Thursday Doors – Vienna, Österreich

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. Visit Norm 2.0 for more doors and details.

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Wien, Österreich – 2007

I have enjoyed riding my bicycle for fun, exercise, and basic transportation since I was a kid. I convinced The Mrs in 2007 that we should take a bicycle trip for our anniversary that year. Grace had not ridden her bike like I had, so we settled on a sag-supported trip along the Danube (Donau) River from Germany to Vienna (Wien). No major changes of elevation on the bike paths, and mostly on paved surfaces.  We had a wonderful trip. Once in Vienna, we surrendered our rental bikes and explored on foot. Back then, I was not a door fueled freak like I am these days, so most of my photos that might even somewhat include a door were either from a panoramic shot of an entire building or block of buildings, or of a detail of architecture adjacent to a door. THIS photo is of a balcony door to a loft apartment I assume, and it just absolutely fascinated me. The photo below is of another loft apartment… I believe these were near the Naschmarkt .

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Couple more gratuitous building photos from Wien… (sans doors I am afraid.)

 

Keep up…

I am just now trying to catch up on all the New Year’s Day postings by all the bloggers I follow. I spent yesterday, New Year’s Day, outside most of the day, so I spent very little time with either the computer or the iPad… It was a sunny and brisk day (in the 40’s), with little wind blowing, so no wind chill to notice.

So a theme from a number of people is Resolutions. I seem to remember making my last NY resolution sometime in the last century. I resolved to never make another resolution ever again. Have pretty much stuck with that one too. Too laid-back otherwise, I guess. Instead, I have mentally made a list of Goals for this year.

Travel and camp and hike more. The Mrs is already planning this for us, so I guess I am cheating… But she is such a great travel planner/organizer! I only get in the way. So, she mentioned Florida, I added, “what about Gulf Shores and then New Orleans?” Goal being objectified and progressing towards execution…. And this also includes planning an overseas trip to explore more of the UK, maybe EU. We already have our train reservations to/from New York, so the framework of the trip is established. Next is our transatlantic ship bookings (I hate flying commercially! HATE it!!!). And then we just have to fill in the little tiny eensy-weensy details from there. You know, who, what, where, when, how. And HOW MUCH??? My one demand for the trip is to visit Charles and Anne at Veddw…the rest, I defer to The Mrs.

Writing. A great number of the bloggers I follow participate in unique Challenges online. I find them interesting, but have not felt compelled to join in (except for Norm’s Thursday Doors – but this is about photos of doors, not a writing challenge). I am setting my own challenge in response therefore. My writing goal is to edit my own historical writings from the past and publish them on line, specifically my senior thesis (about Fr. Samuel Mazzuchelli, OP), and my Master’s Thesis (about the Origins of the Illinois State Police.) I also have some of my (non-history themed) creative writings I kept from my writing classes that I would like to revisit and post…

PostScript. “Keep up…”, the title of this posting comes from (drum roll)… The Mrs! The very first time I EVER saw The (future) Mrs, was at one of her one-woman comedy shows back in 2004. She was talking about how she’ll start talking about one thing, then zoom off in another direction with another thought and so on, and it is important to KEEP UP and not get that glazed and confused look on your face that (some) men get when she is talking to them (Not ME, right dear?).

Lapsang Souchong… oh YEAH!!!

It has been described as:

  • A campfire in your cup! This remarkable tea has a crisp character with the heady aroma of pine and oak wood fire.
  • The Tea of Mystery – The entrancing, smoky character of this tea is achieved by an elaborate process. The hand-picked leaves are smoked over pinewood embers, for a distinct and mysterious cup.
  • Lapsang Souchong, also referred to as smoked tea, is one of the worlds’ oldest and most distinctive black teas.
  • Lapsang souchong is the tea of campers who like to position themselves in the direction of the campfire smoke. It’s intensely smoky and also a favorite of bartenders, thanks to the layer of sultry nuance it adds to the glass.
  • The flavor is very assertive and appeals to those looking for a bold cup of tea. In recent years, Lapsang-Souchong has begun to grow in popularity and has become the favorite tea of many who also appreciate single-malt Scotch whisky and fine cigars. It was once known as a man’s tea but more and more women are drinking it as well.

All that … what more can I say? Oh, yeah ~ I introduced The Mrs to Lapsang Souchong way back in 2004 and it has been our collective Favorite Tea ever since. Now for the sad part of the story.  A couple years ago the flavor intensity of the available LS in our area diminished most dishearteningly (dang that would be a good Boggle word!). We tried some from a nice little tea shop in Champaign, IL, home of the University of Illinois. No go. We tried importing it from England. Nope, still too mild. We bought Stateside via Amazon.  Same thing, no smokey flavor to encircle the palate.

And now the Happy Part of the story!  Just yesterday (Nov. 22nd), the blogger sustainabilitea,  published a post, and in it she mentioned that she worked part-time at a tea shop, SereneTeaz, and gave a link to it. I, of course, clicked the link to check it out, and they sell Lapsang Souchong tea!  I emailed the tea shop and inquired about the intensity of their LS. I had a reply within an hour, and based on that reply, I placed an order right away.

Here is what hooked me, “It’s very strong, you can actually use it as a marinade if you wanted to cook with it. If you’re looking for a touch of smoke try Russian Caravan. Our lapsang  is very smokey. It stays with you after drinking it. Hope this helps.”

