Saturday, December 30, 2006

The Real Proof about Bridge to Nowhere

OK, so the last post was really a tease.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

The Bridge to Nowhere Exists, and Here is My Proof

Back on September 23, my wife Julie, co-workers Jamie and Jill, and I all decided to hike to bridge to nowhere. We didn't make it.

On December 16, I found out why. I did the hike by myself that day, and covered the distance from trailhead to bridge and back in about 5 hours. That includes a 30 minute break at the bridge, four stops to change from boots to sandals and back, and re-filling my water twice using our filter system.

The "trail" itself has been washed away in places and is difficult to find, unless you know to REALLY look for it. Sometimes on the way up the trail, I was actually climbing up the hillside when I didn't need to in order to look for a trail that I thought was there but wasn't. It's kind of crazy. But so worth it, as these pictures can attest.

The story of the bridge, by the way, is that the Republic of California decided in the mid-1930's to build this road up the canyon where the East Fork of the San Gabriel River flows down the San Gabriel Mountains. A huge flood in 1938 destroyed a lot of the road, but left the bridge intact. Today, bungee jumpers routinely make the trek out there for the jump off of the bridge.

(Having problems getting the photos to load, but will do so later.)

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

More Budapest ... on the Train

This past (Christmas) weekend, I was in both Sacramento and Tucson. Julie and I drove both places. I don't even want to know the total mileage that was covered. I'm afraid to ask. It would have been so much easier in a plane ... other than the airport crap. And it would have been easier on a train ... if Amtrak knew how to stay on time, and had a decent amount of service in this country. But alas .....

So, with transportation in mind, and thinking back to a year and a half ago and how easy it was to get around Europe, I am posting several more shots from Budapest today, all of the train station there. If I remember correctly, the station that we arrived at and left from was the Keleti Station.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Farmer's Market, Budapest

Since I'm about to get ready to leave for the Farmer's Market in Pasadena (I hope it is open today, I haven't checked!) I thought I would post these photos from a permanent farmer's market that I visited in Budapest. It's in an old train station there.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Another Old Diner (6 & 40, West of Denver)

Found this place on my way to Omaha for the 2002 Preserving Historic Roads Conference. It is west of Denver along current I-70. I don't remember the exact location, but I believe it to be in Idaho Springs.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Individualism (101 Near Solvang)

Been involved in an interesting discussion over the last 24 hours about chain stores and how crappy they are. Well, I feel that way, and so do others (albeit for different reasons). Unfortunately there are actually Wal-Mart supporters out there who just do not understand individuality and personal flair and flavor. They probably buy pre-made gingerbread men, too, so that they all look alike.

Anyway, it's made me think about locally owned businesses lately. And when I opened my photos folder on my computer this morning, to see what locally owned business I had photos of, the first one that showed up in the list was this one, and it made me wonder whatever happened to the owners of this place after all the chain restaurants opened along the 101 at the nearby exit to Solvang.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

More Salzburg - Train Station

This was taken from the Salzburg train station on our way out of town to head to Budapest. I loved riding the trains in Europe. Very close to on time every time. Very pleasant and enjoyable, and an opportunity to see the countryside a little bit, too. Definitely beats flying, and although you don't have the flexibility that you do while driving, it is a lot less stressful, too. Now if only Amtrak were as extensive and on-schedule!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

More Salzburg

I have to keep this short as I am about to walk out the door on a long hike. But I wanted to post more from Salzburg, since I loved that city so much. Both of these shots were taken from Salzburg Castle, and show that just outside the city is a lot of open, agricultural space.

Friday, December 08, 2006

The Real Castles - Prague, Salzburg, Budapest

With yesterday's toy castle still fresh in my mind, I thought I would post photos of each of the three major real castles that Julie and I saw on our honeymoon.

First up is Prague Castle, where Julie and I started and finished our honeymoon. Next in line and the next we visited is a view from Salzburg Castle of the city of Salzburg below. And finally, a few of several statues in an entrance to Budapest Castle (this is one of my favorite shots from our honeymoon!).

Thursday, December 07, 2006

From Flowers to Toys (More Prague)

Yesterday's warm and fuzzy flowers brought me back today. I thought I would post a few photos from another one of our stops in Prague. One of the greatest things about that trip was walking around with a goal or a destination in mind, but being open to what you might see in your travels.

One of our finds was the toy museum at Prague Castle. Very interesting collection. Very difficult to describe. My favorite was quite possibly the oversized pig (for its location, anyway) in the gates of a toy castle. Not sure what the statement is that is being made by it, but definitely funny.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Back - Finally (More from Prague)

It's been about THREE WEEKS since my last post here. I've been pretty bad, I know. I guess I am just a little tired of the Holly Daze thing already. I was on the road the entire week of Thanksgiving, with more than enough going on to keep me busy. Hopefully now I can get back into the routine of posting here every day.

With the upcoming Holly Daze in mind, I couldn't decide whether to look for a photo with snow and cold in mind, or something warm and fuzzy. Warm and fuzzy wins. These two photos from the Botanical Gardens (Botanicka Zahrada) in Prague brought back some great memories of walking around that city and enjoying a completely different time, place, and culture. And hopefully will be something that will remind me to come back here tomorrow morning.