Places I Remember with Lea Lane

100th Episode (Part 2): Memories From King Tut's Tomb To A Russian Jet Chase

December 19, 2023 Host Lea Lane guides us through the best of our guests' special memories throughout 100 episodes. Season 1 Episode 100
Places I Remember with Lea Lane
100th Episode (Part 2): Memories From King Tut's Tomb To A Russian Jet Chase
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Part Two of our 100th episode transports you across the globe, to explore memorable adventures, as shared by our remarkable guests: from the rich culture of Guatemala; the allure of Scotland; the intrigue of a hidden Rembrandt during World War II in the Netherlands; to Panamanians, who embrace the elderly.

We journey from Ecuador's steam trains and the sandy beaches of the British Virgin Islands to the speed of Shanghai's trains and the tranquility of Tianjin Park, China. We share little-known facts about Jamestown, Virginia, and Madrid.  Patricia Schultz, author of A Thousand Places to See Before You Die, shares a special trip to Machu Picchu.

Master architect, Tim Peck joins us from Mozambique, there's a heli-skiing trip in Whistler to remember, and a refreshing hike to a waterfall in Dominica. Prepare for a moment in Egypt at King Tut's tomb, a Russian MiG jet chase, a visit to a modern replica of Noah's Ark, and a sacred experience during a massive bird migration.

This two-part 100th episode is about more than just sharing incredible stories; it's a testament to the transformative power of travel, and the memories we create along the way.
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Suggestion: Take down the episode numbers of any of the tales you especially enjoy, to hear the full stories.
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Podcast host Lea Lane blogs at forbes.com, has traveled to over 100 countries, and  has written nine books, including the award-winning Places I Remember  (Kirkus Reviews star rating, and  'one of the top 100 Indie books of  the year). She has contributed to many guidebooks and has written thousands of travel articles.

Contact Lea- she loves hearing from you! 
@lealane on Twitter; PlacesIRememberLeaLane on Insta; Places I Remember with Lea Lane on Facebook; Website: placesirememberlealane.com

New episodes drop on the first Tuesday of the month, wherever you listen. Please consider sharing, following, rating and reviewing this award-winning travel podcast.



Lea Lane:

Here's the second of the two sections of our best memories from Places. I Remember, Episode 100. Wow, enjoy. Sandra Smith, who sailed solo in the Pacific, was adventurous on land as well as water. She explains in episode 54.

Speaker 2:

So I was at the airport I got a reservation to get up to Mexico to get my boat and these ladies behind me were talking about this place, Antigua, and Guatemala, and it sounded so wonderful. They said no, there's artists everywhere. So I quickly ran up to the desk and changed my ticket and flew to Guatemala City to go to this Antigua. And I got a ticket that I would go there today, Friday, and leave Sunday and go up to Mexico City. But when I got there the US government hands American three single-space type written pages. It says guidelines for US travel in Guatemala and all three pages is don't do this, don't go climbing the volcanoes, blah, blah, blah. Don't hear go, blah, blah. And I scratched that up because I said I'll never know Guatemala if I follow this rule. And I changed guidelines to guidebook and I promised Guatemala you know in my heart that I would not leave until I'd done everything. On the three pages.

Lea Lane:

So how long did i t?

Speaker 2:

It took me six months. Oh, my goodness.

Lea Lane:

You did it, you did it. I'm so proud of you.

Speaker 2:

Anyway, my daughter even came down and climbed some volcano with me and we were getting so exhausted. I saw a man with a white horse collecting wood and I ran up to him can I borrow your s please, I'm tired? And he said sure, and he let us. We both rode off on a white horse to the top of the volcano, oh, that's a beautiful image.

Lea Lane:

Bruce and Rona, brother and sister, share memories of Scotland. On episode 55.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I just feel really fortunate. Where I live like I think he's low the N has so much to offer, like the beaches. There's two volcanic plugs you can climb to the top off. So there's one that's called Capri law and there's one that's called North Berwick law and for me, just like climbing to the top of them and looking across the Firth of Forth and being able to look out towards the bash rock as well. It's just really lovely that in the cheese and just being active like a love being active like you can do paddle boarding at the beach, you can do horse riding on the beach. There's just so much to do that I just feel so lucky to have the opportunity to do those things. Bruce, what about you?

