Saturday, July 17, 2010

Summer Holidays - First long weekend trip

After a very long break I am continuing my long day trip...

Past couple of weeks myself and Karthik are so busy... Went to many shops in search of furniture and some kutti, kutti things for our home. Spent many nights in booking the flight tickets.
Do you like to know the reason, why ?
Its because my in-laws are in Chicago. After a great compulsion from our end, they accepted to come, that too on a condition. Only in summer as you all know winter is so bad here, specially in Chicago. They safely arrived day before yesterday and still recovering from jet lag :))

OK, let we go back to our trip. After having a very good time in Hershey's we went to a Hotel in Lancaster, PA. Its a pathetic hotel we ever stayed. Poor thing is its run by our people. No words to explain about that hotel. Nothing was good... stained chairs, bed with full of dust, a small frozen fridge, I am not joking the whole fridge was frozen and looked so fishy. Fact is we payed twice the normal amount for that room. It was a very bad experience in the whole trip. Since there is no other go we stayed there without touching anything.

Next day morning we rushed out from there and enjoyed a beautiful drive, it was very pleasant. It made us to forget about the nightmare at the hotel. On our way to Philadelphia we went to Dutch farmland, Lancaster Amish county.
The farmlands of the Pennsylvania Dutch Country are among the most productive in the nation. But many of the farmers here are different from most Americans; different by choice. These people trace their heritage back hundreds of years, and yet, despite all the time that has passed and the many changes that have taken place in society, they still live and work much as their forefathers did. Their families and their farms are their top priorities, second only to God.
Our Amish neighbors have been employing horse-drawn power since the days when horsepower had a whole different meaning! In comparison to our fast-paced society, the simpler, family-centered. The Amish have long preferred farming as a way of life. They feel their lifestyle and their families can best be maintained in a rural environment.While they do not permit the use of tractors in their fields, these old order Amish groups do use modern farm equipment pulled by teams of horses or mules.
The Amish are generally private people and often find all the attention and curiosity about their lifestyle disturbing. They believe that the taking of photographs where someone is recognizable is forbidden by the Biblical prohibition against making any 'graven image'. (From amish website)
The whole county was looking green, full farmland. If we cross a farm, atleast we can see minimum 15 horses, herd of grazing cows, 10 sheep, some cock and hens in there backyard of a small house. And the house will be midst of a big land.

Amish people use Buggies, a cart driven by a Horse to travel. We saw so many buggies going on the road. Without knowing our self we respected them and didn't took any pictures.

We pulled our car near a stream and had our brunch under a big tree. Felt as if we were in Tanjore farm field. The whole area was calm, clean, green. Just fantastic.

After few hours journey we reached Philadelphia. Went to all historic places like Declaration of Independence Hall, Benjamin Franklin's house, first Congress Hall, Liberty bell and remembered 'National Treasure' movie. Crossed the Franklin bridge that links Pennsylvania with New Jersey. The highlight was  the ride around town in a horse drawn carriage under the hot sun.

Philadelphia, very small town. Since it was a first long weekend the whole place flooded with many people from different countries. Since we could not stand the heat we started early and went to a place called 'Valley Forge' a forest preserve park. This is the same place where George Washington stayed along with his army in Winter during the Revolutionary War period.

Had our lunch cum dinner in the forest, relaxed ourself for some minutes in the nice breezy forest and started our drive back.
Successfully 2 days ran off...

Friday, July 9, 2010

Weekend Hikes - Fort Sheridan, Half Day park

A couple of week ago, me and my husband went for hiking trial.
Hurray, back on track !

Saturday --It was nice sunny day. We both woke up early morning 9 o' clock and planned to go for a walk. Went to a forest preserve park, few miles away from our place. The place is called 'Halfday preserve'.

Its one of the wonderful place which we saw near our place. We both walked in the midst of tall dense  trees, sun rays were peeking in between the leaves and branches. On top of it, the trail path had many short curves on its way. The scenery was beautiful. It looked like a picture painting on the wall with wonderful colors.

Though the temperature was 82 + Fahrenheit we didn't felt the heat inside the forest. But lots and lots of mosquitoes. Unfortunately we didn't have any mosquito repellent, so some of them took our blood samples.
I Forgot to take the camera, so photos are missing. Wish I will go once again and take the pictures.

Sunday evening we went to Fort Sheridan, it was former army base which was established in 1800 and was officially closed in 1993.
When we started my husband didn't tell me much about the geography of this place, as usual he was talking the history only. Once we parked the car I saw a nice view and started jumping and running. Wait wait let me show you what i saw there.

Tell me who will not excited to go to beach :) This place has a small 0.75 mile beach

Enjoyed a lot :) After clicking some nice photos I put the camera in my pocket, within a second it fell into the water : ( Oh yeah, its a sad part. Luckily nothing big damage occured to my camera. Somehow managed and took few more clicks.
Apart from the beach this place also have hiking trails. On our way we saw the old parade ground, fort and a big bird's nest, etc.

We both had a great time. Enjoyed the weekend nicely :)
Share your experience with me... Bye

Friday, July 2, 2010

Summer Holidays -- First long weekend trip

After having our lunch in a parking lot, we started to go to a sweet place. When we decided to go PA, this is the first place which everybody agreed without any second thought. I was so excited to see this place, so took the front seat with my camera ready.

Yes, Hershey's Chocolate World.
Hershey's is the largest and the oldest chocolate company in US. This company was founded in 1894,by Milton S. Hershey. Did you know Milton S. Hershey purchased his first chocolate making machinery at Chicago's World's Fair.
Hershey's Chocolate World was built as a replacement of the Hershey chocolate plant tour. This tour was discontinued as it was no longer able to handle the large numbers of visitors every year. (From Wikipedia)

Though its not the actual factory, we will not miss anything. Initially, I felt bit disappointed and wanted to go back to our room. Everything changed when we stepped in to the chocolate world omnimover, its a kind of a trolley moving on to a fixed rail. Once we get into the trolley, it starts moving and takes us inside the chocolate world, where we can see all the process involved in making chocolates. Right from the coco been arrival to the factory till the packaging and shipping. It was fun, the puppet cow will narrates all the process with a nice background song. Even if I had visited the actual chocolate factory I would have not enjoyed this much.

Once we were out from the chocolate tour, I directly headed to shopping. Wanted to buy loads of chocolate but only bought 2 small box, since we were travelling in hot sun I didn't buy much. Even these chocolates melted next day itself. But took many photos in the chocolate world, between the aisle.

These are only a part of the shopping complex. After having a big Chocolate Ice cream with mini chocolate topping, we waved a big bye to the chocolate world and started from Hershey's to a hotel in Lancaster, PA