I moved to San Francisco in 1983 and stayed for a couple of years. I was also in Victorville for a couple of months on a job during the summer of 1999. My oldest sister lived in Los Angeles for 20 years (?!). Over the years I have visited most of the places in California (not 'Cali'; that's a city in Colombia) worth visiting including LA, San Diego, the Mojave desert, San Joaquin Valley, Gold Rush Country, Yosemite, Mono Lake, Mt. Whitney, and the bristlecone pine area. There is a link to the official San Francisco website here and a link to the official California website here.

San Francisco was the first large city I lived in and it was an eye-opening experience. I felt a rush of energy every time I stepped out the door. The first month I was there I visited every corner of the city. This was also the first time I had seen steps carved into sidewalks. I found out how many colors it is possible to paint a curb and that the Golden Gate Bridge really is orange and that fireworks over the Bay seen from the Marin Headlands are as spectacular as you'd think. And it's true that the coldest winter you'll ever face is a summer in San Francisco. But for a couple of months in September and October San Francisco must be one of the nicest places to live on Earth. It's sunny and warm but not hot and there is a refreshing breeze as air rises inland and draws the sea air over the city.

Weather in San Francisco is fairly mild. Once or twice in the winter you'd get some gales packing winds of 90 mph as they blew in over 5000 miles of Pacific Ocean but there was only one thunderstorm in the two years I was there. I still remember the picture The Examiner ran on the front page the next day showing all these people on rooftops watching the storm. People from places with frequent thunderstorms would never stand on the roof to watch one. It only snowed once; the Marin Headlands got an eigth of an inch one winter.

Besides hills and a spectacular natural setting San Francisco is known for fog and earthquakes. The fog comes in off the sea and if you live out in 'The Avenues' the foghorn is your constant companion. During the summer the fog rolls in like clockwork after 2PM and the temperature can easily drop fifteen degrees. It was amusing to see tourists in shorts and T-shirts because you know they're thinking 'Wow! This is California!' but the fog rolls in and they're shivering.

I only experienced one significant earthquake while in San Francisco, a 5.7 that lasted about 25 seconds but seemed much longer. I was in the main branch of the library and at the time the upper floor stacks were a sort of suspended flooring consisting of steel rectangles filled with a translucent material. I remember watching the flooring moving in waves just like the ocean. That was interesting. 

Unfortunately most of my time in California was spent before I developed an interest in photography. Words and pictures are here.

I moved to Florida in 1986 and attended school (St. Petersburg College Class of '92) and learned the HVAC trade (Pinellas Technical Education Center '93) here. I lived in St. Petersburg, a city located at the lower end of the Pinellas County peninsula on the west coast. When I arrived downtown St. Petersburg was a ghost town after 6PM but later the downtown was redeveloped and became more attractive. One winter my brother came to visit and after driving around for a while he asked me to take him to the lot. I asked him "What lot?" "You know," he said, "the one where they keep the rolled-up sidewalks."

St. Petersburg has an absolutely charming waterfront on Tampa Bay that includes several museums, parks, a municipal pier with an inverted pyramid at the end, a bandbox of a stadium, a marina, and an airport. There are a number of bars and restaurants close to the waterfront and it is a great place to spend a day. St. Petersburg is also the home of the the MLB Tampa Bay Rays and the AFL Storm. You can link to the official St. Petersburg site here and the official Florida website here.

In Florida I learned about 'tropical weather' and how to use the refrigerator as a food safe and how to live in a subtropical climate without air conditioning. In fact, I never lived in a place that had air conditioning the entire ten years I lived there. None of my friends would come over to my place during the summer and I can't say I blamed them. I learned how to ride a bicycle competitively and had a brief fling with bike racing. I learned how to windsurf and how to shuffle my feet in the shallows to avoid the stingrays. You can read more about my experiences in Florida and see photos here.

