Monday, February 28, 2011
This one was from 1953, when I was 7 years old, and traveling with my folks in Florida. I wasn't very articulate, but oh, the memories!
Next, another one from Miami, this time in 1956 when I was 10. I was a creature of very few words, but I still had a big interest in lodging places. The iconic Eden Roc Hotel had opened just a few weeks before we arrived in Miami Beach, so we got to take a tour.
Skip to 1960, on one of my many trips with a dad who had an obsession with history, particularly the Civil War. We visited tons of battlefields over the years, but I'm pretty sure I was more intrigued by the swimming and miniature golf!
I have remarked in the past that the best times of my life were spent on the road. I just wish Sue had found a few postcards from our many Route 66 trips. She indicated that she has some more, so we'll see. I can't believe she saved all these. You're not a hoarder, are you, Sue? Ha ha!
Now for a very cool mystery. Yesterday at Afton Station Ron M. was leafing through his latest issue of Shutterbug Magazine when I heard him utter "Omigod!" Why? Because this is what he found there:The image was in the magazine's "Creativity" section, where anyone can submit a photo based on the theme of the month. The theme for this issue was Reflections and yes, that's Afton Station's gas pump, DeSoto, and the building across the street reflected in our front window. We have no idea who the photographer, Richard Kinler, is. I've tried to find him online and on Facebook, but with no results. I want to compliment on his photo and see if I can get some copies. I'd love to have it made into a postcard too, with his permission. If anyone has any bright ideas, let me know.
Sunday, February 27, 2011
The third visitor was a solo gentleman from Grove who was looking to sell at '53 Packard. And that ended the very short parade of visitors for the day.
However, Phil and Robin came to visit, and shortly thereafter Betty arrived with a big box. It was a birthday cake for me! What a surprise! Let the party begin! Ron M. brought poppers, those little bottles that explode when you pull the string, and there were even a couple of nice presents for me. Once again I was embarrassed. I always feel silly when people honor me in this way. Silly, but also kind of thrilled! Have a look at this nice cake. Betty knows I like white cake with tons of white icing, so this one was just perfect. Thank you, folks!
After the cake, Betty taught us how to flamenco dance. (Actually, I'm not sure what she's doing here, but she looks pretty while doing it!) See you tomorrow!
Saturday, February 26, 2011
A dad from Grove, OK stopped in with this three little boys. Here are two of them looking over some of Betty B's nice hand made merchandise.Ron M. and Tattoo Man were with me most of the day, and Robin and Phil stopped by, too. So did Mike Pendleton from Kansas. It felt like the Station was coming out of hibernation, finally. We'll be back tomorrow and, although it's supposed to storm, we're hoping for another visitor-filled day. See you then!
Oh, I almost forgot! Here's a little tease. Something BIG (and yet also small) and HOT (although also very cold) is coming to Afton Station!!! It's something Afton, and Afton Station, has needed for a long time to further serve the travelers who stop by. That's all I'm going to say until it's a 100% done deal. Meanwhile, just think "Shiver Shack".
Friday, February 25, 2011
I had a bit of a disappointment yesterday involving the town of Afton. I'd rather not go into it here, but I felt the sting of something I think was extremely unfair. Maybe I'm just sensitive. I still feel affection for the town and hope that some day someone will come along with the incentive and funds to buy a few of the historic buildings along Route 66 and restore them, and I continue to do my best to "sell" the town to just about every traveler who comes my way. Apparently, the town doesn't care if I feel this way.
Ok, I'm finished grumping. I apologize.
Thursday, February 24, 2011
My birthday dinner will be on Route 66, at El Rancho Grande. . . if I ever feel like eating again!
Monday, February 21, 2011
You may recall that last year (see posts from Aug. 19 & Sept. 18) I was given some bricks from old Route 66 in Vinita. They had been unearthed when the city tore up the road in order to find a water leak at the main intersection of town. It was interesting to find that the original Route 66 in that city was indeed paved in brick. Now, according to "Pushin' Up Daisies", something else of interest was found. The photo below is most likely that of a Silent Policeman, installed in the road as a means of regulating traffic when automobiles were just beginning to overtake horses as the main means of transportation.
"Some forms of Silent Policemen were placed in the center of an intersection, their base of cast iron, bolted down to the ground. The idea was to get drivers who intended to turn, to pass and go around the sign and not cut corners. Rubberized or other flexible pieces often stood up from the cast iron base so that a poor driver who happened to run into the Silent Policeman would not be seriously injured."
The Silent Policeman found in Vinita is now on display at the Eastern Trails Museum in that city.
I found this image of another form of Silent Policeman on line. Running over either of these would surely quickly wake up anyone asleep in the car!
