Saturday, September 23, 2006

Winfield Trip (Quick Overview)

We're back - we had a great time. Bruce had to back in the office by Wednesday.
Here's the rough outline:
Friday 8th - Bruce picked me up at about 7 pm and we hit the road. Drove through CT, NY and NJ. Slept in a truckstop in New Smythe, PA.
Saturday - Warm and muggy, head for Gettysburg. Arrived mid morning. Went to the cemetery and Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Check out the shops.
2PM - leave and head for Metawan, W.VA. Drove through West VA all day. Would like to see more. Stopped in Charleston for supper. Continued on.
Arrived in Metawan and it was dark. Tired and looking for someplace to sleep, couldn't find anything we trusted, so we slept in the parking lot of a Dollar Store. Very foggy, warm and muggy. I couldn't sleep it was so oppressive. Woke up the next day and guess where we were - just a few feet from the Hatfield/McCoy site. Very small town, everything was closed as it was Sunday morning. Bought a Hatfield/McCoy coaster and got pictures of the intersection of Hatfield Drive and McCoy Drive. Got pictures of a local football hero named Paul McCoy #22.
Crossed over into Kentucky - pretty but not 'blue' grass. Homes are probably expensive even thoough you are in the middle of Appalachia. Drive through Kentucky most of the day. Arrive in Nashville in the evening.
Spent two nights in Nashville at a Country Inn. Nice, but about 8 miles from downtown. We checked out Nashville, big modern city like Vegas, not what you'd expect. Next day we go shopping in the Music District (about 2 blocks wide and 4 blocks long). Quite warm. Had ice cream. After supper, we meet up with Dave Parks, a friend of Bruces (and now mine) who is a school teacher and bus driver who is trying to crack into the music biz in Nashville. He takes us bar-hopping for the music. Loaded with tourists. Get home late.
Tuesday morning up early, head for Kansas. We were slated to visit Adams, TN for the Bell Witch site, but the place is privately owned and we decided not to take the time out in cas there were not having tours that day, so we ended up in Memphis around noon. Encountered rain heading towards Nashville but we drove through it. Stopped in Memphis, had lunch and checked out the shops. Quite hot. Stay out of the sun.
After Memphis, cross the Mississippi, into Arkansas. Another planned stop, Murfeesboro Diamond Mine is cancelled due to time. Drive through Arkasas, would like to see more of that state. Pretty state with a bad rap. Had pizza in Fort Smith. Pizza in the midwest sucks. Drive all day in Arkasas, hit Oklahoma at night. Pick up free maps and refrigerator magnets along the route. Forgot to get one in Maryland before entering West Virginia.
Oklahoma at night, Gas $2.06. Cheap there. $2.40 in Illinois and $2.87 in New York, go figure. I was asleep when we entered Kansas at 1 am or so. Gets cool at night, need jacket. Set up tent. Already difficult to find parking and the festival doesn't even officially start till Thirsday. Beat Colorado friends.
Bruce always has called me Bones (from Star Trek). Our campsite is known as the 'mASSholes', (he had a state seal on the side of the tent). We are next to the River Rats (Colorado and Oklahoma) and the Dirt Dawgs (from Kansas) nearby. Bruce tells them I am coming. Connie of the Dirt Dawgs makes me an embrodered flag that says 'The Dirt Dawgs Welcome Bones' and the lettering is made out of bones. Great people. Make a lot of new friends.
Thurs to Sunday the 17th. Bluegrass festival - packed with campers and tents and locals. Each day is quite hot, in fact by Saturday it will be 95 with a heat index of 97 and I felt like I was in Vegas again. Too hot on Saturday, so Bruce and I take a side trip to Wichita. We should have gone back to Oklahoma since we didn't see any of it. Went to a yard sale and for pizza. Again pizza sucks. Prairie and cornfields. Nice people. Land of Oz.
Satuday night get tornado watch as cold front comes through. Pours like hell and lightning. We manage to stay dry as the tent is made of canvass. But we were ready for anything. Music stops as storm approaches. People jam all night.
Sunday leave at about noon and head for Niagara Falls. I-70 most of the way. We hit Missouri and Illinois, sleep in Indiana.
We look for a mailbox and end up in Richmond, IN to check it out and buy Rozz a present at a jewelry store. Looks like Fall River useed to. Granite buildings and nice architecture. Buy souvenirs. Drive through Indiana, Ohio, PA and New York and get into Niagara at about 10. We stop in two casinos, one in OK, where I lost $40 and the other at Niagara where I got it back. Visit a few Hard Rock Cafes. Sleep in Niagara. Go to Falls and night and take Maid of the Mist cruise in the morning. Leave for home Tuesday afternoon. Rain from Indiana (sleeping there was very muggy and it poured) into Ohio and almost followed us to the Falls.
Tuesday no rain in the morning, follows us home along the Mass Pike. Stop for Papa Ginos. Good pizza. Arrive in Braintree at 8:30.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Mitch Coleman, Where Are You?

