PHANEROO \fan-er-o-oo\Greek: to manifest in word or deed.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

LeConte Lodge - A birthday celebration

BJ surprised me with reservations at the LeConte Lodge on top of gorgeous Mount LeConte! We packed our backpacks, filled our Camelbaks, dressed in our trail running gear and hit the Alum Cave Trail Wednesday morning (my actual birthday). We arrived at the top of Mt. LeConte around 3:30 and got settled into our cozy cabin at the Lodge. There is no electricity or running water at the Lodge so everything is quite primitive. They offer kerosene lamps and buckets to collect water from the water pumps around camp. But they do offer fresh linens for the queen sized beds and hot meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner. It was a totally amazing experience! The Lodge is 100% booked during it's open season so reservations have to be made nearly a year in advance - and that's exactly what my amazing husband did for me!!
On Alum Cave Trail

Inside Alum Cave

Taking a break

We made it to the top!

Our cozy cabin that has 3 rooms for other campers.

Cliff Tops

My hunky man on Cliff Tops

One of the amazing views from Mt. LeConte

Getting ready to run back down to civilization the next morning.

The Lodge where meals are served. We met some very cool people here during dinner and breakfast.

New York City - A girls' trip

I met up with my Memphis friend, Betsy, in New York City for an extended 3-day weekend. We are perfect travel companions because we love the same things, travel the same way, and aren't afraid to keep a fast sight-seeing pace. We traveled via plane, subway, cab, bus, and on foot. We hit all major areas of Manhattan: Upper East Side, Soho, Greenwhich Village, Gramercy Park (my favorite), Time Square, Flatiron District (where Obama was visiting on our last day there), Meatpacking District, Fashion District (where our hotel was), Chinatown, Battery Park, and everywhere in between. I loved every square inch of NYC. I would move there in a heartbeat! Here's a glimpse of our trip.
Time Square from the double-decker tour bus.

Parsons, where Project Runway is filmed.

The Empire State building disappearing into the clouds.

When it began to rain while on the double-decker bus, the guide handed out ponchos.

We saw Wicked, the Broadway show that tells the story of the Wicked Witch and Glenda the Good Witch before Dorothy arrived in Oz.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. My favorite part of the trip.

In front of Monet's sunflowers.

Van Gogh

On The Met's rooftop with Manhattan as the backdrop. An amazing place!

An interesting character spotted on 5th Ave. This happens to be a 70-year old man in a bikini riding a girls bike.

Nighttime view of the Empire State building from a rooftop restaurant.

The 911 Memorial. This is one of two fountains which was built on the spot where Tower #1 once stood. For scale, notice how small the people appear on the other side of the fountain. The new World Trade Towers are still under construction and one of them can be seen in this photo just beyond the fountain. They are architectural marvels!

St. Thomas, USVI - Anniversary Celebration

BJ and I picked St. Thomas USVI as the destination to celebrate our 14th wedding anniversary. This is one of our most favorite places for total relaxation.
Our view from our villa and the resort's beach.

The view from the resort looking toward Charlotte Amalie's port.

The old folks celebrating 14 glorious years of wedding bliss!

Looking toward our villa (the second building from the left) and the gorgeous blue waters of the Caribbean.

We enjoyed dinner at The Grande Cru which is in the harbor with the yacht club.

We did a trail run on St. John. This was an abandoned sugar mill plantation on the Reef Bay Trail.

The secluded beach at the end of Reef Bay Trail. We had the whole beach to ourselves.

We jumped over a bunch of these hermit crabs while running the trail.

Megan's Bay in St. Thomas. What a view!!