I love busy streets, my matcha oat milk latte, and crowds full of people all on their daily missions. To put it simply, I'm a city person through and through. This past year and a half, I've seen my city go eerily quiet and slowly rise back to its bustling self. I wouldn't want to live anywhere else, but I'm always down for a short vacation.

When my friend Emily said she had a fantastic escape planned for us, my mind instantly jumped to beaches, resorts, maybe even another gorgeous city (Paris, please!). But then she sent me the link to Getaway. As I scrolled through pictures of trees, cabins, and more trees, my heart rate shot up.

"cAmPiNg? 😨😨😨" I immediately panic-texted her.

Emily called to ease my mind. She said it was like camping, but I'd still have all my precious amenities: queen-sized bed, private toilet, shower (hot water included), kitchen, and AC. Okay, I thought she might be able to get me there — maybe.

But then I remembered it's still NATURE! That means bugs, little to no cell reception, and not being able to walk five minutes to my local store when I need something at midnight. I started to put up a fight, but Emily said this would be the best weekend ever. She's my woodsy friend (we all have one). So I decided to bite my tongue and go with it.

We left early Saturday morning, and I will say the drive was nice. Getaway Outposts are all within a two-hour drive from major cities. I was still close to home but far enough that it felt like an adventure. We pulled up to our campsite, and I admit it was quite picturesque: a modern wooden cabin with a fire pit and Adirondack chairs out front.

Inside was just as beautiful, the queen-bed with gorgeous white sheets, a kitchen stocked with pots and pans, not to mention the bathroom with fresh towels, which is 90% of why I agreed to come. Then the time came to put my phone down and "just relax," as Emily kept telling me, so I took a deep breath and placed my cell phone in the lockbox and got ready to embrace nature (or at least die trying).

By the time we packed up to leave, I was totally shocked that I'd had such an amazing time at our Getaway. Once I got over my initial hesitation, we took awe-inspiring ... hikes? No. To be honest, they were rambling walks. We played monster Uno games with the deck in our cabin, caught up on reading, and just chilled by the fire while toasting s'mores. I didn't realize how stressed I was until Getaway helped me genuinely unwind.

Plus, we weren't as isolated as I imagined we'd be. We were a short drive from an adorable local town, and like a thoughtful concierge, Getaway's site recommended museums, cute ice cream shops, and other attractions. It was like I got to play a part in one of my favorite small-town movies, and the change of pace was refreshing.

I hate to say it, but Emily was right. Getaway may not have been my first choice, but I actually can't wait to go back. The air was so crisp, and I realized I'd forgotten that clean, garbage-free scent that comes when you escape the city. I woke up the first morning, and it hit me that it was the first time in years I hadn't fallen asleep to the sounds of traffic.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still a city person and prefer there to be more people than trees in my day-to-day life. But getting out into nature every once in a while never hurt anybody.

I can't wait to head back to a Getaway outpost and now I'm recommending it to all my city friends — even the "city or bust" urbanites like myself.

Grab your outdoorsy friend and take the leap with Getaway. Your city will be waiting for you when you get back — I promise!

Plan Your Next Adventure With Getaway!

I only saw my kid sister, Nandi, a handful of times over what felt like a decade-long year. Sure, we Zoom on weekends and text all day, on-the-daily, but the lack of seeing her in real life called for some serious sister time.

Spring — my favorite season — was fast approaching, so Nandi booked us a four-day stay at the closest Getaway outpost. No kids, no cooking — I'm sick to death of my stove. Nothing but peace in the great outdoors.

Getaway combines the best parts of camping without having to rough it. With Getaway, you still get huge, stunning views — but from your very own handcrafted hideaway.

Only about a 90-minute drive away, they're close to home. They have three outposts in Texas: one outside Houston, one outside Dallas, and one outside Austin.

Here are my three fave things I did during our Excellent Spring Getaway at the Dallas outpost:

Kick Back & Spring Ahead

What was on the schedule? Absolutely NOTHING! Phones stashed in the thoughtfully provided lockbox, Nandi and I were free to live in the moment. It must have been noon when we got up. Sunlight filled the cabin and the outside world. Nandi went for a walk while I relaxed with a big ol' mug of chamomile tea as the stress of life melted away…

After lunch, we worked on a jumbo jigsaw puzzle I brought along. Puzzles are a family ritual and soon we were sharing memories of Dad's camping expeditions back in the day.

We both agreed that if those campsites had been like Getaway cabins — with their freshly made, comfy queen-sized beds; AC and heat; kitchenette with a two-burner stove, mini-fridge, and staples like salt and pepper, even olive oil — we'd have enjoyed ourselves a whole lot more!

Lunch was a baguette, yummy goat cheese, and a simple stew I prepped at home. I checked out Getaway's selection of books, board games, even a deck of cards.

A twilight walk-and-a-talk through the trees brought home how much we'd both needed this escape from the stress and routines of our daily lives.

