Push Hard

I am drawn to specific things – doors, old churches, vintage signs, weird architectural details, and informal signs.

This one made me laugh.

You’ll find it in downtown Douglas, Wyoming. You can read more about Douglas if you’re interested.

First there was the cool exhibit of Vintage trains.

Douglas looks like a modern Wild West town and I really liked it there.

And then there was the most unique church I’ve ever seen.

Not to mention the rainbow we saw after failing to climb the mountain.

And more about that trip.

Half the fun of traveling is reminiscing about the place we’ve been!

Street Art

There’s an amazing alley in Rapid City, South Dakota where graffiti artists can legally leave their mark.

It’s a brilliant method to tamping down on graffiti around the city and one of those most surreal places I’ve seen.

There were several pieces that caught my eye. Here’s just one.

Incidentally, I don’t recall reading about this in any brochures. We found it because we parked the car and walked around. When you visit a new place, get out and explore. You never know what you’ll find!

People Watching

Sometimes I wish that it was socially acceptable to just walk up to a stranger and ask what their story is. “Hello sir. You look like an interesting human being and we’re stuck in this airport for a while. Would you mind telling me where you’re from and a little about your life philosophy?”

Since I wasn’t brave enough to do that, I’ll have to settle for making up my own tale. But really, friends – doesn’t he look like he’s been on some adventures?

Anyone Else?

Anyone else geek out when they see a vintage car on the street? I was visiting a museum on this Winchester, Virginia street when I spotted this car. There was an Australian with a giant camera photographing it as well and we agreed that it was a real gem even though the car needs some work.

I hope that I will always stop and admire vintage cars as they travel through a world that increasingly values the new over the old, the trendy over the classics, and the perfect over the quaintly flawed.

Remembering Vada

The lady pictured above is my neighbor – Vada – my grandmother’s lifelong friend and the kindest person I have ever known.

We will gather today to honor Vada and lay her to rest next to her husband and only child.

She was a grandmotherly lady known for her cooking and kindness. She was famous for her homemade noodles and kept a deep freeze stocked with delicious pies, always ready for the next church dinner or a death in the community.

Vada was one of the last of my grandparents’ generation – a simple country lady who kept a garden, preserved food, quilted, hung out her clothes on the line, and whose home didn’t change in decades.

She was of a generation that had survived so many wars, depressions and recessions that they knew better than to waste anything and were always prepared for trouble. A threat like COVID-19 wouldn’t be a concern to Vada at all because she was always stocked and ready.

Vada was a church lady who loved the Lord. She also loved her pets and was known for feeding strays. She couldn’t stand to see anyone or anything go hungry.

Christmas meant tins of her homemade candies filled to the brim with things like buckeyes, fudge and caramel corn. She loved my homemade sugar cookies so I always made sure she had a supply for Christmas.

She didn’t want her picture taken the day I made the above image. That was several years ago but I remember her saying with a smile and laugh “Oh, Brandi! I didn’t know you would be taking pictures! You don’t want my picture, do you?”

I assured her I did want her picture and snapped a few while she worked her magic in the kitchen.

This moment in time with the blurry hand and the sweet smile is how I want to remember our Vada. This is why we make pictures – so that even when our memories fade, they will never really go away.

Embrace A Black Cat

It’s Friday the 13th! Are you superstitious?

Since black cats are often a symbol of bad luck, I want to take a minute to advocate for them. Not only is my little Scout not bad luck, I consider him my lucky charm.

I wonder sometimes what might have happened to him given how cruel people can be to black animals. Black animals are often the last to be adopted in shelters and at higher risk of abuse.

If you have a chance to adopt a black kitty, I hope you’ll do it. All animals deserve a good life.

Details

Details are important to me. Things that have interesting shapes and colors are pleasing to the eye and often provoke thought or allow the imagination to run wild.

Here are some details from the 1950s exhibit last week.

Look at those colors! The shapes! The Atomic style is just a lot of fun!

Given how much advertising I see on a daily basis, it’s surprising this increase isn’t more substantial. Although this was from eight years ago so it certainly is drastically more today.

From the front end of a 1957 Chevy Bellaire.

Check out that unusual rusty color. And the headlights! Oh my!

I’ve never quite understood the purpose of a mirror on a cigarette machine but it’s a great place for yours truly to get a selfie. Really- is it so you can see how cool you look with your pack of smokes? Maybe it’s so you can see who is coming up behind you, especially important for spies and for anyone trying to keep tabs on a potential mate in a crowd!

And finally, I never walk past a radio without taking a picture. This one sits atop the fridge in the Lustron kitchen.

What details do you enjoy? Or maybe you’re a big picture kind of person? Tell me!