Tag: Italy

Venus Williams’ new book ‘Come to Win’ gets STRONG assist from travel writer and former black Italy expatriate Kelly E. Carter

I’m TOTALLY proud of my good friend, Delta Sigma Theta sorority sister, and former fellow Italy expatriate Kelly Carter (http://www.kellyecarter.com/), for co-authoring Venus Williams’ FABULOUS new tome, Come To Win: Business Leaders, Artists, Doctors, and Other Visionaries on How Sports Can Help You Top Your Profession (http://www.amazon.com/Come-Win-Business-Visionaries-Profession/dp/0061718254/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1278370645&sr=1-1) (Amistad, $25.99). This incredible new hardback features Venus talking to some of the world’s most impressive folks—from former President Bill Clinton to Four Seasons Hotels founder Isadore Sharp, from Virgin Group’s Sir Richard Branson to global chef extraordinaire Marcus Samuelsson (http://marcussamuelsson.com/)—about how taking part in sports helped drive their success in a host of other fields.

And Kelly should know. A former sportswriter for some of America’s top newspapers, she covered national and international sports for USA Today, the Dallas Morning News, the Orange County Register, and many others. And she’s no stranger to the famous folks’ beat, either, having covered celebrities for People Magazine, USA Today, and other global publications.

A travel writer who’s literally circled the globe (I’ve lost count of how many countries she’s visited), Kelly and I met during our days as fellow sistergirl expats in bella Italia….

Continue 8 Comments July 5, 2010

Want to travel the ‘world’ without leaving the United States? Visit Las Vegas

Times are tough, and even us diehard globetrotters are finding ourselves grounded these days. But there ARE ways to travel the world without leaving the borders of the United States. In a recent post for my “TCW Travel Connection” blog, which I write for a great local monthly magazine called Today’s Chicago Woman (http://www.tcwmag.com), I’ve written about “going global” by sampling fare at ethnic cafes and restaurants, checking out foreign films, soaking up the sounds from other lands, etc.

But surprisingly, you can ALSO take a trip around much of the world by visiting Vegas. YES, Las Vegas. Even this most American of cities offers something for the global traveler in you….

Continue 4 Comments November 12, 2009

Who is your ‘Inner Italian?’ Former Italy dweller and expatriate Kelly Carter celebrates hers

I wrote recently that my friend and former newspaper colleague and friend Sharon Sanders invited me to dish about my “Inner Italian” on her “Simple Italy: Italian Food, Culture, Lifestyle and Travel” blog. Through this blog, Sharon helps her readers understand that ““Even if we don’t live in Italy, Italy lives inside of us.” Reading Sharon’s Q&A interview with me inspired my good friend and fellow Italophile Kelly Carter to take a cobblestoned stroll down her own personal Italian memory lane. She shares it in this Kelly’s Korner post.

Kelly and I met during our days in bella Italia, and obviously the lessons she learned during her amazing two years continue to shape her life on this side of the pond. So for those of you who’ve been pondering a move abroad—or even spending an extended period of time in another country—you’ll probably be ready to quit your job and buy a one-way airplane ticket after reading this piece.

Continue 5 Comments November 8, 2009

UrbanTravelGirl dishes about her ‘Inner Italian’ on 'Simple Italy' blog, a love letter to bella Italia

My former newspaper colleague and friend Sharon Sanders writes a gorgeous, award-winning blog called “Simple Italy: Italian Food, Culture, Lifestyle and Travel.” Years ago, she and I developed a tight bond over our fascination with all things Italian. Today, Sharon—who spent several years living and working in beautiful Florence—was kind enough to feature me and my “Inner Italian” persona in a recent post.

She writes a periodic question-and-answer feature with “wannabe Italians or expatriate Italians –who try to ‘live Italian’ wherever they are.” I would certainly qualify, as I remain obsessed with the place, its food and wine, its beautiful people — the list goes on. So read all about my “Inner Italian” (http://www.simpleitaly.com/the-inner-italian-q-a-maureen-jenkins) and you’ll understand why, as Sharon says, “Even if we don’t live in Italy, Italy lives inside of us.”

Continue 6 Comments October 29, 2009

Say amen, sister: Get a spiritual boost by visiting houses of worship when traveling overseas

I don’t know about you, but I’m often more psyched about going to church on the road than hitting a bunch of must-see museums and boutiques. Although mornings and I have never been friends, when I’m overseas, I make a point of finding an English-speaking service, whether I need to hop on a subway or bus or use my own two feet to get there. I enjoy the religious aspect of worship but for me, it’s also about experiencing local culture in one of its most authentic and expressive ways….

