What the–?

I just wrote a 1,500-word post about our mini-vacation, hitting the high points and closing with some good bloggage.

WordPress ate 75 percent of it. I now hate WordPress.

So here’s the gist: We’re back, we had a good time. But I’m not rewriting that goddamn post.

Mother fracker.

Here’s a picture:

God, I hate WordPress.

Posted at 9:06 pm in Same ol' same ol' |

75 responses to “What the–?”

  1. coozledad said on July 15, 2012 at 9:10 pm

    The picture ate up all them words. Looks sort of like the Suwanee, but with hills.

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  2. brian stouder said on July 15, 2012 at 10:14 pm

    Your photo of the reflective, placid water and the gentle sky, and the encompassing greenery that’s actually green is certainly the equivalent of 1500 words, all by itself.

    I passionately hate when software screws me over, but this post has an eloquence all its own. Leaving aside the actual intricacies of WordPress (which would in any case completely befuddle me), I think the post conveys vacation and summer 2012 and returning home to the grind, all in one lovely stroke.

    Having said that, I must now go to the end of the old thread and ask Danny a good-natured macro-political question.

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  3. MichaelG said on July 15, 2012 at 11:57 pm

    Beautiful picture. I’m a sucker for those reflection photos. Well done.

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  4. Bill said on July 16, 2012 at 12:51 am

    Looks like the UP. Maybe?

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  5. Dexter said on July 16, 2012 at 1:49 am

    Everybody’s on vacation or just finished. Two of my daughters and their families just got back from Gulf Shores , Florida, my pal and his kids and all his grandkids just returned from Panama City FL, and my wife is going to spend a couple weeks in Charleston visiting her sister in a short while, and a grandson is with his dad’s family at a family resort on Elk Lake in the Grand Traverse Bay area of Michigan.
    My sister-in-law and her sister and mom just returned from Stockholm, Sweden, their native land.

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  6. Joe Kobiela said on July 16, 2012 at 7:44 am

    Not being picky Gulf Shores is in Alabama, and its beutiful
    One of my favorite places.
    Pilot Joe
    eating breakfast in Memphis

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  7. Basset said on July 16, 2012 at 7:59 am

    On the bus right now headed back to work after our own break, four days in Navarre, Florida… east of Pensacola and a little further east of Gulf Shores. Joe, there are a lot of adjectives I would apply to Gulf Shores but “beautiful” is not one of them. Been there twice and didn’t like it, generic tourist trap an way too crowded and built up for us.

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  8. JWfromNJ said on July 16, 2012 at 8:03 am

    Ouch! I tend to do all my writing in Word for that handy back arrow and then copy & paste. How loud did you scream? Welcome back.

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  9. alex said on July 16, 2012 at 8:37 am

    Some good food for thought in the last thread.

    Love Linda Ronstadt. I remember seeing Johnny Carson interview her in the ’70s when she was coked out of her gourd and she was still charming as all get out.

    As for Hubert Humphrey, I wouldn’t compare him to Romney. He was actually one of the few Dems my dad was ever willing to cross party lines for because he was a class act next to Tricky Dick, who in a lot of ways was more like Romney, including not being particularly well liked by his own party and notorious for talking out of both sides of his ass. The election of ’68 has more parallels with ’08 than ’12—the Dems likely couldn’t have won no matter what. Had the GOP picked Santorum or Gingrich, that would have been like the Dems in meltdown mode when they picked McGovern in ’72. We may still see such an event in ’16.

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  10. brian stouder said on July 16, 2012 at 8:56 am

    Had the GOP picked Santorum or Gingrich, that would have been like the Dems in meltdown mode when they picked McGovern in ’72. We may still see such an event in ’16.

    Agreed; and your HHH point is well taken.

    What I was grasping for was that HHH was a credible national candidate that had a reduced chance of winning, because his party was busy plunging over an ideological cliff…and it seems to me that the 2012 GOP is in mid-cliff-plunge mode.

    In all seriousness, I DO think that if President Obama wins this year, the large elements of the GOP will misread the result, and 2016 will be their 1972 (etc).

    Right now, the Democratic party’s bench-strength is just loaded with talent, and one doesn’t have to look at (for example) Romney’s VP choices to see that the R’s are quite weak right now.

    We shall see. I was thinking about this during a Book-TV interiew with the guy who just wrote what looks to be a marvelous biography of Jeane Kirkpatrick (who I admired greatly, back in the day), and pondering what drove people like her out of the Democratic party and into the Republican Party, in 1972…

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  11. beb said on July 16, 2012 at 9:09 am

    Sounds like someone could use another weeks vacation.

    Oh, wait, that was me.

    Went up to Petosky for my niece’s wedding. I didn’t know Michigan could get so hilly.

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  12. Dorothy said on July 16, 2012 at 9:16 am

    Southerners are not the only ones who make hot pepper jelly, Prospero. We made it three summers ago with our first garden harvest and it was a huge hit with friends and family. At our monthly office birthday celebration, one person likes to put a cube of cream cheese on a plate, dump pepper jelly over it, and lay out an assortment of crackers for adornment. Mmmmmmm good. We have an awful lot of tomatoes on the vine this year, but we decided yesterday we have to cut back on watering – we’re afraid our well might not hold out, it’s been so dry here. I’ll cry if we don’t get to harvest all those tomatoes. Y’all have convinced me to try making gazpacho this year. There’s always the farmer’s market if ours don’t ripen.

