Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Mississippi Gulf Coast - Bay St Louis

Bay St Louis is about 25 miles west of Biloxi on route 90. It is a delightful drive along the coast. My son, Todd, was in the area on business and recommended that we visit. The village has little shops and antique stores in abundance.

We stopped at the old train depot. Pictured below. I kind of thought there was a Spanish influence in the design. The depot housed a small museum. There were a number of displays of Mardi Gras costumes which are pictured below.

There were some examples of wood carving sculpture.

We drove by this boarding house from a bygone era. Very quaint.

We ere looking for a place to have lunch and happened across the Blind Tiger a pet friendly restaurant. We have never been able to bring our dogs in with us prior. We decided to take them in and if it did not work out we could always run them out to the car.

Pillo sat in Carol's lap and Gizmo sat in the seat beside me. I did share my burger with Gizmo my Yorkie. Neither dog made a sound. We  walked a bit along the waterfront before heading back.

Mississippi Gulf Coast - Biloxi

We recently spent several days visiting the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Biloxi was our home base for the week. Almost every building is new since Katrina. The Biloxi Lighthouse took a terrific hit from the storm and many thought it would be lost. However the damage was fixed and it continues to be a beacon it the center strip of route 90 in Biloxi.


Across from the light is the newly rebuilt visitor center. This replaces the old anti bellum building that served as the visitor center that was destroyed. While the new center is beautiful, the prior center had a certain atmosphere that is gone forever.

The water here is very calm. The beach is protected by a barrier island. Below Carol is standing on the boardwalk.

The decision was made not to cut down all the trees that were damaged by Katrina. Instead they were turned into wood sculpture by local artisans.

Sea oats are being planted in several areas along the beach to prevent erosion. Although not pictured several areas of the beach were being groomed by heavy equipment.
 We were blessed with great weather. The first day the temperature reached 80 degrees. We had our dogs with us and they enjoyed walking on the sand.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Ocala, Florida

During the cooler months, Carol and I only travel if the destination is warmer than home. We each had a reason to travel to Ocala, Florida. We had become friendly with the owners of Yards n Yarn when it was located in a nearby town. They moved the business to Ocala for family reasons. The business is prospering due to their hard work and many hours. Pictured is the sign above their store and below that, Carol is with Terri the owner. Carol added to her stash of yarn
 and we enjoyed talking and browsing.

My reason for a visit to Ocala was to visit Big Daddy Don Garlits drag racing museum and the antique car museum on the same property. Generations of drag racers and fans know of Don Garlits. He was not only very successful and holder of many records, he was also an innovator. He developed the protector shield over the transmission housing, the first to place the engine behind the driver.

The museum is filled with drag racing machines including, slingshot dragsters, funny cars, and modified street cars.  There is one room devoted to engines. Below are several pictures taken inside the museum.

We were allowed to bring our dogs into the museum. They seemed to also enjoy the visit and we kept them away from the tires.

We also visited the building devoted to antique cars. The first picture is of a 1940 ford coupe. In my opinion, this is the most beautiful designed automobile.

Below is a picture of a Studebaker. One of the guys in my hometown drove one just like this one. His was more green.

Carol enjoyed the museum as much as I did, and I enjoyed visiting Yards n Yarn. We had a very nice time.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Todd's Visit

 My son, Todd, came for a short visit. He wanted to spend some quality time with me. He also is a Civil War enthusiast and wanted to visit the two forts that were protecting Mobile Bay during the Civil War. The Naval Aviation Museum located in Pensacola was on the way. I wanted to show him some of the aircraft that flew off the USS Saratoga when I was stationed with VA 36 aboard the ship. Below Todd is pictured on the ground floor of the museum. Admission is free, and if readers of this blog are ever in the area, it is well worth spending time there,

The Pensacola Light house is located within sight of the museum. Todd wanted to climb the 177 steps to the top. I had climbed earlier in the year and waited in the keepers quarters.

 Pictured below is a cannon just outside the entrance to Fort Morgan. Fort Morgan is located on the east side of Mobile Bay.

Todd reading one of the many informational signs within Fort Morgan.

After leaving Fort Morgan we drove around the Bay and stayed overnight. The following morning we went to visit Fort Gaines located on the west side of Mobile Bay. Below Todd is reading one of the many informational descriptions of the activities of the battle.

Following are three more pictures within Fort Gaines.

Following is a picture of the Sand Point Light visible from Fort Gaines.

Below one of the many oil platforms located in Mobile Bay. When the wind is right one can smell the crude oil.

We were going to take the ferry over to the east side. The wait was several hours as the queue was amazingly long. We took the time to drive north to I 10 and we picked up I 110 that connected up to route 98 and we drove along the coast to home in Panama City Beach.

I enjoy visiting Civil War sites with Todd. He knows the history and he imparts his knowledge to me. We visited Gettysburg a couple of years ago which was another enjoyable time with my son.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Pennsylvania Dutch

 We went to Rhode Island this past September to visit family. Carol had never been to Pennsylvania Dutch. We stopped there for a few days before we went to Michigan to visit more family. The Amish farms are so neat and perfectly laid out. Following are two pictures of a typical farm in Lancaster County.

We were told that the Old Country Store in Intercourse was the best place to check out hand made quilts. We arrived there a few minutes before the store opened. I was able to take the following picture of a local Amish horse and buggy. The Amish do not like having their person photographed, but the buggy was OK. They actually move at a good pace. All their horses are really very beautiful.

The Old Country Store. If you check out the bottom of the sign, it advertised the fabric sale. It seems like fabric was on sale everywhere that day.

I was thinking of purchasing a local hand made Amish quilt. We looked at several designs. I liked this quilt as I felt the colors were bright and also happy colors. I felt it depicted how I feel - happy. Picture below is that quilt on our bed here in Florida.

The following picture was taken in one of the several fabric stores that Carol visited during our stay. Needless to say, she added considerably to her fabric stash. She has several projects planned.

We wanted to eat in a typical local restaurant. We were pointed to Good and Plenty. The food was exceptional both in quality and quantity.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

American Quilters Museum

 Carol started quilting about three years ago. I told her about the American Quilters Museum in Paducah, Kentucky. She expressed interest and I promised her that I would take her there. Its been about two years since I promised and every time we  planned to go something came up and we did not go. Driving home from the Black Hills seemed like a good time to stop in Paducah. We dedicated a day at  the museum and Hancock of Paducah, a very fine fabric store, which Carol really loved.

The museum does not allow any photography inside and we, of course, honored their rules. I did see one lady using her cell phone to take pictures.  Below are three picture of the outside of the museum.

Outside we saw a display of bronze statues honoring the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

A short walk from the museum and we were on the banks of the Ohio River. The picture does not show how quick the current was that day.

This was our last stop and we left the next day for home. We had a great trip. We both want to go back to stay in the cabin just to relax and read without all the driving to the sites. Well, maybe we would go back to the Mammoth Site and Custer State Park.