A Travellerspoint blog

2011 - H & A WORLD CRUISE - BETHLEHEM


View 2011 H&A - RED SEA TO ATHENS on hasbeen's travel map.

WE EXIT THE SUEZ CANAL & TURN RIGHT FOR ASHOD IN ISREAL INSTEAD OF ALEXANDRIA IN EGYPT.

SOME PASSENGERS FELT THAT SKIPPING EGYPT IN FAVOUR OF ISRAEL WAS A BIT LIKE JUMPING OUT OF THE FRYING PAN INTO THE FIRE & WERE APPREHENSIVE FOR THIS & OTHER REASONS ON GOING ASHORE HERE.

BUT WE ARE HERE, SO I AM OFF TO BETHLEHEM VIA ..

.....JERUSALEM.....

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THERE WAS A TOUR OFFERED TO THE DEAD SEA, JERUSALEM WITH A GLIMPSE OF BETHLEHEM OR BETHLEHEM WITH A GLIMPSE OF JERUSALEM.

I CHOSE THE LATTER.

LEAVING ASHOD,WE HEAD EAST....

IF THIS EVER WAS DESERT IT IS VERY LUSH NOW. IRRIGATED BY WATER FROM THE JORDAN RIVER WHICH MUST BE JUST A TRICKLE BY NOW.

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A RUSSIAN OR GREEK ORTHODOX CHURCH...

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WE SKIRT JERUSALEM & REACH THE WALL SURROUNDING BETHLEHEM.

BETHLEHEM!

CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?

THERE IS A WALL AROUND BETHLEHEM.

BETHLEHEM!

BIRTH PLACE OF JESUS CHRIST, THAT BETHLEHEM.

I WAS ASTONISHED.

STILL AM ASTONISHED.

OUTSIDE THE WALL WE GO INTO A GIFT SHOP SELLING - NO NEED TO SAY..

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I AM IN & OUT IN A FLASH.

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OUTSIDE THIS IS A VIEW ACROSS WHAT I PRESUME TO BE BETHLEHEM, WITH WALLS ON EITHER SIDE..

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THE WALL IS COVERED WITH GRAFITTI & SLOGANS...

BARBARA - TAKING IN THE VIEW...LOOKS LIKE SHE BOUGHT SOMETHING IN THE GIFT SHOP...

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WHILE SHEPHERDS WATCH THE FLOCKS - BY DAY!
...
I KNEW THERE WAS A WALL IN ISRAEL SEPARATING THE ISRAELITES & PALESTINIANS BUT DID NOT REALISE IT IS NOT ONE WALL, BUT SEVERAL, ENCLOSING PALESTINIAN ENCLAVES.

WE SWITCH GUIDES - ISRAELI TO PALESTINIAN. AS WE PASS THROUGH THE WALL, GUARDS WITH MACHINE GUNS GET ON BOARD THE BUS. SOME IDIOT HAD TO BE TOLD NOT TO TAKE THEIR PHOTO.

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INSIDE BETHLEHEM NOW.. CHURCHES.. MOSQUES..

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THE BELL ON THE CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY.

SCHOOL PARTIES ALL AROUND.

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WE ARE HERDED INTO THE CHURCH OF THE NATIVITY.

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INCHING FORWARD IN THE GLOOM. THEN DOWN A WINDING STAIRCASE INTO THE GROTTO OF THE NATIVITY.
THE ELDERLY EDNA CLUTCHING ON TO ME LIKE A LIMPET.

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AND - HERE WE ARE - THE ACTUAL SPOT WHERE, TRADITION HAS IT, CHRIST WAS BORN.

NOT A MANGER IN AN INN - BUT IN A CAVE UNDER A CHURCH.

WE SHUFFLE THROUGH AT ABOUT ONE A MINUTE & UP THE OTHER SIDE..

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FOR A BRIEF TALK...

AND INTO THE MORE MODERN, ADJOINING , CATHOLIC CHURCH OF ST. CATHERINE - OF CATHERINE WHEEL FAME, I THINK.

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AND OUT INTO THE AIR WHERE I GET A SNACK FROM A STREET VENDOR...SOMETHING SWEET.

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THEN WE WEND OUR WAY BACK TO THE GATE IN THE WALL FOR MORE SECURITY CHECKING OUR BUS...& SWITCH GUIDES AGAIN

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WE HEAD BACK TOWARDS JERUSALEM...

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THESE ARE THE GUYS WITH MACHINE GUNS. ACTUALLY - THE GUY WAS A GIRL....

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THE DOME OF THE ROCK....

