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Fried Dough Around the World

frieddough

For dessert, we span the globe in search of fried dough - and discover that it's a sweet sticky treat enjoyed by millions around the world - everyone just calls it something different!

The fun fried dough folks at Oso-Ono have compiled a history of the dessert - "From No Hole to Hole and Back" - highlighting the variations of dough that have evolved over centuries. Beginning in the Portuguese Azores and Madeira islands in 1445, fried dough - called malassada, is traced through the years.

With or without a hole, many ethnic communities lay claim to some form of fried dough: beignet (France), churro (Spain/Mexico), zeppole (Italy), poori (India) or paa thong koh (Thailand) - just to name a few. Here are photos, descriptions and sources for all the research done by this California company on 35 different types of delicious worldwide fried dough desserts. Yum.

Kuwait's Budget Airline

jazeeraNot all the airlines are reorganizing and consolidating. Here's a brand spanking new one, and a first for the Middle East - the Online Travel Review reports that the first privately owned airline in the region, Jazeera Airways, will begin flying on November 16 from Kuwait City. Passengers will be able to book online for flights to Dubai, Lebanon, Damascus, Amman and Bahrain. There are plans to expand to India, Egypt and South East Asia in the future, eventually managing approximately 75 flights per week at below market prices. You can read more here:

Jazeera Airways Cleared for Takeoff
Kuwait's Private Air Jazeera to Fly

A to Z of Adventure Insurance

worldnomadsWhile on the topic of health insurance, I have to point out this clever page from the World Nomads website. This Australian insurance company caters to the independent traveler, and although I've never used them myself, I've read positive stuff from travelers who have purchased a policy with them. Heck, I'd use them just because of their noteworthy creative writing skills. Never have I been so enthralled to read about insurance.

Their A to Z of Adventure page is written with true Aussie wit. It gives a run down of all the zany activities that they do - and more importantly, DON'T cover - so travelers know what's in store if something goes wrong on the road. They start out with a few scenario questions that I laughed out loud at while reading, and point potential customers to The Darwin Awards to illustrate the really stupid things folks do. Then they tell us again and again, all the way down the page, that they will not cover us for stupid things, or things that they think folks are crazy for doing, like chasing a bear while on the piss, running with the bulls or BASE jumping.

World Nomads doesn't cover any activity that uses support ropes (that means no hang gliding, ice climbing or parachuting) but they do cover bungee jumping, camel riding and zorbing. Go figure.

Going Tribal

goingtribalGoing Tribal

is a series on Discovery that was originally produced by the BBC and aired in the UK as "Tribal". Each episode follows former British Royal Marine Bruce Parry as he spends approximately one month becoming immersed in the culture, language and rituals of a native community. This Telegraph article gives a detailed account of what Parry experienced, as well as additional background about the intrepid expeditioner and what led him to this role as friend of the tribal families.


There were six episodes in the BBC series and if Discovery follows suit, then tomorrow night's programs (10 pm EST) may be the last one, taking Parry to Venezuela, where he'll train as a shaman with the Sanema tribe. Prior episodes have had Parry horseback with the Darhads in Mongolia, visit cannibals in West Paupa, practice donga with the Suri in Ethiopia, eat "rat cake" in the Himalayas and hunt in the rainforests of Gabon.

To those who might criticize Parry for even wanting to bother these remote tribes, he explained, "We tried to be very culturally sensitive with everyone. We thought about it all very carefully. My personal aim was to show each community as normal human societies with the same loves and hopes that we have."

Geography Name Game

globeLast week Terry Riley at Tripso posted this creative bit about vocation vacations. His list of locations and matching vocations is catchy and fun, inspired by Site 59's work-themed travel packages.

As Labor Day comes to a close and many of us prepare to head back to work tomorrow, I decided to try and find just a few more places with vocation-like names, this time venturing outside the states to see what I could find that matched up with English language words for certain jobs. Some of these are a stretch, I'll admit, but it's as creative as I could get on my day off! If you think of any more, please add them in the comments below.

