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Providence, Westport, Newport

Flying the Edge of America

Sunday, August 10, 2008: Providence, Rhode Island

The sun was shining for us as we flew out of Bar Harbor airport this morning. It was not long in to the flight before the infamous east coast weather surrounded us in bubbling cumulous clouds once again. But it was not a bad flight, compared to some we have had recently, and we got a great view of Boston as the air traffic controllers vectored us all over their airspace and right through some very large clouds. Eventually we landed at Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Interestingly, just after we landed an aircraft reported an emergency and we watched as the fire trucks rolled out on the runway to meet the injured bird. It turned out the throttle cable had broken on the airplane. We watched as it touched down without incident and the fire trucks chased it down the runway. The odd part of this story is that about a year ago I took Julia on her fist flight in 51-Juliet, which was also her first flight in a light airplane. We flew out on what we call the Bay Tour at Oakland airport which takes you for a wonderful tour of San Francisco. After buzzing the city we head for Petaluma, to buy the obligatorily $100 hamburger. Everything was going well and Julia seemed to be OK with the new experience until in the landing approach the "throttle cable" on 51-Juliet broke and we had to make a power off landing. This was Julia's first experience with general aviation flight. Today brought all of these memories back for us; we could not help but laugh a bit.

Providence Flight Video

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Capital Building.

We went to a movie for the first time in a long while today. We saw Hancock; and it was not too bad. We spent the rest of the day visiting with family and friends which we enjoyed immensely.

The family.

First on our list was a visit with Julia's cousin Rod and his wife Yasmin and their two children Alex and Leila. I had met Rod's mum and dad when I was in England earlier this year and Rod reminded me of his dad. We had a great time chatting and taking the kids to the park. Thanks for spending time with us Rod and Yasmin it was splendid to meet you all.

The friends.

Later that evening we had dinner with David, Sandy, Claire, and Walter. It was so good to see everyone again it had been a long time since I had seen Claire and Walter and the last time I saw David and Sandy was just before my wife Mina died in 2006. Mina went to Brandeis University with some and met others of the group while she lived in Boston. We all used to go on vacation together; the last one was to Positano in southern Italy. It was wonderful to see you, all thanks for taking the time to drive from Boston to Providence to have dinner with Julia and I.

Julia and I made our way back to the hotel and found a rabbit feeding on the grass lawn in front of the lobby; how odd.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008: Westport, Massachusetts

Enjoying a glass in Tom's garden.

We went for a lovely walk down one of the walking paths in Providence in the morning. In the good part of town (the side where the university is) the houses are wonderful, many quite old, and most of the Saltbox House design. The other part of town, which is across the river, is not so nice. It looks like it had an industrial focus at one time but it is now mainly rundown with a glimmer of rejuvenation.

After this we drove out to Westport Massachusetts to visit with Julia's good friend Tom and his mum Sophie. The trusty NAV-Sheila got us there with a minimal of "recalculating" and as we traveled the clouds cleared up a bit. We spent a terrific afternoon together and ate lots of great food (that Tom had prepared for us) not to mention all of the good wine that was consumed.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Horse Neck Beach.

The two of us went for a terrific walk along Horse Neck Beach in Massachusetts this morning. The beach was clean and the water too. Sunbathers crowded all along the shore to soak up the fleeting sun and some even swam in the cool ocean waters. This walk was somehow highly invigorating to both of us.

Newport Cliffs.

After this pleasant experience we drove to Newport in Rhode Island. Newport is a touristy place but its claim to fame are the many colossal mansions the dot the high cliffs above the bay. We walked the cliff walk which took us along these cliffs and gave us spectacular views of the ocean and the amazing mansions. Even though these homes are enormous most of them were at one time or another only summer retreats for their owners.

After this we drove back to Tom's home in Massachusetts where we joined Tom, his mum, sister, and brother in-law for another fantastic meal. Much wine was drunk by all and lots of gourmet food consumed before we bid everyone goodbye and returned to our hotel; thank you Tom.

Newport Cliffs Video

Trip stats

Obama: 16

McCain: 3

Undecided: 2

Miles Hiked: 138

Miles Flown: 5,232

States Visited: 17

Towns Visited: 24


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