first time. It was also a pretty good year for running, because even though I didn’t
participate in any races after June, I ran several early in the year, all in
new places thus allowing me to conquer new destinations on my quest to run the
favorite social media site, Instagram. Here’s a look back at my year in travel filtered
A look at the Dome of the Rock above the Western (wailing) Wall in Jerusalem, Israel where I ended the year with a family trip to attend the Bat Mitzvah of a family friend.
market pilgrimage and for a Riga redo since I
was less than impressed the first time I visited the Latvian capital.
might be on to something by naming it one of its top
10 cities in 2014.
Poland was one of the countries I visited for the
first time in 2013. I went to Poznań in the western region of the country and was pleasantly surprised by the vibrant and trendy city –
including these brightly colored buildings in the city center – and the friendliness of the people.
During our annual visit to my native California, I thought it would be fun to revisit
my childhood history with the little ladies and took them to some of the places
I went to when I was a kid,
in the summer time when I went to Seville in July, a city known for having the
hottest summer in continental Europe. It was hot, for sure, so visits to the the city’s sights and landmarks such as the Plaza de Espana was
best done during the mornings and evenings, while the hottest part of the day was
the perfect opportunity to take a cue from the locals and have a leisurely
lunch, Tinto de Verano and a siesta.
sun in Iceland – the land of fire and ice – on the longest day of the year was definitely a
great way to kick off summer.
And then there was the Midnight Sun Run, which also proved to be a memorable experience.
former fortress located in the center of Gothenburg, Sweden. This was my first
time in Sweden and in addition to taking in Gothenburg, I ran the
Göteborgsvarvet, the world’s largest half-marathon.
little ladies’ spring break coincided with the date for Rock ‘n Roll Madrid, thus providing the perfect opportunity to get another Spain fix. After this trip
Madrid was added to the list – along with Barcelona and Valencia – of Spanish
cities I’m enamored with thanks to great food, wonderful
culture and lovely little spots like Plaza Mayor, the beautiful plaza with original covered walkways, the incredible architecture located in the heart of Madrid.
marathon running retirement (temporarily), I went to Israel for the first time
to participate in the Jerusalem Marathon. The hilly course was extremely
challenging, but as a Christian, having the opportunity to run on “holy ground”
proved to be more emotional than I anticipated.
I also enjoyed the people watching in Jerusalem. To see so many people who have traveled to Israel to walk where there the religious ancestors walked was very moving.
Amsterdam with the city commemorating several anniversaries, including the 400th
anniversary of its canal ring, 175 years of the Artis Royal Zoo and 125 years
of the Concertgebouw and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
I probably spent more time in Amsterdam in 2013 than I have since I’ve lived in Holland. It was fun playing tourist in my own backyard, taking a canal cruise, going to the Scheepvaartmuseum
and the newly renovated Rijksmuseum. I definitely have to do that more in 2014.
The year started with a trip to the magical Marrakesh where I ran a half marathon. The sound of the melodic adhan ringing from the
minarets, the cacophony of the souk, the beautiful rose-tinted buildings had me
mesmerized from the start.
One of my favorite images from this trip is of the church tower standing next to the minaret, giving me hope that maybe we can all just get along.