It’s October…one of my favorite months. For starters, college football is in full swing. Baseball is in its play-off period. European football has gotten over its opening schedule shockers, and ice hockey starts up at the end of the month. It’s also one of my favorite seasons for traveling. For a few years, I took the month of October off from work and traveled, and those were some of my best trips. The weather is nice …cool, but not cold…surprising warm days mixed in, and Halloween…my favorite holiday of the year.
So to celebrate my favorite month of the year, I’ll be featuring some of my favorite cemeteries in the world. I LOVE, love, love, visiting cemeteries. [and I love cats…any coincidence that cats like to hang out a cemeteries….I think not] They fascinate me [cemeteries not cats]… Fancy ones like Pere LaChaise in Paris and Recoleta in Buenos Aires. Solemn ones like Arlington National just outside Washington DC and the Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague. Old ones like Magnolia in Charleston, SC and Bonaventure in Savannah, Georgia. Eclectic ones like merry cemetery in Săpânţa, Romania, and the Mayan cemetery in Xcaret. Odd ones like the crypt of the Capuchin monks in Rome… None of it matters. If I hear of an ‘interesting’ cemetery…whether its old and crumbly or happy and bright or austere and serene, I’m there.
Some of my favorite final resting places from around the world
1. Pere-LeChaise Cemetery, Paris France
I spent a day in Paris. I know what you are saying…’Only one day, impossible’, but it’s true. I watched fireworks at the Eiffel Tower and hung out with the dead. Paris is awesome.
2. Recoleta Cemetery, Buenos Aires, Argentina
years ago, I was in Buenos Aires. It was my birthday. Instead of doing something fancy like going to a tango show, I went to Recoleta and hung out with the dead. And the cats.
3. Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, VA, USA
I stand up straighter and walk a little taller when I visit Arlington. It’s impressive, quiet, and simple. American soldiers. Clean white tombstones. A Marine guard. It doesn’t get more solemn than this.
4. Jewish Cemetery, Prague, Czech Republic
On a snowy day in January 2013, I visited the Jewish Cemetery in Prague. I think I was the only living thing around.
5. Magnolia Cemetery, Charleston, South Carolina
Southern cemeteries are awesome. Spanish moss hanging down gives everything a spooky appeal, and the humidity makes everything rust and age rather quickly.
6. Bonaventure Cemetery, Savannah, Georgia
They say Bonaventure is haunted. If you go there at night, it certainly feels that way.
7. Mayan Cemetery, Xcaret, Mexico
Confession time: this is a fake cemetery. It’s a creation of what a lot of Mexican cemeteries do on El Dia de los Muertos….this one is a lot cleaner, though. The Mayans didn’t actually bury their dead.
8. Merry Cemetery, Săpânţa, Romania
It’s happy. It’s bright. It’s weird. Go there. See for yourself. These dead peeps are having the time of their lives.
9. Crypt of the Capuchin Monks, Rome, Italy
Eerie. Spooky…Bone-chilling…Fascinating…I wonder if the Monks know their bones are being used as decorations. I’m not a Monk, but I’d love to donate my femur [you know, once I’m done with it] for a clock or better yet, the handle of the scythe of the Grim Reaper
10. Monumental Cemetery, Milan, Italy
Morbid statues. Fascinating pageantry. Marble slabs of decaying flowers. Ingenious.
11. Hanging Coffins, Sagada, Philippines
If heaven is up, and hell is down, wouldn’t you rather be hanging on the side of a cliff instead of buried in a hole?
12. Novodevichy Cemetery, Moscow, Russia
Boris Yeltsin, Anton Chekhov, Gherman Titov…I’m a bit fascinated with Russia and the dead Russians. If you can’t qualify for the Kremlin, Novodevichy is a fantastic second choice.
13. Hallstat Ossuary, Hallstat, Austria
Oooh…more bones….since I’m donating my femur to the Monk, the Ossuary can have my skull, but only if they paint a pretty design on it.