Gra Nomad Wanderings

Thursday, June 30, 2011


This sculpture of four American presidents was commenced in 1927 and completed in 1941. It is at Mt Rushmore near Rapid City, South Dakota.
This shot shows the sculpture of CRAZY HORSE, not too far from where the presidents are carved. It was commenced in 1948 and they have completed Crazy Horse's face (see below). Still got a bit to go! Meanwhile we don't have far to go. About 200 miles from Moses Lake to Seattle, tomorrow. Won't bewong now!

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Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Really great to catch up with a fourth cousin of mine, Chuck and his wife Helen in Minnesota. They were at their cabin near Pequot Lake. A lovely part of the world.

Here is their view of the lake.

In South Dakota we viewed the carving of CRAZY HORSE into the rock. It started in 1948, and will be going for many many years to come. This is a model. The actual work can be seen below his left arm. They have only carved his face so far! Yes, it's a long long job for sure.

This bus driver thought he could get through a gap in the rocks. He JUST made it. This was in Custer State Park.

Needle Highway was the name of this area. Well named. The rocks were indeed like needles. Yes, we did visit Mt Rushmore where the 4 presidents have been sculptured in the rock. That work was done between 1927 and 1941. Photos in a day or so (with a bit of luck.) Do you know which presidents are in that sculpture?


Saturday, June 25, 2011


"I go to nature to be soothed and healed." (Especially after doing all the eating we've been doing!)

There are many, many statues in Newton, Iowa. This is just one of them.

We went to Prairie City to have tenderloins and treats. We chose Goldie's Diner. It didn't disappoint.

We even got to meet Goldie. What a character. Thanks for the tucker Goldie.

At last I got a ride on a bike... of sorts. This one was built prior to 1920. Yikes! Pretty short cranks. SOLID tyres! Practically unrideable - but I rode it. Thought of Mulga Bill.
Our visit to LIVING HISTORY FARM was well worth it. This house was owned by the Flynn family. We spent the best part of a day there.

A favourite spot was Cardinal Corner where we used to go for dessert. Ice creams were delicious. And huge! Thanks heaps Bryan & Marcia for a great time in Iowa (as usual).
Off to Minnesota tomorrow. About a 6 - 7 hour drive. Think Fay might have to do some driving. Otherwise, how else will I be able to sleep?

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Thursday, June 23, 2011


Just think - we weren't planning on visiting QC! Gerard told us we had to go. And did we enjoy the place. You guessed it - weather was a bit ordinary, but we survived.

I tried cropping the photos but when I want to put them on the blog, they revert back to their original size and shape. Oh well.

Sure looked and felt a bit European to us.

Loved the greenery and the planter boxes (or whatever they're called.)

No traffic on some of the streets... I think.

The ferry cost us just under three bucks each - that is each way. Total of $12 (for 2 people). Less if you're old like we are. Save 20c on each ferry trip.

Le lapin saute - great place for a feed. Service excellent. Warmer reception than in some other parts of Quebec.

Can you see what brand the bike is? Couldn't resist.

Characters in the sky looked great also. Yeah - we enjoyed our short time in this ancient city.
Now back in the States - in Iowa. Next stop is Minnesota! (Saturday & Sunday.)

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011


We shoulda worn white! Here we are with Gerard and Maria (New Brunswick), getting into lobster and champers! Really good fun. Thanks guys.

Maria was an accomplice - took Fay to fabric and quilt places. Fay bought material while I photographed ideas!
This boardwalk used to be 2 km long. Now only 800 m thanks to storm on 21 Dec last year.
Fay of course had to paddle in the Atlantic Ocean (at least I think that's what it is.) It's the strip of water between PEI and NB.

Here is an old church - not really. It was built in 2004. Gorgeous. Looked like it was centuries old.

Here's Gerard working on the lobster. Did a great job mate. Also a good tour planner.
Stayed at the simple motel - MOTEL SUR MER. Yep, on the water. The St Lawrence seaway. In Canada... approaching Quebec City, so, cost $93 CA, and.....

...this fellow travelling pilgrim (cyclist) and the motel lady (not pictures), didn't speak English! Still a lovely spot and allowed us an easy start the next day into the beautiful old Quebec City (photos tomorrow). The cyclist (Patrick) and Fay and I were the only people at the motel. Lucky we got the seniors' price eh?
We have actually reached Newton, Iowa and will hole up here (like a mob of bushrangers) till things subside a bit. Do washing, catch up with Bryan and Marcia Thayer, eat ice cream etc.

