Reflection cruise

February 6, 2016 Leave a comment

The Reflection is a relatively new ship,  so we thought we would check it out on a one week Caribbean cruise.  It has become one of our favorite ships .  All the shipboard facilities were nice, we’ll laid out and tastefully decorated. Plus, there was some truly great at work on display.   And of course the food was excellent,  and we had a beverage package so we didn’t go thirsty either.

Or cruise took us to Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Jamaica, and an unexpected stop in Nassau.   The last stop was added to replace our planned stopover in Coco Cay, as there was a major storm in that area.   No one seemed to mind.

It was fun to travel with our friends (Les and Ida Cook), we made sure to get enough to eat,  and got some nice photo opportunities.  Below are a few, and many more in out Flickr album.

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Inside the dining room

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Shopping center in Jamqica

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Colorful Jamaica!

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Jamaica flower

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Not sure about some of the ships in the harbor

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A view of where we've been

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Guess we made it to the Caymans

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It does get hot on the islands. ...

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Romola, Les and Ida

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Island colors

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More colors

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Making sure we stay off the rail

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Romola and Ida between the ships

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A park in Cozumel

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Where we had great Indonesian food (Chi)

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Our ship

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Early morning on board

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Swimming pool at dawn

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Following the NCL Escape out of Miami

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Atlantis hotel

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Back to Miami

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At the Atlantis hotel

A quick Caribbean cruise

December 25, 2015 Leave a comment

We do a lot of cruising,  but never on Norwegian.  So when we saw a very low price on a cruise from Houston,  we decided to give “freestyle cruising” a try.   Especially since they offered upgraded dining.

The ship was the Jade, and we had an inside cabin.  It was small, but for our purpose just fine.   The room attendant was attentive and did a nice job.   The wood finish looked quite rich and attractive.  Our only complaint was location, right above one of the night clubs, made for noisy evenings.

The food was very good, especially the upgraded dining.  No problems there,  although the open dining can get quite busy.  The one problem we did have was that the Asian restaurant used MSG, which Romola is allergic to.   So we skipped that restaurant.

Overall though,  we enjoyed the ship and her crew.

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The NFL Jade

 

 

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Categories: Traveling Tags: , ,

Will Rogers, Cherokee Nation

October 22, 2015 Leave a comment

Our next stop with the Traveling Supremes was Wagoner, OK.  From here, we visited the Will Rogers Museum and the Cherokee Nations Heritage site.

William Penn Adair “Will” Rogers (1879 – 1935) was an American cowboy, vaudeville performer, humorist, newspaper columnist, social commentator and stage and motion picture actor. He became one of the most famous American media stars during the 1920s and 1930s.

Known as “Oklahoma’s Favorite Son”,[1] Rogers was born to a prominent Cherokee Nation in Indian Territory (now part of Oklahoma). He traveled around the world three times, made over 70 movies, wrote more than 4,000 newspaper columns, and became a world-famous figure. By the mid-1930s, he was the leading political wit of his time, and was the top-paid Hollywood star. Rogers died in 1935 with aviator Wiley Post when their small airplane crashed in northern Alaska.

The Cherokee Heritage Center is a non-profit society and museum that preserves the historical and cultural artifacts, language, and traditional crafts of the Cherokee Indian.  It consists of a museum that show the remarkable arts and crafts of Cherokee Nation, and gives a moving account of the “Trail of Tears”.

The Cherokee Nation removal in 1838 (the last forced removal east of the Mississippi) was brought on by the discovery of gold in Georgia, in 1829. The Cherokee were divided into thirteen groups, who were forcibly marched to the Indian Territory (now Oklahoma).   Approximately 5,000 of the 16,500 relocated Cherokee perished along the way.

One of the more famous Cherokees was Andy Hartley Payne, the winner of the Trans American Footrace staged in 1928. He ran the 3,423.5 mile from New York to Los Angeles  in 23 days averaging 6 miles per hour over an 84 day staged run.

We were also given an excellent tour of the restored village, and the way of Cherokee life.  A very educational and interesting display.

Statue of Will Rogers

Statue of Will Rogers

One of the many painings of Will

One of the many paintings of Will. He was a laid back type of guy.

One of the wings of the Museum

One of the wings of the Museum

A statue of Andrew Payne, a participant in the great Transcontinental Footrace (1928)

A statue of Andrew Payne, a participant in the great Transcontinental Footrace (1928)

Ceremonial head dress

Ceremonial head dress

Our  guide, explaining life in an Cherokee house

Our guide, explaining life in an Cherokee house

Our guide making flint arrow heads

Our guide making flint arrow heads

Inside the Council House, looking up

Inside the Council House, looking up to gods in the sky

Texas Oil Museum, Tyler Rose Parade

October 21, 2015 Leave a comment

If you don’t like museums, you definitely should visit the East Texas Oil Museum in Kilgore, TX.  There isn’t much to read, instead you walk into history with some excellent exhibits and animated displays… including an elevator “ride” some 5,000 feet into the ground to view oil deposits on site.

