Top Places to Go in 2009

So it’s 2009 and you’re trying to save up for your next vacation. But even if you conserve funds and eventually can book that trip there’s a burning, unanswered question: Where should we go?

Relax. Here at Storybook Vacations we have you covered. I won’t go into full details, but if you visit this site, you can find the top 29 places to go in 2009. Hopefully, at least one of them will meet your needs.

If you just can’t wait, here’s a recap of the top five destinations you may want to visit:

1) Atlanta

2) Austin

3) Bucks County, PA

4) The Catskills and the Hudson Valley

5) Great Smoky Mountains National Park

One last thought, it’s probably useful to examine at least one destination on this list of the top places to go in 2009 and to review why you should travel there. Let’s look at the top choice, Atlanta. Here’s what MSN.com says make this a unique place:

-Art/Music scene (High Museum of Art: King Tut and Terracotta Army)
-Historical monuments (Civil Rights, Civil War)
-World’s largest aquarium (over 8 million gallons of water!)
-The World of Coca-Cola (Soda from all over the world. Need I say more)
-CNN Studios (This is CNN, studios)
-Great hotels (W Hotel has a property here)

I’ve actually been to Atlanta, and despite the fact I didn’t do all the things mentioned above, I had a great time. So visit Atlanta, or anywhere on this list, if you have the means. It’s definitely one of the top places to go in 2009.

Something for Nothing: Free Rice

A friend of mine pointed this site out to me called Free Rice. It’s basically a word game in which players answer multiple choice questions about the definitions of various terms. Great, you say. But what does that have to do with food? It’s simple: Free Rice donates 10 grains of rice to the United Nations World Food Program for each correct answer.

The best part of Free Rice, is that unlike usual multiple choice quizzes, even if you incorrectly answer the question, you still have the opportunity to try again! I will warn you by saying you may need a dictionary handy to answer some of these questions!

Check out Free Rice today! Give on!

The Wrestler: Another Aronofsky Home Run

Remember 2000’s Requiem for a Dream? Well, the director of that film, Darren Aronofsky, recently released another film called The Wrestler.

The Wrestler, starring Mickey Rourke and Marisa Tomei, is the story of a washed-up, once-famous, pro-wrestler named Randy “The Ram” Robinson. He wrestles on weekends when he’s not pickuping shifts at a supermarket and does pathetic signings which are frequented by 10 people at most. As expected with an Aronofsky film, it is quite depressing but well-made.

Once you adjust to the beat-up condition of Rourke’s face, you begin to appreciate how masterfully shot and acted the film is, and when the credits roll you are left feeling empathetic toward Randy who suffers most of the film. So it’s no surprise that the film one the Golden Lion Award at the 2008 Venice Film Festival.

At any rate, if you haven’t seen The Wrestler, I would highly recommend heading down to your local theater and shelling out $9 or $10. If not for the great story, at least to see Marisa Tomei strut her stuff on the stripper pole.

Joel McHale: Funnier on E!

I just saw Joel McHale at the Lincoln Theater. The show left something to be desired for two reasons: 1) The opening act was better than Joel and 2) It just wasn’t that funny.

Joel McHale is a TV personality that hosts the E! show The Soup, so it was surprising that the South Beach Comedy Festival chose him to do stand-up. He’s definitely witty and humorous at times, but he’s not much of a comedian.

He got some laughs, but mostly I was waiting for the show to end so I could get a bite to eat. I will say that he made a few good jokes about his father being too cheap and about Kim Kardashian.

I suppose the old adage, “you get what you pay for” is fairly accurate.

The moral here is watch Joel McHale on E!, but avoid him at comedy shows.

Chicago: Zip up, It’s cold!

I’ve begun to ponder over whether Chicago will be as cold as expected, or if we will get lucky and the temps will shoot up to the high 30s.

Chicago is known for being cold the same way Idaho is for their spuds. But I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

Have you been to Chicago? Share your experience with me!

Until next time, stay warm!

Don’t Accept Imitators!: StorybookVacations.WordPress.com

Don’t accept imitators! There’s another blog called Storybook Vacations on WordPress with the URL storybookvacations.wordpress.com that is a clone of my site (poorly done at best). The site is a violation of my copyright, and was not produced under my supervision or permission. Don’t visit the site!

Storybookvacations.wordpress.com is merely an attempt to steal my thunder and detract visitors from my blog, the rightful Storybook Vacations.

It is disappointing that imitators would corrupt my concept of a travel blog, but these things do happen. I am confident that if you are a loyal reader you won’t visit storybookvacations.wordpress.com.

Meditate the Day Away, Meditation

In today’s busy world, people eat fast food, have working lunches, bring laptops on vacation, and generally are on the go. But maybe we should stop once in a while to meditate on life. After all, if you don’t stop and smell the roses, you can miss out on great things.

I was supposed to meditate today, but the center I went to was closed. Probably just another victim of the failing economy. I did end up having a great lunch at Miss Yip, so it wasn’t a complete waste.

But I digress. My associate, Cassandra, has written a great post about a newly-opened 39,000 sq ft, meditation center in Tennessee. If you plan to travel to the area, I suggest you check it out.

Read about the new meditation mecca, health, and positive living on her blog, Sweet Regards.

Farewell, Spring Cruise?

It seems unlikely that I will take that spring cruise I mentioned earlier this month. That’s because I am going to Chicago with my girlfriend and will proceed to freeze to death! But perhaps, if I have a good month, I will consider taking a cruise as my second anniversary is coming up, and it could be romantic.

I will of course, keep you posted on these breaking developments.

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Thanks!

Bryan