Last weekend my niece (11) and nephew (8) visited for a few days. On Friday we took them to the Reading Public Museum. Its dinosaur exhibit was a hit. Life-size animatronic models track your every movement and emit gut-wrenching bellows, snorts, and roars. It was like being an extra in Jurassic Park. A highlight was seeing doting parents hold their little ones up to the prehistoric reptiles, apparently to hear them scream and cry in terror. What fun!
Category Archives: Out and about
Thanks to everyone who sent Pablo birthday wishes! He had a fun-filled birthday weekend packed with a steak BBQ, presents, and a trip to the dog park in our new town. We were impressed with the dog park and overjoyed to see Pablo running around like a pup. In our last dog park Pablo spent all his time sniffing and marking territory. Here the minute he was out of the truck he took off. The difference appears to be that this dog park is grass and level unlike our old uneven gravel/dirt dog park. We’re looking forward to many more romps here.
You didn’t think you’d escape seeing a slideshow of our trip, did you? Above are some of the highlights we experienced during our magical week in Florence.
We’re off! K and I are leaving today for a delayed honeymoon to Florence, Italy. For the first half of the week K will be in business meetings, but then we get a few days to ourselves. While K has his nose to the grindstone, I’ll be off seeing the sights, sipping expresso, and dining at trattorias.
Yesterday we dropped Pablo off at the house of one of K’s co-workers. She has four pugs of her own plus a rescue pug, so I know Pablo will be in excellent hands. In fact, I’m a little bit worried he might prefer to stay there when we pick him up next week. Five pug friends, a cat-free house, and an enormous backyard, that’s some stiff competition!
Coming home to a pug-free house last night was hard. I miss the little fellow already (though not the begging at the table). See you soon, Paolo! Ciao!
Like the Italian carlino flag? Pick up the tee shirt at Cafe Press.
Okay, make that Saturday.
I recently learned about a dog park not too far from us (about a 10 minute drive) that opened in November. Since getting Pablo, we’ve never been near a conveniently-located dog park. When I lived in Jersey City, the local park kept promising one, but it never delivered. That meant that except for pug meet-ups, Pablo never had a chance to mingle off leash with his canine friends.
This dog park looks like it will fit the bill. It has two fenced in areas, one for large dog and one for the small guys. The only downside is that you do need a car to get there.
When K and I first arrived, Pablo was the lone dog. That soon changed. It was a bright, sunny day, and the dogs had a blast running around and chasing each other. Pablo, as one of the smaller dogs was a little out of his league. But he had a grand time sniffing around and being petted and fussed over by the other dog owners (he prefers people to dogs anyway).
We will definitely be back!
This past Friday was my daughter’s 25th birthday (that’s 175 in dog years, Pablo reminded me), and I took a trip to NYC to visit with her. We had a manicure, ate sushi in a Japanese restaurant, and caught up on each other’s lives. I also got the chance to see my grandkitty, Lady Lily (see above). It was wonderful to spend time with E and also to be back in NYC, my old stomping grounds.
Your guess is as good as mine. To see what’s on the other side? To sniff a neighbor’s lawn? To piddle on a peony?
On his walks Pablo always has definite ideas about what route to take. And if you try to direct him elsewhere, he goes into the classic pug knee-locked stance and won’t budge. Most of the time I have no objection to him acting as tour guide. After all, it’s his walk, not mine.
There is, however, one particular route I try to discourage and that’s when he makes a right turn to W Road, a busy street with a steady stream of traffic whizzing both ways and no traffic light. Yet sometimes, for whatever reason, Pablo gets it in his skull that he must cross W Road. He does this by lunging headfirst into the blacktop, oblivious to traffic. By now I know enough to hold him back, but the first few times we had some close calls. When there is a lull in vehicles we dash across the road. Then Pablo sniff a hedge or two, piddles on some leaves, and you guessed it, wants to head back. Another mad dash, and it’s safely back home. Until next time.
For the past several weeks I’ve been taking photos of houses gussied up for Halloween. I snapped most while I was out walking Pablo, but some were taken during our motorcycle trip to Virginia and West Virginia. I’m a purist, so I didn’t photograph cutesy Halloween decorations of smiling pumpkins. Halloween is supposed to be scary!
Back on the road after our stay at the Wayside Inn, we headed for West Virginia. Kermit waved to all those we passed.
Crosses like the ones below are very big in the South. Not something we see much of up North.
We arrived at our destination–Berkeley Springs in the town of Bath, West Virginia. The springs have a long history. They were long known to native tribes who introduced them to the first settlers who bathed in the warm waters and swore to their restorative powers.
Here is the Roman bath house where you can soak in mineral baths. Sadly, we didn’t have time to do take part. Maybe next time.
George Washington bathed here. Really!
This planter bursting with flowers stands in one of the springs.
A small stream led up to the inn where we stayed.
The Country Inn was a much larger inn than the Wayside. It has 70 rooms and its own spa.
This shady garden to one side of the inn was where I escaped to read.
Here’s our room at the inn.
Scenic views abounded. This is the last shot I took before we left for home. But, wait…
Did you think I could go all this time without mention of a pug? I spotted this friendly beauty on the streets of Bath.
Our motorcycle trip was a lot of fun. This post will cover the first half.
We met up with our fellow riders (we were 18 in all) at a motorcycle shop in Virginia where some of us were renting bikes. K has his own, a BMW touring bike, and Kermit always comes along for the ride. This is Kermit #2. The first Kermit fell off and K did not go back for it. (You can be sure I held on tight every second.)
I took this shot from the back of the bike.
Another shot of the countryside from the bike. We were on our way to our first stop, an 18th century inn in the Shenandoah Valley.
And here it is—the Wayside Inn, the oldest continuously operating inn in America. We stayed here for two nights.
This fine fellow stood on the porch.
Each room at the inn is unique. This was ours.
Ye Olde Politically Incorrect Sign:
And after filling up the tank, we’re off again! Tune in tomorrow for Part 2.