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Showing posts from November, 2010

Can You Handle More Scenes From the Path?

Sorry I am overloading you with bike path pictures, but that's all I've done lately. It's all good stuff so kick back, have some coffee and check out what I did today.

I have been wanting to go further on the path and decided this week was the time to stretch my journeys on the path. My goal today: ride from Tyrone area all the way up town to Tropicana Field. According to Google maps my journey will take 7.4 miles and all of it is on the city-wide bike path. OK, let's go!

Oops, haven't even got on the path yet and discovered I have forgotten my water bottle. Tough it out, Mike and keep focused.

This neat "Field of Dreams" mural on the side of a building was nice.

This looks to be an old railroad depot (the path used to be railroad) that has been transformed into the St. Petersburg Clay Company. They have structures along the yard area with some of their work.

Question: I passed this quarry and they are watering their rocks and gravel. Anyone know why?

An a…

Many Ways to the Path

Like I have written before, the 40 mile path across St. Petersburg (ending at the Bay) and into Clearwater, is a treasure.  Used extensively for serious and not-so-serious bikers, rollerskaters, walkers, joggers, grocery-carts-filled-with-junksters, and even (illegally) an occasional motorized bicycle, this is a golden way to travel.  I have been  impressed with how cars and trucks will stop for us just by sight, even before we push the button that turns on the flashing lights. Pedestrians and bikers are gods here.

Access is fairly straightforward, except when we have a good rain.  The ditches lining the path get full of water, making entry or exit somewhat problematic.  Above, there are overpasses at major streets with very easy on-off points. But, as you will see in the final picture, industrious and brave souls win the day.  

Many sidewalks will allow easy entry.
There are lots of well and not-so-well constructed platforms and walkways.

And then, for the more adventurous, here is a …

Happy Thanksgiving


We'll post again next Monday.

Inane Inanities

1. “In 1750, Jacques Ferron was caught having sex with an ass and sentenced to death. To add insult to injury, the ass had a character witness:

The prior to the convent … and the principal inhabitants of the commune of Vanvres signed a certificate stating that they had known the said she-ass for four years, and that she had always shown herself to be virtuous and well-behaved both at home and abroad and had never given occasion of scandal to any one, and that therefore ‘they were willing to bear witness that she is in word and deed and in all her habits of life a most honest creature.’

The ass was acquitted, and Ferron hanged.

From Edward Payson Evans, The Criminal Prosecution and Capital Punishment of Animals, 1906.”

2. When I used to go to training an obvious time-filling devise was to gather in groups and do little assignments. I also hated them for what they were: merely ways to get through a specified period of time, ergo, time for the trainers to kick back and not do their jobs.…

Illinois Power Tree Trimming & Florida

A topped pine tree.

A line of trees dessimated by IP trimming process.

A few years ago Illinois Power/AmerenIP began a tree trimming policy that entailed the massive cutting of any lims and branches that were within any way close to power lines. Many trees all over the area became grotesque characterizations of a Dali painting. Outrage from the local citizens was met with pronouncements from IP that this was standard practice, would eliminate outages and would not hurt the trees, except visually.

Here, in the land of hurricanes, I noticed power lines running right through a line of trees that seemingly does not require major surgery from the local power company.  I wonder why trees down here are not deemed to be a reason for outages like they are up north.  The potential for powerful storms are just as possible here as in Galesburg.  Makes you wonder about labor costs, bottom-line bean-counting, the philosophy of landscaping and customer service.  I don't know who handles power d…


Apparently October 10th was a big, big, big day for weddings on the beaches down here. We went to Sunset for an evening walk and discovered at 6:00 pm that there were no fewer than 3 wedding parties clogging the beach, and more importantly clogging the parking lots. It's likely that November 11th next year will be huge as well as, oh, maybe 9-10-11?

Other than the weddings we had to walk by, the evening was pretty impressive for just strolling, and checking out a cloudless sunset.

As I was leaving I saw this guy heading out for a swim and I heard someone close by that sunset is when the sharks feed. I don't know if that is true, but I wouldn't want to take the chance.

Michael's First Soccer Match

Video of Michael's first soccer game in North Port. (October 9)

Michael all set to play. My understanding is they didn't have a very extensive training period. Looked to me like herding cats, though, and I am certainly not a big soccer fan.

Michael in a post-game pose.

Caught another freighter crossing the Skyway.

Approaching the Skyway.

Green Acres

I almost bought a house last month. So close, in fact that I stopped over at Sears to check out lawn mowers. You know, those neat Cub Cadet types where you have a beverage holder and can actually make mowing somewhat fun. Nancy and I looked at it when we were back in September. I loved it. 5 acres nestled in the prettiest green Illinois valley. 10 miles north of Galesburg and only a short jag over to BFE, it was ideally located. It even had a barn. A small one but it looks like a barn, so it is. I even had everyone in the family kind of rooting for me. But, sadly, the foreclosure company chose another offer. There were a couple of middling problems, like mold and non-too-safe wellwater, but we could have handled that, I suppose. Yep, that could have been my summer home and could have wintered down here. Sure sounded neat. I pictured myself, with cup of coffee in hand, in the morning belting out a couple of bars of "Green Acres" lounging on the front porch. Also s…

New! Improved! Sunset Beach

I posted this video a while back of work being done to our favorite secluded beach. We weren't sure what all this was until we went back a week ago. What was
a rather small beach area has been widened into quite a spectacular white-sand area.

Here, then is our new and improved Sunset Beach.

This young lady would improve any beach.

This is one of those "Smart Cars" you may have heard about. I read that they are not very comfy, have very little safety features and are not that economical, but you see quite a few here.


There is an army of these young people combing the streets of downtown St. Pete on their Segways giving out free water.
I took short video of the minnows or whatever they are in the water not only here at the Pier but at all the beaches. These are the guys the birds hunt when we spend a day at Sunset beach and they will also nip you when you get in.

Downtown - 2

Continuing our day downtown...

This was a pretty big farmer/merchant market a block away from the Pier. There were all kinds of things from food to hats, to pasta to several items pampering and catering to pets. There was a band playing and people dancing. I was sweating. We're going back soon.

Saw this license plate in one tent, and couldn't resist posting it on the blog.

Pioneer Park, a pretty place commemorating the people who first settled St. Petersburg.

Pictures from the Pier.

The Pier is a soon to be razed. It is a structure jutting out into the Bay. It's inverted pyramid design has been a city landmark for decades. But age and maintenance costs are too expensive and city leaders are studying new replacement ideas.

Peaceful, warm day at the Pier.

Double click on the picture and notice the spikes they put on the light bulbs to discourage bird-sitting.

We dined at the Central Avenue Oyster Bar and I ordered oysters on the half-shell, freshly shucked from Louisiana. I w…