Browsing Archives for Yellowstone

This is the Old Faithful Lodge

You can watch Old Faithful erupt from the enormous windows in the lobby.  Despite it’s grandeur, this space is cozy and welcoming.  There’s a coffee shop with bakery items in the corner and comfortable places to sit and enjoy your snack.  There is also a gift shop that is crowded with Americans.  All the Europeans and Asians in the park are out scaling cliffs to the tops of waterfalls.

The Yellowstone Inn.

Located on the opposite side of Old Faithful from the Lodge, Old Faithful Inn is the quintessential mountain hotel.  The central part of the building (with the steep roof and the pointy gables) was built in 1903.  Two more wings were added later.  Inspired by the 1870 Adirondack designs by William West Durant, the Yellowstone Inn is the oldest log hotel in the US.


World’s most pathetic fireplace shot of Yellowstone Inn’s massive chimney.

The interior of Yellowstone Inn.

Yellowstone architecture is all about the front porch.

This is the front porch of the Roosevelt Lodge.

Portions of the Yellowstone Lake Inn date back to 1891.  It is the oldest surviving hotel in the park.

The dining room and sun room were added in 1929.

I had hoped to eat lunch here, but we didn’t arrive until mid-afternoon and they were no longer serving.

So we just gawked at the interiors a bit.

Used the marble bathroom…

And headed just down the road to the Lake Lodge in hopes of a late luncheon.

Sadly, the lodge was also no longer serving.

C’mon Yellowstone!

The park is literally crawling with hungry people!

Can you seriously not whip us up a hamburger?!?!?!?

So we limped back to camp and I made us some spaghetti on the old camp stove.

The end.

Mike and Liz came out for Labor Day weekend.  It was really good to see them.  They have been our friends ever since the CD was in medical school and they have never been religious.  I used to worry about them when I was a Christian.  I would occasionally pray that God would get a hold of their lives, but it was usually a half hearted prayer.  I liked Mike and Liz they way they were and I didn’t think that religion would make them better. They are both curious as to why I changed my mind about religion and we have had some great conversations, but neither of them end up in tears, or angry or tell me that it is an inappropriate topic to discuss or that I am crazy or deeply unhappy or scarily mistaken.  They are simply curious.  And then we go back to talking about our kids or good food or the state of the world or how to lance the caldera at Yellowstone before it blows us all to smithereens.

Speaking of the caldera at Yellowstone – did you know that ‘caldera’ is just a fancy word for massive volcano?  A few weeks ago, when I was all hepped up about telling my extraordinarily fascinating Yellowstone vacation story, I started reading about the Yellowstone caldera so as to have a few pertinent factoids to accompany my post and that’s how I learned that the Yellowstone caldera could explode at any moment and if it does, the heartland of the US is doomed.  Here are your Yellowstone Caldera explosion survival options if you live in middle America…

1.  If you live within a 50 mile radius of the park you will instantly explode.

2.  If you don’t instantly explode, you will die by inhaling burning gas that will cook you quickly and very painfully from the inside out.

3.  If you don’t get cooked from the inside out, you will inhale glass particles that will cause you to hemorrhage internally and die.

4.  If you don’t die from tiny glass fragments cutting your insides to bits, you will die from starvation as the massive cloud of ash (comprised of tiny bits of glass) will cover most of the middle of the US, resulting in an ice age that will cause crops to fail on a catastrophic scale.

It was kind of hard to return to a lighthearted account of my vacation in Yellowstone once I realized that I might be doomed to die at best by exploding and at worst by slowly starving.  Then I started to read about global warming and how if we don’t die in an ice age caused by a volcano in Yellowstone,  we are going to die in a drought caused by global warming.  Then my bank sent me a letter explaining that I needed to give them permission to charge my ATM card when I no longer had funds available in my account.  Evidently the government created a new law that prohibits banks from allowing people to continue to use their ATM cards when they have no funds available unless the customer has specifically requested that the card continue to be charged. What this means is that banks can no longer collect overdraft fees on ATM cards because seriously WHO IS GOING TO CHOOSE TO BE CHARGED AN OVERDRAFT?

