In the Treaty of Fontainebleau, the Allies exiled Napoleon to Elba, an island of 12,000 inhabitants in the Mediterranean off the Tuscan coast. They gave him sovereignty over the island and allowed him to retain the title of Emperor, while his wife and son took refuge in Austria. He only lived there for ten months before he escaped and raised an army while marching to Paris. Eventually defeated at Waterloo and sent to the island of St, Helena in the Atlantic Ocean where he died.
His house on Elba was small but tucked into a peaceful hill near the enter of the island. The house is in the process of being refurbished but much of the furniture and art was sold off by Napoleon’s sister to pay off family debts.
Our cruise ship, The Azamara Pursuit was a small luxury cruise liner. Because of that we could visit smaller ports that can’t be reached by the large cruise ships.
hen The Pursuit docked in Portoferraio it was the largest ship in the harbor and the only cruise liner there on that day. This made our stay on Elba more enjoyable. Portoferraio is one of the most beautiful natural harbors I have ever seen. The mountainous island has an interesting history dating back to the Etruscans. The town of Portoferraio is beautiful and filled with shops, cafe’s and beautiful beaches.
On our cruise we were excited to visit Elba. It is of course the famous place of exile for Napoleon and we were excited to see Napoleon’s residence. To be honest I was glad we took the tour but Napoleon’s house was the least inspiring part of our trip to Elba.
Our cruise ship docked in Portoferraio which is one of the most beautiful natural harbors I have ever seen. The mountainous island has an interesting history dating back to the Etruscans. The town of Portoferraio is beautiful but as we traveled across the island we saw many other gems. For me the tiny little commune of Porto Azzurro was one of the highlights.
One of the big differences between MLB Spring Training and the actual season is getting to watch the coaches work. During the season you only seem to see the pitching coach when he comes to the mound to stall the game while a reliever warms up in the bullpen. However during the spring training they have much less restraint.
At McKechnie Field in Bradenton Florida there is a small bleacher next to the dugout and all the coaches sit on the bench during the game and between innings they scramble to deliver their wisdom. This is an image of Pittsburgh Pirates Pitching Coach David Jauss talking to a fielder as he left the field of play between innings. Usually pitching coaches only talk to pitchers but in spring training there are a lot of coaches and they work with all the players.
Some of my friends have already given up on the Pittsburgh Pirates for this year and I have to admit it does look grim.As I watched the Buccos lose the other night with a catcher on the mound to finish the final inning; I began to add up the Pirates injuries. Sure we are missing our pitching ace (Gerrit Cole)and although two of our other starters aren’t injured but they are playing like the are. However,nobody is missed more that this guy. Hurry back Francisco, we need you!
This year we have been to 5 Pittsburgh Pirates games and one Steelers game and the two experiences couldn’t be more different. Of course we can afford to have seats on the 100 level for the Bucs and for the Steelers we were in the 500’s near the end zone. At the Bucs game you feel you are out for a night with friends you don’t know. All age groups are represented and yes there are a few drunks and occasionally you may here a swear word.
The NFL game is totally different. People have been drinking and tailgating for hours. There are no children. There are a lot of very large men. Even the language is different. Even the restrooms are different. You feel kind of on edge at all times. Women can’t have purses or fanny packs and are forced to carry their stuff in clear plastic bags they sell outside the gates. Photographers can’t have telephoto lenses and being profane and drunk seems to be a requirement. We are going to see another Steelers game in October and we will be better prepared. My wife has her plastic bag and I will not be carrying a camera and hell yah I will swear damn it!
From last nights game at PNC Park Cubs v Pirates. Note the bartenders at McFadden’s before the game move so fast they actually blur in photos!
I love modern architecture when the sun sets creating unique patterns. I took a few pattern images in Chicago a few years ago along the Chicago River. This the first one I have done in Pittsburgh. Shot from PNC Park during a Bucs game.