Sunday 29 June 2014


We have travelled down to near Charlottesville to visit Monticello which was the home of Thomas Jefferson. It is set on the top of a hill and the name indeed means Little Mountain. 

The gardens have been restored to contain many of the plants recorded as grown during Jefferson's time.

Some of these we recognised but others we didn't. We had a good walk around the gardens before taking a tour of the house.
No photography was allowed in the house. The kitchens were in a separate building under the house and had a slave cook who had been trained in French Cuisine. He needed a clock because of the exact timings and so one was provided! It looked very out of place in the basic kitchen!

On the way back down we saw the extensive vegetable garden.

And the vineyard with far reaching views behind.

We were also curious as to why coins had been thrown at the base of his grave.

Saturday 28 June 2014

Around Reston

After a late return last night we had a quieter day. Julie headed off for her shift at the Bargain Basement. Emma and I headed off to the cinema.

Emma may not be looking her best as in true form she had needed more than a few tissues during the film.
We had a wander around Reston and admired the refreshing looking fountain.

We finished off the day with supper on the decking.

Friday 27 June 2014

The Summertime Photography Scavenger Hunt No.16 A Sign In Another Language Other Than English

My first thought for this photo would be one written in Welsh which would have been simple with a quick trip over the Severn Bridge. I spotted however a large number when travelling through Chinatown, Manhattan.

Not Quite to Schedule and Downtown Manhattan

The day started with a trip to Macey's for a spot of retail therapy.

We then headed off for an open top bus tour. Unable to find the bus we wanted we opted for what turned out to be a rather inferior company. The traffic and the blazing heat were at times difficult to endure but we still got a good taste of the different areas.
We passed the Flatiron Building.

We passed through Chinatown and Little India.

There were views across the river to Long Island.

We were ready for a break by the time we reached The Rockafella Centre.

and because of time limits decided not to continue on the Uptown loop around Central Park but walked to see Central Station.

The day proved to be a little more "off schedule" when we arrived at Penn Station for our journey back to DC to find the train was an hour and a half late...

Thursday 26 June 2014

New York by Water

The water taxi is a novel and interesting mode in which to see New York. We spent most of the day on and off the boat. This gave us an overview of the city.

We had a great view albeit in blazing sun from the open top of the boat.

We travelled up as far as Brooklyn Bridge

Most of the way we had views back at Lower Manhatten with the New World Trade Centre dominating the skyline.

 We had impressive views of the Statue of Liberty.

A short but hot walk took us to the 9/11 memorial with the new museum behind. Certainly an area for reflection.

The new build above gives a definite impression of defiance.

An ice cream at Brooklyn was well received with time for a break from the sun in their gazebo.

The light had changed by our return.

In the evening we ventured up The Empire State Building. We could see by the queuing system that we were very lucky to only have a short wait. It was worth it. We had breathtaking early evening views.

The lights became more vibrant as it got darker and Times Square was particularly impressive.

Wednesday 25 June 2014

Summertime Photography Scavenger Hunt No. 20

There are plenty of buses in New York and Washington with pictures

Summertime Photography Scavenger Hunt no. 5

Plenty of Opportunity in New York for postcards!

And to New York

We had an early start setting off to Union Station for our trip to New York by train. We had a little time to have a look around the old part of the station. Part of this seemed to be undergoing renovations. Some included some boutique style shops.

Including a very appropriately named one.

On arrival in New York it was instantly noticeable what a busy vibrant city it is compared to the more sophisticated DC. We had a very short walk to book into our hotel.

We then set off to Times Square. There was plenty of time to take some pictures whilst queuing for theatre tickets.

It was then time for a few shops including M&Ms 

Then Hershey's 

Then finally Toys R Us

We all enjoyed our visit to see Jersey Boys in the evening.

Followed by an interesting trip back by rickshaw through the illuminated Times Square.