The discovery of oil in the 1930’s had a major impact on this area in particular, and on the country in general.  Our Traveling Supremes RV group had a rally in the area, and this certainly was a highlight.   Very much recommended.

The next day we viewed the Tyler Rose Festival Parade.  Tyler distributes about 75% of the roses in the United States, and has a major economic impact on the area.  There were many marching bands, beautiful girls, automobiles, beautiful girls, colorful roses, beautiful girls… well, you get the idea.  After the parade we visited the Tyler Rose Gardens and viewed the very elaborate center piece exhibits for the festivities.

Lik walking in the 1930's Kilgore

Lik walking in the 1930’s Kilgore

Various drill bits on display

Various drill bits on display

Inside a work shop with animated "worker"

Inside a work shop with animated “worker”

Inside a General Store

Inside a General Store

The local Rangerettes had a huge influence on cheerleaders everywhere

The local Rangerettes had a huge influence on cheerleaders everywhere

Prominent display of the Flag

Prominent display of the Flag

Very colorful dresses

Very colorful dresses

More colorful displays

More royalty on display

Colorful floats, too

Colorful floats, too

Hail he Queen!

Hail he Queen!

A very elaborate centerpiece for the festivities

A very elaborate centerpiece for the festivities

An overview of the Tyler Rose Garden

An overview of the Tyler Rose Garden

A Tyler rose

A Tyler rose

Back in Texas

October 13, 2015 Leave a comment

The vacation is over, and we’re back in our motor home.  In fact we are back in Lewisville for a few days.  When we left, most of the park was flooded due to heavy rains.  Now it is back to normal.   But…… what’s with the weather?  It’s been the mid 90’s all week….

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Home sweet home

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The water is way down

Categories: Traveling

Athens – the last day

October 12, 2015 Leave a comment

All good things must come to an end, even a terrific trip like the one we have been on.  So on our last day we managed to get in some final sights.

We walked to Athens First Cemetery, the most important cemetery in Athens.  It is not the largest, but most prestigious.  The cemetery is organized by family, with all family members buried in one area or crypt.  Some of these were exceptionally elaborate.  If you can’t take it with you, make a monument…

Our friend George and his lovely wife Angela made our last day most pleasant.  First, he drove us near the top of Mount Lycabettus, the highest point in Athens at 300 meters (908 feet) above sea level.  A great view from way up there made the last climb up worthwhile!

For a send of, George treated us to a fantastic lunch at a very local sea food restaurant near the seaside city of Pireas.  The fish was fresh caught and superbly cooked.  Great sendoff, George!

Now only have the trip back to contend with and then see if we can get life back to normal.

Wonder if this was a sailor making his last voyage

Wonder if this was a sailor making his last voyage

A memorial to all the mothers killed during World War 2

A memorial to all the mothers killed during World War 2

Elaborate carvings

Elaborate carvings

Some self importance at work here?

Some self importance at work here?

Some reminded me of the Parthenon

Some reminded me of the Parthenon

The last walk was well uphill

The last walk was well uphill

The view made the climb worth it

The view made the climb worth it

If you look real close you can find the Acropolis

If you look real close you can find the Acropolis

Yes, the fish is fresh!

Yes, the fish is fresh!

This is how we like to see the fish!

This is how we like to see the fish!

And a toast to you and Angel, George

And a toast to you and Angela, George

Athens – the Agora Forums

September 25, 2015 Leave a comment

The Agora of Athens (also known as “Forums”) was the center of the ancient city: a large, open square where the citizens could assemble for a wide variety of purposes. On any given day the space might be used as a market, or for an election, a dramatic performance, a religious procession, military drill, or athletic competition. Here administrative, political, judicial, commercial, social, cultural, and religious activities all found a place together in the heart of Athens, and the square was surrounded by the public buildings (“Stoas”) necessary to run the Athenian government.

Later the Agora defined the open-air, often tented, marketplace of a city where merchants had their shops and where craftsmen made and sold their wares. Today, open-air markets are still held in that same location. There were confectioners who made pastries and sweets, slave-traders, fishmongers, vintners, cloth merchants, shoe-makers, dress makers, and jewelry purveyors.  One of the Stoas (Stoa of Attalos) has been rebuilt just to show the size and complexity of the building.  It now houses the Museum shops.

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View looking west toward the Hephaisteion

Detail of the  Hephaisteion

Detail of the Hephaisteion

Romola is dwarfed by the Hephaisteion

Romola is dwarfed by the Hephaisteion

Lower colonnade of the Stoa of Attalos.

Lower colonnade of the Stoa of Attalos.

Bust of one of the residents of the Forum

Bust of one of the residents of the Forum

Some ,of the statuary

Some of the statuary

Shrine has been rebuilt

Much of the Shrine has been rebuilt

Inside the Shrine

Inside the Shrine

Not much left of the Metroon

Not much left of the Metroon, one of the early meeting places

One of the old walls

One of the old walls of the Forum

Categories: Traveling Tags: , , , ,
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