Day 31: Home and catching up – part I

Alrighty then. Getting back to our usual routine here.  The dogs were happy to run and swim in their regular “backyard” (Prospect Park).  A dreary grey day here in NYC which feels more like fall.  But since it’s Monday, there’s tons of weekend garbage leftover from the mobs on the weekend indicating, yes, it’s still summer.  Grip ate half of a submarine sandwich I think.  The other dogs ate stuff as well that I couldn’t get to in time to identify.

But back to Ohio.  Yes, last true day of shooting and there were hundreds of miles between stuff.  Although there wasn’t much for the website, I got a lot for the blog.   I think I was just happy to be using the camera outside in the sun again.  And sad that it’ll be awhile til we’re back out on the road again. 

From Chillicothe, OH:

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Road snacks from the Crispie Creme Donut Shop in Chillicothe — “since 1929″.  I saw another store with the same name in Portsmouth later.  So I’m not sure how many there were or if it was just these two.  Orange cake donut with orange frosting and, on the right, cinnamon-filled donut on the right (with chocolate and peanuts on top).  Both great.

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A reworked bulb & neon sign in Portsmouth — better than taking it down:

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and far cheerier than what they did to the Smith’s Drug Store sign downtown.  Why they painted it over, I don’t know.  The store is still there and open.

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A nice streamline / art deco style building with vitrolite tiles and details.  Also in Portsmouth:

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In Ironton, a nice former gas station with well-preserved Kelly Tires sign.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen an embossed Kelly sign before.  I love the station’s metal canopy.  The paint job makes for a nice study in blue and white with the beautiful sky & clouds.

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Surely this sign in Ironton had neon originally — but it still looks pretty like this:

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Another one from Ironton.  This corner wraparound neon signs must have been pretty rare — or at least very few survive now.  I can’t think of any others off the top of my head.

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During my research session yesterday, I came across lots of ads for these big red plastic letters.  So, for sure, they were big in the late 1950s, early1960s.  And I couldn’t resist photo-ing this store in Gallipolis with the mint condition old car in front.

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This ice cream stand is in Gallopolis.  What I like, besides the blue and white sign / blue and white weather, is the integration of the sign and table/stools.  Sparkle was allowed into the photo since she’s also white.  And, no, I did NOT sample the strawberry shortcake — but I was tempted!

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We were hugging the river that runs between Ohio and Kentucky — and later between Ohio and West Virginia — all day so there were a lot of signs, restaurants, etc. with river themes.  And the dogs got a lot of last summer dips in.  This cool paddlewheeler (is that what you call them?) model / sign was in Gallipolis:

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In Jackson, the Lazy Dog Camp Resort had several of these nicely done handpainted signs:

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A double-sided handmade sign — this was in or near Coal Run.  While some people might criticize the quality of the artwork, okay so the proportions are a little off, I find it all the more endearing.  Sure beats a plain text plastic box sign!

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So while I was photo-ing a giant elephant statue in Beverly and asking around what his story was, someone mentioned that he might have come from the buffalo farm that has those Indian statues.  Say WHAT?  So I had to go check it out.  I got some vague directions, got a little lost, got a little less vaguer directions and found it.  Dixon’s Elk Run Buffalo Farm.  The Indian statues turned out to be nothing special — less than life-size and plaster and all but one had been toppled.  Vandals, weather, time?  There was another elephant statue there, in the distance, partially submerged in a pond and grass — so I couldn’t really tell if it was related to the one in town.  But while I was busy looking at statues, the dogs were busy losing their minds over these furry beasts.  Believe me, I was extra careful opening and closing the van door so as to prevent anyone escaping.  They’d have been goners if they’d gotten in kicking or head-butting range.  A big male was already giving me Death Eye through the fence.  This one with misshapen horns seemed rather curious about me and the bouncing, noisy van.  On the way out of town, I passed a store with a fiberglass buffalo statue with a sign advertising “Dixon’s Buffalo Meat”.  Made me very sad.

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Marietta was the last stop for the day — and the last photo for today.  This was in Marietta.  I’ve seen those extended Cadillacs and Hummers — but I don’t think I’ve seen an extended mini van before.  And certainly never one with a cow paint scheme.

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Still one more brief post to come — have to go do some errands & make some phone calls.  Post-vacation necessities ya know.  So the final blog post might have to wait until tomorrow morning since I’m back at work tonight.

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6 Responses to “Day 31: Home and catching up – part I”

  1. wow. this was a favorite post of your blog. donut / food, the buffalo, incredible signage and animal shapes. thanks so much for yet another trip where i really feel like i had the chance to follow along gratuitously.

    see you tonight!

    • I still have one more post to go — but it’ll have to be tomorrow morning. I’m not even going to even get all my mail opened before work tonight. Shoulda called in sick.

  2. welcome back! that Buffalo is a trip!

  3. I love the old variety store with the car. Maybe a 59 Oldsmobile? It looks like a vintage postcard! And G.C. Murphy in Mt. Prospect Illinois was my home away from home in 1961-1963. It was in a moderne strip mall and had those exact same red letters.

    Glad you made it home okay, and this time I was totally not worried about you on that last day. My husband and my co-workers in California and my mom in Chicago were glad, too! We all follow along on your trips, and the guys all have to hear me go “Gosh, I hope Debra Jane is okay out there, 1200 miles in a snowstorm” a few times during the last day.

    You’re kind of a legend amongst me and my real-life friends and family.

    • I have a new appreciation for those clunky plastic letters now after seeing those ads for them as the newest thing. They’re also very marquee-like (message boards). I don’t think I’d ever paid much attention to them before.

      Gosh, I’m flattered to have followers. Yeah, that Colorado leg las year was horrible. This one much shorter and safer but boring enough. I’m going to try to include more “on the way home” pitstops on my trips like I did this time (Harrisburg) just to break up the tedium.

      See you on the Southern Spring trip! (or sooner)

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