Saturday, July 25, 2015

Sonoma County Fair Fun 2015

Yesterday I took Michael and his best friend Aiden to the annual fair that takes place in Santa Rosa.  This is the first time that Michael went on ALL of the big rides with Aiden and loved it.  I had fun editing the pictures and making some artistic while others are more realistic.  Enjoy!

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Scream

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Scream Louder

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Best Buds

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Twirl

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Twirl 2

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - The Drop

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - The Drop 2

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Superman
Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Best, Wet Buds


Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Ready

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Jester

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Jester 2

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Jester 3

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Hard Rock

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Serious

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Sonic

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Michael

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Serious

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Tiger

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Michael

Lisa Laporte:  Sonoma County Fair - Aiden & Michael

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Budapest, Hungary 2015 - Part II



We left our boat to stay at the Hotel Corinthia for two days and we had a Transylvanian guide named Romulus who took over our tour.  My first impression of the Hotel Corinthia wasn’t good.  I didn’t like the twin beds, old magnetic key card system, and windows without screens on the 4th floor, and lack of security to access the guest rooms.  Then I remembered the park and in Budapest this was a five star hotel and may have been the best in the city.  We went to dinner at a gypsy restaurant and listened to music, watched dancers, and ate goulash.  It’s an event that you should do but I only recommend doing it once and eat a lot of goulash because the main course is terrible.  He also took us to an old part of town that had tourist shops but also the home to small family restaurants and we ate more goulash.  Romulus was gregarious, hardworking, funny, and also informative about Budapest and Transylvania.  Romulus appreciated his new life because he was raised under communist regime in Transylvania, which was worse than living in Russia, and he shared his history with us.  Romulus’ charisma was so amazing that I woke up at 3 am to catch our flight home and didn’t growl at anyone (I am not a morning person) because Romulus was seeing us off.

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015
Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015
Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015


Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte: Budapest, Hungary 2015

Budapest, Hungary 2015 - Part I


We were in Budapest for a few days and on the first we explored the city by doing what the locals did and visited shops, centers, and parks.  The first stop was at a market/grocery store, which reminded me of the grocery stores that were around when I was a child 40 years ago in the US.  We also rode a tram, used the subway, visited the modern city, as well as the late 19th century market which was still in use today.  Our guide, Gabriella Kiss (pronounced quiche), was born when the Russians still occupied Budapest and she was also a historian.   She took us to a small, quaint park that she was overly excited to share with us and kept asking if we thought it was nice.  Out of respect I said it was beautiful but it truly was an average park and I didn’t realize until later that they didn’t have nice parks in Budapest and she took us to the nicest park the city had to offer.  Gabriella took us to Parliament, which was the first historical building that we saw without scaffolding because they finished the restoration process at the end of 2014.  Gabriella was honest with us when she took us to visit the bronze shoe memorial at the river by sharing the horrific story of the Nazis final push to kill the remaining Jews before they had to surrender in World War II.  We also discovered that Hungary is a poor country that has been occupied by others throughout history and they lost most of their country before World War II began.  She said Hungary joined Germany because Hitler told them that they would get their country back.   Gabriella also showed us a Hungarian memorial, which portrayed Hungary as a victim in World War II by Germany, which she said was controversial because they joined Germany and they were not victims.
Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Budapest, Hungary 2015


Saturday, July 11, 2015

Vienna, Austria 2015

I wished we had a few more days to explore Vienna as we enjoyed our evening of clasical music, opera, and dance.  The next day we ran around to see the Klimt exhibit at one museum, hurried out to another museum to see Rubens and more, and then explored Maria Theresa's palace.

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015
Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015

Lisa Laporte:  Vienna, Austria 2015