134/376 - More of Glacier Bay II

Johns Hopkins Glacier
“Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So... get on your way.”~Dr. Seuss
Another post with glaciers and mountains. This really was the highlight of our trip. It was more gorgeous than I ever expected. Moreover, I found out that there are an average of 50 sunny days per year in this area and we happened to hit upon one of them! How cool is that?

The picture above is of the Johns Hopkins glacier. After we had been there for a little while the park ranger pointed out that our view was deceptive. Once we understood that we were 5 miles away from the glacier it made it all the more impressive.

Mt. Cooper

This was the view just to the left of Johns Hopkins. I'm pretty sure it's Mt. Cooper.

Glacier Bay Afternoon II

Finally, this is one of the sights as were were heading out of the bay. Again, it was absolutely awe inspiring. I will return at some point in my future.

I am only including a couple of pictures here on the blog. If you want to see a few more check out my flickr stream. Flickr has changed things a bit so supposedly if you click on an individual picture you will get a larger view of it. Then if you click it again you can see it "on black" which is my favorite way of seeing pictures. Give it a try! My next post will be a few shots I got in Sitka, Alaska.

133/376 - Margerie Glacier

Margerie Glacier
“Exploration is really the essence of the human spirit.”     ~Frank Borman
Our ship sat in front of this glacier for close to two hours. We got to drink coffee/hot chocolate and take pictures to our hearts content. We watched the glacier calve (shed chunks of ice) several times with the grandest one as we were about to leave. This was one of the two highlights of this trip. As we went through Europe in 2008  I was regularly in awe of the things that man can build. On this trip, however, I was in constant awe of God and the great beauty he has bestowed upon us.

132/376 - More of Glacier Bay

Glacier Bay VI
“Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in where nature may heal and cheer and give strength to the body and soul.”     ~John Muir
Here are more of the slow ride to the Margerie Glacier. I've chosen to not bore you with lots more so if you are still interested, check out my flickr account.

By the way the John Muir quotes are because in 1879 he explored the area, helped found the Sierra Club and was a naturalist extraordinaire. He was quoted extensively during our trek through Glacier Bay.

Glacier Bay V

131/376 - Glacier Bay (first set)

Glacier Bay I
“The mountains are calling and I must go.”     ~John Muir
On Monday morning, about 7am, we entered Glacier Bay National Park. We picked up a couple of Park Rangers who acted as guides for the day and then slowly made our way into the bay. These 3 pictures are some of the sights we saw as we moved northward towards the Margerie Glacier.

Glacier Bay III

Glacier Bay II

130/376 - Gastineau Channel from Mt. Roberts

Juneau - Gastineau Channel
“We're so busy watching out for what's just ahead of us that we don't take time to enjoy where we are.”     ~Calvin & Hobbes
After we saw the Mendenhall glacier we went back to Juneau and took the Mt. Roberts tram up 1800 feet to the visitor center there (the mountain itself is 3819 ft.). We had a nice dinner walked around a bit and then went back into town and headed back to the ship. On the way back down, as Diane tried desperately not to look out, I snapped this shot. If you follow this link you will see a view down into Juneau. My picture is looking way over towards the left of the one at the Mt. Roberts website.

129/376 - Mendenhall Glacier

Mendenhall Glacier
“If death meant just leaving the stage long enough to change costume and come back as a new character...Would you slow down? Or speed up?”     ~Chuck Palahniuk
The Mendenhall glacier in Juneau was my first glacier. It is part of the Tongass National  Forest (the largest National Forest in the US). Being able to just stand there and watch it was amazing. This picture makes it look much farther away that it was. We were RIGHT THERE. To our far right was a trail that led over to where the waterfall is on my picture. Unfortunately we didn't have enough time to amble over there. This picture was taken from the visitor center. We eventually walked down to the area in the foreground and got an even closer view. Down there we could watch the glacier in relative quiet and listen to the birds as they flew around looking for food to give their babies. One hour on location just wasn't enough. If you want a more current view of this glacier try clicking on this link that takes you to a webcam view.

