Torshavn, Faroe Islands.

Torshavn, Faroe Islands,  August 21, 2017:  Holland America assured us that they loved whales but wanted to warn us.  “Holland America expressly disassociates itself from whaling.  We cannot control the cultural of the areas of the world to which we travel.”  The line told us that if anyone had booked a tour through Holland America and wanted to cancel it and not go ashore they … Continue reading Torshavn, Faroe Islands.

Shetland, No Ponies

Lerwick, Shetland Islands, Scotland:  The Shetland islands, no ponies, but we did see a goat.  He was raising money to buy an infrared camera to be used by the Lerwick Lifeboat Society, the local search and rescue.  We met him in a shop that sells hand crafted soap made from goats’ milk packed in little Shetland wool pouches.  Since we arrived on a Sunday, one … Continue reading Shetland, No Ponies

Rising to Sea Level, the North Sea Canal.

We are onboard and underway, on our cruise to Iceland and Greenland.  But we weren’t sure that this would happen.  I had complications from surgery the week before we left for Amsterdam and I didn’t get clearance from the docs until Friday afternoon.  We flew to Amsterdam on Sunday.   While waiting I could not bring myself to do things that I normally do in preparation.  … Continue reading Rising to Sea Level, the North Sea Canal.

Amsterdam Thoughts

  Our Cruise to Iceland and Greenland leaves from Amsterdam.  Given the vagaries of Alaska weather and our desire to avoid jet lag on the cruise we arrived in Amsterdam with four nights and three days to acclimatize.  Amsterdam is a good city to do that because we already know it well, we can relax and not feel compelled to see everything.   We can visit … Continue reading Amsterdam Thoughts

When Lost in the Forrest, and other Uncommon Gems.

Our summer is full of the joy of music festivals, the Sitka Summer Music Festival, the Winnipeg Folk Festival, and the Uncommon Music Festival, Sitka’s newest. The Uncommon festival features music that is not usually heard but should be.  This year we had music ranging from early composers like Orlande de Lassus, through Amy Beach, to 21st century Fairbanks composer John Luther Adams.  There was … Continue reading When Lost in the Forrest, and other Uncommon Gems.

A Joyful Noise in Winnipeg

The Winnipeg Folk Festival is an annual compass point for our family, an annual highlight.   This year was the 44th festival.  We’ve been to 38. We go to connect with friends and introduce our grandkids to the joys of a multicultural festival, just as we did with our own kids.  We also go to discover new acts, and sometimes get a nostalgic kick. There’s the … Continue reading A Joyful Noise in Winnipeg

Wild and Scenic, 50 years on.

Fifty years ago we weren’t sure.  The Wild and Scenic Rivers act was before Congress and if it passed the St. Criox, the boundary river between Minnesota and Wisconsin, was to be one of the first 8 rivers included in the system.  Landowners along the river would have restrictions on what they could build, especially if that building could be seen from the river.  The … Continue reading Wild and Scenic, 50 years on.

“THIS is why we’re American…  baseball.”

Bases loaded, one out, a long shot to center right, fielded on one bounce.  One run Sioux Falls Canary scores but with a great throw to third the St. Paul Saints turn a double play, third to second, inning over.  Jake turns to me and says “THIS is why we’re American…  baseball.” We are in the new 7,200 seat CHS stadium in Lower Town, downtown, … Continue reading “THIS is why we’re American…  baseball.”

After 241 Years…. Jefferson Still Lives!

Two hundred and forty one years ago a resolution written by Thomas Jefferson and moved by John Adams passed the Continental Congress.  It read, in part: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these … Continue reading After 241 Years…. Jefferson Still Lives!

A Beautiful Memory. Sitka Summer Music Festival 2017

The Sitka Summer Musical Festival ends today with a fundraising brunch.  I will not be there because I will be on an airplane traveling to Minnesota and grand kids.  Together Brian, Liz, Liam, Fiona, Suzi and I will go to the Winnipeg Folk Festival.  These two festivals, back to back, reflect different music traditions.  But they have a lot in common. They give us comfort … Continue reading A Beautiful Memory. Sitka Summer Music Festival 2017

Stepping into a Salad, Low tide at Point Brown.

It was like stepping off the boat into a salad.  That’s what it was like at Point Brown when Allen Marine dropped a group from the Sitka Conservation Society on the east side of Kruzof Island. Sunday morning saw the lowest tide of the year, minus 3.21 feet.  Around the time of summer solstice the Earth is closest to the Sun.  When the new moon … Continue reading Stepping into a Salad, Low tide at Point Brown.

Beltane Bash (Happy May Day!)

This is Beltane, Celtic May Day.  In 2002 we were in London walking down Great Russell Street and we  ran across the “Beltane Bash” held in conjunction with the “Pagan Pride March.” This is from a family letter written in May 2002. Wherever we travel we find things that interest us.  Saturday we walked into the fifth annual Pagan Pride Parade.  The parade was to … Continue reading Beltane Bash (Happy May Day!)

Make America Fit Again!

Donald Trump has been president for 100 days.  Around the country people are marching for “Climate, Jobs and Justice.”  James Poulson from the Sentinel said this was part of the President’s “Make America Fit Again” campaign. About 100 Sitkans marched from the Crescent Harbor shelter, around the Russian Church and back down Lincoln Street to the Episcopal See House.  Motorists, not expecting a parade, drove … Continue reading Make America Fit Again!

Art Deco Hospital

I was born in a magnificent Art Deco hospital in Jersey City, the Margaret Hague Maternity (named after Boss Frank, “I am the law,” Hague’s mother) Hospital.  It was part of the Jersey City Medical Center.   The Art Deco medical center provided virtually free health care for all Jersey City residents.  Now it’s a condo called “The Beacon” and is not available to virtually all … Continue reading Art Deco Hospital

Resurrection in the Food Web

I often wonder if people in the Southern Hemisphere view Easter differently than we north of the line.  Easter is so tied into rebirth, renewal and resurrection.  It comes naturally in the springtime.  If the days were getting shorter, leaves falling and flowers wilting I am not sure how I would view Easter, perhaps as the promise of resurrection at some time in the future. … Continue reading Resurrection in the Food Web