Friday, July 31, 2009

Johnston Canyon

We've been hiking our feet off. Those mountains are killing me in the breathing department but I can't stop walking. Above are pictures of Johnstone Canyon, the hike we took yesterday.

Bow River

My first attempt to use the video part of my camera--not too exciting. It is the water running in Bow River in Banff

I'm not one to sit still but I could sit still here for hours drinking in the scenery.

I keep expecting to see Ben Cartwright and his sons riding out of the mountains towards me.

(Lake Muraine--more pictures later)


The real post, Meeting strangers on the Internet in Banff followed by more vacation stuff. I have to do something with all these pictures I am taking.

The Fairmont Banff Springs--I already posted the Castle exterior--here are a few interior pictures. The hotel even offers a tour of this historical building. It was interesting and very informative. They have had a very impressive guest list over the years..

Grand Ballroom

Even the ice and soda machine room had a dignified look.

Carpet in lobby

Ceiling in lobby

Indoor pool, complete with mountain view

Outdoor pool--it is so warm and the air is so cool you can see the steam coming off it. It felt wonderful.

Hallway chandelier


Great Hall where weddings and concerts and all sorts of events are held.

Huge arched windows frame the mountain views, which can be seen from everywhere


Thursday, July 30, 2009

Sulphur Mountain

We rode the Gondola to the top of Sulphur Mountain.

Flag and the distance to many cities around the world from the top of the world.

The view of my hotel. Mr. Not Silent calls the place Banff Monstrosity and it does look like something out of Harry Potter but I loved staying there.


Wild life

Weather station at the top of the mountain.


Gondola--takes you 7486 feet up to the top of the mountain

No more arguments with Bloomberg groupie. What's the point? Neither one of us will budge from our opinions and we all know mine is the right one.


What good is a high school diploma given to a kid still can't read or write or do simple math?

What good is a high school diploma given to a kid whose teacher has been persuaded to pass him even though he has been absent 30 times, does not homework and is disrespectful?

Ask Bloomberg. He'll tell you that he is increasing graduation rates in NYC. He's moving them off the education budget and into the welfare budget.

But, he is the education mayor. He must be doing something right.

The P Is Not Silent

(sorry for the little picture but I had to crop off all identifying marks)

I'm not usually a celebrity whore but today I met one who could turn me into one. He is, the one and only The P is Silent and his lovely wife, Mrs. Not Silent.

Mr. and Mrs. Not Silent live in Calgary and drove up to Banff to have dinner and beers with POd and Mr. POd. We had a wonderful Italian dinner in a little place where Mrs. Not Silent found her G-d son running. (A pleasant surprise for her.) We chatted on and on for hours and then adjourned to a nearby pub for some more beers and conversation. What was nice is that all four of us were extremely compatable. Son of Not Silent worried that his parents were meeting a serial killer as he has been warned for years about not meeting up with internet contacts. Mr. Not Silent, like yours truly likes to regularly send letters to the editors of the local newspapers and loves to bitch about the stupidity of the school systems.

Too bad Calgary and NYC are so far apart. This blogger and his wife are definitely people I would love to spend more time with. It is amazing how blogging has gotten me in touch with someone who thinks so similarly to me.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Bloomberg and the Economy

He claims to be the one that can help the city’s fiscal problems and that he will be able to provide jobs. I haven’t seen this. Unemployment is at an all time high and there is no relief in sight.

The DOE has a hiring freeze yet hundreds of teachers are being paid to be glorified subs and lunchroom attendants. Many are languishing in the rubber room, drawing salaries and doing nothing. Incompetents should be fired but the ones there on the whim of an incompetent principal should be back in the classroom. Millions are being spent on the arbitrators who will hear these cases.

Just whose economy is he helping? Not that of the average New Yorker.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Banff Wildlife

Being a New Yorker, seeing animals not in a zoo is a treat. I'm glad I had my telephoto lens in so I was even able to get some real good close ups. (We were really close to them so my shots would have been good even with regular lens.)

Banff Day 1

The rain seems to be following me--first Switzerland, now here. It is beautiful regardless of the soaking we got walking back to the hotel last night. (My husband wanted to drive but I insisted on going it on foot.) Hopefully there will be better pictures later.

Bow Falls

The mountains The town

Bow River

The Fairmont Banff--the hotel we are staying in. It is magnificent but too big for my taste. We get lost every time we have to find the room.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Don't Forget

(Photo from Banff)

I am going to try to fight Bloomberg’s reelection right here. I know not that many people read this blog, but still, I’ve got to try. He has done nothing but hurt the city with his elitist policies and I’ve got to do my part to try to stop him. I am going to try to point out as many negative things as I can about this man from now until election time. It is time to stop focusing on how he screwed up education. He has screwed up other parts of city life as well.

Don’t forget—Bloomberg was the mayor that said we don’t need fire call boxes because everyone has cell phones, even his 90 year old mother. He did not take into account the poor single mother living from pay check to pay check without the cell phone.

Don’t forget—Bloomberg ticketed your cars after the big ice storm if you did not move them (He had to take back the tickets after a big public outcry.)

Don’t forget—he tried to make parking meters effective on Sunday and when the courts made him rescind this, he left the signs up for months forcing many people to pay when they did not have to.

Don’t forget—in many areas he raised parking meter fee to $.25 for 20 minutes instead of $.25 for 30 minutes without letting the public know.

Don’t forget—he changed school busing in the middle of the year so that many children were left stranded.

Don’t forget—he usurped public sentiments and got the City Council to allow him to run for a third term even though he led the fight against Guiliani’s third term.

I just listened to Bob Marley’s Get Up Stand Up For Your Rights. This is just what we have to do.

Supermarket Junkie

Off on vacation again. this time I will have internet access although I don't know how much time I will have to use it.

Here is the last Switzerland post for a while.

I really am a cheap date. I had a great time walking around the major supermarket in Zurich

I loved being able to find Kosher food.

Nice to see specially designed shopping carts.

Notice the magnifying glass on every cart to help read those tiny labels.