What happens when the cool winds of Alaska meets up with the tropical breezes of Brazil, and a Yankee Clipper from New York State? I don’t know either, but we are about to find out. See you all in Eastern Canada!
”Now the Four Way Lodge is opened, now the Hunting Winds are loose,
Now the Smokes of Spring go up to clear the brain;
Now the Young Men’s hearts are troubled for the whisper of the Trues;
Now the Red Gods make their medicine again…
We must go, go, go away from here.
On the other side the world we’re overdue…”
—- Rudyard Kipling
Cheers, and by all means, Stay Beautiful!
It was time to leave New York, and head west. I had enough of flying for the time being, and decided that a more relaxed ride on Amtrak was in order. It’s possible that the idea backfired a bit. I had received some unwanted news just prior to boarding the train, and nothing allows you to sit & stew quite like a long train ride. Still, the Lake Shore Limited was a nice ride, although much of it overnight and in the dark.
I had to switch trains in Chicago, and spent a decent sized layover in Union Station. It’s a beautiful station, but I spent much of my time below grade. The people watching kept me entertained. A pigeon flew into the food court, which caused one of two reactions: 1) A child would be fascinated by the sudden appearance of the bird, and follow its path from table to table as it searched for dropped food. 2) An adult would spot the pigeon, which caused an immediate expression of horror, which was followed by trying to put as much distance between themselves and the rogue pigeon.
I spotted a teenage boy reading Steinbeck. He never saw nor reacted to the pigeon. He was probably reading “Of Mice and Men” for school, but he was so engrossed in the story, that he kept waving away questions from his siblings, like someone absentmindedly brushing off an annoying fly. It was a good sight to see, and it made my morning.
I was aboard the Empire Builder leaving Chicago. It’s an easier train to explore, with its two decks and afternoon departure from Union Station. The click-clack of the steel wheels on the rails, and the gentle swing of the train cars had started to do its work. The edge from the night before had dissipated. I played jazz through my headphones all across Wisconsin, which didn’t hurt matters any either. I had joined the dining car as we crossed the Mississippi River, and eventually succumbed to the “Origin Question”. Looking back, I probably should have said, “Minnesota”, when asked where I was from. Instead, I answered “Fairbanks”, and the questions flew from there. It’s quite hard to put that Genie back in the bottle once it is released, although I did make an attempt. Eventually, I warmed up to the questions, as they were genuinely interested in our state, and told a few stories that I had never shared before.
Near Bethel, New York:
The Curator and I took a trip over to Woodstock between chasing hockey pucks. The museum at the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts was closed on the day we arrived, but that did not keep us from searching out historical markers, and the like.
We found the Yasgur family home. Max Yasgur, a local dairy farmer, leased out one of his fields for the concert. He received plenty of threats for doing so, including calls to “burn him out” and cries to boycott his milk. Yasgur held to his principles, scolding neighbors for charging concert goers for water.
32 musical acts performed in front of over 400,000 people from August 15-18, 1969. Organizers of the festival told Bethel authorities that they expected 50,000 to show up.
The stage was down in the lower left of the above photo, and the entire hillside was filled with spectators.
The museum and art center seem to be first rate, although it was a cursory glance. Even though that was closed, the trip was still a fun drive through the Catskills and music history.
The Jimi Hendrix set list from Woodstock’s final day
The Corning Museum of Glass, photo credit: CMOG
The Curator and I stopped by the Corning Museum of Glass, where the Curator sand blasted a pint glass, after decorating it with symbols that had very deep meaning to him. After 40 minutes of soul searching, we were onto the actual museum.
A work titled “Carrion” in the contemporary section.
Some glass forms for liquor bottles, love the glass cannon barrel
The history of glass section, was my favorite part on CMOG, and I spent much of my time touring it.
We happened to hit the museum on one of their 2300 Degs fundraiser. The Red Hot Chilli Pipers were playing in the evening. Yes, you read that correctly. The famed Scottish band that rocks out in their kilts were there playing their bagpipes. A traditional Irish band was playing in another auditorium, where the glass craftsmen were making a pot of gold for St Patrick’s Day. Very impressive demonstration.
The Red Hot Chilli Pipers
The CMOG artists working on their pot-o-gold