“Pic of the Week”, September 18, 2020: Halifax City Hall

01 Halifax City Hall (2)

A nice open space in Halifax is the grounds of this attractive Victorian building, City Hall.
City Hall was built between 1887 and 1890 and is one of the oldest public buildings in Nova Scotia.  It’s built of sandstone and has a clock tower, with clocks facing north and south.  Nova Scotians like to get full use of their real estate investments, and the building still functions as City Hall to this day.  It was designated a National Historic Site of Canada. 
There were a number of these very comfortable looking Adirondack chairs on the grounds of City Hall.  A pleasant place to sit on a warm summer day.
As you’d expect of a mature city, a War Memorial is nearby.
(Clock on thumbnails …

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.All Trips / Europe / Italy

Da Vinci’s Magnificent Last Supper, Milan

00 Last Supper

One of the main reasons we picked Milan as a travel destination was our desire to see Leonardo da Vinci’s greatest work, the “Last Supper”.
It’s not easy getting the opportunity to see this masterpiece in person.  There are a limited number of timed tickets issued for viewing of the Last Supper, so it is vital that you try to reserve your tickets just after they are issued because they sell out  quickly — often within a day or so of being released.  I got up in the middle of the night to buy ours — successfully, thank goodness.  If you can’t arrange the purchase of your tickets in advance, it is likely you can take a city tour in Milan …

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“Pic of the Week”, September 11, 2020: Hillbilly Hot Rod, Murdo

06 Murdo, South Dakota (7)

We pulled off the freeway to get some gas and walk the dogs as part of our road-trip to the Ozarks.  Murdo, South Dakota, is a small sleepy prairie town of a few hundred residents, and we didn’t have any plans to do anything except take care of our personal and pet needs before returning to the highway.
As I was filling the tank I noted that across the street was a parking area which contained several older vehicles, and I wanted to have a closer look.
Mostly these were cars of about 1970s vintage, but there were a couple of unusual beasts.  The oddest among these was a Frankenstein type of hot-rod, made of welded and bolted together odds and ends …

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.All Trips / Europe / Poland

St. Mary’s Basilica, Krakow

00 St. Mary’s Basilica, Krakow

There are a lot of old and interesting sites in Krakow, which was spared bomb damage in the World Wars, but St. Mary’s Basilica is a special place.  Second only to the Wawel Cathedral — which is considered Poland’s National Cathedral — St Mary’s is one of the city’s most important churches.  It’s situated on the city’s large central Market Square which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  The exterior of the building is impressive, both by day and at night.
A church has been on this site of St. Mary’s for over 800 years, but the current building was constructed in Gothic style on the burned ruins of the prior Romanesque church, that church having been destroyed in 1241.  This …

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“Pic of the Week”, September 4, 2020: Reflections of the Alpenglow, Lake Louise

Plain of Five Glaciers Hike with Evan and Sami (110)

Sometimes you’re lucky enough to be at the right place at just the right time.
We’d been hiking in Lake Louise, doing its famous Plain of Six Glaciers hike.  The weather had been pretty nice — some threatening clouds but mostly a pleasant day.  We enjoyed a tasty dinner at the Chateau Lake Louise and as we getting ready to leave stopped for one final look at that iconic scene of Lake Louise framed by Mount Victoria and its glaciers.
We were looking west, and Mount Victoria faces east, so it was in shadow.  The clouds above the mountain were catching the pretty light of the distant sun as it hit the Pacific horizon, the so-called “Alpenglow”.
The lake was so …

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.All Trips / Food / Nevada / North America / Southwestern USA

Red’s Old 395 Grill, Carson City

00 Red’s BBQ

If you’re in Carson City and looking for a fun place to get a good steak or some decent BBQ, then I’d recommend going to Red’s.
Red’s Old 395 Grill is a Carson City landmark.  The place is popular and it’s usually busy and crowded, but with a pleasant fun vibe.  It’s in the heart of the city and has great d├ęcor — so much stuff on the walls and ceilings it’s hard to take it all in.
Service was good and the food tasty when we visited.  The menu is extensive and while there are lots of meat dishes, there’s also plenty of salads and vegetarian options, pizza or pasta if you’d prefer these.  The place is known for its extensive selection …

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.All Trips / Alberta / Car Culture / North America

Great Cars Along the Highway: 1952 Oldsmobile Super 88

1952 Oldsmobile Super 88 (1)

One of my favorite vehicles is the Oldsmobile 88, a car which was also very popular with American consumers.  The line was introduced in 1949 and the Oldsmobile 88 was produced until 1999.  It was the top-selling line of cars for a remarkable twenty-four years.
In 1952, Oldsmobile’s most popular car was the Super 88, with 118,558 units sold. The Super 88 had been introduced the prior year as a more upscale version of the basic 88.  Super 88s were offered in five different body styles, but what made them so popular was a well-earned reputation for being a top performing car.  The Super 88 was powered by a Rocket Power V8 engine, shared with Oldsmobile’s Super 98 line. 
A beauty –the …

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“Pic of the Week”, August 28, 2020: Dogwood, Yosemite National Park

00 Dogwood Yosemite

When I make plans to visit California’s Yosemite National Park I target my trip for mid-to-late May.  Mostly this is because the snow melt in the Sierra Nevada Mountains is at its peak and the park’s waterfalls are overflowing and amazing.
A second reason for a late spring arrival is to see the dogwoods bloom.  There are two types of dogwoods: 1) a small ground plant (not the one I’m talking about) and, 2) trees that grow up to 30 feet tall having flowers about 3 inches wide.
Yosemite has many mountain dogwoods which are beautiful in bloom, as you can see.  Dogwoods are especially plentiful around the Merced River in Yosemite Valley, but are quite common along most of the park …

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