Top Cities to Travel to Just for its Food

Top Cities to Travel to Just for its Food

Source: Unsplash@cbuchler

With travel restrictions lifting (both in the world and in our weary minds), the cities best known for food are becoming open season for weary home-locked quarantiners. The delicious smells wafting down the streets would be more than enough to get you out of your house … if only you could smell them!

This list is the equivalent of us bringing the smells to you. Here are the top cities to travel to just for the food.

Florence

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Florence, Italy is a staple of Tuscan cuisine and the inventor of Florentine favorites enjoyed around the world. One of the most famous is Bistecca alla Fiorentina, Florentine steak. Another is the historical Lampredotto, a sandwich made from boiled tripe and sold in tantalizing outdoor markets around the city (don’t forget the gelato!).

Kyoto

Source: Unsplash@bady

Japanese sushi has become a staple of high-end takeout everywhere in the world, not just in Japan. The beautiful bars and exclusive restaurants of this glittering city are famed everywhere for their glamor and rarity, from meaty hamo (conger eel) to delicious matcha tea.

San Miguel de Allende

Source: Unsplash@Jezael Melgoza

This list is full of innovative cuisine and the street food of San Miguel de Allende in Mexico is no exception. However, sometimes the best food in the world is humble and traditional but jolted into the 21st century with a dose of chic. From Mex-Thai fusion cuisine to upscale chilaquiles, San Miguel de Allende is where it’s happening.

Paris

Source: Unsplash@jsycra

No list of great cuisine would be complete without the place where cuisine as a concept was quite literally invented. Paris is more than a great croissant, however. From its over 1,000 gourmet cheeses to the best Parisian bistros, the City of Lights is a complete culinary journey all on its own.

New Orleans

Source: Unsplash@jennyhayut

New Orleans is a site of incredible fusion, where the cuisines of France, Spain, and West Africa combine into something truly soulful and unique. From delicious Po’Boys to spicy gumbos, New Orleans is a site for homestyle creativity like few others in the U.S.

Barcelona

Source: Unsplash@barilo

Barcelona in Spain is home to some of the world’s must-try foods. These include incredible ibérico ham, Spanish omelets, fresh seafood, and patatas bravas, which are potato wedges, fried and crispy. And don’t forget the one-pan wonder, paella, practically the national dish of Spain, with the incredible fragrance of saffron and the taste of all that delectable seafood.

The Takeaway

The above cities are host to some of the most amazing cuisines in the world, from sparkling seafood to the humblest yet most delicious Mexican street fare. As soon as you’re back out into the world and looking for the best food around, the best anywhere, consider stopping at one of these culinary meccas on your way.

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Top Destinations For Black Travelers

Top Destinations For Black Travelers

A lot of us had plans for travel in 2019 and 2020, but with most of the world closed to casual travelers, a lot of experiences went unfulfilled. With vaccinations at a good saturation point, travel is now back on the books, and 2021 is set to be a year to remember. There is nothing better than packing your bags and setting out for an unforgettable adventure. Even if you are not looking for adventure, a relaxing vacation in places that you have always dreamed of exploring is worth your consideration.

The travel industry has always been a bit of a mixed bag for the Black diaspora even well before the outbreak. With the spotlight on equality and revolutions being launched across the world, now is a better time than ever to travel according to your moral compass. Use travel companies that support our causes and choose travel locations that not only are Black traveler-friendly, but also those that support black communities and our allies.

Marrakech, Morocco

https://travelnoire.com/black-expat-felt-community-strangers-morocco

No travel list is complete without the addition of Morocco. Well known as being the city of creativity and mischief, Black travelers and black creative’s alike have been flocking to Marrakech in droves. By design, the city features a healthy mix of ethnicities and cultures which makes it easy to feel at home no matter where you are from. Marrakech has been the hub of international travel for hundreds if not thousands of years. No matter what your age, if you are looking for adventure and something a bit different from your normal beachside vacation, take a trip to the culture-rich city of Marrakech.

