Memorial Day weekend used to be the traditional kickoff for summer getaways. But for millions of Americans, going on a vacation or even taking a few days off here and there is a luxury they can ill afford. Among the most developed countries in the world, the United States ranks dead last when it comes to recreation. Unlike in Europe, where paid vacations are the norm and guaranteed by law, employers here are not required to provide such benefits. What’s often not discussed are potential health problems resulting from too little leisure time such as chronic stress and exhaustion.
That travelling can broaden our horizon, both literally and figuratively speaking, is nothing new. As Mark Twain once famously said, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness.” But can it also improve our mental capacities? Scientists in Germany, who conducted a recent study of how our minds respond to new experiences that come with travel and exploration, say yes.
Like most people, I get my animal food products from the supermarket, cleaned and packaged, ready to be cooked in the oven or the frying pan. I’m actually not much of a meat eater, but I like fish and some poultry now and then. I used to go fishing with my kids when they were young, but other than that I had never hunted for my food supply. That changed lately. For the first time in my life I went bird hunting, or as sporting enthusiasts call it, wingshooting. The experience made me appreciate the value of food even more.
Cruises are notorious as vacations where weight gain is almost inevitable. But there are many on-board programs designed for weight loss and fitness.
If you travel by plane over the holidays, there’s a good chance you’ll come back with an unpleasant souvenir, such as a cough, a runny nose or worse. Research has shown that air travelers suffer higher rates of infections than those using other means of transportation. In times of high volume travel, the likelihood of getting sick increases exponentially.
Beijing rivals today’s greatest capitals, on par with Moscow, London and Berlin. For its role as the host of the spectacular 2008 Summer Olympics, the city has been tremendously transformed, reflecting both its past greatness and future potential as the center of an economical superpower and important player in international affairs. While Beijing may not