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  13. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 16, 2012 at 9:40 am

    Obviously, I’m not their target demographic in so many different ways, but Las Vegas: wow. Going from talking to Navajo folk in Chinle and Kayenta, to a long evening and pre-dawn in Vegas is a shift and a half. Lots of poverty still on the Big Rez, but joy and contentment and hozro (think “shalom” or maybe “aloha”), while here in the Capital of Glitz is more anxiety, angst, outbursts of rage, and deeply stressed out individuals than anywhere I’ve ever seen. The guy at the hotel check-in desk was mellow at 11 pm when I was printing boarding passes, but turned out he’s LDS (just got back from a mission to Austria, saving money for his last two years at BYU); otherwise, the only smile in the whole place is Penn looking down at me next to Teller’s quizzical wry grin from the billboards over baggage claim. Every other face even on those massive ad panels is wearing an expression that you’d never confuse with happiness (but good for Penn, who clearly is enjoying himself!), and quite a few actually look like they’re in pain.

    The idea of Las Vegas as a playground makes perfect sense (wealth, comfort, sensuality, plenty of adult beverages along with big gulps, and a guarantee of raucous humor in any number of venues after 10 pm), but the practice doesn’t seem to work out as well.

    Your mileage, of course, may vary. My view may also have been colored by 800 people waiting in check-in lines for 2 Delta personnel, and even pre-flight e-check-in got you into a line of only 50 or so, and this at 4:45 am local time. On the general plus side, I missed out on the Big Grope I got on my in-bound flight.

    Anyhow, I got to see “Breaking Bad” last night: any episode of any show that involves electrical engineering can’t be all bad. Did anyone else enjoy that magnetic experience? I’m just sitting here waiting for the 1% to be seated, which seems to be more like 25%.

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  14. MichaelG said on July 16, 2012 at 9:57 am

    I bin to Guff Sho. It’s in L. A. (Lower Alabama). Kenny Stabler used to have a bar there. I had a beer.

    Red pepper jelly is very popular here in CA. People here at the office are always giving me jars of the stuff. I’ve got two of them now. It’s great stuff. You can do all kinds of things with it.

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  15. Charlotte said on July 16, 2012 at 11:10 am

    My stepmother used to make pepper jelly over cream cheese like that when I was a kid — with triscuits. Yum.
    I tend to pickle those peppers I don’t dry into ristras — Michael Symon has a bomber recipe for pickled peppers. Midwinter, dumped into the cuisinart with some onion, some dried mint, some parsley and a little olive oil and then processed just until chunky — it’s a really addictive pepper thing. And if you really get stuck with the tomatoes — you can just throw them in ziploc bags in the freezer. Later in the winter, if you want to make sauce, or salsa — the skins come off like a breeze if you run them under the cold water tap. I’m eating salsa this morning made from last year’s tomatoes.

    Also, they say that tomatoes ripen better if you stop watering — I don’t know, it’s so dry here that anything that isn’t getting watered is just dying. Including trees. One thing about the west I can’t get used to is having to water the trees.

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  16. alex said on July 16, 2012 at 11:15 am

    I have a friend who makes jalapeño jelly and it’s wonderful stuff.

    The week’s not starting out particularly well. This morning awoke to cold water in the shower. The pilot light in the water heater was out. It was out because it was full of water. The whole unit’s a mess so I just got back from buying a new one.

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  17. Jeff Borden said on July 16, 2012 at 11:26 am

    I agree with Jeff TMMO on Las Vegas. It’s actually an amazingly depressing city.

    Many years ago, when my dad still attended newspaper conventions, they often met in LV. Dad was no kind of gambler at all, but he loved the cheap rooms and inexpensive food which were more or less underwritten by the gambling. Now, many of the hotels in Vegas rival Manhattan for nightly rates and the better shows command Broadway-level prices.

    We went for a three-day weekend many years ago. While we didn’t like Vegas, we did enjoy renting a car, driving way north to the California-Nevada border, then driving back south through Death Valley. We were still in the desert when the sun went down and the moon came up and it was spectacular.

    On a political note, I’ve really been enjoying watching Willard the Windsock whine about all those meanies complaining about his days as a corporate raider and job exporter. Plus, even rock-ribbed Republicans are calling on Mr. Moneybags to release more of his tax returns. Someone on a talk show yesterday speculated they must contain very damaging information because Willard has made the equation that it hurts him less to HIDE his finances than to REVEAL them.

    And yet this soulless rich boy has at least a 50-50 chance of becoming the leader of the free world. God help us.

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  18. Julie Robinson said on July 16, 2012 at 11:36 am

    We’re cutting back on watering too, and trying to use the soaker as much as possible. We never water the lawn, only the garden and annuals in a normal year. This year we’ve also done the shrubs and trees, reasoning that judicious watering is better than removal and replacement. But I’m letting a whole row of marigolds go–they were cheap and already look horrible, even with water. It’s looking like a good decision to cut back on the garden this year.

    It has been a wearing summer, hasn’t it? And no relief in sight, though a couple of areas around here got some rain over the weekend. Not us. Alex, you must be feeling like you’ve been visited by the ten plagues of Egypt. What’s next? Locusts?

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  19. LAMary said on July 16, 2012 at 11:40 am

    I can’t stand Vegas. It’s depressing. The tree hugger part of me goes crazy looking at all the pointless water and power usage and some other part of me wonders why all those people with oxygen tanks and scooter chairs spend their money on slot machines. I get very uptight in Vegas. It’s alternative reality is completely incompatible with mine.

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  20. Jeff Borden said on July 16, 2012 at 11:52 am

    Oh, come on, LAMary, you think the River Nile flowing through Luxor or the dancing fountains of the Mirage are out of place in a desert? We cannot expect people to just accept the environment in the places where they choose to live, right?

