Wednesday, August 24, 2016

National Steinbeck Center, Salinas, CA

In honor of the passing of Thomas Steinbeck, the eldest son of John Steinbeck, I thought I'd post about my trip a few months ago to the National Steinbeck Center in (where else?) Salinas, CA.

A wall mural opposite the museum.

The very modern National Steinbeck Center...

...which is directly across from the decidedly less modern downtown Salinas.

Larger than life...

A map of central California with points of interest relevant to Steinbeck's life and works.

Most authors would give a left testicle / breast to have just one of these books to their credit.

Young John and his sister.

John's wives.

"Thanks, Mom!"

One of many exhibits.

I think I may have gone through the museum out of order, since East of Eden was one of his later works.

I once taught this book while student teaching (many years ago...), and I had to learn about "timshel" myself.

I first read Of Mice and Men in high school, and loved it.

The Grapes of Wrath, undoubtedly his most famous work.

I admit I've never read Tortilla Flat.

Route around the Sea of Cortez, for his book.

Steinbeck served in the navy in WWII.

Translated Steinbeck works.

Nobel Prize for Literature in 1962.

I should probably read Travels with Charley... considering this is largely a travel blog.

Steinbeck's ride.

In all my travels, I've never been recognized, either.

I recommend the National Steinbeck Center, especially if you're familiar with his works.

Down the street is John Steinbeck's birthplace.

I got there just after they closed, so I couldn't enter.

Coming up next... more day trips, and some longer trips.  Stay tuned.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Hood River, Oregon

Now that we live in Vancouver, WA, we're only a short drive away from many excellent destinations.  One such place is Hood River, OR, just past the Columbia River Gorge.  Last April when both of my in-laws were in town, we went for an excursion.  Here's the much belated post.

Like many destinations in the Pacific Northwest, Hood River runs on beer.  This is pFriem (with my mother-in-law waving in the background).

Christopher was along for the ride, and preparing to be naughty.

I ordered the Down Under IPA, which was fantastic.


A random stranger enjoys his pFriem beverage.

We had a bit of a wait for a table, so I went across the street to the park by the Columbia River.  These kids were also enjoying the park and its rock wall.

My brother-in-law had to wrangle Christopher, who didn't realize he wasn't supposed to go into the river fully clothed (to say nothing of a lack of swimming know-how).

The riverfront park was very nice, and overlooked the Columbia River as well as White Salmon, WA, on the other side.

The same rock wall seen earlier, from the opposite angle.

My brother-in-law is a good uncle.

Looking across to Washington state.

Chris was very upset that we wouldn't let him get any wetter (he wasn't supposed to go in at all, but that's like telling a moth to avoid the flame).

Chris has a penchant for the dramatic.

Fortunately, it was time to go in for our lunch reservation.

We made one more beer stop before heading back to Vancouver = Logsdon Farmhouse Ales barrel room.

I had been waiting for a long time to try their Peche 'n Brett sour beer, and it was worth the wait.