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(05-24-2003) I started out for Philadelphia on Friday afternoon, and napped and drove til I got there. While I love Florida, I've already seen the sections of interstate from here to New York a number of times, so I wasn't missing much by driving in the dark. However, once it got to be daylight I began taking the occasional side trip, to stay awake and enjoy myself. I found a very nice state park, in South Carolina, Santee State Park, with some dense woods and a bit of waterfront, where I stopped to have a picnic breakfast and relax.
View of water in Santee State Park, SC.
(05-25-03) When I got to Philadelphia, it turned out that we were scheduled to go out dancing . . . my relatives there are very much into Scottish Country Dancing, which is a lot of fun to watch. We spent the evening that way, with me watching them practice new dances and hang out at a potluck. The next day there was more dancing, at a party. I helped a little, sorting out cables for the band's sound system, then took this picture:
Dance band tuning up.
You'll probably have observed, by now, that I don't do a lot of photography of people, preferring landscapes and art or jewelry. I don't like setting off flashbulbs in people's faces unless they're already prepared for it, or have actually requested pictures, so you'll just have to imagine all of the dancers swirling around in complex figures, lining up in sets of four or eight partners and executing intricate and energetic patterns that probably would resemble Celtic knotwork if viewed from above.

I very narrowly escaped being swept up and engulfed in the crowd, but was unaware of my peril until the very end, when I was captured by Eleanor and her mother, Edith, and forced to waltz. No broken toes, on either side, fortunately.
The weather was wet, the whole time I was in Philadelphia, and I didn't spend much time outside. My nephew has a beautiful yard, though, and during one clear spell I went out and looked around.
Bees at work.
(05-26-03) In the morning, people started arriving for the workshop. We had a good room for it: there were two columns in the middle, about five or six inches in diameter, and I fastened hemostats (surgical clamps) to them in groups of five so that everyone could find one when they needed to pull on the wire while making bracelets. It went well, everyone did good jobs on their bracelets and we all enjoyed meeting and visiting with each other during the class. We ordered in some pizza for lunch, and finally broke up around two or three when everyone was finished and all their rides had come.
(05-28-03) I drove down to Rockville, MD, and met Connie, who was hosting the Wednesday workshop there. She was extremely hospitable, making me feel very welcome in her home, and making a wonderful home-cooked meal that evening.

The workshop was held in her living room and kitchen, a large combined area, and was great. I always feel guilty if anyone gets left behind, or gets too far along after dropping a stitch, so I was kept hopping all day trying to keep up, and still managed to miss some errors. One person suggested another refinement in my teaching, which I'll try for the next workshop. I learn from my students, every time, and I'm trying to get the class to be as easy as possible.

After the workshop was over, I started home. It's nice to have some days of leisure, so the rest of the trip is devoted to scenic routes.
(05-29-03) I didn't get to the northern end of Skyline Drive until about nine PM, so I spent the night in a motel, in Front Royal. The folks there are nice -- I saw a restaurant that looked interesting and went in, they said they were closed but made me sit down and order anyway, and served me a good meal. In the morning I got up a little after daylight and started driving down Skyline Drive, in Shenandoah National Park. The day was overcast, but not too bad, and I saw lots of wildlife. The only ones that stood still long enough were some deer and turkeys, but even they didn't much like me taking pictures of them. The landscapes, though, while there was light, were very cooperative:
Skyline vista, looking west.
Flowers and trees on Skyline Drive.

There was enough light that the flowers growing on the slopes from the road down to the trees were fantastic, and I took several pictures trying to capture them.

As the day went on, though, it got gloomier and gloomier, and at one point I looked back the way I'd come and saw that the clouds were following me south, and moving faster than I was.
Clouds lowering along the ridge.

It was still beautiful, though, and I lingered for a while to take some more pictures. This pine tree is just one of many, of course, but I especially liked the way it looked with the valley in the background:
Pine tree, approaching cloud.

Eventually it got to where I no longer saw much point in staying, since "scenic views" don't work very well with less than fifty yards of visibility:
Cloud, or fog?  Just a matter of location...

(05-30-03) When I reached the southern end of Skyline Drive, it looked just as bad at the northern end of the Blue Ridge Parkway, so I decided to go visiting instead, and at that point the trip was mostly on interstates, and there isn't much else to say about the trip.

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