Florida Spring Break

So, the monkey took off to Florida for Spring Break because, why not? Everyone else goes to Florida at this time of year. Actually it really was Spring Break for #3 Granddaughter and her academic parents so Mr. and Mrs. Kongo jetted across the country to Tampa to spend a week in the Florida sun. Or not. For the first few days the monkeys actually froze their little tutus off. We huddled around a fire, bundled up in sweaters, and wondered why the weather was colder here than home in L.A.  Then it warmed up for the full range of…

Cruise Review: Paul Gauguin

Kongo went on an 11-night Paul Gauguin all-inclusive cruise to the Cook & Society Islands from October 7-18.  This is a review of that cruise.  If you’re considering a cruise in French Polynesia I hope you read on.   Itinerary Kongo did a two-day add on at the beginning of the trip and flew out to Papeete early.  Part of the tour package includes airfare from LAX to Tahiti aboard Air Tahiti Nui, a direct flight that takes about 8 hours.  The first two nights were at the Intercontinental Resort in Papeete and we boarded the ship on the third…

More Moorea Please!

After a two-day sail from the Cook Islands, the Paul Gauguin arrived in Opunohu Bay at the ruggedly beautiful island of Moorea in French Polynesia.  The iconic peak, Bali Hai, dominates the mountainous landscape of the island’s interior and inviting, crystal clear waters in the lagoon provide splendid swimming and snorkeling opportunities. Actually no Polynesian ever named this mountain Bali Hai.  James Mitchener made it up when he wrote Tales of the South Pacific after he was stationed in the New Hebrides Islands during World War II.  The song, Bali Hai, from the Rogers and Hammerstein 1949 musical South Pacific was a…

Viking Ocean Cruise Review — Viking Star

Kongo recently completed a 13-day ocean cruise aboard the Viking Star, the newest addition to the Viking fleet.  The Viking Star represents the company’s first foray into the world of ocean cruising and the monkey was able to take one of the inaugural cruises known as the Mediterranean Odyssey.  This is a review of the cruise.  If you’re a fan of the traditional Viking river cruises and are considering a new experience on their ocean cruise segment, please read on.

Vampires in Paris

Since Kongo arrived in Paris on Thursday he was followed by a troop of young girls (virgins he supposed) with long canine teeth and braces. They were always waiting for him at the hotel entrance, crowding about and pushing. Kongo was embarrassed about all the extra security the hotel had to put on to keep all the little vampires in knee-high boots from crashing inside. They hung around outside the entrance to the hotel just below Kongo’s suite around the clock. Sometimes they got fired up and would chant something akin to an American cheerleading song.  Kongo doesn’t speak French…