I have never been one to celebrate the New Year. It always seemed like an artificial construct. I celebrated my own new year, the start of the school year, which coincided with introduction of the new models of cars when … Continue reading Welcome To 2021
This year on Times Square, according to the press release (which doesn’t get around to telling you that no one is invited to be there until the 4th paragraph, talk about burying the lede), the program will include the traditional … Continue reading What Are You Singing New Year’s Eve?
Forty years ago, we were living in Sollar’s Trailer Court. We could see a small slice of the channel from the front window of our mobile home because we were a little forward of the trailer next to us. One … Continue reading Floating Joy
July 11, 2020 Sitka to Anchorage, It was light when the alarm rang at 4:00 AM, although the sun would not, technically, be up for another 22 minutes. The days are getting shorter. We got dressed loaded the car and … Continue reading Northern Milk Run
Two hundred and forty four ago a resolution written by Thomas Jefferson and moved by John Adams passed the Continental Congress. It read, in part: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they … Continue reading July 4, 2020
Thirty years ago, this week my family was in Berlin. We had been there 10 months earlier and saw a wall that looked permanent. Three months later we saw it come down on TV. We went back in June 1990 … Continue reading 30 Years Ago This Week — Berlin.
June 6, 2020 Thirty years ago, this week we were in the Czechoslovakia. We were there because in 1989 we took our kids to Berlin to see the wall. Two and a half months later it came down. In 1990 … Continue reading 30 Years Ago This Week
Memories of Grandma April 12, 2020, Easter Sunday, Sitka, Alaska This year Lent started for us on a Thursday. We completely lost Ash Wednesday because of an untimely crossing of the dateline. So, we attended Ash Thursday services on MS … Continue reading When Does Lent End?
Matthew 28:6 April 11, 2020, Sitka, Alaska One of the trails I regularly walk was “Easter Bombed.” The shells you see in the pictures were scattered, but scattered carefully. They made my walk on Thursday delightful. They were a message … Continue reading He Is Not Here
“High Speed Rail” is a relative term. In the EU to be called “High Speed” a train must be able to travel either 155 MPH (250 KPH) over purpose-built track or 125 MPH (200 KPH) over standard rail lines. The … Continue reading “Higher Speed Rail” in America. (Drawbridge Up)
It used to be a tradition at Alaska Airlines, still may be, to put their best pilots on their most challenging runs. In the late ‘70s those included the Southeast Alaska “Milk Runs.” Wrangell and Petersburg had gravel strips on … Continue reading “Let’s Go Fly!”
The first Christmas in Sitka, in a trailer park, Suzi looked out the window and saw brightly colored boats cruising by in the channel. Over the years the boat parade has ebbed and flowed with the economy and the weather. … Continue reading Sitka Christmas Boat Parade, 2019
Back in 1993 member of the committee drafting the Albanian Constitution asked me who was right in their view of government, Jefferson or Adams. I thought about an answer and told him this story. Later I was asked to tell … Continue reading After 247 Years, Jefferson Still Lives!
In which I say goodbye to a ship named Prinsendam – the second time around. I was new to Juneau, looking across Gastineau Channel from my home in North Douglas. A neat little cruise ship pulled into Juneau’s dock. It … Continue reading Goodbye Old Friend
You can try to shelter yourself from travel’s inconveniences but you’re never completely successful. We’re used to negotiating travel’s mine fields (sometimes literally.) We’ve done winding dusty mountain roads in third world busses, train rides with goats and chickens, and … Continue reading The Long Ride Home
In 1904 the fishing city of Ålesund burned to the ground. There was only one fatality but the whole city was homeless. Around Europe people responded. In Paris there were benefit concerts, in Germany Keiser Wilhelm personally got involved in … Continue reading Art Nouveau Phoenix — Ålesund
Trondheim is a place of pilgrimage, for two types of pilgrim, religious and rock ‘n rollers. First St. Olaf (in the Norwegian brochures it is St Olav, in English, St. Olaf. St. Olaf is pretty engrained in my brain so … Continue reading Trondheim — St. Olaf and Rock and Roll.
These are more pictures, companions to the post Flåm Railway. The final picture is the electric ferry, “Future of the Fjords” it can travel 40 KM on a charge and takes 25 minutes to recharge. I will be talking about … Continue reading Flåm Valley
This is not the first time we have ridden the Flåm Railway. One of my most vivid memories of traveling with the kids was standing on the platform at a station on the line, after having gotten off at a … Continue reading Flåm Railway
The lecturer on the ship told us that in Oslo we would be tie up at Askershaus, a fortress fairly close to much of what I wanted to see in Oslo. He told us there would be a money exchange, … Continue reading Feeling So 20th Century in Oslo
St. Charles Borromeo Church is easy to miss if you are not on a tour. While it is “hidden” in a little square it is not small. It does not appear in my Lonely Planet book or on either of … Continue reading Confessions and Anguished Angels.
Yesterday was a “sea day” on Prinsendam. There are not enough of them on this segment of the cruise. I like a day at sea to recharge, and go to lectures and to ask the Captain questions. This sea day … Continue reading Einstein on the Beach
Matzi (Albanian for cat) came into our lives when our cat “Smite” died. Our husky dog, Merlin, went into mourning, with a keening howl that would not stop. We went to the shelter to find a “rescue cat.” We asked … Continue reading Matzi
The St. Pancras is a classic old railway hotel designed by British Architect Gilbert Scott. It ran out of steam in the 30s and sat more or less derelict, used for a sett for the occasional Victorian or horror film, … Continue reading St. Pancras Redux