Saturday, June 4, 2016

OTBR: A Free, Self-Service Guesthouse in Estonia

Latitude: N 59° 05.892
Longitude: E 025° 32.268

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, near a free-to-use self-service public guesthouse with smoke-sauna and several camping facilities
  • in an industrial area of Melbourne, along a pot-holed road lined with a high brick fence tagged with colourful graffiti
  • out of reach on the Williamtown RAAF Base in New South Wales
  • under loose chicken wire, through a lot of blackberry bush, over a flowing creek, in open pasture land in New South Wales
  • in a low drainage portion of a fallow field in Nebraska in smoke filled air from wildfires in Minnesota
  • in Victoria, Australia, down a slick clay path and in between rows of possibly 30 year old pine trees
  • in the woods on the side a divided highway in Pennsylvania, near the Weiser Farm Market ("Be Wise, Buy Weiser")
  • just past the intersection of Gunpowder Road with Clipper Mill Road in Maryland, near a very old RV with part of the hood removed
  • in Illinois, in a fenced corral where two very nice looking horses were casually grazing
  • inside a waste metal recycling area in Aston, England, whose local football team, Aston Villa, has been bought by a Chinese businessman
  • more than 100 meters into Sugarloaf Reservoir in Victoria, Australia, even though the water level is down 6m
  • in an empty paddock in Victoria, Australia, near the historic Muckleford Railway Station, used in the film "The Dressmaker"
  • in a meadow in central Austria, near the golf course "Golfclub-Reiting"
  • in a plowed field in Nebraska, in hilly land with spring-green grass and lots of Lewis and Clark historical markers
  • in South Dakota, in more featureless farm country where one mile is indistinguishable from another, near a billboard that says, "Eat steak, wear fur, carry guns - it's the American Way!"
  • in Arizona, near a house with two lion statues perched upon either side of a wide open gate and a large stained glass door
  • in central California, in natural desert landscape that has not been leveled for farming ("the creosote bushes were fairly healthy but the elder Joshua trees seemed to be aging a bit")
  • halfway up the side of Black Mountain in the Sloan Canyon National Conservation Area near Henderson, Nevada ("The hike was grueling work and I shouldn't have waited until the hottest point in the afternoon")
  • in front of home in Fairfield, California, on a street where all homes are various shades of tan with slightly different stonework entryways
  • in a marsh in Mississippi down a dirt road that multiple water trucks were using
  • in New Jersey, just off the Greenwood Lake Turnpike, near a bridge over the Monksville Reservoir in the Wanaque Wildlife Preserve
  • and on railroad tracks across from American Legion Post 403 outside Des Moines, Iowa, scored on Memorial Day

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