.All Trips / Africa / Botswana

“Pic of the Week”, July 28, 2016: African Elephants

10-Elephants

Elephants have fascinated me since I was a child.  You can enjoy them at the circus, in documentaries and zoos, but to really appreciate elephants you need to observe them in the wild.  They are majestic and entertaining, and will capture your full attention.   Their cute little ones will steal your heart.

African elephants are the largest land animals currently living on our planet.  They have massive ears shaped like the continent on which they live (and which are larger than the auricular appendages of their Asian cousins).  Because of their size, they consume a lot of food, about 300 pounds (136 kilograms) a day.  They are social creatures, with females and the young roaming in herds, but bulls tending to …

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.All Trips / Central USA / Colorado / North America

National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum, Leadville, Colorado

01 Leadville Museum of Mining 09-2014

Leadville is the highest altitude town to be occupied year round in the United States, situated at 3094 m (10,592 ft) above sea level.  The area was a booming silver mining town in the late 19th century and while the mining era is all but over, relics of it are still plentiful around Leadville.

The National Mining Hall of Fame and Museum (NMHFM) offers an interesting look at the geology and mining of the region, and its Hall of Fame portion recognizes the men and women who were important mining pioneers.  A relatively new institution, the nonprofit NMHFM was founded in 1977 and the building it occupies renovated in 1987.  Initially it was to be on the grounds of the Colorado …

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.All Trips / Central USA / Colorado / Food / North America

Vail Farmer’s Market

04 Vail’s Farmers Market (32)

During the summer months there’s a nice Farmers’ Market in Vail every Sunday.  It’s situated on the north side of Gore Creek, on Meadow Drive, in close proximity to the town’s large parking structure.  It compliments the nearby Minturn Market which is held on Saturday and many of the vendors from that smaller but more compact Minturn Market also show up at Vail.

The Vail market is, at least to my impression, significantly larger than the Minturn Market, although not its not as compact and fun to navigate.  It features seasonal produce which mostly is grown in eastern and western Colorado.  Not too much food is grown at the high elevation of Vail which sits at around 8200 …

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.All Trips / Europe / Poland

Signs of Krakow

Signs of Krakow (23)

I loved the days we spent in Krakow!  The city was everything I expected — and more.  Krakow and its people that have survived a lot of hardship over the years, most recently including Nazi and Soviet occupation.  The country and its people are now free and thriving.  And remarkably, Krakow has endured the ravages of war and occupation with its beautiful medieval core intact.
There’s a lot to see and do in the town, from historic Wawel Castle (and its Cathedral), inviting Market Square, to beautiful churches and museums in the old town.  It’s a city of advanced learning with a strong tradition of faith, from which Pope John Paul II advanced as leader of his church.  The former Jewish …

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.All Trips / Asia / India

The Beautiful Lodi Garden, Delhi

50a Lodhi Gardens, Athpula. Delhi 02-2016

In a crowded, congested city of 17 million, green spaces are very important and much appreciated by the residents.  The lovely Lodi Garden in New Delhi, India, offers lots of free space for people to enjoy.  Here you have a chance to walk, jog, do yoga, have a picnic and play.  We arrived fairly early on a drizzly morning and the park was almost deserted.  Of course a little rain never stopped me from exploring.   The drizzle dried up within an hour and then the crowds started to arrive.  But not before I got to see a nearly empty park with lovely palm-tree lined walks.  My first impressions lingered — this was to be one of my favorite destinations …

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.All Trips / Central Canada / North America

A visit to the Historic Banff Springs Hotel

09 Banff Springs Hotel

Situated in the heart of beautiful Banff National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the world famous Fairmont Banff Springs stands like a castle dominating the pretty alpine town of Banff, Alberta.  Nestled between Mt. Rundle, Tunnel Mountain and Sulphur Mountain, it offers some of the best alpine scenery in the world.  It’s just a short 10 minute stroll from the hotel along the beautiful Bow River to the Banff townsite, where a large number of shops, restaurants and other services are located.

Fairmont Banff Springs is a year-round luxury resort that offers access to activities as diverse as horse-back riding and golf, to superb skiing in the winter.  The hotel has been serving guests for more …

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.All Trips / Europe / France

A walk up Paris’ grandest boulevard, the Champs

22 Paris 05-2013.  Strolling down the Champs (65)

One of the world’s greatest streets to explore on foot is Paris’ Champs-Elysées.  A walk up or down the Champs makes for a fine day of exercise, window-shopping, sight-seeing, and eating. Champs-Elysées means “Elysian Fields” — a bit of heaven on earth. Its sidewalks are enormous and teaming with thousands of people, and the many lanes of the street are constantly jammed with traffic, especially near the Arc de Triomphe. The crowds are there day and night and the mood and ambiance change with the transition from daylight to evening. While it is in one of Europe’s most populous cities and much of it is congested, the Champs is a green tree-lined street with some charming smaller buildings, dotted by …

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.All Trips / Asia / Food / India

A visit to Delhi’s Subyard-Okhla Market

37 Subyard-Okhla Market, Delhi

Most of the inhabitants of our planet have very different shopping patterns from those living in the developed countries.  They do not buy their groceries at Safeway, Costco or Tesco, but at local markets in their neighborhoods.  Sometimes these markets have a series of small shops but often they are open air markets like the one I recently visited in Delhi.

There are dozens of vendors at some of the larger food markets in India, most with a unique product or small series of products (for example, the “onion and garlic” or “apple and orange” vendor, and so on).   Sometimes you’ll find four or five vendors side-by-side selling exactly the same fruit or vegetable for exactly the same price.  How does …

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