Brazilian CockpitThere were plenty of shenanigans in cockpits this week. It all sounds kind of cute and playful, until you realize that, as a traveler, you’re putting your life in the hands of these folks and they’re not always operating in the most professional manner. Let’s start with the most stupid of the incidents – The Aviation Herald’s Simon Hradecky reports that Brazilian authorities are investigating an incident in which a Brazilian pop star was allowed sit in the captain’s seat while the plane was in flight. “Latino” sat at the controls (the plane was on autopilot) and posed for photos. The plane landed safely, but there was trouble on the ground for both pilots, who have been fired.

Meanwhile, an Air India pilot was locked out of the cockpit after he went to the restroom and the door jammed. Really? USA Today reports that the co-pilot was forced to make an unscheduled landing so the problem could be fixed.

Here’s some good news coming from that room at the front of the plane – pilots are now texting while flying. What?!!? You say. Don’t worry – this is not like an automobile driver texting; this is a good thing. The Wall Street Journal’s Scott McCartney reports that airlines are embracing more instantaneous forms of communication with air traffic control.

We’ve told you about the latest strain of Avian Flu over the last few weeks, and now the Associated Press is reporting there’s another threat of a respiratory epidemic, this one in Europe. The coronavirus related to SARS has spread to France. The World Health Organization is advising health officials around the world to be on their toes.

The U.S. Travel Association reports that travel in the States is worth $2 trillion to the U.S. economy. That’s a lot.

When retirees move away to spend their golden years in a foreign country, a significant consideration is the healthcare system in their destination country (or at least it should be). Expat Health’s Bill Cariker takes a look at some top expat destinations that offer healthcare for as little as $30 a month!

At Vagabondish, Amanda Kendle offers five really simple ways to stay healthy as you travel the world. She does not mention eating insects, but the folks at CNN do. They have details of a new United Nations report that suggests that eating insects might just solve a lot of the world’s food and health challenges.

For people looking for a great hiking challenge, here’s great news. Gadling’s Kraig Becker reports on a new 350-mile hiking trail that will open next year in Africa, and allow hikers to walk from south Sudan to western Uganda.

And, finally, we told you recently about the world’s top spiritual travel destinations, obviously including the Vatican. While you’re there waiting for your audience with the Pope, you might want to pick up this cool souvenir – a pinup calendar of priests.

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About The Author

John Miller is president of ScribeWise. He is an avid traveler and web-surfing junkie. Visit www.scribewise.com.

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