Our first time in Italy. Our daughter, Michelle, ‘Mitch’ had a scheduled event in Rome towards the end of May, 2016, so Grima and I decided it was time we did Italy. We headed over there the last week of April to give us time to see some of the country before winding up in Rome. Our schedule: fly into Venice, rent a car, do Venice, then Verona, then Modena (to visit with a childhood friend of Grima’s from Chile), onto Cinque Terre, down to Tuscany, up to Florence and finally down to Rome. An ambitious plan for the 30 days there. So, our firstRead More →

We were lucky to be in Tampa during the Gasparilla Festival before departing for the Miami Everglades. We were also lucky to have a neighbor in the Tampa East RV park who also worked part time with the Tampa police force. He was able to get us parking close to the convention center so it was a short walk along West Platt Street for good views of the incoming invasion. What a sight – hundreds of watercraft in Seddon Channel escorting an amazing pirate ship filled to the top sails with pirates. It took a good amount of time from our first sight of theRead More →

We scored tickets to the Lion King at the Starz Center for the Performing Arts, a truly beautiful performance. While in the theater a storm blew in and by the time we left the theater the city was washed clean and bathed in an eerie glow of fog and colorful reflections. Went to the top of the William F. Poe Parking Garage to grab some images.       So, more to come. Love to hear what you have to say about our travels.Read More →

On Long Key Gulf Blvd. near the Pinellas Byway sits the Loews Don CeSar Hotel, ‘The Pink Palace’. There’s a fascinating story about the hotel at http://archive.naplesnews.com/community/ghosts-in-the-pink-palace-ep-401425008-332399502.html – you ought to check it out. We happened upon the place while exploring the Long Key one evening. Was a beautiful end of day and marvelous “photographer’s” sunset.                 So, more to come. Love to hear what you have to say about our travels.Read More →

We continue our exploration of the Tampa area, crossing over to Davis Islands, dotted with canals and views of downtown Tampa and sailboat harbors, plus some very impressive homes. We then cross the Hillsborough River to the University of Tampa to take a close look at the H.B. Plant Hall building on campus. It can be seen clearly from across the riverfront downtown Tampa, and is striking for its Moorish architecture. The building was constructed in 1891 as a luxury hotel railroad magnate Henry B. Plant. Today part of the building, a U.S. historical landmark, is used for university classes and part is a museumRead More →

January is a nice time to be in Tampa, for the most part. It can get cold, but mostly the weather is pleasant if not raining. We chose a beautiful, sunny day to go to downtown Tampa and check it out. Were pleasantly surprised to see a modern, well designed river walk pretty much encircling downtown Tampa. We strolled from the Straz Performing Arts Center, past Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, past the Sail Pavilion, all the way to the Tampa Bay History Center. A model for any town with a river (hint, hint, Sacramento).     Went into the downtown area and passed Sacred HeartRead More →

From our RV park it was about an hour’s drive to the gulf coast going across the Tampa Bay on hwy 60 into Clearwater and across Clearwater Memorial Causeway to Clearwater Beach, a distinctively touristy place. Had a bite to eat and then headed down Gulf Blvd. to see what we could see. Not a lot of places where you could just pull over and walk around, so we made it all the way to Indian Rocks Beach before we got out and explored.   Definitely not the large, sandy beaches we had been accustomed to along the Atlantic and back in California. This beachRead More →

We were driving around Tampa one dreary day in early January when, crossing a river I looked to the right and saw forests of cypress trees. Immediately looked where we could park off this busy road. Turned right into the Florida College campus and found parking close to the road and river. There was a walkway at the edge of the road crossing the river on the Bob Woodard Bridge where I could get the best view of the water and the trees. This was my first, up-close look at these wonderful trees with trunks widening as they entered the dark, murky water. It feltRead More →

The first time we drove into downtown Atlanta it was on a Sunday and kind of a gray day. We drove through the old downtown area and it was a little depressing, somewhat deserted and didn’t look very walkable. So not too impressed. A couple days later drove back to see the Inman Park festival. Took awhile to find any place within walking distance to park, but did enjoy seeing some of the older homes and architecture. The festival itself not too impressive. Next time drove into town to see the High Museum of Art and were very impressed (see the next post). Did walkRead More →

It’s not easy to find an RV park close in to any major metropolitan area in the East. Fortunately there is a beautiful park in Stone Mountain State Park just outside of Atlanta. We made that our base of operations while in the Atlanta area. Being spring, we had a bit of rain each day, but not enough to alter any of our plans for seeing the area. And also being spring, there was lush greenery everywhere. Stone Mountain is a large quartz monzonite dome East of Atlanta, famous for the enormous carving of Confederate generals Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. StoneRead More →