Friday, May 31, 2013

Hello Again from San Francisco

I went into San Francisco again today and just kind of wandered around the area near the Transmerica Pyramid.  I was going to try to make it to the Fisherman's Wharf but the line for the Cable Car was hellacious.
Here is a picture looking up at the Transmerica Pyramid.

Tomorrow I head for home.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Hello from San Francisco

Although I'm actually staying in Emeryville.  I did manage to get over to San Francisco briefly.  I'm going to spend more time there tomorrow.
I guess it wouldn't be a picture of San Francisco without a picture of a cable car.  So here goes.

Good Morning From the Coast Starlight

Well, I was greeted this morning with the sight of Sacramento, CA.  I think the train got here fairly early, so I had the opportunity to get out and walk around a bit.  It was a little on the chilly side though.
 A shot of my train.  It's amazing just how long it is.
One of a few shots of Sacramento that I took.  I kind of liked this one because I put the station sign in it.  Within two hours, I should be in Emeryville.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Good Night From the Coast Starlight

Well, the sun has set and it is another night on the train.
I think this is Crater Lake in Oregon but I'm not sure.  I apologize for the picture but it was getting dark and I was at full film speed and still not quite enough shutter speed.

I didn't really appreciate this portion of the route the first time I took it, but I guess that was comparing it to the Empire Builder.  The Coast Starlight is a pretty nice looking route.

Along the Way on the Coast Starlight

Just a couple of pictures while we are stopped in Portland, OR.  They have a pretty cool looking train station here.
 And the station itself lends some pretty sound advice.  I think that everyone should take at least one train trip in their life.  Even if it is just the trip from Detroit (or wherever) to Chicago.  It is a very relaxing and pleasant way to travel (for the most part).  If you do that, just remember that the distance trains are just that much nicer.  No getting packed like a sardine in one of these babies.
This was another train that was waiting at the station.  I'm thinking that this is possibly the other half of the Empire Builder but I am not sure.

I'll try to make another post tonight but we will see how the celluar gods cooperate with me.

Saying Good Bye to Seattle

Well it's almost time for me to say good bye to Seattle and hop on the next leg of my journey.  In a few minutes, I will be hoping on the Coast Starlight to continue on to Emeryville/San Francisco.  I am waiting in King Street Station which looks a lot nicer than the last time I was here.  They did a really nice job with its restoration.
 One last look at Seattle as I head into the station.  I kind of liked the curve of the canopy in this shot.   Seattle was a pretty nice city and I hope to come back.
 A shot of the tower of the station.  This is one of the aspects of old stations that I like.  I seem to remember the station in Portland had some pretty sound advice.
And one of the best combinations of words in the English language - "To trains".  I may do a post tonight of a picture from along the way.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Greetings from Seattle - Day 2

Well today was day two for me in Seattle.  I ended up going to the Flight Museum and it was pretty cool.  I didn't do much else today though
Tomorrow I head down to Emeryville/San Francisco.  I can't wait.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Greetings from Rain Soaked Seattle

Well, I got to Seattle today.  Went to the Fish Market earlier today and then tonight I went to the Space Needle.
As you can see, it was pretty rainy today and I was still a little out of it of sorts.  Actually, I feel like I'm swaying right now.  I'd swear I hear train whistles.

Greetings from Seattle and Happy Memorial Day

Well, I made it to Seattle.  The train arrived about 45 minutes early but I'm taking a little break before I head to somewhere around Seattle.  Since it's Memorial Day, I will post the picture I took around Everett.
This is the USS Ford which is an Oliver Hazard Perry Class Frigate.  She is like the DeWert which visited Detroit last year.  She was built in 1983 and is named after Gunners Mate Patrick O. Ford.  He was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions on a River Patrol Boat in Vietnam.  He was the after gunner on a PBR.   His boat was attacked by the Viet Cong, which killed his patrol leader and coxswain.  Despite being wounded, he continued to fire at theViet Cong from his station.  After which, he lead the other men in the patrol to safety.  As he returned to his boat, he was killed.  As I said, he was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross and had a ship named after him.

The Ford is attached to the Navy Station at Everett.

Good Morning from Eastern Washington and the Empire Builder

Just want to wish everyone a good morning as I continue on the Empire Builder.  Currently I am in Leavenworth, Washington.  I apologize for the quality of this picture but the window to the front of me isn't the cleanest, but I really wanted one shot of the Empire Builder itself.

I wanted to do a post last night but this has been the first time I've been able to connect my phone to the computer so here goes.
Well I am almost to Seattle. Glacier was beautiful as expect.  The station in Whitefish was pretty cool.  I can't wait to see the sights of Seattle.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Good Morning from the Empire Builder

The weather is being very uncooperative this time.  I was hoping to get some nice sunrise shots.  Instead I get a nice dreary shot.
Still having fun though.  Met some pretty nice people at breakfast this morning.  That is the other aspect of train travel that I like.  For the most part the people on the train are a lot friendlier than on other modes of travel.  As always, I will do more detailed posts when I get home.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Good Night From the Empire Builder

I leave you with one more picture from today.  It was the last picture I could take, so it's not the greatest.
The Empire Builder runs along the Mississippi for a bit.  I kind of wish the sky was clearer because this would have made a nice sunset picture.

