Do I Know You?

Well, that was pretty cool.

Taking a break from sifting through Turkey photos (yes, I know how far behind I am on that), Karen and I went to watch a bike race: the local stop of the Tour of America’s Dairyland.

America's Dairyland bikers

As way-too-fit bikers whizzed by at dizzying speeds, Karen and I walked the perimeter of the course. A fellow spectator made eye contact, smiled, and said hi- then shook her head and said, “Oh wait, I don’t know you.”

Before I could figure out what she meant, she explained: “We’ve never met, but I follow your blog.” Somehow, Sarah stumbled upon Next Stop: World waaaaay back at the beginning of our world tour (perhaps it was the newspaper article?). Today, she officially became the first reader to spot us in a crowd. You know, the kind of thing that happens to Tom Cruise, like, every fifteen seconds.

Isn’t it funny how you can feel a sense of familiarity with someone you’ve never met? Especially through a blog, which is way more personal than, say, seeing Tom Cruise in a movie.

Benny the Polyglot

Like if I bumped into Benny the Irish Polyglot, I’d have the urge to launch into a conversation as if we’re old friends, though I merely follow his blog about how to become fluent in a language in 3 months. (He’s written a book and is on tour, so I may get my chance.)


Simon & ErinOr how about Simon and Erin over at Never Ending Voyage? I was rooting for them as they started their sailing lessons in Malaysia- um, wait, I don’t even know them.




Jodi the Legal NomadAnd Karen keeps me up to date on her “pal” Jodi’s exploits over at Legal Nomads, too.



Anyway, it was great fun chatting with Sarah about world travel and domestic non-travel (we’re in the midst of house shopping, which could fill another blog).

I’d better get some of those Turkey pix posted- we don’t want to disappoint our loyal fans. Thanks for saying hi, Sarah!

Ken, Karen, Sarah


Next Stop: Turkey

May 8, 2014

Turkish Airlines O'Hare

We’d never flown Turkish Airlines before. A few weeks before the flight, I called their Chicago customer service line to confirm our seats. From the ruckus in the background of the conversation, I swear I was connected to a barn somewhere in rural Turkey. “WHAT? MY CONFIRMATION NUMBER? IT’S R… 5… NO, R… R AS IN ROGER…!”

Boarding our flight, however, we felt any lingering concerns melt away. See for yourself.

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The food was luxurious, too, in an airline food sort of way. Chef Karen was intrigued by the onboard chef, or flight attendant in chef’s clothing (he wasn’t cooking anything up there in first class… was he?). At any time during the flight, we could stop by the galley for a beverage or snack.

Thanks to seatback entertainment screens and attentive crew members, the ten-hour flight passed in no time a tolerable amount of time. We basked in the Downton Abbeyesque civility of it all, until we landed in Istanbul. And then this happened.

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What’ll it be, Istanbul? The Earl of Grantham or the unruly mob?

Let’s go see.