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Author Archives: Cal Common

Washington D.C., Day 1, October 19, 2017

 

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Sunrise Falls Church, Virginia 2017

I am writing this from my very comfortable overstuffed chair in our 7th floor apartment in Falls Church, Virginia about 9 miles outside of  Washington, D.C..  With about 1000 square feet of space to enjoy, we are going travel like we love now in our 70’s,  slow and easy in comfortable surroundings.

 

Up at 3:30 in morning yesterday, drove to the Van Nuys Airport Fly away…horrible traffic at 4:45 a.m….and on to the bus into LAX.  Lots of time, on to a full American Airlines flight(5 hours) for a great fare, $290 reach round trip including luggage charge.  Comfortable?  Nope, but about as good as you can expect in regular coach now days.

Off the plane, into our rental car, full size car for $19.00 a day.  Great time to travel to our Capital.

We had some outstanding Vietnamese food last evening within walking distance of our apartment and settled in to watch our Dodgers crush the Cubbies and head to the world series.  Great start for our trip.

 

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Posted by on October 20, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Major Change in Washington D.C. Trip

When I started planning for our October trip to Washington D.C. back in February, I decided to get a Condo outside of D.C. near the train system that takes you into the City.  We have done that many times in Europe with great success.  Example: walk five minutes to the train station, 30 miles in 35 minutes to Salzburg…outstanding!

After I rented the Condo, 1/2 the price of a nice hotel in the Capital, I was happy but, found out getting to the train station was not within our preferred walking distance as advertised, it is about 1.3 miles by bus or 30 minutes walking each way to the train station.  Add to that, the Condo is nine miles outside of D.C. and it was a 55 minute ride each way…many stops.  The evening and weekend train and bus schedules were also quite limited.  Add to that, just read an article that ISIS recently posted that their next attack in the USA would be blowing up the train/subway systems in New York City and Washington, D.C.  Oh S–t!  Now what?

Called Costco Travel who usually has the best prices I have found anywhere for a rental car.  What a joy.  Eight days for a full size car, including all taxes etc. for $149.00 with unlimited  mileage.  Problem solved.

We will drive to a train station with free parking closer to D.C.,  hop a train into the D.C..  Drive to Annapolis, Maryland in 1 hour 40 minutes  to tour the Naval Academy that was going take 3 1/2 hours each way by train.   A trip to Mt. Vernon will take 32 minutes by car each way and 4 hours and 53 minutes by train each way. So many other things to see outside of Washington, D.C. that you must have a car to enjoy.

Learned a lesson.  There isn’t a place in the United States that can match Europe in train transportation.  Will keep that in mind planning our next trips.

 

 

 
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Posted by on October 8, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Planning for Our Fall Trip…We Need Help

We enjoy traveling in the Fall.  The Fall usually gives us cool weather, a far decreased number of tourists and cheaper airfare, hotel rooms as well.  This year however we might have out thought ourselves.  Heavy snow in Idaho, Washington, Montana, California(one death due to blizzard) and now Colorado(18 inches in Steamboat Springs).  Unheard of this early!

snow washington DCWe are hoping that Washington D.C. in a couple weeks will not be covered with snow and ice. We will have to pack for everything.

We have been to Washington D.C. 4-5 times but have barely scratched the surface on what we want to see.  For the first time, we have decided not to rent a car due to parking issues in DC.  Instead we will be using the train and Uber from the airport.  We will have a Condo and hope to take a couple of bus tours like we do in Europe to see things outside of D.C.

With that said, do any our readers have suggestions on “must see” things in Washington D.C. or surrounding areas that we should see?

Finally, some patriots from San Francisco are raising money to ship this giant statue to be put on the Mall.  Guess we will see it if they can raise the money to ship it across country.  For some it will better than the Viet Nam or the WWII  Memorial.

nude in DC

More as we get closer.

 
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Posted by on October 3, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Traveling Gets Tougher…

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We are travelers…we have been, we are and we will continue to be.  With that said, our thoughts go out to the many dead and wounded around the world the last several days;

  1. Somalian immigrant terrorist kills and injuries many in Canada.
  2. African immigrant terrorist kills two and wounds others in France(seems like a weekly thing in France)
  3. American(motive still unknown) kills 50+ and 400+ injured.(Worked for Lockheed Martin as an accountant?, did he have a high security clearance?

We have visited Canada many times.  Our visit to France was just before the multi-terrorist attacks in France.  We have stayed in the Mandalay Bay Hotel recently on the same side of the hotel where the shooter was located.  So these attacks hit very close to us.

One’s first response to this craziness is, “We’re done traveling.”  “We are staying at home.”  In fact, we decided not to go to Europe this year and instead we decided to visit family in Minnesota and in a few days we are heading to Washington, D.C..  (P.S.  Al Qaeda says they are going to blow up the train system in Washington, D.C.)

With that said, we are going to continue to travel.  Will we limit where we go? Unfortunately yes.  Will be careful as possible on our trips?  Yes of course.  We live during sad times.

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on October 2, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Glad I’m Not Taking a Driving Trip

Noticed a couple of things…nothing new…since the first hurricane hit Texas.  We were told that half their oil refineries were shut down.  With in a day, the gas prices in California jumped up 25 cents a gallon.

Now nearly all of the refineries are back working and noticed that gas prices are not dropping.  Want to bet it will take weeks may be months till prices will go back down?  Why can they go up so fast and down so slow?

P.S.  The only thing that never goes down is state gas tax.  Our Governor just approved an 18 cent a gallon tax increase for…that is unclear just yet. LOL.

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Early Fall in the High Desert…Great Job Texas…Planning the Fall Trips

I am sitting in my back garden working on my blogs this morning.  It looks to me that the High Desert is entering Fall early this year.  I had to cut back on my watering early.  Fall flowers and our  animals are moving into my garden early.  I wonder if the same thing will be happening around the rest of the United States?

Irony;  Less deaths in a week from a massive storm affecting millions in Texas than what occurs every weekend in shootings in Chicago.  Great Job Texas!

We are starting our planning for two Fall trips.  One to Washington D.C..  We laughingly say we are going to there to visit the swamp.  In reality we want to see many things we have missed on our earlier trips.  I would be embarrassed if I was in our current congress with only 8% of their constituents saying they are doing their jobs.  Both parties.

Finally our last trip a joyful one.  My Dad’s 100th Birthday party in Minnesota.  He worked hard farming his whole life.  He fought in the second world war and set the example for me(Viet Nam) and my son(Iraq) that you have a responsibility to give back to your country.  Should be a fun party.

More later.

 

 

 
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Posted by on September 7, 2017 in Uncategorized

 

Labor Day, My Back Garden is Overwhelmed with Working Wildlife

Fall is here.  The sky opened up yesterday and this morning is full of wildlife.  The temperatures dropped into the 80’s and wildlife is thrilled.

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2017 in Uncategorized