Speaker 4:

Yeah, I'll go more w. So one of the things in Edinburgh that we haven't talked about is the Scott monument, which is to celebrate Walter Scott. So this is a kind of weird shaped spaceship looking monument that you can climb up in the inside or at least you could. I'm assuming you still can. But anyway, my memory is of climbing up that with our grandmother and you get right to the top, and when you're right at the top of them, you're literally squashed in this spiral staircase to get to the top, and when you get up, you're right in the center of Edinburgh, but you're able to look down and see all the people looking like ants on the bottom, and then you can see all of the views all around. And it's, I think, because any time you're in Edinburgh you can see that monument. When I think of Edinburgh, that's what I think of, and then I think of climbing it with my grandmother as well, and so it's the Scott monument.

Lea Lane:

In episode 56, our guest remembers a national art treasure hidden in the Netherlands in World War II by her grandfather.

Speaker 5:

If I'm thinking about special, I'm thinking about my grandfather in the war, World War II, yes, and he was a truck driver. He had his own truck, so he would drive around and help people with whatever moving. And he was asked to help the Night Watch To (the famous Rembrandt painting). Yes, yes, to put it in his car and drive to the dunes here in Castricum, which is a little town next to the sea, and in here we got bunkers and that's where the Night Watch was stored away for the Germans, so it would be kept for the Dutch.

Lea Lane:

So he drove the Night Watch to the. I mean, I have heard about the fact that they had to take it out and protect it and how fabulous it was when it came back and what a ceremony and I can only imagine that's one of your great treasures of your country. So, wow, that's quite a memory.

Speaker 5:

There is a small bunker here in the dunes and there is a little plaque stating there on the side that this was the bunker that the Night Watch was stored. In a way, it's very famous story.

Lea Lane:

People are often the keys to a memory, as in this from episode 57.

Speaker 6:

For me, a lot of it boils down to the people. Sure, the internet is great and I can do my work as a writer from here, but it's the people. And my dad was living here until he passed away in 2013. And you know, I've been to countries where there's maybe a little bit more impatience with people as they get older rather than respect, whereas here in Panama, what we encountered a lot of the time was just really respect or compassion. Supermarket cashiers would remember my dad and he was the last dinosaur insisting on paying for things with paper checks and taking forever in line and people waiting behind him. And they remembered him and got to know him and they would ask him how he was. And one day he was out. I wasn't with him, he was at a bank and he got dizzy and passed out. You know the people. They sat with him. They found my number in his phone. They called me. They stayed with him until the ambulance came to take him to the hospital. They went to the hospital and waited until I got there before leaving. They kind of just left. They didn't take anything from me, didn't want to accept anything. Called me the next day to ask how is our Mr Ramesh Wow?

Speaker 7:

he d ?

Speaker 6:

That's the kind of person that, and of course, not everyone's perfect, but that's just overwhelmingly what I've encountered here.

Lea Lane:

Walking with a sibling by a waterfall in the Pacific Northwest leads to a moving moment in episode 58.

Speaker 8:

One of my most special memories was when I was in Portland and I went out to the falls that I mentioned earlier Multnomah Falls, where there's this stepping down of the water, and I went down to the base. There's this huge area that nature has eroded away and there's rocks that have been worn smooth all over and it's very dangerous goings. But I went out with my brother and we got really close and the closer we got to the falls, the more the spray and the pressure off of it. And we stayed there for a few minutes and when we took the trail and got back to our car, we didn't talk the entire time and when we finally got back to the car he said how do you feel right now, how do you feel in this moment? And I said if someone said it was my time to leave here and I had to go, it would be okay. I felt so at peace in a way that I just have never experienced.

Lea Lane:

Annabella George has traveled both in luxury and on a budget. Here's a vivid memory of the latter in episode 59.

Speaker 9:

I had met these other friends staying in Quito Ecuador, and we decided to take this trip on steam trains. We sat on top and all these kids joined us and these shoe shine boys, and we had a wonderful time with them and kind of at the end they were all sleeping on our laps and cuddling them and even though I was wearing tivas, I had them shine my shoes anyway.

Lea Lane:

I just think about ducking under the tunnel. That's the thing that would scare me.

Speaker 9:

You have to keep it right in the hand. That was very concerning.

Lea Lane:

Yep, one especially beautiful beach of the British Virgin Islands, is remembered in episode 60.

