US Travel Tips for International Travelers Gay and Non Gay

gay international travelers travelors

When ever you go to a country for the first time, it helps to be aware of local customs and practices, so you don’t look like a total fool!

THRILLIST  put together a great list of tips this week,  for the international traveler coming to the US.

Everything from tipping to ice to how to handle police!   It’s very cute – check it out!

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Big Gay Party in Paris! The GAY Marvellous Island Festival

 

gay paris lgbt event marvellous island

 

WE party, PAPA, La Nuit des Follivores / Crazyvores, Code 69, Cockorico, Mauvais Goût et SALE!

present the second edition of…

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THE GAY MARVELLOUS ISLAND FESTIVAL

SATURDAY, MAY 10th 2014
From 5pm to 6am

SAMEDI 10 MAI 2014
de 17h00 à 06h00

The biggest Outdoor and Indoor Festival of Paris is back!!! for a second edition full of surprises!

Like last year the full saturday will be dedicate to the Gay community! United for an unique and impressive « all day and night » event, some of the most important promoters of the gay scene will rock the Marvelous Island Festival and go crazy on stage with performance, Incredible 3D light effects, mapping giant structures, a fairy tale deco, a fantastic sound system in all the rooms/scenes and of course a BIG CRAZY LINE-UP to satisfy your thirst of dancing… from 5 p.m to 6 a.m … and all this in a Marvelous real Island in Paris !

Le plus grand festival outdoor et indoor de Paris est de retour pour une seconde édition pleine de surprises!!!

Unis pour un impressionnant et inégalable événement, les plus gros promoteurs de la scène gay parisienne investissent le Marvellous Island Festival de 17h à 6h du matin! Des performances folles, un incroyable light show 3D, structures de mapping géantes, une déco hors du commun, un sound system à couper le souffle dans toutes les salles et, bien sûr, un LINE-UP EXPLOSIF pour étancher votre soif de clubbing … Le tout sur une véritable île à Paris !

 

FROM 11PM / À PARTIR DE 23H

—> WE PARTY money: www.wepartyontour.com

During the last year, WE Party has got a great expansion and recognition around the world. WE Party has done parties in most of the European and American cities, taking up residence in the main cities. Besides, WE Party has been in the most important clubs such as MANSION in Miami, PACHA in New York, USHUAÏA and SPACE in Ibiza, CORONET in London, MIX and THE MACHINE DU MOULIN ROUGE in Paris, RAZZMATAZZ in Barcelona, MUCCASSASSINA in Rome, MAGAZZINI in Milan and LA RIVIERA in Madrid among many others.

Music
SEBASTIEN TRIUMPH
MANUEL DE DIEGO
LUIGGI

AMAZING 3D MAPPING WITH QUALITY SOUND SYSTEM D&B

More at Facebook

Slovenia is drawing UK LGBT Honeymooners

Ljubljana-River-Slovenia-Dunja-Wedam

Soca-Gorges-and-cave-in-Slovenia-by-Jesenicnik

Slovenia is among the most wanted wedding and honeymoon destinations for British gays and lesbians – that’s the message from Attitude magazine ahead of same sex marriage being legalized in England and Wales.

Slovenia lies in the heart of Europe, where the Alps meet the Mediterranean and the Pannonian Plain meets the Karst. This small green country measures 20,273 km2 in area, and is home to sincere, hospitable people of great diligence.

As the rainbow flag is raised over Whitehall this weekend to mark the country’s first same-sex marriage ceremonies, English and Welsh gay couples are set to tie the knot from Saturday.  And with the arrival of gay marriage, attention now turns to the best locations for newlywed gay couples.

In the latest edition of the leading gay lifestyle magazine Attitude Slovenia was included among its 25 of the best and most exciting most romantic honeymoon destinations, while capital Ljubljana was named as one of the world’s most beautiful capitals.