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OLD JERUSALEM...

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NEW JERUSALEM

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THE GOOD LUCK CAR RENTAL PLACE

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AFTER LUNCH WE SIT FOR A SERMON FROM OUR ISRAELI GUIDE NOW, WITH THE MOUNT OF OLIVES BEHIND US.

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BACK IN THE BUS FOR A RIDE TO THE GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE & TWO THOUSAND YEAR OLD OLIVE TREES..

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AND INTO THE CHURCH OF ALL NATIONS NEXT DOOR..

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& THROUGH THE GARDENS AGAIN TO YET ANOTHER CHURCH..

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WE PASS THE PARLIAMENT OF ISREAL - THE KNESSET

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ON OUR WAY BACK TO THE COAST OUR GUIDE WAS TALKING ABOUT SOMETHING OR OTHER WHEN SHE BECAME QUITE HYSTERICAL.

NO FILMING!!

NO FILMING!

LITERALLY SCREAMING AT THE PASSENGER IN FRONT OF ME TO PUT HIS CAMERA DOWN..

SHE HAD SEEN HIM FILMING SOME ATTACK HELICOPTERS HEADING IN FORMATION TOWARDS US.

THEY TAKE THEIR SECURITY VERY SERIOUSLY INDEED HERE & I WISHED THAT PASSENGER HAD BEEN ON ANOTHER BUS. TRYING TO GET US ALL ARRESTED OR SHOT

QUITE A DAY & I AM GLAD TO HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY OF VISITING HERE.

Posted by hasbeen 02:20 Archived in Israel Comments (0)

2011 - H & A WORLD CRUISE - EPHESUS


View 2011 H&A - RED SEA TO ATHENS on hasbeen's travel map.

THE SUN COMIMG UP ON KUSADASI - TURKEY

TRAVEL BOOKS DO NOT GIVE VERY GOOD REVIEWS OF KUSADASI. I DON’T KNOW WHY. I QUITE LIKED IT.

SHOPKEEPERS TRY SELLING THEIR CARPETS BUT IN A FRIENDLY WAY & PASS ME ON TO THEIR NEIGHBOUR WHEN THEY KNOW I WILL NOT BUY.

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I LEAVE THE SHIP WITH THE INTENTION OF WALKING TO THIS ISLAND WITH A CASTLE..

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ROSE & JANE FROM THE SHIP HAVE ALSO REACHED THE CASTLE....

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JANE AND I SPENT A LOT OF TIME CHATTING ON THE PROMENADE DECK ABOUT NOTHING IN PARTICULAR.
SHE IS ALSO FROM ONTARIO & IT SEEMS SHE TOOK THE ROUND THE WORLD CRUISE ON A WHIM & HAS BEEN WANTING TO GET OFF SINCE THE SECOND DAY.

TOO BAD - SHE HAS OVER A MONTH TO GO.

A NICE LADY WHO SHOULD READ ITINERARIES.

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THERE IS SOME LOVELY COASTLINE NEARBY.....

I FORGET THE STORY BUT THERE ARE THESE PEBBLE LIKE OBJECTS EMBEDDED IN THE GROUND ALL AROUND HERE.

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I TAKE TEA AT THE BEACH & CHAT TO A WAITER ABOUT HIS COUSIN WHO LIVES IN TORONTO, THEN TAKE A BUS BACK TO TOWN & A WALK UP THROUGH THE BACK STREETS.

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I ASKED THIS LADY IF IT WAS OK TO TAKE HER PHOTO & ONLY AFTER I HAD CLICKED THE SHUTTER DID SHE ASK FOR CASH.

EASY MONEY.

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SOME NICE FLOWERS & OLD BUILDINGS.

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NOBODY TAKING ANY NOTICE OF ME UNTIL SOME SCHOOL GIRLS TRIED TO ENTICE ME UP AN EXTREMELY STEEP STREET. SAYING - ‘ATATURK’ & BECKONONG ME UP THE HILL.
I HAD NO IDEA WHAT THEY WERE UP TO & THE HILL WAS VERY STEEP SO I WENT DOWN HILL INSTEAD.

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YOU CAN SEE THE SHIP BETWEEN THE HOUSES.

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I SPENT SOME TIME SITTING WITH BAKI ( WHO COINCIDENTALLY, IS TURKISH BUT LIVES IN HAWAII . I MET HER AROUND DAY FIVE ON BOARD BUT HAVE BARELY SEEN HER SINCE ) ON DECK TAKING PHOTOS OF THE KITES FLYING AROUND THIS STATUE ON THE HILL.
IT’S THEN I REALISED WHAT THE GIRLS WANTED TO SHOW ME. THE STATUE OF ATATURK.