Continue 6 Comments August 16, 2009

Some sisters never more at home than when traveling abroad

Not that I didn’t already know this, but I’m always thrilled to hear about black women out there who, American or other passports in hand, eagerly take off for trips to places where we’re not always sure if there will be lots of other folks who look like “us “when we get there. But we go anyway, and often return home with fresh eyes.

Take American Black Chick in London. We met “virtually” through her fabulous blog of the same name, as she’s finishing up her M.A. dissertation in London this summer and looking for work that will extend her excellent European adventure. Not only do I love her fresh perspective on being a young African-American sister overseas, but admire her fearless spirit, especially when it comes to taking on the world on her own terms. American Black Chick just got back from a two-week jaunt to Italy, Switzerland and Liechtenstein and dished a bit about the trip….

Continue 6 Comments August 11, 2009

Black women traveling abroad: Learn a foreign country’s social mores, customs before you go

At the recent Travel Blog Exchange ’09 conference in Chicago, a fellow blogger and I found ourselves discussing why African-American women—even those with the financial means and interest in traveling abroad—don’t do it more often. I often think about this, as I always feel it would be GREAT to see more sisters when I’m running around Italy or Spain either in a group or solo.

For many of us, it’s fear of the unknown. We don’t speak the language; we don’t know anyone in the country we’d like to visit. But in countless conversations I’ve had with African-American women over the years, it comes down to wondering how we’ll be perceived as black people. Even without realizing it, being black in America—whether dirt-poor, comfortably affluent like “The Cosby Show” Huxtables, or “movin’ on up” like the Jeffersons—means wearing the subconscious burden of potential discrimination on our backs like the latest designer dress….

Continue 22 Comments August 9, 2009

“… with liberty and justice (and affordable health care) for all.”

Finally in America, the decades-long debate over health care is coming to a head. Last night, President Barack Obama hosted a prime-time news conference at the White House, where he delivered his vision on health care and answered reporters’ questions about it.

As someone who’s extensively traveled abroad and marveled at the United States’ apparent unwillingness to make affordable access to medical care available to ALL its people, I’m amazed that so many politicians—and regular citizens—think that providing such care is somehow socialist. Subversive. And against the “American way of life.” Well, if having to choose between buying groceries and paying for prescribed medicine is capitalism at its best, perhaps we need to re-examine our priorities ….

Continue 5 Comments July 23, 2009

Michael Jackson’s lasting gift to black ‘citizens of the world’

As has everyone I know, I’ve been obsessively tuning into print, TV and Internet coverage of the horribly tragic, sad and untimely death of pop icon Michael Jackson. Back in the day, I was a huge Michael fan (before he morphed into someone unrecognizable). I still love his songs, and have found myself mindlessly humming and singing along with “Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’,” “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough,” “The Lady in My Life,” and the telling “Black or White.”

But being a journalist who’s always searching for the sociological meaning and truth behind current events—and goodness knows this is the biggest global one since Barack Obama was elected president of the United States—I see Michael far beyond the off-the-charts performances, fantastically creative music and videos, and even the eccentricities that defined his later years.

Over the past few days, I’ve heard it stated by everyone from the Rev. Al Sharpton to former “CBS Evening News” anchor Dan Rather that Michael Jackson’s most lasting legacy to the world just might be the fact that he was the first African-American artist to achieve true global superstardom without constantly reminding folks he was black. These social critics—and I concur—changed the world by paving the way for global audiences to embrace and accept Chicago Bulls basketball phenom Michael Jordan, multimedia mogul Oprah Winfrey, golf genius Tiger Woods, and President Obama, who has ignited the world’s imagination in a way unlike any politician in my 40-year-old lifetime.

Now you say, what does this have to do with international travel? I say it has EVERYTHING to do with it ….

Continue 2 Comments June 28, 2009

"Obama: Savior of the world… and America?"

“Obama: Savior of the world… and America?” So read the translation from a recent front-page story on a French publication during my time in Paris, the second half of my solo 40th birthday adventure.

This headline may be taking the “hope” message to an extreme, but what a wonderful time to be an American abroad again.

And what a great time to be an AFRICAN-AMERICAN out in the world.

Since the election of Barack Obama, who’ll be the United States’ first president of acknowledged African descent, folks all over the globe certainly see America in a brand-new light. FINALLY, by electing this black man, we lived up to the platitudes and ideals the nation had been claiming for more than 200 years.

Continue 11 Comments January 14, 2009

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