Sunday, February 20, 2011
Saturday, February 19, 2011
Tattoo eating fruit. Betty and Ron M. looking on in amazement
For most of the morning, we weren't sure how the day would go. All the "regulars" were there today -- Ron M., Marly, Betty W., Robin, Phil, David, Mike Pendleton, Patrick, and Tattoo -- so we were having a great time catching up, but actual travelers were few and far between during the morning hours.
But around noon, another big surprise! People started pouring in the door! And by the end of the day we greeted 18 visitors! They came from near and far, but mostly near, as to be expected in the off-season -- mostly people out for little day trips in the lovely, sunny springlike weather. But several folks were actually on longer Route 66 trips. They came from Cherokee KS, Manitoba Canada, Tulsa OK, Vinita OK, Stanton MI, Shawnee KS, and Humboldt, KS.
One of the couples from Vinita arrived in this beautifully restored hot rod.
Marly spent most of the day back in the new showroom building. He's putting some finishing touches on the electrical work before the insulation people come in next week. David seems to think we can start moving cars in within a month. I'm still lobbying for some nice flat walls so I can hang the many posters and photos I've accumulated. I'll also need an area of shelves for accumulated memorabilia. There's still a lot to be done, but I can hope.It was such a great day today. I'm psyched and ready to start a new season at the Station. I know it will be a great one. I'll be in Afton again tomorrow, so come on down!
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Other than it being a stunningly gorgeous day, the trip wasn't as exciting as I'd anticipated. We really didn't get to see anything new and different on Route 66, I guess because we spent quite a bit of time at the Interpretive Center having a nice visit with Marilyn Emde, the Executive Director of the OK Route 66 Association, and exploring the building. The exhibit I made for them was very well received, and as soon as it's hung I'll post a photo here.
We made a couple of quick stops. One was at the Shoe Tree near Stroud - the NEW Shoe Tree, that is. As you will remember, the old Shoe Tree fell over last fall. People almost immediately started to add shoes to a newer, bigger, stronger tree right behind the original. We were happy to see that the new tree is quickly filling up with footwear. I wish I'd brought some of mine to add to the fun!
Ron M. and I decided that the current trend in sprucing up old motels is a yellow and green color scheme. Here's the Lincoln Motel in Chandler, still open as a motel, and recently repainted in that color scheme, with some red tossed in.
Down the road in Stroud, this former tourist court fell victim to another recent repaint.
Finally, we took a quick drive down the road to Seaba Station in Warwick, to check out the new motorcycle museum that now occupies the old D-X Station that once housed an antique shop. It was then that I participated in an activity that drives me absolutely nuts when it happens to me at Afton Station -- we did a drive-by shooting! Yep, instead of going in, I shot this photo of the building while on the run. I still feel guilty, but we were actually pressed for time so that's our feeble excuse. I haven't been in the building since it changed owners, but one of these days I'll drive over there and correct that.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Sunday, February 13, 2011
On the way back toward Tulsa, we drove to Pryor, a nice bustling little town not on Route 66, and Inola, another cute town with a restaurant we've been wanting to visit. It's a tiny little building right next to the railroad track, and according to the folks at the Discover Oklahoma TV show, the older lady who owns it makes some very fine food. It was closed today, but we'll be back. Eventually, we found ourselves back in Tulsa, but I for one felt very refreshed and delighted to watch the snow disappearing before my very eyes.
Saturday, February 12, 2011
And finally, it wasn't the weather that year which was causing closings and prohibiting gatherings. It was a outbreak of smallpox and influenza. Even with all the closings, a few managed to celebrate Valentine's Day. . .
"Citizens are asked to respect the No Spitting on the Sidewalk" ordinance. Violators will be fined $5, or alternately will spend 5 days in jail, one for each $1 worth of fine."
Aww, they'll just spit on the floor of the jail!
Life goes on in a small town destined to become much larger and busier in just a few years, thanks to Route 66.
Some who know my liberal political leanings would question whether I am sincere in my professed love of life in a red state. Yes, I am. But I'm also not saying that everything is bad back East. I have some wonderful friends back there, and life was good. It was just different. Just as an example: In Oklahoma when one confronts a four-way stop, it can be a problem. Why? It's NOT because everyone is competing to be first through the intersection as often happens in New York, but instead because folks wait politely for everyone else to go first, meaning it can take a while before someone finally gives up and proceeds sheepishly. In Oklahoma, if I hear one horn honking a week, that would be a lot. People just don't honk at one another here except as a last resort.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
By not going to Afton, what I'm losing in revenue I'm making up for in less gasoline usage. I'm trying to look on the bright side.
More later, perhaps.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Perhaps you can enlarge them yourselves. They're pretty cool -- two Texacos, a Mobligas, a Phillips, and a Cities Service. Have fun. I have to go sweep the snow off of my porch.