Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Vacation Memories #1 - New England - Gloucester, Marblehead, Concord

We have returned from our fabulous vacation in New England and Quebec.  The Green Mountains of Vermont turned into the Dirty Mountains of Laundry - but I've worked through all that and the suitcases are now stowed away in the basement until the next trip.

I took 392 photos while we were on vacation!  I thought that was quite a few, but apparently Mike took several thousand!  In this post, I'll show you a few of my photos from our first few days in New England.  For the first week of our trip, we stayed in the home of our friends Craig and Laurie in Andover, MA, while they vacationed in California.  This is Heidi, their little Shih Tzu.  She was our hostess for the week.  She had us trained to the ways of Heidi within the first few hours!  She is adorable! 

For our first day trip out of Andover, we headed east to the seacoast - to Cape Ann.  Along the way we spotted this very, very old cemetery.  It was a reminder that "American History" in this part of the country goes WAY back to the 1600's.

This is a seawall in Gloucester - about as American as apple pie!

The water in Gloucester harbor was beautiful and blue.  Spectacular!  Later in our trip we returned to Gloucester for our whale-watching trip - more on that later.

I think this house is in Gloucester - if not, it's in Marblehead - which was our next stop that first day.

This funky chicken is definitely in Marblehead! 

Most of the shops in Marblehead had wonderful flower boxes. That was true everywhere - I have lots of flower box pictures!

A view of the harbor at Marblehead.

This great building was on the other side of the harbor - I don't know what it is.  It looks close, but it is actually a long way across the harbor.  I am zoomed out to the max!

Marblehead is the most picturesque of all the harbors we saw.  It is a large harbor - many boats.

The next day we headed to Concord to see the Old North Bridge.  Remember that history lesson about "the shot heard 'round the world"?  This is the place!

Here is the bridge - well, not really.  There have been 6 or 7 bridges since the shot heard round the world.  But this is a reasonable facsimile while still allowing tourists to safely walk across!  This spans the Concord River.

This is the monument on the side of the Minutemen ("the embattled farmers").

And the inscription...

The reflections of clouds and trees created an amazing affect in the river. 

I'm happy to say it is now a peaceful and serene place.

Nathaniel Hawthorne's home (The Manse) is right next to the bridge.  There is an effort to recreate his gardens - including the tallest corn I have ever seen!

Right outside of Concord is Walden Pond.  I was so excited to see it but mildly disappointed when we arrived to find a swimming beach!  I could not bear to take a photo of the beach and all the swimmers.  Yes, they were having fun... but at Walden Pond???  Not sure what Thoreau thinks about all that.

There is something very unique about this pond.  We saw many ponds, but Walden seems to have its own vibe.  To me, it was the deep green vegetation around the pond and how it grows right down to the water's edge.  It was as if the the trees were holding the water.   Even though it was a bit overcast the day we visited, the water was beautiful.  It is easy to see why Thoreau was so inspired here.

This is a re-creation of Thoreau's cabin at Walden Pond, complete with interior furnishings.  Back in Thoreau's day, it cost $28.00 to build the cabin.

Concord is also the home of the cemetery where many famous American authors are buried in an area called Author's Ridge.  It is an absolutely beautiful place.  Here is Thoreau's family stone, and his individual stone.

The Alcott family stone, and Louisa May's.  Visitors place pine cones and pebbles around the markers.

This is Louisa May Alcott's childhood home, Orchard House, in Concord.  She wrote Little Women here.  Over on the left side is the garden she and her sisters tended.  Each had a quarter of the garden, and apparently their individual personalities were reflected in their gardening efforts.

We can't leave Concord without seeing another pretty flower box!

To be continued... check back soon.

1 comment:

  1. Walden pond has a swimming beach?! Why does that surprise me?
    Nice tour, though - thanks. I love old headstones.


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