Anyone watching Bourdain’s show on the CNN? I have been watching his “Without Reservations” program for years and liked most of the episodes. With the new show on CNN, while some episodes are very interesting, I have some mixed fillings about many of them. The show is much more scripted now and has very few events that didn’t go exactly as planned. It just somehow lost the flavor of a less budgeted production, which I assume with CNN power and presence they can pull more resources into each place to bring all logistics together.
Some episodes are too on the political side – I guess this is CNN influence on what angle they want to push the show. Like, the latest one about Russia. Pretty much entire hour was about corruption of government power with couple visits to super fancy restaurants that I bet 99.9% of Russians never heard of and it is not how they eat. I was hoping that after short visit to Moscow or St Petersburg, they would go to some other Russian cities and show how the rest of the Russia outside of glitzy and cosmopolitan Moscow lives, but it never happened. At least segment about St Petersburg “communal” apartments was interesting. It is very hard not to bring up politics when you talk about Russia, especially with all the latest events related to Ukraine, and it is fine, I just didn’t see anything else outside of the stereotypical – lots of vodka and caviar – views. I bet 99.9% of them don’t eat caviar on a regular basis either. I haven’t been to Russia for almost 20 years and was kind of interested to see what they are going to show, as I was curious to learn about new “parts unknown”, and was slightly disappointed in this episode. The information about corruption was nothing new to me, as it is pretty much all over the news, unless of course you live under the rock, but maybe CNN’s target audience are folks who live under the rock and have no clue about anything else in the world.
Also, couple episodes ago there was show about southern France, all pretty much around some famous chefs from Michelin starred restaurants. Who cares. One of the most boring episodes ever. At least to me. I’m sure he finds it very interesting to be in that company and eat at all those fancy restaurants and at their private gatherings. For me as a viewer it gave nothing, no desire to go any of those places, no new inspiration about “parts unknown”. I just hope that this show will not lose the adventurous angle. Otherwise it will start losing my attention.
OK, enough complaining about not important stuff and wasting time, lets see something eye pleasing.
Jackson Lake by Kayak
While visiting Grand Tetons National park, do plan to spend a few hours on the Jackson lake, preferably kayaking or canoeing around its shore line. You will be treated with none stop gorgeous views of the mountains, occasional wildlife and if you put some energy and just go one or two extra turns, you will be all alone, without any other tourists or kayakers insight. And, of course, watch out for mama grizzlies!