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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Penetanguishene - if you can spell it, you can stay!

Last year we visited the next harbor, Midland and while we were there some friendly folks from AGLCA (American Great Loop Cruising Assoc.) scheduled a Rendezvous. The organizers drove us to Penetanguishene, fed us dinner at the local museum and showed us on our charts where to go -and more importantly where NOT to go!

This year we decided to visit Penetanguishene and we thoroughly enjoyed the city. (That's what we will call Penetanguishene from here on in!) We biked up the hills (we sure need to get in shape for the upcoming bike trip in Vermont and Montreal!) and the boys were with us. Buddy needs the exercise and Boo needs love and attention by being carried in the baby carrier.

The wind was blowing like crazy so we stayed an extra day and actually read books and enjoyed ourselves. Bay Moorings is a nice marina located a bit outside of the city, but the kind folks drove us to the grocery store and West Marine. They also told us how the Keewatin was traveling to Port McNichol and would arrive last Saturday. They told us on Sunday and they all had gone with their boats to watch her come in. There were 1000 boats watching her. Welcome home to the Keewatin.  Wish we could have seen her on her trip home.

The staff at Bay Moorings was so friendly! They drove us to West Marine in Midland and to the grocery store. Jim found something to read while we await pickup.

The boys are best friends. They are brothers with different mothers.

Bay Moorings Marina

Monday, June 25, 2012

Meaford, ON, What a Pleasure are you!

Beautiful Marina at Meaford, ON.

The wind blew like stink (my sailing buddies know what that is!) when we cruised to Meaford and when we arrived in the harbor, the harbormaster placed us in a parallel parking spot, barely big enough for Crawdad. Not appreciated, but after our arrival, everything improved!

Charming town with architecture from the turn of the century. Lots of shops, grocery store, LCBO and a Farmers Market! We stayed a second day so we could attend the Farmers Market. Quite early in the year for many vegetables, but still usually an interesting local event!

Another one of those bike riding shots, where Jim rides ahead, I stop and he can't figure out why he is riding by himself.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

China, Tibet & Hong Kong - a Different Life

Jim and I traveled to China a few weeks ago.  We enjoy the cultures and people we meet along the way. Most people we meet on our travels have seen much more of the world than we.

This trip was with Overseas Adventure Travel. We have traveled with them a number of times in the past. Groups are limited to 15 people on most adventures. A good size group that allowed each of us to enjoy each other's differing personalities. (Not sure where we fit in!)

My sister, Marcia and her husband Andy took this 22 day trip a year and a half ago. They enjoyed themselves immensely.  Andy was born in China and lived in various parts of China as his parents, as Christian missionaries flew the Communists. After fleeing China they remained in Taiwan for many years and finished their ministry.  We really wanted to see where Andy and his family lived.

Andy had made a notebook with pictures, reviewing his parents meeting as individual missionaries.  We loved the pictures of his family as they moved from place to place. This was our impetus to visit China.

Hope you have lots of time. Lots of pictures to follow.
Like our matching jackets?  Travel a bunch of times for lots of money and get free jackets!

The Great Wall on a not very clear day.

The Birds Nest. Every day can't be a sunny day!

Mao's tomb with a long line, waiting to see his fully pickled body in Tiananmen Square.

Just happened upon a Chinese wedding. Red is big in China!

The train to Chengdu was an experience.

Save the Giant Panda, please!

Save the Red Panda too! How cute is she!

Some times we just do silly stuff. Chinese Opera at its best.

Home visits aren't always that stimulating, though usually interesting.

Potala Palace in Tibet. Home of the Dalai Lama. He hasn't lived there since 1959, since the Communists took over Tibet.

The flight to Tibet was incredible.

Nice to have a pharmacist in the house. Prescription needed? Heck no!

Life on the Yangtze River.

Our little cruise ship. Be careful loading....

The Gorges are incredibly beautiful.

For my sailing friends....

Construction worker smiled for me.

Love those tourists! Welcome!

The lock on the Three Gorges Dam is larger than anything we have seen and we have "done" a lot of locks. Can't see much as it is "foggy".  Perhaps they should reclassify fog as smog.

Camera ready!

Terracotta warriors discovered in 1974 by a farmer digging a well. We met the farmer at the Museum. The warriors are a form of funerary art buried in 210BC.  It is estimated there are 8000 soldiers, generals, chariots and horses. We have never seen anything like it. So massive.

This is a general as can be distinguished by his hair and design on his clothing.

Jim wanted him to go home with us, but I said no.

The Chinese have spent an incredible amount of money and time restoring the warriors. Though Chinese history is readily available, there is no information on these pits. It is readily believed that the skilled artists and workmen (probably thousands) were killed to eliminate  the information escaping that might cause the tomb to be raided.  The tomb was raided within 100 years.

In the village walking, we came upon a funeral. The family invited us into their home to share the food they were preparing. The gentleman who died was elderly and the funeral was considered a celebration of a good and happy life.

Hong Kong at night. Incredible sight.

Riding the double decker bus.

Riding the ferry in Hong Kong Harbor out to Cheng Chau Island where Andy lived as a child.

 Jim investigating the local cemetery overlooking the harbor.

So many pictures....where do we begin. Thank you Marcia and Andy!

Owen Sound, ON - Big City Feeling

The Saginaw was in port. Made us feel at home!
The Owen Sound Marina went bankrupt a few years ago and was recently purchased by 5 new partners in auction.  They are working hard to make it a better place. We wish them well.

We try to visit interesting museums. This is a marine transportation museum. I asked the usual subject to take a photograph of the photographer where she is happiest - at the wheel!

Billy Bishop was born in this house and grew up in Owen Sound. He was the WWI flying ace from Canada, officially credited with 72 victories. We learn a lot of history visiting towns and villages along the way.

Wiarton, ON - More Canadian Quaintness

Cruising has been gorgeous for most of the trip so far. As you can see I am safe from those pesky flies.

The fog rolled in at an incredible pace. Glad to have radar for those times of surprise.

There are few cottages.  Some are palatial and others are small summer cottages from generations ago.