Slovenian luxury inbound operator – Imperial Luxury Travel Solutions has seized the moment with a tourist package targeting gay and lesbian couples calledPinkWeek.eu, which was successfully launched recently in London and Berlin (ITB 2014).
Piran-Cape-Slovenia-Ubald-Trnkoczy

The first ever Slovenian tourist package for gays and lesbians and their friends will take place from 4th and 11th May 2014 at various Slovenian tourist spots. PinkWeek.eu guests will have an opportunity to explore Slovenia through several prepared packages and even choose their ideal wedding location. As a part of the programme, Imperial Luxury Travel Solutions will organise on 10th of MayEurosong 2014 themed gala dinner at Ljubljana Castle for guests, visiting LGBT media and PinkWeek.eu partners.

 

- See more at: http://www.travpr.com/pr-28622-slovenia-a-perfect-destination.html#sthash.x0BaaRIw.dpuf

Casinos Around The World

ameristar-casino-luxury

I am really not much of a gambler, but I enjoy the opulence and beauty of so many of the new casinos. And I do like slots!

If you’ve driven the Las Vegas Strip lately, you may have noticed some major construction going on just below the Stratosphere, near the northern end of the Strip.  Which previously has been a neglected area for new construction, but Las Vegas is running out of room!  Eventually downtown and the strip will connect.

There are two major projects here, the first of which is the SLS Las Vegas, a 1,600-room luxury ($400  million  rebuild) casino resort from growing hospitality company sbe. This will be the fourth SLS property in the US (New York, South Beach and LA, while sbe also operates Redbury Hotels and the Raleigh in South Beach).

Macau, one of the hottest new international gambling locations, is known worldwide as “the Monte Carlo of China.” However, don’t expect any draconian rules here – Macau is home to some of the biggest, most exciting casinos and casino hotels in the world. Hotel Lisboa – The Lisbon Hotel in Macau is renowned as a symbol of Macau. It looks like a cross between a Western luxury five-star hotel and a traditional Chinese lantern, all 15+ stories lit up like a beacon in the middle of Macau.

MONACO – Monte Carlo, the Hotel de Paris; Famous for its jet-set lifestyle and magnificent casinos, Monte Carlo is ideal for a high rolling holiday. As for the lodging of choice, none can compare to Hotel de Paris, connected to the Place du Casino by a mere flight of stairs. Despite how popular this opulent hotel has become since it first opened in 1864, it still retains an air of discretion.

So we all kind travel the world this year?! You can still gamble from the comfort of your home. CasinoSpesialisten offers  everything from blackjack to roulette, plus mobile casino for your phone or tabletSo until you can get to Macau or Monaco, stay home and get online!

Gay and Straight Travel – Cities and Countries You Might Get Kidnapped!

countries-to-avoid-kipnapping

GREAT ARTICLE this week at THRILLIST..

7 Countries Where You Are Most

Likely to be Kidnapped!

Gay travel or straight travel!

MEXICO – in Juarez, Tijuana and Tampico – Puerto Vallarta  IS TOTALLY  FINE!

HAITI - very unsafe everywhere.

BRAZIL -Sao Paulo and Rio -  they look for wealthy businessmen and their family members mostly. But I have friends got to both cities, and during big events like Carnival and Pride, they do prey on all tourists to steal from and pick pocket.

Philippines – They watch  for tourists.

India – Foreign and tourist abductions are rare. But they prey on Indian children.

Columbia – avoid rural areas, jungles and mountains – cities are usually OK

Venezuela is now considered the most dangerous country in Latin America

See all of the details  at Thrillist

Gay Pride Around the World 2014

gay-pride-dude

GAY PRIDE IS COMING! Over the next 6 months, gay prides will be happening coast to coast!

