From Victoria to Home

 Thursday, September 09, 2010

Let’s see – I last left us in Victoria…..


After I got my turn to shop in the Needlework shop we found, it was time to continue on our journey.  We hopped on a (very, very rough) ferry to Port Angeles, crossing the US border into Washington.  We continued on to Seattle and stayed with another of DH’s cousins.  The next morning we were up early and after finding the mecca that is Starbucks (I don’t drink much coffee, but I do like one in the morning to get me moving), we began another urban hiking tour. (As a total aside – the coffee in Starbucks in Seattle tasted MILES better than what I get at Starbucks at home – still perplexed at the difference – water?  beans? baristas?  *shrug*)


We first stopped at Seattle’s library:



It is one of the coolest buildings I’ve ever been in.  The architecture is just neat and the interior is all colour-coded – there’s a red floor, an acid green floor, a fluorescent yellow floor….  We rode the escalators all the way to the 10th floor.


Then we hiked over to the older part of Seattle – Pioneer town and went on the Underground tour.  It was a very entertaining tour that had us hiking under large portions of Seattle while we were told why it existed (it has to do with them levelling Seattle to get it high enough above sea level to not flood…) and some of its more interesting uses in times past:



When the tour finishes, you end up here:



This portico is used as a bus stop – and it opened when the World Fair was held in Seattle – and I’ve gone and forgotten what year that was – 1920s?


After we finished our tour, we headed down to the piers to wander around some of the shops there.  We found a great shop Ye Olde Curiosity Shop on Pier 54.  It has tons of really neat and strange displays, including two mummies.  Besides selling some odd and neat things, it’s a bit like a museum (scroll through the slideshow on the homepage to see some of the things inside the store).  DS#2 found this when we walked in:



A real one-armed bandit….  :-)


Naturally we continued on to Pike’s Place.  Doesn’t every tourist go there?


We were lucky enough to see the guys who toss fish around:



They’ll only do it if someone actually *buys* a fish.  I was tempted (because the fish all looked so utterly AMAZING), but it never would have made it to our home – we still had a weeks worth of driving ahead of us!


We wandered around the market for a little while, but we still had to make another stop to another Seattle landmark:



The Space Needle!


We rode up to the top and enjoyed the views of Seattle.  I have to admit that I was a little non-plussed with the Space Needle, but then again, I live within a 1/2 hour of the CN Tower…..  I’m spoiled!


We spent one more night in Seattle, but the next morning it was time to begin our journey home.  I have to say that the drive home wasn’t nearly as interesting as the drive out to the west coast – but that was likely because we had to hurry home.  It took us 2 & 1/2 weeks to get to the west coast – and we had to make it home in a week!


Anyway, we started driving…..  We drove through Idaho: (pardon the blurry shot – very windy!)


We found a hotel just outside of Yellowstone Park.  It was definitely one of the more interesting places we stayed.  Here’s a picture of the door to our hotel room:



That would be John Wayne on the door.  Unsure of just what that meant , we opened the door to find this:



We were staying in the John Wayne theme room…..  It was, well, odd.  And the bathroom had pink (???!!???) towels in it.  I never thought John Wayne was a pansy, but what do I know?  The sign in the bathroom was funny too though – it claimed that the toilet paper was just like John Wayne – it was rough, it was tough and it wouldn’t take cr&! off anyone….  :-)


Upon leaving our room, we discovered these two dudes:


DSC04640Yes, those are life-sized.  So much so that every time I left the room, I kept thinking I was about to run into some people.  I apologised to them.   Multiple times.  (I never said I was bright….)


We stopped at the entrance to Yellowstone for the project’s beauty shot:



And drove on into the park a short distance to do a short look around – it was late in the day by then, so we didn’t have tons of time before darkness was going to fall….


We found an enormous herd of elk (a rough count came up with at least 35 animals!) right out front of one of the hotels in the park:


They actually have their own security people – they kept moving the people further away from the animals whenever the elk moved to graze elsewhere.  Apparently they don’t need to cut the grass with a lawnmower – the elk do the job quite handily…..


We continued on to see some of the terraces:



The colours and tones and textures of these formations was amazing.  DS#1 took so many pictures of these things as he was fascinated with the textures.  They were super neat to look at.


The next morning we again drove into Yellowstone but this time continued through the park and stopped at:




Old Faithful


It erupts every 90 minutes (give or take 15 minutes) and it’s quite the thing to see.  I was surprised at the force behind its eruption.  They keep people pretty far away from it for safety reasons.  It shot off amazingly high….  Definitely worth seeing.