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I HAVE BEEN WAITING AROUND FOR MY TOUR TO START.

AND HERE WE ARE AT EPHESUS WHERE THERE IS MORE ROMAN STUFF THAN IN ROME...VERY IMPRESSIVE, ESPECIALLY AT NIGHT..

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CAMILLA & JIM WHO WERE NOT A COUPLE WHEN THEY BOARDED BUT MAY BE NOW. I NEVER DID WORK THAT ONE OUT.

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SOME ANCIENT TOILETS..

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HARD TO SEE BUT THIS IS A STRING BAND WAITING TO PLAY A CONCERT FOR ANOTHER TOUR GROUP FROM MY SHIP...THAT MUST HAVE BEEN A BIT SPECIAL.

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WE GET TWO DAYS HERE - A RARE OCCURRENCE & ESPECIALLY SO SINCE IT IS NOT A CHANGE OVER PORT.

Posted by hasbeen 02:10 Archived in Turkey Comments (0)

2011 - H & A WORLD CRUISE - TURKEY'S ANCIENT CITIES

PRIENE MILETUS & DIDYMA

STILL IN KUSADASI TURKEY

A BUS RIDE TODAY TO THREE ANCIENT TURKISH CITIES THAT ARE ROMAN.

I WILL BE IN TURKEY IN SEPTEMBER 2014 & HOPE THERE WILL BE TURKISH THINGS TO DELIGHT IN THERE.

A SAUSAGE EGG McMUFFIN FOR BREAKFAST - TEMPTING, BUT NO, PLENTY TO EAT ON BOARD.

ALTHOUGH I DID TRY SOME POMEGRANATE JUICE AT ONE STOP. VERY SHARP TASTING.

I GAVE THE AUSSIE A TASTE & HE ALMOST SPAT IT OUT.

WON'T BE MISSING HIM WHEN I GET OFF.

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ON THE WAY UP TO PRIENE, A SHEPHERD WATCHING OVER HIS FLOCK....

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TEACHERS WATCHING OVER THEIR FLOCK...

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THE SMALLEST TURTLE I HAVE EVER SEEN...

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MARTHA - TAKING IN THE SCENERY..

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ALWAYS A SATELITE DISH.....

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OLD FOSSILS ( MARTHA EXCEPTED ) AMONG THE OLD RUINS...

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TURKEY WAS A PLEASANT SURPRISE. WONDERFUL WEATHER TOO.

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AND THE BAND PLAY ME OUT FOR THE FINAL TIME.

ATHENS TOMORROW & TIME TO GET OFF & GO HOME..

Posted by hasbeen 02:00 Archived in Turkey Comments (0)

2011 - H & A WORLD CRUISE - ATHENS & HOME

THE END


View 2011 H&A - RED SEA TO ATHENS on hasbeen's travel map.

FINAL MORNING COFFEE WITH ROSE, VLADKA & CAROLIN...

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EARLY MORNING VIEW OF PIREAUS... ATHENS PORT

AND MY FINAL VIEW OF THE MS AMSTERDAM...

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AS THERE WERE ONLY A FEW PEOPLE GETTING OFF HERE IT WAS AN EASY DISEMBARKATION AND A SHORT HOP TO THE HOTEL WITH A GREAT POOL ON THE ROOF & A VIEW OF THE PARTHENON ATOP THE ACROPOLIS.

AND ANOTHER VIEW ACROSS ATHENS

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THERE IS TIME FOR A TOUR AROUND ATHENS..

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PRESUMABLY FAKE DESIGNER BAGS WHOSE SELLER DISAPPEARED SHARPISH WHEN THE COPS CAME TOWARDS HIM.

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ATHENS IS NOT AN EASY PLACE TO TAKE PHOTOS. CRANES & TELEPHONE WIRES ALL OVER THE PLACE. & THE CITY HAS WAY TOO MUCH GRAFFITI..

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A NICE RAINBOW NEAR THE EXCELLENT MUSEUM WHICH COULD TAKE A WEEK TO VIEW PROPERLY. A GREAT PLACE TO PUT THE STOLEN ELGIN MARBLES & IT'S ABOUT TIME THE BRITS GAVE THEM BACK & STOP BEING SO EMBARRASSING.

THERE IS A GLASS FLOOR OUTSIDE THE MUSEUM & THIS IS WHAT IS UNDERNEATH..

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THE GLASS FLOOR AGAIN....

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A GIRL DANCING ON THE STREET...

I HAD A MEAL NEXT TO THE STARBUCKS SINCE IT WAS CLOSE TO THE HOTEL & HALFWAY THROUGH EATING I REALISED I WAS IN GREECE EATING PIZZA AND DRINKING GRAPPA. BOTH ITALIAN.

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AND THE FLIGHT HOME OVER THE ALPS TO GERMANY

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NEARLY HOME - THE BIG O IN MONTREAL...

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AND SO ENDS MY TRIP.

MET LOTS OF PEOPLE, SOME NICE & SOME NOT SO NICE.

STILL IN CONTACT WITH SOME & FOUR OF WHOM I HAVE MET WITH SINCE - MARTHA IN FLORIDA, BAKI IN HAWAII & BJ & JACK IN CHARLESTON.

IT WAS HALF WAY ROUND THE WORLD ON THE SHIP & THE REST BY PLANE.

IT ALSO COMPLETES AN AROUND THE WORLD CRUISE IF I CONNECT ALL THE CRUISES I HAVE DONE.

WHAT NEXT?

Posted by hasbeen 01:50 Archived in Greece Comments (0)

2011 - BUS TOUR - YELLOWSTONE - GETTING THERE

RAPID CITY TO THE CONTINENTAL DIVIDE


View 2011 YELLOWSTONE on hasbeen's travel map.

YELLOWSTONE PARK

JUST GETTING TO YELLOWSTONE WAS AN ADVENTURE IN ITSELF.

IT STARTED IN ......

RAPID CITY - SOUTH DAKOKA

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THIS IS WHERE IT GETS IN NAME FROM

FAIRLY TAME NOW BUT THE STORY IS THAT AT IT'S WORSE, IT TOOK OUT A LOT OF HOUSES WHEN IT BURST IT'S BANKS.

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RAPID CITY HAS A LOT, OF THESE STATUES OF PRESIDENTS ON STREET CORNERS ALL OVER TOWN

AND MOUNT RUSHMORE IS CLOSE BY

HERE IT IS AT NIGHT

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I FIND ROCK FORMATIONS FASCINATING SO I HAD TO HAVE A TOUR TO THE BADLANDS.
JUST ME, A GUY FROM NEW YORK WHO AS ON HIS WAY TO A CATTLE DRIVE & A COUPLE FORM BERGEN, NORWAY. I WILL BE TERE IN 2014 - I WONDER IF WE WILL BUMP INTO EACH OTHER. SHOULD HAVE GOT A CONTACT ADDRESS.

THIS HAWK WAS ON THE WAY

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AND A GHOST TOWN...

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AND INTO THE BADLANDS....

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NO - NOW WE ARE INTO THE BADLANDS.....

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THE GROUP.....

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A VISIT TO THE CRAZY HORSE MONUMENT. WONDER IF IT WILL EVER GET FINISHED. THE PEOPLE INVOLVED REFUSE GOVERNMENT HELP.

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AND NOW MOUNT RUSHMORE DURING THE DAY...

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WE ARE HEADING TO CUSTER'S LAST STAND & SAW THIS HEADLINE... THE GUYS THOUGHT IT PRETTY FUNNY. THE LADIES NOT SO MUCH. WELL, NOT AT ALL IF I AM HONEST.

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THE YELLOWSTONE TOUR IT'S SELF IS STARTING NOW. A FULL BUS LOAD OF PEOPLE. 90 PECENT AMERICANS ENJOYING THEIR COUNTRY...

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THIS IS THE TOWER - DEVILS MAYBE - IN SOME FILM, I FORGET WHICH. WAY OFF IN THE DISTANCE

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A HUGE COAL MINE

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BUFFALO BILLS BAR...

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CUSTER'S LAST STAND.

OUR TOUR WAS TOO RUSHED HERE. I COULD HAVE DONE WITH AN EXTRA HOUR OR TWO..

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BUFFALO BILLS BOYHOOD HOME

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AND SOME GREAT ART IN HIS EXCELLENT MUSEUM..

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GREAT BUTTERFLIES FLITTING ABOUT A BUSH OUTSIDE THE MUSEUM....

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AND WE REACH THE DIVIDE WHERE THE WATER IN THIS LITTLE POND CAN GO IN EITHER DIRECTION.

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Posted by hasbeen 11:20 Archived in USA Comments (0)

2011 - BUS TOUR - YELLOWSTONE

ALL YELLOWSTONE - AND A LITTLE VIDEO RIGHT AT THE END.


View 2011 YELLOWSTONE on hasbeen's travel map.