PHOENIX PRIDE April 5-6, 2014

MIAMI PRIDE April 11-13

TOKYO PRIDE April 27rh

SAO PAULO PRIDE May 4th, 2014 – the BIGGEST in the WORLD

 

gay pride tel aviv toronto

NEW JERSEY PRIDE June 1st, 2014

LOS ANGELES PRIDE June 6th-8th

MILWAUKEE WI Pride June 6th-8th

CAPITAL PRIDE DC June 6th-8th

DETROIT PRIDE June 7th-8th

HONOLULU PRIDE June 7th

PHILADELPHIA PRIDE June 8th

BOSTON PRIDE June 8th-16th

gay-pride news

KEY WEST PRIDE June 11th-15th 2014

NASHVILLE PRIDE June 12th-14th

SITGES SPAIN PRIDE June 12th-16th

PITTSBURGH PRIDE June 14th-15th

BERLIN PRIDE June 14th-15th

OSLO PRIDE June 20th-29th

HOUSTON GAY PRIDE June 20th-29th

TORONTO PRIDE June 20th-29th – BIGGEST in NORTH AMERICA!
PLUS in 2014, Toronto will actually be WORLD PRIDE with even BIGGER crowds

RHODE ISLAND / PROVIDENCE PRIDE June 21st

NEW YORK CITY PRIDE June 24th-29th

TAMPA FL PRIDE June 27th-29th

PARIS PRIDE June 28th

LONDON PRIDE June 28th

MINNEAPOLIS PRIDE June 28th-29th

CHICAGO PRIDE FEST June 21st – 22nd

(they are trying to fill in the days in between to make a full week of pride)

CHICAGO PRIDE June 29th

SEATTLE GAY PRIDE June 29th

Gay Parade

MADRID PRIDE July 2nd-6th

COLOGNE GERMANY PRIDE July 6th

SAN DIEGO PRIDE July 18th-20th

STOCKHOLM PRIDE July 28th – Aug. 2nd

MONTREAL PRIDE July July 28th-Aug. 3rd

AMSTERDAM PRIDE August 1st-3rd – with floats on the canal!

ANTWERP PRIDE August 4th-11th

REYKJAVIK PRIDE August 5th-10th

CHICAGO MARKET DAYS – August 9th-10th (not really pride – but a big party!)

OTTAWA PRIDE August 15th-24th

PRAGUE PRIDE August 11th-17th

COPENHAGEN PRIDE August 26th-31st

ATLANTA PRIDE August 27th-Sept. 1st

SOUTHERN DECADENCE – August 27th-September 1 (not really pride – but a big party)

LAS VEGAS PRIDE September 2nd-8th

AUSTIN TX PRIDE September 20th

DALLAS PRIDE September 21st

MAUI HAWAII October 4th-5th

gay pride sick deaths hydrate

GAY PRIDE is a time of celebration and with that, usually comes some drinking. MAKE SURE YOU DRINK WATER AS WELL! Keep yourself hydrated! You don’t want to go to the hospital with your boa and go go shorts on! (poor guy!)

AQUA GIRL presents THE LARGEST GAY WOMEN’S CHARITY Event in the Country

aqua girl lesbian event

Aqua Girl® traces its beginnings to the year 1999. That year, Alison Burgos and NYC’s legendary women’s producer, Shescape, gathered a committee of like-minded women from around South Florida to produce an exciting one-night event to benefit breast cancer. The event, Sweet Charity, was an extraordinary dance event bringing together over 800 women and raising over $15,000 for two local breast cancer organizations, Cancer Link and Gilda’s Club.

We can’t believe how time flies. Now in its fourteenth fabulous year, Aqua Girl® continues to attract women from all corners of the country, the Americas and around the globe. The week continues to grow with an ever-expanding variety of events that enhance its appeal and have created what is now the hottest women’s festivals in the country.

As the largest charity women’s week in the country, your participation in Aqua Girl® contributes to a very good cause. In fact, 100% of the proceeds from Aqua Girl® benefit the Aqua Foundation for Women, a not-for-profit foundation whose primary mission is to serve as the funding catalyst for lesbian, bisexual, and transgender wellness and equality in South Florida through grants, scholarships, and initiatives.

AQUA  GIRL

Best Hotels in Chicago Boystown Area

best hotels boystown chicago

Summer is just around the corner! (I think!)  and  summer in Chicago is amazing!

