For Love of Monet
When financier Morton Fleischer described to the Scottsdale, Ariz., Chamber of Commerce how his new corporate headquarters would be museum-like, the local paper ran the headline "Fleischer Museum Comes to Scottsdale." "So we thought, why not?" says Fleischer's wife, Donna, director of the museum. They had been passionately collecting American impressionist works from the California school for 10 years and displaying them at their corporate headquarters, so they had the right stuff.
Inspired by French impressionism, California impressionism flourished from the turn of the century into the '20s and included such artists as Guy Rose ("Mist Over Point Lobos"), Franz A. Bischoff and Donna Norine Schuster, who were drawn to the state by the quality of light, the climate and the scenery. The Fleischer Museum, which opened last summer at 17207 N. Perimeter Dr. in Scottsdale, features lily pads, luscious landscapes and liberal access: It's open seven days a week, and free. For more information, call 602-585-3108. Global View
The world isn't flat, but that's often the way we see it. For a completely different view of the world, try the Mapparium in Boston, a 30-foot-in-diameter stained-glass globe you can walk right into, stand inside and peruse. You enter in the Old World, just east of Africa, cross the glass bridge to the New World and exit just west of the Americas. With the ocean below your feet, it's like walking on water.
Built in the early '30s, the Mapparium presents the world as it was then. Inside, the acoustics are amazing -- with a whisper chamber and surround sound. Where else could you tour the world -- inside out -- in less than 10 minutes? The Mapparium is inside the Christian Science Publishing Society headquarters, on Massachusetts Avenue near Symphony Hall in Boston; hours are 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For information: 617-450-3790. The Night Train to Moscow
Now that it's back together again, the whole of Germany can be crossed by train, and the service continues on to Moscow. Leaving weekly from Cologne on Sundays at 6:32 p.m., it arrives in Moscow at 11:57 a.m. Tuesday. A one-way coach ticket with sleeping accommodations costs about $250. Call GermanRail, 212-308-3102.
TRAVEL TRIVIA How deep is the ocean -- the Pacific, that is -- at its deepest? ANSWER BELOW TRIVIA ANSWER: ABOUT SEVEN MILES, AT THE MARIANA TRENCH SOUTHEAST OF GUAM.END NOTES FREE (OR ALMOST) FOR THE ASKING
Just try and find those numbers for state tourist offices when you need them. Are they listed as travel councils, offices of industry and trade, departments of commerce or just plain tourist information? A new brochure listing tourist offices in 56 states and territories has been produced by the Travel Industry Association of America as part of the Discover America program. For a copy of "A Listing of State and Territorial Travel Offices of the United States," send a SASE to Discover America, 2 Lafayette Center, 1133 21st St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20036.