Day 932: Napa Valley

The Napa River runs south to Vallejo, California, and near there enters the north end of San Francisco Bay.  Laetitia led a tour of winery visits and wine tastings in the Napa Valley. For many years the Valley has been one of California’s leading wine regions.

The Napa runs south through the vale
Passing vineyards with grapes red and pale
And wineries fine
With exquisite wine
That a tour there is sure to unveil.

Day 931: Stanley Hotel

Laetitia led a tour group through Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado.  Afterwards, they visited the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park.  Stephen King and his wife stayed in room 217 there in 1974.  According to legend, he had a dream that night and the next day began writing The Shining.

Hotel Stanley, Room two seventeen
Stephen King dreamed a dream not serene
And when the day dawned
The Shining was spawned,
Book, film and now as opera seen.

Day 930: Madeira

Madeira is considered to be part of Portugal and, as such, belongs to the European Union.  Thus, for Europeans, travel there is domestic and avoids border-crossing hassles.  In addition to tourism, Madeira is known for its bananas and fortified wine.

Subtropical but not too hot
Is Madeira, the vacation spot,
Its fortified wine
And its bananas fine,
Bring tourists to visit a lot.

Day 929: Madeira m’Dear

Because of its proximity to Europe, Madeira has for many years been a favorite vacation spot for Europeans.  Thus, the fortified wine that bears its name is familiar to them.  Many Americans, however, know the wine only from a humorous song called, “Have some Madeira, m’dear,” performed and recorded by the Limelighters and by English humorists, Flanders and Swann.  Michael Flanders and Donald Swan (now both deceased) wrote it and more than 100 other comic songs during the mid-twentieth century.  They performed many of these on stage and recorded them during the vinyl record era.

Like fine wine, clever wit without peer
Swann and Flanders’ Madeira, m’dear
Whose philandering philatelist
Was often a catalyst
For evenings of laughter and cheer.