Will Mitch Coleman, apparently the former owner of East Coast Pizza in Village Center Circle in Las Vegas (Summerlin) send me an email at

Don't what to lose track with you.

Your friend from Lake Tahoe and the East Coast.

Or just leave a comment. My number hasn't changed since I gave it to you, so use it.


Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Terror Rhetoric vs Real Terror

What's the deal with overhyping the terror card with using words such as 'Nazi', 'Hitler' and 'Stalin?'. Has the Bush administration gotten so spooked over the latest polls that they have resorted to hyper-dramatization?

Its funny how this administration talks about 'Islamofascism' and its threat to democracy. This is a regime that came to power thwarting the will of the people by having a GOP controlled Supreme Court cancel a legal recount in 2000; calls any and all 'media' that criticizes it 'aiding the enemy; calls anyone who challenges the neo-con vision as 'appeasers' and more than half of the American electorate as 'not getting it'.

While they argue about being the 'only ones' who can protect us from terror and save democracy and 'freedom' this is a regime that illegally wiretaps citizen's phones, has a bill signing 'disclaimer' that it won't abide by any law that Congress passes if Fuhrer Bush thinks he knows a better way to keep us safe even if it violates the law. Meanwhile, Osama Bin Laden is back on the President's agenda again, since back in 2002, he said he 'didn't think much' of the mass murderer. So much so, in fact, the CIA has disbanded the group that was dedicated to capturing him.

And meanwhile, 4000 illegal aliens will invade this country today alone. While most of them are honest people just looking for a better way of life, how many of these are Al Queda sympathizers?

We were led to believe, and they'd like you to continue to believe, that the war in Iraq was not 'Operation Avenge Daddy', but a main leg of the war on terror. The idea was to fight them over there rather than here would prevent terror at home. Tell that to the Spanish and British troops who fought along side the Americans and look at the subway bombings in London and Madrid. Has worldwide terror abated as a result? There have been bombings in India, Indonesia (twice), Egypt, Spain and Britain. Time for a new approach, since all Iraq has become is a testing ground and recruitment center for more terrorists.

Meanwhile, there has been a different kind of horror. Yesterday at a bed and breakfast in a ski-resort area in Newrie, Maine, the chef at the establishment killed the owner, her mother, killed a male guest then took his body out back and hacked it to pieces. When two female guests arrived to check on things, he killed them, too. He also killed 3 dogs on the property.

At his arraingment, the guy showed no remorese whatsoever. He even smirked.

Maine is one of those places that people go to to escape the horrors of the real world and I thoroughly enjoyed my sojourn there three weeks ago. Neighbors said the cook was 'quiet' and they would never have suspected him of being capable of such a crime.

No THATS terror.

Vistors for August: AZ, CA, CO, CT, MA, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, TX, VA and VT.
International: Czech Republic, France, India, Poland, UK

I am getting ready for the trip through America's Heartland as Bruce and I travel to Winfield Kansas for the Winfield Bluegrass Festival with stops aat Gettysburg, PA; Metawan, West Virginia; Pikeville, Kentucky; Adams, TN; Nashville and Murfeesboro, Arkansas. Hopefully, I'll have pictures and stories soon after I return and play 'catchup'.