The Real-Life Places Behind Agatha Christie’s Murder Mysteries

Her fictional holidays may be fraught with murder, but the Queen of Crime sure knew how to pick out a vacation destination.

In the forward of her novel, Death on the Nile, Agatha Christie wrote, “If detective stories are ‘escape literature’ (and why shouldn’t they be!) the reader can escape to sunny skies and blue water as well as to crime in the confines of an armchair.” And what could be more welcome right now than an escape–any escape, even one that kicks off with a murder. So why not take inspiration from the suspects, killers, and sleuths that fill the pages of Christie’s classic mysteries, and plan a getaway so perfect that not even the occasional homicide will be able to put a damper on your vacation.

7 Cursed Objects Around the World Guaranteed to Ruin Your Life

Don’t look into the mirror while reading this list.

Y’know, cursed objects are a funny thing. And by, “funny” I mean terrifying because just looking at them (not to mention touching) feels forbidden. Heck, I had shivers down my spine just writing this roundup. But, alas, I made it through the other side of my inquiries with my sanity still intact, so I think you’re OK to read this. Actually, one might even consider this essential reading, as in, you should know what you’re getting into and where you’re getting into it if you either choose to run to or steer clear of the items below. Case in point–when I started my research, I was planning on mentioning a painting called, “The Hands That Resist Him.” I won’t link it here, and you’ll soon find out why. It depicts a little boy standing next to a doll—who seems to be holding some sort of object I can’t quite make out—with hollow eyes. The two are poised in front of a window and behind them, there are hands pressed all over the glass. It’s unnerving to say the least, and the longer I looked at it, the more uncomfortable I got. And then came the digging. Turns out, the depiction was completed in 1974 by an artist named Bill Stoneham, who based it off of a photograph his parents captured of him when he was a child. Soon after Stoneham finished it, it entered a gallery where it was reviewed by a Los Angeles Times art critic. Later, The Godfather actor John Marley swooped in and scooped it up. The painting’s dark fame was just getting off the ground, though. Within six years, the gallery owner, the art critic, and Marley all died. Before he passed away, however, Marley sold the painting–it wouldn’t be seen for 26 years, popping up on eBay in 2000. The then-owners claimed that while they initially found the work to be quite good, it was much more than it appeared to be. The four-year-old daughter of the family came to her father one morning and said that she’d seen the doll and the boy from the painting fighting during the night. To quell her worries, the father reassured her and even went so far as to set up a motion-sensitive camera that faced the art. However, he claimed in the eBay post that when he looked back at the footage, he saw the boy crawl from the painting, forced out by the doll whose mysterious hand-held object had morphed into a gun. The painting was eventually sold to a gallery owner who placed it in her establishment in Grand Rapids. I don’t really believe in ghosts until I do (if you get my flow), and my Internet has gone down several times since viewing “The Hands That Resist Him,” so I refuse to include it in this list (I had to draw the line somewhere!) because I care about you, reader. Anyway, go forth and, just for good measure, sage the area in which you’re reading this afterward.

Will We Be Able to Travel This Fall? Heres What the Experts Say

Buckle up—it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

There’s still so much we don’t know about COVID-19, except that it’s probably not going away any time too soon. We’ll likely still be dealing with the coronavirus pandemic on some level come fall. What that looks like exactly, in general, and in terms of travel, is still anyone’s guess —but that doesn’t mean we can’t ask the experts for their input, insight, and advice in between refreshing our browsers for the latest travel news, right? We spoke to three U.S.-based infectious disease experts to get the scoop on different scenarios we might face this fall when it comes to travel, coronavirus, and a cure.

10 Genius Ways to Repurpose Your Travel Gear Currently Collecting Dust

How DARE it just sit there taking up space, a forced reminder of a bygone era!?!

I resent the numerous suitcases I have that are currently lying around my house taking up space. Usually to see such items is a joy, knowing they will be stuffed and chucked around the world, gobbling up souvenirs, treats, and memories to take home. Since I use my luggage so regularly I never relegate them to deep storage. But right now, they are pissing me off. They’re just sitting there! Taking up a lot of room! And then there’s all this other stuff! The stuff that gets packed into the suitcase to facilitate the ease of travel! What am I going to use this gear for stuck at home? I’m so glad you asked.