Rebecca Ford

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Rebecca Ford

My name is Becky, and I'm a travelin' Texan who has been living in Europe for the past seven years working for the US Air Force. I've spent a lot of time in Africa & the Middle East (sorry, that was a long time ago, so no blogs), recently traveled to Southeast Asia, and have a ton more trips planned in the future.

Please enjoy reading my blog.

You'll find out very quickly that I am a bit of a smart-as*, but I am also very straight-forward, honest (no sugar-coating here), adventurous, and I can offer you good practical travel advice from time to time.

I'll be hosting competitions, and the opportunity to give me assignments or tasks to complete. I appreciate all comments and will respond when I have time.

Thanks for reading!

If you enjoy reading, please check out two of my travel articles, written under the name Rebecca Dougher: about hiking the West Highland Way in Scotland, and about taking a Dracula-themed tour in Transylvania.



Europe » France » Île-de-France » Paris November 12th 2009

Yesterday I went running in the Bois de Boulogne. It was not easy to force myself out, despite the sunny day and the fact that I was running behind on my necessary 9-miler (part of my marathon training). I had to enlist Liz and Alan, my hosts, to come with me for the first 3 miles. For those of you who know me, the Bois de Boulogne was the scene of my concussion several years ago. I flipped over the handles of my bicycle and landed on my chin, causing me to temporarily lose my vision and have to rush to the hospital. After that I spent two days getting woken up every couple of hours (to make sure I was still alive, I guess; although after two days with no sleep I was ready to ... read more
Fall Colors
Jogging

Europe » France » Île-de-France » Paris November 12th 2009

Really, I'm not trying to scare anyone off. Last week, I watched a French comedian performing his show, "How to Become Parisian in One Hour." Some of his funniest bits were mockeries of American tourists in Paris, but he was spot on about certain ways to act that are quite Parisian. For example, when you go into a department store and not only don't get any service but get snubbed, you should take every piece of clothing you can carry into the changing room, rip it all off of its hangers, and then return with your pile of tangled garments to the saleswoman, tell her that nothing fits, dump it in front of her, and walk out. And when you get on the metro, you should think about something terrible, tragic, horrible. Then, imagine that your ... read more
Crowded Metro

Europe » France » Île-de-France » Paris November 6th 2009

When I worked at the U.S. Embassy in Paris, I had a lovely daily commute. I walked across the street to the boulangerie on Boulevard de Port Royal, swallowed some sort of sinfully calorific pastry, and ducked into the metro. After sticking my ticket in the turnstile while attempting not to touch anything with my bare hands, I would elbow my way past the other commuters to the edge of the platform. Once the train arrived, it was always like a game of musical chairs - without the music, and without the good-natured laughter when you lose and instead some greasy-haired 19-year-old kid gallantly takes the last remaining seat. So I would stand somewhere near the door, or clutching the disease-and-other-bodily-fluid-coated handrail, and attempt to read a book, as the sour-looking Parisian workers shoved their way ... read more
My Favorite Matisse
Pable Picasso, Paysans
Andre Derain, Grand Nu Couche

Europe » France » Île-de-France » Paris November 5th 2009

As I was jogging along the rue Francois Premier today, on my way to the river, I was halted in my tracks by the most gorgeous pair of boots. Anyone who knows my predilection for footwear (and boots in particular), will understand. I stood in the street, soaked in sweat with my black running shirt dripping in the rain, and ogled the supple brown leather, exquisite craftsmaship, and wondered how they would look on me. Then I glanced down to see the price displayed in gold type on a small black placard. 1200 euros. Good heavens. I had forgotten for a moment that I was in the 8th arrondissement, where my friends Liz and Alan have a palatial apartment (courtesy of the U.S. Embassy). This is a neighborhood where black-clad Parisians park their brand-new Porsches on ... read more
Autumn Scene
Tuileries Cafe

Asia » Hong Kong » Hong Kong Island July 12th 2009

I am leaving Hong Kong tomorrow to go back to the U.S. It was a difficult and very personal decision for me, but I feel great about it and I look forward to continuing my travels when I have someone to travel with. In the meantime, my second-to-last day here was anything but dull. It started on the Aqualuna, one of the last remaining honest-to-goodness junk boats in Hong Kong, or as their web site proclaims: "possibly the last painstakingly handcrafted traditional Chinese junk to be built in Hong Kong using age-old designs and traditional materials by an 80-year-old local craftsman....Aqualuna is known as Cheung Po Tsai in Cantonese, named after the infamous Cheung Chau island pirate who used to terrorize these waters." This is not your grandparents' junk boat, ladies and gentlemen. It is very ... read more
Wild Waves Near Repulse Bay
A Pint at the Smugglers
Masquerade Party

