.

5)  What is the great challenge as a couple and individual living and traveling abroad?

He said:  Traveling for any extended period can be a great task on a relationship as well as a great building experience depending on how you handle it.  No matter how close you are as a couple, you still are different people and must learn and adapt to those differences, either by helping your partner change their habits or changing yourself to accept the differences.

This goes back to one of our first long term trips through Europe and dealing with a travel difference that hit me in the face in Venice, dragging our suitcases over all those bridges. For me it was like I had to do everything and it just boiled over.  After the trip, I reflected on the experience.  At first I was mad at Linda for her travel style.  Everything she did seemed to rub me the wrong way.  As the time went on through that year, I kept on looking back at that trip and dreading the upcoming long-term trip.  Time has a way of revealing yourself in situations!

I realized that much of this was on me and thus I decided to make a conscientious decision NOT to get upset on the next trip and to be more patient and understanding with her travel style.  This decision was seriously put to the test after about a week into a 3 week trip when another business situation crept into sight.

We found out that we needed to go to Asia so we ended up on a 10-week trip while packed for a 3-week one.  The change in my mindset ended up with us having the best time ever and brought us, if possible, even closer as we thoroughly enjoyed our private pool time in our own villa in Bali, Indonesia.

So from that point forward, travel has still brought us closer together with each trip and the challenges they bring.

She said: Dan and I are wired differently. He can easily multitask whereas I get completely lost whenever I focus on more than one thing at a time. It’s been hard for him to understand and just as hard on me, trying to do something I’m unable to.

 

6)  If you could solve one problem in the world what would it be?

He said:  Religion.  I would eliminate it since religion is used to separate and kill one another.

She said: I’d teach people not to take offense and to let go of anger, envy, bitterness and resentment. None of those produce anything beneficial.

The traveling duo in Lisbon.

The traveling duo in Lisbon.

7)  You knew it was coming…. What has been your greatest travel fight/disagreement?

He said:  Actually this is a very good question because I actually can’t find a “great fight,” travel or non-travel.  I’d have to say it would have to be in Richmond, Virginia, where for some reason which I can’t remember, I got mad and went off to photograph a building, then got separated from Linda and couldn’t find her.  So I just went on shooting around downtown Richmond.  Finally I thought this was totally stupid and we started texting to find each other.  To make it worse, Linda’s phone was dying and that added to the stupidity of the fight.

She said: I’d say it occurred during that first long trip we took together. Lugging a suitcase up and down stairs takes a lot more effort and time when you’re as short as I am. Dan kept coming back to help me with my baggage so we could keep moving. By the time we got to Venice’s many bridges Dan was so exasperated with my slowness that he finally blew up, “I am never going to travel with you again! From now on we are taking separate vacations!” Fortunately he changed his mind before we had another opportunity to travel.

1000Fights: Linda, we had the exact same fight!!!!  Who knew there were so many stairs in Venice?

A hearty thank you to Dan and Linda from As We Saw It.  What a great example of couples that make traveling work for them.  Thank you for taking the time to visit with us and our readers.  Happy travels!

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Trip To Rome With My Dictator Wife

In 2011 my wife (The Barcelonan Beauty) and I decided to take a trip to Europe. We set out for an enjoyable break from the daily grind back in the U.S. After all, it’s a vacation – a time to relax, right?

At least that’s what I thought.

It all started in Barcelona, where we stayed for two weeks (that’s where my wife is from and where my in-laws live). Our plan was to stay in Barcelona, visit her family, and head off to Andorra for three days, to be followed by a weeklong stay in Rome.

Andorra fell through because my wife’s cousin Edu (short for Eduardo) was plagued with a fierce cold after he agreed to drive us up to the Pyrenees Mountains, for some skiing and a nice spa day in Caldea.

Sure, I was disappointed, but it wasn’t too big a deal. At least not compared to the level of disappointment and frustration I was about to experience in Rome.

Her personal Reign Of Terror taken from the Power Brokers Playbook.

Don’t let her cute little smile fool you – she’s a Travel Dictator of the highest order.

Don’t let her cute little smile fool you –
she’s a Travel Dictator of the highest order.

It’s important to me that you know I love my wife and she loves me. She’s a loving, compassionate, and (for the most part) tenderhearted person. I speak the truth when I tell people she really is my best friend.

But when it comes to traveling (be it to Rome or to Disney Land) my Barcelonan Bride makes Mussolini look like the Dalai Lama. Yes, when traveling, her absolute power corrupts absolutely.

And when she puts on her Dictator’s Hat, like she did in Rome, I’m sure to become a dissident. And that’s exactly what happened.

