Spelling Bee

31 05 2007

onychomycosis jardiniere cenacle terpsichore negus ptilopod butyraldehyde stramineous retiarius corydora hussar dysbarism umami siphonogamous drepanocytosis biwa clevis scherzando Menckense suimate araneiform ciguatera lekvar difficile pteridology rhodochrosite affiche sagittal gardez lomatine calenture diastrophe soubise exophthalmic tentaculocyst psilosis melotrope impuissance castrensian fufuraceous Plattdeutsch  burelage carnassial staphyotomy didymous sutler truttaceous chromotrichial porphyry bialy meliodosis capilotade tufoli grego ooporphyrin beccafico reblochon strigil azotea papillon logogriph stapes corrigenda periostracum zwieback epicondylic orotund Torquemada rissole ursigram silenus lomilomi pharyngitis frututicose genetric trypanosomiasis vizierial platitudinous marron rayonnant salinelle piroplasmosis kiddush Ayurveda desuetude hiulm paronomasia tattersall quatenus nugatory craquelure bracteolate  illeist acaraiasis pachysandra ruderal poliomyelitis encephalopathy Gruyere coadunation brushcetta oleic somma puncheon lambdacism arboricole exsiccate truncal zeugma ophidian parisology meralgia canaliculate anadiplosis varioloiform tetradactylous schneider quoddy periclitate erinaceous bottega diocesan oubliette pygopodous sopite rheotropism loris petroglyhpy unguiculate bourgade circumbendibus flebile silicocolous parasiticidal encolure acuminate Marielito roturier transisthmian orenda carneau elan pasquinade sunglo ratiocinate prosopography ogive chamfer apocope gastrilegous hirudiniasis myrmecologist


In Transit

30 05 2007

Lipps Inc

29 05 2007



Travel Jitterbug

28 05 2007

Ten thousandth unique blog hit today. Somebody else seems to be reading. Thank you! 

Ferrytale Wedding

27 05 2007


S & B’s only T got married last night. It was an absolutely beautiful reception in the hull of the Ferry Building. Great to see T’s nana tear up the dance floor to this song:

Happy Memorial Day.

Travel Assistant

26 05 2007

So you buy an airfare much in advance. Then you sit back. Then the price rises. What can you do? You ask for a refund of course. Alaska, JetBlue, Southwest, United and US Airways all offer vouchers for the full price difference for a future trip. Others off vouchers or cash back after deducting change fees, which are between $75 and $100. This only works if you bought the ticket directly from the airline (free phone or website) and not from a consolidator, such as expedia or travelocity. Unless the price change occurred in the next 24 hours after you purchased the ticket. Other consolidators might have specific policies so read the fine print.

This “rollover” policy has been in effect for decades but the catch is you have to ring when the lower price is still in effect. Yapta which is Your Amazing Personal Travel Assistant, has an elegant algorithm which was launched on May 22. You can use Yapta before you buy to alertyou to price changes on a trip or if the price drops. To obtain the voucher, you have to ring the freephone yourself (you cannot snare a voucher online). Farecast tried to predict if prices will rise or fall in a market and gives you a “buy” or “wait” recommendation. Farecompare offers historical information that might help decide if a fare might drop in the future based on behavior in the last twelve months.

Expedia’s “Fare Alert” sits in your PC toolbar and pops up when a lower fare comes along on a favored route. Travelocity’s “FareWatcher” lets you pick city pairs and you are alerted when the price changes by $25 or more. Orbitz’ “Deal Detector” lets you select only nonstop flights or preferred airlines. Yapta is great as it allows you to pinpoint prices on specific flights. Right now, it will integrate with Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz and most US airline websites but not multiples like Kayak. Once you tag a flight, Yapta will email you when the price changes and alerts you to refund possibilities, keeping in mind the policies of the airline. On average, the voucher refund was $85 among 275 bet atesters. United and Alaska were the most generous with choices of free vouchers or cash back after change fees. American and Continental are the stingiest as the price drop has to be greater than the $100 change fee. Nearly all airlines have liberal same day and 24-hour price guarantees. Expedia and Travelocity not only reissue the ticket at the lower price but refund the difference and give you a goodwill $50 voucher. You must act quickly.

Trafalgar Square

26 05 2007

.. is green today. But just the bit between Nelson’s Column and National Gallery looks very nice. It probably won’t survive until Saturday with the forthcoming rain and showers, and thousands of people coming to stand on it and take pictures. Tomorrow, they need to set up the stage for Sunday’s Festival of Youth Art. The turf, which has been sourced from the Vale of York,  will then be moved to Bishops Park in Hammersmith and Fulham. This is another project from Visit London to promote London’s green spaces and villages.