Liverpool…..Capital of Culture

I explored amazing sites of Central – Liverpool yesterday. Yes, Liverpool has lots to explore.

I took a tour ride on the Yellow Duckmarine, on land and then the Harbour. Then off on foot to explore Albert Docks, Museum of Liverpool, heard stories of the Beatle, Salthouse Dock, Canning Docks, Walker Art Gallery and the streets of Liverpool. The highlight to me, was touring the Liverpool Cathedral, the largest Cathedral in Europe. Words and pictures cannot explain the beauty and tranquility of this place.
Added to the peaceful of this serene place, a young lady started to sing “Ava Maria”. Tears arose bringing forth beautiful memories of my mother, Mary Teresa Gray. As I left this place, I lit a candle….peace!
My day ended with a fun relaxing dinner with Rob, planning our trip to London the next day.





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Day 2….Enroute to Liverpool

We set on to Liverpool with a few stops along the route.
We detoured off the road to a little village called Ironbridge…! I am using wow a lot, simply WOW!
I could live here, so beautiful and unique.

After a couple of hours, we headed off to our final destination Liverpool.




A new day is about to begin…..
Beatles, museums, sightseeing and yes shopping.

Stay tuned…..

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Wow…London Fog!

We arrived at Heathrow airport early to London fog. We couldn’t land for 20 minutes so we did figure 8’s in the sky. Wide eyed ready for our driving adventure, we set off to Horringer near Bury St Edmunds. Rob lost the toss…ha! You can guess, he had to drive. I pulled rank and used the excuse that it was my first time here, and there is so much to see. I would be a has been on the road.


We finally arrived in Horringer around 2 pm at Howard & Peta’s place, ready for a nap. Our gracious hosts let us sleep for a couple of hours, then off to celebrate Guy Fawkes day at the local village. We visited the smallest pub in the world….The Nutshell!


A spectacular first day in UK

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Off on another adventure…..

Three more sleeps until we head off to London, England. I am so excited! We fly out Friday night at 10:45 pm and arrive in London around 9:30 a.m. Saturday morning.

As usual this visit has personal meaning, my dad spent alot of time in England during the WWII. I hope to visit his stomping grounds, and the RAF War Museum to obtain somemore information about my dad’s Squadron 525.

Stay tuned….some blogging and pictures to come!

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Our trip home….

Due to weather, we decided an early departure from Stanley on Saturday, Sept. 4th.   We encountered low clouds, so we couldn’t get above 1000 feet, most cases flying approximately 500 feet.  The scenery was spectacular following the river, weaving through the small towns and villages between the mountains.  I now understand Rob’s passion for the sky.

You haven’t seen a tree until you’ve seen its shadow from the

— Amelia Earhart

We ended our day in Quebec City around 6:30 pm; once again the Harvard was a magnet, people made many eye prints on the beautiful yellow wings.

The next morning, we started early anticipating bad weather.  After lengthy discussions and review of weather, Rob made the decision to take off.  Our next stop was Saint-Hubert, QC to wait out the storm heading our way.  Once again, our yellow wings attracted lots of attention.  Everyone was so helpful to get the Harvard tied down, and covered just in time as the heavy rains and lightening started.   After a few hours the skies opened up and we set off for the last leg home.

I cannot find enough words to express how much fun we had, meeting new and old friends, soaring the skies of the East Coast, Quebec and Ontario.

The East Coast has a special place in my heart, and someday we will return!

The fascination of flight can’t be expressed with words. But it
really lies beyond the capabilities of human endeavor. Once you’ve experienced  it, you’ll never be able to forget it.

 Friedrich Oblessor, 127 victories WWII.

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Friendly Fly-In: Stanley, NS

Deb and I departed from Greenwood on Friday morning to transit the Harvard up to the fly-in at Stanley, NS. After a week of operating from 7000+ foot paved runways, the prospect of landing at a 2600 foot grass runway in a very heavy Harvard gave me some concern. At the risk of revealing a secret, I felt the need to practice enroute; making a stop-and-go at the lovely Waterville airport near Wolfville. The landing seemed serviceable, so it was off to Stanley.

Nothing could have prepared us for the warm welcome that awaited us in this sport aviation heaven! Stanley is the sort of place the recreational pilots dream about. During WWII the airfield served as the BCATP base for 17 Elementary Flying Training School, flying Fleet Finches and Tiger Moths. Since 1969 it has been the home of Stanley Sport Aviation, which is the friendliest, liveliest group of aviation enthusiasts one could meet. The group has built the field into a unique aeronautical community, with a trailer park, guest quarters, running-water toilets and a club house. A collection of hangars houses a wide variety of well-loved airplanes.

This year marked the 40′th anniversary of Stanley’s Labour Day Fly-In, which they tout as Canada’s oldest fly-in. Upon arrival we met Brian Chappell and his wife Norma, who adopted us for the weekend. Nova Scotia made an impression upon us for hospitality, but Brian and Norma seemed to have invented the concept. Having decided to camp on the field (I wouldn’t want to miss a minute of it…) they set up a tent for us, made us lunch, gave us a tour of the airfield, helped us refuel the Harvard, and generally made us both feel like we were part of the family.

Rob enjoying a moment with the Harvard


Things sort of spiralled into happy chaos after that. We met hundreds of people, shared a few drinks, heard some wonderful stories from Stanley’s days as a BCATP base, took a hay ride, partook in a few more drinks, enjoyed the corn boil (HINT TO STANLEY: Who’s in charge of the bonfire? It could be seen from space!), goggled at the fireworks, had a few more drinks, and somewhere along the line toppled into our tent. That was the night before the fly-in began!

Mr. Horton and Rob
Our home for the night!
One of the many hangars at Stanley


We awoke on Saturday morning…to a combination of revelie, mooing cows and a revving Harley (thanks Paul!) to find a thick fog. By about 10:00 it had cleared enough to allow fly-in arrival traffic. By early-afternoon the flight line was nearly full. While Deb was doing a hot trade in Yellow Wings T-shirts, I had accepted the invitation to do a short talk about the BCATP and VWC’s Yellow Wings tour. There seemed to be a lot of interest and enthusiasm for the appearance of the Harvard. Alas, an approaching weather front necessitated an early departure from the fly-in. Deb and I packed up the Harvard and headed west around 4:00 PM on Saturday.


After only a day-and-a half in Stanley we felt like we had made dozens of new friends, and thoroughly enjoyed the warmest fly-in we had ever attended. There are too many people to acknowledge in a short note, but I must give credit to fly-in Chairman, Maryanne Hardman, for organizing a spectacular event. No question, some day we’ll be back.

Debbie enjoying some shade under the Harvard.
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Arrival at Stanley Fly In

Ok, it can’t get any better than this….

We arrived at Stanley to another warm Maritime welcome.

The field is starting to fill up and we have our tent ready to go.

I am sitting under the Harvard leaning against the tire, admiring the view and watching the planes land. Rob is talking to the old and the young, what a great time.

The folks are getting ready for a corn boil, lots of drinks, and entertainment. I feel right at home…..ha!

It is going to be hard going back to work on Tuesday.






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