Here were the planks of her Travel Manifesto during her Reign Of Terror in Rome:

  • Subjects must strictly adhere to the Rome Itinerary put together by Barcelonan Beauty. Variations from the formal Rome Itinerary will result in endless bickering and forced celibacy.
  • Any purchases of souvenirs for the sake of enjoyment and remembrance must be approved by Barcelonan Beauty. Transactions that are not approved will result in endless bickering and forced celibacy.
  • Rome Itinerary takes precedence over subject’s hunger, sickness, and general lack of enjoyment. Voicing concerns of any kind is punishable by way of … you guessed it, endless bickering and forced celibacy.

During our weeklong stay in Rome I violated all three planks set forth by the Barcelonan Beauty.

The benevolent and misguided tyrant that she became.

To her credit, my wife is an expert event planner and she did arrange the entire trip to Rome. But her itinerary was so rigid it was difficult to enjoy anything, and I loathe having to abide by rigid plans or itineraries of any kind – especially when I’m on vacation.

For me, relaxing means enjoying the moment and taking in all of the details of my surroundings.

In Rome, there are thousands of years of history staring at you, everywhere you turn. The Coloseum, St. Peter’s Basilica, Piaza Navona, Spanish Steps, Trevi Fountain, the Roman Forum, the Vatican Musuems… and it’s all so spectacular.

But I was miserable because I was against the clock the whole time.

At one point, I saw this awesome gladiator helmet that a street vendor was selling. I wanted to buy it, and I did.

The moment she saw the price she screeched, “Twenty euros!”

Here I was on a vacation, trying to enjoy the fruits of my hard work and she’s not having it. I didn’t hear the end of it for the rest of our trip. That’s because I violated Plank #2 of her Travel Manifesto.

But that didn’t stop me from violating the others.

The Hotel Turner, where we stayed.

The Hotel Turner, where we stayed.

When we first arrived in Rome, we had found our hotel and she was ready to hit the city immediately – that must have been on her itinerary. But I was starving.

We don’t stop at a local shop to eat (where you know the food is going to be awesome). What do we do instead?

To abide by the plans she made, we were to take a bus to our first destination (the Vatican Museum) and we would get something to eat there.

And more than an hour and a half later, I ate the worst reheated (by way of a microwave) linguine ever in my entire life – in Rome!

She agreed that the food was horrible, but it didn’t help matters when it came to her must follow itinerary. She pushed on, and pushed me along with it.

I complained and complained and she responded to my complaints as vigorously as I dealt them. As a true dissident, I violated Plank #3 of her manifesto – speaking out against her Ruling Power.

And later on during our trip I tossed Plank #1 aside when we visited the Coliseum. We were supposed to go through the guided tour together. But the moment I got my headphones, she went one way with her Audio Guided tour, and I went in the exact opposite direction. I veered from the itinerary – with a big grin on my face.

Lots of bickering minus the mandatory makeup sex.

To reiterate, my wife and I love each other deeply. In fact, this coming December 3rd is our tenth year anniversary.

The best Linguine Con Vongole I have ever eaten in my life!

The best Linguine Con Vongole I have ever eaten in my life!

And while we did fight a lot on our trip to Rome and didn’t enjoy as much intimacy as we would have hoped, we were still together doing our thing. In retrospect, I really enjoyed Rome and all that it has to offer and so did she. We still talk about it and will for the rest of our lives together.

Right before the end of our trip, we did manage to patronize a small little restaurant where I had the best Linguine Con Vongole I have ever eaten in my life – all arranged by my Barcelonan Bride.

– Meetch Martinez

Meetch Martinez is the founder of husband-ology.com. Married for nearly a decade, he’s learned (often times the hard way) how much work is truly involved in building a healthy, happy and rewarding marriage. With his psychobabble free, no-nonsense style of writing, he constantly contributes to the development of other peak performing husbands (as well as his own).

He enjoys writing about sex, conflict resolution, romance, finances, and everything in between – when it comes to married life.

@1000Fights  A huge thanks to the Martinez for sharing their Roman Holiday!  Check out Meetch’s Blog, it is a ton of fun.  Would you like to share your couple travel adventure on our site?  Drop us a line.  We would love to have you.

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5 Great Cities for Couples

As you know, 1000 Fights is all about encouraging couples to get out and see the world together.   We have put together our 5 favorite couple travel cities.  These are not the “most” romantic cities for couples…look for that post next month!  What we have put together is five great cities to travel as a couple with something for both of you.  Its no secret that we strongly recommend that when couples travel, you spend some “alone” time seeing things that interest you “sans” your mate.  While some folks frown on this, it really works for us.

