Mailboxes and Fences

When on the way home from an early Saturday morning meeting, I could not help myself.  I had to pull over.

Just a few minutes drive from my home, this Southwest Virginia view is enhanced by old mailboxes and fencelines.

I’m slowly, ever so slowly catching up.  Be back soon!

The Perfect Recipe

The photos and stories from my trip to Atlanta are not quite ready for prime time posting, but the photos from an incredible day on the motorcycle are.  It was the perfect recipe for a day ride: great weather, good roads, and wonderful friends.

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This past Sunday I rode a little over 200 miles through the back roads of Virginia and North Carolina with three of my favs.

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We also spent some time on the Blue Ridge Parkway (BRP) which offers wide sweeping curves and great views.  The BRP which is America’s longest linear park, runs for 469 miles (755 km) through 29 Virginia and North Carolina counties, mostly along the Blue Ridge, a major mountain chain that is part of the Appalachian Mountains.

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The BRP celebrated it’s 75th Anniversary in 2010 and while I do not know for sure, I believe these stone walls have been around since the parkway was constructed.

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 You may remember that I celebrated my 50th birthday that same year with a solo ride on the BRP, the first of several solo rides.

 5 Days / 3 States / 925 Miles.

You can see photos from that incredible trip here and here.

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Despite the various stops along the way, which offer the chance to bring out the camera, it is the riding that makes the day so great.  The bike and I rolled smoothly over the miles, and we flowed through the curves with ease.  I was completely content.

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Seriously, wouldn’t you be?

Around Radford

Saturday dawned with a list of errands that needed running, and despite the expectation of rain, I decided to ride the bike.  It should surprise no one that I also made sure to find time to shoot some of the local scene.

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I wish I could give you a little back story about this courtyard and the wall that surrounds it, but I have no history.  The plan is to go to Facebook and see if some of the Radford locals can help me out.  Many is the time that I have tried to capture a photo to reflect the wall’s uniqueness, and many times I have deleted those images.  Not today!

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It was quite overcast, but clouds always make for intriguing images.

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The post processing here reflects the historic trestle over the New River, and a monochrome image will be posted on Monochromia sometime in the next few weeks.

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In order to get these images, I had to stop the bike and walk over the bridge.  Thankfully, this fencing only briefly obscures the view.

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Some friends have purchased, and while still running the business, are renovating this 50 yr old Pizza House.

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A quick stop at a friend’s home yielded these Rhododendron images.  Such a gorgeous bud and bloom!

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Every item on the To Do List was checked off, and I enjoyed a cool, slightly drizzly ride.

Satisfaction indeed!

Walking By History

During that same morning walk last Sunday, where I saw a few signs of spring, I also saw signs of history.

Signs that cause a distinct sense of sadness and pain,

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others that show the effect of time and weather,

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and some that showcase pride.

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I’ve passed by these markers hundreds, if not thousands of times, mostly on the bike or in the truck.

Walking though, offers time for reflection and commemoration.

Rockwood Manor

Every December, some friends of mine and I host a fundraiser to benefit local charities, and this year we held the event at Rockwood Manor.

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Built in 1876, the home, now turned Bed and Breakfast, is simply stunning.  I’d loved to have spent hours taking photos, but as I was working the fundraiser, I didn’t have as much time as I’d have liked.

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The history section of the website notes that “the home was designed by architect Burkholder and built by contractor Pettijohn, who were both from Lynchburg, Va.  Oversized brick with decorative slag were made on-site.  The house boasts sixty-five extra-large windows, some with Jefferson-style openings that rise into the twelve-foot ceiling;  seventeen fireplaces on five chimneys; ornate plaster work; and medallions.  Outside over the windows is wrought iron on a tin metal box framework”

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The perfect porch for sitting and sipping.

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Parquet floors, made of alternating walnut and ash, add even more warmth and beauty.

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The floating staircase

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The Dining Room

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The ceiling of the Sitting Room

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Glasses waiting to be filled

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Perhaps an old smoke house?  I wish I’d had time to find out!

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One of many historic items to be seen on the property.

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Hopefully I can return at some point and learn more about the history of this treasured home.

Thank goodness the family knew it’s value and sought to restore rather than sell.

 

A New Milestone

It’s been two weeks since I’ve posted!  Where did the time go?  🙂

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Thankfully, in between closing down the old practice, opening the new, and campaigning for Delegate, I was still able to find a few moments with the camera.

This first photo is from Carson’s Courtyard, a little resting spot in downtown Radford, created with Community Development Block Grants.

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On another day, I stopped by the American Legion Building.  Built in 1928, the building has served as a temporary courthouse, Catholic church, daycare center, Radford Arsenal hiring office, dance hall, voter registration office, polling place, and home to Main Street Radford.  The American Legion members have started a restoration drive to raise funds for this historic building.

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On July 4th, I rode the motorcycle to visit a few of the communities in the 12th District.

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One of three covered bridges in Giles County, the Sinking Creek Covered Bridge was built in 1916.

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This next one was taken with my new Samsung Galaxy.  Those of you who know me well, will realize that I have changed phones after 15 years as a Blackberry user.  Not sure it was a good move yet …

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The Newport Parade

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was followed by the Blacksburg Parade,

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and then it was back home to the City of Radford for music and fireworks.

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A few days later, the campaign office was buzzing with the sound of volunteers and staffers working the phone bank.

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So thankfully, despite the pace of life, I’m still finding moments to pull the bike over and enjoy the view.

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