Welcome reader to my blog - a mixture of this and that. Now that we are living in a retirement community in downtown Columbia, MD my personal gardening activities are somewhat curtailed. I still enjoy visiting gardens, reading, watching wildlife on my walks, traveling, and occasional food commentary. Please leave a comment if you feel inspired to do so. I read every one of them.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

We Need to Speak Up

No matter who you voted for in 2016, I think you would agree that as Americans we need to know what  if any conflicts of interest our President has. And we need to know that he is willing to remove those conflicts now.


There are two petitions on the We the People website of the White House that you can add your name to.

One petition asks that President Trump immediately release his tax returns.


The second petition asks President Trump to divest himself or put into a blind trust all his business interests.


I've added my name.  It's easy.  Now it's your turn.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Vicksburg, MS

The topography of Vicksburg surprised us after we had driven for so many miles through the flat terrain of the Mississippi Delta region.  Vicksburg sits high on a bluff looking out over the river which is what made it so difficult for Grant to capture the city during the Civil War.


We arrived in Vicksburg on Saturday afternoon.  There had been an ice storm the previous day so some of the steepest streets were closed.  Walking on the sidewalks was tricky too. The Main Street in town looked like something out of a movie lot from old Western days.  Not much traffic for a Saturday.


 It was too early to check in to the Baer House Bed and Breakfast so we went to the Biedenharn Museum on Coca-Cola.






I'll do another post on that fascinating bit of history.

We considered going to the Old Court House but it was locked up tight early.  Probably because of the ice.


We checked into Baer House and like the night before were the only guests.



This Bed and Breakfast was more like an inn than our previous nights' stay at Magnolia Grove.


The house was built in the 1890s for a wealthy merchant.  It went through several owners including a law practice before being restored as a Bed and Breakfast.








Sunday morning dawned bright and cold so before leaving Vicksburg for points south we spent the morning at the Vicksburg National Military Park taking the driving tour using our cell phone for the narration.  We had tried to do this on Saturday but the roads were closed due to the ice.  There were still ice patches but not a problem for us.


Like Gettysburg and other battlefields the place is filled with memorials.








I'll share more in another post.
We came upon this tent structure and were pleased to discover the S.S. Cario Memorial.








It was an iron clad!



More on the Cairo in the future.

A view of the Mississippi from the battlefield.



Our next stop over was Baton Rouge, Louisiana but before I post on that I promise to share more about the places in Vicksburg.













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Saturday, January 28, 2017

Mississippi

In our southern travels we drove through Greenwood, Mississippi on our way to Vicksburg.  This town is in the heart of the Mississippi Delta and has quite a history in the Civil Rights Movement of the 20th Century.



The downtown was deserted.






This delta region is incredibly flat.  We drove west from Greenwood to Greenville hoping to stop at a famous hole in the wall restaurant famous for tamales and with the claim to fame that Elvis and President Clinton ate there.


We found it in a very poor neighborhood and discovered it wasn't open for lunch.  I wasn't comfortable taking any photos.  Here is one from their website.



We did manage to find the Indian mounds outside of town but that park was closed too on a Saturday.




Our trip continued to Vicksburg where we had reserved accommodations at a Bed and Breakfast using the internet.  More on that in the next posting.


Thursday, January 26, 2017

Wakulla Springs - Alligators

If  you have been reading my blog you'll know that Dan and I took a road trip early in January.  Here's the overview.

I have been posting in chronological order about the trip but today I want to skip ahead and share photos of alligators.

Thirty minutes south of Tallahassee is Wakulla Springs State Park.  As the brochure states its "a 6000 acre wildlife sanctuary quietly hidden in Spanish moss-draped Florida woodlands ... The heart of the park is the world famous Wakulla Springs.  Cool water flows from majestic springs to create the Wakulla River, one of the last pristine rivers in Florida."


A boat tour is operated 365 days a year.  Three miles in a 40 minute cruise to see alligators, native birds, turtles and if you're lucky manatee.  We were not lucky in that regard.


We took the boat ride on a lovely morning.  We saw lots of birds.




Our first alligator sighting was this one swimming.


All the others in many sizes were just sunning themselves.










Inside the lodge (more about that in another post) there was this stuffed alligator, Old Joe.  He had been the largest alligator in the springs until he was "murdered".


It's an unsolved murder too.


Wakulla Springs was a wonderful find for us outside of Tallahassee.  Watch for more posts on the day we spent there.


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