All good things must come to an end…


Alas, road trips don’t last forever. Since I’m not retired, I had to go back to work at the end of our road trip several years ago (and I’m still working, too).

After we left Zion National Park, we drove to California and went up highway 395 on the eastern side of the state and took highway 20 up the eastern side of the Sierras into Yosemite. At the top of highway 20 (Tioga Pass) there are several lakes that I dearly love. Probably my favorite is Ellery Lake (at about 9000-9500′ elevation) where I’ve spent many wonderful days camping and fishing with my friend, Ken.

Another lake, the one that is captured in today’s photo, was of Tioga Lake (where I’ve also spent days fishing with Ken).  On this particular morning, we arrived just a short while after sunup. It was cold even though it was July 4. There was no wind and it was perfectly still. I knew I had to shoot this lake under those conditions with the perfect reflections. I wasn’t disappointed with the result. How I’d love to go back there again and relive some of those memories and sights! This view is looking southward from the north shore of the lake.

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: (History Channel) – in 1981, a hunger strike by Irish nationalists at the Maze Prison in Belfast in Northern Ireland was called off after seven months and 10 deaths. The first to die was Bobby Sands, the imprisoned Irish Republican Army (IRA) leader who initiated the protest on March 1, 1981–the fifth anniversary of the British policy of “criminalization” of Irish political prisoners.

In 1972, Sands was arrested and convicted of taking part in several IRA robberies. Because he was convicted for IRA activities, he was given “special category status” and sent to a prison that was more akin to a prisoner of war camp because it allowed freedom of dress and freedom of movement within the prison grounds. He spent four years there.

After less than a year back on the streets, Sands was arrested in 1977 for gun possession near the scene of an IRA bombing and sentenced to 14 years in prison. Because the British government had enacted a policy of criminalization of Irish terrorists in 1976, Sands was imprisoned as a dangerous criminal in the Maze Prison, south of Belfast. During the next few years, from his cell in the Maze, he joined other IRA prisoners in protests demanding restoration of the freedoms they had previously enjoyed under special category status. In 1980, a hunger strike was called off when one of the protesters fell into a coma. In response, the British government offered a few concessions to the prisoners, but they failed to deliver all they had promised, and protests resumed. Sands did not directly participate in the 1980 hunger strike, but he acted as the IRA-appointed leader and spokesperson of the protesting prisoners.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: German leader Adolf Hitler took an incredible 74 different types of medication, including crystal methamphetamine, according to a report compiled by American intelligence officials.


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