Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Through the Keyhole - July 2020

JULY 2020
Through the Keyhole
Take a break from your day...

Not your typical company OR newsletter
 "This highly 'orthodox' location has some of the most beautiful people in the world and this tiny country is teeming with lots of things to and see.  The old city has 8 gates whereby the Golden Gate has been sealed since the 16th century." Can you guess the location?" Can you guess the location?

Happy Birthday America!
Well half the year is over and I would say it flew by but I would be lying to you.  It has been one of the strangest years on record and with all that is going on, I just want to have some good old fashioned 4th of July fun.

I remember being a kid during this time of year and celebrating with parades, sparklers, smoke bombs, snakes, roman candles and big fireworks shows.  I also remember playing in a band on a float sponsored by my family's funeral home.  When I think about the many parades I marched in while in the marching band, I remember how hot I was and how long the route seemed to be.

As everyone knows, Independence Day marks the birthday of the United States of America. But here are some fun facts that you may not know about this patriotic day!

Contrary to popular belief, only two Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. The majority of signers penned their signatures on August 2, 1776.

The holiday does not celebrate the signing of the Declaration; it celebrates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence by the Second Continental Congress.

In a now-famous letter to his wife, Abigail, dated July 3, 1776, John Adams made a prediction that the “Second Day of July” would be celebrated as American Independence Day, since the Congress had actually voted to sever ties with Great Britain the day before.

Independence Day became a federal holiday in 1870.

Other countries, including Denmark, England, Norway, Portugal and Sweden also celebrate the Fourth of July as a way to bring in American tourists.

Our country now boasts 318.9 million citizens, but on the first Fourth of July there were only 2.5 million.

The original draft of the Declaration of Independence was lost.

The back of the Declaration of Independence says, “Original Declaration of Independence dated 4th July 1776.”

The Pennsylvania Evening Post was the first newspaper to print the Declaration on July 6, 1776.

In 1989, a man bought a painting for $4 at a Pennsylvania flea market and later discovered, hidden within the same frame, what turned out to be an extremely rare, early printed copy of the Declaration of Independence, that he later sold for $2.4 million!

Some pretty Amazing fireworks for the 4th of July... VIDEO ~15 minutes
Guess the Location Game

Last month the winner of the guess the location game was Leslie Highnockers
 who guessed the right answer.  I appreciate all of the participation.  THANKS FOR PLAYING!
ANSWER: Los Cabos, MX
"Lots of Californians and celebrities flock to this tropical destination where they have about 350 days of sunshine.. The city is known as the "End of the Earth" and is the Striped Marlin Capital of the World.  And if you want to know what is going on, find a copy of the "Gringo Gazette". Can you guess the location?"

Cabo has always been a consistently reliable, warm-weather getaway. In the last few decades, the area has enjoyed much rebuilding and upgrading. What’s emerging is a strong community with its eye on preserving the region’s history and traditions while also making room for new businesses, modern resorts, and, as always, great Mexican food.

However, Los Cabos is mostly a tale of two polarizing cities in one. You can easily divide your stay between Cabo San Lucas, which is full of nightlife, sailing tours, natural beauty, and water-based adventure, and San José del Cabo, with its picturesque Mexican-town atmosphere, art galleries, and gourmet restaurants. If one thing is certain, you’ll never run out of ideas over what to do in Los Cabos.

The first archaeological evidence of human settlement near Los Cabos dates back over 10,000 years ago. One of the first Europeans to set sight on this southern Baja California area was a shipwreck survivor, who told tales on his return home about an island inhabited by ‘Amazons’ filled with pearls and gold.

Los Cabos did not grow substantially until 1917, when an American company established a floating tuna platform and a fish plant in the village. The first sport fishing tourists to visit Los Cabos had to travel by long-range yacht, tiny planes or over 932 miles (1,500 km) of bumpy dirt roads to reach their destination. By the 1930s, the population had reached roughly 400.

More and more Hollywood celebrities discovered Los Cabos after WWII, and the 1950 opening of the posh Las Cruces hotel further increased the village’s popularity as a retreat for the rich and famous. However, access to Cabo became much easier for tourists with more modest budgets after the 1974 construction of Baja California’s main peninsular motorway.

Today, many of the tourists who visit Mexico’s second-fastest growing tourism resort have made the area their permanent home. Most of these newcomers are Mexicans arriving from other parts of the country, along with Americans seeking a warm and peaceful place to retire. American expats form at least 70 percent of the present population.

El Arco refers to the arch-shaped rock formation that makes up a part of the larger Land’s End rock formation, also known as El Finisterra. The Arch famously juts out into the ocean as the extreme southern tip of Baja California, and marks the spot where the Sea of Cortez meets the Pacific Ocean.

