Friday, July 8, 2016

Living With Opulence

Plattekill, New York
KOA New York City/Newburgh

After yesterday's whirlwind tour of New York City we were still tired this morning, but knew we had some places to see.  

We left early for Hyde Park which is only 18 miles away.  By leaving early we thought we'd be back in the early afternoon.  Wrong again.

Our first stop was the home of Franklin D. Roosevelt.  Once again that Golden Eagle Pass saved us a lot of money.  They were just ready to begin a tour so we didn't have to wait. 

Bill and I were so lucky that we had a very knowledgeable park ranger who knew how to deliver all that knowledge.
Having toured Warm Springs about 6 weeks ago we learned a lot about FDR.  That knowledge just highlighted this tour.
All of the furnishing and clothing were originals.
The home was elegantly furnished.
This is the bedroom FDR used.  Fala, his dog, slept on the chair at the bottom of the bed.
We exited from the second floor down the steps.  This is the side of the home.

It's almost impossible to tell where the addition was added.

The barn behind Bill is original.

FDR requested to be buried here on the grounds.  Eleanor was also buried here.

Following the tour of the home, we walked back over to the library.

As we entered the library and museum I wasn't expecting much.  After all this is the first presidential library which opened in 1941.  It can't be much.  It didn't look that large on the outside.  Was I ever wrong?

Bill is thinking of throwing  his hat in the ring.  

After the events in Dallas last night, I thought this appropriate.  

FDR loved his private study.  

I was surprised that I didn't see anything from his stamp collections.  Maybe I missed it.  There was so much to see.

Two miles up the road was the Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic Site. Since we spent more time in the home and presidential library than we anticipated we decided not to visit Eleanor's home.  We stopped to eat at another diner.  It's not what we would call a diner.  This place had a six page menu and also an drink menu.  We've noticed that what we would call a restaurant is called a diner in this part of the country.  

The day's specials were printed on a full page.  I chose a cajun shrimp salad.  It was delicious and the homemade bread that came with it us was perfect.  

We were hoping the food would give us enough energy so we could finish the day with a trip through the mansion.  I was so hoping I could try one of those huge pies for dessert, but I never expected the salad to be so large.  

When we drove into the grounds of the Vanderbilt Mansion, we noticed scaffolding around the front.  As we went up to the ticket counter, the lady in front of us spent $20.  There was a sign that said the mansion was not air conditioned.  At this point, I'm thinking maybe I'm too tired and we should forget it.  The lady at the counter looked at Bill's Golden Eagle Pass and said "no charge".  She told us the tour was just starting.  Once again our timing was perfect.  

The park ranger was very informative.  He didn't have grey hair, but he knew his stuff.  
We were told all the facts and figures on how rich they were.  Our park ranger told a story of how they had a party and had sand covering the floor as a beach theme.  They added diamonds, rubies, sapphires and emeralds to the sand.  The guests were allowed to dig for the gems.  The party cost around 3 million dollars.

Here's some photos of the mansion.


The gardens were nice, but I must say I expected more.

This Gingko tree is said to be the oldest in the USA.

Since the mansion was primarily used in the spring and fall, the views of the Hudson would have been better without the leaves on all the trees.  

It's getting late and I can't absorb any more history or sights.  

As we start back to the RV park, I notice this sign.  
Oops, I forgot.  That was where we wanted to stop for lunch.

We were also going to stop at the longest pedestrian bridge.  I couldn't take any more steps if I wanted too.  My foot has really swollen today.  It must be the weather as some clouds started to come in.  

We were able to extend our stay tomorrow after a lot of confusion at the front desk.  

Turtle Safely......

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