Monday, May 30

Yellowstone Reflections


When we were in Yellowstone we were most excited by the bears, whether black...



...or grizzly.



However, now when I look back...



...it's the glorious landscape....



...that fills my dreams.

Friday, May 27

America 2011 - Yellowstone Bison


Bison (also known as buffalo) are one of Yellowstone's success stories. After nearly dying out they are to be found in quite high numbers.



They seem to be wonderfully stoic creatures.



This one wasn't even upset by 'Old Faithful' erupting...



...nor was her baby!



ZZZZZZ...


Bison babies are VERY cute.



Traffic in the park is often disrupted by 'bison jams'. They are more than happy to block the traffic.

America 2011 - The Road to Yellowstone


We drove out from Jackson Hole airport and had our first view of the Grand Tetons.



Rather overshadowed by Yellowstone, the Grand Tetons are in the middle of a national park.



There wasn't much traffic on the road...



...but as we entered Yellowstone there was LOTS of snow...



....LOTS & LOTS!



We were worried that we wouldn't see any wildlife at all!

Thursday, May 26

America 2011 - Jackson Hole


Adam and I flew into Jackson Hole and then drove to Yellowstone from there. I haven't landed in an airport surrounded by so many mountains since we were in Queenstown.

America 2011 - Oh dear...


How could one decline such a delightful invitation!

America 2011 - Mountains


I love mountains...the ones near Huw and Anastasia are especially beautiful.

America 2011 - Action Dog

Blimey...I'm not sure what Boots would make of this...

America 2011 - Will it ever end?


Lord have mercy!

America 2011 - Big Cat Sanctuary


It makes me VERY ANGRY that some people keep big cats as pets. I'm glad that the Wild Animal Sanctuary we visited is rescuing & taking care of them.

America 2011 - Boulder

I left St Louis for Denver. Our good friends Huw & Anastasia have just moved to Boulder, the Austin of Colorado.

Monday, May 23

America 2011 - Arthur


While I was staying in Mattoon, Annie & I headed off to Arthur...



...where there's still a proper 'Main St' (called Main St of course).

America 2011 - Chicago Architecture Boat Tour


The Chicago Architecture Foundation run fabulous tours around the city. We went on the boat tour. The tour guide was very funny, as well as knowing his stuff backwards. Next time I'm in Chicago I'd like to go on one of the walking tours.

America 2011 - The Field Museum


The Sue who lives in The Field Museum is a bit scarier than the ones in Eynsham.

America 2011 - Art Institute of Chicago


We had a glorious day at the Art Institute. I'm not sure what I can post without breaching copyright, so I'll just tempt you with a bit of architecture.

Sunday, May 22

America 2011 - Cahokia Mounds


In The Field Museum I came across an exhibit about the mound building Native American culture that flourished in what is now the Midwester, Eastern & Southeastern United States from approximately 800 CE to 1500 CD.



One of the most famous sites is the Cahokia Mounds, which Annie, Ziggy and I took in on the way to St Louis.



It's an astonishing place which originally had 120 mounds (there are 80 today) and a woodhenge.



(The mounds are obviously very tempting in the Winter!)


The Central Focus of the city is Monk's Mound, which is 92 ft high and covers just under 14 acres. It's the largest man-made mound North of Mexico.



It was horribly hot, so I didn't explore the sight as much as I'd have liked, but I did make it to the top of Monk's Mound.

America 2011 - Chicago 29th Floor


Thanks to the generosity of our friends Annie & Virginia...



...our accommodation in Chicago was...



...a 29th floor...



...condominium. The view was amazing during the day...



...but at night...


...it was...


...absolutely...


...A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!

Sunday, May 1