Coleman Lollar died in 1993 at the shockingly young age of 47. But he squeezed a lot of travel and a lot of writing about travel into that much-too-short life. He edited a magazine for travel agents, was managing editor of
Frequent Flyer magazine from 1980 to 1987 and wrote for
Travel & Leisure and
Frequent Flyer until he died. I worked for him and he worked for me at
Frequent Flyer. We worked together at
T&L. It was never less than a thrill. He was a supple writer with a sharp eye for detail and a real passion for travel. He especially loved Italy. (Italians, he once told me, were as sophisticated as the French thought they were.) And in his penultimate column for
T&L, when he told readers of his impending death, he explained that his only regret was that there were places on the planet he'd never get to visit. -- Joe Brancatelli.
AUGUST 1: COLEMAN LOLLAR, 1946-1993
It may be that Carole King was right when she suggested that "one more song about moving along the highway/can't say much of anything that's new." But in our own self-centered way, we feel profoundly cheated. Now that Coleman didn't make it to Thailand or Nepal or Zanzibar, he can't write us even one more song. And we can't help but believe that Thailand and Nepal and Zanzibar will be forever and irretrievably poorer for never having had Coleman Lollar moving along their highways.
JUNE 1: THIS TIME, LONDON DIDN'T MAKE THE LIST
For me the counterpoint to mortality is mobility. I can tell you unequivocally that New York, Rome and Sydney are my favorite cities. They are the places I am simply not prepared never to see again. Now I can tell you my favorite resorts, too: Amandari in the misty highlands of Bali and the sumptuously surreal Hotel Romazzino on Sardinia's Costa Smeralda.
FEBRUARY 3: AT THE SAHARA'S EDGE IN TUNISIA
The best introduction to Tunisia is a drive. It takes in most of the top sights as you drift through ever-changing landscapes that echo of Hannibal and Julius Caesar, Rommel and Montgomery--and Han Solo and Luke Skywalker since sequences from the original Star Wars
were filmed here.
FEBRUARY 2: THE NEW FULL FARE: MORE PERKS AND A BIG STICK
The nation's commercial airlines are trotting out spiffy new carrots, as well as fearsome-sounding sticks, in their eternal effort to persuade frequent flyers to pay top dollar--and play by the fare rules designed to ensure they have no options but to buy the inflated full-eoach fares.
FEBRUARY 1: THE SOVEREIGN OF THE SKIES
It was one of those jolting, melancholy moments that overwhelm you even when you know full well what you’re going to see. Visiting New York recently, I walked over to Park Avenue and looked toward the summit of what had been the Pan Am Building. Sure enough, the big blue logo with its stylized globe was gone. I could barely make out the workers some 750 feet up, preparing to install the MetLife sign that would proclaim the building’s new name.