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Easytravel101

Back in the 1980s, on a train heading for Budapest, I stood in the aisle with my elbows on the edge of an open window, enjoying the moonlit countryside rushing by. I was soon joined by a Czech woman who was doing the same thing. She told me she was on her first trip out of her country. I asked her if she was excited about visiting Budapest. She said she was most excited about eating a McDonald’s hamburger. The buzz throughout Eastern Europe was that Hungary had just opened a branch of the American chain.

Charles Brice portrays a CIA hacker in the new Netflix spy series, “In From the Cold." He describes his character as "trustworthy, loyal, unafraid to speak his mind and he loves his momma dearly." As for himself in real life, Brice said he's "as skilled in technology as any millennial who grew up during the time of Myspace and AOL Instant Messenger. Chris, on the other hand, is not only a highly skilled hacker — he is one of the best, which is exactly why Chauncey (Cillian O’Sullivan) conscripts his services." The Brooklyn resident will also be seen in the third season of Showtime's "City on a Hill."

I’m thinking back on my favorite European memories, and my favorite Europeans, including Herr Jung, the German schoolteacher who passed away not long ago. When I close my eyes, I can still imagine Herr Jung walking me around his hometown … and I still hear his caring teacher’s voice.

Actress Emma Malouff (“1883”) said she loved working on Ryan Murphy’s FX series “Impeachment: American Crime Story.” “Having had the opportunity to portray Allison Tripp, the daughter of Linda Tripp — played by the brilliant Sarah Paulson — was an experience I will never forget,” said the Los Angeles resident. “When (filming) took place, Allison and I would have been the same age — 18. She had to watch her mother degraded and ridiculed by the public. To make it truthful for myself, I had to step back. How would I feel if my mom was bombarded by hurtful headlines and our family's privacy stripped away in an instant? I had to create those experiences and emotions for myself and imagine the thoughts she must have had running through her head at the time, so my performance could be present.” Fans may follow her on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/emmamalouff/).

This year, I fully expect to see a Department of Transportation (DoT) ruling that airlines must assure that any minor traveling with a family be seated adjacent to an adult family member without requiring either to pay an advance seat selection fee. But I wouldn't be surprised if that turns out to be the year's only important new consumer protection.

“I thought Sasquatch was a creature primarily of the Pacific Northwest,” said Will Clinger, the Chicago-based host of the PBS series, “Wild Travels.” “But in a segment we shot for (the PBS series), we were surprised to hear from members of the Sasquatch Outpost in Bailey, Colorado, that there have been hundreds of Yeti sightings in that neck of the woods — even more surprising when you consider that on our 2-1/2-hour drive to Bailey, we didn't even see a squirrel.”

I’m following Edwin on a walk around York — the most interesting stop between London and Edinburgh. Edwin is a spry retired schoolteacher who stays active by leading town walks and giving private tours. Today, he’s showing me around to illustrate why, in his mind, York is such a fascinating city.

When I look back on 2021 and consider the outlook for this year, my primary focus remains "caution." You'd think that 2022 must almost certainly be an improvement over last year, but the old aphorism comes to mind: "Cheer up," they said; "things could be worse. So I cheered up. And, sure enough, things did get worse." I'm not that pessimistic about 2022 — at least not yet — but I'm also pretty sure 2022 will still be a long way from "normal."

Catie Li kicks off 2022 with her fashion line for Amazon’s The Drop collection. “New collaborations drop with little notice and are only available to shop for 30 hours,” said the Los Angeles-based model. “Clothes are made on demand once orders are placed so fabric and material are never wasted! My collection consists of great statement staple pieces that can be for all seasons. (They’re) made to be forever in your closet and wardrobe rotation. Since I travel often, I like to travel light, so staples that can be styled multiple ways are a win for me.” Li stays in touch with fans on Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/catieli/).