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  21. Judybusy said on July 16, 2012 at 11:56 am

    I was going to say, “I now hate WordPress, too,” until I saw Cooze’s and Brian’s responses. I’m sorry you lost the fruits of your efforts, but really, that picture really does say so much.

    Speaking of vacations, my honey and I decided to go to D.C. at the end of August. It’s a first visit for each of us. We’ve got airfare and hotel taken care of. We’ll be staying a block off Dupont Circle, on the south side. I am going to impose on all you lovely people and ask for recommendations on what to do–obviously the smaller things–we know about the “big stuff.” This could include shops, museums, places for music. Also, we’ll be celebrating her birthday there, and she wants to eat crab. Suggestions for that would be most welcome! It does not need to be a fancy place, just good food. Thanks in advance for any help.

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  22. Deggjr said on July 16, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    What Alex said @#9 about Linda Ronstadt. I remember Carson (same or different interview) quizzing her about not being married. He seemed to have deep personal interest. Finally she giggled and said something like ‘it’s not like I haven’t been asked’. Thanks for asking the questions Johnny, I was wondering myself.

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  23. Deborah said on July 16, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Julie you are right about this summer being wearing. I’m sick of it, can’t wait until fall. Partly because of my retirement in October, but mostly just to be done with this horrible summer. I’m not even going to complain about the shorter days.

    Don’t get me started on Vegas. I had a few projects there so had to go there often. I hate it, to me it’s bereft of anything positive. I have done the drive out to the various places in the desert that Jeff B mentions, it’s the only way I could stay sane during those business trips.

    My husband designed a building in Vegas about 15 or 20 years ago for one of the hotel conglomerates. He has some doozey stories about the experience. It’s not a building he is proud of, in fact we think it has already been demolished for another glitzier building. He walked away from the project about half way through and let one of the more junior designers take over.

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  24. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    With respect, Alex, had Bobby not been assassinated, he’d have won in a landslide over the Dick, and American History would have been changed vastly for the better. A human being rather than Devil’s Spawn, it would have to have been better. The malignant cancer of the war would not have been allowed to grow until ’72, for one thing, no matter what sort of losses Dow and Westinghouse had to munch.

    On a political note, I’ve really been enjoying watching Willard the Windsock whine about all those meanies complaining about his days as a corporate raider and job exporter.

    Well, since by RMoney’s choice his goobernatorial stint and Romneycare has all the real presence of a phantom limb, If there’s no Bain, there is no there there. Might as well nab the thug from NJ for a running mate:


    Michael G: Lemme guess. It was called Snake’s Place, or sump’n like ‘at. Here’s a somewhat legendary SI profile of Stabler:


    My ex and I took our first vacation sans keedo at Point Clear, Bama on the gulf. Most decidedly gorgeous. As Jesse Winchester says about Biloxi, you can see storms approaching off toward New Orleans. Then we went to stay a few days in the wonderful Lafitte Guest House in the Quarter in NOLA.

    Never been to Vegas, but Lake Mead is beautiful if it weren’t for the bane of jet-skis, though I side with Edward Abbey on flooding natural places like Glen Canyon to provide water for the sybaritic lifestyle of SoCal. Watering non-native trees.

    My favorite pepper jelly application is on sausage biscuits for breakfast.

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  25. 4dbirds said on July 16, 2012 at 12:16 pm

    Hi Judy,

    If you have time, I could meet you in DC for some coffee during your visit. If you rent a car, take a drive down RT 7 and/or RT 9 in Northern Virginia and visit the wineries. Great Falls Park is also close by and a nice hike. http://www.nps.gov/grfa/index.htm

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  26. Dorothy said on July 16, 2012 at 12:19 pm

    Judy I was in D.C. for about 7 hours the first Sunday in May and had a marvelous time walking around with my daughter. She insisted we take the Metro over to Eastern Market and we had lunch at a delicious pizza place – cannot recall the name. But it had many, many restaurants to choose from. A little Googling should help you find one with good crab. The shopping there was really great, too. Much of it outdoors.

    My family keeps pestering me to consider a vacation to Vegas, the six of us (our adult kids and their sweethearts). I keep resisting. My gut feeling is that I would hate it. I feel like a party pooper with my resistance but if I went along, I think I’d be miserable the whole time. Which would make the rest of them miserable. I should just tell them to go without me and have my own little fun vacation.

    Edit: Googled the pizza place. It was Seventh Hill Pizza. Wood fired pizza – quite scrumptious!

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  27. Jeff Borden said on July 16, 2012 at 12:21 pm

    Hey NN.C community,

    My lovely wife and I would like to spend a few days at a lakefront cottage type of place that is pet friendly and within a reasonable drive of Chicago. We realize it’s awfully late in the season, but hope springs eternal.

    Our initial hope was that we might score something on the west coast of Michigan overlooking Lake Michigan, but that might be overly ambitious. We’d have no problem with Wisconsin, though I hate to spend a penny there with that slack-jawed union-busting governor in office. We really want to bring Cosmo along as he is definitely an aqua dog.

    Any help or suggestions are welcome.

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  28. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 12:23 pm

    Sandusky had no idea what aa sick fuck he is, but he knew who buttered his bread. Do not read before taking food.

    This bastard doesn’t stand a chance in prison if he’s in general population.

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  29. Scout said on July 16, 2012 at 12:26 pm

    The picture is gorgeous, Nancy, and it tells some of the story that I’m sure your post did. But I still sympathize with the aaarrrrggghhh factor of having the dog (WordPress) eat your homework (whIch was no doubt top drawer.)