Speaker 10:

You can crawl through these boulders and there's wonderful seapools and grottos. I've heard many stories about how the b were formed. I like to tell people that, just to get an idea of what it looks like. E if we had thousand foot giants and the boulders were legos and they just made caves with them on the beach, There's an area that we call the cathedral, and the reason why we call it the cathedral is because the boulders shoot up hundreds of feet and it has a cathedral feel inside of it. Especially when the sun is up, the sun peeks through the boulders into the waters.

Lea Lane:

In episode 61, I remember many train trips that I've taken throughout the world. I have some glimpses in my mind of some of the train trips I've taken. Some of them are on tiny little trains, little cogwheel trains. I went up in the cloud forest in Costa Rica. I've been up to the Jungfrau in Switzerland. I took steam engines along the Rhône and France and in Wales I've gone through the channel. You know the train that takes you from London to Paris. That's an experience. You have lunch and you're in Paris. It's a wonderful trip. I've been in the Grand Canyon where a train was set up where a gunfight ensued. They had the outlaws come onto the train and it was a lot of fun. It was like a story. I've been on the bullet train in Japan, where you speed by Mount Fuji, and I've been on a train in Shanghai called the Maglev, where you go 433 kilometers an hour. It's amazing. It's the fastest train I've ever been on. You tilt to the side and it's quite exciting. Sometimes a park can change a life, as we see in episode 63.

Speaker 11:

I remember in one park when we were in Tianjin, the wetland park we spoke with an elderly gentleman about his experiences and what he thought of the park. And he was talking about how he remembers when it was the despoiled urban landfill and I saw and now it's been transformed into this amazing space and that he actually takes a two hour long bus ride just to go to the park weekly. And it was really like kind of touching to hear. And I think in that same visit we met a grandmother with her granddaughter who was thrilled with the park, loved to go see the wildlife, the geese, and she grabbed my hand and tried to drag me to see the geese and things like this too. I mean, she was really charming.

Lea Lane:

She learned surprising things on our podcast In episode 64. You'll hear something you didn't expect about Jamestown, Virginia.

Speaker 12:

I went to Historic Jamestown again after many years when I took this role on is that the early times for these English settlers were really challenging. I mean, at one point more than half of the settlement was doubt by disease and hunger, and so this group, out of desperation, turned to cannibalism.

Lea Lane:

Really, yes. You never hear that in the history books.

Speaker 12:

No, no. And they found in the course of doing these archaeological digs the remains of a young girl who they traced back to a certain area in England based on what was found in her bones from nutrition. So back then it was well, if you were from this area of England then you ate this kind of diet, and so they're able to trace that back. Out of severe desperation, this was discovered that this settlement had at one point turned to cannibalism just to survive.

Lea Lane:

We have two very different memories from two residents of Madrid in episode 65.

Speaker 13:

I was here when my family left Cuba in 1967. Franco was in power at the time, dictator Francisco Franco. It was a very different city and yet to me as a small child coming out of communist Cuba, it seemed wonderful because there was all kinds of candy and ham and wonderful things to eat and that we didn't get in Cuba at the time. I remember things like that were the serenos, which were these gentlemen who stood on the corners at night with a big bunch of keys dangling off their pant loop and if you came in after a certain hour, back to your building, you would have to clap your hands and they would come and open the door for you. And these are things that even young Spaniards don't remember, because what they were doing actually was they were also kind of keeping an eye on the population. It was part of being a police state.

Speaker 14:

Right.

Speaker 13:

But these were generally like retired police or whatever. Who took these jobs to open the? Doors at night and also to provide assistance and work among whatever was done, but it's just a very interesting memory of a world that no longer is and yet is still in the grid.

Lea Lane:

Fabulous memory. Thank you for that.

Speaker 13:

You're welcome.

Lea Lane:

Okay, David.

Speaker 15:

Mine is a lot more recent. I have a lot of nice memories associated with Madrid, but the most dramatic perhaps occurred in January of 2021, when the city was buried under the biggest snowstorm in a century, and it was called Filomena -- three and a half feet of snow, and normally Madrid gets a few flakes here and there. They don't even stick. Oh, look a little, you know a little flurry how exotic. But this sort of threw everyone into a tizzy. It was fun for the first couple of days. People were sledding and skiing down the streets. Snowball fights, Snowball fights, Epic snowball fights across Gran Vía you know between the kids. And you really had to watch out.

Lea Lane:

In episode 70, we talked with hotel managers about their memories. Here's a good one. Do people bring cats? I always wondered. I never bring a cat and I never hear about that. I know they don't like to travel.

