Starling Travel

December 30, 2009

Postcard of the Week: Logan Canyon 1943

Filed under: Places To Visit,Postcards,Utah — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

This week’s postcard was sent to Mrs. Natalie Donovan in Cleveland, Ohio on October 23, 1943.

Postcard of the Week: Logan Canyon 1943 by LauraMoncur from Flickr

The postcard reads:

Looking down Logan Canyon, near Ogden and Logan, Utah

Only a few minutes from the business center of Ogden, this canyon is one of the main scenic attractions of Utah. Fully paved, it affords a beautiful route to Snow Basin and Monte Christo parks in the recreational area.

Pub. by Ogden News Co., Ogden, Utah
Natural color post card made in U.S.A. by E. C. Kropp Co., Milwaukee, Wis. – (EAL)

Postcard of the Week: Logan Canyon 1943 by LauraMoncur from Flickr

The letter to Mrs. Natalie Donovan reads:

Hello Natalie,

Passing thru Utah now. Mountain scenery is gorgeous. Wish you were along with me.

Will write later, and tell you all about everything.

Love, Evelyn

Logan Canyon is still a pretty mountain drive, even today. You can read more about it here:

Where: Logan Canyon, Utah

View Larger Map

December 23, 2009

Postcard of the Week: Birmingham, Alabama

Filed under: Alabama,Places To Visit,Postcards — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

This postcard was sent from Birmingham, Alabama to Mrs. E. P. Bejot back on March 5, 1958.

Postcard of the Week: Birmingham, Alabama by LauraMoncur from Flickr

The postcard reads:

VULCAN – GOD OF METALS. This Gigantic Statue, the largest cast figure in the world, is located in Vulcan Park atop Red Mountain overlooking Birmingham, AL. The Statue is made of Birmingham iron and stands 55 feet from foot to outstretched arm and weights a total of 100 tons. The head alone weighs 6 tons, its foot 5 tons and the thumb 170 pounds. It is mounted on a base 124 feet high made of Red Mountain Limestone quarried from the mountain on which it stands. The total height of the base and statue is 179 feet. The statue was sculptured by G. Moretti and cast in Birmingham in 1903 from iron ore taken from Red Mountain and was sent to St. Louis in 1904 for exhibit during the Louisiana Purchase Exposition. Upon its return it was placed in the Fair Grounds where it remained until 1935, at which time through the work and co-operation of the Birmingham Kiwanis and the City Commission it was placed atop Red Mountain where it stands today, a symbol to the Magic City, Steel Center of the South. VULCAN holds a torch in his uplifted hand which burns green when there is no traffic fatality in metropolitan Birmingham and burns red for 24 hours when a traffic fatality occurs.

Postcard of the Week: Birmingham, Alabama by LauraMoncur from Flickr

The letter to Mrs. E. P. Bejot reads:

Mon. 11 am

We are on our way home from Decatur, Alabama. 90 miles north of here. Came up Sat. and had a grand visit with Lois and John Skuba. Harry came with us. We have a little one. 300 miles to go yet. Wonderful country up here – different from any we’ve been yet. Hope you are all fine.


Heince took pictures of this state.

Lois and John were so glad to see us as they are far from home – don’t get to see many friends from very often.

Vulcan Park (Birmingham, Alabama) by cseeman from FlickrVulcan is STILL the largest cast iron statue in the world and it is still in Vulcan Park in Birmingham, Alabama. In 1999, it was in a state of disrepair and a huge renovation project took five years to restore it. You can find out more information here:

Ironically, the postcard from Pearle to Mrs. Bejot didn’t show the statue in its best light. You can see much better photographs of it on Flickr:

Where: Vulcan Park
1701 Valley View Drive
Birmingham, AL 35209-1214 Google Map
(205) 933-1409

Vulcan Park and Museum – Home

December 17, 2009

The Future of Bus Travel Has Arrived?

Filed under: Travel — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Greyhound Future of Bus Travel: click to see full sizeI saw this advertisement for Greyhound yesterday and it sounded like traveling on a bus might be better than it used to be.

It reads:

The future of bus travel has arrived. Well ahead of schedule.

Introducing the brand-new, redesigned Greyhound bus. Learn more about the specific amenities our newly redesigned motorcoach has to offer.

New Amenities: Wi-Fi, outlets, legroom, safety and eco-friendly.

Being able to be online while traveling might make riding the bus better than flying or driving it myself, so I thought I would check the prices.

To ride from Salt Lake City to Las Vegas, it would cost me $107 and take me 8 hours (which is three hours longer than driving it myself). For comparison, I checked Expedia to see how much it would cost me to fly from Salt Lake City to Las Vegas and it was $133 and take me only an hour and a half.

Why would anyone take the bus when flying costs only thirty bucks more?

I thought that maybe there would be better savings if I tried comparing a bus ride and flight from Salt Lake City to New York. There IS a better savings ($100 VS. $278), but the difference in travel time is 53 hours VS. 8 hours. Is it worth $178 to save 2 DAYS of travel time? To me, it is, so I wonder how Greyhound stays in business. They can barely compete on pricing and lose EVERY time when they compete on travel time.

