This is the Hoover Dam with Lake Mead behind it. If you look at the white band above the lake you can see how low the water level has dropped with years of drought. The original Boulder Dam was built in the 30s during the Depression. Thousands of workers flocked to the site for work. The Dam was renamed after President Hoover – it provides hydroelectricity and water.
This photograph shows the scale of construction with the original road. There is now a bypass which makes it safer for tourists to look at the dam. Although it is a miracle of modern engineering, there is always an ecological cost to pay when you divert a river (the Colorado River). We waste so much of our most precious resource on the planet – water.
When you visit or live in arid places you become very aware of how much we need water. I wish we could send a little of our excess water in Houston to our dry neighbors. After a 10 year drought we are now in the throes of a wet decade. There is moss in my garden!!! I left that behind in Scotland…
I am standing in Arizona looking at the impossibly blue sky of Nevada. None of my photographs have been altered. The light is fantastic.
This is my first glimpse of the Grand Canyon through the bus window. More on the trip from hell next time.
Celebrating Teddy’s 60th birthday at a rooftop hotel in Mobile, Alabama
…and he snores too. Teddy and I rarely travel together because of our elderly cat but made a special effort to go to a new place for his 60th birthday. When we married he was 24 years old and I can’t figure out how all this time has passed. Teddy went ahead of me and I arrived at Mobile Regional Airport on his birthday. He picked me up in a rental car and we went straight across the fabulous Mobile Bay causeway . Sometimes water that close to a roadway scares me but this was just sublime. We started looking for brown historical sites signs and starting learning the fascinating history of Mobile.
View from the original settlement of Blakely near Mobile. The city of Mobile is in the far distance.
This whole city, named Blakely, was abandoned after an epidemic of yellow fever in the 1800s and everyone moved to the new settlement of Mobile on the other side of the vast bay. Five rivers create a delta into the bay. From our busy metropolis, this was absolute bliss – very few people and polite drivers. We went to lunch at an Oyster place with a great view across the delta. After two glasses of wine I decided ‘we’ would drive to just over the border of Alabama into Florida. It was wonderful. Teddy and Bunny decided that there was no reason to change the habits of a lifetime and had a spat about which direction we should be going in… There was no cell phone service deep in the country and the GPS stopped working. By the time we had dinner in the rooftop restaurant of our hotel, all was bliss in Teddy and Bunny land. 🐻 🐰
Many more posts of a place less traveled and some funny stories.
I took the ferry from San Diego to Coronado Island (which isn’t really an island but an isthmus). It was a gloriously bright morning so no need for words just photographs.
Katniss, the feral cat
This isn’t my first hurricane rodeo but this one worries me. We are way beyond the tidal surge but millions of people are not. Our ground has been saturated with rain this year after a decade of drought and there is no room for the expected catastrophic rain event to go. Our house is on a gentle slope upwards from a containment pond but this year our street flooded up to the garages.
I filled up my hurricane box months ago with water and other essentials but when I went to the supermarket yesterday the water had disappeared. It is ironic that in the midst of so much water you might not have any. If the flood is too much the water treatment facilities break down. That’s why I have so much bleach… We have a new roof (the old one was leaking) so now it will be thoroughly tested. My garage door is leaking so I will get it resealed after it is all over.
There is a lovely generator sitting in my garage with no gas in it but my car is full of gas. Teddy is in Utah and likely stuck because the airport will close at some point. I can’t start the generator but there are plenty of strong men in this street. My email today to the neighbors stated that I have a generator with no gas which I will share but not my ONE chocolate bar! Hurricane Ike brought our neighbors together with a fun community vibe and we are still close.
Katniss (pictured above) is our feral kitty visitor. She disappears for weeks and then reappears like the
drifter grifter she is. For the past few days I have been over feeding her like a goose for Christmas dinner. (We used to eat goose in Britain until America’s turkeys invaded). Right now we have the calm before the storm which has a sinister, quiet feel. The temperature has started to drop but it will come down dramatically during the Hurricane.
Harvey is such a happy name, isn’t it? I was communicating with my friend GP Cox, Pacific Paratrooper, who wrote a great post about Jimmy Stewart’s extreme PTSD after serving as a WWII bomber pilot. I saw Jimmy Stewart in London in 1974 when he was starring in the stage play of Harvey.
Well y’alls, we Texans will be grateful for your thoughts and prayers over the next few days. Our power might go out and I will have to write with a pen and paper. Whaaaaat! Just between you and me, I would go buy some gasoline as both the gulf and land oil fields will be affected by this. Perhaps this will bring us all together in a crisis instead of fighting over statues. Now I am going to summon my native ancestors with a ‘no more rain’ dance. 😁
Winter is coming…
Winter is coming… The evil Canadians sent it last night and the temperature dropped by almost 50 degrees. Those beautiful orange leaves, from the last post, are all on the ground.
Despite that, some of the hibiscus are still blooming and the bottle brush and giving us a splash of red.
My friend at Evil Squirrel’s Nest urged us to feed the outside critters with the cold front and this is a cute little Texas Fox Squirrel eating her snacks. I love the way they look slightly different from state to state. Ours aren’t very furry but their tales are really long.
I’m coming down for the snacks. Muchas Gracias, Senora!!
Nom, nom, nom
Old Tampa Bay
Morning view from the Grand Hyatt in Tampa of the old bay. There is something about sunshine, water and palm trees that makes us all feel good. There is a manatee viewing point beside a power plant just down the coast from Tampa. Off we went, excitedly, only to find it is closed in low season. It is weird to think that summer is low season anywhere! So no manatees but we drove down to a lovely marina near Apollo Beach and spotted an osprey in her nest in a palm tree. It seems such a short time ago that ospreys were endangered and now you can see them almost everywhere. That makes my heart sing.
Osprey in her palm tree nest
The marina was small and less grand than many. We had a lovely lunch in the Circles Waterfront Restaurant looking out at this lovely vista, below.
I was fascinated by this boat ‘car park’ at Land’s End Marina. There are also boats at the forefront in dry dock. How many thousands of dollars are parked there, I wonder? 🙂
Do you think he had one? A southern gentleman makes me go weak at the knees, especially rich ones with boats… I am still in Charleston on the Cooper River and I love this shot with the astonishing Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge in the background.
The Custom House reveals how much money was and still is made currently on the waterways of Charleston. Such an impressive building.
I watched with fascination at this sailing club out on the river – who the heck would take out boat #13. I thought sailors were superstitious?
Look at the sailboat on the right…
It isn’t the southern waters unless there is a pelican. I love these friends just chilling together on a hot day.