Monday Escape: Not giving up on autumn just yet

Autumn In Ohio

Surely your correspondent is hardly alone in being distressed by the way autumn and Thanksgiving are trampled in the Christmas creep/rush. Fall is the favourite season of many, yet it seems we’re expected to ignore it in the name of Christmas busy-ness.

Isn’t that a shame? And I’m a summer woman, through and through!

Sunlight

I know today is December first, and thus really and truly the start of winter, but let’s take a few final moments to enjoy autumn: the rich fragrances, the sight of falling leaves and the delightful crunch of them underfoot, copious amounts of sunshine combined with an awakening nip in the air, the last glorious riot of colour meant to tide us through the dark, grey stretch of winter now shouldering its way in. Shall we?

Woodruff

Bewilderment Wednesday

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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!

Columbus’ T&OC, the Toledo and Ohio Central Railroad Station

Toledo & Ohio Central RR Station As part of my continuing effort to photograph Columbus’ architecturally significant buildings, abandoned or otherwise, I today offer you the very handsome Toledo & Ohio Central railroad station, or the T&OC, as it is called by natives. This marvellous place stands on Broad downtown—surely no one could drive by the first time without at least wanting to stop and take a closer look! This is the only remaining Columbus station, the last jewel in a crown that once held three. Toledo & Ohio Central Railroad Station, Columbus Designed by the well-regarded Columbus architecture firm of Yost & Packard (some of their buildings here), the T&OC was built in 1895 for the Toledo & Ohio Railroad. Though I know you are thinking “Asian design!” just as I did, the architects stated that it is actually based upon French and Swiss feudal architecture. Lantern Love at the Toledo & Ohio Central rail station Continue reading

How about a brief, 50mm garden tour?

Pollinator Garden

Yes, my little bug bath is crooked—the lampstand from which I built it is a bit wobblier than expected!

I’d something else planned, but who does not like a garden tour, even one vicariously taken? This post will also semi-explain last Friday’s semi-defection (I didn’t realize it was also the 13th until evening, and then, really, everything made sense). After working very hard in the garden beds Saturday, I headed out with my nifty fifty for some photographs. I was, it must be confessed, simply too tired (lazy?) to head back indoors for a wider-angle lens, for which I half-apologize, but I think the photographs turned out nicely regardless.

Garden Tour: "Pesto Perpetuo" Basil

“Pesto Perpetuo” Basil—the spear-shaped leaves are so lovely.

As you know, I do love gardening, and this includes veggie & fruit gardening so we have additional healthy food to eat and put up for ourselves and others. Of course, this means working alongside nature, and nature is not always very nice. In this case, a few weeks after planting the heirloom seedlings I’ve been raising since seedhood, I wandered out to give everyone a drink only to learn that during the dark of night, something had slithered through the beds and eaten the top right off every single seedling!

*sigh* No doubt fellow gardeners can understand my upset. Hubby took it a little better, saying we’d head to our local nursery to pick up replacements (it’s too late to re-start most of the lost plants from seed), and that’s exactly what we did!

Of course, heading to the nursery is (for me) sort of like sending a child to a candy store. Continue reading

“The World’s Greatest Air Harbor”: Old Port Columbus Airport

Old Port Columbus Air Terminal & Control Tower Recently the Columbus Landmarks Foundation released their list of the most endangered historic properties in the central Ohio area for 2014. One of my goals is to visit as many of these places as is possible and photograph them as they stand today, so long as they are able to be visited and viewed.

At the very top of this year’s list is the Old Port Columbus Airport terminal on the east side. Opened in 1929, it’s a rather attractive Art Deco building, one hailed as “The World’s Greatest Air Harbor” by the city officials who had spent nearly a decade lobbying for it. None other than Charles Lindbergh himself selected the site for the airport, which also—this is fascinating to me—served as a train terminal for the Transcontinental Air Transport New York to Los Angeles air-rail system.

Old Port Columbus

The “street-side” of the building—this is one of the first things seen by rail passengers entering Port Columbus.

It sounds as if travelling such a distance was a bit convoluted back in ’29: For a $351.94 ticket, you’d go from New York to Columbus via the Pennsylvania Railroad, from Columbus to Waynoka, Oklahoma via air, then back onto a train to head to Clovis, New Mexico, and a final leg in the air from Clovis to LA. I’d probably handcuff my luggage to myself lest it be lost! All of that train- and plane-hopping over the course of the required 48 hours sounds exhausting, but of course it was a much different time—travel was a luxurious pleasure and event back then.

(I’ll pause so we can all lean back and fantasize about romantic railcar trips and airplane stewardesses serving cocktails. Ahhhh…) Continue reading

(Mostly) Wordless Wednesday

Night Bridge

Veterans Memorial Bridge, b. 1979-1990
(why in the world did it TAKE so long?)
Steubenville, Ohio

Yes, yes, this is a bit of a cop-out, but I’m working on the Memorial Day project I shot Monday night (having been rained out several times) as well as another exciting thing I’ll be unable to resist sharing with you when it is wrapped up. In the meantime, enjoy this pair of Ohio bridges!

Inside Cox Bridge

Cox Bridge, b. 1884
Vinton County, Ohio