The Trip is Right Around The Corner

I’ve been so busy and had so much on my mind that I didn’t realize my Tennessee adventure is fast approaching. What made me think of it was an email I got from the concierge  at the resort. It was a very nice email with a list of upcoming events and directions to the resort.

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One thing that I was very disappointed to learn is that the  Aerial Tram will be closed this year from April 28 through May 22, 2014 for additional scheduled preventive maintenance and updates. Of course my trip falls in that time frame :( That was something I really wanted to do.

As if to make up for taking away one attraction I ran across the Gatlinburg Space Needle.

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I loved the space needle in Seattle so maybe this will be a good substitute for the Tram.  The  advertisement encourages you to  “Ride the glass elevators over 400 feet and step out to a breathtaking 360 degree view of the Smokies by day or Downtown Gatlinburg’s lights by night.”

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There’s also a chairlift : Gatlinburg Sky lift. Enjoy a peaceful ride as the chairlift takes you to the mountain’s top and back, providing breathtaking views of the Smoky Mountains.

Hop on from the heart of downtown Gatlinburg, and experience a tranquil escape as the Sky Lift gently glides over the Little Pigeon River and then climbs to the overlook at an elevation of 1,800 feet. The vantage point and views are unparalleled. You’ve arrived at Gatlinburg’s #1 scenic overlook!

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That sounds like a must do with the camera. Nice high shots of the Great Smokey Mountains!

I may not mind the tram being down after all.

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What’s Your Favorite Easter Candy?

Easter is almost here. I remember Easter Sunday services. They were a big deal when I was growing up. We always had on our EASTER Sunday best.

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You see there was our Sunday best but on Easter we really went all out.

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We had hats (Easter bonnets) and white gloves and the first time I was allowed to wear stockings and pointy high heels was on an Easter Sunday. I remember one year Jackie Kennedy had made pill box hats the fashion so that year  I had  to wear one on Easter.

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I went to church every Sunday. I was active in the choir but my Dad only went to church on High Holidays…Christmas and Easter. I remember one Easter I had the Easter Sunday Solo. I was scared to death but so proud that both my Mom and Dad were in the congregation that day.

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After the church service we’d all stay for the traditional Easter Egg hunt.

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Up in the Adirondacks it was not unusual for snow to still be on the ground where there was shade. Snow banks and snow patches were perfect places for those colored eggs. I wonder if my old church still has Easter Egg hunts.

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Back home we got our Easter Baskets. They always had a chocolate bunny as the center peice but the really special Easter candy was a sugar egg. I never see them anymore. They were so pretty and delicate. They were almost magical.  Eventually the egg got eaten just like the chocolate bunny and the jelly beans but part of me always hated to eat something so pretty.

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As an adult I could almost believe that I dreamed it up but I remember the way the sugar melted on my tongue. It was like eating a sugar cube. But I could never find them anywhere. Then about 6 years ago I found them in a little candy shop in Old Saybrook , CT. I said I’d go back to get one at Easter but I never did.

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Recently I did a search on the internet and I found them. There weren’t too many places to get them and they are really expensive but they are just as beautiful as I remember.

So what’s your favorite Easter Candy?

 

Posted in Food, Holidays, special occasion | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Photo of the Week ~ 15

We did a little better in the Photo of the Week area. Seals off Plymouth just nosed out the Dandy Daffodil by 1 point!

The week 15 tallies are in. The Photo of the Week with the most hits, likes, shares and/or comments is  Seals Off Plymouth with a total of 26 points.

Votes calculated from activity at  www.dustyroadsphotos.com.

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To Order Prints click here: http://dustyroadsphotos.zenfolio.com/p161572686/h285f6d88#h285f6d88

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Just Another Monday

I got myself all excited in anticipation of yesterday. The weather folks  said warm weather, no rain nor snow nor sleet. Temps mid 70′s maybe even 80 in some places. Oh yeah I am all worked up. Where will I go? What will I do with such a perfect day before me?

I was so excited I woke up at 4 am. The cats looked at me like I was nuts.

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I peeked out the window at the pre dawn and saw…FOG! A thick gray blanket obscured everything.  Ok back to bed. After all 4 am is almost the middle of the night.

4 hours later I hopped out of bed. It was  pretty dark for 8 AM even with the curtains closed. I peeked out  the window and it was still foggy. Not as thick as at 4 am but still a damper on the start of my day.

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I got the cats fed, kitty litter cleaned, my breakfast done and shower out of the way in record time when my phone rang. I almost didn’t answer it but easier to just deal with it and get it out of the way. Turns out it was a work call. Oh well I was a good girl and took care of it.

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Time now to take the trash out and decide where I’m headed with the camera. I was surprised by how windy it was. I had thought about going to the arboretum but with winds like this I decided to see if the ocean might be crashing…surfs up dude!

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As I grabbed my camera the phone rang again. Another work call. What’s going on? No one ever calls me back! I took care of that one and headed out the door again.

I stopped at Oliver Mill first. There were car loads of people which as usual translates to no birds. Only 2 gulls and 1 Canada goose. I left the folks to wander the stream looking for fish and headed to Plymouth. Next stop Manomet Point.

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By the time I got there the sun had completely disappeared behind the clouds. The wind was still blowing but there were only a few whitecaps, no “angry sea”, no seals. :( Not to be discouraged I took out the big lens and attached it to the camera. I recently read an article about hand holding these big telephotos and I wanted to try it out.

I spotted a little bird’s head sticking up over a rock. I think it’s a cormorant. So here goes nothing. I hefted that big old lens up , focused and snap snap. I took 3 shots.  2 were only so- so but this one isn’t half bad for my first try.