Adventures In Wonderland

Taking a cue from Nandi, I stretched out using the picnic table and took a solitary stroll in the quiet freshness of the spring morning. I let my mind roam as I watched the sunrise. When was the last time I saw that in the city?

After breakfast, we decided to get in touch with nature with a long hike on the Wolfpen Bike and Hike trail.

Before arriving at Getaway, I had a look at some of the nearby places we could explore. The Getaway posts in Texas have so many beautiful trails nearby: Cedar Creek Lake and Beaver Slide Nature park at the Dallas outpost, the Blue Hole and the Cyprus Creek Trail outside Austin, and Lake Conrow and Washington on the Brazos Area Trail near Houston. There are even fun activities like creameries and wineries near some of the Texan outposts.

The nearby trails are suited for a rigorous three-hour hike or a leisurely stroll in the woods. We actually took a longer walk than intended — that's how lovely it was! All of the trails are within 40 minutes from the cabin, too.

After a hot shower (using Getaway's complimentary shampoo & conditioner) I dried off with a fluffy towel. Then we spent the late afternoon — you'll never guess — talking. It was a real heart-to-heart. Zoom doesn't even come close.

Lost in The Night Sky

We spent the crisp evenings enjoying gooey s'mores around a crackling campfire, listening to the sounds of nature. Each night, Nandi and I lingered out front of our cozy cabin — lounging in Adirondack chairs, savoring the moment, and raising a glass of Sancerre, "to sisters."

I gazed at the scatter of stars above and noticed that Getaway's peace and quiet was exactly what I needed to hear my own thoughts. It's spring. All is fresh, verdant, green. It's a new day, a new season.

Then, Nandi and I chatted and yapped and laughed till we headed into the golden warmth of our cabin and I drifted off to a deep-deep sleep.

Handcrafted tiny cabins, nestled in the middle of nature, starting at $99 a night. Getaway's outposts are all over the country, with three outposts in Texas state: about a two-hour drive from Austin, Dallas, and Houston.

For your rejuvenating spring trip, I'd highly recommend Getaway. With at least 50 to 150 feet between cabins, they're socially distant places by design. With contactless check-in and check-out, Getaway texts a lock code the day your stay begins. Simply drive right up and make yourself at home.

If we've learned anything from the last year, it's that the virtual world is convenient but the actual world is priceless. So book your bonfire. Book your reconnect. Book your Getaway getaway. And don't forget to pack light for spring.

Plan Your Spring Adventure With Getaway!

I only saw my kid sister, Nandi, a handful of times over what felt like a decade-long year. Sure, we Zoom on weekends and text all day, on-the-daily. But the lack of seeing her in real life called for some serious sister time.

Spring — my favorite season — was fast approaching, so Nandi booked us a four-day stay at the closest Getaway outpost. No kids, no cooking cause I'm sick to death of my stove. Nothing but peace and the great outdoors.

Getaway combines the best parts of camping without having to rough it. We'll still get huge, stunning views — but from our very own handcrafted hideaway. Only a 90-minute drive away, they're close to home so airplanes, no crowds — just a safe, quiet place to unplug, relax, and revive.

Here are my three fave things I did during our Excellent Spring Getaway:

Kick Back & Spring Ahead

What was on the schedule? Absolutely NOTHING! Phones stashed in the thoughtfully provided lockbox, Nandi and I were free to live in the moment. It must have been noon when we got up. Sunlight filled the cabin and the outside world. Nandi went for a walk while I relaxed with a big 'ol mug of chamomile tea as the stress of city living melted away…

After lunch, we worked on a jumbo jigsaw puzzle I brought along. Puzzles are a family ritual and soon we were sharing memories of Dad's camping expeditions back in the day.

We both agreed that if those campsites had been like Getaway cabins — with their freshly made comfy queen-sized beds, AC and heat, kitchenette with a two-burner stove, mini-fridge, and staples like salt and pepper, even olive oil — we'd have enjoyed ourselves a whole lot more!

Inside Getaway cabin kitchen

Lunch was a baguette, yummy goat cheese, and a simple stew I prepped at home. I checked out Getaway's selection of books, board games, even a deck of cards.

A twilight walk-and-a-talk through the trees brought home how much we'd both needed this escape from the stress and routines of our daily lives.

Adventures In Wonderland

Taking a cue from Nandi, I stretched out using the picnic table and took a solitary stroll in the quiet freshness of the spring morning. I let my mind roam as I watched the sunrise. When was the last time I saw that in the city?

After breakfast, we decided to get in touch with nature with a long hike. The nearby trails are suited for a rigorous three-hour hike or a leisurely stroll in the woods. We actually took a longer walk than intended — that's how lovely it was!

hiking trail in the woods

After a hot shower — using Getaway's complimentary shampoo & conditioner — I dried off with a fluffy towel. Then we spent the late afternoon — you'll never guess — talking. It was a real heart-to-heart. Zoom doesn't even come close.