In 2000 I was working for an engineering company and my boss and I were assigned to a project in Honolulu for the better part of a year. Thus I got to live rent-free in a condo in Waikiki with a grocery allowance and a paycheck. This was good stuff. Working in Hawai'i is pretty much like working anywhere else but the free time is a bit different. After work I'd go for a bike ride, which could be challenging depending on how strongly the tradewinds were blowing, and try to end up at Waikiki Beach to watch the sunset.

The first thing we did on arrival in Honolulu was get lost. The streets in Honolulu make perfect sense once you figure out the design intent but otherwise not so much. We had an intern with us leading to the joke 'How many engineers does it take to find Waikiki?'

Living in Hawai'i was an educational experience. The first weekend I was there I went to the library and asked for a history of Hawai'i. I believe the book I read was The Shoals of Time. I learned how to read Hawai'ian (pronounce every syllable), saw Don Ho at Waikiki Beach (!), found out where to buy the best aloha shirts (hint: not at Hilo Hattie's or the ABC store), found out that H-1 becomes a parking lot in the afternoon, and saw rainbows nearly every day including a triple rainbow. I also learned that there are a fair number of people who think that Capt. Cook is the worst thing since the plague and that there exists some not-so-subtle racism on the part of some Polynesians.  I found out what being a waterman means and that Spam goes with everything and what it means to have island fever.

You can check out my pictures and words here, and the official website for Honolulu here and the official Hawai'i website here.

My experience in New York came about from my father being stationed at West Point for two separate tours. The first time I was too young to remember much of anything but the second tour I was 8 - 10 years old and remember quite a bit.

This was my first experience with Boy Scouts and camping and fishing and doing a lot of things that are either illegal today or would have a lot of today's parents in a tizzy. It was about being a kid on a military base in a gorgeous setting in an environment where kids were pretty much left to their own devices. In our house we weren't allowed to watch TV and there were no computers or cell phones or any of a hundred modern distractions. What kids did was play outside. A lot. About the only time kids were inside was when it was raining or they were doing homework or chores. There weren't many fat kids, because no-one wanted to get picked last for baseball or kickball or endure the merciless taunting that came with being fat.

Several times a year my father would take the brood down to New York City. Only when I got older did I appreciate what a logistical undertaking looking after five kids in that environment was. The American Museum of Natural History was always a favorite (dinosaurs!) but we'd catch ballet at the Lincoln Center or tour the Statue of Liberty or go over to Staten Island. The subway was a bit of an adventure because it was considerably more dilapidated than it is now.

Years later I was doing a job in Ft. Monmouth, NJ and drove up to West Point one weekend. You can read about that here. The official West Point site is here and the official New York site is here.

We moved to Wake Forest, North Carolina when I was ten. At the time I think that there were about 3500 people in town. It was definitely on Tobacco Road. I graduated from high school here (Wake Forest-Rolesville Class of '81) and bought my first business, The Sub Station, in Zebulon with a partner.

Wake Forest is notable for having the Southestern Baptist Theological Seminary smack in the middle of town. This was the former campus for Wake Forest University before they moved 100 miles west to Winston-Salem. We lived in arguably the nicest neighborhood in town directly across from the Wake Forest College birthplace.

The other notable feature in Wake Forest was the railway that bisected the town. Like most Southern towns the railroad divided the town into Black and White sections. The difference between the two was striking. There were two swimming pools in town, one in each section. One year the pool on the 'white' side received a major renovation and the other pool...didn't. The idea was that everyone in town would use the renovated pool but in practice that's not how it worked out. In fact, the Middle School I attended (Junior High at the time) was the former Black High School.

Everything in town was within reasonable walking distance or easy bike riding distance. Everybody knew everybody. If you were walking down the street it was not unusual for someone to stop and offer you a ride. It was common for half of the student body to be out for the first few weeks of school while their families got the harvest in. It was just as common for students to bring their firearms to school in their cars or trucks because they'd gotten some dove hunting in before class and everybody said 'sir' and 'ma'am'.

