Boarding Pass

By David Tykol

Dear Globetrotter:
Welcome to the 336th issue of your monthly overseas travel magazine. This issues marks a full 28 years of publication!

Some of you will remember the name Paige Palmer, whose column “Worldwide Travel Advice” ran in ITN from the very beginning until five years ago, when she set it aside for health reasons. Well, Paige is going strong and just sent us a letter, saying, “The beautiful state of Ohio celebrated its bicentennial in 2003, and Jacqueline Jones Royster produced a spectacular book, ‘Profiles of Ohio Women — 1803 to 2003.’ I am proud to be included. Annie Oakley and I are side by side on pages 208 and 209. The book is a perfect reference file of powerful Ohio women who gave their all to the state of Ohio, the nation and the world.”

That describes Paige, all right. She was a pioneer of exercise programs in the early days of television, is one of the most-traveled people in the world and has met numerous heads of state. If you’re interested in reading up on her accomplishments or just ‘visiting’ an old friend, find a copy of the book (2003, Ohio University Press. ISBN 0821415085 — 240 pp., $39.95).

Paige signed off with, “Wishing each and everyone a healthy, happy and full year of excitement in 2004!”

You may remember the name Hugh Wilkes from more recent issues of ITN (October-December ’03). Hugh sent in a progress report: “Imagine my surprise at the enormous volume of responses my request for information on using the Internet (e-mail) from foreign countries caused. I knew it was used, but not so extensively.

“Well, I have now used the Internet abroad, prompted and encouraged by all the letters in ITN. I was spending several days in a hotel at beautiful Lake Bled in Slovenia. On my way to breakfast the first morning, I noticed on a table in a corner an unoccupied computer, there for the free use of guests. I clicked the blue E and immediately it sprang into action.

“The machine must have been connected to Road Runner or some other quick connection because it reacted as fast as my computer at home. I had no difficulty in getting to my Hotmail account and reading my mail. The one mystery was that the @ key was in a different location. The next morning I sent a greeting to friends in the USA. After that, I checked my e-mail each morning.

“Being able to contact those back home, while looking at the great scenery, helped make for an unforgettable holiday. Thank you, ITN readers.”

Last month in this space I printed an info request for suggestions on things to see and do in Greece from someone who will be attending the Summer Olympics. Just as that issue was going to press, we got the same “things to see and do” request from Dorothy Watkins of New York City, who added, “Also would appreciate any suggestions about getting to the Olympics with group rates that include airfare, hotels and tickets.”

If you can help out, please write in.

The January issue also included, on page 14, a recommendation from ITN Contributing Editor Wayne Wirtanen for the book “Dark Star Safari — Overland from Cairo to Capetown” by Paul Theroux (2003, Houghton Mifflin Company. ISBN 0618134247). Just as the issue was being printed, we received the same recommendation from a reader, Lorna Tjaden of New Hope, Minnesota.

“This is a very thought-provoking book about the African continent and its people, she wrote. “In one part the author describes tipping, which he calls ‘travel tax,’ about which I could relate to other countries as well! I have read many books about the different countries I visit and I consider this one to be a truly valuable asset to any traveler’s library.”

“Love Boat” fans, on April 2, Jill Whelan, who played Captain Stubing’s daughter, Vicki, on the popular TV show, will wed her fiancée, Michael Chaykowsky, aboard the Caribbean Princess. Her TV father, Gavin MacLeod, and other cast members will be among the guests, and it will be possible to follow the whole ceremony on Princess Cruises’ website,, via the ship’s Bridge Cam.

The next day the ship will make its inaugural sailing, and the couple will spend their honeymoon on board visiting the western Caribbean.

Another happy ending — here’s a cheerful letter from Anita Lees of Vista, California: “I have enjoyed ITN for almost as many years as it has existed. In 1995, upon returning from a trip to Vietnam, I noticed a ‘Person to Person’ request for information about that country from a lady in New York City, Marianne Lynch. I was still so thrilled about my experience that I sat down and typed many pages of descriptions and advice, suggesting she go soon, as tourism was developing fast. In response, she said she had just returned from South Africa and would be happy to share her experiences. Guess what! The following year, another friend and I enjoyed two months there.

“Since our exchanges, Marianne and I have kept in touch with postcards and e-mail, and this past summer, while I was visiting New York, we managed to meet in person after eight years of long-distance communications. What a wonderful way to meet friends with the same burning interest: travel!”

ITN readers do share something special. See if you don’t agree with some of the sentiments expressed in this issue on pages 52 and 53.

Pleasant journeys! — D.T.