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Her World

It's the Little Things That Count

March 30, 1986|JUDITH MORGAN | Morgan, of La Jolla, is a nationally known magazine and newspaper writer

From a travel bag of odds and inns:

Never put on lipstick while driving on a cobblestone street. The result is the same as putting on lipstick at the dentist's office while you're still numb with Novocain. Both can tickle your nose.

When I am grumpy there is no better place to wake up than in Copenhagen. The Danish word for continental breakfast is morgenmad .

Bathrooms can seem far between in travels. Your best bets are where tourists go: hotels, railroad stations, museums, airports, department stores. Facilities of some sort will be available where coffee, tea or beer is served. I have a letter from a Bakersfield woman whose two favorite bathrooms in the world are "the ladies room at I. Magnin in San Francisco, with its green and white marble floor, and the one-holer in Bhutan at Tigers Nest, where the Himalayan view falls away for 3,000 feet."

A Welcome Notion

If you return home with foreign coins in your pocket, give them to youngsters as show-and-tell treasures, or start an office stash of change for others who travel, or slip them into envelopes and file them for future trips. Leftover foreign currency can be packaged prettily into going-away gifts, a welcome notion since planes can arrive when airport banks are closed and money is needed for transportation, tips, telephone or newspaper. Tours may cover essential costs, but they won't pay for gewgaws or chewing gum.

Sewing Kits

Never throw away a hotel sewing kit. As soon as you do, you'll get a splinter and need that needle. My purses, luggage and life are scattered with rumpled kits; each brings a twinge of memory. When visiting a ranch recently, I was assisted in minor surgery by a black-and-gold packet from Rothay Manor in the English Lake Country (phone: Ambleside 2331).

Emergency Handled

After removing the splinter, I cleaned up my act, then used Rothay's pink thread to reattach a navy button to a plaid Pendleton shirt. Perhaps the English anticipated the moment. Printed on the flap was "Emergency Mending Kit."

Two inns of special pleasure: Santiago de Compostela's Inn of the Catholic Kings, built as a royal hospital 500 years ago by Ferdinand and Isabella, rests with grace in the green hills of Galicia in northwest Spain. Sick pilgrims stayed there in the Middle Ages when they came to the great cathedral on the town square. Tired pilgrims still seek haven behind the massive stone walls and ornately sculpted entrance. Cool patios and dining rooms offer comfortable refuge from sun and touring. Antiques loom in shadowy niches; restrooms sparkle.

A new arrival on the old Western stage is Arizona's Hotel Vendome, built in Prescott in 1917 and freshly restored to its brown brick beauty. The two-story inn has 21 rooms, with transoms over the doors. The original call box was found in the basement and now is behind the front desk and in use to wake up guests.

The Vendome is on South Cortez, a block from the lustrous cottonwoods and maples of Courthouse Square. It's the kind of place Wyatt Earp would have stayed when his boots were clean.

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