Showing posts with label disabilities. Show all posts
Showing posts with label disabilities. Show all posts

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Welcome to 2020

Happy New Year!

2020, It's not only a new year, but also a new decade.

As you obviously know by now, I've slowed down a lot over the last years, but I am still here! Now that I have cut down on travel, I really hope to get caught up with my stories and photos on the places I haven't written about on this blog yet.

Although I've done stories, there are so many more details I get to include on Wine And Spirits Travel I'm looking forward to telling you about Mackinac Island, Michigan, Rockford, Illinois, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, Richmond, Indiana, and many other places I've loved.

I also have some other news: I've been invited by Amazon to be one of their official influencers. The program, which began two years ago with high profile influencers such as Shark Tank's Mark Cuban, has no been expanded to real people like me, with many followers on various platforms.

My page is all about things I do, wear, and use. Your not going to find expensive face creams or $500 blenders on this page, but you will find my favorite face cream, back patches, and even the ($15) portable mixer I love.

Bookmark A Few of My Favorite Things and check out some of the products I have. I'll be continuially adding things I love.

Marcia Frost

P.S. You can also check out my product reviews at Spiritstraveler, which includes liquour, one thing Amazon does not sell.

Friday, September 27, 2019

More Cheap Trick, Gardens & Brew in Rockford

When I planned my trip to Rockford, I heard from quite a few people that I must have breakfast at The Stockholm. I was a bit disappointed when it wasn’t on our (very full) schedule, but a twist of fate brought us there anyway. 

The first stop of the day on the Rockford itinerary for Brittany, Amanda, and I was the Anderson Japanese Gardens. We were to have brunch there and then explore. 

Since they were also having an event that day, there was no brunch. That opened up our chance to go to The Stockholm. This restaurant is on the Cheap Trick Trail because of the Rick Nielsen connection. He’s a part-owner and full lover of this restaurant. 

The menu is huge, reminding me of a New York diner, but Swedish specialties where you would see Greek ones. Due to the breakfast mix-up, we were starving by the time we sat down. I ordered a Swedish Coffee Cake for us to share while we waited. 

It was as scrumptious as it looked and certainly whet our appetite for the rest. I always go toward the sweet and I continued with the Swedish pancakes with lingonberries, which are well worth an order at The Stockholm Inn

I also got the potato bake. Although it was delicious, it was a bit too rich for me to have more than a spoonful of. I did pass the rest around the table. 

Brittany and Amanda went for more traditional egg and meat breakfasts and were enjoyed their choice.

The trails were all filled with beautiful plants and flowers and the lakes had colorful fish and ducks. It was a bit warm, but the scenery was tranquil.

We then headed to the Anderson Japanese Gardens. I knew there would be a lot of walking and took my scooter along. Almost all of the garden paths were very accessible. 

With the Japanese Festival taking place there were also booths and additional tea ceremonies taking place (they do have authentic tea ceremonies at other times too). 

The Midway Village is a most unusual place that is a great experience for children and adults. In addition to the recreated 19th century village, representing a typical Northern Illinois town, there is a museum dedicated to the history of Rockford. 

I asked Brittany and Amanda to explore the village while I walked around the much smaller Dollhouse exhibit. We then met up in the museum.

I was really amazed at the history of Rockford after going through the Midway Village Museum. 

There were displays on the Emerson Carriage Company, the immigration to this area from Norway, Sweden, and Italy that was recruited through Ellis Island, and the dedications to the Rockford Peaches, the baseball team you may remember depicted in A League of Their Own. 

Also at Midway Village is another Cheap Trick shoutout, this one a Sock Monkey (Sock Monkeys were also made in Rockford) in their honor. 

We drove through downtown to look at some of the nine murals created in the Rockford CRE8IV project. They are well-worth a look. 

Our last Rockford stop was at Prairie Street Brewing Company, located in the spot Englishman Jonathan Peacock arrived in 1849 with the dream of building a brewery. 

Prairie Street has a large selection on microbrews, with the Peacock, Passion Fruit, and Peach Wheat all getting accolades from Brittany and Amanda. I enjoyed one of their mules, and their house made non-alcoholic root beer. 

The menu is very large and has some interesting things on it. The Poutine was a huge hit and Amanda raved about their creative Trolley Burger, with Applewood bacon, fried egg, provolone, thousand island dressing, and an onion ring. 

For dessert, we shared a rich and chocolatey S’mores Tart. 

Rockford is another Midwest spot that outlived my expectations with so much to see and do. The team at the CVB really put together a great trip for us!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Make sure you #SkipAirCanada

I had an amazing trip to Nova Scotia, Canada, recently. I didn’t want it to be marred by horrendous travel with Air Canada. I’ll get to the trip in the next blogs, with all its details, but I wanted to first warn travelers about this airline.