I MAKE NO APOLOGIES FOR THE NUMBER OF PHOTOS. THERE COULD EASILY HAVE BEEN THREE TIMES AS MANY.

Y E L L O W S T O N E

IT REALLY IS..

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A BIRTHDAY

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MAKE THE VIDEO FULL SCREEN & SIT BACK. WAY, WAY BACK

Posted by hasbeen 11:20 Archived in USA Tagged video Comments (0)

2011 - BUS TOUR - YELLOWSTONE - GETTING AWAY

YELLOWSTONE TO SALT LAKE CITY


View 2011 YELLOWSTONE on hasbeen's travel map.

I TOOK THIS BUS TOUR JUST BECAUSE IT WAS GOING TO SPEND THREE DAYS IN YELLOWSTONE, BUT THE LEAD IN TO THE PARK WAS GREAT & THE EXIT WAS THE SAME.

HEADING TO THE GREAT SALT LAKE


BUT DON'T EXPECT TO SEE THE LAKE.

I DIDN'T.

I SHOULD HAVE PLANNED BETTER & ADDED A FEW DAYS AT THE END.

THE TETONS

THIS IS A LAKE, BUT NOT THE SALT LAKE.

THIS ONE IS IN THE TETONS.

NOW WHY DID THEY CALL IT THE TETONS? WELL, YOU ARE JUST GOING TO HAVE TO LOOK IT UP, COS THIS IS A FAMILY SHOW.

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THE GROUP, BUT WHERE WAS HEERA & NIMI? I THINK I CAN JUST MAKE OUT NIMI, IN THE SHADE, OVER ON THE LEFT.

COME ON LADIES. SHAKE A LEG & GET INTO THE SUN.

THERE NOW - THAT'S BETTER.

FRONT & CENTER....

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THOSE WERE IN & AROUND THIS LOVELY LITTLE CHURCH

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THE SNAKE

WE ARE SCHEDULED A RAFT RIDE DOWN THE SNAKE RIVER.

I WAS LOOKING FORWARD TO IT, BUT NOW I AM NOT SO SURE.

THIS IS WHERE WE GOT IN THE RUBBER RAFT....

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LET'S HOPE HE IS THAT HIGHLY SKILLED PERSON!

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ANYONE SEE THE CLINT EASTWOOD MOVIE, THE OUTLAW JOSE WALES?
THERE WAS A FERRY LIKE THIS IN IT.
THE FERRY MAN USES THE ROPE TO HAUL THE FERRY ACROSS THE RIVER.

JOSE SHOOTS THE ROPE.

GREAT FILM.

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WE MADE IT. PHEWW!

NOT IN THE LEAST BIT SCARY. HONEST!

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I GUESS WE GO THIS WAY NOW...

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CHURCH TIME IN JACKSON HOLE - MAKE SURE YOU CHECK YOUR GUN AT THE DOOR.

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NOT A BAD HOTEL. ALL THE ACCOMMODATION ON THIS TRIP WAS GREAT.

YOU LEAVE YOUR BAGS OUTSIDE THE ROOM IN THE MORNING & GO FOR THE DAYS TOUR. WHEN YOU GET TO THE NEXT HOTEL, YOUR BAGS ARE IN THE ROOM

MAGIC -

BUT I STILL PREFER A CRUISE AS A WAY OF TRAVELING. GET TO UNPACK YOUR SUITCASE, & BUSES SOMETIMES MAKE ME 'WOBBLY'. WHEREAS I NEVER HAVE BEEN SEASICK.

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I THINK THIS IS AT THE OREGON TRAIL MUSEUM...

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JUST FOLLOW THE TRACKS TO SALT LAKE CITY

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THESE TO WERE HAPPY TO TELL ME ABOUT THEIR COMMUNITY & VERY INTERESTING IT IS TOO.
IF I UNDERSTOOD THEM CORRECTLY, JESUS CHRIST VISITED THE UNITED STATES.
I MUST LOOK THAT ONE UP.

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I DID NOT GET TO SEE THE MORMON TABERNACLE CHOIR BUT I DID GET A LISTEN TO THE ORGAN BEING PLAYED.

WHAT A FABULOUS SOUND.

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GOODBYE TO THE LADIES - SAFE TRIP HOME

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ENOUGH TIME FOR A LOOK AT THE WONDERFUL ART INSIDE SALT LAKE CITY AIRPORT

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AND NO - NEVER DID SEE THE LAKE...TOO BAD.

Posted by hasbeen 11:20 Archived in USA Comments (0)

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