A trial cruiseThe O. J. Simpson trial...


A trial cruise

The O. J. Simpson trial will be the theme of a Los Angeles to Baja (Mexico) sail Sept. 8-11 aboard Carnival Cruise Line's MS Holiday.

Passengers will talk one-on-one with legal experts, reporters, authors and others with firsthand trial experience. Expected guests on board include ex-juror Michael Knox, Loyola Law School professor Stan Goldman and civil rights activist and attorney, Melanie Lomax.

Rates based on double occupancy, not including airfare or port tax, are $469 per person for inside cabins and $519 per person for outside cabins. For more information, contact your local travel agent or call (800) 356-3330.

Amtrak just made it a lot easier for its riders to reach some key travel destinations. The railroad now has buses to meet and transport arriving passengers to the Foxwoods Resort Casino in southeast Connecticut and to New York airports. The shuttles from Pennsylvania Station to John F. Kennedy International Airport depart from Pennsylvania Station on the hour between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. and cost $13. Transportation to LaGuardia Airport is also available for $10.

Meanwhile, passengers arriving in New London, Conn., on Amtrak's eight daily northbound and eight southbound trains can board buses to the popular casino at Ledyard, northeast of New London. The bus will make hotel stops en route for a one-way $2 fare. Passengers getting off at a hotel are entitled to continue the trip to Foxwoods at no extra charge, once they have unpacked.

For further information, call Amtrak at (800) 872-7245.

Air safety

Acting on recommendations by the government, many airlines have set up new programs intended to improve aviation safety.

Last month the Federal Aviation Administration said that after an industrywide meeting on safety in January airlines had started evaluation programs and 18 carriers had set up safety offices with a mandate to provide independent oversight of their own operations.

At the time of the meeting, fewer than a third of the 161 airlines in the United States had such programs. About 66 airlines have them now and 67 others have said they will introduce them, the FAA said.

Although it did not name the airlines that had established such programs, the FAA did say that the largest carriers had long had such systems in place.

Indeed, major airlines have trumpeted announcements in recent months about their plans to improve safety that go above and beyond safety evaluation programs.

United Airlines, for example, has started new training to teach pilots how to recover from unusual and extreme situations.

High on height for mind and maturity

Does a visit to the mountains make us smarter and help us live longer?

A new book, "The Forever Mind: Eight Ways to Unleash the Power of Your Mature Mind" by Jacuelyn Wonder and Priscilla Donovan (William Morrow & Co., $20), indicates that 75 percent of those who have lived to an advanced age -- 100 plus -- believe that living in high altitudes contributes to mental activity. According to the authors, even Albert Einstein and Irving Berlin embraced the mountain theory of rejuvenation.

A report by the High Altitude Survey Studies in Keystone, Colo., indicates that while 40 percent of those who visit at high lTC altitudes experience incapacitating sickness because of a decrease in oxygen, when travelers return to the flatlands they report increased energy and alertness.

So, where are you going for a vacation this year?

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