Friday, June 12th, 2015
DC reporting in, #18: Presidential Mansions (3-5)
Close to the southern end of Shenandoah National Park one can find the plantations / mansions of three former US Presidents – Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, James Madison’s Montpelier, and James Monroe’s Ash Lawn-Highland. Over the course of the weekend I went to see all three (they are pretty close together), and listened to three different versions of “how one might best try to integrate the fact that they owned slaves with still adoring these guys 100000billion%” – none of them worked all that well, frankly.
Ash Lawn – Highland
The yellow part of the house was added on by later owners.
What is left of the old Ash Lawn – Highland is tiny, but apparently there was an annex right where the yellow part of the house now is – still, it remains the smallest of the three Presidential homes, by far. Of the three I liked Montpelier best, both because it was far less busy than Monticello and because they had an interesting tour on James Madison and the Constitution, which meandered slowly from empty room to empty room and took you around the Estate in 2.5 hours, rather than the 30 minutes rush-rush affair that the overrun Monticello is.
Although at Monticello, in my opinion, they do the better job of dealing with the question of slavery.
And, that all said, the tour guide at Ash Lawn-Highland probably knew the most about her subject, of the three.
Tuesday, May 19th, 2015
DC Reporting in, #14: K&S in DC!
To decrease the backlog a bit here’s another report from DC, right on the heels of yesterday’s one! Also connected to it, so … for, you see, right after FKO and our CN Tower adventures K & S spent a week in DC, visiting museums, going to concerts, and doing tons of other cool stuff (some of which I got to participate in! :-)). I did library things during the daytime, obviously, but we did manage to meet up quite a bit on weekday evenings and on the weekend, and our adventures included good food, cycling down the Mall, a great Mouths of Babes house concert, a cool dinner in Alexandria with S & P (who I got to meet there for the first time!), and a visit to Mount Vernon.
Mouths of Babes
the view from George Washington’s back porch
Saturday, May 3rd, 2014
Universitas Tartuensis II
And here is the daytime view that goes with the last picture. Last day of the EASLCE conference coming up!
Sunday, June 9th, 2013
The Conference I went to last weekend included an excursion to Bamberg (where it did not rain for a whole hour). I took very few photos there, as we were doing the city tour at quite a brisk walk. But I took some, mostly while we stopped and were informed about historical events, and here is one of them. :-) (And, yes, it’s HDR.)
Tuesday, August 7th, 2012
The path from the last picture leads to, as it were, la Ruine de Château de Vieux-Windstein – the ruins of the old Windstein Castle – and is located in the Alsace region of France, where this photo here was also taken (namely, in the small village of Reichshoffen).
If you want to see more photos of Vieux-Windstein or the Alsace in general, I’ve added some to my “La France” photo album (newly created, photos from France were previously all bunched into “Other Places, Other Views.” (I also photographed some plants and animals while in France, but those photos went into the respective “Plants” and “Animals” albums [ :-) ])).
Monday, March 26th, 2012
As you can see from the heading of the post, I am still in Savannah. There was so much left to see and do here that I didn’t get finished yesterday (and my tour ticket was valid for today as well) that I decided to spend the day here, after all, and to make my way to Atlanta tomorrow. This whole trip has been one where I was getting less milage done than I once thought, and somehow doing things later than I thought I’d do them – appologies to all that I met up with / thought to meet up with / did not manage to meet up with this time around. It’s been really good though, and since I did not have any firm itinerary, other than knowing when my flight was leaving and when I had to go back, no itinerary to be scrapped, and I just have to come back and see New Orleans and Charleston and the Smoky Mountains and Rock City etc some other time. The Georgia Guidestones are still firmly on the agenda for tomorrow, though, traffic and time permitting!
Sunday, March 25th, 2012
I’m in Savannah, where the houses are old (well, comparatively), the oaks are live, and the air is humid. I spent a good time of the day driving here, and as soon as I left Florida the sunshine was gone (it came back later in the day, but it rained a lot first), so that was a weird kind of mirror to my arrival in Florida – clouds and rain until I reached the state boarder driving down, and clouds and rain as soon as I left. Since I only got here at around 2pm I decided to go on one of those trolley tours that give you an overview of the city, and ended up doing the tour twice (it’s a 2-day ticket [since I bought it after 2pm]), since the first time it rained pretty solidly and just as we finished the sun came out, and one could not really see too much or well through the plastic tarpaulin they covered the trolley with to keep the rain out.
Went walking for a bit after the tour, until the sun went down – I’ve pretty much turned into a flower that closes up for the night when the sun goes down, or like one of those weird people that fall asleep once the sunshine goes in that SG episode (it was a SG episode, right? Where people also aged really quickly, due to some bug-thing?): once the sun goes, I kind of wilt and want to sit down and not move again – I pretty much eat, update here, and then sleeeeeeep. Night entertainment and events are kind of wasted on me – but morning events are totally my thing. I’m usually out the door by around 8am, so it’s all good in my book (only some places could open earlier :-)). Let’s see what happens when I need to time-shift back to UTC+1 in two days!