There is a phenomenon that occurs every few years in which a beach becomes visible around El Arco as the tide recedes. Sometimes it is even possible to walk under the arch when this occurs. The event is very hard to predict, although there are various theories postulating when exactly it will happen next.

Of all the best Los Cabos excursions on offer, the prime spot for scuba diving can be found near these well-known arches, as it boasts beautiful reef views and plenty of fish. More experienced divers can see the deeper “sandfalls”, a natural phenomenon where sand is seen pouring over rock faces into the underwater canyon below.

San José del Cabo is often referred to as the Striped Marlin Capital of the World, and it is rumored that striped marlin have been caught in Cabo more than anywhere else! Cabo is also home to the Bisbee’s Black and Blue Marlin Fishing Tournament – the world’s richest fishing tournament, which is held every October and boasts a $3 million prize.

Chicks go fishing for big game... ~6 minutes
Cabo Nightlife ~3 minutes
Tour of some luxury resorts in Cabo ~3 minutes
The Bag Piper
As a bagpiper, I play many gigs.
Recently I was asked by a funeral director   to play at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a  pauper's cemetery in the Nova Scotia back country. As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost and, being a typical man, I didn't stop for directions.                
I finally arrived an hour late and saw the funeral guy had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight. There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating lunch. I felt badly and apologized to the men for being late. I went to the side of the grave and looked down and the vault lid was already in place. I didn't know what else to do, so I started to play.
The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around. I played out my heart and soul for this man with no family and friends. I played like I've never played before for this homeless man. And as I played "Amazing Grace", the workers began to weep. They wept, I wept, we all wept together.
When I finished, I packed up my bagpipes and started for my car. Though my head was hung low, my heart was full.                
As I opened the door to my car, I heard one of the workers say, "I never seen anything like that before, and I've been putting in septic tanks for twenty years."

Apparently, I'm still lost … it's a man thing.                  
The Boy on the Beach...
This is an amazing story about a little boy on Normandy Beach.  This would be EXACTLY the opposite of what we are seeing today.
Things Americans do that others
cannot comprehend
Mexican Ingenuity...Leather out of CACTUS
Cool story.  VIDEO ~3 minutes.

Former NASA Engineer Builds The Perfect Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder And Watches Them Battle For The Treats

This is really clever and FUNNY.  Remember the guy who invented the box that punished the people stealing boxes off your front porch?  Same guy. ~21 minutes
Remember These People? 
The Haircut...
father said he'd make a deal with his son,
"You bring your grades up from a C to a B average, study your Bible a little and get your hair cut.
 Then we'll talk about the car."

The boy thought about that for a moment, decided he'd settle for the offer and they agreed on it.

After about six weeks his father said, "Son, you've brought your grades up and I've observed that you have been studying your Bible, but I'm disappointed you haven't had your hair cut."

The boy said, "You know, Dad, I've been thinking about that, and I've noticed in my studies of the Bible that Samson had long hair, John the Baptist had long hair, Moses had long hair, and there's even strong evidence that Jesus had long hair."

(You're going to love the Dad's reply!)

"Did you also notice that they all walked everywhere they went?"
McDonalds Ain't what it used to be...
And Finally...

Cheeseburger chopped salad with
Dill Pickle Vinaigrette


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 6 ounces sharp white cheddar cheese freshly grated
  • 8 cups butter lettuce
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes halved or quartered
  • 1/3 cup chopped dill pickles
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • salt and pepper for seasoning

  • 1/4 cup diced dill pickles
  • 3 tablespoons dill pickle juice from a jar of dill pickles
  • 2 tablespoons diced shallot
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 teaspoons dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil


  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil. Once it's hot, add the ground beef, garlic cloves, salt and pepper. Break the mixture apart with a spoon and cook until browned, stirring over and breaking the pieces into crumbles, for about 6 to 8 minutes. Turn off the heat and sprinkle about 2 ounces of the cheddar over the beef so it slightly melts. You can serve this salad with the beef hot or room temp - so if necessary, you can make this a bit ahead of time!
  2. Place the butter lettuce on a cutting board and run your knife through it to chop it into pieces. Ideally we want everything in uniform pieces so each bite is perfect. Chop up the lettuce, then throw it in a bowl with a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss it well. Add the tomatoes next, the dill pickles and the diced onion. Add the remaining shredded cheese. Toss the salad well, drizzle on the dressing and serve!

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the pickles, pickle juice, shallot, garlic, mustard and honey. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and whisk until the mixture comes together. While whisking, stream in the olive oil until the dressing emulsifies. This stays great in the fridge for a few days!