You have got IML and the GRABBY  AWARDS  in May over Memorial Day weekend

PRIDEFEST  will happen   June  22nd  &  23rd, 2014

Pride Day   is  June 29th, 2014

North Halsted Market Days will be August 9th and 10th, 2014

OUT IN THE PARK at Six Flags  will be  September 13th, 2014

SO BOOK YOUR ROOM NOW stay right in Boystown!

Majestic_Sunroom_King_Suite

 BroughtonHotels recently completed renovations on  three historic Chicago boutique hotels, The Majestic Hotel (528 West Brompton), The Willows Hotel (555 West Surf), and City Suites Chicago (933 West Belmont). All have undergone stunning top-to-bottom transformations.

Originally built in the 1920s in Chicago’s Lakeview and Lincoln Park neighborhoods, each property features a renewed grandeur that includes sophisticated new guestroom and lobby furnishings, enhanced lighting, window treatments, linens, carpeting and beautiful custom artwork throughout. iHome docks are now in all guestrooms, and fiber optic internet has been installed in every hotel. California-based design firm AF Canta created the concept for the renovation.

“We are thrilled to introduce a stunning renovation that retains the charm that travelers have embraced at broughtonHotels. We look forward to welcoming guests to ‘live like a local’ and experience a stay in the unique neighborhood settings offered at these three special Chicago properties,” says CEO Larry Broughton.

Willows_Double Queen

The 52-room Majestic Hotel offers the refined tranquility of an old-world English country estate in the midst of the bustling East Lakeview neighborhood. Tucked amidst brownstones in a quiet upscale residential area one block from Lake Michigan, The Majestic Hotel is walking distance to Wrigley Field, minutes from downtown and steps from the eclectic attractions on Broadway, Halsted and Clark Streets. The elegant, re-designed lobby features sparkling Art Deco crystal chandeliers, comfortable furnishings, a wall-length vintage photograph of Wrigley Field on stretched canvas, and an expansive fireplace. The hotel’s guestrooms and suites now feature a color scheme with soothing neutral tones, luxurious new linens and window coverings, soft velvet throws, with plush new carpeting and tasteful wooden furniture. A renovated meetings and event space that can accommodate up to 25 guests provides the perfect setting for showers, parties and small business meetings.

The 55-room Willows Hotel, a storied landmark building that was a regular haunt of Al Capone, is a regal Parisian-inspired gem in the Lincoln Park area. Steps from the shops and restaurants on Clark and Diversey, and only two blocks from Lake Michigan, the Willows Hotel offers an enchanting retreat surrounded by stately Victorian greystone buildings. The highlight of the redesigned lobby is an exquisite fireplace, surrounded by communal gathering tables, rustic French country light fixtures and marble flooring. The redecorated guestrooms and suites include new furniture, carpeting, bed linens, and walls painted in a calming gray hue. The classic décor provides guests with a refined setting for business and leisure travel in one of Chicago’s most desirable neighborhoods.

Willows_Lobby

The 45-room City Suites Chicago is an oasis of comfortable yet refined charm on Belmont Avenue near the nightlife, theaters and restaurants in the Boystown and Wrigleyville areas of Lakeview. The serene lobby is highlighted by neutral décor, a corridor lined with natural wood beams, an expansive fireplace and striking black and white photography. The tastefully redecorated guestrooms and suites offer the ambiance of a hip Chicago apartment and feature chic mid-Century modern touches with stunning light fixtures, black and white linens, new furniture and carpeting. City Suites Chicago is a two-minute walk to the Brown, Purple and Red Lines at the Belmont CTA stop, allowing guests convenient access to all of the attractions in Chicago.

 Book now and get the exclusive BGC 20% off rate!

