Richard Ostrowski


Richard Ostrowski

My job experience involved work in the construction and design area for highway transportation, working 32 years with MDOT and the past 13 years as Senior project Engineer with SME. After 45 years of work in various capacities providing geotechnical evaluation, road construction, and construction materials quality assurance testing I recently started a new phase of my life in retirement.

My interests now revolve around more family activities, my six grand children,traveling and cycling.I have completed two cross country biking tours from Pacific to Atlantic and bicycle touring through 40 states in North America. My travels have provided some interesting adventures in 17 countries in Europe and Asia with plans on continuing travel explorations.

Former TravelPod Member: ostrowski

Joined: January 23rd, 2011
From: Detroit, Michigan lives in Detroit,Michigan,United States,United States
Favorite Book: Mystery Novels
Favorite Movie: Sound of Music
Favorite Music: 1960-1980, Pop and Country
Hobbies: Bicycle Touring,Golfing, Carpentry,Family, and Making Money
Languages: English
Bucket List: I am doing it
Profession: Engineer
Amazing Event: Playing and watching the grand kids grow.
Description: A Detailed Perfectionist

South America » Chile » Santiago Region November 20th 2019

We learned a lot about the history of the countries we visited on this trip. This was due to us in part to the walking tours we took. The guides were very knowledgeable and enjoyed being able to share what they knew. Some of the guides we had have degrees in tourism and love the work they do. We enjoyed the local food. We noticed the dinner hour is much later there. Most people don’t eat dinner until after 7 o’clock in the evening. Some of the restaurants open for lunch then close for a few hours and then open again in the late evening for dinner. Breakfast is not readily available. There are many cafes and pastry shops where people stop for a coffee and some type of roll or pastry. We found that the ... read more

South America » Chile » Santiago Region November 18th 2019

Our last day in Santiago was short. We only had the morning which started out in a Starbuck's for a relaxing coffee and hot tea. We decided to do one last tour of the neighborhood before going back to pack our bags. Our wandering this morning took us to different streets that we had not seen before. We passed many colorful buildings which Bellavista is noted for. The protestors are spray painting graffiti on all the surfaces but are not damaging the street art. It's all done very artistically and some so vibrant. We came upon the Bario Bellavista plaza and stopped to watch all the neighborhood people rushing off to work and kids in uniforms heading to school. There is also a university in this neighborhood and some students were headed there. It was nice ... read more
Art Paintings On Businesses
House Paintings
Art paintings

South America » Chile » Santiago Region November 14th 2019

We have had beautiful weather for all but an hour of rain during our trip. This has made it very enjoyable to walk around and see the sights. Today was another one of those days. We did a walking tour of Santiago with another couple from Chicago. During the walk it was interesting to hear their stories about travels they have been on, where they have been and what they really enjoyed seeing. We began the tour with ride through some of the sections of the city that have been heavily damaged by the demonstrations. Our guide wanted to explain what has been going on and why. He was deeply troubled by the extent of the damage to a city he was born and raised in and loves very much. He showed us the trucks that ... read more
Street art surrounded by graffiti outside our apartment
Police vehicle used to curtail demonstrators
Back of President's Palace

South America » Chile » Santiago Region November 14th 2019

We had a great day today in Chile! This morning we were picked up at our apartment by Hector, our driver, and Francisco ("call me Frank"). There were six people already on board and we stopped to pick up four more tourists. They were from England, Toronto, Australia, and Switzerland. Frank did a superb job of guiding us around and giving us so much background, history and just fun facts about Chile. Hector did an outstanding job of driving us around since in the city many of the traffic signals are torn down or nonfunctional because of the demonstrations. He maneuvered around very well. On the road we made a stop to enjoy a chicha, which is a Chilean drink and a caramel like dessert. Both were quite good. Our first destination was Valparaiso , Chile. ... read more
Citrus farms
Grape Orchards

South America » Chile » Santiago Region November 12th 2019

Moved on to country number three this morning. We are now in Santiago, Chile. As the plane was approaching Chile the pilot made everyone aware of the beautiful site as we were nearing the Andes Mountains. That's the only snow we will see on this trip. It was a site to behold. Getting through Customs here was very quick as not many "foreigners" were coming in on this plane. The flight was full with citizens of Chile. We arranged our transportation to the apartment where we will be staying and got on the road with a few other tourists. One couple was staying near the airport so no issues there. Three other girls were staying near the government buildings. Little did we know it was a National Strike Day here in Santiago. The driver couldn't,t get ... read more
Santiago Icon
Plaza de Armas
My turn

