They say the best camera you can have is the one you have with you. While antiquing on the Oregon coast over the weekend we ran into something we’ve never seen before – Railroad Motorcars, or speeders as they’re sometimes called. The only camera I had with me was the one on my phone, so here are some so-so pictures of some really cute rail cars.
These cute railcars are owned by individuals who get together for excursions on the rails. These were originally used to inspect the rails for defects. They replaced the hand pumped maintenance cars from years ago. Recently, they’ve been replaced by Hy-Rail vehicles, the pickup trucks you see running on the rails.
Even though they only reach a top speed of 30 mph, they were called speeders because they traveled so much faster than the hand pump cars that preceded them.
Motorcar owners belong to clubs that obtain permission to use the rails for excursions that range from one day to over a week across the US and Canada. You can see a full list of excursions on the NARCOA web site.
The speeders were were big enough for a couple of people. Some were hard-sided while others had canvas around the back and sides.
This was a nice surprise encounter on an otherwise rainy day on the Oregon coast.
I recently traveled to Oahu, HI on business and Flat Kendall tagged along. She had a good time checking out the beaches. Kendall’s not a big fan of hot weather, but she was a good sport about it all. Even though I was working in Honolulu, I chose to stay over in Kailua. It’s a lot quieter and less busy over there. It’s also where President Obama chooses to stay on vacation.
There was a big accident on H1, the highway I had to take to get to Kailua, so we took the long way around the edge of the island. I pulled off everywhere I could to take pictures.
Those are snorkelers you see over near the rocks. Upon closer inspection of the water, I saw two sea turtles!
Can you see the turtle?
As you can see, it was a bit rainy and cloudy while we were there. There was no lack of hot, though. I forgot that most houses don’t have air conditioning, so it took some getting used to in order to be able to sleep.
On my last day there, I found this calendar in the ABC store. Looks like Flat Kendall isn’t the only Cavalier enjoying Hawaii.
Flat Kendall had a great time in Oahu. I wonder where she’s off to next.
While Flat Kendall was busy lounging on the beaches of Maui, we packed her up and took her on vacation with us to the Florida Keys. We always make sure we stop at the World Wide Sportsman in Islamorada to check out the latest in sunglasses and beach wear. There’s a restaurant there, as well as a place to wet your whistle.
From there we headed south to the Seven Mile Bridge in Marathon. We once rode our bikes over this bridge when we did Bubba Fest, a bike tour from Key Largo to Key West and back.
There’s a new (since we were last there) restaurant/tiki bar/pool bar at the north (east) end of the bridge. We stopped to have a drink and do some people watching.
At a stop at the Lorelei in Islamorada we found some pretty weird boats – a pink Cadillac boat and a pirate ship. Both were available for hire.
A vacation to the Florida Keys wouldn’t be complete without lots and lots of relaxation. This is the view from the sun deck by the pool at the condo where we like to stay.
Flat Kendall went on lots of adventures while visiting the Keys. Be sure to stop back over the next few days to see what else she was up to.
Flat Kendall and I traveled to San Diego this week to soak in a little sun. It was a nice change from the cold, rainy weather we’ve had in the Pacific Northwest. When I was in San Diego for the BlogHer conference last August I didn’t get a chance to see much. So, this time Flat Kendall and I went the tourist route and saw as much as we could.
We started out with the Old Town trolley tour to get an overview.
We stopped in Little Italy for lunch.
Then, it was off to Old Town.
The trolley tour wasn’t as good as ones I’ve taken in other cities, but it gave me an idea of where I wanted to visit on the other days I was there. The weather was cool but sunny, perfect for us NW girls.
Last week I stayed at the Kimpton Firesky Resort in Scottsdale, AZ while on a business trip. While I’ve eaten in the restaurants associated with the Kimpton hotels here in Portland and attended dog-focused events at the hotels, I’ve never stayed at a Kimpton hotel before.
All of the Kimpton hotels are pet friendly, and they don’t charge anything extra for your pet to stay in your room with you. Everyone working at the hotel was extremely friendly. I’d definitely return if I find myself in the area again.
This past week found me on the road in Omaha, Nebraska. Kendall couldn’t come along so I took Flat Kendall with me to explore the town.
They have a nice Old Market area that has lots of shops and restaurants.
Down by the waterfront they have a couple of slides you can use in lieu of the stairs. We just had to try it. When’s the last time you’ve been down a slide?
I was there for the 4-H Extension conference. Here’s Flat Kendall hanging out with the blow up mascot.
Of course, she found the one place that had dog treats. I brought some home for the real Kendall. The treats are all natural and they can only be purchased through 4-H members. They also had horse treats and cat treats.
Here she is hanging out at the Verrnier booth. She wasn’t eligible for the gift certificate, though.
On the way out Flat Kendall found the high end dog treats at the Omaha Steaks kiosk.
If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you know that I travel a lot for work. I go to some fun and interesting places, but Kendall has to stay home with the rest of the family while I travel. Well, that was true until I made a Flat Kendall! Now she’s able to travel to the far reaches of this great country of ours.
The idea for a Flat Kendall started at the BlogHer conference this past summer, where I hooked up with a number of pet bloggers. They were easy to find by the Flat Pets they had standing on their tables. I was directed to DIY Flat Pet for instructions on how to make my own Flat Kendall.
I searched through all of the photos I have of Kendall looking for just the right one for her Flat Pet. And here she is…
She looks bigger here than she actually is. I printed out an 8 x 10″ picture and then mounted it on foam core. It has a kickstand so that it’ll stand up by itself. It’s a great size because it’ll fit right into my computer bag while traveling.
I can’t wait to show you all of the adventures we go on.
Don’t forget about the giveaway over on Friday’s blog post. You still have three days to enter.
Last weekend we ventured to eastern/central Oregon in search of some sun and warm weather. Summer still hasn’t arrived in the Willamette Valley, and we thought we could escape the predicted rain by heading east. Usually, once you get east of the Cascades, the chance of rain drops dramatically. We camped while we were over there and pictures will be posted later this week of one of our favorite campgrounds.
On Saturday afternoon we could hear thunder in the distance and the sky was getting quite dark. We don’t get many thunderstorms west of the Cascades, so we were torn as to whether we should hang out and watch the storm or head over the Columbia River to the Maryhill Winery. The winery won out, so we battened down the hatches and headed a bit east.
As we drove along the Columbia on the Washington side, the skies opened up. It poured and poured. When we arrived at the winery, people were huddled under the little bit of covered area they had. There was a small band playing on the patio. We hung out inside for a bit, did some wine tasting, and some wine buying until the rain subsided. The views from the winery are amazing.
If you happen to make it out to the Biggs Junction/Goldendale exit on I-84, take a short detour up the hill on the Washington side to the Maryhill Winery. The museum next door is pretty interesting, too.