pics from my long vacation

Discussion in 'Illinois' started by webby, Sep 2, 2013.

  1. webby

    webby Viper Owner

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    hi everyone

    I have been traveling since July 12th and won't be back to Chicago until early November. I miss my car!! I don't know what date I'm returning yet, but I can tell you that I'll be making a road trip the day after I get back

    It was sad to cut this driving season short but I needed this... this is my first vacation since graduating high school in 2005. The original plan was to go to Europe for 3 months, but it was too expensive, so I planned on staying in Canada. But then my friend John, "MoreBeer" on here, offered me a place to stay at his home in Germany. So I ended up going to Canada for one month, New York City for a week, and I've now been in Germany for 2 weeks.

    Enjoy the pictures, and of course there'll be more to come. Thanks to those who have messaged me while I've been away, and especially to John. This is such a great club to be a part of... even with all the nonsense going on at the national level, the IL region is like another family.

    Québec City

    The trip was incredible from day one. On my connecting flight from Toronto, who should sit directly in front of me but STEVIE WONDER! I got my own personal little concert just listening to him hum to himself. No picture, I didn't want to be rude, but I found out he was playing at the summer music festival the next night. I was able to get tickets and saw him live, and he sounds just as amazing as he did in decades old recordings. I walked around Vieux-Québec (old Quebec) before the concert, it was very pretty and charming.

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    Montréal

    I only stayed in QC for a couple days, wish I had stayed there longer. Montréal was a little too crowded and dirty for my liking, but I loved the mountain and it was a nice place to live for a few weeks. Bike rentals are cheap and convenient, food was expensive but delicious. Met another Viper owner in Montréal, I don't think he is in the club, but we drove around the Grand Prix track and had a little photo op.

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    Tadoussac

    I am a huge nature lover but have lived in suburbs and cities my whole life and never really been able to get away from that. So one weekend I decided to go to Tadoussac. It was a 6 hour bus ride from Montréal, but I was able to stop in Québec City again (first 2 pictures).

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    I arrived at Tadoussac at night. Even in the middle of nowhere (population 813) I see nice cars

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    I went exploring as soon as I checked into my motel. My mind was blown so many times that weekend. First by the insane number of stars I could see without light pollution (picture doesn't do it any justice at all). I also saw a huge black expanse, which I assumed was forest, but the next morning I was shocked to see was actually the bay. Even small things like seeing 2 bats hunting moths at night just took my breath away.

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    But of course here is the main reason I went there:

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z0lnyjLUQ8c

    I saw two humpbacks, a pod of belugas, three fin whales (2nd largest after the blue whale), a few minkes, and some seals. The waterfall you see was pouring from 300+ foot cliffs, and the guide said it swells and is much larger in the early spring.

    It was a three hour boat ride, it was cold, cloudy, raining, and one of the best days of my life. After the boat ride I hiked a mountain which had an amazing view of the bay (last 2 pictures). Better than Montréal's mountain because I only saw 2 other people the entire time. After a couple hours I noticed some storm clouds rolling in... kind of terrifying to feel the wind and see them approaching when you're at the top of a mountain with nothing but your camera. But I made it back to the motel before it started raining.

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    Last edited: Sep 2, 2013
  2. webby

    webby Viper Owner

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    New York City

    In NYC I was able to stay with my older brother in Manhattan, and my little sister came to visit as well. After complaining about Montréal being crowded and dirty, I thought I'd hate NYC. But it was actually pretty nice. Times Square was insane, I've never seen so many people in my life. It's weird to think that Chicago has nothing that comes even close to Times Square in terms of the number of people. But I'm still not exactly sure what you're supposed to do there... besides take pictures of Times Square.

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    We went to several museusm, but the Metropolitan Museum of Art was my favorite:

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    Central Park was amazing. I always thought it was just a giant field of grass and trees and ponds, but it's much more than that

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    And of course, NYC never sleeps

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    Konstanz

    And finally, Germany. John's place is in Konstanz, which is a small town right on the border of Switzerland. You can literally walk to Switzerland from where we are, and during WWII Konstanz tricked allied bombers into thinking they were part of Switzerland so they wouldn't get bombed.

    It's a really lovely place. The Rhine flows through the lake here, and the "old towns" of Vieux-Québec and Vieux-Montréal which I loved so much, are basically the entire city here. The first night I got here there was a nearly full moon reflecting on the lake, it was incredible. I thought I'd have plenty of time to get a good shot of it, but it's been cloudy and I've been kicking myself since then. The last few days have had clear skies again, but no moon.

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    I can't thank John enough for letting me stay here. For my remaining two months, the general plan is to see fewer countries but spend more time in them, instead of trying to fit everything in at once. France, Italy, Spain, will have to wait. I'm planning to go through eastern Germany (Dresden, Berlin) and Poland (Wroclaw, Krakow, Gdansk) in a few weeks, and Switzerland as well.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2013
  3. johniew398

    johniew398 Enthusiast

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    Great pictures. Thanks for sharing.
     
  4. propsail

    propsail Viper Owner

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    beautiful pics. Looks like a fantastic vacation
     
  5. SNAKE BITE

    SNAKE BITE Viper Owner

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    Wow, those are amazing pictures! Thanks for sharing
     
  6. The_Greg

    The_Greg Viper Owner

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    Incredible! I'm very jealous & happy for you... How did you manage to meet a random Viper owner?!

    I have a feeling I'll be in NYC on vacation sometime soon. My friends and I talk about going to Germany in 2014, but I'm not sure if it will pan out. These pictures are really neat to see! Thanks for sharing.
     
  7. webby

    webby Viper Owner

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    Thanks everyone!

    Instagram! haha. He was following me, saw I posted a pic from Montréal, and offered a ride.

    If you're planning to stay a while, I recommend Airbnb.com. Hostels are fine for a couple days but longer and you'll want somewhere nicer... you can find some nice places on there for 1/5 the price of a hotel. I've been tempting myself with some places in Greece that have amazing views for like $25 a day... just getting there would be the problem
     
  8. CEJ

    CEJ Viper Owner

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    Great photos! What camera are you using?
     
  9. webby

    webby Viper Owner

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    Thanks :) it's a Canon Powershot S5 IS. It's 8 years old and just a point and shoot, but it has full manual control, 12x optical zoom, and I use a circular polarizing filter, that's why the colors look so vibrant (no editing in most of the pictures). My only complaint is I wish it were a bit of a wider angle
     
  10. CEJ

    CEJ Viper Owner

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    Nice camera! Love the p&s cameras as they are easy to take with you.

    I really like how you frame your photos too. Good eye.
     
  11. Stretch

    Stretch Viper Owner

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    Great pictures!! Have fun and travel safe :2tu:
     
  12. radta7

    radta7 Viper Owner

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    Great pictures and video. Thanks!

    Rob
     
  13. viper04

    viper04 Viper Owner

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    Nice pic's good your having fun. LMK when you get back.
     

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