Tag Archives: travel

#TBT: travel

I went down a rabbit hole on AirBnB the other day, looking longingly and lovingly at places I’ve stayed on travels around the US and Europe.

And some photos from these places:

Taking away the breath

Tunnel Hill, Illinois.

7.25 a.m.  I step off the back porch to give Nelson a moment after his breakfast.  We walk to the fence line.  He is interested in the cows in the distance.  I look up.

And gasp.

The little valley is shrouded in morning fog.  But it’s sun-kissed just enough that I can see the distant tree line, then the hills, and then a receding curtain of translucent white.

There’s a lyric in a song I teach: “This is the closest I’ve been to being part of a painting.”  And I sing that truth aloud.

Had the Impressionists ventured to this little vale in southern Illinois, they would painted this.

Sadly, the fleeting moment disappeared as I stood transfixed, giving way to the inexorable sunrise.  Such visions are gone too soon, never to be captured again except in memory.

But another day will dawn, equally as vivid and alive.  Oh that I could be here to see it too.

This is the vista.  Imagine this as a lake of thin morning fog.  I don’t recall the last time I was so effected by a landscape.

Looking west.

Farm life, part 2

Looking south, from the bedroom.

Tuesday dawned wet with rain, and the rains fell off and on all morning.

By noon, the sky was clear, and my meetings were finished, so Nelson and I took a ramble.

The cows were up by the fence today, just a few yards from my back porch:

Nelson thinks cows are something at which to bark.


I didn’t try the swing, but I can imagine how fun it is for a kid, or an overgrown kid.

After lunch (ham salad sandwich, pineapple, grapes), I went the front porch to read.  Here’s the report:

I was sitting on his leash and reading a book.  And he jerked so hard that the leash went flying, he went flying to chase cattle, and I went flying to chase him, and we ended up panting (both of us) and sweating (me) only after a kind driver stopped a full 1/4 mile away, stepped on his leash, and he (the dog, not the driver) walked with me in shame back to the homestead.  He’s an adventurous and brave little shit, and also supremely unaware of danger.

And Tuesday’s dinner:

Olivia de Havilland

As my friend Darin has posted, the last link to the great Golden Age of Hollywood is gone.

I have a short little Olivia de Havilland story.

The context: https://jeffreycarter.wordpress.com/2011/01/22/7-june-1999/

I was at the Episcopal church in Paris, France.  Singing Evensong with the choir. One of the readers of scripture that evening was an elegant older lady in a beautiful but simple black dress, with an expensive-looking brooch, and an elegant coif of white hair.  She spoke in the most beautiful tones.

That lady was Olivia de Haviland.

She was magic, even reading a portion of a letter from Saint Paul.



On the farm

Monday morning on the farm.  The air is thick, but a breeze blows, and the temperature is not yet disgusting.  If all I had to do is sit a spell and drink coffee, I wouldn’t sweat too much.

Oh wait . . . this is holiday time!  All I have to do is sit a spell and drink coffee!

The bed is comfy, and the blinds block out the light.  But that urge to rise at 6 a.m. is a powerful one after decades of conditioning.

So Nelson and I took a (leashed) walk at sunrise.

I’ve read Morning Prayer for the Feast of William Reed Huntington.  And looked in on email.  I may just avoid the news today.

On the docket for today: explore an old cemetery down the road.  Nap.  Do homework for the class tonight on functional voice training.  Nap.  Enjoy the view of the pond and the sound of silence.


Nineteen years ago this month.

I was part of a Group Study Exchange of four young (under-40) professionals, going to Brazil from central Indiana, all under the auspices and sponsorship of Rotary International.

This trip changed my life.

Read more: https://jeffreycarter.wordpress.com/travel-memoirs/brasil-2001/.