9-11 Memorial, NYC

9-11 School Children's Poster

9-11 School Children’s Poster

It is a sad situation, but it seems that in the US we do memorials very well.  From the Oklahoma bombing to the Vietnam Memorial our memorials seem to be very fitting tributes to the heroes who lost their lives.  The 9-11 Memorial in New York is no exception.
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San Quirico d’Orcia, Tuscan Countryside

Val d'Orcia Church

We have all seen photos of the Tuscan landscape and the beautiful green or gold rolling hills, depending on the time of year.  We visited in the spring so all was very lush and green.  Photos of Tuscany were responsible for Italy being such a large part of our initial trip to Europe.  In particular, I was interested in the often photographed Vitaleta Chapel pictured above.   We stayed at a working vineyard and olive farm in San Quirico d’Orcia primarily for me to have easy access to this chapel and many other vistas.  As it turns out, the light was never quite right for photographing the chapel, but the surrounding area was still wonderful.

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The Rock of Gibraltar, UK

I never thought as a kid watching the Prudential Insurance ads on television that I would one day climb to the very top of the Rock of Gibraltar.  Further, who would have thought that monkeys were at the top waiting to steal food from tourists?  Actually we were told they are Barbary apes, so I guess I’ll soon need to go look up the difference.  This was a strenuous hike up a steep trail with many steps, called the Mediterranean Steps.  One member of our party had to turn back, so the rest of our group went on without our guide.  The mountains in the distance across the Straits of Gibraltar are part of north Africa!

We were told there is no unemployment in Gibraltar, UK.   In fact, there is a labor shortage so the businesses there must hire thousands of people from Spain who commute over the narrow land bridge connecting Spain to Gibraltar.  This road actually crosses the airport runways on Gibraltar.  However, Spain still feels like Gibraltar should be theirs, so they refuse to hire anybody from Gibraltar….

Cold Morning Fog

One cold morning I went exploring the area around Crested Butte, Colorado.  I turned and went up a hill to see the fog from the warmer lake water meeting the frigid morning air.  This is a site we would see on occasion in the winter on Lake Michigan.  What I often find intriguing is that sites such as these are everyday for some.  One reason this clip was chosen is no cars drove by on their way to work.  Also, the guy with the circular saw gave it a rest for a while…..