The future of bus travel? Sorry, Greyhound. Wi-fi and electrical outlets just can’t compete with saving TWO DAYS of travel time. In fact, the future of bus travel looks a lot like the past…

Greyhound 1948: click to see full size

Ad via: vintage_ads: Greyhound 1948

December 16, 2009

Galveston, TX: Feeding the Seagulls on Stewart Beach

Filed under: Places To Visit,Texas — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

This is one of my favorite moments in Galveston. After eating at The Spot, I saved my waffle fries and taco salad bowl to feed to the seagulls. Watch as they take the fries right out of my hands.

I love how the seagulls can just hover right next to me, waiting for me to throw the next morsel. When that gull actually took the food right out of my hand, I laughed out loud with joy.

What a beautiful moment!

December 15, 2009

Galveston, TX: A View of the Seawall

Filed under: Places To Visit,Texas — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

While we were in Galveston, I took a quick video of the ocean at the seawall.

Seawall in Galveston, TXThe seawall was built after the hurricane of 1900. That hurricane devastated the island and is still the deadliest natural disaster to strike the United States. Rather than leave the island uninhabited, they built the seawall and raised Galveston by as much as seventeen feet in some areas. The seawall has protected Galveston ever since.

Galveston BookshopLast year, when Hurricane Ike hit, the seawall held, but the winds and water snuck in through the bay on the other side of the island and drown the island with eight feet of water. Everywhere we visited, each shop, restaurant and museum had a mark on their wall where the water level was. They all had small photo albums that they pressed into my hands to show the damage. It was like they were proud of what Ike had done to them and they survived it all.

For more information:

December 14, 2009

Christmas in Disneyland

Filed under: Amusement Parks,California,Places To Visit — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

Last year, my sister, Stacey, wanted to go to Disneyland for Christmas. After a HORRIBLE flight delayed by a snow storm, we arrived in California the day after Christmas and enjoyed the park all dressed up for the holidays.

Here is a video showing what it’s like:

Considering how much a fan of the Haunted Mansion I am, you might think that I hate what they do to the ride for Christmas, but I loved it. Here of some photos of the Christmas decorations:

What I loved most of all, however, is the parade and fireworks every evening. They had SNOW! I know it sounds crazy that they would be able to produce a gentle snow fall every evening in southern California, but they did. I don’t know what the snow flakes were made of, but they felt just as cool and fluffy as the snow that delayed our flight in Salt Lake City for so long.

When my sister suggested that we fly to Disneyland for Christmas, I thought she was crazy. I just went along for a family trip that we could laugh at and remember. Now, it’s a year later and I’m sad that I will miss Christmas in Disneyland this year.

December 11, 2009

Air Travel

Filed under: Airline Travel,Travel — Laura Moncur @ 12:40 pm

I was enjoying the prosh sounds of Mod Scene. I imagined that at any moment Michael Caine could walk up to me and ask for a shag. Then this song came on: Air Travel by Chris Farlowe.

It was a song extolling the convenience and joys of air travel. As far as I could tell, it wasn’t being ironic.

Here are the lyrics:

Air travel (air travel) it’s the thing of the day
Air travel (air travel) it’s doin’ fine
So come on everybody now let’s get on board
We`re gonna take a trip around the world

We’re gonna take a little trip up to China
Just to see the China wall
We’re gonna take a trip over to Niagara
Just to see the pretty waterfall


We’re gonna take a little trip up to Norfolk
Just to see them build a great big ship
We’re gonna take a trip over to New Orleans
Just to see the girls shake their hips


When all of this is over
I know it’ll be too soon
But we’ll all come over to my house
And we will dance by the light of the moon


Can you imagine it? A time when people ENJOYED flying in an airplane? No strip searches at security. No elbows and shoulders crowding you for hours. I imagine it to look a lot like this:

Click to see full size United Airlines ad

Ad via: vintage_ads: United Airlines

December 7, 2009

Twitter Updates for 2009-12-07

Filed under: Site News — Laura Moncur @ 4:00 pm

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December 2, 2009

Disney Parks Channel on YouTube

Filed under: Amusement Parks — Laura Moncur @ 12:15 pm

Did you know that Disney had a YouTube channel about their amusement parks and cruises? I had no idea, but I’ve spent the last hour or two enjoying it!

Here are my favorites:

The 40th Anniversary of the Haunted Mansion: I love the Haunted Mansion, so seeing this video with it’s history made me happy today.

A Model Day at the Magic Kingdom: This GORGEOUS tilt-shift video makes Disneyland look like a scale model. Watch it in full screen mode so that you don’t miss a thing. LOVELY!

Barack Obama Joins Hall of Presidents: I had no idea that Disney World had a Hall of Presidents. Just seeing this video makes me want to go to Florida NOW!

Of course, you’ll NEVER see something like this on Disney Park’s YouTube channel. Here is a snippet of Be Our Guest, in which a dancer topples his cart. Keep an eye open on the right side of the screen at the 0:36 mark.

December 1, 2009

Twitter Updates for 2009-12-01

Filed under: Site News — Laura Moncur @ 4:00 pm

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