    Now that my daughter and family moved away from Vegas I no longer have any reason to visit there, thank gods. It is blank and soulless, comprised of nothing but strip malls and chain restaurants. The Strip is OK enough at night with all the lights but it is ugly and depressing in the daytime.

    Last night we went to see Beasts of the Southern Wild. I’m still thinking about it today. Two thumbs up.

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  30. DellaDash said on July 16, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    Tomato summer…watered Early Girls, Heirloom and a few other varieties for my BFF during the 2 weeks she was out of town. Rescued many at first blush to miraculously turn full-on red under my skylight (wild bunnies in the hood are fattening on the low-hanging ripe ones). Made about 5 quarts of salsa with black beans, fresh corn-off-the-cob, poblano peppers and red onion from the first batch (can eat it straight like gazpacho)…sent her home with double the number when she got back…ready-for-marinara-sauce.

    Just got ‘Midnight Sun’ from the library, Charlotte, and already like Elwood Reid’s clean, robust prose. The following introduction on page two by the narrator to his buddy, one of the main protagonists, is the kind of characterization (of both men, simultaneously) in which I take delight:

    “I don’t know what Burke wanted or what he thought was at the end of it all. He was a tall, thick-chested man with blunt hands and deep work-haunted eyes; a journeyman who could walk beam dead drunk and drive nails with one swat. His face was scuffed and worn from bar fights and outdoor labor. When he spoke he made fists with his hands and jabbed his chin, daring someone to take a swing. There was nothing soft or false about him, just the dogged pursuit of the physical. He lifted weights, skied, hiked, fished and taught himself obscure things by poring through old books on knots, blacksmithing, beekeeping and metallurgy–anything he thought the common man might have forgotten. He was impossible to know, but I caught glimpses–small snatches of what made him tick, ususally after too many beers or shots of bourbon. But then I was too far gone to put the pieces together and I’d wake the next morning knowing I’d forgotten something.”

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  31. Sue said on July 16, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    Jeff Borden, I don’t know what your price range is, but here’s a good one. Sue Woodward is the owner. I think the Country Cottage takes pets but I’m not sure.
    And I think I’ve mentioned before, if you object to the Gov, you can support WI tourism by visiting Milwaukee. After all, Walker has publicly said that he doesn’t want Wisconsin to “become another Milwaukee”, and spending your money in this nice city would be a good way to make your point.

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  32. Maggie Jochild said on July 16, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Judybusy, I was only in DC once but still have life-altering memories of the Hirschhorn Museum — Alexander Calder, et al. The docent tour was riveting. Don’t miss the sculpture outside. Also, the Smithsonian has Julia Child’s kitchen in it. On a completely different note, a day set aside for the Holocaust Memorial Museum will rearrange your soul. Worth it, worth all the grief.

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  33. Dexter said on July 16, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    Gulf BREEZE, Florida Joe, my mistake. It’s just across the 98 south of Pensacola. That’s where my kids were vacationing. I have been all over the peninsula of Florida but never up in the panhandle.

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  34. Julie Robinson said on July 16, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    Count me in as one who doesn’t understand the appeal of Vegas. Of course, we don’t even play the lottery, so the whole idea of gambling is off-putting to me*. Our daughter did an overnight there while on a cross-country trip, and her report was that it was dirty, smelly, and full of hookers passing out semi-nude photos of themselves. Oh, and hot, with many smokers. Dorothy, stand your ground!

    *I can think of many more pleasurable ways to waste my money. Plus, I know I have an addictive personality; better not to even start.

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  35. JWfromNJ said on July 16, 2012 at 1:12 pm

    Judybusy – Definitely make use of the Metro, it’s clean and very efficient. I haven’t been there in a few years but here are some of my picks –
    – National Zoo – if you’re into that it’s a stones throw from the metro
    – Perhaps the Udvar-Hazy extension of the Air & Space Museum, again if you are into that
    – Adams-Morgan – a funky neighborhood, lots of different kinds of restaurants, some have rooftop dining
    – Drive around the embassies (or if you don’t have a car) take the Metro bus north from Dupont Circle to the American University stop and back – you can get a transfer for free from bus to train or vice versa
    – Hit the hill, even if you don’t like your congresscritter. See if you can visit their office, sign the guestbook, ride the train from the office buildings to the Capitol. Eat lunch in the senate dining room. The Senate Bean soup. If you’re feeling kinda Mark Souder go berserk on the servers about wanting a grilled and not toasted turkey sandwich:


    Sorry I had to bring that up.

    You may see some familiar faces. I saw a bunch of senators and also Penn Jillette taking a tour.
    – Georgetown, but be alert. Just like any big city. To get to Georgetown you’ll also have to take the metro bus from Dupont Circle.
    I also second the Smithsonian, the main air & space museum, and a stroll on the mall.

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  36. Connie said on July 16, 2012 at 1:29 pm

    How pet friendly Jeff? I’ve got a place on the same lake Sue linked to, much cheaper, more downscale, house is across street from Glen Lake, own frontage as well. View across Glen Lake is Sleeping Bear Dunes. Many great Lake Michigan beaches in a short driving distance. A couple of weeks still available in August but would definitely depend on pets.

    Nancy, my husband looked over my shoulder at your picture and said “who canoed the Au Sable?”