Lost In The Night Sky

We spent the crisp evenings enjoying gooey s'mores around a crackling campfire, listening to the sounds of nature. Each night, Nandi and I lingered out front of our cozy cabin — lounging in Adirondack chairs, savoring the moment, and raising a glass of Sancerre, "to sisters."

I gazed at the scatter of stars above and noticed that Getaway's peace and quiet was exactly what I needed to hear my own thoughts. It's spring. All is fresh, verdant, green. It's a new day, a new season.

Then, Nandi and I chatted and yapped and laughed till we headed into the golden warmth of our cabin and I drifted off to a deep-deep sleep.

Handcrafted tiny cabins, nestled in the middle of nature, starting at $99 a night. Getaway's outposts are all over the country: about a two-hour drive from major cities like Austin, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Pittsburgh & Cleveland, Portland, Charlotte, Atlanta, Boston, New York, and Washington, DC.

For your rejuvenating spring trip, I'd highly recommend Getaway. With at least 50 to 150 feet between cabins, they're socially distant places by design. With contactless check-in and check-out, Getaway texts a lock code the day your stay begins. Simply drive right up and make yourself at home.

If we've learned anything from the last year, it's that the virtual world is convenient but the actual world is priceless. So book your bonfire. Book your reconnect. Book your Getaway getaway. And don't forget to pack light for spring.

Plan Your Spring Adventure With Getaway!

Selena Gomez has already won a VMA, a Radio Disney Music Award, and a Teen Choice Award this year, and it looks like she may be up for another trophy. Only it's the one you do not want to get.

 

In Getaway—which was released in theaters in late August—Gomez plays "The Kid," a techie helping Ethan Hawke's character save his wife from kidnappers. In spite of its A-list co-leads, Getaway totally, totally bombed. It's currently rocking a 3% on Rotten Tomatoes, making it the worst reviewed movie of the year. Quoth Peter Travers of Rolling Stone:

"For 89 minutes that feel like 89 hours, cars speed out of control and crash doing only PG-13 damage. The damage to your brain while watching it is incalculable."

Tell us what you really think.

Getaway has "Razzie" written all over it. Fear not, Selena! Kelly Clarkson has one and she turned out just fine.

[EuroNews.com]

The music video for Selena Gomez & the Scene's 2011 hit "Love You Like a Love Song" starts with Gomez performing the song in a karaoke club. She begins as "normal" Selena, just a regular teenage girl who just happens to be rich and famous. But as she gets further into the song, Gomez transforms. First she's a '70s disco babe. Then she's Marie Antoinette. Then she's a vampire. (We think.)

As music videos go, it's a good one—the Selenators voted it Selena Gomez's greatest career moment—but Selena's shifting identities are illuminating in a different sense: For a teen star who's been incredibly successful in music, TV and film, we have remarkably little idea who Selena Gomez is as an artist.

Think of Selena's contemporaries. Demi Lovato has the best voice in the game, and an inspiring comeback story. Taylor Swift has the love life, and the hits it inspires. Miley Cyrus has the struggle to escape Hannah Montana. Justin Bieber is the boy emperor. One Direction is remaking A Hard Day's Night for the Internet generation.

What's Selena Gomez's "thing"? It's hard to say. She's got elements of those familiar storylines to her, but they never quite add up. She has a child-star past, but seems less conflicted about it than Miley and Demi. She has a solid musical career, but hasn't had a massive culture-wide hit the way Taylor or Bieber have. "Come & Get It" might end up being that—it's lurking right outside the top 5—but while it's a great song, it's not a great Selena Gomez song; it was written by Rihanna's team, and it shows.

For a while, it looked like "Spring Breakers" could provide a hook: Selena would leave Disney behind and go full bore into a life of Day-Glo hedonism. But then the film came out, and all everybody could talk about was James Franco. Selena isn't even in the movie for most of the good parts—her character hops a bus home halfway through, and is never seen again. It's a fine performance, and she gets out with her dignity intact, but we're left with the nagging notion that she was playing it safe, refusing to follow the film into the deep end.

And so Selena keeps working, a star without an image. (When we write about her, it's almost always in the context of somebody else.) But there are two signs of hope on the horizon. Selena's continuing her film career with this summer's Getaway, in which she plays a carjacker who teams up with Ethan Hawke to rescue his kidnapped wife. From the trailer the film looks to be the kind of enjoyable B-movie the studios don't make much anymore, the kind that won't make $300 million or win a boatload of Oscars, but could catapult a young actress to the next level of movie stardom if everything goes right:

The second, of course, is Stars Dance, Selena's first album without the Scene, arriving next month. Could it be for Gomez what Unbroken was for Demi Lovato, a chance to re-brand herself as an adult artist with her own unique vision? We'll find out in July, but in the mean time, we want to hear from you, Selenators. What do you like most about Selena Gomez?