Virtual Vacation swap questionnaire

1. If you could visit any state in the United States, which would it be and why? Believe it or not, I have actually visited all fifty U.S. states. Some of them aren’t on my “must revisit soon” list, and some of them are. If I had to choose just one, though, I’d say Oregon. Hands-down, it’s my favorite state: the Coast Range and ocean on the west, the Cascades a bit inland, the high desert of the east (I have very fond memories of a solo camping trip to Gearhart Mountain Wilderness), Crater Lake, the Columbia River Gorge, progressive politics–what’s not to like?

2. If you could visit any country in the world (other than your own), which would it be and why? I’ve done some international traveling, but most of it’s been in Europe. One place I’d love to visit is Australia, where one of my best friends lives. We’ve been pen pals (mostly of the pen-and-paper type, though there have been a few periods during which we communicated predominantly by e-mail) for fourteen and a half years–and we’ve never met. We’ve talked on the phone only once, and that was maybe twelve years ago, when she was preparing to leave her native Quebec to move to Australia. It would be a delight to meet her in person and see some of the wondrous sites in Australia. And while I’m in the neighborhood of course I’d have to visit New Zealand, ’cause of all the Lord of the Rings stuff–and the wool. But I’d stay far, far away from these sheep.

3. Have you ever driven across several states/providence/countries? I have driven across the United States three times, twice by myself. I love it, especially the parts out west. It’s great to have a fun destination, but half the fun of going somewhere is the getting there. (By car, at least. By plane, with all of the airline security and getting to the airport a gazillion hours before a flight–well, that’s another story.)

4. Have you ever visited someplace you consider exotic? Where was it? Pretty much any place where I don’t speak the local language is “exotic” to me. So that means all the countries in Europe that don’t speak English or French, and definitely Taiwan. Places like Alaska also seem “exotic” because they are so far off the beaten path. Sure, they have mega grocery stores up there, too, but when you think about how far stuff had to travel to get there–and when you venture outside the big cities–you get a real sense of perspective.

5. What was your favorite “travel” vacation? Why? A few years ago, after a week in the Netherlands visiting relatives, my husband and I took a train to Paris and spent eight days there. I had been there before, but he hadn’t, and it was so delightful to introduce him to one of my favorite cities. Rather than stay in a hotel, we rented an efficiency apartment with a kitchen, so we shopped at the outdoor markets every day and prepared our own meals with the amazing produce, cheese, bread, and wine we found. Every day we stopped at a patisserie on the way home and bought two different pastries for dessert; some days we bought a few more, so by the end of our stay we had sampled twenty different ones. (Yum.) Because there was a metro strike most of the time we were there, we walked. A lot. Fortunately, our apartment was one block from Les Invalides, and the weather was delightful. We took our time, didn’t try to see all of the sights in one visit, and just enjoyed being in Paris in the spring.

6. Have you ever played tourist in your own home city/state (if international, country)? Explain. Absolutely! Where I live now (Philadelphia suburbs) is not at all where I grew up (southern Illinois); same deal for my husband. So any family (and many friends) who visit us–from Illinois, upstate New York, the Netherlands–are out-of-towners. We love to show them around our favorite places here!

7. Are you a museum visitor, beach comber, or amusement seeker? Definitely a museum visitor, with a dash of amusement seeker. I like the rocky beaches of the northwest coast, but sandy beaches don’t do much for me.

8. What’s your favorite type of yarn? Wool tops my list, with most other natural fibers in a tie for second. My favorite yarn that I’ve ever used is Debbie Bliss’s Baby Cashmerino–that stuff is heavenly.

9. What’s your least favorite type of yarn? Acrylic. And novelty yarn.

10. What items do you like to knit/crochet? I love to knit baby/toddler sweaters, but I’m hatching plans to knit something for myself (gasp!) in the not-too-distant future (see my list under the “Creativity” link at the top of the page).

11. What do you pack knit/crochet-wise when you go on vacation? I usually bring about three projects (one of which is generally a sock, now that I’ve finally learned how to knit them), with the yarn and needles required for each. It stinks to complete a project, still be in the mood to knit, and have nothing to work on. Then again, that does make a good reason to explore the local yarn store…

12. What other crafts do you do/would like to do other than knit/crochet? I love photography, and I’m learning how to sew (thanks to Lotta Jansdotter’s Simple Sewing and to my friend Gina, who gave me her old sewing machine).

13. Are you allergic to anything (yarnwise or treatwise)? No allergies, but I am vegetarian (of the “eggs and dairy are okay” type). So that rules out gummi-anything, Altoids, and any other candies that contain gelatin. Also on my no-no list is the new Tofutsies yarn, which I’d be delighted to try if it didn’t contain chitin (shrimp and crab shells).

14. What is your favorite color? Least favorite? My favorite colors are muted earth tones, particularly browns and greens, though a nice red isn’t bad, either. I am not keen on pastels, neons, or super-bright colors.

15. Sweet or savory (treat, not personality)? Sweet!

16. Anything else we are forgetting to ask that you think your partner desperately needs to know? Nothing comes to mind at the moment, but please feel free to ask me if you have any questions!

One Response to “Virtual Vacation swap questionnaire”

  1. Sharonon 15 Jun 2007 at 4:35 pm

    I LOVE playing tourist in downtown Philly. I can’t wait till my girls are just a tad bit older and the youngest listens a tad bit better so we we can start all over again! philly is so full of history and culture and it never gets boring. Actually I plan on taking my oldest to the Mann Music Center this summer.