My Virtual Vacation Day 4—Paris

We had hoped in retirement to travel the world. So far we have done a pretty good job with trips to Mexico, Hawaii, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain and The Czech Republic. However the pandemic has stopped all of that for a while. So while waiting for Africa, Alaska and Scandinavia, our current travel is going to have to be virtual. Today’s stop is Paris in the summertime. Of course the trip would not be complete without some real onion soup and a real french terrine.

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Bienvenue a Paris

Paris from the Pompidou Centre

L’Université Paris-Sorbonne

A delicious terrine in a Parisian Cafe

Real Onion Soup

My Virtual Vacation Day 1—Pittsburgh

We had hoped in retirement to travel the world. So far we have done a pretty good job with trips to Mexico, Hawaii, Holland, Belgium, Switzerland, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain and The Czech Republic. However the pandemic has stopped all of that for a while. So while waving for Africa, Alaska and Scandinavia our current travel is going to have to be virtual. Like all of our recent trips they begin and end in our home town of Pittsburgh.

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Pittsburgh Party Deck

Pittsburgh Sunset

Pittsburgh’s Strip District Mural

Pittsburgh Autumn

Mon View

Social Distancing

If you follow this blog you know that it mainly focuses on photography and travel. However, the pandemic of Covid 19 is hard to ignore and I would not be much of a blogger if I did. . I know its hard to think about your life if you are stressed and anxious and when experts tell you to social distance yourself it doesn’t mean you have to hide. Some of us will have to isolate and quarantine ourselves but others can have outdoor activities.

Go for a walk or if you can surf pick up your board and head to the beach. If you can’t surf, don’t do it, the last thing you want to do is injure yourself and wind up in the emergency room. If you are a photographer put away your wide angle lens and get out your telephoto lens. Photograph the spring flowers. Be safe, live your life at a distance for a while and don’t panic. And don’t forget to carry your towel

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Social Distancing

Pittsburgh Party Deck

The empty party deck of the Gateway Party Liner provides a colorful frame for a view of Pittsburgh from the SouthSide across the Monongahela River.

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Pittsburgh Party Deck

Delicate Arch Revisited

I recently came across this image and edited it NIK editing tools and Adobe Photoshop.

If you have never been to Arches National Park, you should think about making the trip. The spectacular views are primarily sandstone and eroding away. The Park Service thought about covering some of the formations with a clear polyethylene chemical but abandoned the idea as environmentally unsafe.

Although there are signs everywhere telling people to not climb on the rocks and stay on the paths, there are a lot of idiots that ignore this and are helping the natural process of erosion with the death of a million touches. Park Rangers fear that Delicate Arch may not last too much longer and although there are many other spectacular views in the park, the collapse of Delicate Arch will be a sad event so see it soon.

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Delicate Arch Revisited

Peggy’s Cove Nova Scotia 1981

In 1981 we traveled to Nova Scotia. Those were the days of film photography and although I did some monochrome, mostly I shot 35mm color transparency film. I don’t have too many of the slides left. I either lost or had two trays of slides stolen some time in the 1980’s. I have shared some of the survivors; High Tide in Bay Of Fundy and Peggy’s Cove. This is one of the monochrome images from that trip.

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Peggy’s Cove NS

Window with A View

Most of the time when you travel and stay in hotels near the highway you get your choice of view. You can view the front parking lot or rear parking lot. As a Marriott Gold Elite member I almost always get upgraded. This time it was with it.

This is the view from the Aloft in Lexington Massachusetts. We saw a variety of animals and birds during pour stay and still had the convenience of being close to the highway.

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Hotel View

Hamming it Up

You can buy excellent prosciutto aka Parma Ham in the USA. Every good Italian food store and deli will offer a variety. They are always in delicatessen cases. Most USA Italian restaurants offer a variety of dishes offering this delicacy.

The restaurants that we visited in Italy didn’t hide it away. It was almost presented like a lead actor in a play. If a dish require Parma Ham a waiter or chef would go to the center of the room where this beauty was displayed and with a very sharp knife cut what they needed. Food and entertainment.

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Parma Ham

Color Guard

I published the full color version of this picture earlier this week in Changing of The Guard. I thought the guard got lost in the image so I did a little bit of editing to make him stand out.

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Color Guard

Changing of The Guard

I am not a big fan of the military and soliders. I appreciate the sacrifices they make but I am not very knowledgable or interested in military things. That said I love the pomp and circumstance of the changing of the guard. I have seen it at the Tomb of The Unknown Solider and more recently at Prague Castle.

Prague Castle is the current seat of government for the Czech Republic and has been the seat of emperors and kings dating back to 9th century. The ceremony is therefore guarded by active soliders in addition to the ceremonial guard.

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The Changing of The Guard

The Changing of The Guard

The Changing of The Guard