travel / destinations


Most of the (140!) members of the CAA group on this trip to the Royal Windsor Horse Show will be arriving tomorrow (Tuesday), but a few people are already here in England.

A.J. and I arrived a few days early so we could enjoy a couple of days’ vacation in London. Yesterday was a gorgeous, sunny, almost hot day, and we walked and walked and walked. Nearly ten miles, all over Kensington Gardens and Notting Hill.

A slight detour took us over to the Victoria & Albert Museum, and near there, we came across a display of very early automobiles / horseless carriages. It turns out that the day before was the 120th anniversary of the (official) repeal of Britain’s “red flag act,” although it was apparently still enforced for at least six more months.

So here are a few horseless carriages – and close-ups – that you may enjoy …

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This tricycle-looking contraption is a replica of the first patented internal-combustion-engine-powered automobile, invented by Carl Benz and built in Germany in 1885/86. The original vehicle had a .75-horsepower, single-cylinder petrol engine.

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And this runabout-with-an-engine is a replica of Henry Ford’s first vehicle, which he built in his shed in 1896. The original vehicle had a whopping 4 horsepower, from a two-cylinder ethanol engine.

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This beauty is an original steam-powered automobile, built by the Stanley Motor Carriage Company (USA) in 1903. It had a 6.5-horsepower, twin-cylinder steam engine. This particular vehicle has since had a supplementary water tank added, which has boosted the car’s range to about 60 miles.

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Finally, here are a few close-up images of pieces and parts of some of the other vehicles that were on display, plus two of them heading out for their parade around the block (led by a man waving a red flag, as required, of course).

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We’ve had some rather lengthy radio silence here on the CAA blog lately, but stay tuned!

I’m heading to England this weekend and, starting on Tuesday, I’ll be sharing stories and photos from this year’s CAA trip to the Royal Windsor Horse Show.

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A group of us — CAA Board Members, CAA members, and friends and family members who didn’t want to miss out on the experience — are enjoying several days in Bermuda, where, as you might imagine, the beaches are GORGEOUS …
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As part of Thursday evening’s group activity, we all gathered at the home of one of the local CAA members to meet his family’s horses and ponies, and view their carriage collection …

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And we were fortunate to see a display of “hats through history” … a display that included information about all the various styles of hats over the years, historic photos of Bermudians in hats, and examples like the ones below, all handmade using local materials … plants, in fact.

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Here, finally, are some photos from last Sunday’s cones competition at the World Equestrian Games.

As you already know, Boyd Exell won the individual gold medal. He was the last driver to tackle the cones course, and he had a double-clear round to win the gold medal. After finishing the course, he patted his wheelers and set off on a victory lap … which his horses sure seemed to enjoy.

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With his own double-clear round just before Boyd’s, Chester Weber secured the individual silver medal …

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I missed being able to photography any of Misdee Wrigley Miller’s dressage test, so here are a few photos of her trip through the cones course …

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And that’s it … I hope you’ve enjoyed your virtual visit to the Driving Championship at this year’s World Equestrian Games in France!

I meant to mention this earlier in the week, but I hope you’ve figured it out by now regardless. I’ve been keeping you up to date on the Driving Championship at the World Equestrian Games via my CAA Twitter account, which you can read three different ways: my three most recent Tweets on the right of this page, at the CAA’s Twitter page online, or through your own Twitter account (I’m @CarriageAssoc). So by now you should know that Boyd Exell (AUS) won the individual gold medal, Chester Weber (USA) won silver, and Theo Timmerman (NED) won bronze. In the team competition, the Dutch won gold, the Germans won silver, and the Hungarians won bronze. I’m still going through my photos from the cones competition, but I hope to have those up soon. After the awards ceremony, our CAA group came back to our hotel in lovely Trouville sur Mer, and I must admit that I enjoyed a walk down to the beach (and a scoop of ice cream) rather than an afternoon in front of my computer!

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