South America » Argentina » Buenos Aires November 10th 2019

Another full day in Buenos Aires. We are getting pretty good at navigating our way around using the subway system. It really is much better than traveling the city streets because of the volume of cars and buses whipping around. Our first destination was the Plaza de Mayo. It is located at the center of Buenos Aires And is the main square. It is a commemoration of the May Revolution on 1810, the first steps towards Argentina's independence from Spain in 1816. Seats of Government are located around the Plaza. At the center of the Plaza if the May Pyramid which was constructed to commemorate independence from Spain. We were able to see the changing of the guard at the Cabildo. The building was the seat of power during the time Argentina was colonized by Spain. ... read more
Bridge of a Woman
Port de Madero
Locks of Love

South America » Argentina » Buenos Aires November 9th 2019

Today was busy with places to go and much to see. We started out very early this morning to join a walking tour. Unfortunately they left before we arrived even though we were on time. Luckily we had planned ahead and had another walking tour in our plans starting one hour later. Maybe it was a good thing we missed the first because the second was very good. Dominique, the tour guide, has a degree in tourism and is very dedicated to her job. She did an excellent job and we learned many interesting facts about Buenos Aires and Argentinian history. We stopped to view the Obelisco which is a national monument in the center of the city. It is a place where people from the city gather to celebrate events. The Teatro Colon was visited ... read more
Sante Fe Avenue, widest street as listed in Guinness Book of World Records
Teatro Colon-side view
Teatro Colon -front view

South America » Argentina » Buenos Aires November 8th 2019

Today was not as eventful as the past few days since we spent 12 hours in transit either in taxis to or from the airport, taking two planes, and layovers . It's all part of the travel and can't be helped. All this moving around went very smoothly so all was good! We are now in Buenos Aires and staying in the Palermo neighborhood. This is another huge city with a population of 6 million people. After checking in we walked around several of the streets around here. There are numerous cafes and bakeries. We haven't seen a doughnut yet. The bakeries have all kinds of fancy cakes, tarts, fruity specialties, creamy deserts and all kinds of rolls. There are also little stores for daily needs like our party stores at home except many of them ... read more
One of the many bakeries
Busy streets in Palermo neighborhood

South America » Brazil » Rio de Janeiro November 7th 2019

During breakfast this morning we made a last minute decision to switch our plans for the day and do an historical walking tour. We were very pleased that we changed our plans. We learned a lot about the history of Rio. Our guide was English speaking and was very informative. Our first stop was the Convent of Saint Anthony. It is the oldest religious site in Rio. We learned an interesting fact about St. Anthony in Rio. She asked what people pray to St. Anthony for. A couple from New York and I both said he helps find lost items. Not here though. She said he is the Patron Saint of Marriage. The story goes if you want to find a spouse you fill a bowl of water and put in a statue of St. Anthony ... read more
Tent Vendors downtown Rio
Busy Downtown shopping street
Colombo's Bakery

South America » Brazil » Rio de Janeiro November 6th 2019

Today was a long day but a most enjoyable one. It began with breakfast in the hotel restaurant serving eggs, sausage, bacon, sweets, fruits, lunchmeats, cheeses, cereal, yogurt, breads, juices, coffee or tea. It was a very nice beginning to our day. Since there was so much ground to cover today with sights we wanted to see we decided to go with a tour group which worked out very well. Our first stop was at the Seleron Steps. These were created by a Chilean born artist, Jorge Seleron, as a tribute to the Brazilian people. He covered the steps between the neighborhoods of Lapa and Santa Teresa with ceramic tiles in the color of the Brazilian flag. He began in 1990 and completed them in 2013 after covering them with over 2000 tiles with 300 of ... read more
View from a top of a mountain
Another city view from a mountain top (Copacabana)
Coastal Bay Area

Tot: 0.313s; Tpl: 0.007s; cc: 7; qc: 84; dbt: 0.0851s; 1; m:domysql w:travelblog (; sld: 1; ; mem: 1.2mb