Patriot’s Day

American Cemetery - Colleville-sur-Mer For September 11, 2019, my calendar says "Patriot's Day", which I assumed meant recognizing the horrific terrorist attack of September 11, 2001. I did a little research. I found that Patriot's Day is several states' commemoration of the battles of Lexington and Concord during the American Revolution. Maine, Massachusetts and Connecticut … Continue reading Patriot’s Day

Doe Elk

Early morning in Smoky Mountains NP an elk herd was grazing on the edge of the forest. This doe was off by itself, as if being shunned by the others. She was aware of me, but didn't seem bothered by my presence. Ho hum, just another butinsky. Thought for the Day: Make someone happy today … Continue reading Doe Elk

Cedar Creek Sunset

Cedar Creek Sunset Labor Day weekend. Darkness is falling like a shroud; dying embers from our marshmallow roast are losing their glow as the sun falls below the horizon, and the sliver of a moon is little help. I notice that the moon is falling behind the big tree. Hmmm, I always thought while the … Continue reading Cedar Creek Sunset

50’s Drive-In

Cape Cod Drive-In Labor Day. Last big weekend for this classic 50's drive-in on Cape Cod before entering the "off season". I found this piece of Americana on US 28 in the vicinity of West Harwich. Driving by at dusk, I thought I was in a time machine. Gull wing shape, garish florescent bulbs following … Continue reading 50’s Drive-In

Husker Fan

Only two more days until the Nebraska Cornhuskers open their 2019 football season against Southern Alabama. The entire Husker nation, which is world-wide, is excited for this season to get underway, hoping to make last year's 4-8 record a distant memory. Husker t-shirts are even being sold by street vendors in Jerusalem. Is this escapism … Continue reading Husker Fan

Sunflower

Giant Sunflower Sunflowers are in full bloom, peak time for butterflies and Nature's warning that the lazy hazy days of summer are numbered. The first plant to show up in my new "prairie" this year was a volunteer sunflower -- center stage, like it was the star of the show. Not knowing if anything else … Continue reading Sunflower

Luc-sur-Mer

Village near Juno Beach Luc-sur-Mer is one of many beautiful sites in France's Normandy region. One could spend weeks along the Normandy coast visiting one small village after another. Each one is picturesque and filled with WW II memorials and moving stories of D-Day. Located near Juno Beach, where the British forces landed, Luc-sur-Mer is … Continue reading Luc-sur-Mer

Foundation?

Baptist Church, 1827 This photo was taken in Cades Cove of Smoky Mountains NP. The church was built by the congregation of the Primitive Baptist Church in 1827. A building's foundation is the most critical element of its structural integrity, and ultimately its longevity. To prevent heaving of the soil during a hard freeze, the … Continue reading Foundation?

Birthday Boy

11 years old There are two things that this handsome lad absolutely loves: playing baseball and following the Huskers. Playing baseball at the highest level for his age group, he maintains a great attitude for the game. Win or lose, he gives his best effort and leaves the field with a smile on his face … Continue reading Birthday Boy

Notre Dame

Notre Dame, 2019 There are 87 cathedrals in France, all of them named Notre Dame meaning "First Lady" as in the Virgin Mary. All but one of those cathedrals include "du ______" in their name describing its location; e.g. Notre Dame du Rouen is the cathedral in Rouen, France. The Notre Dame in Paris is … Continue reading Notre Dame

Les Invalides

Les Invalides - Paris The beautiful gold dome of Les Invalides can be seen from all parts of Paris. It was established in 1670 by Louis XIV as a hospital and home for aging and sick soldiers. The complex includes a large church, 15 courtyards and many buildings. The National Military Museum is located here, … Continue reading Les Invalides

Livonia, MI

Livonia City Hall Livonia, MI is a prosperous suburb of Detroit. An incorporated city, it has a population approaching 100,000, making it the 9th largest municipality in the state. The local economy is driven (pun intended) by the automotive industry, with Ford being the largest single employer. Based on the city hall and other public … Continue reading Livonia, MI

Chateau Gaillard

Chateau Gaillard - 1196 King Richard I of England, aka Richard the Lionheart, and feudal Duke of Normandy, built this fortress in 1196. Sitting on a limestone cliff overlooking the Seine, it overlooks the small town of Les Andelys. A large sum of money was spent by King Richard to complete the chateau's construction in … Continue reading Chateau Gaillard

Monet’s House & Garden

Monet's House and Garden Two surprises awaited me when I visited Claude Monet's house and gardens in Giverny, France. One, his house was much bigger than I thought it would be -- a mansion for the times he lived, and two, his gardens were less formal than imagined. Mid summer was the perfect time to … Continue reading Monet’s House & Garden

Vernon, France

Castle Ruins Walking around the charming village of Vernon, France I found the remains of a medieval castle wall and tower. Surrounded by gardens now, it was a pretty sight. The old town center is near the Seine River, where it's been since William the Conqueror marched through. It was an easy walk from the … Continue reading Vernon, France

St. Germain

Chateau de Saint-Germain-en-Laye Located in the Paris suburb of St. Germain, this little fixer-upper is formally called the Chateau de Saint-Germain-en-Laye. Louis VI built the first castle on this site in 1124. A chapel (not shown here) was added in 1238. Expanded several times over the centuries, Louis XIV was born here in 1638, but … Continue reading St. Germain

Tough Turkey

Wild Turkey Along a trail in Cades Cove, Great Smoky Mountains NP, I caught up to a group of 10-12 people moving off the trail in both directions to make room for this wild turkey rooster. He was all fanned out, strutting with purpose, looking for a fight. No one was approaching it, let alone … Continue reading Tough Turkey

Normandy

Anonymous Beach This is NOT a beach in France's Normandy region, but I am on Omaha Beach today, celebrating the 4th of July, America's Independence Day, on the 75th anniversary of D-Day. I am humbly paying my respects to all WWII veterans, and praying that younger generations will learn to appreciate the privilege as well … Continue reading Normandy