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I wrapped up my day by stopping by the park where the old Osprey nest is located. I had my binoculars today. And there is a osprey on the nest!

I may not have had the most successful picture day but it was a good day anyway.

Posted in Birds, commentary, Massachusetts, Photography, Plymouth, Weather | Tagged , , | 6 Comments

First Annual Herring Run Festival

What was that I was saying about missing out on things because they were on the weekend and I worked? A perfect example was this past weekend.

I saw signs the day I drove over to the Grist Mill Pond; “Oliver Mill festival April 11-13″.  I’d never heard of the Oliver Mill festival.

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I like to take pictures  at the Herring Run. There are bridges, stone ruins , a park with picnic tables and of course the fish ladder. There’s usually gulls  and birds and often a Great Blue Heron for photo subjects.

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Last year was a bit harder for photos than previous years because it was very crowded with people fishing and trying to kayak. All the human activity drove away some of the wildlife so I spent less time there and more time checking out alternate locations.

But back to the festival.  Another photographer I know attended on Saturday.

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http://photobee1.blogspot.com/2014/04/the-first-annual-middleborough.html?spref=fb

I was going to take a run down there in the morning Sunday only to find out it didn’t start until 11 am. I’d just have time to get there and have to turn around and come home to work. So I did the next best thing…I looked it up on the internet.

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I found this little blip:

MIDDLEBOROUGH — This old town’s first big push to draw in tourists will be launched this weekend with a three-day party to celebrate a centuries-old annual phenomenon.

Organizers expect thousands to gather for the First Annual Herring Run Festival, based primarily at Oliver Mill Park on Route 44 but with other activities planned all over town.

Crowds of alewife and blueback herring, as they do every spring, are already making their way up the Nemasket River, adjacent to the park and considered the largest herring run in the state.

Last year, more than 850,000 herring made the trek to the 5,000 acres of spawning and nursery habitat in the river’s upper reaches where they lay eggs before returning to salt water.

That explains why I’d never heard of it before, this is the first year. Maybe next year I’ll be on that Mon- Fri schedule and able to attend for myself.

For really interesting comments and great photos check out : https://www.facebook.com/pages/Photo-Bee-1-Photographing-the-Natural-World-Around-Us/191608700932223

 

 

 

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Change is Good

Change is often hard. This coming from the person who packed up and moved to a new state where they knew no one and knew nothing about  the state.

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I was young and restless and fearless. Now I still get itchy feet. It comes out in my travels but I also have a stronger sense of home. I like my adopted state, maybe not the cold winters but there’s a lot of other good stuff to recommend it. (No digs about “Taxachusetts”).

Looks like change is once again headed my way. If it happens I guess you can say I went reluctantly  which is surprising because I really want it to happen. It all boils down to change.

Rumor has it that there’s a position with another department  opening up. The powers that be have brought the opportunity to my attention and it would be a fun job. Off the record I have been told I can keep working from home (once I’m trained). I’d be eligible for bonuses. Bonuses are very good. My budget has been quite tight without the overtime I used to get at my old company. So what am I hesitating for? The schedule change required.

I feel like I will have to mourn my old schedule.

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I know that’s funny but for 10 years I worked weekends at my old company and I have continued as a Night and Weekend worker in my new job. I’m used to having weekdays to go to the doctor, dentist, bank, vet and all those other errands that can’t be done easily on the weekend. I am  used to having quiet hiking spaces and deserted attractions. The crowds show up on weekends.

The new position requires Monday – Friday. The opportunity is too good not to try for it so I’ve been trying to get myself thinking positive about the schedule. Many events and activities are only on the weekends and I miss out unless I take a day off. Some examples are AAA Travel Expo… usually Thurs- Sun; Riverquest boat rides on the Connecticut River, again usually weekends; The Spring Flower Shows.. always weekends; summer Fairs, Autumn Harvest Festivals and so on.

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So I guess there’s a lot to be said for being conforming and working like the rest of the world. Now if I can only get the job. :)

 

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SUPERVOLCANO and The Mis-information Superhighway

You saw it on YouTube, then Turner Networks and even the local newspapers. Bison are fleeing Yellowstone National Park. Earthquakes are “unzipping” the super volcano caldera!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rMSPrHXvyws

Is a mega disaster imminent?

Not likely says Park Spokesman Dan Hottle. The bison are actually running toward the interior of Yellowstone right toward the ancient 55 X 18 mile magma chamber, the location of the past super volcano explosions.

The Video originally posted on March 20 and sparked stories as far away as Australia. Mainstream news outlets picked up the story and the video went viral. By now more than 700,000 people (make that 700,001) have viewed the alleged bison exodus.

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When news of Sunday’s 4.8 magnitude earthquake hit the airwaves, Turner Radio Network broadcast ” It appears the super volcano is unzipping !” The earthquake, which was the largest in 34  years, was actually centered north of the caldera boundary. It was generated by a system of fault lines, not magma.

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Yellowstone has thousands of tremors every year. How could it not with geysers exploding and mud flats bubbling.  There have been more than 250 tremors in just the past month. It is business as usual for the geothermal area.

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But just in case the bison are trying to commit a mass suicide Spokesperson Hottle  says he’s  ready. “I’ve got my tent packed and a couple of bags  of microwave popcorn. I’ll be ready!”

Just goes to show you can’t believe everything you see on the internet.

Oh one last comment for our Russian friends…Old Faithful will not burn down. :)

( Last year there was a 2 tree fire 8 miles south of Old Faithful. A Russian television station called asking if Old Faithful was going to burn down. )

 

 

 

Posted in animals, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments