boston... part 2


after a crazy hot morning touring the waterfront to do research for the upcoming Nautical Doodles I spent the afternoon in AC while John took a tour of Fenway Park. And here is the famous red chair.

photo 4 IMG_3101

We also went to Harvard. Everything is SO old, so old.


IMG_3027 IMG_3025   IMG_3009

Also went to the Boston Public Library and it did not disappoint. A visual treat. Lots of amazing art, murals, interesting architecture, a gallery with murals by John Singer Sargent.

photo 5.


We did the Freedom Trail, a tourist must. Saw Paul Revere's house, the North Church (one if by land, two if by sea) and this is the Bunker Hill Monument. John walked up the 294 steps. More steps than in the Arc De Triomphe or the Sacre Coeur. Show John a monument he can climb and he is there.

And I had great seafood meals. It was a nice wandering kind of vacation and a nice anniversary trip. And as happy as I was to go, I am just as happy to be home.


paoli, wi...

This is what Paoli, WI has to say about itself... a small rural artisan village of fine galleries and shops on both sides of the bridge. Paoli has become a destination for fine art, fine dining and unique, quality and affordably priced gifts. Enjoy unique art galleries and shops and more than 101 Paoli area attractions, antique malls, local artists, shops and shopping, restaurants and fine dining in the greater Madison and Belleville area. Enjoy a delicious menu at the Creamery Café over looking the Sugar River or a Paoli Pub burger in the Square Park. Here is a nice link with current and historical info about Paoli.

This last weekend was Anniversary Weekend, (much like Birthday Month). We stay in town and play tourist for the weekend, dining out, doing whatever we feel like. We saw a movie (Knight & Day), went to The Fete de Marquette and the Art Fair on the Square and finished the weekend off with a leisurely drive to Paoli. I had been there years ago with a girlfriend. Paoli is a tiny, quaint, unincorporated burg outside of Madison. A small amount of charming, high quality dining and shopping in lovely old buildings - a cheese factory and an old mill just to name two.

My favorite spot was The Cottage Goddess. And extremely well merchandised antique store. Lori the owner does fabulous slipcovering. She was a wealth of information on my upcoming slipcover project (no I have never done it but I am going to try) and well as how to get the filmy whiteness out of a little sherbet dish I bought (soak in vinegar and water). John scored 2 vintage putters for his collection.

Unfortunately we had eaten on the way not knowing what we would find. Next time I am told we should come for brunch. Also got corn and tomatoes from a stand along the way. Next Saturday I think in late afternoon they are having a celebration there... you may want to check it out.

Day 11... Home Sweet Home

O hhhhhh... home and semi unpacked. John unpacks immediately and I pick at it. Sadly we are glued to the tsunami threat. It amazes me that we can watch something like this in real time. And know ahead of time that it is coming.

Thanks to all who armchair traveled with us. And a bigger thanks to all who left comments or emailed. It was fun to have you along!

Artie: Thanks for taking time out of your life to come and stay here. You were a great house sitter!

Day 9... in Muskogee

Left San Antonio early and drove 500 miles and made it to Muskogee. Here are a few more photos from San Antonio... the Alamo...

The Courthouse...
Our lobby and room...
Glad we got this far today as there is a snowstorm coming this way. We should get out and stay ahead of it. Just a couple inches of snow but I'd rather not be driving with people who don't normally drive in snow.

That's it... internet is spotty and I've tried to post this and lost it several times. Hopefully St. Louis tomorrow night.

Day 8... San Antonio

R ain, Sleet, Snow...

Rae: Well that was yesterday. This trip reminds me of the one we took to the Dominican Republic where it was nice the first day and rained the rest of the week.

We walked in wind and rain to the Alamo only to find that we could not go in the mission part because of a ceremony but were ‘welcome’ to come back in 4 hours. We did go in the gift shop and the other area that has the story of the Alamo. John and I were both rudely reprimanded by staff. He set his cup down and I took a photo in the gift shop. I am fine being told not to do something but they could have done it in a nice way.

We tried to go to the Blue Star Contemporary Art Gallery but they are closed to put up a new exhibit. We did check out a couple interesting small folk art galleries.

Vacation is just plain hard work when the weather is bad. So mid afternoon we gave up trying to have fun and went back to the room and had a long nap. I am thankful that we are in a nice hotel. John pointed out that if it was 80 and sunny I’d be loving San Antonio. Yesterday I actually wished I had my big, long, hooded, down coat. (Jane, I can hear you laughing.) But in defense of my packing skills, who thought it would be 4 degrees warmer than home?

But today is looking up. John is now golfing as it is 50. I am at Starbucks on the Riverwalk. After I post I am going to wander a little. Tonight we will come back here for dinner as it is all lit up at night. We had a delightful breakfast at the Guenther House which is part of the Pioneer Flour Mills. (Thanks for the tip Nancy.)

Tomorrow we start the long trip home, we are just going to see how far we can drive each day. Have to do at least 7 hours a day...

JOHN: I know the little ditty about “if the world gives you lemons...” blah blah blah, but we’ve heard so many people praise San Antonio. It seemed a fair bet to come. But, I doubt we will ever be back. That Alamo thing was odd. Oh...I know, I erred carrying in my coffee (unspillable travel mug) and I suppose the staff encounter some jerks in their day, but their rudeness ruined what I hoped to be a highlight of this trip. So, we will stay one more night and call it quits! We do so like our own little slice of home.

Artie: There is everything in the freezer to make the Blue Cheese, Caramelized Onion, Prosciutto Pizza if you feel like it.

Day 7... in San Antonio

photo from The St. Anthony A Wyndham Historic Hotel

W e are in San Antonio and wandered the Riverwalk a little yesterday afternoon after we got in. We are in a hotel right down on the Riverwalk which is fun. For the first time I used to get a room when we got to town. We think we did pretty good. We did the "make an offer" so you name your price and amount of stars and area of the city and you either get a room or not. But you don't get to choose the hotel. This is a pretty 101 year old hotel, our bed is a 4 poster bed that I need a chair to get in to. The room is smallish with a pretty black and white old tile bathroom with a black marble floor. A very walkable location.

Shortly we start the day with breakfast at the Twin Sisters Bakery, then the Alamo and a 3 story Antique Mall. Then probably some lunch and some art. It should be cold and rainy with sleet so we are planning inside things...

John: I have to mention an encounter I had with a young man at a local gas station/Kwik Trip. I went in to buy a candy bar and came away with a Snickers, a Milky Way and a couple of Chik-O-Stiks. (These are like the inside of a Butterfinger). Well, the young man's comment upon seeing the Chik-O-Stiks was something like..."Hey man...that's old school!" and something like..."I wonder if I'll look back when I'm 60 or 70 and say, I only paid $1.25 for a candy bar!" and something like..."what did YOU pay for a candy bar when you were little?" (I wanted to smack him!)

Rae: And I must mention that the linens in this hotel are lovely. Better than mine at home and anyone who knows me well knows that I am kind of neurotic about linens. We ALWAYS travel with our king-sized down pillows and this time I actually talked John into letting me take a down comforter too. I hate the real or imagined dirtiness of bedspreads and don't like how hotel blankets feel. But the linens and pillows are so nice that we aren't even breaking ours out.

Artie: If you want to eat out we have a lot of fun neighborhood restaurants. I think you would like Lazy Janes (great BLT), the Alchemy (great burger) or Lao Laan-Xang (great curry) There are 2 of these restaurants in our neighborhood. I like the one on Atwood better.

Day 5... still in Fort Worth

H ere is a shot of the Catholic church we attended last night. It didn't look like any Catholic church I had ever been in. It was very old school with some Latin prayers and slow, old music. And odd combination of the conservative Mass but this interesting visual which seemed more Greek Orthodox than Catholic. The out door said, "Judas left the Mass early." Cute but not very accurate or maybe I am being too literal. I hear the bathrooms are labeled Adam & Eve and the school bathrooms are labeled Future Priests & Future Nuns.

And I forgot to mention that I don't speak Southern and don't understand it either. On Friday we stopped for lunch at a barbecue place. A woman said something to me and I went blank. It reminded me of being in Germany in the airport and someone would speak to me in German. (I assume I look German.) I would have that 5 second delay when I would hear the words and think I should understand them. Then I would remember I don't speak German. This was the same but I knew I spoke English. The waitress repeated herself the second time to our blank looks. The third time she said slowly Yuh All All Right? OK we still aren't really sure what she said. But we know for sure we didn't understand her. We then sat down and were wondering what state we were in. I would have looked it up in the map program on my iPhone but John choose to ask the waitress. So we were the people who couldn't understand her, didn't know what state we were in (Oklahoma) and had an accent.

I've been using the Map program on my iPhone which is very cool. I put in our start point and end address for the day and can at any point see where we are with the little pulsating dot that moves along the route. It also gives the total miles for the trip but does not count them down. We are using Sarah our GPS for that.

Artie... I noticed that it is snowing in Madison and it appears it may all week. Don't feel any need to shovel, the condo has someone who comes by and does it for us. If the city declares a snow emergency you do have to alternate street park...

Day 3... leaving Tulsa

T ook these photos when we stopped for gas and to stretch in Joplin, MO.

Rae: It was another day of about 6 hours of driving. Today we will reach our first destination - Fort Worth, TX for a weekend visiting with family, John's sister, husband and 4 kids. He is 'fun uncle John' who they delight with daredevil activities. I am the 'gum auntie'. The kids are still young enough to be excited by large quantities of gum. The book is getting a little better but I am finding I cannot knit for 6 hours without my elbow hurting.

John: I am finding the scenery so interesting. No, not the trees, limestone outcroppings and rolling hills of central Missouri. No, what I find interesting is the signage. The billboards seem to be an equal mix of religion (e.g. a full billboard with just JESUS on it), casinos and porn shops. The most curious of the latter was the Adult Boutique. (Right up there with the "Gentlemen's" Club which always makes me laugh!) Adult BOUTIQUE! Classy! Then there was Bunghole wine and spirits store. I kid you not! SERIOUSLY? BUNGHOLE? You couldn't be more creative that that? (And here I am remembering it!) But one of the most creative pieces of signage was a pair of water towers, next to each other, just off the road. One in red in blue. The one on the left guess it yet? Hot. The one on the right labeled Cold. Neat! (Yeah. We should have gotten a photo.) That's all from me. I'll keep my eyes open.

Artie... forgot to tell you that there are burgundy pepper marinade steaks and chicken breasts in the freezer. Both are from Ken's Meat Market. We have 2 places in the neighborhood to buy groceries for some veggies, sides, etc.