Speaker 16:

They do. They do, but they're not as they're not as popular, and in our case we did draw a line on the weight of the pet, whether it's a dog or a cat and you know no exotic pets like big parrots or snakes, things like that. We don't, we don't accept.

Lea Lane:

The rest of you as well. Yeah, yeah.

Speaker 17:

The best are celebrity pets, (oh please tell us). Celebrity pets are my favorite. We had a guest, and dog's name was Audrey, and when the handler would call down room service, they would act as if the dog was the actual guest or a child. So Audrey will be dining at three o'clock this afternoon. She would like organic boiled chicken cubes and she got it, and she got it, and she got it, served on a room service tray, and that's how she dined each day.

Lea Lane:

In episode 73, master architect Tim Peck describes a memory in Mozambique, Africa.

Speaker 18:

I went out to Bermisi I don't know if you've been there which is an island in northern Mozambique. We arrived there and landed on this dirt airstrip in the middle of a l little local village and I was met at the end of the runway by a few of the local villagers and obviously we're in a little plane, you know, eight-seater or 10-seater. They met us at the end of the runway and, you know, picked up our suitcases and put them on their shoulder and kind of walked off into the sea. Oh really, and I thought, ok, this is a little bizarre. And then just tucked around the corner, about 25, 30 yards offshore, was a boat and so we had to roll up our trousers, take off our shoes, roll up our trousers and walk off into the sea up to the boat. And that took us down the island to this beautiful luxury, very, very small, very boutique resort which we were looking at to help them redevelop and things. So you had the reverse experience then, where the people up next to the beach you, the guys shut the suitcase back on their shoulders, disappeared off up the beach and you rolled up your trousers and they did offer to carry us, but I felt that Helicopter skiing provides a special memory in episode 74.

Speaker 19:

For me. I alluded to it earlier. So a couple of years ago I had the privilege of being a Whistler Black home with a group and one day that surprised us with a trip in the Heli. So we took about an hour van ride to find the helicopter. So it was staged very far from the mountain. It had not snowed in Whistler in about three weeks but it had been unusually cold. So when we got in the Heli we went up, and the guy decided to go to a location that was another 40 minute flight from where we found the helicopter, because they hadn't been there in years. They had done so much powder skiing recently that they needed to go a little further out to find o track snow and they were hopeful that because it had been so cold for so long that the snow would be good. I can tell you eight lift rides in the helicopter later our day was done. They had to change our guide out after six runs because she could no longer keep up with us and needed to tap out, because normal day is six helicopter rides. And to this date the group I went with and I look at the pictures speak of the memories and talk about recreating it, and it's one of those things. No trip will ever be as good as that one. It'll be good in some different way. It was my first time doing the heli skiing and I can't wait to take my kids in a similar experience before my body gives out.

Lea Lane:

Here's a vivid memory from the Caribbean island of Dominica in episode 77.

Speaker 20:

One of my favorites is Middle Ham falls, which is a waterfall, one of the many waterfalls on Dominica, and I normally say to people it's about a 45 minute hike up and back. And you hike up and to it, you traverse down amongst the rocks and you get into the water. You scream like a little kid because it's so cold, but after a minute you don't want to get out. And then when you do get out and you walk the 45 minutes back, you hardly sweat because your body has just been cooled down so wonderfully. And so I always tell people about that story because it just amazed me when it happened to me. I want everybody to experience that.

Lea Lane:

In episode 78, Patricia Schultz, author of the blockbuster book A Thousand Places to See Before you Die, shows a terrific memory.

Speaker 21:

But for my birthday I always do make it a point to give myself the gift of travel. And on my big birthdays, on my 50th, which already was almost 20 years ago, I decided it was time to see Machu Picchu, because it's not an easy trip.

Lea Lane:

N I've been there and you're right, it is not an easy trip.

