Berlin, Germany – Photo by:Ghost Presenter

The Flight Deck

Our weekly travel dispatch from the Internet Wasteland


The Space Between Us: “There’s a Danish word for it: Onism – the quiet frustration of being stuck in one body, that can only inhabit one place at a time; the realisation that one’s lifetime is too short to experience everything in the world.

So although I love the longing for faraway places, I am slowly accepting that no matter how much I travel, there will always be blank spaces on my map. The only way I can stop them from plaguing me is to be where I am with all my heart.” The always excellent Shivya Nath discusses something that all travelers feel: The Blank Spaces on Our Maps

The Damascus Redemption: “The origins of koshary are hard to nail down. There’s some Indian influence: the name koshary itself is believed to come from the Hindi word khichdi, a dish made of rice and lentils. The British, who ruled India at the time, brought the dish to Egypt, which was a major trading center on the route through the Red Sea, and then on to India. The Italians, who arrived in Egypt later, added pasta to the dish. Then the Egyptians contributed spicy tomato sauce, beans, and fried onions. Today, koshary is a street favorite—the unofficial national food of Egypt.

“From the ghafeer (doorman) to the wazeer (government minister), everyone eats koshary in Egypt,” Radwan says, invoking an old Egyptian adage about how koshary is a dish for the masses.

Radwan’s blue truck, Kairo Koshary, with a symbol of two wheels—a reference to how koshary is traditionally served as a street dish from a wooden cart in Egypt—also sums up his itinerant life: from a revolutionary on the streets of Egypt to a prisoner in Syria, and now an immigrant entrepreneur in Germany.” Roads and Kingdoms: He was tortured in a Syrian prison. Now he runs a food truck in Germany. (We might have buried the lede with this one…)

Unfinished Business: “Several years later and I was ready. I had just finished six months working in a hotel in Norway and had saved almost every penny (or kroner) I earned to make the journey to Australia. I was going overland with a someone I’d met who was returning to South Africa. We made it to India together which was where we would split up. He to the west, me to the east.

It didn’t happen. At the last moment I chickened out. I got scared of travelling alone in India where Europeans disappeared from trains, never to be seen again. I joined him and headed west. To South Africa. I met some New Zealanders in Cape Town. They were moving to Australia and invited me to stay with them once I got there. Which meant returning to Norway for another summer season and then flying out to Sydney. I wasn’t taking any chances.” In travel, so often we talk about the places we get to go, and why they’re special. But what happens when the destination of a lifetime remains just out of reach? Jude from Small Blue Green Words: The Call to a Place


The Business of Travel

Don’t Call it a Comeback: “An infamous theme park dedicated to “The Wizard of Oz” is reopening this summer for just six days in June. While the dates are limited, you won’t need a hot air balloon or ruby slippers to get there. The Land of Oz, a famously failed theme park on Beech Mountain, in North Carolina, will be offering one-hour guided tours every Friday in June, as well as Saturday, June 30, the Charlotte Observer reported.” In case you wanted to relive your childhood, North Carolina has you covered: Once-Abandoned ‘Wizard of Oz’ Theme Park Is Opening for the Summer.

Yada Yada Big Data: You guessed it, if you thought last week‘s buzzword list wasn’t long enough we  have one more: Why airlines are finally poised to unlock Big Data to enhance the passenger experience (this may become a running series at this point).

Detour (the app!): Detour, the walking tour app has been acquired by Bose. You get the app for free until May 31st. Check out AFAR for more details.


Ready. Set. Listen.

Can You Visit Every Country Without Burning Out? | Women Who Travel: The Women Who Travel team sit down with Jessica Nabongo, who is “on a mission to be the first black woman to visit every country in the world.”

If you have stories about globe spanning food trucks, creepy theme parks or cringe worthy travel buzzwords, feel free to forward them to info@planesplustrains.com. If you are a blogger, vlogger or even a smoother talker and you want us to highlight your content in further dispatches, feel free to send us a message as well.

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