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Not on the Road, USA, Fall 2022

The End of the Journey


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We are back in Maine. The long road trip is done.

We had a lovely visit with our kiddos over Thanksgiving. Since John was working Thanksgiving Day, we spent most of the day playing games with Margaret and hanging out. Our "feast," such as it was, we enjoyed on Friday. After enjoying some really delicious pastries that Margaret made for us, the four of us went to see "Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery" Friday afternoon. We all really enjoyed the film. Then, we gathered around the coffee table at our Airbnb (no dining room or dining table) and feasted on roast chicken (with only four of us, it didn't make sense to roast a turkey), veggies, stuffing, cranberry sauce (from a can, of course, since it's important to Joseph that there be visible ridges in his cranberry sauce), butternut squash soup and pumpkin pie. And, we capped off the evening with a game of Settlers of Catan. I won!

Saturday involved a long drive from Philadelphia to Maine, trying not to get too crazy in the midst of the traffic in Connecticut and Massachusetts. Finally, we arrived back at our house around 6:00. We were very happy to be back in our comfy bed. Sunday, I was back at work. Alas.

We will dream of our next adventure: Peru in the spring.

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Posted by ORWAT 22:31 Archived in USA Comments (0)

On the Road Again, Day 43, USA

A Day with Margaret, Mostly


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This morning was all about getting groceries, etc. Joe, Margaret and I will be together today and tomorrow (John is working). We'll wait until Friday to have our Thanksgiving dinner, when John has the day off.

The afternoon was spent checking out Margaret's painting studio and wandering around the city. We gathered a few additional supplies for the next couple of days and worked our way through the throngs at Reading Terminal Market.

The weirdest part of the day happened near City Hall. There's a Holiday Market and an ice rink,etc. And, then there's one of those painted boards with holes cut out, so you can put your faces through. This one was entitled "Happy Holidays From The Christmas Village in Philadelphia." At first, nothing seems out of place. There's Santa and reindeer and gifts, etc. But, when you look closely, there's a curvy woman all in yellow just next to Santa. Who's she? Santa's "special helper"?

What do you think?
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Posted by ORWAT 23:47 Archived in USA Tagged philadelphia Comments (0)

On the Road Again, Day 42, USA

The Band's Back Together!


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We woke up this morning in Pittsburgh. The plan for the morning: a visit to the Duquesne Incline (funicular). It's really the reason why we came to Pittsburgh. A funicular. Joseph loves funiculars (it has "fun" in the word).

We set out on a nice walk:
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At some point, we weren't sure we were on the right track (it's not well-marked). Joseph asked a guy who was walking toward us.
Joseph: "Hey, is this the way to the funicular?"
Guy: "What? The what?"
Joseph: "The funicular." And, then he pointed in the general direction.
Guy: "Oh, you mean the Incline."
Joseph: "Ok . . . "
Guy: "It's just down the there. That's where I'm coming from."
Joseph: "Thanks!"

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At the top, we had a great view:
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Then, it was time to get back to the car and head to Philadelphia. On our way into the city, we noticed this tall building that looks like it's giving the finger to somewhere west-- Harrisburg? Pittsburgh?
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We settled into our Airbnb and then met the kiddos for dinner at the delightful Parc in Rittenhouse Square. The band's back together!
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Posted by ORWAT 02:37 Archived in USA Comments (0)

On the Road Again, Day 41, USA

Entering Enemy Territory (and a sort of book report)


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Travel day: Louisville, Kentucky to Pittsburgh, PA

For a fan of the NE Patriots, visiting Pittsburgh can feel a little weird, although I'm reminded of that epic, epic playoff game in 2002, when the Steelers were so confident of a victory in the AFC Championship that they had already packed their bags and had them lined up, ready to go to the Super Bowl BEFORE the game even started. Obviously, they weren't impressed with that fill-in upstart named Tom Brady. But, those packed suitcases ended up only going home. Take that, Pittsburgh!

Joe and I had thought of a whole bunch of other possibilities for today, on our way to Philadelphia. But, the cold weather convinced us not to find a long hike for this afternoon or tomorrow morning and to head to Pittsburgh. We arrived this afternoon and wandered about, checking out some of the interesting architecture and decorations for Christmas.
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I should also report on our Kentucky book selection. After a great deal of debate when we set out for Kentucky, we first tried First Blood by David Morrell, the book that gave birth to Rambo. I've never seen any of the Rambo films, but I guess they are (or at least the first one is) set in the Northwest. But, the book is set in Kentucky. We listened to a couple of hours. We weren't impressed. Life's too short to read bad books. We decided to move on.

So, the second choice: A Place on Earth by Wendell Berry. This is a very slow moving story, but we've stuck with it and things are starting to get interesting. It's certainly a very well-written and thoughtful novel about a small Kentucky town and the people who live there. We haven't quite finished, but when we do, we'll share a thought or two.

Posted by ORWAT 23:33 Archived in USA Comments (0)

On the Road Again, Day 40, USA

The Greatest


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Louisville, Kentucky

We started the day with a little exercise and then it was time to check out one of Louisville's UCC churches, St. John's. The church is beautiful, but has a tiny congregation, like so many of its sister churches. Worship was very nice and the people were very friendly and interested in learning more about what we were doing. We did not experience what we've encountered at other churches, where people see visitors and immediately pounce on the potential new members. When we mention that we are just visiting, their faces fall and the conversation wraps up quickly. At St. John's, the people were genuinely friendly and were glad that we had decided to spend part of our short time in Louisville at their church.
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After church, we strolled down to the Muhammad Ali Center, to check out the exhibits and to learn more about Muhammad's Ali life and career (he was born and raised in Louisville).
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Then, it was time for a snack, although it took some doing to find a snack. A Sunday afternoon in November is a very quiet time in Louisville. We finally found a place. And, then we strolled around Downtown and Old Louisville.
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In the last photo, if you look closely, there's a red bike above the door. The story about that bike can be found here:
https://spalding.edu/columbia-gym-historical-marker-unveiled-where-muhammad-ali-learned-to-box/

Now, we are off to dinner.

Posted by ORWAT 22:18 Archived in USA Tagged st. church of center christ united ali john's muhammad louisville Comments (0)

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