Utsjoki, Lapland – Northern Finland

Posted by Pat on December 8, 2019 in Travel |

5-6 December 2019

Thursday – feeling surprisingly good for being dragged 50’ by a pack of huskies

We meet this morning at 9:30, just at the dawn of civil twilight. The southeastern sky is a palette of pinks, reds and golds. The terrain is white as far as I can see. Trees are sculpted and boughs laden with snow. The road is one white path edged by tall berms. Snowy white ptarmigan blend into their equally white environment. The occasional group of reindeer dig in the drifts for food or wander across the road appearing very unconcerned about automobiles.

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Utsjoki, Lapland – Exploring Suomi

Posted by Pat on December 6, 2019 in Travel |

2-4 December 2019

Visiting Lapland in winter, I have come to understand why Santa lives here. There is a stark beauty in this all-white landscape, brilliant starry skies, and moving waves of Aurora color.

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Ivalo, Finland and the Aurora Borealis

Posted by Pat on December 3, 2019 in Travel |

1 December 2019

I remember in the early 1950s on a clear and extremely lucky night in Northern Indiana, the skies were actually unpolluted enough to see slight colorings of the Aurora Borealis. Sometimes, faint colorations of the Aurora can be sighted in Northern Minnesota. As Agent Fox Mulder knows, the Aurora is out there somewhere. This week, I am in Lapland in search of those colorful curtains of dancing light.

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Finland

Posted by Pat on December 1, 2019 in Travel |

Thanksgiving 2019

There are exotic destinations haunting the lists of traveler’s dreams: Antarctic, Africa, Panama Canal, Galapagos Islands, Easter Island. Another list topper is Lapland.

Lapland is associated with Father Christmas, a close relative of Santa Clause who I hear runs a sweatshop in North Pole, Alaska. His winter home after the busy season is in Santa Claus Beach just south of Santa Barbara, California. Read more…

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France and Spain and Andorra – Unbeatable Trio

Posted by Pat on November 5, 2019 in Travel |

Some General Observations – October 2019

I have traveled to the European Continent each year during the fall. Surprisingly, I was unprepared for fall in France. What were my surprises?

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Paris – Everything but the Siren

Posted by Pat on October 31, 2019 in Travel |

29-30 October 2019

Sleeping soundly in Toulouse. Message from SNCF, definitely NOT something I want to wake to find. I believe France is the only country in the world with a mobile APP monitoring strikes. It has come in handy, but sudden cancellations and changes mean an unpleasant wake up call. What? Our train is not departing our station? Then where is it going?

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Toulouse, France

Posted by Pat on October 29, 2019 in Travel |

28 October 2019

Le Pont Neuf

I like Toulouse. I can’t be much more enthusiastic than that. It is well-located for visiting some great sites in this southern part of France, like marvelous Carcassonne. It is on the road to Andorra. I has some nice parks, pathways along the historic Canal du Midi and River Garonne, big churches and bigger streets and squares.

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