Tuesday, September 4, 2012

OTBR: A Wheat Field in the UK

Latitude: N 52° 18.702
Longitude: E 000° 19.710
A child on a road trip with his family asks, "Where are we?" and the father answers, "Let's check the map. We're off the blue roads [the Interstate Highways marked in blue on the road atlas]. We're off the red roads [the US and state highways]. We're off the black roads [the county highways]. I think we're off the map altogether." It was always my dream to be off the map altogether.

After the jump, a few of the random places (and I mean random literally) that I visited vicariously last month that are "off the blue roads".

  • in a wheat field off a green lane in the UK, reached by new bicycle on a sunny day
  • in Minnesota, just off the Soo Line Trail, a recreational vehicle trail on the roadbed of an railroad
  • among wild strawberries and raspberries along a small forest trail in Estonia
  • in Maine, about 400 meters off of a wide dirt road into birch and pine forest
  • in Pennsylvania's Hickory Run State Park, across open patches and along deer trails and a few minutes walk through heavy mountain laurel
  • in the UK, just off the Aire and Calder Navigation, a waterway used to carry freight and other goods before the railways came into being
  • just off the bow of the tarp-covered boat in the driveway of a very quaint red-brick ranch home southwest of Chicago
  • on the road to California's Lick Observatory, on a dry, grassy hill overlooking much of the Santa Clara valley, aka Silicon Valley
  • south of Red Mountain, California, in slightly uneven desert with the usual scrubby brush, with evidence of mining all around
  • near an abandoned church on a narrow gravel road in Virginia's dense woodland
  • inside either the Bohemian Cafe, an Omaha landmark, or the Prague Hotel, a nicely remodeled old building in Omaha, Nebraska
  • in a cornfield in Ohio, just south of an Amish or Mennonite barn
  • in a hay field in southwestern Wisconsin's rolling farmland ("The crops don't look too bad, but the drought isn't as bad here as farther south.")
  • in the back of the Kellogg's plant in Muncy Pennsylvania
  • out of reach (to Australians, at least) in a vineyard in New Zealand
  • behind a mechanized gate (open, thanks) of a million dollar estate north of Bend, Oregon
  • near Villesse, Italy, near a big storage building, a mighty IKEA store and a miniature aeroplane center, with a few planes circling and rolling in the air
  • in grassland off I-25 in Colorado Springs ("Look west you get a good look at the Air Force Academy set against Rampart Range.")
  • and on runway 34R on Washington State's Paine Field Snohomish County Airport ("Paine Field is where Boeing builds 787s in a building that is one of the largest buildings in the world.")

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