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  37. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    even if you don’t like your congresscritter

    I just got off the phone with Lindsey Graham’s office. I told his staff I want my Senator to vote for the Disclose Act. It was all I could to to bite my tongue and not add that the bastards that support unlimited cash with no accountability are a bunch of treasonous pantywaists like Senator Graham. In fact I bordered on respectful. No sense in talking to Demented’s people, I’m sure I’d end up being terribly rude and using words none of them understand.

    That is a very nice photo Nancy. If there were room on the banks for a mule trail, I’d say it looks like a canal. It also looks as if your vantage was wet.

    It is roll on the floor hilarious that GOPers have Ed Gillespie on the retroactive retirement point. There is no crookeder weasel in politics than this bastard. Remember when he was spreading “walking around money” to encourage votes for Christie “Stop and Frisk Mandingo” Whitman? How is the SOB not living in Club Fed? And doesn’t “retroactive retirement” sound suspiciously like LDS forcibly baptizing Anne Frank into Mormonism decades after her death? They really want to bring that up?

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  38. Bitter Scribe said on July 16, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Did everyone see that Obama ad released over the weekend, featuring Mitt Romney murdering “America the Beautiful” over slides of how Bain shipped jobs overseas? Priceless. The first of many to come, I sure hope.

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  39. Charlotte said on July 16, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    Best time I ever had in Vegas was Chinese New Year. My oldest college friend married a guy who has become sort of the Billy Joel of Big China (he’s from Hong Kong, they live in Taiwan). I lived with them for a winter when they were first married and taught English over there. So Wakin comes over to play Vegas for the new year, and I fly out to meet them. Spent an entire weekend as an honorary Chinese person — you can go to Vegas entirely in Chinese. The food was great (there is fabulous Chinese food in Vegas). I got to hang out with Wakin’s mother, who I adore — we have no common languages so we just smile, nod, and pass one another the best tidbits off the lazy susan with our chopsticks. We went to O, and then Segfried and Roy (which was startlingly racist!). Oh, and swam a lot with the kids. It was weird and sort of wonderful —

    Della — glad you’re liking Midnight Sun. My favorite of Elwood’s books is “What Salmon Know” — his short stories. Spent a delightful evening last night at his Lily’s 12th birthday party — and spent Saturday practicing driving with his 16 year old (only slightly terrifying, thank god for gravel back roads).

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  40. coozledad said on July 16, 2012 at 1:56 pm

    Good lord. Mitt’s going all meta on his own ass. Wouldn’t defending your calls for an apology be like having your mom attach your wedgie-stained shorts to the refrigerator with a couple of horseshoe shaped magnets?
    Is Mitt consulting the Hypocephalus again?

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  41. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    On peppper jelly: Understood Dorothy, but it is a Southren delicacy and specialite’, like pimiento cheese, only much more better.

    The ad Scribe refers to:


    Mittens bares his magic u-trou.

    That’s entertainment. An internet friend of mine, very active in Dem politics, named Mack Farmer, says: “This made me reach for my checkbook.” Mack and I share the belief that Dems should give back as good as they take from the GOPer slime-slingers. Wish they’d done so with the SwiftBoat bullshit. I mean, how can the party of Brazen Chickenhawks skate on slandering Dems that served heroically. Did a single one of those Shortboat assholes share a single minut in Kerry’s boat? Nope. Just fabricated slander, for which they should have been sued. Of course, in a normal campaign, the VP candidate should have dealt with this outrageous shit, but I guess Edwards was busy polishing his tassel loafers somewhere out on the Appalachian Trail.

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  42. Sherri said on July 16, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    Judybusy, I was going to suggest a tour of the US Naval Observatory, but when I checked the website, there are no tours offered in August. We really enjoyed touring it, seeing all the various time-keeping devices they had used over the years, and getting a chance to look through the smaller of their two big telescopes (the other was being used.) We also liked seeing the Washington National Cathedral.

    Speaking of asking for vacation ideas, my husband and I are discussing a trip to London/maybe other parts of the UK next fall after we send our daughter to college, since we’ll be empty-nesters. I’m just getting started on planning; anybody have any suggestions?

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  43. Danny said on July 16, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    Brian, I wanted to let you know that saw your post at the end of the last thread and it was thought-provoking. Unfortunately, I may not be able to comment for a while (may need until this weekend). Too much going on at work right now.

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  44. Deborah said on July 16, 2012 at 2:48 pm

    Sherri, if you’re going to London, plan a side trip to Sissinghurst, Vita Sackville-West’s amazing garden. Just fabulous http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/sissinghurst-castle Also try Googling “Sissinghurst” and click on images and see how gorgeous it is, a million times better in person of course.

    Also if you’re into the Bloomsbury group like I am, go to Charlston, the home and garden of Virginia Woolf’s sister Vanessa Bell, where they all hung out. http://www.charleston.org.uk

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  45. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 2:58 pm

    Oh Boy! A new Michael Chabon novel:


    I think that Kavalier and Klay is on the list of Almost Great American novels. Gentlemen of the Road is brilliant. Yiddish Policemen’s Union is genius. And Mysteries of Pittsburgh is so convincing, I thought for years Chabon must be gay (until I heard of the Ayelet Waldman internet flame wars).

    And not only that, a new one from the great Mark Helprin, of Refiner’s Fire, Memoir from Ant-Proof Case, A Soldier of the Great War and Winter’s Tale:


    Deborah, isn’t there a notable anecdote or piece of writing about Virginia Woolf and her sister’s garden?

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  46. Deborah said on July 16, 2012 at 3:10 pm

    Propero, I’m one of those people who read more about Virginia Woolf, than read her work itself. The Bloomsbury group were a bunch of interesting people who were great friends in many interesting ways. I’m drawn to them, I find their lives most fascinating. During the war they spent a lot of time in Charlston there is much out there that they have written about it, but I can’t put my finger on anything at this moment.