Speaker 21:

Oh, and if you do your homework and you make all the arrangements totally doable, and oh, is it worth every effort in the book and every penny. But I do remember not having done quite enough research. I knew that Cusco, up in the Andes, which is your launch, your starting point to, at 11,000 feet right, then take that zigzag train down to Machu Picchu, which is a mere 7,000 feet. But I remember thinking, oh, I've been to Denver, I've got this altitude thing, I'm going to be just fine. But guess what? I wasn't. I didn't bring altitude pills, sickness pills, with me which are very easy to come by. You just call your doctor and prescription and there you go. But I was in the lobby of my very nice hotel in Cusco with an oxygen tank and a mask, thanks to the very sympathetic manager of the hotel, and I met this lovely, lovely woman who came sauntering over. I guess she felt you know it was a feeling pity or you know, compassion for me, I don't know. It turns out she was American, she was one of the nicest. I mean, imagine this 20 years later and I still remember it like it was yesterday. She was totally fine, no problem at all with the altitude. She was there celebrating her 90th birthday. It was her first passport, it was her first stamp, it was her 70th wedding anniversary o upstairs resting because he too was having a problem with the altitude and she went off into this monologue because I had an oxygen mask. She told me about how she'd always just wanted to travel. She dropped out of school when she was 12, she raised five children. African American said she was proud to be a washerwoman. For all of those years she put her kids through high school, college, graduate school, and for her 90th they got together and sent her any place in the world that she wanted to go and they had given her a book and it was called 1000 Places to See and she could have any place she wanted. And I guess they were thinking, oh, you know, like Boca or Las Vegas, but no, she wanted to go to Machu Picchu. And she said to me these two things and they're pearls for me and I will forever remember them. And she said you know, dear, your knees have expiration dates. And she said you have to do the difficult places first.

Lea Lane:

Here's a lovely memory of Rome from episode 79.

Speaker 22:

My mother was Roman, as I mentioned, and when we lived there in the mid 60s, one day she took us to the Vatican and I found that kind of daunting and creepy. We went down into the crypt and that's another thing you can do if you want creepy things, go into crypts. They're all over them. But then she said okay, we're going up onto the Giannicole. The Giannicole is called the geniculum in English. So she took us up the back way from the Vatican and said don't look back, just keep climbing. And we climbed and climbed and we got up to the top of the hill and then she said now turn around. And we turned around and there was this unbelievable view of Michelangelo's dome, of St Peter's, framed by parasol pines. And even as a six or seven year old, whatever I was, was, I got the heebie-jeebies. So that's one thing I like to do when I'm Rome, Rome and I take friends and when I do lead tours in Rome, I take people up that way and reveal this incredible view. You know, we'll get a better view of the cupola, of that amazing, gigantic church.

Lea Lane:

One of the most thrilling trips of my life was visiting the mountain gorillas in Rwanda. In episode 81, our guest describes his memory of the experience. You know it's a long, long way from anywhere to get to Rwanda. You've got to change planes usually and there's lots of things you have to do along the way take tests for health and all that and you're very happy to finally get to the place. Well, I got very close to the gorillas at the park, where they tell you what to do in terms of how you act and what to expect, and they put the groups together and I was all excited and they tell you, before you go to see the gorillas, to go to the bathroom. So I went to the bathroom. Unfortunately, I got locked in the stall and I couldn't get out and I thought I came all this way halfway around the world and I'm not going to see those gorillas because we're all timed very carefully and I thought they're not going to wait for me. They don't even know I'm in here. Well, luckily somebody came in finally and after that men and women came in to help me out the door and everything. I finally got out. But that was a real lesson. I mean, you can do everything you can think of to be ready, and you never know, but it's still worth it. I still got to see the gorillas and it makes a great story right.

Speaker 23:

They let me out. For me, my strongest memory I have of the gorillas was actually my very, very first time to go and see the gorillas 25 years ago. When I first walked into the clearing, into the forest, I came across a group of gorillas. There was one particular silverback who was there and he stopped what he was doing and he turned around and he stared me straight in the eye And they always say you should never look them in the eye, but I was almost hypnotized and he stared straight at me and he checked me out. He looked me up and down. He was really getting the measure of me in the same way that you do if you walk into a room and you see people. They look at you and it's the first time I realized these guys are intelligent beings. There was something in that look and no other animal I know will look at you in that way. It is astounding and I think about that moment every time I see them. It's just phenomenal.

Lea Lane:

Fun memories of Israel in episode 82. When I was first in Israel in the 1970s, I remember there were very few trees that I noticed. Outside of certain areas there was lots and lots of desert. It is a desert area. So I planted a tree, a little tree and I came back to Israel many, many years later and the hills were forested. There were so many trees, so I planted another one because I saw with my own eyes how that little tree must have grown. I'll never see it, but I know it was there in the forest. So it's a wonderful thing. I think it's an example of people being ahead of their time in terms of climate change and all of that. They realize the importance of trees and greenery. So it's a beautiful thing to see today that the area is filled with beautiful plants it isn't just desert and it shows you how each little tree can make a difference. So I planted two in a span of maybe 50 years and I hope my little tree is growing up. I planted it about 10 years ago. It's probably getting there. What about a memory from you, Dana?

