Monday Morning Open Thread

Open thread.

Yglesias does a Oh the places you'll go post. Here's where I've been in the US, chronologically - Louisiana - Florida - DC - Virginia - Alabama - Massachusetts - Rhode Island - Connecticut - New York - New Hampshire - New Jersey - Maine - Illinois - Arizona - Colorado - California - Pennsylvania - Missouri - Georgia - Tennessee - North Carolina - South Carolina - Mississippi - Kentucky - Puerto Rico - Washington - Indiana - Ohio - West Virginia - Delaware. Obviously, I went to these states more than once and New York, Florida and Puerto Rico are places I am present almost every month.

Where do you want to go in the United States?

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    Someplace warm (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by rdandrea on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:45:52 PM EST
    It's supposed to be 6 below here tomorrow.

    Vermont (5.00 / 2) (#27)
    by Chuck0 on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:22:45 PM EST
    Took a drive through most of the state in my Mini last July. Seemed like a state full of hippies and curmudgeons. I'm a bit of both. I should fit right in.

    Summer (none / 0) (#134)
    by CST on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:35:54 PM EST
    is definitely the time to be in VT.  Unless you like to ski and/or don't mind the really really cold.  In which case, winter is definitely the time to be in VT :)

    Everywhere (5.00 / 2) (#32)
    by Coral on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:37:15 PM EST
    I've been in every state except Alaska and Hawaii. Haven't been to Yellowstone or Grand Tetons...would like to go there.

    But mostly I want to see South America, where I've never been.

    Alaska (5.00 / 1) (#112)
    by star on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:01:39 PM EST
    is awesome. we did it last summer. loved it. hiking up the exit glacier was the best. kids loved it so much. Enjoyed the fresh mountain air and the empty roadways. Denali was fantastic too. it was so overwhelming visually, we stopped taking pictures and decided to take in the views and store in our mind. We got lucky and had a moose cross the road in from of our car and saw a grizzly with her 2 cubs all playful. it was quite an experience.

    My husband wanted to go further north, but we were running out of money and vacation days.

    south America(Rio or Peru) is the next destination for us and then Africa(most awaited trip in our family).


    I've seen enough of America (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by Robot Porter on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:07:16 PM EST
    I now want to visit Asia:  China, Japan, S. Korea ... maybe even Vietnam.

    I'm a big fan of Asian movies, literature, music and history.  But I've never been to any Asian country.

    I hope I can visit at least one of these countries in the next year or two.

    Check as to already (5.00 / 2) (#58)
    by brodie on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:16:31 PM EST
    seeing a lot of US, with one or two exceptions.

    My leanings are towards visiting countries with considerable or must-see ancient monuments, temples, megaliths and the like.  China would qualify there, with the largest pyramid (or close) in the world, or with all those buried royal armies of terra cotta soldiers, plus the usual visit to the Great Wall.

    Like to revisit Egypt and the pyramids too, which I haven't seen since childhood.  Trip down the Nile to visit Luxor, etc.

    All those place in S America that are ancient and bizarre and magnificent.


    Cool stuff ... (none / 0) (#70)
    by Robot Porter on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:41:36 PM EST
    and such places are often powerful even when overrun by tourists.  But if you can find one that isn't, as you often can in Mexico, it's even more powerful.  

    Vietnam/Cambodia (Angkor Watt [sp]) (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:16:55 PM EST
    Anonymous Quote du jour (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by the capstan on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:55:04 PM EST
     I think our Members of Congress should wear uniforms like NASCAR drivers so we could identify their corporate sponsors.

    Was watching CNN earlier (none / 0) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:23:21 PM EST
    Ford announced that they anticipate hiring 7,000 new employees within the next 24 months.  This was a tiny little living pony, but because it is so rare CNN managed to practically kill it with over stimulation while at the time smothering it with grossly inflated joy and optimism.  It's a tiny little baby pony for Christ's sake, have a heart.

    Yes, (none / 0) (#39)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:53:00 PM EST
    but I would rather hear that than they are laying off 7000.

    I know 7000 is really a drop in the bucket when you look at the big picture but that's still 7000 people who will have jobs.


    The reporters are part of the propaganda (none / 0) (#45)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:58:22 PM EST
    anymore though.  They spend hours hours oooohing and aaaahing over the tiniest item...and it steers everyone away from our economic reality and demanding real solutions that serve the people.

    I really shouldn't complain as much as I do.  By the time they done breaking all of us and the system, they will have to employ universal healthcare.  They are going to smash everything people cling to to smithereens getting there though and that just isn't going to be much fun.


    I agree. (none / 0) (#47)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:01:31 PM EST
    It kind of distorts things and the anger rises because it makes the "haves" blame the "have nots" even more for their circumstances.

    7000 at Ford has a large (none / 0) (#100)
    by Rojas on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:25:51 PM EST
    multiplier effect. They still build things and they have things built. This will result in a wave that runs through parts, tooling, equipment and machinery suppliers. It's a good thing.

    State's I would like to visit: (none / 0) (#2)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:36:07 PM EST
    Delawara (Dupont Estate), Maine, Montana, Wyoming.

    Have been in Kansas and I don't recommend it

    State's I would like to visit again and again:  New York.

    If you are in the mood (5.00 / 2) (#6)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:46:56 PM EST
    for du Pont estates, also go visit Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA.  One of the best botanical gardens in the US.  Absolutely beautiful, and you can keep going back at different times of the year and see different, seasonal plants and flowers blooming.   (This was Pierre S. du Pont's estate).

    Thanks. Definitely on my "to do" list. (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:52:40 PM EST
    And if you're (none / 0) (#13)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:05:40 PM EST
    in the Brandywine River Valley anyway, Chadd's Ford and the Brandywine Museum aren't all that far away, either, and definitely worth visiting.  Great collection of all the Wyeths' works, plus a nice wildflower conservancy, and you can also tour the Kuerner Farm (which was one of Andrew Wyeth's major sources of inspiration for his paintings).

    Montana and Wyoming (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by shoephone on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:06:32 PM EST
    The greatest camping/hiking trip ever. We went to Glacier Nat'l Park, the most spectactular mountains I've ever climbed. All the hikes were totally different, totally beautiful -- some challenging climbs, some by creekbeds, some in snow! Lots of wildlife. Unfortunately, the glaciers are melting at an alarming rate, and those mountains are not the same as they were nearly twenty years ago. And the Tetons, in Wyoming, were also wondrous beauty.

    Missoula and Bozeman were great little college towns, a lot of fun. But they're probably much changed since then too.


    I suggested my brother and I (none / 0) (#18)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:13:37 PM EST
    "do" Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, and Glacier this summer.  He hasn't responded yet.

    Oh yes.... (none / 0) (#25)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:20:20 PM EST
    I bet he goes.  

    I'd enjoy... (none / 0) (#49)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:05:07 PM EST
    a nature/hiking trip like that...so much country, so little time, and even less money:)

    I was intrigued by (none / 0) (#52)
    by brodie on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:10:08 PM EST
    the Grand Tetons as a kid watching one of my fave teevee shows, alas short-lived, The Monroes, starring a young and lovely Barbara Hershey.  Then later I got around to seeing Shane, also shot in the Grand Tetons.

    Still haven't gotten around to actually visiting but would like to some day.


    A cherished memory (5.00 / 1) (#87)
    by christinep on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:03:29 PM EST
    persists from the 1980s when my husband, sister, and Lucy-dog spent the night in a cabin on Jackson Lake. About 2:00 in the morning, little Lucy wanted out. What a remarkable out! The three humans walked to shore's edge on this early September night to gape in wonder at the bouncing, shimmering Northern Lights. Filled with peace, we awoke the next day to gaze at the rapidly rising Tetons.  Go. Visit. Live it.

    Kansas isn't very pretty is it? (none / 0) (#19)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:14:59 PM EST
    My family's ranches in Eastern Colorado are very similar...and close to Kansas.  The cemetary that much of my family is buried in is named Kansa, in honor of the Indians that used to farm in the region before we did.

    I would like to visit the art museum in (none / 0) (#21)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:16:18 PM EST
    Kansas City.

    Have never been (none / 0) (#26)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:21:14 PM EST
    I would go though

    A way to look at Kansas (none / 0) (#91)
    by christinep on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:15:54 PM EST
    For a number of reasons, I've driven through Kansas west-to-east & east-to-west more than a dozen times. My husband regards me as a bit nutty when I say "Its all how you want to look at it."

    Here is what I really like to see in Kansas: The long, slow rise of the land as you move from east to west...from the greenish hills near Lawrence & Topeka to the flat wheaten vastness in the Hays and KS/CO border area. Kansas sunsets are memorable, and more than rival any paintings of coral brushed daysend in the finest museums. On a more detailed level, some of the old towns off the main byways offer their own surprises--a Czech town a bit east in the state or a looming plains cathedral near Hays that reminds the visitor of a setting in Europe.

    But, yoiks, it is still a long drive.


    I have a distinct love for the countryside (none / 0) (#95)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:21:00 PM EST
    there, while realizing that my fond and loved childhood memories wed to wind and sagebrush aren't often seen through the same lens by new visitors.

    And if my husband dies in a war (none / 0) (#96)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:22:10 PM EST
    and is buried at Arlington I have requested to be planted in Kansa :)

    Not me, when that big old day comes, (5.00 / 2) (#105)
    by KeysDan on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:43:14 PM EST
    I want to be buried in Chicago, so I can stay active in Democratic politics.

    Laughter...thank you for the quote of the day. (none / 0) (#114)
    by christinep on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:05:03 PM EST
    I've done that KS-CO (none / 0) (#117)
    by brodie on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:20:13 PM EST
    drive a few times, back in my youthful days behind the wheel, and indeed it is fascinating to note the gradual elevation above sea level as one heads west towards Denver, the Mile High City.  

    And apart from noting the occasional lovely small hills of western KS, what kept me awake during the long drive was noting the numbers go up on all the road-markers that give you the sea level reading.  Interesting, subtle 3-4,000 foot rise in elevation (or whatever it is) going from mid-KS to Denver.

    But iirc KS can be mind-numbing as a driver since the interstates are laid out straight as an arrow since the terrain is largely that, and flat.  Otoh, this is helpful if you're a stickler for getting from point A to point B on the map and know that's in a straight line.  Ot2h, it's a dead-straight line highway, and the mind tends to easily get mesmerized with the unending sameness of the road ahead.


    Driving across Kansas. (5.00 / 2) (#122)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:37:48 PM EST
    As I told my friend right after I completed that drive- it took me 6 months to drive through Kansas one day.

    It was interminable. Monotony broken only by the occasional clump of tumbleweed.


    The hilly tallgrass prairie part of (none / 0) (#31)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:31:18 PM EST
    southern Kansas is very pretty, IMO. Spent a nice day driving through it once on the way back to Denver from Oklahoma City. There is a little artsy town with some galleries. William Least-Heat Moon wrote a book I really enjoyed called PrairyErth about that area.

    I want to go to New York (none / 0) (#3)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:40:58 PM EST
    NYC, upstate, all over. I've only spent one day in NYC, and one hour at the opposite end of Lake Champlain from the Burlington ferry.

    Oh yeah, and Hawaii. Can't believe I have not been there yet!

    Trouble is my US travel these days is usually to visit friends or family and I have zero of either in NY, except for kdog, my adopted brother.

    In a previous life I did a lot of traveling for work, and between that and pleasure travel have spent at least one night in most of the states. There are a couple that I have only driven through and not spent the night - NJ, South Dakota, and S. Carolina. I've only missed Hawaii and Kentucky altogether.

    I loved (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:55:28 PM EST
    Hawaii- you absolutely must go if you have a chance.  AS for me, I'd love to go visit Puerto Rico; Mr. Z has been (and loved it) but I never have.  Right now, "warm" is appealing to me; I get less and less tolerant of winter as I get older.

    Puerto Rico (none / 0) (#115)
    by star on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:05:56 PM EST
    is terrific. lovely place and there is something of every body there. Topography changes a few miles inland from the beach. The beaches, rainforest, winding hilly roads, the lovely roadside places selling coconuts...all awesome. Food was fantastic too. spent least amount of time in San juan. more on the east and west ends of the country.

    I do (none / 0) (#128)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:51:05 PM EST
    so want to go.  We have friends who have a vacation place down there, so we'd even have a place to stay.  Beaches are good.  So are rain forests.  ;-)

    I don't live in NYC but am just across the water (5.00 / 1) (#132)
    by vml68 on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:21:22 PM EST
    so you have one more friend in the area. If you ever need a place to crash let me know.

    How is it that people who live hundreds of miles away get to meet kdog when I am practically his neighbor and haven't met him yet?


    Oh yeah - have not been to Conn either (none / 0) (#4)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:41:38 PM EST
    No one in my immed. family (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:53:38 PM EST
    has been to Hawaii.

    mine neither (none / 0) (#11)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:56:00 PM EST
    I guess we are not an island people.

    Growing up in the Midwest, those who (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:11:28 PM EST
    had extra $$ went to Hawaii, FL, or Banff/Lake Louise.  I still want to visit the latter.  And I enjoy Key West.  Figure I'll see Hawaii from a rocking chair on the deck of a cruise ship--later.

    Exactly. I grew up in the midwest too (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:02:13 PM EST
    and the neighbors with money took Florida vacations. I don't know any that went to Hawaii. We went to Wisconsin Dells!

    Hey, where has Cream City been?


    A little love for Canada- nice! (none / 0) (#33)
    by canuck eh on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:41:27 PM EST
    Banff and Jasper National Parks are both absolutely beautiful.

    I've been to DC, NY, PA, OH, NC & WA- mostly for sports tourneys. DC was an experience I'll never forget, particularly (perhaps a bit morbid) the Viet Nam memorial. Never seen anything like that, no one speaks within 20 feet of the wall and you can just feel this intensity.

    Visited WA and happened to be there for the cherry blossoms- that's a trip that I would highly recommend!


    And I need to ski Banff too (none / 0) (#35)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:43:49 PM EST
    Hawaii I definitely (none / 0) (#30)
    by tworivers on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:30:10 PM EST
    want to check out.  I've wanted to go since I was a kid, but watching Lost just intensified the feeling.

    I'm an east coaster so New Mexico (Taos, White Sands NM) and west Texas (Big Bend NP, Carlsbad Caverns) as well as Montana, Louisiana, Washington State, Oregon, and Alaska are all on my list too.


    We'd be honored to have ruffian... (none / 0) (#28)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:24:13 PM EST
    if you make it you better give your brother from another mother a heads up!

    I'd suggest timing a trip to go see a Midnight Ramble at Levon's in Woodstock...you'd dig it.  Upstate NY is gorgeous and Levon is...Levon!  I'm sure dates after Feb/March will be posted soon.


    Perhaps Ruffian is interested in (none / 0) (#34)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:42:18 PM EST
    Gogol's "Diary of a Madman" @ BAM?  

    That does look good! (none / 0) (#40)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:54:17 PM EST
    I just read about it on their site. I'll have to look at that time period. I do have tentative plans the first week in March, but maybe before then....

    How about Feb. 26, 2 p.m. matinee? (none / 0) (#42)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:55:44 PM EST
    I think that would work. (none / 0) (#51)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:09:17 PM EST
    Do you already have tickets? wow, this would be fun!

    Yes. Single tickets went on (none / 0) (#55)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:15:19 PM EST
    sale this morning.  Going fast.

    Do it! (none / 0) (#57)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:15:45 PM EST
    Worse comes to worse you can have Oc's extra and I'll score one local...just get your arse up here.

    Well, all right then!! (none / 0) (#68)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:38:43 PM EST
    Bought a ticket!

    I'll look into air fares etc this evening at home at my leisure.

    Thanks you guys! I needed a jolt out of the winter doldroms (yes, we have doldroms in FL too.)


    If you're feeling flush, get a ticket (none / 0) (#72)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:42:30 PM EST
    for "The Importance of Being Earnest" at Roundabout Theatre for 7:30 p.m. Sat.  And a reservation for BAM bus for getting back into Manhattan.

    Yes Ma'am! (none / 0) (#75)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:44:00 PM EST
    In for a penny in for a pound!

    Do you need anymore suggestions? (none / 0) (#76)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:47:27 PM EST
    Gergiev/LSO/Mahler at Lincoln Center.  Feb. 23/25/and 27 (the reason I'm going).

    thanks! I do want to do some walking (none / 0) (#80)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:53:44 PM EST
    around and visit the museums too. A Lincoln Center performance is something I should experience too though. I'll have to make some decisions!

    You must, must, must (5.00 / 1) (#98)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:23:05 PM EST
    go to New York City.  The museums (not just the big ones, but there are smaller gems, too), yes, Lincoln Center, and the food!  You don't have to go to the most expensive, four-star places to get great food in NYC (I am absolutely convinced that you cannot get a "real" bagel outside of NYC).  I love visiting NYC- we go regularly, because Zorba-daughter lives there.  I'm not sure I'd want to actually live there (I love my farm on the mountain), but it's great to visit.

    I've been wanting to check out this venue (none / 0) (#111)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:01:31 PM EST
    so am going to this Monday night:  lepoissonrouge

    yesterday, but since I tore my ACL up a few days ago, I had to cancel my trip. I might still be able to reschedule in the next couple of weeks, but I'm not sure what my MRI and doctor will say. Hate to miss free travel on the company dime. :(

    Ouch - not fun (none / 0) (#53)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:12:02 PM EST
    Mine is torn from skiing. I opted not to have it repaired due to my general activity level, age, etc. Limited side to side movement is easy for me to deal with. I wear a brace now for skiing and hiking, but everything else is just fine. YMMV depending on activities you enjoy.

    Good luck!


    I'll add - I have no pain (none / 0) (#54)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:13:46 PM EST
    unless I slip and twist my knee, and that is just momentary. I do notice a little less stability on that side, and try to keep my leg muscles in good shape to support it.

    My last time skiing was the time I tore (none / 0) (#73)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:43:05 PM EST
    ACL, which did heal nicely.

    I'm still very active, basketball, tennis, golf, so I'll opt for surgery if that's what it takes. I'd go the non surgery option if I thought I could get away with it, but there seems to be a lot of damage.

    I haven't been skiing in 20 years, Swiss Alps, most fun I've ever had.


    Ouch! (5.00 / 1) (#127)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:49:32 PM EST
    Not fun.  Best wishes for a successful surgery/recovery/whatever it takes.

    Bummer r-crat... (none / 0) (#61)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:21:58 PM EST
    I remember you talking about the trip...wishes of a speedy recovery to you sir.

    Thx! that sounds like a great event to (none / 0) (#38)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:49:12 PM EST
    plan for. I'm finding event-based travel to be a lot of fun in the last few years. Pick a concert or something on one day and use a few days surrounding to do other things. I'm not as good at aimless wandering as I used to be!

    No rock-n-roll show like it... (none / 0) (#62)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:24:25 PM EST
    Levon lets you wander around his farm, byob, and a great friendly group of people.

    Lots of campgrounds in the area, and of course Tinker St., to make a weekend of it.


    SCOTUS denies cert. re federal (none / 0) (#9)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 12:55:25 PM EST
    law barring felons from possessing body armor.  Scalia and Thomas dissent, based on recent SCOTUS opinions re Commerce Clause.  WSJ

    Isle Royale (none / 0) (#12)
    by jharp on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:04:35 PM EST
    Isle Royale. (island in Lake Superior)

    A couple of years ago I would have said Alaska but I don't think I could handle the teabagging redneck trash today.

    And the only reason to visit Hawaii is it's unique natural features. Beach lovers needn't bother.

    My husband grew up on the Great Lakes (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:10:51 PM EST
    a whole way of life that I don't understand, but everyone can swim by five I noticed :)

    Lower Great Lakes, yes (none / 0) (#141)
    by Towanda on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 07:15:21 PM EST
    there is some swimming.  On very warm days when the very cold water feels good.  Briefly.

    But lots of people living on the upper Great Lakes do not learn to swim, not unless in swimming pools.

    The beaches -- the dunes -- along the upper Great Lakes are absolutely gorgeous, though.  For the few months of the year when the beach is sand, and for msot of the year when the beach is snow and ice.  But then, watch for spot where the waves are frozen in mid-wave, awesome beauty of nature's sculptures to behold.  That happens sometimes on the lower Great Lakes, but rarely.


    I would like to ski Oregon before (none / 0) (#15)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:09:11 PM EST
    I check out.  I would also like to hunting for diamonds in Arkansas, but will settle for a dog show or two. I miss New Mexico.  I could at least get there a few times a year living out West.  I want to retire in New Mexico someday.  I do not miss Utah.

    My brother is thinking of re-settling in (none / 0) (#20)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:15:23 PM EST
    Alb.  I sd., why not Santa Fe?

    Santa Fe, Taos, Las Cruces (none / 0) (#22)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:18:29 PM EST
    Rio Dosa...just send me :)  It speaks to my soul.  My great great grandfather settled in Rio Dosa.  My great grandfather was the baby and not due to inherit anything so went to the scrubby ole plains of Colorado to seek his fortune.

    Southern New Mexico (5.00 / 1) (#56)
    by MKS on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:15:32 PM EST
    is astonishingly beautiful.....Taos and
    Santa Fe in Northern New Mexico get more press and tourists...

    Las Cruces, Silver City and surrounding forests and mountains, Elephant Butte reservoir, the Gila Cliff dwellings, Carslbad Caverns, Ruidoso where they have horse racing, and the nearby Mescalero Apache Reservation, White Sands, Mesilla (of Billy the Kid fame), and Dona Ana and Lincoln Counties  are places of the Old West--great scenic beauty....


    Is Alb still rough? (none / 0) (#24)
    by Militarytracy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:19:37 PM EST
    diamond hunting (none / 0) (#137)
    by jharp on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:59:44 PM EST
     "I would also like to go hunting for diamonds in Arkansas"

    Now that is an idea. I've long really really liked looking for native American artifacts and other cool rocks as well.

    Thanks for reminding me of the diamond hunting in Arkansas.


    One of the coolest and (none / 0) (#138)
    by brodie on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 06:22:02 PM EST
    hottest summer experiences I ever had was spending a half-day with excited siblings looking for diamonds in a large open field in Arkansas.  Cool because of what we might possibly turn up, hot because it was August and about 98º with 98% humidity and no shade.

    Hoping for a West Coast... (none / 0) (#23)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:18:58 PM EST
    tour this summer with a buddy of mine, pre-planning stage, funds and vacation time permitting...his cousin he wants to see is in N. Cali, then Oregon, Washington and Vancouver BC.  Never been further west in the US than Vegas before so I'd really like to make this happen and see how the cats meow out West.  

    But Mexico in March is first on the travel agenda...I'm fiending.

    I see lots of salmon in your future. (none / 0) (#36)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:45:11 PM EST
    Salmon? (5.00 / 2) (#41)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:54:38 PM EST
    Is that a new strain of BC bud? :)

    I was going to say that my favorite trips (none / 0) (#43)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:56:45 PM EST
    in recent years have been to the northwest. The San Juan islands are gorgeous, and Vancouver is beautiful and cosmopolitan, and Victoria and surrounding areas are gorgeous too. So much to do up there. You would love it. and, yes, fantastic seafood!

    kdog, if you make it to Portland, I will (none / 0) (#63)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:27:47 PM EST
    happily buy you a drink, and if you are up for a hike, take you to the astoundingly beautiful Columbia River Gorge.

    We are quite proud of our homegrown beer and wine. And I hear we have other agricultural products that may interest you, products found in a marketplace I have not visited in decades. :)

    Just let me know, my friend, if and when you will arrive.


    Better look me up :) (none / 0) (#66)
    by nycstray on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:37:03 PM EST
    Will do... (none / 0) (#86)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:02:19 PM EST
    stray and Capt. Casey...but I'll have my road dog with me....he's a cool dude.

    If we make it happen...like I said, still in pre-planning stage, things need to come together.


    I concur with splitting those into separate trips (none / 0) (#82)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:55:19 PM EST
    unless you have all summer!

    May be biting off... (none / 0) (#85)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:58:17 PM EST
    more than we can chew...14 days?  Starting in Frisco area, renting a whip to drive north, stops in Portland and Seattle, then Vancouver, then back to Seattle to fly home.

    We wanna squeeze a lot in cuz we don't know when we'll get back...is that too much for 2 weeks?


    For pity's sake (5.00 / 1) (#123)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:39:50 PM EST
    don't fail to stop and see the redwoods in Northern California on your way up to Oregon and Washington.  And the Oregon Coast is gorgeous.  I loved it.  

    If you fly home from Seattle (none / 0) (#89)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:06:36 PM EST
    that seems like a do-able tour to me. You'd at least get a flavor for all of the places and decide where you want to go back to if you get a chance.

    It would be a lot of car-time though (none / 0) (#90)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:10:12 PM EST
    Thanks... (none / 0) (#92)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:17:53 PM EST
    that's what we were thinking...do-able with a lot of driving, hopefully scenic.

    West coast driving times (none / 0) (#99)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:23:54 PM EST
    If you take I-5 it is a 12 hour drive, straight through from San Francisco to Portland. Portland to Seattle is approx. 3 hours. Same for Seattle to B.C.

    If you take Hwy. 101, the times lengthen considerably, but the scenery improves exponentially.

    About your traveling companion: Any friend of yours is a friend of mine, kdog.


    Highly recommend driving the Oregon Coast (none / 0) (#102)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:38:56 PM EST
    I think when I did it I drove mostly I-5 after San Fran up to Oregon for the sake of speed, then drove the coast through most of Oregon. Stunning.

    Be sure to see Monterey and Big Sur when you are in the San Fran area.


    Agree on Oregon (none / 0) (#116)
    by brodie on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:08:31 PM EST
    coast.  And don't forget to get out of the car and walk along the spectularly beautiful beaches -- but actually going into the often treacherous and vy cold water is not recommended.

    Monterey and Big Sur:  no more breathtakingly stunning coastal scenery anywhere else in the US.  Don't forget to stop at Nepenthe restaurant in Sur for decent grubs and unbelievable view down the coast.


    Thanks gang... (none / 0) (#125)
    by kdog on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:45:31 PM EST
    Can anybody reco a good stop point around half-way between San Fran and Portland?  Cool beach town, national park, whatever...

    I was thinking Gold Beach, OR (none / 0) (#140)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 07:06:43 PM EST
    Coos Bay isn't one of my favorite spots for vacation. It's a broken down port town. Not a place to explore the natural beauty of Oregon. More a cautionary tale about too much reliance on a natural resources extraction economy.

    Gold Beach is about half-way between SF and PDX. It's where the mighty Rogue River meets the Pacific Ocean. Beautiful beach, beautiful forest, beautiful river.


    A treasure trove... (none / 0) (#147)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 11, 2011 at 07:51:13 AM EST
    of information Talkleft is...thanks Casey & Don, lots of good stuff to run by my homey.

    If you stop in Seattle, Kdog, (none / 0) (#145)
    by shoephone on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 08:44:13 PM EST
    you gotta call me. I'll show you and your buddy around. And yes, good beer and a beautiful little hike will be included--but probably in reverse order!

    Nice... (none / 0) (#148)
    by kdog on Tue Jan 11, 2011 at 07:57:31 AM EST
    the main reason for the Seattle visit is to see a dear old friend who lives out there now with his new wife...so I hope you don't if we make it a party shoephone.

    Shoephone loves parties... (none / 0) (#151)
    by shoephone on Wed Jan 12, 2011 at 01:54:35 AM EST
    And Castroville, Calif., is a fun stop (none / 0) (#142)
    by Towanda on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 07:16:40 PM EST
    for artichoke lovers; it's the artichoke capital of the world.  A restaurant there has a menu of at least a hundred artichoke items.  I was in heaven.

    I was thrilled to discover (none / 0) (#144)
    by nycstray on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 08:34:10 PM EST
    I now live in a prime artichoke growing zone. Had no clue when I moved here. I plan on hitting the artichoke, asparagus and garlic festivals this year (just for starters!) Also, the wine festivals {grin}

    My artichoke plant has started sending up new growth. Should get a decent harvest off it this year and will plant a few more.


    Artichokes, asparagus, garlic (none / 0) (#146)
    by Towanda on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 09:32:49 PM EST
    and wine?  Wow.

    We grow snow.  Swap?


    After looking at BTD's list, (none / 0) (#29)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:27:51 PM EST
    I started thinking about all the states I've visited (some of which I lived in)- not just driven through, but visited.  In more or less chronological order:  Missouri, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Georgia, Florida, Utah, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, California, Oregon, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, DC, West Virginia, Virginia, Hawaii, Ohio, Indiana.  I think that's it.

    Yglesias Needs to Go .... (none / 0) (#44)
    by Robot Porter on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 01:57:41 PM EST
    on a Southern states road trip.

    I may not always like how they vote, but great people, great music, great food, beautiful countryside.

    And I don't think you can really understand America till you've spent some time in the deep South.

    My list (none / 0) (#46)
    by Ga6thDem on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:00:03 PM EST
    is rather small but I hope to change it when I retire. I've been to MS (depressing, at least the part I was in), LA (loved it) Alabama (forget it) FL (too hot most of the year) GA (where I live) SC (where i mostly grew up) NC, VA, DC, MD, RI, NY (only the city. I would LOVE to tour upstate), MA (Boston--okay. I went after the leaves had fallen), OH, WV, IL, WI (loved it), MN (too cold), NV (too much desert). So that leaves plenty left to see.

    Come out West (none / 0) (#60)
    by MKS on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:19:42 PM EST
    Pick any state.....Big open skies.....Majestic mountains and forests and deserts....Purple Mountains Majesties....

    Loughner parents barricaded in (none / 0) (#65)
    by waldenpond on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:35:48 PM EST
    It is being reported that the parents are refusing entry to the FBI and have blocked entry to their home (2x4s, plywood).

    interesting . . . (none / 0) (#67)
    by nycstray on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:38:27 PM EST
    I wondered if family sought help (none / 0) (#81)
    by waldenpond on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:55:03 PM EST
    The college notified the parents their child would not be considered for school unless he had a MH eval.  I wondered if they had tried to seek help.

    Info from neighbors are that the Loughners were not pleasant... not that they were unpleasant, just that they were not particularly friendly neighbors.

    Fox update... FBI is now inside.  I do not see wood over the windows on the photo displayed.


    Did Jared still live with ... (none / 0) (#84)
    by Robot Porter on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:57:29 PM EST
    his parents at this residence?

    Have no idea (none / 0) (#88)
    by waldenpond on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:04:56 PM EST
    but it would make sense to seek info from family and friends.  It is relevant to know if he is allowed to store possessions or use their computers.

    Yes, Jared Loughner lived (none / 0) (#93)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:18:40 PM EST
    in that house with his parents. And, since I heard reports yesterday about items the FBI found in that house, I am puzzled by these comments. Did his parents let the FBI in once, but balk at further intrusions?

    The same notion ... (none / 0) (#101)
    by Robot Porter on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:37:48 PM EST
    struck me.  Very odd.

    First search was pursuant to S/W. (none / 0) (#107)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:43:59 PM EST
    Yes, per yesterday's reports. (none / 0) (#94)
    by oculus on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:19:26 PM EST
    whoa. (none / 0) (#71)
    by Dr Molly on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:42:00 PM EST
    I'm sure they must be freaked out by the (none / 0) (#103)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:42:10 PM EST
    whole situation. Really hope for the best here.

    Looks like the FBI was let in (none / 0) (#110)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:52:49 PM EST
    I think the barricade may have been more to keep the media out of the yard.

    Love to go back to Hawaii one more time. (none / 0) (#69)
    by the capstan on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:41:05 PM EST
    I always loved Maui, but I think I am thru snorkeling in water that cold.  Maybe my son and I can re-visit all the islands (one or two a year) for one last time.  I'd love to 'do' Egypt, but I am not partial to being a tourist target.

    Has anyone else followed Hannibal's putative route over the Alps (open only in the summer)?  I think I would have felt safer on an elephant.

    Sadly, I have never visited a foreign country, (none / 0) (#74)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:44:00 PM EST
    not even Canada. It has just never worked out.

    I have done some U.S. travel. I've been to (in no particular order and not counting states I simply drove through): Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Ohio, Minnesota, Michigan, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Virginia, West Virginia, Washington D.C., Louisiana, Texas, Missouri, Colorado, Idaho, Washington, California, Arizona, Hawaii, Nevada and Oregon.

    Some were for pleasure, some for work and some were both.

    Places I want to go in the U.S.: NYC and upstate, the rest of New England, New Mexico, the Grand Canyon, the Black Hills, Montana, the Boundary Waters ( I so want to canoe here).

    Places I want to go outside the U.S.: many places in Canada (Banff, Lake Louise, British Columbia, Montreal, the Maritime Provinces, Quebec), most of Asia, all of Europe, just about any place in South America, northern Africa. And places I've probably forgotten to list.

    India (none / 0) (#104)
    by star on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:43:12 PM EST
     Pick the right climate to be there in. it is beautiful. even though cities like mumbai and Delhi are popular, i would skip em and do Kerala in the south most tip of India. totally green and the houseboats are awesome.
    If you like palaces and history, Rajasthan is a must see.

    Agreed (2.00 / 1) (#143)
    by Inspector Gadget on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 08:22:57 PM EST
    Spent 16 days in Kerala - stayed in a wonderful resort in Trivandrum - took that fascinating tour of Vivekananda Rock (rough ferry ride out there) off the very southern tip. A trip I would love to do again.

    Tom DeLay going to prison. (none / 0) (#77)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:47:32 PM EST
    I just caught a news flash that DeLay has been sentenced to 3 years in the joint for his money laundering crimes.

    I really thought he'd get probation.

    Here's some info on DeLay sentence. (none / 0) (#83)
    by caseyOR on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 02:55:37 PM EST
    From WaPo.

    In addition to the 3 years in the slammer, he got 10 years probation. Since he could have been sentenced to life, well...


    Yep, pretty light (none / 0) (#97)
    by brodie on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:22:14 PM EST
    sentence considering.

    Also in DeLay's favor:  the judge is allowing him to remain free on bail -- a mere $10k -- while he appeals.

    Chance for a later pardon, when things have quieted down a bit and during a slow news/holiday period, from Gov Goodhair?


    I think Gov. Goodhair is running for pres in 2012 (none / 0) (#106)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:43:54 PM EST
    Might not be good timing for Delay. Aww, I really feel sorry for him. Not.

    Well it can be (none / 0) (#113)
    by brodie on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:03:33 PM EST
    looked at politically in a coupla ways:  Gov Goodhair pardons Tommy to curry favor with the Right and Tea Party to gain traction, or attention, in a crowded GOP field.  

    Or, DeLay garners little sympathy for his plight during his appeal period of intense PR media efforts, and so Goodhair has no choice but to let things play out legally.  

    Or in his final months in office, Goodhair commutes the sentence to time served (a few months probably) and takes his lumps politically, figuring people will forget or not be as passionate in objection.


    I think the absence of any huge outcry (none / 0) (#120)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:31:37 PM EST
    at his conviction was telling. I don't think the tea partiers or current leadership care about him much. I bet Goodhair lets Tom stay out of sight in the pen.

    There is justtice in this world after all (none / 0) (#108)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:44:42 PM EST
    so rare I can't even spell it (none / 0) (#109)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 03:44:59 PM EST
    I've been to 40 states & DC (none / 0) (#118)
    by desmoinesdem on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:29:57 PM EST
    but never Puerto Rico. I'd like to go there someday, and also Hawaii and Maine.

    can they do this? (none / 0) (#119)
    by desmoinesdem on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:31:03 PM EST
    From the Arizona Republic:

    Family members of the suspect in the Gabrielle Giffords shooting on Monday blockaded themselves into their home north of Tucson and were refusing FBI agents' entry.

    At about 12:25 p.m., agents began banging on the blockade built with 4-by-4 double-thick plywood, yelling, "This is the FBI. Let us in." The blockade is preventing access to the front porch of the home.

    Can the family members be charged with obstructing a federal investigation?

    they let the FBI in the back door (none / 0) (#121)
    by ruffian on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:32:58 PM EST
    I posted a link in another thread. It seems to me that the barricade was more to keep the media off the porch than to keep the FBI out.

    Can't say (5.00 / 2) (#124)
    by Zorba on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 04:41:26 PM EST
    that I blame them for wanting to keep the media out.

    haven't seen as many states as i would like (none / 0) (#129)
    by CST on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:00:04 PM EST
    Been all around New England, mostly MA, NH and VT.  Actually haven't spent much time hanging out in CT but I've driven through it so many times I feel like I have.  Been to NY a lot, the city mostly but also upstate a few times.  Lived in PA for college.  Been to D.C. & NJ a few times.

    The only place west of the Mississippi I've been to is California (San Diego only).  So there's a whole lot of country I'd like to see out west.  Especially ski country!

    I once drove from Florida to Pitt.  So I've driven through Georgia, the Carolinas, and the Virginias.  West Virginia is by far the most stunning place I've ever driven through (Florida suuuucked driving, at least 95 in Florida).  I would like to see a lot more of the south too.

    Other than that - I went to a concert at Ohio State once and I went to New Orleans once when I was 17 - with my mom, still pretty cool though.

    Come on down! (none / 0) (#149)
    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jan 11, 2011 at 08:25:38 AM EST
    The south is a pretty varied place both geographically and probably every other way you can think of.

    Savannah (none / 0) (#150)
    by lilburro on Tue Jan 11, 2011 at 09:18:14 AM EST
    is great.  

    someplace warm (none / 0) (#130)
    by Capt Howdy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:15:20 PM EST

    "Way Out West in Kansas" (none / 0) (#131)
    by the capstan on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:21:01 PM EST
    "Folks don't stay out very late
    Way out West in Kansas,
    They take the sidewalks in at eight
    Way out West in Kansas"

    "The sun's so hot that eggs will hatch,
    way out west in Kansas;
    It popped the corn in a popcorn patch,
    way out west in Kansas.
    An old mule coming down the path,
    Saw the corn and lost his breath.
    Thought it was snow and froze to death,
    Way out west in Kansas"


    (Brought to East TN from Kansas sometime during the 20's)

    speaking of crappy weather (none / 0) (#133)
    by Capt Howdy on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:30:06 PM EST
    I grew up (none / 0) (#135)
    by jbindc on Mon Jan 10, 2011 at 05:45:47 PM EST
    In Michigan, but I've been to Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arkansas, Arizona (2 times), Kentucky, Georgia, Florida, Maryland, Tennessee, California (San Francisco), Hawaii (Oahu and the Big Island)Delaware, and DC.  I've lived in Texas and now Virginia.  Been to Windsor and Toronto, Ontario, Canada (and all the cities in between as I took the train), and Nogales, Mexico - many years before the border drug wars).

    I want to go all the way up the east coast - NY to Boston to Maine. I'd love to go to Puerto Rico, although I'm not a beach person.  Love to go to Los Angeles, Seattle, Minneapolis (in the summer!), Chicago (more than seeing the airport), Denver, Alaska, Boise, Vegas.  Basically, I want to see all 50 states. I'd also like to take a train ride across Canada.