Pacific Northwest / Washington State

Glass and painting juxtaposed

Rain and sunshine played tag the entire day—one minute pounding rain (not the gentle mist the Pacific Northwest is known for) the next intense sun.  I kept looking for rainbows, but never saw any. We started back at the tulip festival at Tulip Town.  They’d had a flood and most of their crop had been destroyed so their display was … Read More

San Juan Islands, Washington

Entering Friday Harbor

Despite rain forecasted for all day, we decided to head to the San Juan Islands.  A friendly waitress had given us a tip to take the state ferry to Friday Harbor, where we could walk off the boat and into an artsy town. When we left the hotel, it was misting. During the twenty-minute drive we passed through bright sunshine, … Read More

Tulips — The Skagit Valley Washington State

Field of tulips with mountains as backdrop

I had been scheduled to travel to Amsterdam April of 2020 to see the tulip festival.  The festival is globally renowned, especially Keukenhof Gardens. Covid cancelled those plans. Last fall I learned about a tulip festival in the Skagit Valley, north of Seattle.  That would be easier and safer, so I wrangled my friend Judy into going with me. The … Read More

Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania


I am a lover of gardens. There is no such thing as too many tulips, orchids, roses, trees, or bushes. Each garden is unique in the way it is laid out, the design of the plantings, water elements, structures, rocks and so much more. Despite visiting numerous gardens while on this road trip, my final stop had to be at … Read More

Richmond, Virginia


Murals and street art have definitely become a thing.  Or maybe it was always there, and I’ve just become very attuned to it. Drive or walk around Richmond and the murals are everywhere. When I went to Mamma J’s for dinner, I had to wait to get a table. While waiting, I walked around the area.  At every turn there … Read More

Charlotte, North Carolina

Nascar Racing

When in Charlotte do as the locals do—go to the Nascar Hall of Fame.  Nascar (stock car racing) is THE sport in North Carolina.  While it isn’t something I’ve ever been to, I’ve long wanted to go to a Nascar race, as a slice of American life I felt it was something important to experience. Somehow, I never got to … Read More

Charleston, South Carolina — Day Three

Geechee Gullah Interpreter

Much of today was spent at the Boone Hall Plantation. The property is gorgeous, every inch of it filled with history—some very sad, much quite unexpected and all of it thought provoking. Here are a few of the things I learned: The owners of Boone Hall and most other plantations in the area never lived on the property.  Instead, they … Read More

Charleston, South Carolina — Day two

View from formal garden at Middleton Plantation

The forecast was for rain, not as intense as last night, but intermittent showers all day.  What to do?  Well, breakfast first at Poogan’s Porch, the oldest restaurant in Charleston. To make it even better, Poogan was a rescued dog. I went for well-made grits and, a splurge, a biscuit. It was well worth the splurge. Leaving the restaurant, the … Read More

Charleston, South Carolina – Day One

Horse drawn carriage in front of Charleston mansion

The last time I was in Charleston immediately after hurricane Hugo (1989).  My father was living here, and I came down to help him pack up and move—the devastation from the storm was so bad he could no longer live in his home. Every roof tile was blown off and then it poured, creating a near river pouring onto his … Read More

Wilmington, North Carolina

Live Oak with Spanish moss

Wilmington, NC is definitely not to be confused with Wilmington, Delaware.  The Delaware city is home to many large banks and during my many business trips there was all about business. The North Carolina Wilmington is brimming with southern charm and operates at a leisurely pace. The first stop this morning was to the Airlie Gardens. It was closed throughout … Read More