Thursday, September 2, 2010

The trip home (and sunrises)

I document most of the sunrises we see when traveling. Unfortunately, both of our travel days coming home dawned a bit cloudy and overcast so the sunrises weren't very spectacular.

We described this one as the "Sun Break-Through" which occurred "somewhere over Iowa" about 8:30 a.m. when the clouds finally started breaking up. It really was pretty - just not as bright and colorful as a normal sunrise.

Again, the second day, the sky was quite overcast which makes for easy driving when you're heading East. By the time the clouds broke and we really had glare from the sun, it was high enough in the sky to not be so blinding to the driver.

This shot was taken somewhere near Toledo.

Believe it or not, we found yet another casino on the way home!! Actually, we really didn't know about this one. As we approached the Ohio/Pennsylvania line we discussed possible side trips. We consulted Samantha, our GPS traveling companion. (Yes, our GPS has a name and personality! Doesn't yours?) She suggested the Mountaineer Casino in Newell, WV.

She then guided us through this winding route that took us from the Pennsylvania Turnpike onto some tiny little country roads that carried us through the towns of Industry and Shippingport in PA and eased us back through a tiny corner of Ohio right to the Old Newell Bridge. (It looks a lot bigger, and newer, in this pic!) At the end of the bridge you make a sharp right and drive through some of the most beautiful countryside around, then through the tiny town of Newell and brings you, suddenly, to a large, beautiful modern casino, resort and conference center.

(Yes, I DID paint that shirt The Big Guy is wearing.)

We spent a few hours here and enjoyed a tasty dinner before heading out on the road again. This would make a great weekend destination for us sometime. The area is absolutely beautiful and the surrounding town had oodles of interesting looking shops featuring antiques, collectibles and gift items in their windows. In addition to many enticing looking restaurants in town, the casino features something like 5 restaurants on the premises, a salon and spa and an indoor pool, as well as a showroom. Oh, and there is a factory outlet for Fiestaware in this town, too!

We made a point of leaving before dark as we knew those country roads might be challenging after the sun went down. We really wanted to be back on a highway by then.

Along the way we came across a few new sights for us. We had never seen portable traffic lights but they had them on this little country road where they wanted traffic to form alternating single lanes around construction. This one was in the area of Raccoon Creek State Park (I just loved that name! I also loved the names of some of the roads in the area, like "Potato Garden Run".) Of course, we live in an area where they'd probably try to steal the portable lights so maybe that's why we've never come across them before!

My camera was still processing that shot when The Big Guy burst into laughter over a sign by the side of the road. Handpainted on a piece of plywood and tied against a pole, it advertised "Far Wood For Sale" and gave a phone number. I guess this guy really does "write like he talks." He refused to go back to let me take a picture of it!

That wasn't the last weird sign we saw! On our way toward Pittsburgh and the Turnpike, we saw this sign directing us to the correct exit to get to the Moon !

Speaking of signs, two of the cuter ones I saw on the way out were one on a collision repair center in Western PA that claimed "We're always happy to meet you by accident!" and featured a little cartoony car that was quite smashed up. A big sign on a restaurant (I think in Indiana) advertised "Breakfast, lunch, dinner or anything else we can cater!"

Oh yeah, I almost forgot the sign on a donut shop in Davenport, Iowa that claims "Diets are overrated!"

Don't you just agree with that last one?!?

No comments: