Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Summer Travel Plans

In less than three weeks, my mother and I embark on a voyage of great proportions! We are to visit the land of New England!

We're leaving on the evening of August 5th and driving until we're tired, basically. On August 6th, we'll spend the morning in Bristol CT at the New England Carousel Museum to satisfy my obsession, then we'll drive to Newport RI. There's A LOT to see in Newport so we'll be there the afternoon of the 6th and all day on August 7th. On our list to see: Touro Synagogue (oldest surviving synagogue in the United States), Redwood Library (America’s oldest lending library housed in its original building), Common Burial Ground and Island Cemetery, Great Friends Meeting House (oldest house of worship in Rhode Island), White Horse Tavern (oldest still operating tavern in the United States) and two of the famous Newport mansions: Marble House and The Breakers, both Vanderbilt mansions. We're going to take a walking tour of the cemetery, which should be awesome. It has great examples of Colonial stone carving and Oliver Hazard Perry is buried there.

Early on August 8th, we're going to leave the Newport area for Plymouth. Be still my genealogy and history loving heart.  The morning and at least part of the afternoon will be spent seeing the sites: Pilgrim Hall Museum, Plymouth Rock (of course), Sparrow House (Plymouth's oldest structure), Burial Hill and Coles Hill Burial Ground where my ancestors are buried, First Parish Church (the oldest church congregation in the United States in continuous operation) and the Mayflower Society Museum and Library. Then we'll drive to Salem. We will definitely stop by the Salem Witch Trials Memorial and I would like to see the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, but we may get there too late. 

On the 9th, we're going to start our day with fabric shopping in Portsmouth NH before heading across the border into Maine.  We're going to Kennebunkport and visiting the Seashore Trolley Museum (to satisfy my other obsession - trains!). Then its off to Concord, NH. If we have time, we'll see the state house (oldest state house where the legislature still uses their original chambers), if not we'll visit the morning of August 10th before heading to Waterbury VT to tour the Ben and Jerry's Factory. After the ice cream overload, we're headed to Albany, NY so I can see one of my best friends Nicole aka Pepper. 

August 11th, we drive home.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Spring Travel Plans

I have a bunch of plans over the next three weeks:

Tomorrow, at noon, I leave for Pittsburgh to see the All American Rejects in concert. I'll be back in Columbus Thursday afternoon.

Friday, after work, I drive to Cincinnati for the Steampunk Empire Symposium (check out the sewing preparations over on my sewing blog - I'll be there until Sunday evening, then it's back to Columbus again.

Next Thursday, May 3, my mother and I fly to Florida for a visit. My grandmother, uncle and aunt moved down there in January, and my great uncle and his wife and daughter already live there, so I'll get to see a bunch of family. Also, the All American Rejects are playing Sunfest, about 20 minutes from my grandmother's house. Yes, I will be going.

And the weekend after that, on May 11, I drive to Cincinnati again after work Friday to meet up with my best friend Regie, who's coming from Chicago. We're going to see the All American Rejects in Louisville on Saturday and in Cincinnati on Sunday. Then it's back to Columbus Monday morning.

Hopefully, I'll have some travel pictures to share after this adventure!

Friday, January 6, 2012


Over all, and compared to Quebec City, my visit to Montreal was a disappointment. I was expecting to feel like I was in Europe (like I did in Quebec City) and instead I felt like I was in New York City with a lot of French tourists. But that's just my opinion.

There were a few note-worthy sites.

The first is the Notre-Dame Basilica or Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal, in Old Montreal. It is a beautiful example of Gothic Revival and has a world famous altarpiece. The construction took several decades, beginning in 1824 and ending with the completion of the pipe organ in 1891.

The interior of the church is a done in blues, azures, reds, purples, silver, and gold and is filled with hundreds of intricate wooden carvings and several religious statues. Unusually, the stained glass windows depict Montreal's religious history instead of biblical scenes.

The exterior of the basilica from the Place d'Armes.

The world famous altarpiece.

Another highlight of our visit was the Pointe-a-Calliere, an archeological museum that explores Montreal's past.

The name comes from the fact that Chevalier Louis Hector de Callière, the third governor of Montréal, had a home built on the spot in 1688. The museum is built upon evidence of more than 1,000 years of human activity and houses remarkable architectural remains. It has six sections: the Éperon, a modern building that has won many architectural awards (seen in the photo below); the archaeological crypt on the lower level; the renovated Ancienne-Douane building (Montréal’s first Custom House), the Youville Pumping Station, the Archaeological Field School and the Mariners House.

The tower of the Éperon overlooks the Port of Montreal and has fantastic views of the city. The crypt actually links the Éperon and the Ancienne-Douane underground, beneath the Place Royale. The Youville Pumping Station, Montréal’s first electrically operated waste water pumping station, was built in 1915 and is now an interpretation centre. It contains preserved motors, pumps, valves and electrical equipment are used to explain the role, components and operation of the station.

The Éperon

There is relatively little of Old Montreal left (at least that I saw), which I think was a major source of my disappointment.

Old Montreal. They were shooting a movie nearby, but I never found out what movie.

Another highlight was riding the Montreal Metro, because as we all know, I LOVE trains.