Majestic Hotel

City Suites Hotel

Willows Hotel

 

About The Majestic Hotel, The Willows and City Suites Chicago

Located in Chicago’s vibrant Lakeview and Lincoln Park neighborhoods, The Majestic Hotel (528 West Brompton), The Willows Hotel (555 West Surf), and City Suites Chicago (933 W Belmont) offer guests luxurious comfort, timeless elegance and classic sophistication with first-class personalized service and amenities. Each broughtonHOTELS Chicago property offers a complimentary continental breakfast, 24-hour tea and coffee from local roaster Uncommon Ground, afternoon cookies, free wireless internet access, iHome docks in all guestrooms, luxury robes, and complimentary access to nearby upscale fitness centers.

 

About broughtonHotels
Newport Beach, California-based broughtonHOTELS was founded in January 2001 by Larry Broughton. With nearly twenty hotel properties located throughout California and the Chicago area, and an eye on national expansion, the broughtonHOTELS team specializes in creating boutique hotel experiences with a distinctive point-of-view; putting the guest experience first by developing a warm, inviting atmosphere with service being paramount, and appropriate, for each property. Their portfolio of hotel properties continues to grow with an emphasis on the human component of the hospitality industry and not just the atmosphere and accoutrements of each hotel. To learn more about broughtonHOTELS visit 
www.broughtonHOTELS.com.

Twitter can be your Best Friend when Traveling

airline-twitter-gay-travel

There was a great article recently in Conde Nast Traveler which revealed how TWITTER can be your best friend when traveling.  Take for instance American Airlines.   A consumers luggage was lost. The traveler  was in Quito Ecuador and she could not get assistance from the airport – allegedly they had no lost luggage system.  The traveler tweeted  AA  and  her luggage was located quickly.

Airlines and Hotels DO NOT want bad publicity. And they have discovered that an angry tweet can be very damaging. They want to fix it fast.

Want to switch flights?  Don’t try to call by phone and don’t stand in lines – TWEET the airlines with your request. Most airlines are happy to put you on standby.

Have a dirty hotel room and the front desk says, “Sorry, we are sold out.”  TWEET  photos of the dirty room, and just see how fast they react to make things right!

@AmericanAir

@AVIS

@ChoiceHotels

@DeltaAssist

@HyattConcierge

@Marriott

@SheratonHotels

@United

@WaldorfAstoria

@WHotels

 

 

Bargain Travel in May to Puerto Vallarta

puerto-vallarta-hotels-gay

Sick of winter? I am!

there is still time to get away!  And did you know?  Prices drop in Puerto Vallarta April 22 – May 31st!  $76-$96   at  hotel Mercurio.  And really discounted June 1 – October 31st!  Just  $65-$82.

 

Hotel Mercurio is  Puerto Vallarta’s highest rated Gay Hotel, based on guest reviews (TripAdvisor.com and www.pinkchoice.com ). Known for outstanding and friendly service; exceptional value; gourmet breakfasts; and unbeatable location in the heart of the Gay neighborhood (Zona Romantica). One and a half blocks from the beach, and just a 5-minute walk to the Gay Beach.

Hotel Mercurio. The ambiance of a Bed & Breakfast, and friendly Mexican service that rivals much more expensive accommodations. Clean & comfortable rooms. Safe and secure. Gay owned, Gay staffed, for Gay & Lesbian guests. Hetero-friendly, too. There is no discrimination at Hotel Mercurio.

Hotel Mercurio. 28 rooms include refrigerators, cable television, air conditioning and ceiling fans, in-room safes, and top quality bedding and linens. Free wireless Internet and office center. Free Beach/Pool towel service. Free international calls. Laundry service available. Knowledgeable concierge. No other hotel in Vallarta offers so much for the price.

Hotel Mercurio

Will Bandra Ohm in India Ever get Built?

gay vtravel india

Who knows if this will ever get built!  But what a concept!

Virtually rising 140 meters in the air over Indian ground, the Bandra Ohm Residential Tower was supposedly designed for a location in Mumbai, India. James Law Cybertecture imagined a cluster of highly contemporary spaces inspired by the ripple effect. A rounded outline shapes a magnificent residential building resembling the Ohm (Ω) symbol. Fluid and dynamic spaces were designed to complete this highrise building – stunning undulating glass pools acting as balconies add drama to breathtaking city views. This comes to show that infinity pools can become part of luxury apartment design.