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Saturday, June 18, 2011

PEI - Part 1

Charlottetown is the biggest place on the island. Loved George's pub!

Fay enjoyed checking out Anne of Green Gables area. Pretty neat.

This is inside the house.

We also went to see ANNE & GILBERT - the musical. Great show. PLEASE click that and have a look. It was a fabulous show. The story of Anne of Green Gables... and probably the story of Lucy M Montgomery - author of Anne of Green Gables. Fay read the books when she was in primary school.

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Heaps more photos to come when server feels better!!! This bloke Paul has another 70 just like this one. Ponti, Dodge, Chev, Buick, Caddy etc. Found in New Brunswick.

Saturday, June 11, 2011


Reston, VA to Fairfield CT (or is it CN? Connecticut anyway.) Thanks Rex, Jenny, Ira etc in Reston.

Distance today: 300 miles

Driving time: 6 hrs 53 mins

ave speed 43 mph

consumption 36.2 mpg

fuel put in - 9.27 g @ $3.669/g = $34 (In New Jersey somewhere.)

amount paid in tolls - $31.10 (most expensive bit was crossing George washington Bridge somewhere.... at least it took us 15 mins to cross so we got value for money!!!!)

Highlight: Meeting Margo & Scott at Joppatowne (near Baltimore). They are newly found distant rels! They took us for a spin in their boat... towards Chesapeake Bay. Thanks guys!!!

Lowlight: Traffic and tolls.

BIG DAY TOMORROW. Gotta catch up for lost time. Sleep early tonight.... AFTER HOCKEY GAME FINISHES! (Vancouver Canucks v Boston Bruins.)

Thursday, June 09, 2011


Yes, I'm OK, and so is Rex, our host here in Reston, Virginia. He is quite adept at spotting plates now. There seems to be a whole bunch of "fancy" plates from this state. Here are a few.

Guess this is the shortened form of progress.

Hard to find a lady Ninja these days, but we did eventually.

Do you know about parrotheads? Think they're connected with Jimmy Buffet.

So.... any suggestions? A sporting match? Or this is where the grandkids live? Who knows?

Tea party. Important part of American history.

Good to see the horsey people are in for their fair share. Think you pronounce the plate with a bit of a whinny!

Seeing we're wandering round the nation's capital, I thought I should include this one.
Another day in at Washington DC tomorrow and then we head north towards New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. Yes, a different country even!

Tuesday, June 07, 2011


The nation's capital didn't disappoint! Here is our resident historian finally getting to visit a place where she has been wanting to visit for decades... in fact about half a century! She's made it to Washington DC! (She looks happy!)

This really fascinated me - and I'm happy with the shot. Any ideas? Beautiful.

The U.S. Capitol. (Sorry about the spelling, but that's how they want to spell their capital.)

The Smithsonian Museums - this represents the American Indian one, which we really enjoyed. There are about 12 of them (Smithsonian museums) just in case you're wondering.

The Smithsonian Museums - Air and Space. Spent a heap of time here. Remember what happened on 21 July 1969? A couple of dudes (in white in the picture above) landed... yes, you guessed it.... on the moon!

I think the year was 1932 and it was Emilia Earhart who showed the boys just who was boss of the air. What a lady! What a legend!

Jefferson was one of the impressive, influential presidents that the US has had. Here is the memorial to him, complete with a huge statue of him inside.

Roosevelt was also very impressive and the memorial for him is a suitable, extensive and creative one.

The forgotten war - Korean war - in the fifties. Huge numbers of dead, wounded and captured.
The display was extremely impressive - especially viewed at night. Sad that so many have died in such wars.

The Lincoln memorial. We have read and listened to his speech. Awesome. The memorial is suitably situated on Independance Avenue. The lighting was excellent.
The other one which was of course most impressive was Martin Luther King's speech. They are in the process of putting up a huge memorial to King. We even stood just where he delivered the speech at the Lincoln Memorial.
I wiI will have to check with Fay and of course Rex (our host and guide) to ensure accuracy of what I've written. This visit took us a day and a night and I fear we are not done yet! There's certainly sites we have yet to explore.
Maybe tomorrow.