The year in pictures - 2001 - part 2
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Time does fly 

Summer at the beach:  I wrote about it and even then it was only in the form of a sketch of memories.  

I remember the air shows, fireworks, and my brother visiting from Norway.  

We rode the waves and stood in awe as jets thundered overhead.  The blue angels were in town, and as a preliminary to their main show, some of them participated in a Friday night show that lit up the sky.  For me the greatest part was walking across the parking area as the jets were landing.  I doubt that I will ever again be able to stand in the approach path as jets scream only a hundred feet overhead.  

At the end of the week we drove north to my parents home in Traverse City, and celebrated my 50th birthday on their deck.  

Most days I still feel 21, but my body at times does not.

Austria:   The trip started out as one of those company things that you earn if you sell a bazillion dollars worth of their goods.  However, because of the suggestion of another diarist ~karin we found a discount airline that services Europe from England.  When plans to visit my brother in Norway did not work out, Salzburg Austria came to the fore of our travel plans.  

A fabulous internet "special" allowed us to stay at a hotel on the mountain overlooking Salzburg.  It truly deserves it's place among the "Small Luxury Hotels of the World."  The first image is the view from our balcony, the second from our first night's candle light dinner.  The Hotel Kobenzl was truly a five star experience.  Mrs, the inveterate traveler, suggested that I would like Salzburg, and found the "stress relief" special at the hotel.

For several days we toured the countryside and visited the city of Altstat (churches below), walked through Salzburg at night, and wandered through the halls of the Eagle's Nest, that you can read about here.

We spent 4 days in Austria and then five more in England before heading home.  During that time my digital camera did all that I thought it would, saving image after image, without a single penny spent on film.  All in all I took over 600 photographs, which did necessitate lugging along the laptop so that I could download images as I filled up the storage media.  

England:   One of the other things that I was able to discover during this trip was how well the camera performed in low light, or almost no light conditions.  

For whatever reason, I seemed to see an abundance of signs that said "no photography," and perhaps you can imagine how pleased I was to get a good shot of the Crown Jewels, along with the cast of the Lion King, below.

Legend has it that the monarchy will continue only if there are ravens at the Tower of London.  Several are kept there, their wings clipped to insure that they stay about the royal grounds. 

Company trips really can be done right, and this one was no exception.  We ate in the dining hall of Henry the Eighth, toured Stonehenge, shopped at Harrods, did the Windsor Castle thing,  rode the tube (Underground) and visited the ancient Roman city of Bath. 

All in all, a truly great time was had by the two of us, which was our first trip sans kids in about ten years.

This was my second trip to England, and although I thought the palatial digs in Austria were far better than the London Hilton, I'd like to go back, only this time to wander the countryside and tour Scotland and Ireland as well.  


To be Continued