Remember the Reason

As you are cooking on the grill or traveling to far away and exotic places, remember the reason why you have a three day weekend.
Remember all the soldiers, sailors and airmen that have given their lives in the defense of the nation.

Michigan Exposures Hits the Rails

What started as what I thought would be a one time event has become an annual event.  Once again, I hit the rails and go to see the Great American West.  This time, I am repeating the trip I took in 2010 by taking the Empire Builder to Seattle, then the Coast Starlight to Emeryville and the California Zephyr back home.  I can't wait to see some of the sights again.
 But before I can start all of that, I have to hopeon the Wolverine in Ann Arbor.  I didn't take too many pictures on the way between Ann Arbor and Chicago. I did manage to get a picture of the train though.
 I didn't have that long in Chicago, so I only took a few pictures.  I am really liking my new lens for taking pictures of buildings.  This of course is the Sears Tower (still can't bring myself to call it by its current name).
And this is the shot of Chicago as I was heading out. Sadly, I couldn't get a good angle on it though.  As always, more pictures when I get home.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Messing With the A-10 Thunderbolt

I was happy with my A-10 pictures from Saturday but I wanted to do a little more to them to make them pop a little more.
What do you guys think?  Does this look better than the other ones?  I like the deeper blue sky and the more constrast between the plane and the sky.

Messing with Zappa the Cat

I was kind of inspired by a post on Facebook tonight.  Someone posted a picture of their dog and it reminded me of a depressing French movie or something like that.  So I figured I would try something with Zappa.
 I think I'd like this one a little more if my iPod cable weren't in the picture.  I think it's oka
 I really like this one, especially since I made it grainy and stuff.  He looks like he's staring off into space but he really needs a cigarette and should be speaking deep French voice.  "I am contemplating my life right now and it's meaninglessness" or something like that.  "It has been 14 years since I've known love and happiness..."  but in French.
I'd like this picture more if he weren't in front of the air conditioner and my cables.  Oh well, this was the only place I could get him to pose.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Flower Day at the Eastern Market

Ever since I started this blog, several people have told me that I need to check out the Eastern Market on Flower Day.  So I made sure that I had my calendar circled for this day but sadly, I didn't wake up as soon as I had hoped.  I was planning to walk down the Dequindre Cut again but it was pretty hot today, so I looked for a parking spot closer to the Eastern Market.
 So I ended up parking at the spot at the Gratiot end of the Dequindre Cut.  I wasn't 100% sure about that but there were a few other cars there, so it seemed okay.  But that made it so that I wasn't going to stay long at the Eastern Market.
 If there is a picture to sum up Flower Day at the Eastern Market, this one is it.  I was amazed at the number of cars around the market.  And people dragging wagons of flowers.  But still, I soldiered on.
 A shot of the skyline from the Market.  I think a better view would have been on the other side of this bridge.
 Some of the shops around the market.  These have been here for quite a while.
 A closer shot of those buildings.
 And finally some flowers.
 There were all sorts of flowers here and I'm not about to try to identify any of them.  I will just leave you with the pictures.
 There were a couple of musicians performing.
 And people....
 ...lots of them.
 But the flowers were cool.
 Especially the ones in the shade.
 This just gives you an idea of the number of flowers.
 This group was performing a blues tune and they were pretty good.
 More flowers....
 I think I would have liked this shot more if all of it were in the shade.
 Looking up at one of the shacks.
 Another flower.
 Another group of flowers.
 I kind of like this purple one.
 I really like this one.
 And this one.
 Another group of flowers.  I would imagine this would be the place to go if you were stocking up a flower garden.
 All sorts of flowers.
 I love these blue flowers.
 And these.
 Did I mention there were a few people there?
 A mural that you would only find in Detroit.  Some sort of mutant vegetable bull.
 There were other kinds of stalls there too.
 Some sort of bird statue.
 Another shot of the skyline to put the market in perspective.
 A group of restaurants near the market.
 And then I headed back to my car.
 I kind of like these buildings.
 A hardware store.
 I'm lumping this in with my Eastern Market shots because I don't feel like starting up another post.  This is St. Joseph's Church.  I posted pictures of it before.
 But I couldn't quite get this shot because I didn't have the right lens for it.  Sadly, I was shooting right into the sun.
 And then I noticed that the door was open, so I wandered inside but not too far.  The church is just as beautiful inside as outside.
 One of the windows.
And one more shot of the church before heading to my car.