Amsterdam, Netherlands

https://www.theafricancourier.de/news/europe/the-netherlands-black-people-are-here-to-stay/

Amsterdam has long been a tourist spot for all races thanks to its highly progressive levels of tolerance. It has also been rated as one of the best places for single females to travel. Aside from that, Black travelers are guaranteed to enjoy their time in the city and feel welcomed by the community as a whole. There are several communities that are predominately black, such as Oost. The nightlight is rich, colorful, and always shifting with a steady influx of international travelers and locals alike. Their easy libation laws are another draw that many Black travelers will also come to appreciate.

Reykjavik, Iceland

https://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/inside-beyonce-jay-zs-holiday-trip-iceland/story?id=27837913

Despite the name this little island is anything but cold making it a scenic place to visit when you want to get away. It offers a range of stunning glaciers, epic volcanoes, and even luxurious hot springs that the likes of Beyonce has enjoyed on occasion. Although the small nation is largely extremely homogeneous, it is very open to travelers of all backgrounds. There has been some controversy in the past regarding how the country celebrated some of its ancient festivals, which is in no way a reflection of how they treat people of color. The country is very welcoming to black travelers and even has a rich black community of natives of the island, including Ms. Chambers.

London, United Kingdom

https://travelnoire.com/what-it-means-to-be-black-in-london

While the UK may be known for its fog, it is also known for its welcoming atmosphere when it comes to travelers of color. The country features one of the world’s largest and oldest cities that boast a mix of interests, cultures and ethnicities. Many neighborhoods feature a rich and storied black culture such as Brixton which is located in south London. If you have a bit of extra time, you can even visit some of Idris Elba’s favorite spots in his home country. In addition to modern culture, London has a long history with the African race. Consider taking the Black History Walk tour which details in vivid color the contributions black people have given to the London scene.

Accra, Ghana

https://www.cntraveler.com/story/how-to-plan-your-trip-to-afrochella-festival-in-accra-ghana

It makes sense that Ghana would be welcoming to skin folk, being that black people are in a way kinfolk. Accra, in particular, is one of the most generous and friendly places to visit as a black traveler from any part of the world. As soon as you land, you will be greeted with warm smiles, kind words, and graciousness you will only find in west Africa. It may even surprise you to know that many Black Americans have taken their travel to the city a step further and moved there permanently. Although the county is different, it is a safe haven that will welcome you with open arms and open hearts for however long you choose to stay.

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

https://travelnoire.com/black-expat-living-abroad-vietnam-no-job

For Black travelers who are seeking a bit of adventure or less commercial travel for their adventures, Vietnam should be one of the top choices on your list. This county offers lush landscapes, healthy food, and a rich culture that is extremely inviting towards melanated skin. A quick look at the film Da Five Bloods from Spike Lee’s will give you a few reasons to make this country a place to visit on your bucket list. Not only will you get a lesson of the real story behind the participation of the black diaspora in the Vietnam War, it will also give you a look at history from another perspective. Visit the War Remnants Museum and also take a tour through the underground complex to view history up close and personal. Aside from history, the country offers a wide array of luxury resorts, vibrant nightlife, and plenty of other attractions to keep you entertained during your trip.

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, – Black Holocaust Museum

https://www.bizjournals.com/milwaukee/news/2020/09/09/americas-black-holocaust-museum-plans-for-2021.html

Most of the travel spots on our list have been international locations, but we have Stateside that is not only worth mentioning, but is also worth visiting. Milwaukee, Wisconsin has faced a long road in terms of racial history. It was almost destroyed in the ’60s due to various urban renewals but like all things Black, it has fought its way back from extinction with the same spirit our skin folk has always been known for. There are now many businesses and neighborhoods that are once again the highlight of the culture. One important place of note that is the main reason this spot deserves a place on your travel list is America’s Black Holocaust Museum that is set to reopen its doors this year. The museum originally opened on the site of the Sultan Muhammad Islamic Center. This is historically important because the center was opened by the only Black man in history to survive being lynched in America, Dr. James Cameron, who died naturally in 2006.