Whatever you may think is the cause, we saw many places on this trip where global warming is plainly evident. We received maps of northern waterways that were completely and solidly frozen over approximately 250 years ago and we were told that most glaciers are currently retreating. I'll be glad to show you what was given to me. I can understand (not support, but understand) that some people believe that global warming happens to be a climate trend and not caused by emissions and bad behavior on the part of mankind. But I firmly believe you are deluding yourself (and dangerously obstructionist) if you believe that global warming isn't happening.
/soapbox off

128/376 - Huge Begonia

Huge Begonia at Glacier Gardens
“We shouldn't teach great books; we should teach a love of reading.”     ~B. F. Skinner
Seriously, this begonia was as wide as Diane's out stretched hand. The entire plant was full of blooms. 

The quote is for my ELA and ESL friends.

127/376 - Flower at Glacier Gardens 2

Flower at Glacier Gardens 2
“Beauty is simply reality seen with the eyes of love”
Seriously the flowers here were amazingly beautiful.

126/376 - Another View from Glacier Gardens

View from above Glacier Gardens
“Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”     ~Howard Thurman
This picture is looking out the other direction.

125/376 - View from Glacier Gardens

Juneau outskirts
"Buy land, they're not making it anymore."     ~Mark Twain
This picture doesn't do the view justice.

124/376 - Diane at Glacier Gardens

"Love is always bestowed as a gift - freely, willingly and without expectation. We don't love to be loved; we love to love."     ~Leo Buscaglia
A flower among flowers!
/corny off

123/376 - Flowers at Glacier Gardens

Flowers at Glacier Gardens
“Victory is sweetest when you've known defeat.”     ~Malcolm S. Forbes
Did I mention we had a fire alarm go off during our first night on the ship? Somewhere around 2am I awoke to a loud clanging bell. I mumbled something to Diane about "I think that's the drill alarm thing!" And she asked what I was talking about (she was just waking up). About that time the captain came on over the loud speaker and announced that they had found a small amount of smoke in the engine room but that it probably wasn't anything and for everyone to stay in their room rather than donning life jackets and standing next to our lifeboats. A few minutes after that he confirmed the situation was ok and for everyone to go back to sleep. Diane reminded me that when we took the "barf-a-rama" cruise(gambling boat off Port Isabel where she puked all night) many years ago and came back to the condo the fire alarm there rang for 20+ minutes until we woke up. As we exited the building all the other residents were looking at us like we were out of our minds. Anyhow, on Saturday morning at breakfast one of the waiters asked how we slept and I said, "You mean besides the fire alarm?" and the waiter was surprised to hear about it! He told us (in a strong Indonesian accent), "Well I guess I slept well!"

The flower above was shot at Glacier Gardens Rainforest Adventure. A rather cool place in Juneau where a guy has taken tree stumps out of the ground, turned them upside down and used the root system as a canopy for putting plantings of annual flowers. In addition to that there is a cart ride up the rainforest mountain. The whole thing was gorgeous as you'll see in the next couple of pictures. The flowers grown here are OUTSTANDING and lush - I'm sure it probably has something to do with being in a rainforest and all.

122/376 - Seattle Skyline

Seattle Skyline
And ever has it been known that love knows not its own depth until the hour of separation.     ~Kahlil Gibran
This is the view we had as we left Seattle. I was really impressed with their skyline. San Antonio is nothing compared to this.

For the next 36 hours we headed north towards Juneau. Late that night (Friday) we ran into some rough seas. I mean really rough. By Saturday afternoon a large percentage of the passengers were in their rooms, sick. I never did get sick and Diane didn't get queasy until quite late in the afternoon. At 7pm I called room service to get her a bowl of soup and crackers and to get me a club sandwich. At 9pm I called and they were like, "We're sorry. We'll get it out to you right away." At 10pm I called and got the same response so I went up to the Front Office. They too were apologetic but unhelpful. At 11pm we went up to the buffet and got a dinner. My room service order never came. We meet a couple later in the cruise that said they came down to the dining room that night and it was nearly empty.

