There’s No Place Like Home

Sep 1, 2013 by Mark Paliscak

Like most folks in Arizona and Rocky Point, late summer is an ideal time to travel, as the temperature and humidity peak and the need to get to a cooler climate becomes an unavoidable oasis. This summer I was very fortunate to be able to travel abroad and visit some amazing places. In July, I started my journey to Barcelona, Spain. WHAT AN AMAZING PLACE!! If you have never traveled to Barcelona, it is a MUST VISIT place. I have traveled to many countries and cities around the world, and Barcelona wins hands down by far…with of course the exception being our beautiful Mexican beach town of Rocky Point. Barcelona had so many amazing places to see. Some of my favorites were the tour of the FC Barcelona soccer stadium, the Olympic village, the sea port, the tapas restaurants, the fantastic Mediterranean beaches, the parks and the amazing abundance of statues and ornate buildings. And of course, the legendary night life was truly amazing. Things really don’t even START until 1 in the MORNING! I now know why the siestas are so popular in Spain. Spain is definitely the land of beautiful culture, landscape and women.

From Spain, I traveled onto France to attend the wedding of my dear friends, Sharon and Fraser. The wedding took place in Poiters at a chateau in the French countryside. The views were absolutely amazing as was the beautiful bride and both families. I had heard some sharp commentary on the French people and their dislike of North Americans. I, however, found quite the contrary. Unlike Spain where I can speak the language, I literally knew 4 words in French. Everywhere I went, the French people were so warm and accommodating to us and readily offered to help with whatever English they knew. Some of my highlights in France were the medieval cities and castles from the 1200’s, the Arc De Triomphe, the Notre Dame Cathedral, Jim Morrison’s tombstone and cemetery, the vineyards, the Paris Louis Vuitton flagship store and of course the AMAZING, massive Eiffel Tower. I had read and seen so many pictures of the Eiffel Tower, but to see it up close and especially with the amazing light show at night, is a life time experience you will never forget!

Overall, I loved the European lifestyle of shopping daily for fresh fruits and vegetables and lack of processed foods, biking and walking most everywhere you go, the kick back lifestyle and the genuine love of life and friends that they possessed. I will forever hold onto this part of their lifestyle. One thing not so great in Europe…the price of almost everything. Expect to pay $17 for a normal cocktail at a restaurant or club! Dinners are double or triple what we pay here in Mexico. Clothing, entertainment, food, beer, wine…everything was two to three times as expensive. However, with smart planning you can minimize the extra costs for your trip to Europe. I look forward to next summer and my return for some more fun adventures…definitely Barcelona will be on the ticket again!

In August, my family and I went north to Canada to Niagara Falls! What an amazing place and a must-see once in your life. If you have never embarked on the Maid of the Mist boat ride tour, you must plan it sometime! The boat literally takes you to the edge of the falls, first on the American side and then over to the Canadian side. Everyone on the boat is given raincoats as the “mist” is more like standing in the shower in your clothes! The cool, sparkling water was so refreshing and truly amazing…you can easily see this from the beaming people all across the boat! Another awesome attraction in Niagara Falls is the Skyride Ferris Wheel. The ride is massive reaching 175 feet high overlooking Niagara Falls. It was my favorite Ferris Wheel ride of my lifetime! Lastly, the nightly fireworks at 10pm overlooking the falls put the icing on the cake each night and was the topping for another amazing Canadian day. Kudos go out to the warm Canadian people and their gracious hospitality!

As my travels draw to a close at the Jersey shore celebrating my best friend Ray’s birthday, I am beyond thankful for the remarkable sights, places and of course new friends I met on my travels especially Omaid, Enrico and Eloi. They have all changed my life for the better and I look forward to returning in the near future. I also long to return home and to see Rocky Point and am so grateful for the amazing place that we have right here in Mexico. Our beaches and sea water are unrivaled to any place I saw in Europe, Canada or America! I truly hope each of your summers was memorable and you all have some life enhancing trips and stories to keep with you forever. Life is short, make each day count and each moment count…and make your life the very best! After all of your travels, there is NO PLACE LIKE HOME and I look forward to seeing you at your home…right here in beautiful Rocky Point! See you at the beach…ADIOS AMIGOS!!

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