The Old Barn in the Rain

Somewhere between here and North Carolina…
Big Barn At The End of the Road

Actually, the barn is in or just outside of Simmonsville, Virginia. Dark, yes, but rain seems to dog us whenever we visit the Carolinas, from the moment we leave home ’til not long after we return. Still, the region is so beautiful, even bucketfuls cannot truly dampen the spirits of visitors.

Virginia, it must be noted (again), is one of my favourite states in the Union—brimming over with history and beauty, both natural and of the manmade sort. Other than the frustrating dullness of big-box insults blooming there, it’s difficult to find a place in the state I can’t find something to rapture over.

Indecision Time, B&W

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One of these is better for you.

 

Thanks for nothing, Corbusier

Thanks for nothing, Corbusier.

We’d had to sit at a stoplight opposite this thing for far too long. Its inhuman, inhumane ugliness continued imposing itself upon my eyes and mind and soul, looming, seemingly increasingly large, overhead like an executioner or perhaps like a boot stamping on the human face, forever.

Thus my response. Give me ‘frippery’ any day.

Of course, while I blame Corbu, a commentor at Flickr blames Gropius & his Bauhaus, while another blames the folks who approve prison block-like hunks of concrete that don’t weather well, much less welcome actual human beings.

Both fair points. Plenty of blame to go around, I say.

Okay. That was cruel.

How about something lovely?

Wayne County Courthouse

Wayne County Courthouse, Wooster, Ohio. Built 1878.

Please don’t be this person.

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Glenrio is absolutely one of my favourite places along Route 66, particularly the Longhorn Cafe. The famed painted glass panels on the cafe have stood alone for nearly as long as I’ve been alive—but alas, no more:

…many Route 66 enthusiasts still were deeply disappointed to learn Monday four window panes that spelled “CAFE” at the long-abandoned Longhorn Cafe in Glenrio, Texas, recently were stolen.

Nick Gerlich noticed the missing glass during a visit to the Route 66 ghost town along the Texas-New Mexico border.

He said in a Facebook post he saw no evidence of broken glass at the scene, leading him to deduce the panes were carefully removed and pilfered.

There’s a photo of the vandalization at Route 66 News. As Ron notes, it is a small loss in the scheme of the world, particularly considering what we were all thinking about yesterday and the devastation wrought by Harvey and Irma in recent weeks.

At the same time, I wonder if things like this apparent theft in Glenrio, small though they are, sicken us not just because of the loss, that others present and future won’t be able to enjoy what we’ve enjoyed, but because they make so apparent our very much not being ‘basically good’. We are saddened by the vandalism and her sibling, looting, but perhaps we are also, and more deeply, grieved by such a blatant expression of sinfulness and selfishness, whether we recognize it as such or not.

At any rate—please don’t be the sort of person who apparently stole these panes. What are the silly but true cliches—take only pictures (unless you buy something, and by all means, when it comes to souvenirs and tasty food, buy away on the Mother Road, and support those businesses!) and leave only footprints? Let us respect our past and consider the future.

Mink Hollow Covered Bridge in Arney Run Park, Early Autumn

Covered Bridge, Arney Run Park

That may be my longest post title yet, but that’s barely half the name of of this pretty covered bridge—”The Mink Hollow Covered Bridge in Oil Mill Hollow Over Arney Run Near Borcher’s Mill”! That means this bridge has the longest name of any covered bridge in the nation, something I was unaware of when photographing the structure.

Covered Bridge, Arney Run Park

Built by Jacob Brandt in 1887, the bridge is 51 feet long and stands on its original sandstone abutments. Part of one of Fairfield County’s historic parks, crosses Arney Mill Run in Lancaster; the “Oil Mink Hollow” part comes from the days when a flaxseed-pressing mill stood nearby.

Covered Bridge, Arney Run Park: Bent Nail

The Mink Hollow Covered Bridge et cetera, et cetera, et cetera boasts of not just a long name, but also an unusual structure—if I understand correctly, its central X-brace, combined with multiple Kingpost through truss, are unique to the Buckeye State. This is one of eighteen (or sixteen; there seems to be disagreement) covered bridges in Fairfield County—eighteen remaining of the county’s original two hundred and twenty! Indeed, Fairfield County can still boast of having more covered bridges than any other county in Ohio.

There are reports that the bridge is illuminated at night—I may have to go back for that after a really good snow despite the cold. Wouldn’t those make lovely photos?

Covered Bridge, Arney Run Park

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Monday Escape: Dreamscape

Books and Neon?

 

Lots of books.

A neon sign (in turquoise, no less).

An old building.

Is this the fantasy of quite a few of us or what?

And one wonderful bit of news this Monday: My friend April’s cat is home! A kind couple nearly a mile away spotted him in their yard and returned Silver to his home. Thanks for your prayers…and have a fine Monday.

Riverview Florist, Alone

Riverview Florist. Photo copyright Jen Baker/Liberty Images.

Riverview Florist door. Copyright Jen Baker/Liberty Images.

In a now-quiet Ohio Valley steel town—right around the corner from the famously abandoned car dealership—stands a building so grand for its purpose, it’s difficult to believe it was simply a greenhouse and florist. The English Tudor-style building is so very handsome it seems to have been plucked from one of Britain’s verdant fields and plunked in the centre of fields of concrete instead; that it is flanked by massive, overgrown greenhouses made it an even more outstanding sight.

Riverview Florist. Photo copyright Jen Baker/Liberty Images.

Riverview Florist. Copyright Jen Baker/Liberty Images.

This is not the original Riverview florist and greenhouse headquarters (nor the last); that caught fire in 1935. The Tudor edifice in my photographs was designed by East Liverpool architect Robert Beatty, with the admonition he include pieces of the old greenhouse building—specifically, charred beams rescued from the ashes of the original. These Beatty integrated into the French doors leading to the greenhouses. Presumably, there they remain, future success built, as it nearly always is, on the success of the past.

Riverview Florist. Copyright Jen Baker/Liberty Images.

Riverview Florist. Copyright Jen Baker/Liberty Images.

You’re probably thinking this enterprise must have been at least a little successful for such an impressive structure to serve a florist & greenhouse during the Great Depression, and you’re right. It’s such a marvellous story, too!

Riverview Florist. Copyright Jen Baker/Liberty Images.

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Monday Escape: America in Autumn

America in Autumn

Timing is everything, as we all know. Zipping down one of Ohio’s many country roads, I spotted this “Frank” doing its work in the fields. There wasn’t even time to hop out of the car—but I’m still very happy with this shot! A fine stroke of luck. All the shot is missing is a kindly-looking middle-aged farmer, proudly surveying the activity on his farm (he’s probably the fellow driving the harvester).America in Autumn

Also, random internet user tip….Have you been glaring angrily at your computer due to its not performing correctly? As in, you’re unable to post to Flickr, your blog, or even see letters on webpages?

Reinstall the browser. You’ll save yourself two full days of frustration and re-booting your computer thinking it is the one responsible for your problems.

*blush*

Have a beautiful Monday, all!