Happier part ~ The LS tea parcel arrived via FedEx THIS MORNING!! As a disclaimer, I will confess that both SereneTeaz and I are located in Illinois, but STILL!!!!!!

Happiest part ~ I opened that parcel of LS tea and took a good loong whiff, then insisted The Mrs do the same. Joint verdict…. good strong fragrance! I proceeded to make a cup for myself to try out the flavor, but none for The Mrs cuz she is caffeine sensitive and does not drink anything with caffeine after 11 or so in the morning.  (Not an issue for me…Caffeine+ is my blood type…) I took a sip after 4 minutes of brewing and insisted The Mrs try it as well. OH YEAH! This is the Lapsang Souchong we have been missing! Thanks Janet and Serene Teaz!!!

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Only 2 regrets about this picture: First, my camera phone is not that great so pic is a bit fuzzy. Second, I wish I had a SMELL-aphone so you could enjoy the incredible fragrance of this tea!!!

Autumn Chores

Because of all the very very busy activities in my life the past couple months, many of my Summer Chores are now transmogrifying into Autumn Chores. Unfortunately, my ACs are now at the front of the queue…

So this weekend, The Mrs & I lowered the mast on the “Miss Mollie” (The Mrs serving as the Winch Wench and yers trooly as the Mast Muscler), removed mast/boom, and then with the assistance of my Mother-In-Law, putted over to the sailboat ramp and removed the boat from the water.

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View of CWLP Power Plant as we left the dock, and the historic Last Boat Ride of the year.

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MIL enjoying the ride…

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The Mrs & MIL waiting for me to back the boat trailer into water to conclude the Boat Removal Ceremony… No one fell in, no one got wet, and we got the boat on the trailer with minimal hassle!!! WooHoo.

The last task involving the Autumn boat chore was to Power Wash all the lake schmutz that accumulated on the hull throughout the summer. I accomplished this yesterday…

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Not sure what Chores are awaiting me today, but I am certain it will be fun, fun, fun….  oh yeah?

Thursday Doors – Starved Rock

I did not post a Thursday Doors last week because The Mrs & I were on a mini-vacation in northern Illinois and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, while my computer was still at home relaxing. My camera, on the other hand, was busy, busy, busy…

We drove to Starved Rock State Park in LaSalle County on Tuesday last week. The Park is located on the banks of the Illinois River near Utica and Oglesby, Illinois. The main draw for most people is the hiking… there are approximately 13 miles of hiking trails throughout the park. The architectural centerpiece is what the DNR website describes as, “… the 1930s-era stone and log Starved Rock Lodge offers luxury lodging, cabin rooms, and fine dining .” The Lodge was constructed by the CCC (Civilian Conservaton Corps) during the Great Depression. My first door this week is the main entrance.

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On the other side of the building, almost directly opposite the main door, is the outside entry to the Back Door Lounge, a small indoor/outdoor bar and grill.

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We stayed in one of the cabins near the main lodge for two nights. Although the doors to the cabins are not overwhelmingly intriguing, the housekeeping staff do an incredible job of keeping the glass clean!!!

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My final door this week is of a door that I assume is an emergency exit from the Lodge, as there in no door knob… or maybe it is a Jedi Only entrance…

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The Illinois Department of Natural Resources estimates that well over 2.5 million people will visit Starved Rock in 2016…

Thursday Doors is a weekly feature allowing door lovers to come together to admire and share their favorite door photos from around the world. It is courtesy of Norm 2.0

Impending Bloom!!!

Last week, while taking my morning coffee down at the dock, I noticed 2 things (actually, maybe more than 2, but only 2 that are noteworthy). One of the purple lilac bushes was just starting to re-bloom (for the third time this year!). And the chrysanthemum bush closest to the water was just about to bloom… see, Impending Bloom!

 

This past week, The Mrs and I took a mini-vacation to celebrate our 10 year anniversary. We spent 2 nights and 3 days at Starved Rock State Park  outside Oglesby,  Illinois. We hiked, and we ate, and we drove a bit, and hiked some more. And ate more… Then we drove to St. Ignace, Michigan and took the ferry to Mackinac Island, MI. We stayed at a B&B on the island for 3 nights and 4 days. We hiked, and we ate, and we rode bikes a bit, and hiked some more. And ate MORE…Then we drove back home to Springfield, Illinois in 2 days, getting back about 3-ish yesterday afternoon.

The really exciting parts about all this? Firstly, I got lots of pictures of some really great doors that I will be posting for Thursday Doors!! And secondly, I will make three different postings this week to cover the three phases of our trip… In between these postings this week I may hike a bit, and eat a bit… you know the routine  🙂

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My Foto Friday

I blame this posting on Norm…  He sponsors a weekly feature called “Thursday Doors”, which results in lots of pictures of doors being posted by bloggers worldwide every week. I started participating a few weeks ago. So… while sorting through my picture files yesterday for some door pics, I saw a few cool non-door pics that I felt compelled to share. And, not one to let a captive audience go un-awed, I decided to add just a couple more pics & related thoughts…

Sunrise this morning…

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Pre-breakfast… (1.5 units of insulin)…

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From my photo archives…

Guggenheim Museum, NYC – 2015

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Guggenheim #2

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I found the architecture and people to be more interesting “art” than the exhibits…

Guggenheim #3

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One exhibit I liked…

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Grace finds herself in NYC…

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Welsh caterpillar

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Welsh, ummmm…. whatever…

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Me all dressed up going out on the town…

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