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  47. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 3:16 pm

    Thos wascawy wabbits in the GOP, govewnment by self-intewest:


    In a sane world, if there were still such cretins as Teabangers, wouldn’t they be outraged by this?

    And what is it about the GOP that attracts full goose loonies like this:

    http://www.addictinginfo.org/2012/07/15/republic-2/ ????

    Deborah: It had something to do with a servant Woolf thought had been mistreated. Or perhaps I’m delusional on this subject.

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  48. Sherri said on July 16, 2012 at 3:20 pm

    Michael Chabon won my heart with one sentence in “The Mysteries of Pittsburgh:”

    Between the arrogant stupid prow of Carnegie-Mellon University and the ugly back end of the Carnegie Institute, between the little shrines to Mary in the front yards along Parkview and the park itself, lies the wide dry ravine that contains, essentially, four things: the Lost Neighborhood, the Cloud Factory, train tracks, and a tremendous amount of garbage.”

    I’ve walked across the bridge over that ravine many times, and that sentence captures it so perfectly it took my breath away.

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  49. Jolene said on July 16, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Judybusy, between now and your trip to DC, you might want to spend some time on the WaPo Going Out Guide web site. Lots of recommendations on all fronts–museums, historical places, entertainment, and, most important, restaurants. Also, you might want to check out the online chats> conducted by Tom Sietsema, WaPo’s senior restaurant reviewer. There’s one every Wednesday at 11:00 AM. It’s a good place to ask specific questions (e.g., a recommendation for good crab), and you can also get a lot of ideas from the questions other people ask. The page at this link will also take you to the archive of Sietsema’s previous chats.

    The trick w/ restaurants, of course, is that they’re always changing. One advantage of the chats is that you’l be able to get an up-to-date answer. If you construct your question right, you might be able to get several recommendations in one response, but be forewarned that short questions are most likely to get answered. The chatters try to answer as many questions as they can in the time they’re online.

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  50. Kirk said on July 16, 2012 at 3:22 pm

    Jeff B., we visited Saugatuck, Mich., several years ago and enjoyed it immensely. It’s a hugely pet-friendly town, and we found a cottage that allowed dogs, as we had our Yorkie with us. But we went in September, after the high season. I got the feeling that it could be a real pain in the ass when it was packed with people.

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  51. Jolene said on July 16, 2012 at 3:35 pm

    One more DC idea: For a low-key (i.e., not an element of the Smithsonian) arts experience, you might enjoy a visit to the Torpedo Factory Arts Center in Alexandria, VA. Small studios where artists both work and sell their goods. Both traditional fine arts (i.e., painting and sculpture) and high craft (jewelry, ceramics, fiber arts). They also have a Facebook page with photos that will give you a sense of the diverse activities that go on there.

    Lots of good restaurants in Alexandria too, so you could follow up an afternoon visit there w/ dinner. Also in Alexandria: me. Would be glad to meet you there or elsewhere for a meal, a drink, or coffee.

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  52. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 3:47 pm

    When the RMoneyskis start up with their inevitable “crony capitalism” bullshit about Obama, keep in mind these nutcases insist the President is part of an international Socialist conspiracy that’s been in place since baby Barack was born in Honolulu. And when they start talkin about Willard’s “rescue” of the Salt Lake Winter Games, remember this:

    According to many sources the “rescue” was actually a bail-out by our Federal government, as pointed out by Republican Senator John McCain in a speech on September 19, 2000, “However, as outlined, most of the money taken from taxpayers to foot the bill for the Salt Lake games is going to develop, build, and complete major highway and transit improvement projects – “especially those critical to the success of the Olympic Games.” This last phrase is vital to understanding the fleece game being played by cities like Salt Lake..$1.3 billion to Salt Lake City, this is preposterous, and it must stop.”

    It would seem the real hero of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics was President Bill Clinton and the Federal government, at least according to Senator Bill Bennett (R-UT), “In fact, most of the federal money was already in place before Mitt came on,“ said Senator Bob Bennett, “The Clinton Administration was completely supportive in saying these are ‘America’s Games,’ we will do whatever we can to make sure they are successful. The one concern I had was whether we would get the same degree of support from the Bush administration, which we did.”

    I wonder if a Romney Administration would be as willing to support such an effort. Evidently Mr. Romney thought government spending was a good thing before he thought it was a bad thing: “Recognizing that our government spends billions of dollars to maintain wartime capability, it is entirely appropriate to invest several hundred millions to promote peace”.


    The National Gallery of Art is a great place to visit in DC. I was once in a crowd that was teargassed on the steps, back in ’69. And meeting Jolene sounds like the DC must-see to me so far.

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  53. Jolene said on July 16, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    Thanks, Pros. I’m flattered. Perhaps I could arrange to have myself listed in the Going Out Guide I mentioned above.

    On another topic, I wanted to mention a couple of good reads that I came across this weekend. First, a sort of meditation on brushes with Mormonism by Walter Kirn, a very good writer whose work I mainly know from essays in the NYT and various other places. Second, a good NYT piece on the economic significance of marriage. This one will remind you of some of the stories that Jeff(tmmo) tells.

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  54. beb said on July 16, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    There are so many wonderful places to visit in DC.
    The Natural History Museum
    The(I can’t remember its official name) museum of social history
    The Air and Space Museum
    The Lincoln Memorial (this is a must),
    the Viet Nam Memorial and
    The National Zoo. I would not characterize the zooas being a stone’s throw from the Metro unless by stone’s throw you mean a trebuchet-throw.