R&B Musician - Seoul, S. Korea

Soap Maker - Ivory Coast

Wine Maker - Cork, Ireland

Doctor or Nurse - Medicine Hat, Canada

Sandwich Maker - Delhi, India

Cheese Maker - Munster, Germany or Cheddar, England

Map Maker - Atlas Mountains (Africa)

Chef - Cook Islands, New Zealand

Travel Agent - Tours, France

Diver - Plunge, Lithuania

Hair Dresser - Perm, Russia

Gymnast - Split, Croatia

Body Builder - Pecs, Hungary


Never Be Complete

nevercompleteThis post marks the first installment of a new regular series at Gadling that will spotlight one "engaged traveler" each week. Engaged travelers can be defined in many ways, but I've chosen to focus on those that are giving back - let's call it "philanthropy on the road". I'm active in the fundraising field, so I find myself paying particular attention to what motivates travelers to give. The reasons are endless and the examples are everywhere. I read A LOT of travel blogs and am simply amazed by the outpouring and generosity I see. So, let's get inspired...

First up is Dan Demole of Never Be Complete. I've been reading Dan's blog since February. He has written wonderfully detailed reports as he's moved from Costa Rica to Europe to Africa, where he is now. I donated $10 to his site for upkeep back in March, because it takes considerable time and money to provide the level of detail he does, and I think his site is one of the most impressive out there. (His flash intro must not be missed!)

Well, last week Dan had the bus ride from hell. But then, just a few days later, he had a truly unforgettable experience at an orphanage/school in Mozambique that cares for 55 kids whose parents have died of HIV/AIDS. Because of this, he decided to act, and is no longer accepting donations for himself on the site. Instead, Dan is asking for support for the orphanage, which can be directly transferred to the organization through his website. Dan has continued on his journey and is currently in Zimbabwe, but he has been hard at work setting up the support page on his site and getting the word out about this incredible group of children he encountered. If you want to help, check out Dan's story and consider making a donation. (Also, for anyone planning a RTW trip, his site is an excellent resource, with detailed budget and pre-trip info.)

A Ski Resort Rises from the Sands

Ski Dubai

Here's something which will make your either shake your head or pack your skis. There's a place in the Dubai desert where you will soon be able to seek indoor skiing. Called Ski Dubai, this 25-story mountain-themed resort is set to open this September, according to Yahoo/AFP. It will boast a slope with an overall length of 400 metres, five trails of different grades and full time falling snowflakes. It is being built as part of the Mall of the Emirates, which the AFP says will be the world's third largest shopping center when completed.

The "On the Verge of Discovery" Caribbean

Less Discovered Caribbean

The Caribbean...as it once was before mass tourism choked it. Authentic local experiences, no American chains and a feeling of discovering a place few others have seen. If you haven't hit ports of call like these yet, says the San Francisco Chronicle, you better get off your duff and make plans soon. Cruise lines are working on expanding their stops to places like Belize City and Isla de la Margarita and it will only be a matter of time before you are greeted dockside by Ronald McDonald or a Hooters girl.

Eco Fun for Divers and Land Lubbers Alike

Eco Wonderlands

MSNBC has a great story up right now from Sport Diver magazine about 10 amazing "eco wonderlands" which will excite divers and land lubbers alike. Their top choices include the waters and wilds of Dominica, Tobago, Belize, the "Maya Riviera" and good old American Maui. There's also the usual suggestions on "must dos" and interesting lodging.

Budget Travel's Seven Modern Wonders

Seven Modern WondersRanging from the Grand Canyon to the Tour de France, Budget Travel has done a great round up of what they consider to be seven wonders of the modern world and how you can get to see them without blowing your wad. Stonehenge in particular is one place I've always wanted to visit. The myths and legends behind this free standing circle of stones are varied, with no one truly knowing their origins (unless you are Merlin of course).

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