Road trips are always so much fun, but I’ll admit that I always think I’ll travel further in a day than I actually do. My car seems to brake for almost every American Roadside Attractions. When I planned my trip south from Portland to Truckee, California, I used the ARA website to chart my stops. However, when it came time to actually find all the weird stuff I was blocked at almost every turn: couldn’t find it or it was in a place where I couldn’t pull over.
But the other thing that you have to think about is where are you going to stay? Do you want the small town historic inn, the newly built hotel or the 1950’s tacky motel?
I love the last choice, but not where I lay my head. I choose the 1950’s era motels only to take photos of their signs. Many of the ones I have seen so far on this trip have had the neon bulbs removed. I’m sorry to see that. But I continue to take the photos and record their place in history.
Besides the motels I love the old movie theaters. Many are from the 1930’s. Some are restored and still in use, but others have been reincarnated. Still others are in the process of being restored. As luck should have it, as I was taking a photo of the theater in Yreka a car pulled up in front. Darn! But the woman driver asked if she was in my way and sheepishly said ‘yes’. So she moved her car and then graciously offered to give me a tour inside the theater. It’s too bad that this once Art Dec building had been turned into a twin cinema and lost most of its architectural charm. But I loved getting a private tour.
As I continue my journey to my final destination I will keep taking the odd sign photo. I just like them.
PS: Oh, one last thing. I will never complain about the weather in Portland. It’s 95 where I am right now and the sun is harsh and bright and it is difficult to make nice photographs. Give me the clouds and rain to this blasting sun….at least when I am out with my camera.