Painted Desert

Painted Desert

Monday, November 11, 2013

Fall in New England

Well, we're recently returned from Connecticut and Rhode Island, the area where I grew up. Sarah had never been there, so we did touristy things, which was a lot of fun. It was a little past peak for fall color and I didn't take too many pictures of trees, so this post will probably disappoint in that respect. But here is what I did take photos of...

The Newport mansions... these were built during America's Gilded Age as summer "cottages" for the rich. The first below, the Breakers, was built by Cornelius Vanderbilt II and it has 70 rooms. It's a really cool tour so if you are in Newport I would definitely do that.

Here is the Elms. It had very nice grounds we played around on for a while:

Back in CT, we went to the beach... we kept finding slipper shells. I told Sarah that this snail likes to stick together in big stacks to mate with each other. She wanted more info but I had never seen such a stack. But then we found some, alive and sticking to each other. The females are on the bottom and males are on the top. If the females all die, the biggest male will turn into a female.

We went to Mystic Seaport, which is an open-air museum with reproductions of all kinds of things you might have found in a turn-of-the-century fishing or whaling village, and tons of staff to bring it to life. Here, some staff demonstrate how fishermen would go out in a dory to set lines for fish such as cod. We learned many amazing things.

Below-decks on the L.A. Dunton... those cubbies are bunks which are actually 6 feet long, though it doesn't look like it in the photo:

Here's a shot from a preserved house... I thought about photoshopping out the other tourists, who refused to move, but I was too lazy.

A shot from the Seaport's interesting collection of figureheads:

And the Joseph Conrad, another of the tall ships you can go on:

Generic Seaport shot:

Here I am on the deck of the Charles W. Morgan, the world's last remaining wooden whaling vessel, which is currently being restored for a voyage in 2014 (not to hunt whales).

I hadn't been to the Seaport since I was a kid and it was better than I remebered, so if you are in CT or RI you should go.

We also went to a party at my brother's... we had schlepped these costumes from Denver because it was shortly after Halloween and we were invited to come in costume. Of course, we turned out to be the only ones in costume.

And we got to go kayaking on the Mystic River. The next three photos were taken by my father:

Sarah is using a pedal kayak. It was in the 40s that day, so we are wearing wetsuits, but we were very comfortable.

Towards sunset, it became very calm, the water was glassy and lovely. It made me really miss kayaking - I used to have a kayak when I lived here and being out on the water can be addictive. I just wanted to keep paddling and paddling.

And finally, we took a hike in the woods. We arrived past the peak of fall colors and most of the trees had lost their leaves, but it was still really nice.

We DO NOT KNOW what our next adventure will be! The future is a blank page.