O beautiful for halcyon skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the enameled plain!
God shed his grace on thee
Till souls wax fair as earth and air
And music-hearted sea!
- from America the Beautiful, Words by Katharine Lee Bates,
Melody by Samuel Ward
I spent most of the last week among various mountain ranges, from Tennessee to Pennsylvania. I love living near the ocean, but traveling through all the various terrain America has to offer really puts me in awe of God's creation. I have written about my surreal experience going through the Shenandoah Valley at sunrise on my way to Tennessee. On the way back I passed through it at sunset for an altogether different experience. Although I was on the wrong side of the car to take a good picture of either sunrise or sunset, I have selected a few of the many beautiful shots I got to offer a sampling of what we saw on our return trip.
Leaving western Tennesse, the Cumberland Plateau:
Cows graze comfortably in between the interstate and the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina, as seen from Tennessee:
Sunset over the Shenondoahs tinted the entire sky of Virginia in wondrous colors:
We even passed directly under a rainbow in that same valley, as seen on the left side of this picture:
The Pennsylvania mountains welcomed us with bright green valleys in the morning:
And, always a great sight welcoming me home to New York, Manhattan as seen from the George Washington Bridge:
I love all of America, but most of all I love New York, and appreciate it all the more after having spent time elsewhere.