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Burbank CA: High-priced food dispensers debut


The vending machine is called Beverly Hills Caviar. However, the first one has just been set up in the modest bedroom town of Burbank, about 20 miles and billions of dollars away from the other snooty and grossly wealthy Southern California city.

It’s a digital touch-screen vending machine now in operation on the second floor of the Burbank Towne Shopping Mall at 201 E. Magnolia Blvd. For a high price, you can choose from what the company calls “a large selection of the world’s finest caviar, truffles, escargot, bottarga, blinis, oils, Mother of Pearl plates and spoons, gift boxes and gourmet salts.”

If you happen to be visiting Burbank and in the mall there, take a look at the example of excess that few people can afford these days. According to price listings, the items can each cost anywhere from under $50 up to $500. 

Public dispensing machines have come a long way. How many of us can still remember the penny chewing gum and tiny Hershey bar machines? Back in the 1930s and 1940s, they were on el and subway platforms in Philly, New York, Chicago, Boston and elsewhere.

Can’t Visit Springtime In The Park In Person? Do It Live Online! PDF Print E-mail


Central Park in New York now offers online tours. Because of the coronavirus problems, the US National Park Service has closed some locations around the country, but keeping several open with no entrance fees.

It’s also offering 32 virtual tours, including the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone and Maine’s Acadia National Park. Check online for info, including open hours, restrictions and fees.

 
Q: Coronavirus Fear: Should I Wear Gloves While Traveling? PDF Print E-mail


I obey all the warnings recommending washing hands while dealing with dirty surfaces on the road and in the air. I’ll be taking a train trip next week and wonder if I should not only wash, but also put on gloves. Advice? JKH, New Amsterdam NY

A: If you have sore or tender skin, wear gloves. No matter what your skin condition, it’s a good idea to wear tight plastic gloves when using public transportation, especially when using public toilets. Thoroughly wash hands and gloves as often as possible in hot, soapy water. Carry an extra pair so you’re always prepared for protection.

 
Los Angeles CA: Ban Cars Downtown To Solve Traffic Mess? PDF Print E-mail


Even with the reduction in cars due to the coronavirus scare, the City of Angels’ center can get absolutely devilish with its heavy congestion. It’s especially crowded during morning and afternoon drive time. Also at night, when dining and entertainment venues fill downtown streets with drivers seeking parking spaces.

The City Council and other officials have suggested a total ban on driving and parking to rid the downtown streets, both day and night, of the ever-growing problem. Further discussions will include expanding subway and regularly scheduled buses and trains to make public access to the downtown more convenient, while less hectic with car jams. www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-02-16/los-angeles-ban-cars-broadway-downtown-streetcar-pedestrian-zone

 
California Shuts Down To Ease The Virus Impact PDF Print E-mail


The governor issued an order that encourages seniors and others to stay safe at home. All non-essential retail businesses are to be closed. Still allowed open and functioning include dine-in restaurants, bars and nightclubs, entertainment venues, gyms and fitness studios, public events and gatherings, convention centers.

Additionally, essential services still available include gas stations, pharmacies, grocery stores, farmers markets, food banks, convenience stores, take-out and delivery restaurants, banks, laundromats/laundry services. Also, essential state and local government functions, including law enforcement and offices that provide government programs and services are open. This is now in effect throughout California and in many other states.

 
Q: Confused By Travel News Reports: Will My Flight Fly Or Not? PDF Print E-mail


With the ever-changing info about airline and other travel schedules, I don’t know how to handle it. Is my trip on or off? How do I deal with the confusion? PJJ, New Rochelle NY

A: Flight schedules are now often changed or cancelled. And because of the coronavirus hysteria, sometimes as frequently as hourly. For several hours before you leave for the airport for your scheduled flight, check online with the airline at least once every 30 minutes before you leave home to the airport.

If you’re told the flight is cancelled, stay home and/or book the best schedule you can get that day. When there’s no satisfactory reschedule, start the refund request. Remember this is happening much more frequently these days, so be as patient as possible with the situation, as well as  endure just about anything else related to travel.

 
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