Opryland Hotel, Nashville

July 28, 2005

One of Rod's favorite things is the buffet breakfast at the Opryland Hotel. We started the morning with the nice breakfast and spent a good bit of time walking around through the wonderful gardens.

The featured exhibit was called Summerfest and featured sand sculptures. Rod is by the title piece. Brenda found some beautiful hibiscus as we walked around the garden.

We thought Ashleigh and Jordan might enjoy pictures of the wonderful sand sculptures that were on display in the gardens of Opryland. Grandma Brenda poses with an elaborate sand castle.

Granddad Rod with the opposite side of the castle.

Grandma Brenda examines the detail of a bridge on one side of the castle.

But she has to be careful not to get too close to the other side of the castle! A sleeping dragon lies there and she certainly doesn't want to wake him up.

This castle took a lot of detailed sand work and two tons of sand to complete.

We kept looking back at this amazing castle and its craftmanship as we continued on through the garden. A truly magical-looking castle.

As we continued on around the garden we encountered this amazing sea turtle with sea fans and coral.

Continuing around the coral reef, we find a fish in more coral beyond the brain coral heads. There is even part of a large star.

There were different kinds of gatherings and a kind of festive spirit here, so we kept thinking about Ashleigh and Jordan and the things they might enjoy. We also thought about Joan Melton as we saw the sewing groups and the displays of quilting.

The enclosed gardens, totalling probably nearly 10 acres, are always a delight.

We followed around a guy who was watering some of the plants, and the water droplets added to the beauty of the blooms.

I always enjoy the synchronized fountains. We watched as they played God Bless America with synchronized motion of the elements of the fountain.

The Fairfield where we were staying looked out over a peaceful meadow and you could see the large structure of the Opryland Hotel in the distance.

On the morning we left the Fairfield I saw the faint sundog shown at left. It was remarkable to see this ice crystal phenomenon it the sky on July 29, particularly after the 100°F heat of two days ago. It was a cool and pleasant morning after the passage of a cool front.

To Park City, Utah

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