We then drove until some ungodly hour of the night (I think it was past 2AM before we made it to our hotel!)….


We were on our way to………..


DSC04970But before going to visit the giant heads, we first stopped in Deadwood…..  I don’t think I’ve ever seen so many casinos in one place – beyond what I’ve seen in Las Vegas.  But, they did do a couple of wild west re-enactments.  DH got roped into helping out with a re-enactment of the shooting of Wild Bill Hickock….  He played the bartender:



Here he is with Wild Bill and the guy who shot him (whose name is eluding me right now – sorry!):




We left Deadwood and moved on to our hotel for the night.


The next day, we wanted to do some caving, so we found ourselves at Wind Cave.  While it was disappointing that we couldn’t roam the caves at our will – it was a guided tour, we still had an enjoyable time there:



The place is full of formations like this:




It’s called boxwork and is very fragile.  They actually ask you on the tour to not touch anything as the oil from your hands wrecks the boxwork.  The shapes and textures that it takes on are simply amazing.


Once we were out of the cave, we continued on to this landmark:



Now, being Canadian, I have to admit that Mount Rushmore didn’t hold much lure for me.  But, understanding how important of a landmark it is for Americans, I wanted to see just what it was all about….


Well, all I can say is WOW!


DSC05088Pictures just can’t show the awesome size and scale of this monument.  It’s amazing to see in person.  I was awestruck by how challenging it had to have been to carve this monument.  What a sight!


The next couple of days were spent driving.  And driving.  And driving.  And then, just to add some variety – we drove some more.  I’m not sure we even stopped for pictures.  We eventually ended up in Detroit, Michigan.  I remember, by that point, being very tired.  I think we got to our hotel in the wee hours again……


We spent our last full day visiting the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village.    I had no idea there was such an amazing attraction this close to our home.  Granted, it’s not a quick hours drive away (more like 6 or 7 hours), but it’s still close enough that I’d consider going just for the weekend…..


Greenfield village is a historic town re-creation (for fellow Torontonians – it’s a bit like Black Creek Pioneer Village), but it’s a bit more focused on the Ford family.  Staff are dressed in historical costumes and there’s lots of neat things to look at.  In touring Henry Ford’s home, I naturally spied a little bit of needlework:


DSC05122 DSC05123

But, alas, yet again, no one could tell me anything about the pieces.  The one on the left is a perforated paper piece similar to what I’ve seen at Black Creek.  The one on the right did appear to be done on a very rough linen.


We went for a ride in a Model T:


DSC05133And both DS’ got to make their own brass candlesticks:


 DSC05140 DSC05153

They each only large enough to hold a birthday candle, but the boys just loved getting to work the lathe (they’re standing in front of the lathe). 


We continued on into the Henry Ford museum and saw so many old and historically important cars (even the car that JFK was shot in!).  The funniest vehicle we saw was this one:



And right next to it, we got to make DS#2 into a hot dog:


DSC05234(he told us just how to ‘dress’ him – the relish *had* to be on top, apparently…).


After we left the Henry Ford museum, we crossed the border back into Canada and drove home.  We didn’t make it in the front door until after 11pm, but it was wonderful to be home and sleep in our own beds.


It was the most amazing holiday ever.  I can’t believe all the things we saw and did.  DH is working his way through the over 3,000 pictures and trying to cull it down to a more reasonable number for printing.


If you’ve read all the tales of our summer adventures, I thank you for putting up with it all.  I’ll now be returning to more ‘normal’ blogging…  I’ve got a finish to share and I just received the most stunning exchange.  But the camera cable and camera aren’t living on the same plane right now, so once I locate them, I’ll get some more stitchy-related pictures.


In the meantime, how about a couple more pics  of the NN stash I bought?DSC02955DSC02961


Just some basics – stretcher bars and some neat needle slides…  A couple of maris because one day I will try Temari!  And a round Kumihimo plate with some thread drops to make working with Kumihimo braids easier.


DSC02964 DSC02967


The hummingbird is actually for holding balls of pearl cotton.  It was just so pretty that it had to come home with me.  I also bought a scissor fob and thread picker and some canvas pegs (which are in use already and are very handy!)….




And two of the new needleminders from Kelmscott.  Also in use already.  Aren’t they the prettiest things?


Silverlotus 8:24 PM  

Wow, you had a fabulous trip, Erica. That's for sharing.

I absolutely love the hummingbird perle cotton holder. I had no idea such a think existed. Now, though, I must have one! lol!

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