Category Archive Photos

ByRick Deutsch

Key West is a fun destination for speakers | Be sure to see Hemmingway’s house

Key West - Southernmost point in USA

Key West – Southernmost point in USA

Key West was surprisingly pretty fun. The wharf area has a lot of neat shops and attractions. At evening all kinds of, well, freaks come out of the cracks in the sidewalks. Funny costumes and face makeup. My kind of fun.

The town is a gay center of the US and vies with San Francisco for honors.
There are shops full of local paintings and sculptures. This photo is a “mandatory” for your trip. It’s a moderate walk to the west and you can count on a line pf people waiting to get their photo.

Key West is a usual stop fo cruise ships sailing the Caribbean. It’s not exactly cheap, but I ended up buying a needed pair of shoes that I did not see in California. I even rented a scooter for $40 and tooled around the island. They ask you to stay you in the main town, but I had to go north a few miles to see the Naval Air station. While I was in college, I was in ROTC and able to get a hop down there from Andrews AFB. A fun time even back there. I spend 3 days on a young person’s budge – 2 meal a day at McDonald’s!

Oh, I forgot, Ernest Hemmingway’s house is open for tours.

A good read => Alaska

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ByRick Deutsch

Hiroshima’s Genbaku Dome Remains Standing After 1945 Atomic Blast

 

The only building to survive the atom bomb in 1941.

The only building to survive the atom bomb in 1941.

This dome at Hiroshima, Japan is one of the only structures that survived the atomic bomb on August 3, 1945. The Enola Gay, a B-29, dropped the first atom bomb every used in war. The plane is currently on display at the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum at the Udvar-Hazy Dulles Annex in Chantilly, VA..

The Hiroshima Prefectural Products Exhibition Hall (Genbaku Dome) survived because the bomb as detonated at 1900 feet – directly above the dome and the force travelled down on the structure. It’s guiders were able to withstand this vertical force. Other building were blown down from the angular force. 80,000;  almost half the population. The city had 340,000 before the bomb. About 69% of the city’s buildings were completely destroyed.

Today the Memorial park is a somber experience. the on-sire museum gives the entire story. 3-day later, the US dropped a nuclear bomb on Nagasaki. These prompted the Japanese to surrender, saving millions of Allied and citizen lives had an invasion took place. this ended World War 2 in the Pacific. Japan is currently a strong ally of the United States.

 

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ByRick Deutsch

Why you should take an Alaskan Cruise that includes Skagway

 

The White Pass Railroad at Skagway, Alaska

The White Pass Railroad at Skagway, Alaska

The downtown of Skagway looks like a western movie set with restored olde tyme facades. A highlight of the town is the famous steam train into the mountains.  The train takes visitors up the White Pass and across the border of Canada.  During the Klondike Gold Rush of 1897-98, men flocked to San Francisco and Seattle to catch a ride up to seek their treasure. At Skagway/Dyea, they then the walked the 33 mile , just west of the White Pass. Chilkoot was shorter but more difficult. The narrow gauge train over White Pass was finished in 1900.

The sharp rise of the Chilkoot Trail

The sharp rise of the Chilkoot Trail

The Canadian government  did not want to have to take care of impoverished Americans, so the required each man to show the Royal Canadian Mounties at the border all the supplies that each would need for 1 year. This amounted to 1 ton. So they literally had to carry boxes of their supplies the 33 miles to enter Canada at Bennet. They had to go up the steep Chilcoot Trail. It was made famous by the early photos showing lines of men like ants walking up the snowy hill.

When the Argonauts (the name for gold miners)  arrived across the border, they were faced with a harsh winter that they had to wait out since the Yukon river was frozen, stopping them from continuing on their 400 mile trip to Dawson – the center of the mining operations.  During that winter they built rafts and crude boats. Many died. When the thaw came, they floated down with many flipping in the occasional rapids.

The sad part of the story is that when they arrived in Dawson, most of the claims had already been issued, leaving them with no chance to pan for their own gold. Most were sadly stuck between the proverbial rock and hard place. Many settled in Canada and became farmers. Many headed back home.

The White Pass railroad, built after the gold rush, made the eastward trek a lot easier. The Skagway White Pass steam train is a great way to experience that era.

 

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