another front yard
[07/27/2016] We left Erie, Pennsylvania on blue highways (secondary roads that used to be printed in the color blue on the old paper maps of yore) in order to experience the countryside (and avoid expensive toll charges on the New York Turnpike). We had plenty of time to get to our next destination, so time was not relevant.
Nearly every mile of the gently-rolling landscape between Erie, PA, and Buffalo, NY, was covered by orchards of Concord and Niagara grapes. The soil and humidity in this part of the US combine to produce some pretty great wines, we have learned. There were more wineries than we could count. We found one with a parking lot that was big enough for our motorhome and decided to pull in.
The 21Brix Winery is most well-known for its "Ella the Elephant" house-brand of wines. After a tasting, we discovered that the people in this part of New York like their wines REALLY sweet; it is described as "Adult Grape Juice." Too sweet for me!
But this winery also has a sweet cherry orchard and we could not resist a walk though the ripened fruit trees with a bucket under one arm. After our small harvest, Deb said she could now cross picking cherries off her BUCKET list! Ha Ha!
The French term presqu'île, the origin of the park's name, means "peninsula," or literally, "almost an island." This peninsula is an arching, sandy strip of land that protects and forms Presque Isle Bay -- a deep and wide harbor for the city of Erie, Pennsylvania. At the end of the strip is a sizable knob of land they call the “island.” In spite of the name, "Presque," on several occasions there have been storms that eroded portions of the peninsula and caused Presque Isle to be cut off from the mainland ... and actually become an island!.
We kayaked one morning and biked and hiked on both days. Our tours took us to all 3 lighthouses. We even took a walk on “Beach Number Eleven.” The water temperature was an amazing 78 degrees. The air temp was in the mid-80’s. The humidity was actually pretty low on our second day. There was light wind and the sky was clear blue. All was perfect for our visit.
At long last, I can say that the recommendations to visit Presque Isle State Park were good recommendations, and I now offer my recommendation, as well. If you are a birder or kayaker or hiker or runner or biker (or all of these!), it is a level, scenic, beautifully diverse place to explore. And at one end of the peninsula is an ice cream shoppe -- go figure! I was so happy after our visit that if there had been a cannon somewhere in the Park, I would have posed on it!
Once the iron heats to 800 degrees, solder guided by his skillful hands begins to set the pyramid of components onto a PC board and into an ordered and practical assembly. It actually took a few days and a trip to Mendelson's in downtown Dayton to complete the solution. If you are ever in Dayton, a visit to Mendelson's five-story retail warehouse of left-over government electronic curiosities will leave you gasping, "How..., why..., where did it all come from?". It was a nostalgic visit for me -- this store was one of my favorite childhood hangouts before I headed off to college in the latest century. In the end, however, we found what we needed in order to complete a functional burglar alarm for Faith, including a siren that is guaranteed to most-swiftly induce a splitting headache.
Thanks, Doug and Debby, for your hospitality! I think we all had a truly great time during our backyard camp stay in Bellbrook!
The Ark is positioned on a pedestal about 15 feet high. In Disney-like fashion, lines of visitors follow a queue that weaves beneath and exposes some of the would- be underwater carpentry.
It is not until you are inside, however, that you are fully impressed with how much wood and work it took to build. The timbers that frame the Ark are 24" to 30" in diameter. They form the 600+ foot keel and a structural row of giant "V"s down the inside center of the Ark. These are the largest dado and rabbet joints I have seen!
The shape of the Ark required much of the wood to be sawed and/or bent in curves - no two pieces alike. There is very little square-cut lumber in the hull of the Ark. And all of the wood was cut by hand. Wow!
The Ark has four decks (and no top deck). Each deck has rows and rows of very small to very large cages for the convention of very small to very large animals. There is a series of ramps for moving food, water, and animals between each level.
There is an amazing series of clay vessels and wooden channels for air and water to be moved throughout the Ark. There was even separate ducting and chambers for a basic septic system. There were gravity-fed feeding mechanisms on all of the smaller cages. There was even a system to keep the penguins and polar bears from becoming too uncomfortable.
These are things we had not before considered. We wondered how long it would have taken to load all of the stores that they had on-board, and how long it would take to feed all of the animals each day, and how anxious the animals would have been to be released after their "forty days and nights" on a tumultuous sea.
The Creation Museum, but do highly recommend it.
It also includes a small section on the Ark.
a very long, colorado,
fourth of july weekend!
on fathers day
Shortly after 8:00PM, Deb and I were in the Jeep zooming down Interstate 75 heading for a Dayton area exit that would give us speedy access to the westbound lanes of I70. That is the only turn that we needed to navigate -- once on I70 it would lead us all of the way from Ohio to Denver. Soon the sun had set and the roads were clear -- we were compelled to keep on driving through the cool of the night.
We were tired, but in a road-trance-sort-of-way we kept on. Deb and I tag-teamed the drive, each taking a couple hundred miles at a time. In a little over 17 hours, 1,215 miles, and 261 music tracks from the iPad, we "landed" safely at Ken's mom's house in Littleton, Colorado. In the interest of full disclosure, we did pull over and sleep for two hours in the Topeka area.
We don't remember how we did it, but the Mountain Dew bottles were all empty when we got there. WooHoo!