Tuesday, October 16, 2012

 
---------------------From Timeline of Kings Queens from Charlemagne to Elizabeth II by Gordon Kerr -------------------------- 

1241  Poland: High Duke Henry I dies fighting the Mongols at the Battle of Legnica; the thousands of dead are beheaded and mutilated, but Henry is identified by his eleven toes.

1435  Russia: Vasili the Cross-eyed is ousted by Grand Prince Vasili the Blind.
Obviously, the eyes have it on this one.

1447  Wallachia: John Hunyadi's troops capture Murcia II, blinding him with a red-hot poker, then burying him alive.  Vlad Tepes the Impaler (the model for Dracula) becomes King; he uses extreme violence to control the country, including impaling 20,000 Turkish prisoners on sharpened wooden stakes.
Lovely, sweet people, those medieval Wallachians!
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A Fall-flowering ground cover in the walkway area in front of the house.
While on the hillside above the house, the Fall asters are popping out everywhere.

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We've just come back from a two week small boat (80 passengers) cruise that began in New York City and sailed us up the Hudson to Troy, where we turned west and went up the locks into the Erie Canal.  The Canal had become a serious interest of ours four years ago when we were on a road trip and stumbled onto a two hour boat tour of the Canal's westernmost passage through the daunting, solid rock Niagara Escarpment.  On that boat we spent the whole time with the captain in the wheelhouse, learning all we could about the Canal's history and engineering.  We've since read one of the best books on the Canal's history, Wedding of the Waters.

When we were researching small boat cruise companies that had itineraries in the eastern section of the country, we found Blount Small Ship Adventures that offers a cruise every fall from New York City to the Saguenay Fjord, almost at the mouth of the Saint Lawrence River, then back to Montreal.
The big lure was that we'd be crossing half of New York State on the Erie Canal, then turning north into the Oswego Canal to Lake Ontario.  From there we entered the St. Lawrence in the beautiful stretch known as the Thousand Islands.  I will be posting photos in future posts.  

In brief, we had a wonderful time, met some great people, and were delighted that a surprisingly large number of our fellow passengers were involved in the performing arts, either as practitioners or as frequent audience members at plays and concerts.  More in coming posts.

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Comments:
"The eyes have it"???? OK; it had to be said.
 
The cartoon made me laugh. I might do that just to be a jerk.
 
Well - your rivers are on a scale we can't imagine this side of the pond. The Hudson almost reduced me to tears, like the Neva. Glad you had such a good trip.
 
I LOVE this post. All the blood and gore! The boat ride! The idiot Republican... Really, fascinating (disturbing) history. I went to school in a town on the Erie Canal and always thought it would be fun to do a tour like that.
 
This sounds positively fascinating. Thanks in advance for the upcoming pictures!
 
I am enjoying your bits of history; for some reason I find them rather funny.
 
That was my hope, Michael -- I'm by passing all the "normal" ones and going for the WTF moments in history.
 
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