par avion | postcards from the virgin islands

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par avion | postcards from the virgin islands

In an era of smart phones with texting and high quality photos, does anyone still send postcards? I find that I often buy them and rarely send them - a problem I might have with all sorts of stationary it seems. What are you interested in sharing with a loved one? Your first-hand sights, an experience, something that reminds you of them?

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Par Avion | postcards from niagara

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Par Avion | postcards from niagara

In honor of Pride Week in multiple cities across the US this week, here are some big gay waterfalls. In their time, these lighted waterfalls were described as "exceeding the sun's brilliance" and "more beautiful than the spray and the sun combined." In this spirit, we'd like to spread the love and light. It matters.

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essentials guide: chicago

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essentials guide: chicago

Chicago is a place that I find myself visiting repeatedly, mostly for work although there’s plenty worth a visit in its own right. I often visit a city with a very loose itinerary of things that I’d like to see or do, but mostly I like to wander to get a feel for the place. So, here’s the beginning of an essentials series because no one really needs every hour planned out.

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heading north | Transcending Language to Make Something Real

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heading north | Transcending Language to Make Something Real

After a lifetime of desk work and meetings, I found myself sweating like crazy in a Dominican Republic factory while the latest pop music blared in the background. It seemed to be an incessant loop of the same songs but they eventually faded away along with the hum of machinery. I was too preoccupied with trying to find the perfect stitch to notice anymore.

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par avion | postcards from havana

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par avion | postcards from havana

I’m curious to see what, if anything, will change in Cuba with the amendment to the travel regulations for US visitors. It seems crazy to think that the whole world has been in on this amazing secret and has America only now become more open to it.

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jaunt | the south in character

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jaunt | the south in character

This last month has been quite a whirlwind as we wrapped up some major home renovations just in time to make a big move down south. 

I’ve lived in the south before but it’s been long enough that I don’t really qualify as a southerner anymore...

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#TravelStories | Round-up

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#TravelStories | Round-up

It’s worth an occasional pause to take stock of where you’ve been and appreciate the ride. One of the main reasons why I started this endeavor was that I wanted to spend more time thinking about travel – the stories involved, the meaning of it, and why it’s important.

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par avion | postcards from the US

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par avion | postcards from the US

"This is the forerunner of a letter some day. We are settled in a house with another family now at the place where you see the cross. I have been working afternoons ever since I came and with getting settled have been very busy. It seems good to be back. Mother is quite pleased. With love to your mother and yourself."

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Jaunt | Packing for the Blue Skies of the Dominican Republic

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Jaunt | Packing for the Blue Skies of the Dominican Republic

The winters in Pittsburgh are a little dark and long (to put it mildly) so I jumped at the opportunity to go to the Dominican Republic for a prototyping trip. The prospect of actually making bags and seeing sunshine was so overwhelmingly exciting that I barely paused to actually think about what I might see and do while there.

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#TravelStories 007 | Lizzy Mangold

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#TravelStories 007 | Lizzy Mangold

This week’s Travel Stories post comes from my dear friend Lizzy Mangold – she was actually my very first volunteer for this column back when I was manually transcribing things. This is indicative of the kind of friend she is – quick to be by your side, ever thoughtful, and always ready to give something a try. 

As a kid she had family in Taiwan so she’s been an adventurer all her life. At age 8, her and her sister lived there for a summer with their uncle and this set the tone for how travel would play a role for the rest of her life.  She said “I had no idea what to expect but just knew it was going to be great, and that’s still my attitude about travel.”

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Par Avion | Postcards from Spain

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Par Avion | Postcards from Spain

Spain is a place that I have explored through the eyes and ears of others more than anywhere else. I have known friends who were from there, lived there, or traveled through. I have not stepped foot on Spanish soil but I feel as though I have. We’ll have to change that.

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Jaunt | Russian Style for the Gilded Comrade

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Jaunt | Russian Style for the Gilded Comrade

This time of year can be a little rough – cold, dark, and snowy – seemingly forever. For the last few years we have had a Russian Winter book club to immerse ourselves in another culture and find ways to embrace our surroundings.

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Par Avion | Postcards from Afar

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Par Avion | Postcards from Afar

Part of what I love about collecting old postcards is reading the notes to loved ones. So often they convey so little in the way of meaningful information. I suppose back in the day they served as a text message might now.

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#TravelStories 006 | Tim Bradley

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#TravelStories 006 | Tim Bradley

The first of our 2016 #Travelstories comes from Tim Bradley. Tim is the consummate ‘guy next door’ who is always friendly (really, always) and willing to help you in a time of need. Whether it’s figuring out a solution to a work crisis or fixing something by hand, he’s always thoughtfully putting a puzzle together. This attitude of curiosity and involvement might go on to explain his never-ending list of hobbies; woodworking, beekeeping, gardening, etc. The willingness to learn new things and put ourselves into new situations are two of the many ways we constantly expand. Tim’s story shows how this can surprise us in our travels. 

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Heading North | 2016: A New Year for New Adventures

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Heading North | 2016: A New Year for New Adventures

For this new year, we hope that you go out and do something supremely uncomfortable - go somewhere unknown or try a new hobby - and push yourself a little further than you thought possible. From experience we can say it is invigorating and enlightening and without a doubt there will be no less of it in 2016!

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The Winter Solstice – Embracing the Coziness of the Season

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The Winter Solstice – Embracing the Coziness of the Season

What unites so many different cultures around this time of year is our connection with nature. Although we rarely acknowledge it, it’s no coincidence that there are so many celebrations and rituals around the winter solstice. It’s a way of marking the passage of time and to recognize that threshold of transition from one thing to the next.

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Par Avion | Postcards from Paris

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Par Avion | Postcards from Paris

Paris and world events have been on my mind, as I’m sure they have been for many lately. It was many years ago that I studied abroad in Paris and it will forever be a special place to me.  It was the first time that I had left the country and not having traveled too much prior to this, it was an exciting and eye-opening foray into understanding the lives of people in different cultures.

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