How did we select these cities?  First of all, it is a bit limited, we only picked cities that we have been to and are very familiar with.  Have you been to a great couple city?  Zing us a comment below.  Besides that, we picked cities that appealed to us individually and collectively.  Cities that could do it both, entertain us on our own and together and do it with panache!

fountain rome italyRome for Couples

For the Gals:

Let us help you plan your “girls” day in Rome.  Start off in the morning at the Villa Borghese.  The Villa is surrounded by a huge central park right smack dab in the middle of Rome.  The villa houses the newly renovated Borghese Gallery.  The Gallery itself is a work of art, not to mention the works of art displayed inside.  Don’t miss Bernini’s famed Apollow and Dahne.  In a word: stunning. (galleriaborghese.it).

After you have taken in the majesty of Borghese, why not hit a famed roman bath/day spa?

For the Guys:

What is more manly than standing in the colosseum and shouting to the world, “ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED!?”  Channel your inner Russell Crowe.  Besides Pamela Anderson’s chest….the colosseum is likely one of the most photographed structures that man has ever made.  With that said, both of them are much more impressive in person.  Throw down the extra euros and take a real tour.  The little details on the colosseum are so impressive.  The stadium could seat 50,000 people!

To mark the grand opening of the sporting complex, a hundred-day games were held by Emperor Titus in AD 80. In the process, some 9,000 wild animals were slaughtered!  The entire floor was flooded on occasions and great sea battles were staged!  How cool is that?

Together time:

Rome is a great walking town.  We recommend the Trevi Fountain.  Toss a coin into the fountain and you will return to Rome.  Two coins and a new romance will blossom. (hopefully with the one you are with?)  Three coins a happy marriage.  Four coins?  That just means you don’t have enough for gelato.  Don’t make this mistake.

 

London for Couples

Jane austin London EnglandFor the Gals:

Simple!  Leave the guy behind and rent a car and head to Jane Austen’s house!

For the Guys:

We highly, highly recommend the Imperial War Museum:  http://www.iwm.org.uk/.  For starters the entire museum is free!!!  Save the cash, we won’t tell!

Together time:

We have two really good ideas for you.  The first is to catch a play in the West End.  Dress up to the nines and have a great dinner right on the West End and see some incredible theatre.

For those on  a budget, grab some curry at one of the many little street shops and ride the London Eye together.  The views are to die for!

 

New York for Couples

For the Gals:

New York, New York

Shopping! On you marks… get set… GO!  New York is also a great place to take and do some personal pampering.  There are an endless supply of amazing spas, and salons.

For the Guys:

New York is all about the food and the sports!  There is nothing in the world better than a fat slice of Brooklyn pizza, just dripping with cheese and pepperoni!  BoooYa!  Then take in a game-pick your pleasure:  Yankees, Mets, Knicks, Rangers, Islanders, Giants or Jets!  So much to choose from!

Together time:

The Big Apple is a very special place for couples.  Our fave couple experience is take the elevator to the top of the Empire State Building.   We picked the perfect evening recently, the building was in the clouds and lit up blue!  It was so beautiful.  The view from the top is not to be missed.

 

Vancouver, CanadaVancouver BC for Couples

For the Gals:

Ditch the guy and take a ferry over to Victoria Island for the day!  It is well worth the trip.  Candidly if you pull maps up on google, Victoria is a hop, skip and a jump away from Vancouver.  In reality it is a bit further.  It will take all of a day to get there and back and see a few of the better sites.  The ferry terminal from the mainland is a bit out of Vancouver.  The ferry across the drink will take 90 mins or so.  Bring a girlfriend and chat it up while taking in some truly amazing scenery.  Arriving in Victoria you can take high tea at The Fairmont Empress, then you can hit Butchart Gardens or do some antique shopping in the antique district.

For the Guys:

Vancouver BC is loaded with outdoor adventures.  Take out a kayak, rent a bike or just head for the hills.

We also hear they have a pretty good hockey team.  Watching hockey with a bunch of Canadians is an experience every man should have.

Together time:

Vancouver is a great couples town.  For the best in couple time we suggest a few ideas:  First you must dive into the food scene.  We did a post on some of our faves to give you a head start.  Then we highly recommend taking a stroll down by the waterfront or in one of the many parks in town.

paris franceParis for Couples

For the Gals:

Just go here and thank us later:  http://www.girlsguidetoparis.com/

For the Guys:

France does have something to offer the Hommes.  We recommend taking in the Military Museum aka Les Invalids.  I know what you are thinking…France has one of those?  Yep, and its pretty cool.  See Napoleons tomb as well as tributes to French generals when they knew how to fight wars.

Together time:

If we have to give you ideas for this, you have bigger problems!  For those romantically challenged here is our sure fire recipe for a perfect evening in the City of Love.  In the early evening, hop on hte metro to the Basilique du Sacre Coeur in Montmartre.  Watch the sun set over Paris holding the hands of your lover.  Then experience the delicious cuisine of Montmartre.  Then ????

So that is our humble list of great couple cities.  Do you agree?  Disagree?  Did we miss a city?  Just click below, we would love to hear from you.

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