September 2, 2019

CAJUN ANYONE? THE ZYDECO-CAJUN PRAIRIE SCENIC BYWAY, LOUISIANA

Updated September 2019 Find the heart of Cajun country deep in Louisiana.  The Cajun culture is so exotic and mystical! Take a backroads trip to Louisiana on Highway 90 and the Zydeco-Cajun Prairie Scenic Byway in Louisiana and explore one of America’s backroad jewels. Louisiana epitomizes one of the ultimate melting pots of early America.  Since neither Stu nor I have spent much time in Louisiana, the blend of the French, Cajun, and Creole influences with fishing, rice fields and music sort of slapped us in the face and said, “Gorge on the Richness.”   The 283-mile long Zydeco-Cajun Prairie Scenic Byway hides rural and cultural treasures.   One of our favorite stops…

August 26, 2019

THE FIRST AFRICAN UNION BAPTIST CHURCH IN SAVANNAH, GA

Note: We were asked not to take photos in certain areas of the church without people in them. We were happy to comply. The pastor’s wife explained that they are discouraging photo piracy in this manner.        I cried. The power of The First African Union Baptist Church in Savannah, Georgia is overwhelming. In all of Savannah, the tour I took here continues to mean the most to me. In fact, I believe this particular tour impacted me more than any other that I’ve taken in the U.S. Why?         THE IMPORTANCE OF THIS CHURCH CANNOT BE OVER EMPHASIZED       This church has played…

August 19, 2019

Botany Bay PLANTATION on EDISTO ISLAND, South Carolina

He was shriveled, smiling and a 94-year-old volunteer. He sat on a stool by a makeshift information cart with maps of Botany Bay. He and his wife met at Valpariso and now he “catches the fish and she cooks them up.”   I was alone. He told me, “This is too beautiful a place to not bring someone with you.”  He was right-Botany Bay Plantation and Edisto Island ARE gorgeous and somewhat exotic.       At the southernmost tip of Edisto Island, you will find the Botany Bay Plantation Heritage and Wildlife Management Area and the secluded Botany Bay Beach.     The approach to Botany Bay Plantation is…

August 12, 2019

NEW REGULATIONS FOR TRAVEL: CHECK YOUR WALLET !

Heads up, seniors! There are new regulations coming for travel. PULL OUT YOUR WALLET and make certain you are ready.   No, the new regulations won’t make money fly out of your wallet, but your wallet does contain the key to travel beginning in 2020. Look at your drivers’ license. Does it have a yellow star on it? If you don’t have a yellow star on your license, you need to obtain it by 2020!   You MUST have a yellow star in the upper right hand corner of the card or you DON’T HAVE A “REAL ID.” YOU MUST SHOW A REAL ID TO TAKE ANY DOMESTIC COMMERCIAL FLIGHT…

August 5, 2019

GALLERY NIGHT IN PENSACOLA FLORIDA

Gallery Night Each month during the year on the 3rd week of the month, the street along Palafox in downtown Pensacola, Florida becomes a party. The street is filled with people both young and old as vendors display their goods including all sorts of local artists showing off their work. Of course, you can find all sorts of food vendors too. Most of the downtown stores, pubs, and restaurants remain open during the event. And there are folks entertaining you along the street, from music to artists you hear or see it. Each month has a different theme.  The dates and themes for 2019: Jan. 18 — Lunar New Year,…

July 29, 2019

THE BULLS ON THE STREETS OF PENSACOLA

 THE Running Of The Bulls On the morning of Saturday July 20th,  it was The Pensacola Running of the Bulls time that took place through the streets of downtown Pensacola, Florida. This event is modeled after the world famous Festival of San Fermin in Pamplona, Spain. Even though it was a cloudy overcast morning with rain in sight, the event drew a large turnout. As the runners took off, The Bulls were not far behind. Of course, the runners must make it through the harsh The Gauntlet at the end of their run. Rules & Safety ( from https://pensabulls.com/about) Run at Your Own Risk Participants are not allowed to touch, push, kick,…

July 22, 2019

WALK THROUGH ROUGH AND TUMBLE SILVERTON, COLORADO

Dodge City. Tombstone. Durango. We’ve been to them all but the old west town that still remains the most authentic is rough and tumble Silverton, Colorado.  At 9,000 feet, the mining town of Silverton was a magnet for miners, saloon keepers, and the few women who kept the men company.     The frontier flavor of Silverton isn’t fake and recreated for tourists.The western free spirit remains today. That may be due to the fact that the town is still very remote in the San Juan Mountains. Getting to Silverton is an adventure in itself! This is the land of “the 14-ers”, the peaks in Colorado that are 14,000 feet or…

July 15, 2019

MONUMENT VALLEY NAVAJO TRIBAL PARK IN UTAH

Reaching the park mid-day in late May was like opening the door into a fantasy-land. The scale and quiet strength of the place cannot be described adequately. The accurate name of the park is “Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park” and it will take your breath away!   Who doesn’t have Monument Valley on their bucket list?    This park is NOT a national park but is located in a part of a 25,000 square mile Navajo Nation Reservation. Therefore, Monument Valley is administered by the Navajo Nation.     WHEN TO GO     Monument Valley can be very hot in the summer months. We visited in late May and the weather…

July 8, 2019

ONE OF THE WORLD’S GREAT RAILROADS: DURANGO TO SILVERTON, COLORADO

All Aboard! Hop on a coal-fired, steam-powered train that still uses the 3-foot narrow gauge tracks that were constructed to haul silver and gold ore from the San Juan Mountains in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado! This trip is truly a thrill! You HAVE to take this ride!       Frommers lists the 3-foot narrow gauge Durango-Silverton, Colorado Railroad one of America’s 10 most fun and this train trip has been called, “one of the best in the world.” The views are jaw dropping along the route of this “Old West” steam train! This train line is a designated National Historic Landmark.     The 45-mile route takes approximately 10 hours roundtrip. We…

July 1, 2019

THE NEEDLES DISTRICT OF CANYONLANDS NATIONAL PARK IN UTAH

Towering rock needles, arches and canyons ribbed with bright bands of red and white rock await you in the Needles District of Canyonlands! We explored the Needles District in the southeastern part of Canyonlands National Park. The “Needles” was named for the colored spires of Cedar Mesa Sandstone that dominate the landscape and may be considered the most “backcountry” of the Canyonlands districts.     The landscape is indescribable and we found the experience one-of-a-kind! This district has a visitor center, ranger programs, a scenic drive and campgrounds, including the Squaw Flat Campground.        There are four districts in Canyonlands:   The Needles District The Sky District The…