There are 180 photographs I took while travelling USA. Clicking on any of the below thumbs gets you to the respective gallery.
As long as I can remember I have been travelling to the USA. Already as a little girl, this bug was planted. When I was 2 years old we had been living at Denver, Colorado for one year.
My father was with the German air force and had a technical course for that year there. It was fall 1967 until fall 1968.
My first conscious travel was a gift from my parents. That was 1994. Since then I have travelled across the pond from time to time. Sometimes with less, sometimes with more time between the travels, just according to my bank account.
My favourite area is most definitely the west with its national parks and natural wonders, such as the Grand Canyon, Yosemite National Park und most of all the Yellowstone National Park. But cities such as San Francisco, Seattle and even Los Angeles, I do like as well.
Where in the beginning I travelled by organised bus round trip today I do it unorganised on my own. The bus round trips are certainly not bad for the newbie but personally I quickly had enough of the lunch stops, because oh yes we need to eat and 5 minute photo stops where it was actually really beautiful and where I would have liked to spend more time. Also, being in a group of about 40 people makes it really hard to get in contact with the locals. Nope, nowadays I do it on my own.
Since I do take pictures I am so much more independent, can stay wherever I like it and most of all stop wherever I like it. Funny though is when I walk in the cities. There was more than one occasion I got stopped by police. The American in general doesn't like to walk but rather likes to drive the car. But you see so much more if you walk. An exception certainly is Los Angeles. Since it is so big you really do need a car to get from A to B. The only problem driving in the USA being a German is the speed limit. Also here I got stopped more than I liked by police. I simply cannot drive slowly!
Travelling within the USA is truly easy. The people are curious, open, approachable and very helpful.
This is a little anecdote: 1996 I ought to travel to the USA for training purposes by my then employer. To Grass Valley to be precise. The problem was that I couldn't get a flight neither to San Francisco nor to Los Angeles at the time I should have been over there. Thus we booked a flight going from Frankfurt -> Minneapolis -> Seattle. I had negotiated a one week holiday and that the company paid for the rental car and the overnight stays and I in return would drive from Seattle to Grass Valley. Well, Grass Valley lies towards Lake Tahoe und thus I drove south and took along Mount St. Helens as a sightseeing trip.
I was really late and when I drove away from the volcano to look for an overnight stay I almost run out of gasoline. Thus I drove with braided breath, eyes constantly at the gasoline sign with reduced speed (hey you need less gasoline then) along the curved road. Finally I arrived at the bottom at a tiny village. A handful of houses and one gas station.
I shall never forget the view of this gas station. It was also additionally the only grocery store the village had and in front of it two elderly bearded men sat on a bank. At one of the petrol pumps a truck stood.
First important thing to do, yes, get that much needed gasoline. But the petrol pump was something I had never seen before. One to actually pump! Thus I stood rather irritated in front of it when the truck driver talked to me.
Quickly we engage into a conversation and he explains how to use the petrol pump. After he had learnt of my lust for travel he put a business card into my hand and said I should say hi from him and most definitely go there. I would love it there. Spoke, jumped into his truck and drove away.
There I stood with the business card of a Motel at Bandon, Oregon and decided, well I'll go there tomorrow (it was really worth a visit! The Goonies were shot there - go figure I end up on a location for a movie). In the meantime the two elderly men had approached me and I asked for the next motel. No chance! Both didn't want me to drive another 50 miles and simply put me into one of the village families' homes for the overnight stay.
Such stories have happened to me constantly. I had a Navajo-Guide at the Monument Valley. You go to the visitor centre and book a tour, which goes a certain time to certain areas. He asked me how it came that especially German tourists had such an interest in the Native American history. I explained that it had something to do with a German author, who, despite having never been to the USA, had wrote stories about the friendship of a Native American and a White guy in which the Native American is big-hearted and magnanimous. Those stories are known by every child in Germany and entire generations had grown up with them. Then he proceeded in showing me cave drawings which weren't part of my booked tour.
At Los Angeles a taxi driver brought me from LAX up to Pasadena and didn't want one single cent of money for it. I could do whatever I wanted; he refused to accept the money.
Travelling in the USA is truly easy and the sights, especially when it comes to nature are spectacular. I do have roughly 6,000 colour slides and only very little is on this website. I simply do not find the time to scan them in.
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