Friday, August 08, 2008

500,000 Hits

It looks like my blog will reach the half-million hit mark sometime this weekend. To celebrate this somewhat less than earth-shattering milestone (Paris Hilton gets that many hits in an hour) I will be having dinner and a few beers tomorrow (Saturday, August 9th) at Pete's (Waterfront) Ale House, my favorite neighborhood watering hole, as I am sure you all know by now.

The Mysterious Chinese Woman and I will probably get there around 6:00 P.M. and hang around for a couple of hours. We will be looking forward to seeing any of you who may show up.

Oh, the Mysterious Chinese Woman said that if I posted pictures of myself in a bikini I might be able to compete with Paris. Somehow I doubt that. Be grateful I don't try.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

A River Walk

I decided to break up my posts about my last day in Rome because, well, my last day in Rome was a bit broken up. They Mysterious Chinese Woman and her Equally Mysterious Sister decided to go back and revisit some of the places they had been before and visit a couple more historical sites. I decided to do something different and went for a bit of a wilderness walk right in the heart of Rome.

I took the free hotel shuttle to the train station and then headed towards the river, not quite sure what I would find. Much to my surprise I found a nice little walking and biking trail.

Country In The City

The walk is right along the river which is still a bit wild along this stretch.

Quite Pastoral

Well, it wasn't all pastoral, there was what looked like some kind of an encampment underneath one of the bridges.

Very Mysterioso

I am not sure if this was some kind of a storage area, or an altar.

Just Not Sure

As I walked along the river I noticed that there were very few places where you could actually get off the path and back to the city streets. There were a number of stairways leading up towards the street, but they all seemed to dead-end against either a wall or a gate.

Stairways To Nowhere

Obviously these stairways once led somewhere. In fact, if you got up to the top there is a narrow footpath that runs along the wall that blocks access to the sidewalk and street on the other side. The footpath is so overgrown with underbrush though that it is impassable. I am not sure why these stairways have been blocked off, but once on the river walk you either have to turn back to where you started or keep walking until you get to a major bridge with stairway access. I am guessing it is somewhere between one and two miles from my entry to the first exit.

I was thinking about trying out this culvert to see where it would lead me, but that would have been too much of an adventure. Based upon my earlier discoveries of encampments, who knew who, or what, might be living inside.

Ah, Not Today

The river looked to be at about its normal level to me, based upon where it was in relationship to the bordering vegetation. Apparently it does flood on occasion, at least if these markers are to be believed.

How High's The Water, Mama?

Although Rome is peppered with old buildings, it is undergoing a transformation. I thought this picture kind of caught the juxtaposition.

Something Old, Something New On The Way

I finally made it to a bridge that I could escape too. As you can see, the path I was on kept going, but I was walking, not biking, so I had gone far enough. Plus there were a few other sights I wanted to see.

And The River Flows On

There was a path on the side of the river opposite where I walked, but it really looked like country road. If I had another day I would have taken it to see where it went.

No Walk On The Wild Side

Tomorrow I shall post about the remainder of my last day, and I know you won't want to miss that.

Also, a friend of mine, Terry, pointed out that I was getting close having half a million hits on my website since I installed my counter. He asked me if I planned to celebrate that milestone. I hadn't planned on it, but I guess the afternoon after I hit it I will head to Pete's Waterfront Ale House here in Brooklyn on Atlantic Avenue and hoist a few. Maybe you can join me.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

New PC

Okay, I know, I have been remiss about posting lately. I promise that I will post about my last day in Rome tomorrow. Really, I will.

I just bought a new PC, the HP TouchSmart, and I am in the process of installing it. Well, actually, the installation was a piece of cake. Pretty much just plugged it in and hooked it up to my internet. Then I changed the name of the workgroup to match my existing one and viola, everything connected. It automatically found everthing, even my Lacie BigDisk NAS device. Given that the HP has 500 gigs of memory and Lacie has a terabyte, I think I am pretty well set for storage for awhile.

Now I am migrating over some of my application programs and that is what is taking me a lot of time. Some of them need to be replaced because they are old and not Vista compatible. Others need to have updates downloaded. Kind of a pain, but it will be worth it. I can replace two of my networked PCs with this one. Plus it has a cool 22 inch screen and, as the name implies, touch screen technology.

It will take me awhile to get used to the touch screen technology. I feel more comfortable with the mouse at this point. I can see where the touch screen is neat for some stuff, but I will probably move into it gradually.

Okay, back to work. The last day of Rome will appear sometime tomorrow morning though, I promise.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Art, Or Scaffolding - An Update

As promised, I checked out the "Waterfalls" to see if Friday's shutdown was only temporary. It was.

Walking down to see the one right under the Brooklyn Bridge I headed down on of my favorite streets because of the view at the end.

Nicely Framed

It was too bad it was such an overcast day. On a clear day you can see the Chrysler Building perfectly centered in the lower arch of the Manhattan Bridge. I will make a point of re-shooting this one day. It also looks nice at night when the Chrysler Building is all lite up.

Well, as you can plainly see, the "Waterfalls" were back in business. I have to admit, though, that I didn't see a lot of tourists flocking around.

As I have mentioned before, unlike "Gates," the large installation in Central Park a few years ago, there really isn't any good viewing points for these "Waterfalls" unless you pay for a boat ride. And you certainly can't interact with them. A few people who have tried had to be rescued when their kayaks overturned. The Harbor Patrol now actively keeps people from venturing too close.

I, personally, like the smaller sculptures along the waterfront, the ones that kind of surprise you.

More My Style

Okay, enough with the diversions already. My next post will be about my last full day in Rome and conclude my European adventure. I guess I have just been delaying the inevitable. It was a fun trip even if I didn't get into the seedy casinos by the train station.