Speaker 24:

What strikes me every time I go to Israel is the juxtaposition of the old and the new in the streets, whether they're the streets of Tel Aviv, more so perhaps in the streets of Jerusalem, the backdrop of the old city against the modern conveniences we all take for granted now. My favorite thing to do in Jerusalem is to sit on the terrace of the King David Hotel and look out over the old city, late afternoon or an evening, and it is the most calming and wonderful moment that I've had in the land of Israel, and I always try to make sure I get there. The other thing I love in Israel are the little restaurants that are tucked away on side streets, that look as if they've been there, and have been there not just for decades, perhaps for centuries, and discovering those little out of the way places Just by wandering down a street you might not have found on a map you might not have known about before, and being adventurous, A travel agent describes flying on the Concorde Concorde in episode 83.

Speaker 25:

We flew from Dulles Airport in Washington to London on British Airways back in the day. It took six hours, which it still does now, but on the Concorde it only took like three and a half. When you take off with it it doesn't take off gradually like a 747 does. It takes up really straight up. If you've ever saw pictures of it, it's got a nose that pops up and down and you actually feel it actually pushes you back into the seat because of the speed. And then, when it finally gets to the altitude, which is about 60,000 feet, which is maybe twice the altitude of a normal aircraft, You can actually see the curvature of the earth. The sky isn't blue anymore. It takes on a purplish tint when the astronauts are up in the space. The sky is black. Well, it goes from light blue to darker blue to at 60,000 feet it's almost purple. And it flies at Mach two and a half, which is two and a half times the speed of sound. And they have a little counter, that digital clock up on the wall. You could watch it tick off until it got to Mach two and a half. You were only at that speed for about an hour.

Lea Lane:

In episode 84,. Here are memories of what makes a trip to the Great Barrier Reef off Australia so special.

Speaker 26:

It is enormous the size of Japan or Italy 3,000 different reefs. There are amazing number of fish there. Still, climate change has been a problem. There were some major bleaching events about 10 years ago and eight years ago and it is an ongoing problem. And if people don't believe in climate change, you know, come to Australia because we have weird weather patterns happening all the time. Is the barrier reef ruined? No, it's not. Will you see amazing things? Yes, you will. Is it full of multi-colored, brilliant coral? No, it's not, but it's not necessarily bleached. I mean healthy coral here. A lot of the healthy coral is brown. When I talk to my guests about what the best parts of the trip has been, nearly always they say the Barrier reef. There are plenty of fish there; turtles, if you're lucky. If you go on a cruise, really normally out of Cairns or Port Douglas I prefer Port Douglas. It's a little bit smaller, a bit more friendly. Cairns is like the gateway to the reef, but if you go on a boat that goes to the same place every day, the snorkeling won't be as good as if you go somewhere a little bit further out and obviously it just depends on the day. But it's extraordinary and definitely worth seeing and still something that's really special for people. I had one lady when she was a bit nervous about snorkeling. We have to wear stinger suits, lycra suits, body suits, because they're poisonous. jellyfish I mean everything in Australia can kill you. You know we're full of poisonous animals and snakes and spiders and things, but I rarely ever see them. They want to avoid people. And one lady was sort of nervous about snorkeling. She came out just glowing and she would have been 80. And she just said I feel young again, Jan, I feel young again. You know, there's so many fish.

Lea Lane:

In episode 86, National Geographic writer Ann Williams describes her amazing moment in Egypt at King Tut's Tomb.