Each month we curate and present subjects and topics that matter to you. We work with Content Publishers in each of the major areas that impact our readers. Find out more about how you as a content publisher can benefit and grow your audience with curated content.

From Lifestyle to Entertainment to Business and Politics, The Narrative Matters showcases the content from the top minds and authors in their generation.

10 Things to Buy Before College

10 Things to Buy Before College

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Colleges tell you what you need to buy before you get there. However, they’re just talking about the classes, supplies, and books. What they don’t tell you is that once you get to college, there are a few little things that would make your life so much easier. Rather than go to college and endure the first semester without these things, we’re here to get you ahead of the game! Here are the 10 (non-academic) things you should buy before college.

1. Portable fans

Source: Unsplash@Delaney Van

Many colleges require you to stay in the dorms. One thing no one tells you is that the temperature of your room won’t exactly be in your control. Especially if you’re in a state that stays warm, a portable fan may be the difference between being comfy in your room and not being able to sleep at night.

2. Noise-canceling headphones

Whether in a dorm or a house, you never know what could go on in your living space. Rather than wait for your dorm to throw a random 1am party on the night that you have a big test in the morning, invest in some nice noise-canceling headphones.

3. Desk lamp

Source: Unsplash@Beth Jnr

You may not think that lights will be an issue, but a large, portable desk lamp could really come in handy. Your dorm may not be lit well, or you may be studying after your roommate goes to sleep. You need a warm, functional desk lamp to get through those nights.

4. Pillows

Pillows are shockingly cheap. You can get generic ones for just a couple of bucks. Whether it’s to give your guests some comfort or surround yourself in a fortress of fluff, pillows provide a lot of pleasure for the price.

5. Water filter

Whether you’re in a dorm or renting an off-campus room, water filtration is one of those things you won’t think about until you’re annoyed by it. Even cheap water filters can provide much-needed peace of mind.

6. Umbrella

Source: Unsplash@ewitsoe

You can’t just grab your parents’ umbrella when you need to go out in the rain. Rather than have a bad experience with drenched art supplies, an unprotected laptop, or an important essay, take our advice and get a little umbrella.

7. Whiteboard and markers

You may be thinking you can just use the calendar on your phone, but there’s something about having your week mapped out on the wall that makes everything easier.

8. Backpack

Source: Unsplash@Lina Verovaya

We know it’s tempting to think that you don’t need this. You’re not in grade school anymore! But a good-looking backpack you can just sling on as you board the bus or head to class makes a huge difference.

9. Rugs

College will make you wish for the comforts of home. A nice rug by your bed, covering the cold tiles of the dorm floors, will go a long way to making it feel like “your” room.

10. Printing supplies

A lot of teachers still ask for your assignments to be printed out. You may have a printing lab on campus, but they may require you to bring paper. Or you may be off-campus and need one of your own. You definitely need to work this out before that first paper is due!

The Takeaway

Your first year of college won’t be easy but a few supplies can make a huge difference. We think that you’ll miss all of the things listed above at least once. Conveniently, nothing except the headphones and printer should set you back too much. Rather than wish you had the little things when it’s too late, make them a priority now!

Each month we curate and present subjects and topics that matter to you. We work with Content Publishers in each of the major areas that impact our readers. Find out more about how you as a content publisher can benefit and grow your audience with curated content.

From Lifestyle to Entertainment to Business and Politics, Narrative Matters showcases the content from the top minds and authors in their generation.