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  55. Deborah said on July 16, 2012 at 4:41 pm

    Sorry, back to a previous thread about pepper jam. I’m looking for a recipe that doesn’t include canning. I have about 5 fresh jalapenos, and I don’t want to make a ton, I just want to make a small amount and I want to keep it in the fridge for a short while. I’m not sure I’m going to like it, so I don’t want to go overboard. All I can find on-line are recipes for canning and way more than I want to make. Can anyone out there help me?

    edit: another day at work with nothing to do, so I’m looking up recipes.

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  56. Jolene said on July 16, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Weird things people do on purpose

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  57. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    Aside from growing up with a couple of Mormon friends (doubt they are still LDS), what I know about it comes largely from reading John Gardner’s Mickelsson’s Ghosts (lots about the Sons of Dan), Conan-Doyle’s A Study in Scarlet, and seeing the movie September Dawn, about the Mountain Meadows Massacre, the apex of conman Joe Smith’s criminal, murderous career.

    This is from a Penn paper regarding Paterno and the Freeh report:

    The evidence shows that Mr. Paterno was made aware of the 1998
    investigation of Sandusky, followed it closely, but failed to take any
    action, even though Sandusky had been a key member of his coaching staff for
    almost 30 years and had an office just steps away from Mr. Paterno’s,” the
    report said. “At the very least, Mr. Paterno could have alerted the entire
    football staff in order to prevent Sandusky from bringing another child into
    the Lasch Building.

    But, hey, at least the all time coaching wins record is safe.

    Whether or not they do anything else, the NCAA should figure out wins to vacate so that that coaching wins record reverts to Bobby Bowden, who may have tolerated a lot of bad behavior from players at Free Shoes U, but never in a million years would have protected a sexual predator.

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  58. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 5:11 pm

    Here’s a pepper jelly receipt that (alas) requires canning, but is told in entertaining fashion with beautiful illustrative photos:


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  59. Deborah said on July 16, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    Jolene, I once had a mud bath at a super chi chi spa, Two Bunch Palms in Southern California. It was outside in a regular bath tub but it was filled with warm black mud. You sit naked in this tub, it’s private by the way. This is not something I would ever do again. If you’ve seen the Altman film, The Player with Tim Robbins, there’s a scene that was filmed at the same place.

    And in New Mexico somewhat near Abiquiu, there’s a mineral springs spa called Ojo Caliente, where they have a whole pool filled with muddy water, that people slather on and then let the mud dry on their bodies in the sun. It’s supposed to be good for the skin in some way. I have not tried it because of my previous mud bath experience. Although at Ojo, the people are wearing bathing suits when they do this.

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  60. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 16, 2012 at 5:35 pm

    Jeff B., I love Saugatuck, but as Kirk says, not sure what’s open now (“you can’t rent a villa in Tuscany this time of year”); you need to make connections with Butler Bulldog Connie — check with Nancy. She has a cabin for rent various weeks up near Empire, I believe.

    Oh, didn’t see the post. Anyhow, let this stand as a reminder! (Darn Kindle in airport limitations . . .)

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  61. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    Quelle surprise, turns out Sheldon Adelson is probably a crook and a criminal:


    Knock me over with a feather. Didn’t Clinton get reamed by the GOPers over something virtually identical to this and have to give back a wad of cash. Sure as shit.

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  62. Joe K said on July 16, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    Figured that was where you meant. Lots of ufo sightings in Gulf Breeze.
    Pilot Joe

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  63. Bill said on July 16, 2012 at 6:59 pm

    Jeff Borden @ 27: Ask Nancy for our contact info. I might have something of interest less than 2 hours from Chicago.

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  64. JWfromNJ said on July 16, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    I duuno Beb, in my book three blocks is a stone’s throw. Was just trying to be helpful. I don’t remember thinking it was a long walk, but perhaps a slingshot would be the best way to propel the stone.

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  65. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 8:05 pm

    Far as a trebuchet could fling a cow:


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  66. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 8:10 pm

    Or a satellite falling from orbit:


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  67. alex said on July 16, 2012 at 9:19 pm


    No trip to DC would be complete (for me anyway) without a little road trip over to Jamestown and Williamsburg, two of the finest places to immerse oneself in colonial Americana. Lots of interesting stuff on the DelMarVa peninsula also. And for that matter Annapolis. Hell, you could make quite the vacay out of it. I’m eager to get over there one of these days to visit the Howard University library for some Underground Railroad research; they have a considerable collection of correspondence and papers from a local family that passed as white during the nineteenth century and who were directly related to some mid-Atlantic luminaries.

    Jolene, all those pix of people playing in mud were quite something to behold. I don’t know why anyone would think it’s good for their skin. Whenever I work in the garden with my bare hands they come out dehydrated and chapped and nasty and I can only imagine that you’d have those sort of icky truncal dry skin rashes that one gets in wintertime and require copious amounts of grease in order to return to normal.

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  68. coozledad said on July 16, 2012 at 9:29 pm

    Stupid campaign staff is stupid:
    All that sweet, sweet, Sheldon Adelson money, and can’t hire a fucking lawyer who knows from copyright?

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  69. Linda said on July 16, 2012 at 9:29 pm

    Re: Las Vegas. Never saw it, never intend to. It’s about gambling, in which I have no interest, and show biz acts that don’t sound all that entertaining. As Mike Downey once wrote, there’s nothing wrong with Las Vegas that a neutron bomb couldn’t fix.

