Beach exercise

Beach exercise

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

On the road again

We have been spending the last three months or so spending time with the family and getting those mundane things of life taken care of.  We are now back on the move on a journey of historical exploration.
Our first stop was Tupelo, MS and the boyhood home of Elvis Presley. The town purchased his childhood home and surrounding land.  They moved the church he attended as a boy along with other period structures to the home site. 

You first visit the small museum displaying many childhood items and memories from family and friends.  It is very clear that this is meant to be a hometown place.  When I left the museum, I had a better understanding of what some of his inspirations and motivations were for his music. His childhood was difficult due to the poverty level they experienced, but he was encouraged by his parents, church and school to pursue his music.  Unfortunately, pictures where not allowed in the museum.

The home were Elvis was born is adjacent to the museum  and contains only two rooms.  It was purchased for $198 dollars.  They lost the house when they could not meet the payments and Elvis's father forged a check by altering the amount to be paid to him and was sent to prison.

Elvis was strongly influenced by the music in his church.  When you visit the church, a reenactment of a Sunday service with Elvis singing is shown with three screens.  It is a very interesting presentation.

There is a reflection chapel nearby for Elvis fans to spend time.

On the top of the hill is a sculpture display by a Dutch artist of Elvis at his peak with a nine year old Elvis in front of him with his first guitar.

If you are an Elvis fan, it is a must see.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Horsing around party

Earlier this month, Victoria celebrated  her sixth birthday with friends and family at a local riding stable. The weather was perfect and the kids all wanted to ride. 

There was birthday cake and presents and games to enjoy.

A good day all around!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Sint Maarten sailing trip

Our last port call of the cruise was Sint (saint)  Maarten.  Another island with generally same post Columbus history.  Fought over by most of the Northern European countries it ended up as a Dutch colony  Today it is an independent country that is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.  The Dutch  occupies the southern part of the island and the northern section is associated with the French.  Sint Maarten is very popular with tourists from the Netherlands.

In this port, we decided to enjoy a coastal sail on a tall ship converted from a Dutch fishing trawler.  Anneke was particularly looking forward to this trip because the ship's captain and some of the crew were Dutch. For many years sailing was our main hobby and it was great to be on this very nice sailing ship for part of our day.

The "Mercedes" spends the winters in the Caribbean and the summers in Northern Europe doing charters.  The conversion to a modified tall ship was very well done and it was a pleasure to be onboard.

We sailed along the coast and enjoyed the views of shore.  One of the attractions here is the airport with sits at the edge of the sea and the large planes arriving from around the world have to come in very low over the ocean. One of  the big attractions is watching planes landing just over the beach. They sometimes get so close that they are blown back across the beach and sometimes into the ocean by the jet blast.  As we sailed close to the beach, there were no large planes landing.  I do not see the fun in it, but here you can see what it looks like.

We also sailed close by the current largest yacht in the world with the former largest yacht nearby.

We had a great time onboard talking with the Capt and crew and just being under sail again.

Before heading back to the ship, we did a quick walk thru the village and even picked up a couple of souvenirs.