My time in North Carolina helped me reaffirm my Southern roots (both of my parents are from the South) and discover that I was pretty darn good on a trumpet. I did the usual boyhood things. I worked in the tobacco field, played basketball and city leauge soccer, drove a tractor to cut brush and grass, rode horses, and when I was older drove way too fast on rural dirt roads. There are additional words and picture here.

The official site for Wake Forest is here and for North Carolina here

Oregon is where I live now and have for the past nine years. I transferred to Corvallis when the company I was working for bought an engineering firm there. I actually lived in Albany and bought my first house there. I attended Oregon State University (Class of '06) after the company folded and would still be living in the Willamette Valley if there was any work there. I moved to Beaverton where I currently reside.

Oregon is a beautiful and varied state but has only seen European settlers since the 1830's and there are fewer than 4 million residents in the state. The Willamette Valley from Eugene to Portland is where the vast majority of the state's residents live. East of the Cascades is the starkly beautiful high desert country and the Coast Range on the western side of the state goes right to the Pacific Ocean.

Of the four major West Coast cities I have lived in I have come to like Portland the best. Oregon in general and Portland in particular have a tendency to pat themselves on the back a lot. Other transplants that I have talked to have also noticed this. This is not an especially attractive trait. That said, Portland is a very accessable and walkable city with a very good transit system and an endless variety of things to discover. The climate is mild; it doesn't get to hot or too cold for long and while it is cloudy a lot it doesn't actually rain any more than most other temperate zone cities.

And yes, Portland is Beervana. I would put Portland up against any city in the world for the sheer variety and quality of the brews here. If you want to try the Portland bar scene and let the local transit system do the driving, you can access a couple of maps I created here and here. At one time my middle sister worked for a beer magazine in Chapel Hill, NC and when she found out I lived in the Portland metro area she said "I'm jealous. That's the beer capital of the world."

Additional verbiage and pictures are here.

The Oregon official website is here and the Beaverton site is here. Okay, Portland is here.

We lived in Columbia, South Carolina between tours at West Point. My father was actually based at Ft. Jackson while he toured Southeast Asia for three years but we lived in the Forest Acres neighborhood of Columbia. This was a very nice, tree-lined neighborhood and not unusual for a Southern city the Black part of town was a block behind us and had, as I recall, dirt roads and no trees.

Columbia was most notable for the violent thunderstorms that we'd get every summer.  I have seen some real doozies in Florida but for frequency of violent storms Columbia wins hands down. This is the only place I've seen ball lightning. It looked like a baseball-sized orb of blue-white light moving along the chain-link fence between us and the neighbors and when it exploded it shook the house. On occasion the basement would flood and then my Mom would call the fire department to come pump out the house. Bet you couldn't get that to happen today.

When my father was home we'd go on family excursions to Lake Marion and Myrtle Beach. Myrtle Beach was known as the 'Grand Strand' and was famous as a place to find shark's teeth. I went back to Myrtle Beach years later and found that it had been built out right to the water's edge. That was disappointing.

Columbia was where I learned to detest pine trees. We had several in the yard and they were always dropping something. Needles, pinecones, branches; these were some trashy trees. It seemed like I was always raking the yard.

I learned to ride a bike in Columbia and saw Neal Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walk on the moon and got turned on to Star Trek. My mother was a member of a book club and she received a collection of the 100 greatest books in the English language and I read every one.

Sorry, no pictures of South Carolina and no words.

The official website of South Carolina is here and for Columbia is here.

Texas should probably have an asterisk. I don't even know where we lived. We were stationed there after Virginia so I did live there but I was very young and we didn't stay long. All I really remember is that it was hot and dry and dusty and we had a blue Opel. I still remember the smell of that car on a hot day. I also remember visiting my aunt and uncle in League City and going out on their boat.

I did visit parts of Texas later on and you can see what words and pictures there are here.

The official site for Texas is here.

Virginia should really have asterisk. For some reason we were stationed at Newport News after returning from Germany. I think we were there just long enough for my brother to be born.

