Kittie Howard


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Cooperstown's Baseball Hall of Fame; Blog Hop's Dream Vacation: Churchill, Canada

Cooperstown's Baseball Hall of Fame was a nostalgic-filled visit that warmed the heart. But now that the suitcases have been unpacked and a certain degree of order has been restored, our holiday trip seems deeper in time than a week ago. Worry about the weather and anticipation and excitement about the trip have blurred into a feeling of contentment that nourishes memories.

I hope your holiday memories are just as warm and apologize for taking off without wishing each of you a Happy Holiday. But with that storm fast approaching the East Coast, we decided to leave a day early and rushed around in a crazy, organized fashion that kicked in to make it happen, a decision that turned out for the best.


Heading north from Virginia, I-95 wasn't clogged, something to smile about in spite of the bitter cold.


New York was a winter wonderland of green and white, even if my camera didn't think so.

After a fabulous Thanksgiving with friends in Rhinebeck, New York, at the Beekman Arms, the oldest continually operated inn in the United States, we went to Cooperstown, New York, to visit the Baseball Hall of Fame. We'd stopped briefly years ago on a return trip from Toronto, Canada, just long enough to whet hub's appetite to see more.


The Museum's impressive Hall of Greats inspired . . . a strike out doesn't mean the game's over.



Moments of reflection . . .  distinguished careers . . . amazing statistics . . . legends that live inside kids of all ages.

This sidebar really caught my attention. With sports so popularized in the media, I hadn't realized how thin the cutting edge was, a reminder as to how important those stats are and not necessarily the personality hype around the player. Along with skill, dedication and hard work are important. There's Kardashian 'success' and then there's the real thing, the illusive 'it' in life money can't buy.






















Hub was a catcher in both high school and college. A man's man who not only talks the talk but walks the walk, the team awarded him the game ball for the only game of cricket he's ever played so you know he's got his baseball act together. I took this photo of a bronze baseball scene outside through one of the Museum's windows.

Like sports aficionados everywhere, he knows his stats, but hub's also a member of the Red Sox Nation, where is loyalty is absolute. Thanks to our trip, he now has a Red Sox clock on the wall in his man cave, with a faux marble World Series plaque added to his collection, as is the new fleece jacket. Hmmm, I think the move this spring to our house in North Carolina comes just in time. . . which brings me to what's really been occupying time here: renovating the kitchen as we're selling our condo. Anyone who's been through the renovation process knows there's no translation to the mess it creates and the time it occupies. In the meantime, one step at a time . . . we're almost there.  

I've never known a baseball fan who didn't have a role model. Hub's is Ted Williams, the legendary great who suspended his Red Sox career twice, in 1943 for three years to serve in World War II and in parts of 1952 and 1953 as a USMC aviator in the Korean War, returning to baseball both times to a career that kept getting better and better, earning him a place in the Hall of Fame his first time at bat.
Norman Rockwell's iconic 1949 "Saturday Evening Post" cover, sometimes referred to as 'baseball's Mona Lisa,' invoked hub's memories of passions tempered by raindrops . . . "there's no crying in baseball" . . . 
. . . warm memories he shared as we walked back to our room at the Cooper Inn . . . 

. . . as if the icy footprints were a heart's song . . . 





the song every kid hums as he/she prepares the glove for spring practice. . . "take me out to the ball game . . . " 

* * * * *

My dream vacation would be to visit Churchill, Canada, on the western shore of the Hudson Bay in the province of Manitoba, to see the polar bears. Global warming has so adversely affected their habitat I fear the polar bear will eventually become extinct. It would be an awesome experience to see these magnificent animals in a natural setting.

25 comments:

Julie Flanders said...

Oh, I'd love to visit Cooperstown someday. It seems fabulous. And I love the pic of the Cooper Inn! What a lovely place to stay. Glad you had such a nice time, Kittie.
And thanks again for taking part in our Hop!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Can't buy your way into the Hall of Fame - you have to earn it. Never realized how few had actually played the sport. What a great Thanksgiving treat to visit the Hall!

D.G. Hudson said...

Baseball is hub's fave sport and I've been a fan since I was a kid (with a little brother who played in Little League).

