19. May 2013 14:12
Yesterday (May 18, 2013), I watched Preakness Thoroughbred Horse Race on the TV. This is the second leg of the Triple Crown of US Thoroughbred Horse Racing (THR) - one of the big sporting event in USA. The three legs are:
1. Kentucky Derby - held in Louisville, Kentucky
2. Preakness - held in Baltimore, Maryland
3. Belmont Stakes - held in Belmont Park, New York
The horse that wins all three races is known as the Triple Crown Winner. The last time there was a Triple Crown winner was in 1978! Since I came to USA (1969), there have been three Triple Crown Winners:
1. Secretariat in 1973
2. Seattle Slew in 1977
3. Affirmed in 1978
The THR season starts around May every year. The horse that wins the Kentucky Derby becomes a hopeful for the Triple Crown. This year, the horse named Orb won the first leg. So, he was a favorite to win the Preakness (the second leg). But as the saying goes "the show is not over till the fat lady sings", it was not to be. So, there will not be a Triple Crown this year also. The drought continues. The horse that won is Oxbow.
Belmont Stakes will run on June 8. I plan to watch it also.
It is my hope that there would be one more Triple Crown in my lifetime!
Kalamazoo, MI, USA
UPDATE: June 6, 2015
It is hard to believe that my wish came true in just two years! In the summer of 2015, we visited USA after returning to India in October 2013. I had an opportunity to see the Thorooghbred Horse races while there. On June 6, 2015 American Pharoah won the third leg of the Triple Crown thus becoming the #12 Triple Crown Winner!
Hoover, AL, USA
17. May 2013 16:38
1. Detroit Passport Agency (Click here for the webpage)
We live in Kalamazoo (MI) which is almost halfway between Chicago and Detroit. So, to visit the nearest Passport agency office to apply for a passport in person, we had a choice between Chicago and Detroit. I am glad that we chose Detroit. This office does not require you to have a travel itinerary for getting the passport quickly. The website says that “you will not be admitted more than 15 minutes before the scheduled appointment time”. We got there almost one hour before our appointment time. We just went up to the second floor to check the setup. The girl at the security desk asked us “Do you want to go in?” I said, “Not yet. We have the appointment at 12:30”. She was very nice and told us that we can go in. The place was not crowded at all. The lady at the “Appointment Check-in counter” was also very friendly. She checked our papers and gave us a number. We were called in a very short time. The other lady was also very friendly. At the window, the fee schedule is clearly printed. It shows that you can even pick up the passport in person when ready or have it mailed to you either by regular mail (no charge) or by USPS Express mail ($12.72).
It was a very pleasant experience to visit this office (something you can’t say about many government offices). We received our passports in 2 days!