During our second tour of West Point we did vacation in Newport News for a couple of weeks in a house my father traded with another family. There was a canal right behind the house thirty feet from the back door. We caught a lot of crab there. I remember my father cooking some crab in a 30 gallon trashcan with a couple of cinder blocks on top and the crab forcing the lid off as they were being cooked. The most notable feature was the fact that we were on the approach path to the Naval Air Station and judging by the altitude of the aircraft not all that far from the runway. Funny thing was, after a week you didn't notice the noise.  

No words and no pictures for Virginia.

The official site for Virginia is here and for Newport News here.

Washington was the first place I lived in the Northwest. I moved to Seattle from St. Petersburg in 1996 and it was a dramatic difference but that was what I was looking for. I had left St. Petersburg because I couldn't take another summer and there was no money there. I did get a job lined up before I moved so that helped. A couple of weeks after I arrived it snowed 7", which surprised me. My understanding was that it rarely snowed in the city proper. I had to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe, including what I call the 'Northwest jacket' which is a durable piece of outerwear that is waterproof, windproof, snowproof, breathable, and warm. Most people in the Northwest have some variation of this clothing and it was the most expensive piece of everyday clothing I'd ever bought but in this climate as necessary as sunglasses in Florida.  

My first impression of Seattle was the traffic. The city is geographically constrained so there aren't too many ways to route roads. I lived in the Greenwood neighborhood and worked in Kirkland so the commute could take a while. Later I moved to West Seattle and it once took me three hours to get home from a job in Bellevue. I started looking for another place to live the next day.

The second thing I noticed was the price of housing. I had come to Seattle with a few thousand dollars and the plan was to buy a modest house. That plan evaporated as soon as I looked at the real estate listings. Even rentals were far more expensive than I was accustomed to.

I liked the fact that Seattle has very distinct neighborhoods. I lived within walking distance of the business district of the neighborhood so I didn't really need to go anywhere else. The post office, bank, library, grocery store, restaurants, bars, and retail outlets were all right there. It was like living in a small town in a large city.

In Seattle I learned that it is entirely possible to hide a 14,000 foot mountain. I moved there in November and didn't lay eyes on Mt. Ranier until April. Mt. Hood in Portland is a pleasant little mountain but Mt. Ranier is a statement. Even 70 miles from the city it just dominates everything around it, making the 5 and 6,000 foot peaks of the surrounding Cascades look like foothills.

I learned to love the Northwest in Washington. I won't live anywhere else. One guy I worked with in Oregon had lived in the same city his entire life to date and was considering moving to another part of the country just to see what it was like. I told him not to bother; he was not going to find another part of the country that was better than the Northwest. I enjoyed the fact that just an hour or so east of Seattle I could be camping or shooting or cycling in some of the most spectacular settings in the country.

The one thing I was not so enamored of in Seattle was the weather. During the fall, winter, and spring you are going to work and returning home in the dark. From October to May the cloud cover is more or less constant and that coupled with less than 8 hours of 'daylight' in winter makes for some gloomy weather. It is not unusual in the winter for the streetlights to remain on all day. In May there is a sort of fake summer where it will be sunny and warm for a few weeks and then the clouds return until early July. I quickly learned that in Seattle if you don't do anything in the rain then you don't do anything at all. Curiously enough just 200 miles to the south Portland enjoys markedly better weather with about 6 more weeks of sunshine than Seattle. When summer does arrive Seattle is transformed. Daylight stretches to 16 hours and you can appreciate the stunning natural setting that the city enjoys. You feel almost guilty about going to work because you know that nine months of winter is just around the corner.

Washington State words and pictures are here.

Washington state official website here and Seattle here.

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

               Places I have lived

 

Of the 50 States I have lived in 10 and visited 30 others plus D.C. The States I have lived in are green and the visited ones are buff.

Clicking on a state flag below will take you to a place where you can see whatever I have to say about that place plus photos if available.