Speaker 27:

It's January 5th 2005. Wow, and the tomb was not well guarded during World War II. The theory is that some people got in and started to pick up the mummy to get at beads. There were mummy experts who looked at these cat scans and thought that one of King Tut's knees looked like it had been broken Not only broken but then healed a little bit after the bone break. King Tut was doing something writing in battle, writing his chariot too fast, you know, upended by a hippo, I mean something and broke his leg. Perhaps infection set in and of course, back in those days there was no penicillin and you got an infection like that and you died. And that's the current thing. Right, it was a thrill to be there that night, be so close to King Tut's mummy. It was always interesting, of course, to work with Dr Hawass, because I had so much time to study up before I wrote that story. I became sort of an amateur expert in all of the stuff in King Tut's Tomb, and some of the things in that tomb are so beautiful I can't even begin to express to you what skill it took to create them. They are just extraordinary, and it's not only the big honking gold stuff that we all know. It's beautiful cosmetic cases, for instance, that were made in the shape of geese, and you know a swimming girl and a grasshopper Just exquisite, exquisite things from that tomb and from that time period. That was the gateway for me. I got fascinated with all that stuff, as Ken Garrett, the photographer, and I say the more you know in ancient Egypt, the more you want to know archaeology is. It's a great jigsaw puzzle, but in ancient Egypt there's so many pieces to the puzzle and we know people's names, we know the names of kings, we know their queens, we know their viziers, we know their children, and suddenly you start to put together this great jigsaw puzzle through time, through space, and it becomes fascinating. So the dig season runs from October to March, otherwise Egypt is pretty hot. Wait for October to roll around. We're always waiting to see what is coming out of the ground so that we can then take that piece and put it in that jigsaw puzzle that we have going in our mind. Fascinating, that's what I do every fall, and the cat-scanning of King Tut was the beginning of all of that.

Lea Lane:

Here's a beautiful moment in Montana on episode 89.

Speaker 14:

I took my daughter, who was four my first born daughter up to the reservation for a powwow On her birthday the last year. I lived in Montana before I came east and it was a beautiful day. I was up there with a friend and her daughter and our kids at one point were invited out to March. There's someone who said you kids want to come? And they went out into the large circle and just circled it and circled it and circled it, stamping their feet, and just as it came to a conclusion and the people in the stands were walking down and joining with the people who'd been marching, it began to snow. It was the 4th of July and it was warm, but coming off the missions, coming out of the east, a set of clouds came over and it just began dropping sparkling little snowflakes on us in the middle of the 4th of July heat it was beautiful, a rain dance, but a snow dance. You suddenly felt like you were in some way physically connected to the tops of those peaks just to the east. There was this sense of that Indian idea of being connected to the world and its capabilities and its processes.

Lea Lane:

Beautiful, beautiful memory. A stunning natural scene is remembered in Costa Rica in episode 90.

Speaker 28:

My memory probably no surprise is the first time I ever saw an Arribata or the sea turtle phenomenon. I'm a marine biologist, though I had studied turtles and worked with turtles in North Carolina where I went to university, and we have just maybe a handful, maybe up to 50 turtles that nest there over an entire nesting season. So I had never actually really worked that closely with turtles on the beach while they were nesting. Our work primarily just was looking at the beach in the mornings looking for track signs of turtles. Having been there, my first nesting event was very special because I came all the way to Ostunau. At the time it was a lot harder to get here. There were fewer bridges, and so after finally arriving in Ostunau, the whole town was very anxious because the turtles were kind of quote unquote late that month they were. They hadn't arrived right when we expected them, and so everyone was concerned or the turtles not coming this month, what's going to happen? And sure enough, finally they arrived and I went out onto the beach at night to help a graduate student who was doing research, and it's pitch black, and all I remember is that I'm trying to look down at my feet to follow her and keep up and we're essentially dodging turtles, and I can feel and hear and smell that there's turtles all around me, but I can't see.

Lea Lane:

I want to ask that it smells.

Speaker 28:

It has very reptilian smell. Let's put it that way. We don't use white lights on the beach because sea turtles are very sensitive to light, so we're using a red light and you cannot see very far or appreciate just how many turtles are on the beach. But we arrived to this river bank where we needed to cross to continue going down the beach, and so, for safety reasons, he quickly grabbed her white light and flashed it across the river so we could see and it, you know, shown on the entire beach ahead of us, and it was I can't think of another way of saying it but that it was swarming with turtles. The same way, if you imagine looking at a beehive, that's what the beach looked like and my jaw just dropped. I was just astounded and I will never forget that moment of you know, even though I was already on the beach. Just finally seeing all of that was just amazing, really, really special experience to witness so much abundance in nature, especially being someone who studies an endangered species you know we're usually lucky if we get to see and work with one turtle A really special moment and obviously, something that changed my life. I decided to stay here and dedicate myself to protecting this place.