Great that you got to take in the museum. We'd like to do that someday. Thanks for sharing.

Linda Starr said...

look at those snow scenes, wonderful

Inger said...

I was wondering where you were. It sounds like you had a wonderful trip. I've never been there, but I can see it must be a great experience for a baseball fan.

Jayne said...

This post was a lovely introduction to baseball for me. Being in the UK (and not amazingly sporty), it's a sport I know nothing about, so this was lovely, and I really enjoyed your captions under each photo. Sounds like you both had a wonderful trip!

S.B. Stewart-Laing said...

Very cool dream destination! I'm pretty ignorant about baseball, but I think any record-setting athletic feats are pretty dang impressive :)

Sherry Ellis said...

I've never been to the baseball hall of fame. My nephew would probably love to see it. He's a huge baseball fan!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

I can imagine how much fun you had on your visit to Cooperstown. We went to the Babe Ruth Museum in Baltimore years ago, and even that wee place was fun to see.

Good choice to see the polar bears. It's a sobering thought that they might become extinct in the wild.

By the way, I did an Amazon review on your book a couple weeks ago, and I'd be happy to copy and paste the review onto Goodreads after you list it there. Oh, and one typo you might want to correct in your book... you have Bonnie and Clyde dying in 1994. (Of reeeeeeally old age?)

William Kendall said...

Beautiful shots!

I haven't been to Cooperstown, but I'd love to see it for myself someday.

Carrie-Anne said...

My fourth grade class field trip was to Cooperstown, though we went to the Farmers' Museum instead. I was huge into the 19th century at that time, so it was a dream come true for me. Maybe someday I'll visit the Baseball Hall of Fame.

Nicki Elson said...

It would be AMAZING to see Polar Bears in their natural habitat.

So glad you had fun on your trip and that the weather didn't get in your way. Good luck getting through the renovations! Hope there's at least some fun in it for you (yes, amidst all that baseball, it's the home decor that jumps out at me.)

Norma Beishir said...

I never thought about it as a vacation destination until now, but it does look like fun!

Kate Larkindale said...

What a great place to want to go. Polar bears are among my favorite animals and it's so sad that they are going extinct because of global warming.

Vanessa Morgan said...

Beautiful. I love snowy landscapes.

LD Masterson said...

I came by on the Destination blog hop but I loved reading about your visit to Cooperstown. Especially since I am also a member of The Nation.

Lexa Cain said...

The Cooperstown pics were awesome, and I loved the info about the Beekman Arms. I'm from NY, but never knew it was the oldest running inn. I sure hope you get to go to Churchill sometime soon. Thanks so much for joining the hop! :-)

Kim Lajevardi said...

I hope you make it to Churchill. Nice pics from Cooperstown!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Kittie - I hope you're healing and recovering. The break away sounds like a great recuperative time .. the Coopers Inn looks quite luxurious .. while the Museum reminds us how good you have to be to be successful and reach the peak ... dedication, determination and persistence with pure love for the game ... Ted Williams epitomises a great man - no wonder your hubby admired his sportsmanship.

Cheers Hilary

Cathrina Constantine said...

My sister travels to Cooperstown yearly with her boys for baseball. Manitoba, Canada is supposed to be beautiful. My relative live around Georgian Bay in a small village called Victoria Harbour. And it is quaint and pretty.

Shannon Lawrence said...

Is that the town that gets flooded with polar bears during a certain period each year? I would love to see a polar bear in the wild, as well. Looks like your trip was a good one!

The Warrior Muse

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Every so often CBC runs a commercial about Mr. Robinson's first day playing in Montreal where he got his start, his mother sitting in the stands. My sons wouldn't have known that without the commercial. Must visit the Hall of Fame one day. My mother was a huge Toronto Blues fan. Me, I'm basically hooked on hockey. Got to hug the Stanley Cup once. That was thrilling.

Ms Sparrow said...

I'm so glad that Norman Rockwell's painting is in the museum. It's time his wonderful works of Americana were recognized for the great art they are!

Jeremy Bates said...

great choice! im from canada but have never been to manitoba.... though anywhere in canada really is pretty spectacular!

Joana andrade said...

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