When I got that letter and discovered that my bank had knowingly charged my card when they could have just as easily declined my card, I stormed the bank and demanded to know why they would do this.  My bank insisted that it was a great service to me to charge my cards even though I had insufficient funds, saving me the uncomfortable embarrassment of having my card declined, but I heartily disagreed.  I would much rather have my card declined than pay an overdraft fee!  Then I learned that my bank CAREFULLY CHOSE AMONG THEIR CUSTOMERS WHOSE CARDS THEY WOULD ALLOW TO ACCUMULATE OVERDRAFTS AND WHOSE CARDS THEY WOULD NOT ALLOW TO ACCUMULATE OVERDRAFTS.  If you were poor or a student, they simply shut off your card when you had insufficient funds.  But if you were the town doctor – they charged you as much as they could as often as they could.  My bank had placed a $700.00 overdraft limit on my card meaning that each time I made a purchase with insufficient funds I was charged an overdraft fee until I was $700.00 in the red. I am not a habitual over-drafter, but it happens and when I think that the bank could have just declined my card instead of charging me hundreds of dollars in overdraft fees over the past seven years, it really hacked me off.

And yes, I realize that any overdraft fees I have been charged over the past seven years could have been prevented by my being more aware of the state of my bank account, but I would have much preferred that my bank simply decline my card than charge me a fee for overdrafting.  Banks make millions of dollars on overdraft fees.  Right now my bank is running a desperate campaign to keep it’s customers overdrafting their accounts.  They have placed frantic ads on their web site and around the bank with this wording…

DON’T WANT YOUR CARD DECLINED?

OPT IN!

They make it sound as if you are doomed if you don’t ‘opt in’.

But I was doomed already.

Because I knew about that Yellowstone caldera with a side of global warming.

So I think I am going to switch over to a credit union and cut the bank’s stockholders out of my checking account forever.

Here is an interesting article about some banks re-ordering checks and charges to maximize their overdraft fees .  There are lawsuits pending.  You might want to see if your bank was one of the perps.  _________________________________________________________________________________________________

IN OTHER NEWS!!!!!

If you are still reading this – here is my version of PW’s stellar list of blogging tips.  I was so inspired by her post that I had to come up with my own.  I hope it helps!!!

1.  Be Yourself

Marry a rich cowboy

2.  Blog Often

Photograph the following things in the following prescribed order on a daily basis…

Husband’s ass
Dog
Husband’s ass
Dog
Husband’s ass
Aryan looking child with alabaster skin and glowing blue eyes.
Husband’s ass
Dog
Expensive home items that no one can afford during a recession.
Husband’s ass
Dog
Aryan looking child with alabaster skin and glowing blue eyes
Husband’s ass
Dog
Daughter with messy hair
Husband’s ass
Dog
Dog
Horse’s ass
Horse’s ass
Husband’s ass
Dog
Dog
Expensive home item that no one can afford unless you are married to a billionaire cowboy.
Dog
Dog

3. Be Varied

Dog
Dog
Dog
Husband’s Ass
Aryan looking child with alabaster skin and glowing blue eyes
Daughter with messy hair
Faded pasture scene
Expensive home item
Dog
Expensive home item
Dog
Faded pasture scene
Dog
Dog
Cat
Dog
Aryan Child
Expensive home item
Flowy shirt
Dog
Flowy shirt
Dog
Flowy shirt
Dog
Aryan Child
Dog
Husband’s ass

4. Exercise More

Butter
Butter
Butter
Butter
Butter
Dog
Aryan Child
Flowy Top
Butter
Butter
Husband’s ass
Butter
Dog
Butter
Dog
Butter
Dog
Butter
Dog
Dog
Dog
Butter

5. Allow your boundaries to set themselves naturally.

Talk about God

I mean Dog
I mean God
I mean Dog
I mean God
I mean DOG!!!
GOD!!!
BUTTER!!!
DOG!!!!
GOD!!!
ARYAN CHILD!!!!!

6. Bring back retro phrases like “hanky panky.”

Holey yoga pants

7. Don’t be afraid to embarrass yourself.

Write lame posts that allow you to feature really awesome photos of yourself in profile in signature flowy top.

8. Try your best to spell words correctly and use proper grammar.

Steal ideas from other bloggers and don’t ever give them credit for it.

9. If you have writer’s block, push through and blog anyway.

Steal ad revenue from entire BlogHer network to fund your own blog and pretend that you knew nothing about it.

10. Value every person who takes time out of their day to stop by your blog

Write your own fake comments telling yourself how awesome you are.

11. Keep it real!

Drench blog in money and materialism and empty American women will eat it up.
Was that eleven?!?!
Silly little ole me!
See number four.

Love Ya More ‘n my Luggage!

And I REALLY mean it!

Rechelle

Look!  We all look so happy!  Like we actually like each other and enjoy being together!