Bandra-Ohm-Tower-by-James-Law

I can not find any updates on this…..does anyone know?

Allegedly, it is  currently under construction in Mumbai, India…..

SPEED PASS with TSA PRE

speed pass tsa pre line

LOVE THIS!  TSA PreCheck!

With the TSA PreCheck program, you’ll get to use a special screening lane with fewer people in it. Plus, you’ll get to keep on your shoes, light outerwear, and belt, and also leave your liquids and laptop in your carry-on. You pay $85 for these privileges, though (good for a five-year membership in the program).

The TSA Pre✓™ application program is a DHS Trusted Traveler program.  TSA began accepting taking TSA Pre✓™ applications on  Dec. 4, 2013. TSA Pre✓™ allows pre-approved, low-risk travelers the opportunity to apply for expedited screening at participating U.S. airports.

 

 

Ukrainians Seek Freedom – Please Share

 

ukraine-uprising-freedom

Ongoing protests known as the Euromaidan have been taking place in Ukraine, with protestors demanding an end to the Ukrainian dictatorship and closer integration with the European Union. This month, clashes between protestors and the government have steeply intensified, and yesterday at least 26 people were killed. The goverment is beating people, calling them “extremists”. All they want is freedom!

The Ukraine also wants to adopt Russia’s rules against gay people.

We want to be free from the politicians who work only for themselves, who are ready to shoot, to beat, to injure people, just for saving their money, just for saving their houses, just to saving their power.

I want these people who are here, who have dignity, who are brave, I want them to lead a normal life. We are civilized people, but our government are barbarians. That’s not a soviet union. We want our courts not to be corrupted. We want to be free.

 

Interspersed with still images and video footage of the violent clashes between protestors and police in Kiev, a young thin white woman, speaking in accented English, speaks directly to the camera.       PLEASE SHARE THIS VIDEO!

Going for Baroque: Rosary Chapel in Puebla’s church of Santo Domingo

rosary chapel pueblo

rosary chaple santo domingo

Santo-Domingo-Rosary-Chapel

OMG!

About 2 hours from Mexico City is The Rosary Chapel (Capilla del Rosario) is one of Mexico’s most famous chapels and is inside the Templo de Santo Domingo situated in the center of the city, at the intersection of 5 de Mayo and 4 Poniente. The Templo de Santo Domingo was built between 1571 and 1611 while the Chapel -  between 1650and 1690. The Chapel is a magnificent example of Mexican Baroque art.

Every inch of the walls, ceiling, pillars and portals is covered with tiles, gold leaf, sculptures and carving. The chapel was built by natives under the instruction of the Spaniards (reflected by many Spanish-style paintings on the walls). At the top of the altar, which is made of wood and gold leaf and surrounded by marble columns sits the Archangel Gabriel. Also famous is the heavenly orchestra of cherubim surrounded by a riot of arabesques.    Read More at Visit Mexico.
Rosary Chapel and Ceiling, Church of Santo Domingo, Puebla, Mexico

puebla-rosary-chapel-dome-holy-spirit-

The Savoys Beaufort Bar London

Beaufort-Bar-October-gay-halloween

The best thing about travel for me, is seeing new and beautiful buildings and design.

london gay travel The-Savoy-main2

If you’re seeking hardcore glamour, you’ll find Deco joy at The Savoy Hotel.

Since it’s major renovation you now have a choice of two shiny bars: American Bar and the Beaufort Bar.(pictured)

A £220 million project in 2012  made sure every corner of the hotel  was restored and refurbished.

Beaufort bar incorporates the hotel’s former cabaret stage (graced by the likes of George Gershwin and Carol Gibbons) as the centrepiece to a theatrical, art deco space, with sumptuous black velvet furnishings and £40,000 of gold leaf on the walls.

