Road Trip: Southeastern US, 2018 – Part 1

My wife and I had some time in May to take a little road trip to see our respective sets of parents. We didn’t have a lot of time because of work and other commitments on our respective schedules, so if you’re in the areas we visited and wondering why we didn’t make social calls, that’s why. Anyway, we hit a few states over a little more than a week.

The trip south was a two-day affair. We stopped in Vandalia, Ohio, for dinner, thus allowing much of the rush-hour traffic in Cincinnati to clear out. I found this nifty American Legion hall sign.

We did the overnight in Lexington, Kentucky, at a Courtyard. This particular Courtyard actually had a courtyard, and the courtyard had some seasonal residents.

Seriously good work by the staff at the Courtyard.

Our second travel day saw us take a break in Gadsden, Alabama, so that I could try to catch as many Charmanders as possible on Pokémon GO Community Day. (I don’t remember my total haul, but I did catch six shiny Charmanders, so it was a good day.) Along the way, I managed to snag a few photos, some of which I’ll share here.

I love these old-school, Coke-sponsored signs.

The front of the buildings is here, but the back has departed for the great downtown in the sky.

What a lovely post office!

Vintage neon!

Anniston and Oxford offered some fun scenery. The stuff that I found on the run will find its way into a What I See When I Run post. As for the rest, … well, here ya go.

I can’t wait to see what the Anniston Runners Club offices look like when they’re completed.

This old service station would be majestic with a little TLC.

After a few days in Alabama, the trip shifted to North Carolina. Those photos are coming soon.

What I See When I Run: Anniston/Oxford

While on vacation in May, I did lots of running. Here are some of the best things I saw in Anniston and Oxford, Alabama.

This is such a beautiful, historic building.

Ty Cobb spent some time in Anniston. I’m sure some folks will dispute the “greatest baseball player of all time” designation, but he was definitely very good.

The dogs hanging out at Piper’s Playhouse were very happy to say hello when I ran by. And when I stopped. And probably any other time.

There are so many ducklings here!

I lived in Calhoun County for many years, but I had never before seen this creek, or drain, or whatever it is.

Road Trip: Georgia/Alabama, 2014 – Part 3

Here are a few more photos from this Southern adventure.

My sister’s cat, Phoebe, is amazing and cranky all at the same time. She adopted my sister, literally — she got in the car and wouldn’t get out.

Toe beans.

I ran a half marathon the last day I was in Alabama; amazingly enough, I finished second in my age group and (if memory serves) seventh overall.

That’s all for this trip! If you enjoyed these photos, you can find the rest of the highlights here and here.

Road Trip: Georgia/Alabama, 2014 – Part 2

After visiting Georgia, we trekked to Alabama. Part of our time there involved a trip to Tuscaloosa. My wife had never been to The University of Alabama, and I managed to snag tickets to Alabama’s game against South Florida. (Later on, you’ll see how tough a ticket that was.) It’s always nice to return to the Capstone, and here are a few photos from that trip.

The historical marker at Tuscaloosa City Hall is kind of worn, but I like it that way.

Evergreen Cemetery is adjacent to Bryant-Denny Stadium, and houses perhaps even more history than its more famous neighbor.

I’m not sure I’ve ever seen more text on one historical marker than I’ve seen on this one for Tuscaloosa’s Evergreen Cemetery.

The entire time I was in school at Alabama, I never ate at Rama Jama’s. I fixed that error.

“Alabama, listen, mother, / To our vows of love….”

The South Florida – Alabama game featured a canine halftime show!

For the first set of photos from this trip, click here or click here for the next set.

Road Trip: Georgia/Alabama, 2014 – Part 1

In November/December 2014, my wife and I traveled to see family in Alabama and Georgia. We started in Georgia, seeing my adopted big sister and her family.

My amazing relationship with Stacey, Patrick, and Noah are proof positive that you can choose family, too.

There’s always a pet or three in their home, and my favorite is Turkey. That cat is not smart, but he’s a good-looking guy.

As the adage says, he fits, so he sits.

Aside from our hosts, the highlight of the first stage of the trip was a visit to Old Mill Park in Roswell, Georgia. The park is full of history and natural beauty.

One of the many old structures standing in the park.

Part of the old mill

Covered bridge over Big Creek

I’m sure Bob Ross would have considered this to be a happy little waterfall.

Mill race to serve the mill that used to be in service next to Big Creek

The water was still enough in places to serve as a mirror.

Looking back toward the waterfall.

You can find more photos from this trip here and here.

Non-Road Trip: Alabama, 2016

In June, 2016, I traveled down to Alabama to help take care of my mom while she recovered from a knee replacement. Normally, I would have driven to Alabama, but my doctor discouraged that, given that I had surgery scheduled a little more than a month from when the trip started. So, I flew to and from Alabama, making this a non-road trip, even if I did some driving while in Alabama. I still took photos of things during my travels, because that’s just what I do.

When this trip took place, we didn’t have Chick-fil-A restaurants popping up all over Michigan, so this sign was a welcome sight, because I knew waffle fries were in my immediate future.

This is the post office I visited when I was growing up.

This is Phoebe. She allows my sister and brother-in-law to live with her.

She also felt the need to carefully inspect my camera.

The folks who named this place were doing it right.

It was nice to explore a bit of history while awaiting my flight home.

This is Fisherman by Frank Fleming.

My mom sent me home with toys for the cats. Here, Wembley shows his approval.

Road Trip: Mobile, 2017 – Part 3

The last full day in Mobile featured a fun 5k and some more sightseeing.

Ben Mee branch, Mobile Public Library

This is one of the best-ever backdrops for a race finish.

The Government Street Presbyterian Church is one of the myriad historic sites in Mobile.

All good things come to an end, and we had to take our leave of Mobile and make our way back to Michigan.

This sign needs to be everywhere.

My hotel waffle-making skills are strong.

It’s also nice when someone else makes the waffle. Yes, I had waffles twice in one day. #sorrynotsorry

One does not simply walk into Waffle House and make a breakfast taco. Wait, one totally does that.

No matter how well they treat him, Wembley fears cat-sitters. He was very happy that we returned home.

That’s it for this trip! If you missed the previous parts of this series, you can check them out here and here.

Road Trip: Mobile, 2017 – Part 2

A visit to the USS Alabama (BB-60) was the centerpiece of the road trip. Literally, it’s the thing that was on the schedule first. My father, who as a young child donated to the effort to bring the Alabama home to Mobile, had never seen the ship in person. That had to be corrected. Here are a few photos from our visit to Battleship Memorial Park.

 

A panoramic shot of the USS Alabama

 

Three of the Alabama‘s 16-inch guns

Sight for a 20-mm machine gun

Looking toward the bow from a perch several decks above the main deck

The superstructure of the USS Drum

If you’re curious about part 1 of the photos from this trip, click here; for the next part, click here.

Road Trip: Mobile, 2017 – Part 1

I’m way behind on a number of things; one of those things is in sharing photos. I’m 2-3 years behind on that stuff, so I’m trying to dig out the backlog. This post will share a few of my favorite photos from the trip that my wife and I took to Mobile, Alabama, in May 2017.

Pretty much every trip south for us hits a Waffle House early. We don’t have those in Michigan, so Waffle House is a must-visit location. This one is in Daleville, Indiana.

Waffle House, Daleville, Indiana

The next highlight of the trip was in a little commercial strip in Athens, Alabama. Here, we found Joe’s World Famous Pizzeria. In most cases, the phrase “world famous” is a bit of an exaggeration, but that’s not really the case here. Joe Carlucci has won multiple world pizza championships and hold a couple of Guinness world records for his pizza skills. