Sunday, May 27, 2012

Bringing it Home

Today will be our last day on the road and we are heading home. We have been on the road for 16 days and will finish using the interstates for this leg. While I had a route planned, I simply charge up the GPS to take us home.

Just outside of Annville, PA sits the Indiantown Gap National Cemetery. This is a Tour of Honor site and it was on the way.

Right around noon time we stop for a bite to eat

Cross a familar bridge, the Tappanzee

Since it was on the way we picked up the Tour of Honor memorial in Westport, CT. It cost us $13 for the picture. The girl at the gate was unyielding about letting us get a picture.

The beginning of summer NE

Since it is on the way home MeAsWe wants to visit her cousin, because his Mom died while we were on the trip. Heading into Willimantic, the GPS beeps to tell us we are approaching a U S or A town.

A quick visit

The last stretch into the barn. Takes a while to get past the sign.

Finally hit home and log the final mileage. I calculated the trip to be right around 5,300 miles, the actual came right in on 5,195.

Even thou tomorrow is a day off and time to decompress, I know it is going to take awhile to download all the files from the Acer to the desktop. I crank it up and go and lie down to watch TV.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Let's Roll

While we have places to go and see today, the main objective is Flight 93 Memorial in Shanksville, PA. I have chosen not to show the other places we visited so as not to diminish the importance of this sight.  ( all pictures are clickable and will enlarge )

We visited here one other time and it was one of the most moving experiences in my life. Every time I hear someone is going to be in the area, I have told them F93 is a must see.

Shanksville sits almost to the Maryland border and east of Pittsburgh.

Flight 93 Memorial is all about those 40 passengers and crew members that forced the last of 4 planes down on 9/11. The plane crashed into a reclaimed coal strip mine, which is the site of F93. More reading here.

The area is very rural


Walk way to the Memorial

Items left by visitors in the tradition of the previous site

Stone wall with a section for each passenger

View down the wall and gate to the crash site

The rock is where the plane crashed looking thru the gate
The crash site

Looking back at the Memorial

I did a RR (ride report) on Flight 93 when we visited here in 2009. The old site was simply a 40 foot chain link fence, a tool shed, benches and some donated memorials. It sat up on the hill where the new VC will be going looking down at the crash site. The new site is eloquent, splendid but (in my opinion) sanitized. The old site was impactful, personal and brought tears to my eyes. I asked a ranger what happened with the old fence and he said that everything was carefully catalogued. There are over 50,000 pieces of personal articles left by millions of visitors at the old site. When the new visitor center is complete they will put some of the hats, ribbons, pins, and flags on display.

The 40 foot Fence

This is still a must see at least once in your lifetime. We all experienced that day in history. 

Friday, May 25, 2012

The are coming to take me away ...ha ha

Last night we landed in Fayetteville, WV to set up for sight seeing at Canyon Rim. I cut a bunch of miles out of our trip, mainly maybe USA towns without some specific place in mind. West Virginia is a wonderful riding state. I don't think there is a straight level road in the state. We essentially rode right up the middle of the state from Fayetteville to Morgantown in the north. For the most part it was Highway 16 and US 119. We did finally grab some interstate for the last 60 miles. ( all pictures clickable and will enlarge )

If you have never been to Canyon Rim, this is a must see. The roads to get here are fantastic and the roads to the bottom of the gorge are fun. The sights are unbelievable.

Descending down into the gorge. This use to be the road taken before the New River Gorge bridge was built

The bridge across the New River

Back out of the gorge

A MapSource view of the road down. Well worth the trip. It is something like 8 miles.

Next stop was Ansted WV for some Grand Tour Pics

West Virginia really has some wonderful roads and scenery

Right around 4pm we pulled into Weston WV and one of those signs was there.

As the sign says it is the largest hand cut stone building in the US. It is also the second largest in the world just behind the Kremlin in Russia. It's other name is the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum. It was a Kirkbride building like Worcester and Danvers State Hospitals in Massachusetts. It was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1990. The hospital has been featured on Ghost Hunters as well.

The backside.

Moving around front. The hospital is open for tours. We just wandered around the first floor  and did watch the video they had. I learned how to do a frontal lobotomy from the video. The procedure doesn't look all that hard. I believe the drug companies made the procedure obsolete and they are still making tons of money off its patients.

Some inside views

This nurse was one of the actual nurses at the hospital when it was opened. She had quite a few stories to tell and really quite interesting to talk to. She reminded me of the housekeeper in American Horror Story that aired in the fall of 2011.

We ended spending much more time at the hospital and headed straight to Morgantown. Thanks for riding along today.