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  70. alex said on July 16, 2012 at 9:34 pm

    Amen hallelujah Linda.

    Also worth seeing near DC are Assateague and Chincoteague Islands where livestock survived from some colonial shipwrecks and today their descendants—horses and ponies mostly—have evolved enough to be able to thrive in sand dunes. With a little help, mind you.

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  71. Prospero said on July 16, 2012 at 10:11 pm

    Great kid book I hadn’t thought of in years: Misty of Chincoteague.

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  72. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 16, 2012 at 10:52 pm

    Re: #57 – Prospero, you’re thinking of Brigham Young, Smith’s successor. That’s who’s portrayed in “September Dawn.”

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  73. Kim said on July 16, 2012 at 11:07 pm

    The 87th Chincoteague Pony Swim is a week from Wednesday – I am told it is a real zoo and you really can’t see a thing. I’m sure one of these years I will get up at 3 a.m. and just drive over to gawk with all the other nuts. Maybe I’ll just go on the following Friday to see the adult horses swim back to the island.

    Alex, the archaearium at Jamestown is an amazing place, the repository of all the amazing stuff (including people) recovered there. There’s an ongoing dig to determine places at Jamestowne Settlement, which has been mapped out. The website leaves me wanting, but it’s a don’t-miss place, way better in my opinion than the almost completely recreated (not restored – recreated) Colonial Williamsburg. That’s got its cool things, and they’re trying to be more relevant to families with stuff like RevQuest, a spy game played in the colonial capital by using a smart phone or one that can text for clues (instead of dressing the girls up in long dresses and bonnets and thinking they’d want to roll a hoop in front of the Governor’s Palace all afternoon).

    Yorktown is a beautiful place at the eastern end of the Colonial Parkway (Jamestown is at the western, Williamsburg’s about in the middle). It has a terrific museum that’s being expanded to the 80,000 sq. foot American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, which will be the only museum in the U.S. to tell the story of the Revolution, with the bonus it’s in the place where independence was won. One of my favorite parts, besides the battlefields, is what hasn’t been fully interpreted yet: the discovery two years ago of a 10th shipwreck that was part of Cornwallis’ fleet (which sank in 1781!) and is submerged just offshore in the York River in 10-18 feet of water. Brian, this place is made for you and your family.

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  74. Prospero said on July 17, 2012 at 12:12 am

    Jeff, I’m aware that Brigham Young engineered the Mountain Meadows Massacre. Joseph Smith’s murders from which he fled West each time he croaked somebody were more up close and personal. The Saints hired Paiute warriors to slaughter the emigres at Mountain Meadows, but they didn’t finish the job and the Danites had to mop up. My apprehension of this horrendous incident comes mainly from reading the novel Red Water, by Judith Freeman, and from curiosity Ms. Freeman arroused. Good book, mostly about John D. Lee, B. Young’s adopted son who was tried, convicted and executed by firing squad for the massacres after he promised the Fancher group safe passage under a flag of truce to gain their trust, and muurdered the adults and kidnapped the children.

    At the time of the massacre, the LDSs claimed they were not subject to the US Constitution. Mormons and their elder in 1850s Utah had all the legitamacy of David Koresh in Texas in the 1990s, i.e. they were terrorists.

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  75. brian stouder said on July 17, 2012 at 12:22 am

    Kim – we did the Williamsburg thing a dozen years ago or so, and I was also much more impressed with Yorktown than Williamsb; Yorktown also being a Civil War site (McClellan conducted a siege there, and was flummoxed by Prince John Magruder).

    One thing I remember was how beautiful the drive was, down the parkway from Williamsburg to Yorktown; and the National Park Service ranger at Yorktown was an attractive young woman with a Russian accent, and a real love for the history there. (And indeed, I recall reading a beautiful monument that served as a memorial to all the great French help we received there, against the British)

    As Alex says, that whole region is just beautiful; we also visited the Norfolk naval base*, and did the bus tour (this was before 9/11; don’t know if they still do that). The USS George Washington was stern-in, alongside the USS Enterprise, which was bow-in, and those two ships towered over everything. Also, at that time one of the battleships was bow-in (I believe it was the USS New Jersey, BB-62), along with a an array of other warships.

    The sailor who conducted the tour was very entertaining. We had come though a tunnel off of the DelMarva peninsula and into Norfolk, and in one part of the sailor’s speel, he mentioned that the depth there at high tide is about 50′, and that the big carriers only leave or enter the Chesapeake bay at high tide, since they draw a 45 foot draft! Otherwise, he continued, they might transform the tunnel into the world’s largest carwash.

    We also liked western Virginia, and in particular Lexington. I think that whole region is as beautiful as anyplace I’ve ever seen; and the food is marvelous.

    But……I have never yet visited Washinton DC. It’s on the to-do list. I think when the 8 year old is a year or two older, it will be time to do it. I envision getting a place to stay for a week, and then each day picking one or two things to go see.

    One last travel-thing: Pam just got back from 3 days in Dorothy’s city (Pittsburgh) and she absolutely loved-loved-loved it! Our niece, who lives there, is getting married in September, and this was the women’s get-together deal. (Pam posted a bunch of pics on her facebook thing, including shots from a ride on the river, and visits to several other interesting places)

    *One day we were at a waterpark – Busch Gardens? – and fell into a conversation with a couple of moms as we watched the young folks play. When they heard that the next day’s plan was to go to Norfolk, they both exclaimed in unison “Norfolk??!! Why do you want to go THERE?”! Of course, they were Navy wives, and had no desire to go to that place as opposed to, say, just about anyplace else!

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