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Hit the 'Home' key to return to the top.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Alabama

My time in Alabama has been a drive-through experience. I have seen the USS Alabama anchored in Mobile and I know that the I-10 tunnel under Mobile Bay has the gradient of a roller coaster. I've also seen the Wienermobile in Mobile.

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Arizona

I've been to Arizona on several occasions. I like the state as a place to visit but I'm fairly sure that I don't want to live there: it's too hot.

I've visited Page, Flagstaff, Tuscon, Phoenix, Yuma, the Painted Desert, the Petrified National Forest and Sunset Crater. My only view of the Grand Canyon was when a Southwest Airlines pilot treated the passengers to a fairly low flight right down the center. That was fun.

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Arkansas

What I've seen of Arkansas has been generic tree-covered countryside. And Little Rock, which is one of the more depressing cities I've been to.

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Colorado

The first time I traveled to Colorado, I though that here was a state that knew how to sell itself. What Colorado has is 150 miles of desert on one side and 150 miles of grassland on the other and a relatively narrow mountain range down the center. But if you ask most people what they think of when they think of Colorado they will say "The Rockies".

Fair dues, the Rockies are some seriously spectacular mountains. I've gone camping in the Estes Park area and very nearly driven off a gravel road into 1500 feet of nothing. Colorado was the first place I saw narrow mountain roads sans guardrails and reached 10,000 feet in a car. The National Dinosaur Monument is located at the extreme western side of the state and well worth a visit.

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Connecticut

I've traveled along the coast of this state and there was still a lot of evidence of the Yankee whaling days. Many of the buildings are typical of what most people think of as New England architecture. I would like to visit the Submarine Museum in New London sometime.

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D.C.

I have only been to the Nation's capital once, and you can read about that here. I expect that I will visit several more times.

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Delaware

Delaware is known as 'The First State' and one of its quirks is that vehicle license plates are numbered sequentially. The lower the number, the higher the status.

We had an office in Wilmington and while parts of the city are rather nice our office was in a bar-the-windows neighborhood.

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Georgia

Georgia is the largest state East of the Mississippi and having driven around this state for 40 years I can attest to this. I can say that I have never gone to Atlanta without running into road construction. I can also say that the Atlanta airport is not as bad as people make it out to be. The old joke in the South is that if you die and go to heaven you have to change planes in Atlanta.

At times I've had relatives in Augusta and Thomasville and my father grew up on a farm in East Point which at the time was miles from Atlanta but is now an exit on the freeway inside the perimeter beltline.

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Idaho

The highway department in Idaho has arranged rest stops on the Interstate so that they are generally co-located with some interesting geographical or historical feature. So I have seen lava flows only 4000 years old and a place where a tribe of Natives completely destroyed a U.S. Army unit and there is a place where you can see the Grand Tetons in Wyoming. I also know a road where the sound of your tires at speed sounds exactly like a fan belt about to let go.

I've spent time with a friend in Cour d'Alene and seen the militia practicing in the hills and driven for miles on fire trails in the mountains. And it should be noted that if the name Idaho Falls was accurate it would be Idaho Spillway.

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Illinois

Much of what I've seen of Illinois is about what you'd expect: unbroken farmland. There are some nice wooded places at the southern tip. The two notable things I've seen in Illinois was the 'golf ball' water tower painted to look like a golf ball on a tee and the first time I flew into O'Hare I thought "This looks just like Flight Simulator." 

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Kansas

Kansas is not, as many think, completely flat. There are some hills, well, elevation changes. Kansas does grow a lot of stuff, and they want you to know it. Along the highways there are many signs promoting Kansas and Kansas crops. Typical offerings are  'A farmer feeds 47 people and you.' and 'Kansas, the land of ah's'.

I have camped on property after assuring the farmer that I would be gone by 0600 (I was) and gotten thoroughly lost in the Kansas countryside. I have not, as yet, seen a tornado.

