.All Trips / Central USA / Colorado / North America

Colorado Chautauqua National Historic Landmark

03 Colorado_Chautaqua_Dining_Hall. Courtesy Wikimedia and Hustvedt

The Colorado Chautauqua site was established in the late 1890s, when the Texas Board of Regents determined it needed to establish a summer school for teachers in a cool climate.  The Chautauqua Movement was a powerful and popular adult educational and social force at the time.  Boulder was picked as the site because the city fathers offered to supply the land, facilities and public utilities for the Chautauqua.  The presence of the nearby Rocky mountains was icing on the cake, because it was rightfully considered a very healthful environment.  

The Colorado Chautauqua opened on July 4, 1898, with 4,000 people attending. Boulder city leaders and Texas educators had created what was to become an important educational and social summer retreat.  Buildings …

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.All Trips / Eastern Canada / North America / Ontario

The Niagara Apothecary, Niagara-on-the-Lake

00 The Niagara Apothecary

The Niagara Apothecary is a pharmacy museum you can visit when in the small historic town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario.  The building actually was a active pharmacy from 1820 to 1964.  It was restored to its appearance circa 1869, and was opened as a Museum in 1971.

The interior is quite luxurious, especially for a small town pharmacy.  There are black walnut and butternut fixtures, and three crystal chandeliers.  Most of the shelves are filled with bottles and jars, all original and imported from Britain around 1830.  A pharmacist in the 19th century made most of the medications consumed by his customers, unlike in the 21st century when pharmacists only rarely make custom medications.

Interior shelving, The Niagara Apothecary

Interior shelving, The Niagara Apothecary

Admission is free and it’s a lot of fun to …

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.All Trips / D.C. / North America / Southeastern USA

The Museum of the American Indian, Washington DC

02 Museum of the American Indian

The National Museum of the American Indian is just one of the many terrific Smithsonian museums in Washington DC.  As its name implies, the museum exists to share information about Native cultures.  There is an extensive collection of Native artifacts, photographs, and media of tribes ranging from the Arctic to Patagonia.

The Museum of the American Indian is one of the newer buildings on the National Mall, having opened in September 2004.  The five-story 250,000-square-foot building was designed by Douglas Cardinal (an architect of the Blackfoot tribe).  It is covered in golden Kasota limestone and has a wavy shape designed to mimic natural rock formations shaped by the erosive effects of wind and water.  The museum is situated on a 4.25 acre (17,200 m2)-site and …

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.All Trips / Florida / North America / Southeastern USA

Visiting an Ancient Spanish Monastery — in Florida??

00 Ancient Spanish Monastery (36)

How could an old Spanish Monastery be located in North Miami Beach?  Herein lies the interesting background of this story.  

This Monastery was built between 1133 – 1141 A.D. near Segovia, in Northern Spain.  It became known as the Monastery of St. Bernard de Clairvaux. — St. Bernard was a Cistercian monk and influential church leader, and the founder and abbot of the Abbey of Clairvaux.  Cistercian monks lived in this Monastery for nearly 700 years.  After a social upheaval in the 1830’s, the Monastery‚Äôs Cloisters were seized and converted into a granary and stable.

 Ancient Spanish Monastery, North Miami Beach

Ancient Spanish Monastery, North Miami Beach

Enter legendary American publisher, William Randolph Hearst (of California’s Hearst Castle fame).  In 1925, Hearst purchased the Cloisters and the Monastery’s outbuildings (the church was not part …

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.All Trips

The Ljubljana Botanical Garden

Unknown Photo – Copy

One of Ljubljana’s less visited sites is its Botanical Garden.  Situated about a half hour’s walk from the historic heart of the city, the garden is an interesting green diversion.  The walk  to the gardens takes you past some lovely scenes, like the ones below.

The Ljubljana Botanical Garden was established in 1810, making it the oldest botanical garden in southeastern Europe.  It’s affiliated with the city’s University and as such is a formal part of this scientific and educational institution. While it is quite small (just 2 hectacres — about 5 acres), it has a surprisingly large diversity of plant life and plant environments, with more than 4,500 different species, a third being native to Slovenia.

Ljubljana Botanical Garden

Ljubljana Botanical Garden

The Botanical Garden plays an …

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.All Trips / Eastern Canada / North America / Ontario

A Day at Niagara-on-the-Lake

00 Niagara on the Lake (112)

I like to stop at the pretty and historic town of Niagara-on-the-Lake when I’m in the Niagara Peninsula region because it’s such a charming community.  It’s located where the Niagara River flows into Lake Ontario. 

Canada is a new country with only a relatively short period of recorded history.  Still, Niagara-on-the-Lake is considered to be of historic significance.  It was founded in 1781 and was originally known as Butlersburg, later renamed as West Niagara.  The town subsequently adapted it’s current name to avoid confusion with Niagara Falls.

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario

British Loyalists fled here from the south in the aftermath of the American Revolution.  It was the first capital of the Province of Upper Canada (the predecessor of Ontario) from 1792 to 1797.  During the …

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.All Trips / Asia / India

Enjoying a Bicycle Rickshaw Ride in Chandi Chowk, Delhi

00 Chandi Chowk Market (51)

It seems as though any type of transportation is acceptable on the streets of Old Delhi.  Very common are bicycle rickshaws — a three-wheeled bike with a bench that holds two passengers.  I’d never been on one of these contraptions until visiting Old Delhi where they are very popular because they are reasonably mobile on the crowded streets.   And they’re quite cheap to hire (more so for locals than to tourists).

We spent the better part of an hour in the rickshaw, although given how bad traffic was, really didn’t get as far as you might think.  Cattle roam the streets freely, although some are used to pull carts.  The streets and sidewalks are absolutely filthy and smelled as bad …

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.All Trips / England / Europe

Rambling to the British Museum

00 The Theater District (2)

After finishing our visit to the National Gallery in London, my brother and I still had about half the afternoon left so we decided to walk to the British Museum, less than a mile away.

It was a pleasant fall afternoon and we enjoyed the walk — so much so that we started exploring side roads so as to see more sights and extend our stroll.   This was the kind of day where you avoid the Underground world of the Tube.

The famous Odeon Theater, London

The famous Odeon Theater, London

The first part of our walk was through the theatre district, always a fun and colorful place to catch a play and always full of people.  Many of these marquees are likely familiar to you.  Street entertainers here are common …

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