If you read my blog, you know by now that I try to focus on the positive and rarely post negative. I just don’t see the point in talking about the bad when there is so much good. Occasionally, I need to change that strategy. This is one of those times.

Here is the letter I sent to Air Canada, which details what happens. At the time, I was suffering from an arthritis flare AND had a respiratory infection and fever. I was traveling in a wheelchair.

> From:
> Sent: 20/08/2017 12:27 PM
> Subject: Treatment by Your Airline
> I don't even know where to begin with my (first) experience with your airline. I guess it started weeks before my flight when I wrote that I was a journalist flying to do a tv segment and a story. No response in weeks. That should have told me how much Air Canada cares about customers.
> Despite the fact that I have been going through chemo and recovering from a respiratory infection, I got up at 4:30 am and drove an hour and a half to Indianapolis airport. This trip was for my job-to cover a day in Halifax and then three days in Fox Harbr. I expected Air Canada to do its job too. I was wrong.
> Ten minutes before boarding, it was announced that our flight would be delayed for two hours. It hadn't left Toronto yet. Obviously, everyone knew before boarding time that it hadn't left Toronto yet (lie 1). The agent told me that it was too late to get me on the flight through Montreal and I was going to miss my connection and there was nothing he could get me (lie 2).
> I called Air Canada and explained that I only had a short time in Halifax with the tourist board to do my story and she said she couldn't get me in until 10:30 at night (lie 3). She said it was because of bad weather in NY and Canada (lie 4-at that moment, my daughter was boarding an on-time plane in sunny NY to Canada).
> When we finally got on our flight, the pilot apologized for the mechanical problems in Toronto (proving 4 was a lie). He said he would try to make up some time so we can make our connections. We did, but when we got there we couldn't get to a gate. "Oh, well," was all he said.
> Since I was ill, I was traveling in a wheelchair. I asked the flight attendant and the wheelchair attendant if there was a way for me to get to that flight. "I don't know, we'll ask the next person. " everyone continued to chat and pass my wheelchair around until someone finally said, "that flight left!"
> I was taken to a desk where they told me that I was on the 4:30 plane. Then I was taken in the wheelchair to security, where the woman told me there would be a wheelchair on the other side to take me to my gate. There wasn't and I was told they didn't have enough, so they dropped me a distance from my gate.
> Exhausted and wheezing, I made my way to the desk. I said there wasn't a wheelchair and if they can't find one, please give me time to get on the plane and a seat toward the front. He said, “no problem.”
> Well, he continued to give out seat assignments for 30 minutes. When he finally got to me, I was in row 32!! I said there was no way I could walk back there and I was told I didn't have a choice, he had given out the closer seats. I was exhausted, coughing and couldn't breathe by the time I made it back there. The flight attendants are more human than the rest of your staff.
> Since you fly out of the U.S., I would think you are held to the same standards when it comes to treating the disabled well, but it doesn't seem that anyone on the ground cares.
> If it was up to me, I would never step foot in an Air Canada terminal again, but I cannot afford to buy another flight. PLEASE make sure that I am treated with dignity and respect on my return flight, which I hope will run smoothly-or we will at least be told the truth if there are problems.
> I would really like to re-write the current opening to my stories and TV segment... Head to Nova Scotia for a wonderful vacation, but stay away from Air Canada.
> PS your social media which is usually my go-to for help during travel,
> also had no interest in going out of their way

No response from Air Canada in the five days before my next flights, which were just as bad. Both flights were delayed, the second of which I was rushed to the gate, told that there was no time for food or the bathroom. Again, at the gate, we were told we were boarding soon, when the agent knew very well that the plane had not only not arrived, it hadn’t left its previous destination!

The response from Air Canada was not only a ridiculous denial of everything that happened, but a “gesture of will” $150 e-coupon. I informed them that the coupon wouldn’t get me even a one way flight and I’m not about to gamble on paying for flights and being treated so badly again. This is all I got..

“To show our regret about the service you received, we offered you the travel discount as a goodwill gesture. We hope you understand that we have made an honest effort to address the situation and we hope to have the opportunity to welcome you on board in the future.”

I didn’t even respond.

I urge everyone to give serious consideration before you book anything with Air Canada. Not only did I experience horrid customer service with FOUR consecutive flights, but they refuse to even credit them.

#SkipAirCanada I definitely will.

P.S. Stay tuned for the report on that wonderful (on land) trip to the Halifax region of Nova Scotia, Canada