Father’s Day Gift Guide From Black-Owned Businesses

Father’s Day Gift Guide From Black-Owned Businesses

Father’s Day is just around the corner and time for shopping is growing perilously short. Depending on the Dad, finding a perfect gift can be much harder than you think which is why you should start looking now. Of course, you can always ask the special man in your life directly what he wants, but when you curate a gift on his behalf, it will be more heartfelt. Instead of sticking to the played-out options of ties, pens, and golf clubs, consider choosing a unique gift from one of the Black-owned brands in our round-up.

When it comes to Father’s Day gifts, the best ones are both sentimental and practical. Think about your dad’s hobbies, habits, and secret desires. Will he love a personalized art print or perhaps is he in need of something to help him relax on the weekends? Perhaps he has been looking for a way to overhaul his wardrobe, whatever you choose, these POC businesses are sure to help you make Father’s Day 2021 one to remember.

Goodee

This website is the brainchild of twin brothers, both of which are innovative Black men with a vision. There are a plethora of sustainable options to choose from for Dad’s or other meaningful men in your life this Father’s Day. Pick up some brightly colored Hammam Dot Towel sets to brighten up their bathroom or treat them to some self-care gifts from the bath and body section. No matter what you choose, the products are guaranteed to be thoughtful, high quality, and smile-inducing for the man you love.

Uncommon Goods

For the man in your life that loves customized creations, Uncommon Goods has a lot to offer. From specialty sugar cubes to create beer cocktails and “mine” liquor flask to luxury grilling utensils and beer-infused barbecue rubs, you are certain to find a gift that makes him smile. All of the products are made and sold by independent proprietors so you can pick and choose where to spend your money responsibly this Father’s Day.

GoldBelly

Nothing says I love you more than food. Most dads are the ones manning the grill on the holidays or bringing in the bacon for the family to enjoy. This year why not treat the food-loving father figure in your life to a truly unique gift. You can order meal kits, fully cooked meals, classes, or even a meal delivery subscription for the man in your life who loves to eat. The founder, Joe Ariel understands the connection that comfort food has with emotions and makes sure that a little bit of heart and soul goes into every delivery.

Golde Superfoods

Everyone wants their day to be as healthy as possible to enjoy everything life has to offer. One way to keep your dad healthy is with delicious superfoods. Eating healthy doesn’t have to be tasteless, and with delights from Golde, you can keep him fit and full this Father’s Day. This brand was created by a woman of color who wanted to find healthier options in the urban environment. You can set your dad up with Matcha mixes to boost his energy or blueberry-flavored drinks to help reduce his stress levels. In addition to superfoods to improve his internal health, they also offer a range of skincare items that will help turn back the hands of time and give him a natural glow.

Golden Grooming Co.

For men of color, skincare and grooming is often just an afterthought. If you want to give your dad a thoughtful gift that he can use all year long, consider picking up one of the bundles. There are beard oils, body washes, moisturizers, and more that are crafted from 100% all-natural products. The items are geared towards men of color though anyone can use them with equally superior performance. If you want to make him laugh, pick up The Grown Ass Man Box which offers a mix of everything the brand has to offer. To top it off, a percentage of their profit to students at HBCUs and other programs that support entrepreneurship for Black youths in underserved communities.

Gift Ideas From The Heart 

Here at The Narrative Matters, we are dedicated to speaking about topics that matter to you and to the culture. We pride ourselves in partnering with Content Publishers to bring topics and areas of interest that impact our readers to the forefront. If you are interested in growing your audience with content that matters, you can find out more here. We cover a range of genres from pop culture, lifestyle, and emerging trends to health, politics, education, and more. 

Photo Credits:

  • https://goldengroomingco.com/
  • golde.co
  • goldbelly.com
  • uncommongoods.com
  • https://www.goodeeworld.com/
7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Negro League

7 Things You Didn’t Know About The Negro League

The Negro Leagues were founded more than a hundred years ago in 1920. In 2006 Congress recognized NLBM as “America’s National Negro Leagues Baseball Museum” which has allowed many past, present, and future generations to view this important part of our history. Finally, in 2020, there was a monumental announcement that the stats from the league would finally be included as part of the official MLB listings. For baseball fans and supporters of the culture everywhere, this was an important step in recognizing the sports talent of people of color. If you are new to baseball or simply a casual fan of Negro League baseball, we have a list of seven little-known facts about the league for you to enjoy.

