Traveller letters: Beware, gluttons at the hotel breakfast buffet

WASTE NOT

I was taught as a child to take from the meal table only an amount of food that would be totally eaten. Nothing substantial was to be left on the plate. The waste was disrespectful to the vegetable or animal that gave its life to furnish my meal. This well explains my distress at seeing food that is barely be touched being piled high on plates during multiple runs to the hotel breakfast buffet (Traveller, August 17).

I have heard the excuse that however much food one takes or consumes, the price remains the same; another is that leftover food spread is thrown out anyway at the end of the morning. However I know some restaurants distribute uneaten food to homeless shelters or people who live on the streets. So taking or eating too much from a limitless buffet supplies could deprive sustenance to the hungry and less fortunate. Gluttony beware.

Joseph Ting, Carina, QLD

GOOD DEEDS

In reply to Phillip Sargeant's question (Traveller letters, August 31) asking how many places in the world would have their wallet returned intact - I can say Los Angeles, United States. Early this year, my daughter, a few days before her flight home, lost her wallet with passport but within 24 hours had been returned.

A woman had found it on a bus and was handing it into a police station who weren't that interested. A man of Mexican heritage overheard the conversation and offered to help. Luckily my daughter's phone number was in the wallet and he organised to get it back to her with nothing missing. He asked my daughter to put out a good word for Mexicans.

Janette Asche, Indooroopilly, QLD

HIKE AND CRUISE

Thirty five years ago, my partner and I headed off to Hawaii. We roamed the islands on the cheap, crashing mostly in our tent. We ended up on Kauai, hiking along the breathtaking Kalalau trail on the Na Pali coast. Just before sunset on the second day we crossed our last stream and feasted our eyes on the pristine sands of Kalalau beach.

We set up camp and spent two days in clothing optional bliss, showering in the handy waterfall. This July, we sat on the balcony of a cruise ship and toasted the coast as we sailed past in style.

Brett Robinson, Thirroul, NSW

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WHEN IN ROME

We have recently returned from Europe and while in France stayed at the Begonia apartment on Ille St. Louis that was the subject of a letter to Traveller. The experience was magical. The apartment location was spot on, handy to places we wanted to visit around Paris, it was close to some reasonable cafes and restaurants and the patisserie directly opposite was a great source of fresh bread and pastries daily.

The apartment was clean and tidy, and larger than the apartment we stayed at on our previous visit to France. I would also recommend Residenza Maritti Classic Rooms in Rome. The name belies its quaintness. The property is a former five storey house that has been in the same family for over 100 years, and is now run by three brothers and their mother, introduced as the "wicked stepmother".

The rooms are large, and on each floor there is a kitchenette to self cater if one wants to do that. Close by there are a number of quality restaurants serving a variety of food, from traditionally Italian, to silver service. Prices are reasonable and well worth exploring. The property is walking distance from the colosseum, the vatican, and other sites.

John Fuhrman, Kambah, ACT

A ROOM OF ONE'S OWN

In response to Single Minded, (Traveller letters, August 17) I have recently returned from a solo trip in Wales with Grand UK Tours. The tour was for 55+ age group passengers, and there was no single supplement. I had a room to myself and the trip was very well organised with a mixed  group of singles and couples and a tour leader. They also have tours to Europe which all originate in the UK. I would recommend this company to single travellers wishing to avoid the dreaded "supplement".

Joan Tickell, Mt Riverview, NSW

SINGULAR CASH GRAB

Like Tony Gerard (Traveller letters, August 24), I abhor tipping and only do so when coerced, but for a different reason. As a solo traveller I am so thoroughly ripped off by "the single supplement", sometimes for the worst rooms, tables, seats, etc, that any tip I might have been willing to give has long since left my cash reserves. For the same reason, I don't give "a suggested donation" to places I can go without paying. I actually pay more to travel than each half of a couple but it's allocated differently. Those people and establishments that don't benefit from my travel dollars might think about challenging tour operators and their cash grabs from people like me.

Margaret Callinan, Balwyn, VIC

FINDING YOUR WAY

The article by Alison Stewart - Gait Ways (Traveller, August 24) embodies all there is to enjoy on the Camino. I've been lucky enough to experience walking the Camino twice with Wandering the World and I have to say both times changed my life and the way I interact, I've become far more honest with myself. It's a humbling experience and full of emotion. I've only walked to "smaller" Camino's and thoroughly enjoyed them both, I can only imagine the joy brought by the experience of a full Camino.......one day.

Paul Soanes, Doncaster, VIC

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