I AM WRITING TO ASK ABOUT PEOPLE WHO GET REALLY SEASICK - AS IN NAUSEOUS - ON THE MANLY FERRY. APART FROM RIVER CRUISES, WHAT OTHERS MIGHT BE OK? MY HUSBAND AND I WOULD LOVE TO DO A CANADA/ALASKA TRIP BUT THEY ALL SEEM TO INVOLVE SEVEN DAYS ON THE INSIDE PASSAGE. WOULD THAT BE OK FOR ME? WHAT MEDICATIONS DO YOU RECOMMEND?
J. DRAPER, CORAL COVE, QLD
The Inside Passage is sheltered waters for the most part. It is not typically a rough stretch of water, although it can be and you should be prepared for the worst. Given your condition, starting your cruise from Vancouver rather than Seattle will reduce your sailing time in open water.
Other seas that qualify as relatively placid most of the time include the Kimberley coast and Indonesia's Nusa Tenggara, the chain of islands stretching east from Bali.
Meclizine, also sold as Bonine, Bonamine, Antivert, Postafen, Sea Legs, and Dramamine, is available over the counter in North America. Many voyagers recommend it as effective against seasickness, but I suggest a GP visit. There are highly effective prescription medications and a pre-cruise visit to your GP is a must if you have a history.
MY FATHER WAS INTERNED DURING THE WAR IN STALAG LUFT III IN ZAGAN, POLAND, THE INSPIRATION FOR THE FILM THE GREAT ESCAPE. I KNOW NOTHING IS LEFT OF THE CAMP BUT I BELIEVE THERE IS A MUSEUM. MY BROTHERS AND I ARE PLANNING TO VISIT ZAGAN SOON. DO YOU KNOW OF ANY ORGANISED TOURS, OR POSSIBLY A PRIVATE TOUR?
S. SHEPPARD, MITTAGONG
Fantastic idea and there certainly is a Museum of the Prisoner of War Camps (muzeum.zagan.pl) at Zagan, which tells the story of the German POW camp at Stalag Luft III. The museum has done a fine job of recreating the watch towers and barracks that once stood on the site, as well as conditions for the Allied airmen imprisoned there. A highlight is the "Harry" Tunnel, the one depicted in the movie The Great Escape. The museum lies a few kilometres from the town of Zagan and an English-speaking guide is available at €20 ($29) an hour, and should be booked in advance. Wroclaw Sightseeing Tours (wroclawsightseeingtours .com) offers a Great Escape Tour, a one-day guided tour of the camp with an English-speaking guide. The tour begins and ends at Wroclaw and you can fly into the city or get there by train. Berlin is the closest major city, a five-hour journey, from Warsaw is longer You could drive from Berlin (about three hours). The best of the local hotels in Zagan is the Willa Park (willapark.pl). Anyone interested in this fascinating story should Google "Rob Davis Great Escape".
I AM TAKING TWO DAUGHTERS AGED 16 AND 18 ON A WHIRLWIND TRIP TO DUBLIN, LONDON AND PARIS IN LATE SEPTEMBER. I'M WORRIED ABOUT DUBLIN. WE'LL BE JETLAGGED, SO I PROBABLY WON'T WANT TO DO A HUGE AMOUNT, BUT WHAT CAN WE DO THERE?
M. IBRAHIM, BERALA
Dublin is a wonderful, compact city for walking and wandering and, assuming this is your first destination, that's exactly what you need for the first few days after a long trip. The Chester Beatty Library, the Old Library and the Book of Kells, the National Gallery, the National Museum and College Green, site of Trinity College, are all must-sees.
The Dublin Fringe Festival (fringefest.com) takes place from September 15-20 this year. It offers 16 riotous days of dance, music, comedy and spectacle, if your visit happens to coincide. Following that is the Dublin Theatre Festival (dublintheatrefestival.com). See the Time Out website for Dublin (timeout.com) for current events.
County Wicklow, south of Dublin, will give you a taste of the beautiful Irish countryside.
CONVERSATION OVER TO YOU . . .
The question was: When you fly, do you pay attention to the safety demonstration?
From I. Szabo: "My family and I had a great flight from Brisbane to Cairns about six years ago. The flight attendant was Irish and presented the safety demonstration as if it were a comedy skit. He had everyone's attention and there was much laughter. One example: 'You are permitted to smoke on this aircraft but not in the toilets. A staff member will assist, strap you to the wing and provide a lighter.' Maybe a little over the top but we are still waiting for him to appear on one of our flights again!"
From M. McNamara: "I watch the demo if it's an airline or plane I haven't travelled with before, but not on the domestic flight I take regularly. If all airlines followed Air New Zealand's lead and used great humour and current references, everyone would watch. Their Lord of the Rings demo was fabulous."
J. Larson writes: "My husband and I have recently returned from five weeks of touring the US. We flew with Delta Airlines 13 times and the very clever video presentation of Delta's safety instructions was done tongue in cheek, acknowledging the boring sameness that these required safety demonstrations have. Good for Delta for doing what's legally required and also realising that the way to communicate with passengers is through humour and not a lecture."
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