#1 Original Negro National League Teams

The Negro National League was originally formed in 1920, however, not many people can list the names of the original teams. There were eight teams at the start of the league, all made up of African American and colored players. The list includes:

  • Cuban Stars
  • St. Louis Giants
  • Dayton Marcos
  • Chicago American Giants
  • Indianapolis ABCs
  • Chicago Giants
  • Detroit Stars
  • Kansas City Monarchs

#2 The First Season Of The Negro League Was Canceled

Due to the Chicago Race Riot in 1919, the National Guard occupied the Giants ballpark. As a result, no games could be played on the field. Rube Foster, the mind behind the Negro League and also an accomplished baseball player himself, canceled the first season for lack of play space. That didn’t stop the league from moving forward, and they went on to play their first season on a different date.

#3 Josh Gibson & His Negro League Success

There is an astounding number of Black baseball players that found fame and recognition in the Negro Leagues. Josh Gibson, however, is one of the lesser talked about but highly prolific players who participated in the Negro League. During his career that spanned 17 years, he scored over 800 home runs, 384 of which were accomplished during his time in the Negro League. He also went on to become the Negro League World Series Champion twice and achieved the title of All-Star 12 times.

#4 The Oldest Player In The MLB Was Black

Most sports players start out when they are quite young and tend to retire well before they reach middle age. You might be amazed to know that not only was the oldest player to start out in sports Black but also that he happened to be a part of the Negro League. Leroy Paige, often called Satchel, was one of the most prolific players and pitchers in the history of the Negro League. Unlike most players, he actually debuted as a rookie at the wizened age of 43. He played at the top of his game even over younger players for many years and played his last game just before his 60th birthday. Aside from being the oldest to play in an MLB game, he was the first Black man to pitch in the World Series and the American League.

#5 Negro Leagues Baseball Stamps

It is pretty common for commemorative stamps to be issued that mark special events in American history. While many sports, musical, and presidential stamps among others have been put into print, Negro League Baseball stamps were absent. In 2010, the U.S. Postal Service released stamps that were meant to all-black professional baseball leagues. The pair of stamps released was commemorative and have a face value of 44 cents. At the time of their release, this was the regular postage rate though current stamp prices have increased. The Negro Leagues were also honored with this stamp release and as a bonus, they were issued during the 20th-anniversary celebrations of the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum. One of the commemorative stamps features the image of Rube Foster, who is was the main person credited with the creation of the league in 1920.

#6 The Negro League Was Finally Recognized As A MLB

Although the Negro National League is well known and the stats of the players tabulated amongst baseball enthusiasts, it was not officially recognized as part of the major leagues. In 2020 the Major League Baseball association officially recognized the Negro National League as part of the Major Leagues. The stats and accomplishments of the players have been added to the official roll books which is not only a great honor, but a great sign of respect to the 3,400 players that participated in the sport from 1920 through 1948 as part of the Negro Leagues.

#7 The End of Sports Segregation & HBCU’s Caused The Negro Leagues Downfall

While it is well known that the exclusion of people of color in MLB led to the creation of The Negro Leagues, not many know inclusion was the cause of its downfall. The great depression hit America hard and affected people of color even worse. This caused the Negro League to begin unraveling which was further aided by the absence of Foster as the head of the league. Although the Negro League did rebound for a while under new ownership, HBCU’s and other graduate schools had a bittersweet effect of draining the leagues of many of their most talented players. Once MLB teams started recruiting Black baseball players and other players of color in 1946, the Negro Leagues slowly started losing their top players which eventually led to its disbandment in 1960.