That was the only negative of the entire cruise. We later heard from cruise staffers that this boat had never seen waves like that before. Needless to say I didn't take many pictures during this time. If I had they would have all been blurry from the rocking!

6/26 Update: Following suggestions from people on flickr.com I have adjusted this picture. I hope you like this version as much as I do.

Seattle Skyline 2

121/376 - Pine and 5th

Pine and 5th
The definition of a free society is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.     ~Adlai E. Stevenson
I tend to take pictures of whatever catches my eye. This could have been better if I had been closer to the center. Oh well.

120/376 - Corn

Hope is the pillar that holds up the world. Hope is the dream of a waking man.     ~Pliny the Elder
More from the farmers market.

119/376 - Taylor Gold Pears (none finer)

None Finer
“Really great people make you feel that you, too, can become great.”     ~Mark Twain
I had a bite of one of these and there really is none finer! It melted in my mouth and tasted like heaven.

118/376 - Why Not Take Some Home!

Why Not Take Some Home
“It's a matter of balancing convenience with taking the time to sit down and eat something healthy. We have to start taking some accountability for the foods we choose.”     ~Dr. Christopher Taylor
I have never been a healthy eater. But when I see stuff like this I just want to dig in. We bought some raspberries from this vendor and they were wonderful.

117/376 - Fish Monger 1

Fish Monger 1
“I tell people to think of fish as a healthy fast food. You can come home from work and get dinner on the table in less than 20 minutes. Just be careful if your neighbors smell what you are cooking. They will want to join you for dinner.”     ~Kevin Steele
This is the display from another fish seller at Pike Place Market. Get ready for a run of fruits and vegetables 'cause they were all over the place and I couldn't resist.

116/376 - Scarves

"Every scarf has a theme to it. The inspiration for the scarves are based on everything from the very frivolous to the serious."     ~Kim Hewitt
Again, this was just too pretty and enticing. Taken at Pike Place Market.

115/376 - Leaves

Leaves with rain drops
“It is humankind's duty to respect all life, not only animals have feelings but even also trees and plants”     ~Michel de Montaigne
I just couldn't pass this up.

114/376 - Pike Place Market Sign

Seattle's Pike Place Market Sign
“Farmers markets are green shoots coming out of the gun. They represent hope and they need to be cultivated.”     ~Jerry Brown
After I took this picture (several actually) I went into a drug store and saw a postcard with nearly the exact same shot. So what if it's a cliche, I like it! Pike Place Market started in 1907 and is one of the oldest continually run markets in the US. If you've seen videos, books and jokes about fish throwing, it started here at the Pike Place Fish Market (another photo coming soon!). Also, Starbuck's started here (or very close by) so this really was a mecca for Diane!

There is something about farmer's markets that I just love. The photography just comes natural and the sights and smells are wonderful. I especially liked that you could get meat and seafood at this market.

113/376 - Seattle Newsstand

Seattle Newsstand
“The good news out of it is that the price for our products is going up.”     ~Ross Siragusa
In downtown Seattle there are little news and snack stands all over the place. I know I don't get out much but I'd swear we don't have that much coverage here in San Antonio.

112/376 - Pidgeons

“Sometimes I lie awake at night, and ask, 'Where have I gone wrong?' Then a voice says to me, 'This is going to take more than one night.'”     ~Charles M. Schulz
One of my first pictures in Seattle. We were there in advance of taking a cruise to Alaska. Seattle is really nice and a lot bigger then I expected. San Antonio is the 7th largest city in the US and doesn't have near as many large buildings. But I'm ahead of myself. In fact I'll show you a skyline shot later in the set. These pidgeons on the man hole cover just amused me.

111/376 - Morning Glory

Morning Glory
“If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change.”     ~Buddha
This is a shot of a morning glory growing between the slats of our fence. Diane just hates these flowers (weeds) because they tend to take over everything. But for me, I enjoy them. They remind me of my grandparents house and the trellis just out the back door. Every summer it was full of these flowers and I always enjoyed looking at them.

More to Come!

I haven't died. I've been taking pictures. Lots of pictures! Look back this weekend for more.