Subject: Phoning Home
Hi Ziners,

We're spending two weeks in Germany and Prague next month, and I'm looking for an inexpensive way to phone home to Oregon - if I need to. I don't plan on phoning home, but would like to have an "emergency" plan in place.

We only get to travel to Europe once every other year, so I don't want to buy an expensive new mobile phone. I am not real confident in my ability to figure out the German/Czech phone card systems, and I wonder if they even have working public phones there - it's pretty tough to find any in Oregon nowadays, outside of an airport.

Somebody suggested that I check into Skype. I did, but it looks like you have to have a computer to use it. I don't travel with a computer, but I like to use Internet cafes for e-mailing when we travel. What are the chances that I can use Skype in an internet cafe?

The only other thing I can think of is to buy a prepaid phone card here before I leave, if I can find one that will work in Europe. Would that be smarter than buying one there?

You all are much more experienced than I am - what's my best option for phoning home if I need to?

--Dave Votaw in sunny (!!!) Salem, Oregon