What I Did on My Winter Vacation, Part II: Taos and Monarch

From the greater Phoenix area, I headed back the way I came, up that one highway that probably has a number toward Holbrook. It was still pretty: Although it also spat snow somewhere in those mountains, a true harbinger of the two weeks to come. Which is good, since I cannot abide a false harbinger. I spent New Year’s Eve sleeping at an Air B&B place. It was like a casita at…
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Christmas in the Northwest

In, apparently, 1987 there was this song that came out that, apparently, I heard more than once. The song was called “Christmas in the Northwest”. It was, well, you can check it out here: I was going to use the word cloying, but be your own judge. An upside of the song was the implication that somehow Christmas is superior when celebrated in the Pacific Northwest (or, as they call it in…
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Scenes from a Conference in Philly

They’re actually just scenes from Philly, not from the conference. I barely went to the conference. Well: I went to two sessions, which technically is the same number I attended at ICIS. But anyway: Philly is a large city with good restaurants and an urban rail/subway situation that functions reasonably well, aside from the one insane person per car rule, which — I mean, it seems like there might be some upside…
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Oklahoma City Memorial Is (Indeed) Nice, Heavy

Every time I’ve asked locals what there is to see and/or do around here, I have been told I need to go to the Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial (I don’t think it’s called a bombing memorial, but calling it a city memorial makes it sound like OKC no longer exists). This advice has always seemed strange, since, if it truly is nice, then it should truly also be a total downer. And I’m not…
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Eight Really Good Days in Dresden

Last May I went on this trip. My good friend Thomas was getting married to Christine in the vicinity of Stuttgart. I was invited. Then I decided that since I was going to Germany anyway, I might as well spend some time back in the ol’ mission field. I sometimes struggle with vacation. The one previous to Dresden, in which we drove around the South Island of New Zealand hiking to glaciers…
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Conferences in Exotic Locales: Auckland

Conferences in exotic locales are pretty similar to those in normal locales, just a lot more expensive and time-consuming to reach. And less well-attended. Here are some photos of Auckland. I was there for a non-exotic conference last December. Mostly, though, it looked like this: But standing maybe half the time. Usually with a lot more people around. bkd

I Was Also in Bern

This is going back to the Europe thing. After the conference in Milan, I went up to Bern, Switzerland and had a couple of great days with Thomas and  Christine. The day before we went skiing, we went out sight-seeing in Bern. Here is evidence of the aforementioned. It was rainy. Pretty city, though. One hears it’s possible to see the Alps from there. Also, just happened to run into Dave and…
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Milan: City of Conferences and of One Large Cathedral

My impressions of Milan, having spent a week or so there for a conference and stuff: Everything looks like it’s from the 70’s. Sidewalks are narrow and not flat; people walk on them slower than they need to anyway. They have a lot of Italian-brand cars. People seem to be dressed up a lot of the time. They actually speak Italian there. “Grazie” means thank you, “prego” you’re welcome and some forms…
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Down and Out in Pittsburgh and Washington D.C.

Some months ago I received visitors from California. During their visit, some photos were taken. I now offer up those photos to this repository. Long may they remain available. Long! Pgh skyline from the Allegheny shoreline. A tourist-photographer tests the light before taking a picture of a drain affixed to a wall in an otherwise empty room. There’s probably art here, I’m just not sure where its boundaries are. Manassas Battlefield in…
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Saranac Lake Is a Town in New York Where I Took These Photos

First night of the trip I stayed in Saranac Lake in the Adirondacks in New York. Thought the place was cool when I was there in the fall of ’09 on my road trip (e.g., this 48stateroadtrip post), so was stoked to be back up there. Took about nine hours from my house in Pittsburgh to the Best Western in Saranac Lake. One of the best things about that part of the…
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