Thursday, April 13, 2017

Spotted Along the Byways

One Christmas, the Christmas tree that we had painstakingly tied to the roof of the Chrysler mini-van flew off onto the roadway behind us, narrowly missing the car that was in our wake.  Of course, we quickly braked and then reversed to retrieve the precious cargo.  (As a result, Spousal Unit jammed the tree into the back of the van to avoid another catastrophe. As Number One Daughter tells it, she was pulling pine needles from her hair for weeks after this event since the tree was practically in her lap.)  Anyway, the point is – we didn’t leave the tree on the side of road.
Apparently, we are alone in this practice – our recent road trips have presented numerous opportunities to observe trash on the highway.  Ever wonder about the various belongings that are smashed up against the concrete barrier?  Take the metal frame of a table – did someone see that fly off the back of the truck and think ‘thank goodness we don’t have to take that to the landfill!’ Or the mattress – who just leaves a mattress on a four-lane highway?  And then there’s the red Coleman cooler.  Do you suppose some guy arrived at the Keith Urban concert and said “Oh, damn, I lost my cooler.”?   Perhaps the 40 pieces of clothing scattered on the off ramp are akin to Hansel’s bread crumbs, to point the way home.

Our byways deliver entertainment in other forms as well, from the sublime (church on the hillside) to the silly (Dinosaur Kingdom II).  


I also enjoy reading bumper stickers and magnets.  As an avid runner, I am proud of my 13.1 magnet.  So, you can understand that I am scratching my head over the 0.0 magnet!
Springtime driving through the mountains of Tennessee, the Carolinas, and the Virginias is nothing short of delightful.  Eye candy abounds – redbuds and dogwoods pop against the still-brown background of the hillsides.  On the last few days of our trip, splotches of misty green appeared among the trees, and I thought at length about how to describe the look of it.  My best shot?  It’s as though Jack Frost picked up the wrong paint can and had a dizzy night sprinkling drops of color here and there.

"I opened two gifts this morning.  They were my eyes." Author unknown.


  1. So much beauty surrounds us and then folks go and crap it up with their unwanted belongings. Garbage is a huge problem here. No litter laws -- although, there may actually possibly be some, they just aren't enforced. Unfortunately, littering for some seems to come naturally which I find quite disturbing. To me it shows a lack of respect for the environment and fellow human beings who also inhabit the earth. It is something I am on my soapbox about quite often.

  2. On the way home tonight, I saw a recliner snuggled up to the concrete barrier on a six-lane highway - urghhh!