Teaching The Past To Our Future Generations

Here at The Narrative Matters, we are dedicated to speaking about topics that matter to you and to the culture. We pride ourselves in partnering with Content Publishers to bring topics and areas of interest that impact our readers to the forefront. If you are interested in growing your audience with content that matters, you can find out more here. We cover a range of genres from pop culture, lifestyle, and emerging trends to health, politics, education, and more. 

 

Image Sources:

  1. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/575968239814153579/
  2. https://news.wttw.com/2019/07/24/chicago-organizations-commemorate-100th-anniversary-race-riots
  3. https://baseballhall.org/hall-of-famers/gibson-josh
  4. https://baseballhall.org/hall-of-famers/paige-satchel
  5. https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/sdut-negro-leagues-baseball-featured-on-new-stamps-2010jul15-story.html
  6. https://www.wgbh.org/news/commentary/2020/12/30/major-league-baseball-finally-recognizes-negro-league-achievements-it-needs-to-do-more
  7. https://ohiocapitaljournal.com/2020/02/20/on-the-100th-anniversary-of-the-negro-leagues-a-look-back-at-what-was-lost/
Should mental health be a part of the school syllabus?

Should mental health be a part of the school syllabus?

According to the CDC, 7.1 percent of children in the United States have been diagnosed with anxiety. 3.2% have been diagnosed with depression. Relatedly, suicide is now the 3rd highest cause of death in people aged 10-24. The millions of kids who deal with issues that have been culturally stigmatized as “adult-only” problems probably feel lost. Their parents probably don’t know what to do.

Mental health would be a significant addition to a school syllabus to address this issue. If school is intended to prepare kids for life, how can mental health be considered any less than part of that preparation? The answer to how this should be applied in all schools, however, may be a little more complicated.

What kids are being told in school

When kids are young and in school, they receive a lot of conflicting information. They are told never to bully others far more often than how to mentally deal with being bullied. They are constantly bombarded with the idea that tests scores and numbers define their careers for the rest of their lives. However, they are not told how to mentally cope with a bad grade, or deal with the pressure of being defined by a score out of 100.

Physical health is a mandated aspect of schools in the United States, intended to promote self-responsibility and, hopefully, enjoyment of physical activity for a lifetime. In response to how much information and stress modern kids have to process, curricular mental health, in theory, should be used to promote just as much self-responsibility. Kids should enjoy mental activity for a lifetime as well!

But this depends partly on what mental health in a school syllabus ends up looking like.

Source: Unsplash @Dan Meyers

The Good and bad of teaching mental health

How everyone defines “mental health” is different. This could create programs that present conflicting information, potentially creating even more distance between kids and a healthy mental state. To use the PE example, do you have a lasting relationship with enjoying physical activity due to your experiences in PE? Maybe you do, but maybe you don’t.

However, the good outweighs the bad when it comes to teaching mental health, so long as it is utilized properly. Talking about mental health can help kids release a lot of stress, promoting healthy relationships with their peers. Training teachers on how to deal sensitively with mental health issues can also go a long way. Mindfulness, relaxation, and art should be included aspects of more curriculums, giving students a break from the stress of social media and test scores.

Additionally, these programs should not forget to address the mental health of teachers as well. Valuing teachers as part of this new curriculum could go a long way to improving the stress level of their classrooms.

Conclusion

Due to how the statistics are stacking up, dealing with mental health in schools is hardly even a question anymore – it’s a necessity. The way it is handled, however, relies on how we teach mindfulness, how open we are to unique mental health situations, and how the programs are implemented.

Each month we curate and present subjects and topics that matter to you by working with Content Publishers in the major areas that impact our readers. Find out more about how you as a content publisher can benefit and grow your audience with curated content.

From Lifestyle to Entertainment to Business and Politics, Narrative Matters showcases the content from the top minds and authors in their generations.