Wednesday, June 6, 2012

OTBR: Spring Flowers in Estonia

Latitude: N 58° 23.346
Longitude: E 022° 51.132

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 Estonia, in sparse brush near a village named Jursi, with little white flowers blooming everywhere and mushrooms growing on trees and on the ground
  • on top of a mountain in southern California with a steep road with really tight turns with named driveways branching off here and there leading to large homes, ranches almost
  • in the shadow of Wales' Pen Cerrig Calch ("one of my fave mountains in the Black Mountains, Brecon Beacons National Park. We watched the farmer's sheepdog rounding up sheep here, not for the first time.")
  • in southeast Oregon, along a poor dirt road off the main gravel road leading to Serrano Spring and an historic homestead ("As I pulled up an antelope bounded away through the sagebrush.")
  • in Victoria, Australia, behind a large eucalyptus tree with multiple trunks or several trees which had fused together
  • beside a brick front McMansion in an upscale DC suburb ("A blue sign on their mail box indicated 'Dog contained by Invisible Fence.'")
  • near New South Wales's Randwick Race Course, near a block of red-brick flats named "Phar Lap" after Australia's most famous racehorse
  • very near the basketball goal beside the driveway of a house in Virginia ("I don’t know that I could have dunked it from there, but it would be difficult to miss the shot.")
  • by a 10 foot brick wall surrounding a golf course in Colorado
  • in rural Missouri, in a plowed field along a dirt road off old highway 21, which, before it was replaced by new highway 21, had so many accidents it was nicknamed "Blood Alley"
  • under heavy tree cover in Connecticut's Mattatuck State Forest
  • in a newly planted cornfield in a suspended suburban development several miles from, but still within sight of, the Nebraska state capitol's tall spire.
  • unreachable on the infield of the Tucson International Airport near the intersection of taxiways A8 and C
  • between two parked semi trailers in a truck yard on the north side of a 150x170 m warehouse in Minnesota
  • in Victoria, Australia, nestled in some blackberry bushes between a small vacant factory and the railway line
  • in California, 110 meters from the road, but reachable from the Pacific Crest Trail which crosses the street and loops behind the private property along the street
  • in the Czech forest known as "Czech Canada," about 100 m from a newly built hide for hunters
  • in a freshly planted corn field in Iowa, in an area of very green, rolling hills, tree-lined creeks, and wildflowers blooming in abundance
  • in New South Wales, near a full dam in sheep grazing area with beautiful rolling hills covered by green grazing land dotted with gum trees
  • in the UK, 90 m from a metal gate on the footpath up the field of buttercups
  • in somewhat hilly but still farmable countryside in Illinois, up an embankment with tall grass and Queen Anne’s Lace in bloom
  • and at a school in West Frankfort, Illinois, with a large map of the US painted on the playground, with a big star mapping the location of the school (and the dashpoint)

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