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Summer Begins!

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In America, summer has officially started! We celebrated Memorial Day yesterday, the day on which we honor fallen servicemen and women. The holiday also marks the transition from spring to summer for most Americans. For my family, the Memorial Day weekend is always spent at our American dacha. The same tradition every year, with a big parade, walks in the forest, fishing, barbecues and trying to survive with no Internet and limited mobile reception. I previously showed you my family's RV (recreational vehicle) in this post, which is parked in the wilderness in Fredricksburg, Virginia.

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I don't think these types of portable trailers are so common in Russia, but in America we love them! Many people use them to drive across the country, parking the trailers at National Parks or campgrounds throughout the journey.

1. Each year, the wilderness resort holds an annual Memorial Day parade. The route consists of decorative golf carts, which people use to drive around the grounds. Of course, the American flag is plastered all over the carts and on many of the trailers. Yes, we love our flag. I think it's one of the first things foreigners notice when visiting America - how the flag hangs almost everywhere. People's homes, gas stations, restaurants, cars. Any place imaginable. I've never seen so many flags waving in any other country I've visited, although Israel came pretty close.

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2. A lot of senior citizens participate in the parade and throw out candy to the little kids standing on the route.

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3. My favorite! Pimped out American style. :)

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4. The parade also is a contest, and the 2014 winner is pictured in this photo. Very creative! They decorated the top of the golf cart with a mock battle and army figurines, which all little boys have throughout the world. People also decorate their RVs and campers. My family won third place this year. The prize is a free night's stay in one of the campers available for rent.

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5. Kids also decorate bikes and ride the route. This year, almost 100 participants! The largest I've ever seen.

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6.
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7. You will recognize this guy, my nephew Aidan. For some reason, he's scared of riding the bike. Strange for a little boy, but he's finally getting the hang of it and participated in the parade for the first time this year. Six years old now!! But still using training wheels on the bike.

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8.
Aidan


9. Those too small to ride bikes get pulled by parents in red wagons.

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10. Redneck traffic jam before the parade starts. :) Pick-up trucks trying to get to the route before the small road is closed off.

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11. Parade observers.

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12.  Mini soldier. Sorry for the blurry photo, probably too many beers before the parade and I became lazy with the camera. Forgive me - it was a holiday weekend and time for relaxation, not blog work! :)

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13. I spend most of my time just wandering around the woods and admiring the lovely scenery. We've had a lot of rain lately, so water was steadily flowing from the dam. On the backside, a nice lake.

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14. Lake.

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15. Little fisherman.

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16. Relaxing in the clouds. My family purchased a golf cart this winter, so it's the first summer we can ride around the grounds in it. Very fun to drive, especially on the gravel roads.

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17. A friendly visitor arrived while I was sitting on the pier. The lovely swan traveled all the way from the other side of the lake to visit me, probably with the hope of receiving a tasty treat but I had no snacks to throw.

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Nothing exciting with this report, just scenes from everyday American life. I already explained the history of my family's ties to this wilderness resort last year, so visit the post if you're interested in all the details. We come here a few weekends each month to escape the chaos of life every summer. For me, the worst and most uncomfortable season of the year, but I always find comfort in the forest. Do you have such a place?

In the DC area, the annual "Rolling Thunder" festival also is held each Memorial Day weekend. Hundreds of thousands of motorcyclists visit the city to honor fallen veterans, and the city becomes infiltrated with bikers. Very cool scene, which I wrote about last year. See post below.

Happy summer to all! I know most people like warm weather more than cold, and I'm a strange exception. It's the most popular time for vacations, and America becomes crowded with tourists from all over globe. Does anyone have exciting trips or adventures planned this summer?