Romantic couples might like to opt for the Gilded Cage – two glasses literally served in a bird cage, and containing vodka, mandarin liqueur, yellow Chartreuse, fresh passion fruit and mango with pomegranate foam (£25 per couple) – while groups will be tempted by the four-person champagne punches with names like the Garden Party, Rhapsody in Blue and the Cat’s Meow, served in absinthe fountains and costing £40.
Strand, London WC2R 0EU
www.savoy.co.uk

See more images  on this blog.

london bars

First Class….or Bust!

first class airlines

FIRST CLASS  is nice, I have to admit!  I have been very very fortunate over the years, because I am a writer, I have been gifted first class several  times – and on international flights, its quite amazing to have the space and luxury.

But is it worth it? to pay all the extra money – for most people no. However sometimes you can scoop a first class seat for pennies. Someone recently tweeted that  their economy class fare of $124 originally  and they were able to get first class for just  a $90 upgrade! That is rare, but it can happen.

For me it has nothing to do with status. I enjoy the space, the seats, the comfort, the food, the drinks – it is special.  Airfare Watchdog did a great article about it recently.  Check it out!

 

 

AMSTERDAM Package Deal!

PrideWeek AMS 2014 PIC

CALL DAVE!

1-800-942-1280  or   E-MAIL ME

 

Michael Lucas and Undressing Israel and Tel Aviv

 

UNDRESSING ISRAEL:

GAY MEN IN THE PROMISED LAND

When many people think of Israel, it is often in terms of modern war or ancient religion. And camels! But there is much more to the Jewish state than missiles and prayers.

In his debut as a documentary filmmaker,
adult-film entrepreneur and political columnist Michael Lucas examines a
side of Israel that is too often overlooked: its thriving gay community.

Undressing Israel features interviews with a diverse range of local men, including a gay member of Israel’s parliament, a trainer who
served openly in the army, a young Arab-Israeli journalist, and a pair of dads raising their kids.

Lucas also visits Tel Aviv’s vibrant
nightlife scene—and even attends a same-sex wedding—in this guided tour
of a country that has emerged as a pioneer for gay integration and equality.

TSA Announced Changes for Gay Couples Traveling Together

(CNN) — On his way home from a trip to Colombia,
marriage equality advocate Hunter Carter discovered another way to fight
for his rights.

Carter and husband Cesar
Zapata stepped up to the American Airlines ticket counter in Medellin,
Colombia, expecting to undergo a preflight security screening together,
just like heterosexual married couples.

That didn’t happen, even though the United States Supreme Court struck down part of the Defense of Marriage Act in late June, allowing for some federal recognition of
same-sex marriage rights.

The Transportation Security Administration’s rules had not been updated when the couple
flew home from Colombia on January 18, a story first reported in the
Washington Blade. With the exception of husbands and wives, and parents
and their children younger than 13, airlines flying into the United
States from certain countries have to screen travelers individually
under TSA rules.

That appears to be changing. The TSA is updating its language, an agency spokesman confirmed Thursday.

Travel Can Make Your Brain Happy!

You go to work; make some money; eat some food; interact with friends, family or co-workers; go home; and watch some TV. Nothing particularly bad happens, but you still can not shake a feeling of stress, or worry, or inadequacy, or loneliness. Whether you have a stressful life and need a break to relax, or you are feeling in a rut and could use some mental stimulation, taking a vacation can provide the perfect change of pace your mind needs. Studies have shown that vacations  can help excite your brain and make it “feel happy”  much like exercise does.

A change of scenery will do you good!  When you visit someplace you have not been before, this gives your brain the most  stimulation. Vacationing in the same place year after year might be enjoyable to you, but it will not stimulate your brain as much as seeing something new. Your brain thrives on activities that it considers new. St. Augustine said “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” So you do to want to keep reading the same page, but instead expand your line of vision.

Eating different foods, meeting new people, exploring and finding your way around unfamiliar places, and taking different modes of transportation are all ways that travel makes your brain work and exercise. Travel forces you to think and use skills that remain dormant and boosts your confidence. If you stop pushing yourself to try new things, eventually your world and confidence shrink, and so does your brain.