Lea Lane:

In episode 91, a flight attendant during the golden age of travel describes a memorable moment in the air.

Speaker 7:

I was leaving London in 1983. We were loading on to this giant bus that they would take us right underneath the airplane and I met the cockpit crew and it was the pilot's last flight, the last flight. He was retiring, his whole family was meeting him in Chicago and we were going over a polar route. That was the shortest time. I said, oh well, this is exciting, I'm taking care of you upstairs, this will be fun. And then I got this sinking feeling that, or what it I mean, something's going to happen. So I just finished. The service started the movie upstairs this was business class upstairs, and the door flew open, the cockpit, which is quite a ways away from the passengers, maybe 1520 feet and they say get in here, kathy, get in here. So I did. They said we just got a call from the government, the Air Force, whoever is monitoring the airspace, and they said there are two Russian MiG jets chasing your plane. Now, this was terrifying because a week before, two Russian MiG jets had shot down a Korean airline 747. I remember going from, I believe, Seattle to Korea. Window shades were down. This was the same situation with our plane. Right now everybody's watching the movie. Window shades were down. He said grab the service manager and go to the back, see if you can see them. And I wanted to say don't you have a rear view mirror? They, they didn't. So I run a football field. Now to get to the back of the plane. I opened this huge window cover on the 747 door. We're looking like crazy and we're on the phone on both sides of the airplane with the pilot. Meanwhile our plane is banking and making a sharp left turn. The military had told the pilots OK, you're going to go to X amount south and they have to turn around. They don't have enough fuel to follow you and get back to their base. So that's what we did. Nothing was said to the passengers. Oh, really, no, no.

Speaker 11:

Nothing.

Speaker 7:

It wasn't even shared with the rest of the crew until we landed. We were two hours late, but his family was there to meet him and they were very happy he was finished. . flight, last flight and his wife said what was the delay? And he just winked at me.

Lea Lane:

Noah's his ark in in Kentucky. Hear this memory in episode 93.

Speaker 29:

OK, well, we were in North Carolina, it was raining, raining, raining and I said, boy, we could use an ark. And someone said, oh, there is one in Williamtown, Kentucky, so we went over there. The ark is two football fields long, it is supposedly the largest timber wood structure in the world and it is three floors. So apparently the other ark was three decks. It is a replica of Noah's Ark. It has everything that the Ark might have had: beautiful baskets, exotic carpets, hammocks. And they do have the animals, but they're outside the Ark.

Speaker 9:

How many?

Speaker 29:

animals.

Speaker 9:

Well, they had all.

Speaker 29:

You know they had kangaroos and just all kinds of things. They were not inside. If they were out, I would say that Noah would not have recognized this Ark. But it was air conditioning, it had Wi-Fi and a gift shop.

Lea Lane:

I like this Ark In episode 95, our final special memory in this Places a I Remember. special collection author Lori Erickson remembers a stunning, moving natural experience.

Speaker 30:

But we haven't talked about this sacred air chapter and which is again one of my favorites. . .For sacred t air. It was a bit of a struggle to try to figure out. Well, how do you talk about sacred air? And then a friend suggested to me that I write about birds, and when I thought of birds I immediately thought Sandhill the sandhill crane migration in central Nebraska along the Platte River every March, during which about a half Sandhill cranes sandhill cranes are there for about four weeks on their way north. They stop in Nebraska and gain weight and eat a lot the rest of their epic journey north. It is amazing bird watching, especially in the morning and in the evening when great flocks of cranes fly overhead to their roosting places in the river. And one experience in particular Bob and I on our last morning we got up early you always have to get up early in order to see the -- and- - and we were perched with our binoculars looking out at the river and a few birds are starting to take off, and then a few more. And then something startled the birds, not clear what, maybe a coyote, or maybe a human moving somewhere, and suddenly it was probably 200,000 cranes. Oh, my, sky all at once within the space of a minute and the sound was overwhelming. It was like a freight train going through my mind. You could just feel the beat of their wings and it was this enormous rush of air a and an elemental power that I mean. Both Bob and I just had tears streaming down our eyes. It was so powerful. It lasted only about a minute. It was a wonderful example, I think, of the ways in which being in nature can be a profoundly spiritual experience if you're open to it.

A compilation of the best Memorable Adventures
Vivid Memories of Travel and Experiences
Russian MiG Jets Chase Airplane
Profound Spiritual Experience in Bird Watching