Asia » Hong Kong » Kowloon July 8th 2009

This past week I had the joy and excitement of trying Pekingese Duck. I had seen these happy birds hanging in shop windows in Mong Kok, with their crispy orange skins, and wondered how they tasted. I went with a couple of friends to the Spring Deer restaurant in Kowloon to try it out. The place was, as all popular local (read: Chinese) restaurants are, bright, crowded, and noisy. There was no subdued mood lighting or sound-proof panelling: the walls were unadorned white, the lights were bright fluorescent, and the tables were all full. In fact, we were only able to get a reservation by agreeing to come at 9 pm. But that's not a problem, since it's open till 3 am. It was kind of hard to find...we had to push our way past a ... read more
Duck Stand

Asia » Hong Kong » Kowloon July 7th 2009

You can buy just about anything in Hong Kong. And when I say anything, I mean anything, from high-tech computer equipment to live slimy things to stuff that I can't even identify. There are several really cool markets that I checked out. The Flower Market: Set on a the aptly named Flower Market Road, this is a bustling street crammed with people, all shopping for cut flowers, flower arrangements, and an array of strange plants that I suppose are beautiful in an other-worldly kind of way. The Yuen Po Bird Garden: I actually wandered into this out of sheer curiosity, despite the cacophonous screeches of angry caged avians. Stall after stall of tiny cages, even tinier painted porcelain bowls (I guess for food and water), and, of course, the birds. They were mostly small ornamental things. ... read more
Can You Believe I Went to the Bird Market?
Goldfish Market
Ladies Market

Asia » Hong Kong » Hong Kong Island July 4th 2009

Yesterday was the 4th of July, which, yet again, I spent outside of the U.S. For previous 4ths, I've gone clubbing in Egypt, attended parties at the Ambassador's residence in Paris, served barbecue for my neighbors in Germany, watched F-16s dogfight in Tunisia, and this year I went out on a junk cruise. A junk boat is sort of a misnomer, as it is really just a nice little yacht. You get together about 20 people, find a caterer, buy a lot of booze, and voila - junk boat party. There were a few of us Americans, but we also celebrated with Aussies and English and Indians. The catering was mostly Cajun and all American; barbecued ribs, fried chicken, seven-layer dip, deviled eggs, macaroni and cheese, cupcakes, and potato salad. Mmmmmmm.... After about two hours of ... read more
It's Not the Star-Spangled Banner, But It's Still Pretty
The Weather Was Not Perfect
So Relaxing

Asia » Hong Kong » Kowloon July 3rd 2009

Once upon a time, a married woman sold herself (I assume as a servant or slave, but who knows?) to pay for medical care for her father-in-law (would any of you do that for an in-law?). Her husband was so lonely without her that he developed the recipe for a special kind of cake, which he sold in order to buy her back. The recipe was for the traditional Chinese pastry known as Wife Cakes. Now, I'm thinking that either she wasn't worth a whole lot, or that he sold a TON of these cakes, because they are small - roughly the size of your palm - and cost mere pennies. In fact, walk into the Wing Wah bakery and ask for a taste, and you can get one for free. I learned how to make ... read more
Mixing Ingredients
Nice Balls
Brushing the Cakes With Egg

Asia » Hong Kong » Hong Kong Island July 2nd 2009

Ahhhhhhhh....... That's the sigh of relief that I exhaled as I landed back in Hong Kong's beautiful, clean, organized, modern airport. That's the sound I made when I boarded the swift, efficient Airport Express train into Central. That's the noise that escaped my throat when I stepped into the International Finance Center Building to meet my friend Travis. That's also the breath that slowly hissed out as I went shopping at the IFC mall and slipped into a new pair of flip-flops. This is the sweet sigh of relaxation that I am making as I type in a room with air conditioning and far from the beeping horns and construction site noises that are so prevalent in Hanoi. It is so nice to be back in a modern city. Already I feel rejuvenated (but just wait ... read more
Nice Modern Subway
Junk Boat On the Harbor
Night Skyline




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