Ferry to Tunis, Tunisia – April 2, 2018 – Palermo, Italy


By Tom Allin

Sometime in the last couple of months I was looking at a map of Sicily.  Eventually it came to my mind that Tunisia was only an inch a way from Sicily and Sicily was only two inches long so the distance between Sicily and Tunisia couldn’t be all that much.

Next my brilliant brain comes up with the idea that if Tunisia is close to Sicily there probably is a ferry between the two places.  I googled “ferries Italy Tunisia” and damn if there isn’t just one but more than one ferry making this trip.

I asked Nancy if she would like to visit Tunisia and her answer is, “Why not?”

So this evening about 10:00 pm we finally get in the correct line to exit Italy and drive on to the ferry.  Departure time is 2:00 am – appears to be a lot of waiting time built into check in time and departure time

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Our Drive to Salerno – May 4, 2018 – Maratea to Salerno, Italy


By Tom Allin

We are headed to the famous Amalfi Coast and our first overnight stop will be Salerno.  But first we have an all day drive due to various stops we want to make between Marateaand Salerno.

As you will note in the photograph the weather wasn’t bright and sunny rather it was cloudy and we did encounter some rain.  However, it was another very good drive.

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Certosa di Padula; Part III – May 2, 2018 – Padula, Italy


By Tom Allin

In our time in Italy we have seen a lot of choir seating, doors, and various sculptures that are ornately crafted and carved.  For some reason the woodwork in the Certosa di Padula caught my eye more than other places we visited.

The church door was created in 1374 out of Cedar of Lebanon.  It is decorated with scenes from the Annunciation of Mary, Saint Lorenzo and more.  The set of doors got a lot of use: prayers were said twice a day and once during the night.

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Certosa di Padula; Part II – May 2, 2018 – Padula, Italy


By Tom Allin

As we entered each area of the cloister there was a detailed map and description of what you would see.  That was the good news.  The bad news is most of the time Nancy and I couldn’t understand where we were on the map.  But what the heck we enjoyed everything we saw.

The church has one nave with cross-altars.  We walked into the nave and our cameras started clicking.

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By Ron Munden — September 12, 2018

The agenda for the September 13, 2018, City Commission meeting contains these items:


A. Consider approval of an Ordinance repealing Section 2-12 of Chapter 2, Administration of Ordinances of the City of Marshall, TX, entitled “Annual Sales Tax Appropriation for Streets Projects,” which requires that a certain percentage of the local sales tax be appropriated to maintaining and improving city streets. (Acting City Manager)

B. Consider approval of an Ordinance to adopt the annual budget of the City of Marshall, Texas, for the 2019 fiscal year. (Acting City Manager)

Item A will remove a city requirement that at least 25% of the city sales taxes will be spent on street maintenance. Item B approves the City’s 2019 budget. It is my understanding that the budget does not meet the 25% requirement for street repairs.

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Certosa di Padula; Part I – May 2, 2018 – Padula, Italy


By Tom Allin

Yes, you read that correctly: Part I.  This is going to be a three-part photo essay because I went crazy with the camera in the four plus hours we walked the grounds and buildings.

It was an easy drive that lasted about one and a half hours.  As is so typical of the Italian countryside it was beautiful.  We arrived, parked in a large parking lot (not typical of Italy) with very few cars and only two or three buses, and set off for the entrance to this UNESCO World Heritage Carthusian monastery.

One of the reasons for all the photographs is this monastery is the largest monastery in Italy.  One of the statistics is: 320 rooms and halls – thank god (no pun intended) not all the rooms are open.  The oldest portion of the monastery is 450 years old or another way to think of its age is construction began in 1568.  Most of the monastery was built in the Baroque style.

If 1568 is not old enough for your enjoyment remember the monastery was founded in 1306.  The monastery was dedicated to one of Nancy’s and my favorite saints, Saint Lawrence.  He was supposed to have been roasted alive on a griddle iron and is the patron saint for rotisserie owners – you just can’t make things like this up.

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By Ron Munden

When I lived in the San Francisco Bay area, I wrote in my journal each day. These were my thoughts in 2001.

I wrote this story on the 5th anniversary of 9/11. I now look back at it each time the calendar approaches that date. At the time I wrote the journal entries I was living just outside of San Francisco.

As the 5th anniversary of 9/11 approached, I pulled my journal for 2001. It refreshed my memories about what I was thinking right after the attack. Here is what I read:

Tuesday, September 11, 2001
The Day the U.S. was Attack

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