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Kentucky

The only part of Kentucky I have seen is the western tip of the state. This is an area of wooded hills and a nice recreational area known as the Land Between the Lakes. The city of Paducah also has a nice 3-arch truss bridge over the river.

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Louisiana

I spent four months working at a job in Ft. Polk, and I've been to Louisiana on other occasions, so I've seen a good bit of the state. When I found out I would be working in Louisiana my first thought was "Allright! I'm going to eat well for four months!" And I did.

On weekends I'd drive around because there wasn't much to do in Leesburg if you didn't want to go to the strip club. You can read about one such trip here and see other notes on the state here.

Louisiana is also a place where some old habits die hard. I once heard an older gentleman say "Them colored boys play pretty good basketball." In 2000.

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Maine

Maine was part of my 'Tour De New England' when I spent a weekend visiting all seven New England states. I only went as far as Kennebunkport because I wanted to see where H.W. hung out.

Like Kansas, Maine is not shy when it comes to self-promotion. Just across the New Hampshire border is a sign that says "If you had a business in Maine you'd be home by now." I would like to go back Down East and check out more of the state, especially the northern section.

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Maryland

Maryland has the sort of scenery you'd expect in this part of the country; coastal wetlands and pine woods on the ocean and Bay side and rolling farmland west of the Baltimore - D.C. corridor. The most notable thing that happended to me in Maryland was that I got lost for three hours in the countryside.

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Massachusetts

Most of my experience in Massachusetts has been in the Boston area, which you can read about here.

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Mississippi

Most of my time in Mississippi has been in the southwest corner of the state, which you can read about here, and I have traveled along the Gulf Coast. Here there are towns with fun-to-say names like Pascagoula and Biloxi.

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Missouri

The first time I visited Missouri was a drive from Kansas City to St. Louis. The state motto is 'The Show Me State' and I was wondering when it would show me something interesting, as all I saw was endless miles of rolling woods.

That all changed when I got to St. Louis and saw the East Coast-influenced architecture, the Gateway Arch, and the terrifying traffic that inhabits the city. No fewer than six Interstate highways converge in downtown St. Louis and trying to juggle a map while watching for signs and avoid other drivers at freeway speeds is nerve-wracking. When I got across the Mississippi river I pulled into the first restaurant I came to and stopped to collect myself. It was intense.

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Montana

I have only visited the western third of this huge state but even that experience was enough to show me why this is called Big Sky country. The landscape is mostly vertical and the sky just goes on forever. Towns are few and far between and most of the exits are for ranches.

Montana used to have my favorite speed limit signs:"Reasonable and prudent". I once asked a Highway Patrol officer on a clear sunny day with temps in the 40's what a reasonable speed was that day. His response was that "If you were doing over 80 I'd probably stop you and talk to you." Do tell.

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Nevada

Nevada is a large state with wide-open spaces interspersed with desert mountain ranges. Fuel management is a critical skill. There are more than a few places on the map marked with towns and there is . . . nothing. You do not want to wind up in a situation here. I once drove an entire day and saw one other car.

I haven't been to Reno or Las Vegas except to change planes. McCarren International in Las Vegas is not for the sleep deprived. The slot machines and their attendent ding-ding-ding is everywhere.

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New Hampshire

I have seen a pretty good chunk of this state, from the southeastern section around Portsmouth to the bucolic central part of the state to the spectacular White Mountains. Unfortunately the signature symbol of the state, the Old Man of the Mountains, was destroyed in a rock slide, but New Hampshire still has much to recommend it.

You can read about my wanderings through the state during the Tour De New England.

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New Jersey

New Jersey has an image problem. Mention 'New Jersey' and most people think of the heavily urbanized Newark - Camden corridor. The state motto 'The Garden State' seems a cruel joke.

But there is another New Jersey. This New Jersey is one of rolling farmland in the northwest to the isolation of the Pine Barrens in the southeast. In much of New Jersey 'The Garden State' fits quite nicely.