Related Posts

Rolling Thunder                                                          
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Dacha - American Style!
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Comments

( 98 comments — Leave a comment )
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(Anonymous)
May. 27th, 2014 03:47 pm (UTC)
One nice RV you have there. No, they are not widespread in Russia - too expensive for Russians.
peacetraveler22
May. 27th, 2014 04:07 pm (UTC)
You can get much cheaper and smaller models that aren't so expensive. My family's RV is in the middle price range.
(no subject) - pasha1980 - May. 27th, 2014 05:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 05:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pasha1980 - May. 27th, 2014 05:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 05:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pasha1980 - May. 27th, 2014 06:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 06:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pasha1980 - May. 27th, 2014 06:49 pm (UTC) - Expand
barabaan
May. 27th, 2014 04:20 pm (UTC)
USSR traditions live in USA.
peacetraveler22
May. 27th, 2014 04:24 pm (UTC)
What USSR traditions?
(no subject) - barabaan - May. 27th, 2014 04:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 04:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - barabaan - May. 27th, 2014 04:57 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 04:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - barabaan - May. 27th, 2014 05:08 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 05:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
real_marsel
May. 27th, 2014 04:26 pm (UTC)
Now I know word 'Jam'.
peacetraveler22
May. 27th, 2014 04:27 pm (UTC)
Traffic jam! Yes it means a lot of cars and slow moving traffic. Of course, I prefer the type of jam you eat (like sweet jelly). :)
(no subject) - real_marsel - May. 27th, 2014 04:40 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 04:46 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - real_marsel - May. 27th, 2014 04:52 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 04:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - real_marsel - May. 27th, 2014 04:56 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 04:58 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - real_marsel - May. 27th, 2014 05:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 05:01 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - real_marsel - May. 27th, 2014 05:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 27th, 2014 05:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - real_marsel - May. 27th, 2014 05:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
notabler
May. 27th, 2014 04:47 pm (UTC)
Lovely place, lovely people. I am sure your beer was lovely, too :)
peacetraveler22
May. 27th, 2014 04:51 pm (UTC)
The beer and food all weekend were delicious! I've lost a bit of discipline lately, and pants are becoming tight!!
mybathroom
May. 27th, 2014 05:32 pm (UTC)
It is a nice post!

Today I've understood that I do love spring and summer and don't like winter (sorry, Shannon. I know you do.)
peacetraveler22
May. 27th, 2014 05:34 pm (UTC)
Will you go on any trips this summer, or just enjoy your walks in the forest? I remember you said you and your wife like to walk in the woods. My nephew loves this golf cart! I think your son would enjoy riding in one also. Little boys are always fascinated by machines. :)
(no subject) - mybathroom - May. 27th, 2014 05:59 pm (UTC) - Expand
yarowind
May. 27th, 2014 06:03 pm (UTC)
So many flags...

I think all is good when it is not so much:)
peacetraveler22
May. 27th, 2014 06:52 pm (UTC)
I have nowhere to hang a flag because I live in an apartment. However, if I owned a home I would have a flag somewhere in the yard.
(no subject) - yarowind - May. 28th, 2014 05:00 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 05:03 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - yarowind - May. 28th, 2014 05:53 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 05:55 pm (UTC) - Expand
old_perduccio
May. 27th, 2014 07:27 pm (UTC)
Gorgeous photos.
The photo #15 surely evokes many a cozy childhood reminiscence for anyone who has spent his summer school vacations in the countryside.
peacetraveler22
May. 27th, 2014 07:35 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I'm sure you can tell by my posts that I prefer countryside locations over concrete jungles and large cities.
qi_tronic
May. 27th, 2014 10:15 pm (UTC)
Funny parade :)

I taught my son to ride a bicycle without supporting wheels when he was 4. And all people around were excited :)
But I had to run a lot holding his shoulders until he reached some speed and got the balance.
When he got the feeling he immediately started to ride it himself. The same day.

Now I'm teaching him to ride inline skates properly, like professional figure skaters do, not like a cow on ice :)

We havent started our dacha season yet and instead visit some parks or historical palaces.
For example this evening we listened to a nightingale in our local park :)

