Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Hershey chocolates

So, Hershey, PA ia quaint little country town and they give out free chocolate so I've finally found my retirement location....just gotta save the money.

The Tropicana Hotel on the boardwalk in Atlantic city...they provided a lovely place to rest my head and loose my money at the poker table.

August and I are doing the Smithsonian in DC right now...so much to see that our heads are spinning. The biggest problem we're having is choosing from the gazillions of restaurants.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

New York

A lovely corn beef on rye with a deli pickle is a clue to this posting's location...

So, here I am in New York. Pretty cool place but I'm worn out from walking for four days. If you can't guess, this is a photo from Brooklyn of the Brooklyn Bridge and Manhattan.

The first time I walked through 'the Park' it was rainy and grey but on my last day I got lucky and spent some time strolling and sitting with New Yorkers enjoying early spring. Lots of dogs.

Ground Zero construction...apparently it's going to be a shopping center in most part so New Yorkers are pissed.

The 'village' Lots of activism history here.

View from the Empire State Building which was pretty cool.

Went to see Chicago on Broadway. I had front row tickets and it was really good...and all that jazz.

Times Square which I must have walked or driven through 20 times as it's really the center of things in the city.

This is what it looked like when I walked over the Brooklyn bridge the first day...not so nice but some how, it seemed very New York all grey and misty.

I could have used a couple more days here but I visited four of the five boroughs, rode the subway and the Staten Island ferry, ate hot pretzels, walked through the Guggenheim and wore out my feet.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Spent the day at Colonial Williamsburg, hearing the sound of canons firing and drums beating faintly in the background. It was a cool place with a kind of mixture of dramatic theater and real people who live there. I can't imagine coming out of your home to see reenactments of the revolution going on down the street in full costumes but it sure is a beautiful place.

I was rather alarmed to hear how excited they all were about the 'blood shed' (literal quote) and the 'nobility' of war. If this is the kind of rhetoric that people are raised on, no wonder the American military is so well funded.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

South Carolina

So, here's where you get your Civil War History (or War Between the States as Bubba, my tour guide, explained to me). By the way, Bubba means 'brother' down here.

This is Fort Sumter, in Charleston's harbor, where the first shots of the Civil war were actually shot. The two opposing commanders were best friends and Beauregard allowed the Yankees to 'evacuate' rather than surrender so that his friend wouldn't get killed. The only death occurred during the 50 gun salute as they were leaving when a canon exploded and shredded a private.

Here is where I want to live after I win the lottery. They watched the Fort Sumter battle from the third balcony. It sold for 10 million a couple of years ago.

The whole city of Charleston is just beautiful and filled with a feeling of lushness.

Enough history, lets get to Myrtle Beach for some sun.

Wildlife count - Coyote in Florida, big black buzzards in Georgia and dolphins in South Carolina.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Savannah, Georgia, a grand sedate old lady of the south...unless you show up on St. Patrick's Day in which case you will find the citizens reeling drunkenly through the streets dressed in every shade of green imaginable.

I went around and looked at some of the historical monuments although a few of them were decorated with green garland and surrounded by stages or beer stands. I counted seven stages around town and heard Sweet Home Alabama played three times... Everyone was friendly and wanted to chat. The one's I spoke with thought it was funny that a tourist had shown up on the only day of the year where the tourism offices and tours are closed but thought that the cheap beer would make up for it. Sadly, I had to drive.

Even the riverboats got into the festival by spraying green water into the air. Some of the fountains around town also had green water.

After walking the streets of Ireland-reborn for a couple of hours, I got back on the road to catch my first glimpse of the Atlantic Ocean on Hilton Head Island; an exclusive getaway for the very wealthy. I went to the swankest Starbucks I've ever seen and took my coffee to a desserted windswept beach for a walk.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The Paralympics

Went downtown to see the Olympic flame which is going to remain as a permanent fixture at the harbor. It was chilly and raining as is usual for March in Vancouver but McDonalds is giving away free coffee this week so we kept warm as we walked all over the city. You can see the living roof on the convention centre behind the flame which is just one of many all over the city and actually got us featured in National Geographic.

In an ironic note, the elevator for disable persons was out of order so no one with a chair or serious walking impediment would be able to get up for this view of the flame during the 'paralympics'.

-Sam, I'm sorry that there is no picture of the coffee or the Tim Horton's apple fritter that I ate.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


So, my sister gets her pilot's licence and here we are flying around the lower mainland. Apparently the goal for all pilots is to fly from airport to airport to test out their restaurants so that's what we did.

Now my dad has decided that flying is so much fun, he's bought himself a little plane. I might go for my license next year if I have any money left over.

By the way, for those of you in colder climates, check out my front yard cherry blossoms this week :)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Olympic winners

Went to the Richmond venue for the Olympics and saw Clara Hughes, our bronze medal speed skater. She's the only woman to win medals in both winter and summer olympics. She donated her money ($10,000) to Right To Play which she's worked with for years. Very inspiring speech which seems to prompted other winners to donate their 20, 15 or 10 thousand dollar prizes too.

Other exibits around town included a lot of tourism for Canada, Native Canadian art and culture and multi-culturism. I learned that Vancouver is 40% ethnic Chinese and 11% ethnic East Indian.

It's good to know where you are

A lot of totems around town

It's the year of the tiger

Starting out at the 2010 Olympics

Well, here I am in Vancouver hanging out at the Olympics. Downtown is an absolute crush with random crazies singing the national anthem, people wearing flags as capes and red mittens and jerseys everywhere. The energy is incredible.

There are several fun things you can do downtown including visiting 'houses' of various nations to learn about their culture and eat their food. One of the most popular activities is the zipline which lets you fly over the crowds but the line ups are usually over five hours long.