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New Mexico

When I visited New Mexico I wasn't sure what to expect. I thought that it would be a lot like Arizona. What I found was grasslands in the East and desert in the West. At one time on sections of I-40 you could tune to a radio station and listen to Ricardo Montelbaun describe the features you were passing through.

Albuquerque is an interesting town that has a gnarly approach from the east and one of the longest, straightest grades I've seen west of town. There are signs along the Interstate on the east side of town admonishing people not to stop by the side of the road and collect rocks.

There are several Navajo reservations in the western part of the state and they give credence to the theory that if there was a God-forsaken piece of land, a reservation was placed there. In marked contrast is the crossing of the Continental Divide at about 7000 feet where the sky looks close enough to touch and the beauty of the Painted Cliffs into Arizona.

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Oklahoma

My perception of Oklahoma was that it was flat and covered with cattle, cowboys, and oil wells. While it certainly has plenty of those it also has the Arbuckle Mountains in the southern part of the state, which seemed incongruous. I certainly wasn't expecting elevation changes here.

Oklahoma at one time had my favorite highway sign located westbound on I-40: Clinton 69. There is a town of Clinton and I spotted the sign before Mr. Clinton's pecadillios became public knowledge. I sometimes wonder if it's still there.

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Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania is a state with a lot going on. It's defining geographic feature is the Appalachian Mountains and it also features the beautiful Delaware Water Gap, the mighty Susquehanna River, and Pittsburg, where the Monongehela and Alleghany rivers merge to form the Ohio river.

I have traveled through Pennsylvania since I was a child. I remember how dirty Pittsburgh used to be and how I was amazed at the transformation years later. I have traveled many a mile on the Turnpike and visited Phildelphia and Gettysburg and the Amish country around Lancaster. I have enjoyed some memorable times in this state and look forward to many more.

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Rhode Island

Yes, Rhode Island is small. I-95 runs on a diagonal through a rectangular state and you are still through in less than an hour. The two things I noticed were the striking architecture of the state Capitol building and that at the time of my visit the Rhode Island Highway Patrol was equipped with Chevrolet Suburbans.

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Tennessee

I have traveled the length and breadth of this state from the rolling hills in the west to the mountains in the east. I can say that it is pretty darn hot and humid in the summer; I've never been there in the winter. You can get great BBQ in Memphis and see impressive scenery in Knoxville and Chattanooga.

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Utah

Utah ranks high on my list of favorite states. I've visited and gone camping here on several occasions and always been impressed by the variety of scenery and the hospitality of the people.

On one occasion I was camping in the vicinity of Ogden when a sheriff's deputy pulled up. Aviator sunglasses, cowboy hat. There was no-one around but me and him. At the time I had California plates and thought "Oh man, I'm in for it now." He said "Whatcha doin' here, boy?" "Just spending the night, sir." "Well, we've only got one rule around here." "What's that?" "Have yourself a hell of a good time!" And he left. And I did.

I've visited Zion National Park and Salt Lake City and the beautiful horse country around Ogden. I am looking forward to my next visit.

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Vermont

I actually haven't seen much of Vermont. A trip down I-91 and a family trip as a child to Lake Champlain have been it.

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West Virginia

West Virginia is another state I've spent considerable time in. Mostly on family trips and later on trips as an adult. The state is pretty much defined by the Appalachian Mountains. It is for the most part quite lovely but there are places around the mining operatons where it is less so. Still, I would think that the residents prefer jobs to the alternative.

I once had a friend who lived in a town in one of the hollers and there was one road into town over the mountain and you did not want to drive that road at night. The town residents went in together to buy an antennae for the mountaintop so that they could get TV reception. The church was small and the congregation wore the same clothes they worked in because there's not a lot of call for suits in that part of the world. There was a woman who grew corn and sold it by the side of the road. It was, without doubt, the best corn I have ever eaten.

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Below are the places I've visited. Some places I've spent more time in than others but I have something to say about all of them and there are occasional links to expositions. If there are any pictures available you can click on the thumbnails for the full-size image.

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