Yes RVs are not common in Russia.
I think trailers are too heavy to carry by our common cars (pickups are not common as well :) ) and buses are too expensive (though I'd like to have one to work on my laptop and sleep while my wife drives it :)) )
Though such small trailers do exist but are used mostly as mobile kiosks.
peacetraveler22
May. 28th, 2014 12:00 am (UTC)
Last year my nephew tried to ride his bike during the parade and became too scared, so my sister ended up running beside him the whole way and pushing him in extreme heat. She almost had a heart attack! :)) I think there's another reason these big RVs aren't common - Russian roads! Difficult to transport from place to place w/a lot of potholes in the road.
(no subject) - qi_tronic - May. 28th, 2014 08:05 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 02:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - May. 28th, 2014 02:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 02:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
Just couple videos :) - xpo_xpo_xpo - May. 30th, 2014 12:19 am (UTC) - Expand
Re: Just couple videos :) - peacetraveler22 - May. 30th, 2014 12:37 am (UTC) - Expand
fesma94
May. 28th, 2014 03:46 am (UTC)
As introvert I prefer the lake and not the parad )))
peacetraveler22
May. 28th, 2014 02:30 pm (UTC)
This is a small parade. It only lasts about five minutes, so an introvert can handle it. :)
andrey_kaminsky
May. 28th, 2014 04:47 am (UTC)
После посещения Индии, Россия это рай на земле
There is no need to leave Russia in the summer. Russia is beautiful in the summer, except mosquitoes. Usually, we use mix of hungover reek of alcohol and fresh beer to ward off mosquitoes. If I had the RV would it add a respectability to me? Would i have stopped to swim drunk and naked in the rivers at night? Here are the difficult questions which life puts before me ...
qi_tronic
May. 28th, 2014 08:19 am (UTC)
Re: После посещения Индии, Россия это рай на земле
Yes, Russia is right between India and the West in terms of general order, clean streets, etc.

I was sooo surprised when I visited the Indian embassy in London.
Outside it was typical central London.
Inside it was typical India with crowds, disorder and people wandering around looking totally confused where to go and what to do.
We just gave our papers to some fat woman in saree without any questions asked :)
But everything finally worked well.

So every nation has their own habits of doing business but the result is often the same.
pro100_petrov
May. 28th, 2014 05:28 am (UTC)
So many flags! For us it is something incredible.
peacetraveler22
May. 28th, 2014 02:31 pm (UTC)
For me, it was incredible when I visited Russia and saw NO flags on private homes. So, there's a big cultural difference between our nations when it comes to flag displays. Although at the Olympics in Sochi I saw many people waving and carrying the Russian flag in public.
(no subject) - pro100_petrov - May. 28th, 2014 04:51 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pro100_petrov - May. 28th, 2014 05:02 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 05:06 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pro100_petrov - May. 28th, 2014 05:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 05:34 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - pro100_petrov - May. 28th, 2014 05:48 pm (UTC) - Expand
general_denikin
May. 28th, 2014 07:58 am (UTC)
>>>I don't think these types of portable trailers are so common in Russia, but in America we love them!<<

As you know lot of Russians have a dream - Americans would live worse than themselves (contrary normal people dream to live better than others). So they come up some bizarre stories about as they put it utterly poverty in US.
One of them - they take pictures of RVs, parking together and make headers to them somewhat like "Many Americans lost their homes because of countrywide bankruptcy and must live in old trailers or their dilapidated cars"
Never park your RV close to the tourist's roads, please!
qi_tronic
May. 28th, 2014 08:25 am (UTC)
But some white trash really live in RVs.
It is the same like Western journalists search for homeless and migrants living in basements in Moscow.
Both things exist but do not represent the real life of the majority.
(no subject) - general_denikin - May. 28th, 2014 09:13 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - May. 28th, 2014 09:17 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - general_denikin - May. 28th, 2014 09:32 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - May. 28th, 2014 09:43 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - general_denikin - May. 28th, 2014 09:58 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - qi_tronic - May. 28th, 2014 10:25 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 02:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 02:36 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - peacetraveler22 - May. 28th, 2014 02:33 pm (UTC) - Expand
xpo_xpo_xpo
May. 29th, 2014 11:28 am (UTC)
Here is Russian RV:
peacetraveler22
May. 29th, 2014 03:50 pm (UTC)
Re: Here is Russian RV:
Yes, totally Russian style!! :))
rider3099
May. 29th, 2014 02:46 pm (UTC)
Oh, so nice day, Shannon! Lovely!
peacetraveler22
May. 29th, 2014 03:49 pm (UTC)
We had beautiful weather all weekend! Very nice temperatures and breezy air!
peacetraveler22
May. 29th, 2014 08:08 pm (UTC)
Yes, this Veterans' scandal is shameful!! Eric Shinseki should immediately be replaced.
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