Thursday, August 9, 2018

Green Mountain Getaway

The Green Mountains

There’s a reason Vermont is called The Green Mountain State – and it has little to do with Green Mountain Coffee – a homegrown marketing ploy of Keurig – now owned by Dr Pepper/Snapple Group.  And, don’t expect to tour the Green Mountain Coffee factory, but you can tour the old railroad station in Waterbury (across the tracks from some big buildings that may have something to do with Keurig and/or Green Mountain Coffee) – the tour consisted of some coffee samples and standalone exhibit kiosk’s.   Don’t bother.

But, do tour Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream place, if only for the samples at the end. They have an interesting history, I like their social responsibility, and they made one helluva product, even though the company is now owned by Unilever.  That gets mentioned in the tour, but the emphasis is on Ben & Jerry, who reportedly still live nearby in Burlington.

The hills around Stowe are alive – not only with music from the Von Trapp Family Lodge – but from bars, bistro’s, and coffee houses. 

It’s really neat. 

Over time the image of Stowe has changed – I guess – from a winter playground – to a 4-season getaway.  I understand, hidden in the hills, are huge 2nd homes that include swimming pools, tennis courts, and the such.  Getaways.

We stayed in one of the Von Trapp family facilities (The Von Trapps of The Sound of Music fame – although the tie to that story and the movies contain many mixed messages – a fact present family members recognize).  The Von Trapp Family Lodge is a private hotel and 2300 acre development that is operated by the grandson of Maria (who was played by Julie Andrews in the movie).  Sam’s dad, Johannes, was born near Philadelphia – so his tie to the Austrian countryside is one of history.  And, Johannes was never one of the family singers.   The name, and the history, and the images remain, but that’s about all. 

Here’s what the lodge looks like now.

Don’t get me wrong – it’s a fabulous place – and if it was 2,000 miles closer to Albuquerque I’d think seriously about going there quite often.

The stay in Stowe, and nearby Burlington – was for business, not all pleasure.  

There was the requisite visit to the county “field days” – where tractors were pulled, skillets were thrown, 4-H projects were exhibited – and carnival rides spun round ‘n round.
Kind of a flat-like-a-pancake sopapilla/funnel cake.

More in a future posting about the visit to the world’s 2nd largest predominantly French speaking city, Montreal.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Monday, June 25, 2018

On the Border Rodman

On a recent business trip to So-Cal my inquisitive mind wanted to know -  how are international relations with our neighbor to the south.

What's it like on the border.  So, off to Tijuana - kind of.

The stop at a shopping center brought forth these images:

From US to Mexico - it seemed like worlds away.

There weren't any new walls, that we could see - but there was a facility for handling those who chose to walk across the border - North to South or South to North.

Waiting on the retaining walls, inside the US, were dozens of folks waiting for arrivals from Mexico.  They came, they went, they shopped.

Of note, the stores we visited at the Las Americas Outlet Center didn't seem to accept Mexican money.  I'll bet any of the stores across the border accepted the US dollar.

Back up north, the purpose of the award.  New Mexico State Fair General Manager Dan Mourning accepting the Merrill Award from the Western Fairs Association.  The Merrill award was presented for the work that New Mexico had done in establishing a "sensory station" that allowed our friends and neighbors who are autistic and have similar maladies, a place to enjoy the fair.  The New Mexico State Fair venue has led to numerous other fairs adopting a similar program - a quiet place to get away - if only for a few moments. Here's Dan with Western Fairs Association Executive Director Sarah Cummings.

Then, there was this.  My attempt at international relations for countries across the pond.  Here I am with a famous basketball player, who has played a role in relations with North Korea - the one and only Dennis Rodman.

I'm glad he didn't stand up!

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Thursday Morning Tweets in the city

The sights and sounds of the city were evident this Thursday morning.

Shortly before dawn, somewhere in the immediate vicinity of our humble abode (that's abode, not adobe), a typical city street lined with houses.

Front yards that were once grass are now "hardscaped".

In the back yards, far away from curious eyes, came the triumphant echoing call

That was followed, by the hollow call from one of our most persistent hangers-on, the cousin to the pigeon -

Mourning his (or her) way - looking for love.

Meanwhile, a few hundred miles south of us, I captured this picture a couple weeks ago, beach side near Puerto Vallarta.

Here is "Iggy".

Nature, in all it's glory.

Listen and watch, as nature goes about the daily routine.

The natural tweets are much more peaceful than the electronic ones!

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Throwback to Grandpa Beimer

La Junta, Colorado Tribune
June 13, 1906

Grandpa and Grandma. 

Grandpa was born in Ft. Madison, Iowa.

Grandma was born in Sweden.

The happy couple many years later in Taos.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Say it again, Sam

You gotta check out my friend Sam Donaldson's takes -  He knows of what he speaks  -  as opposed to so many people that just blabber away...

Sunday, April 22, 2018

It's our planet

This is our planet.
Please protect it - from all harms physical and political.