Thursday, 27 August 2015

A Welcome Break

The lack of posts for the last month is the result of a long-planned (and much anticipated) trip to the USA, taking in San Francisco, Southwest Alaska and Hawaii.

I really enjoyed San Francisco - a vibrant city. We visited Alcatraz, which I actually found interesting, but even more so was the one and only military thing I looked at on the mainland - when we got back to Pier 35 there was this thumping great Civil War Rodman gun on a casement carriage on display. I don't recall the calibre but it was big!

The Rodman at Pier 35

The largest part of the trip, eleven day in all, was spent in Alaska, with four days in Juneau and seven on a luxury cruise around the glaciers and inner waters. Juneau is a quaint place, although somewhat over filled with jewellery stores - much fun for her indoors, but of little interest to a wargamer on holiday. Once you got away from these stores and the hordes that came off the big cruise ships it was a great little town - it kind of reminded me of that TV programme "Northern Exposure" that was around in the 1990's, with lots of quirky people.

The cruise was everything a luxury cruise was supposed to be. Just 36 passengers and 15 crew, great food, good wine, stunning scenery, an abundance of wildlife (from bears, whales, otters, seals, sea lions, wolves, dolphins, porpoises, eagles and a huge number of different types of sea birds), kayaking and onshore excursions.
Coastal Brown Bears on Baranof Island

The final phase of the trip was in Honolulu. This was the wind down part if the trip and we pretty much just poked around the city. We did do two military things - visited the Arizona Memorial and the Missouri at Pearl Harbour. I am not a naval person, but the Missouri was fantastic. 

We also visited the Hawaiian Army Museum at Waikiki. I had been there seventeen years ago, but it has had a make over and is a great little museum - and is free.

Two of the Vehicles on Display Outside the Museum

In Barnes and Noble I found a copy of the director's cut of "Gettysburg" and "Gods and Generals" that I had been drooling over on Amazon for the last few months and managed to slip that into the suitcase.

Well it is back to reality now and back to work on Monday - I have deliberately avoided checking my work emails for the last three weeks and previous experience tells me that there will be 600 or more waiting for me!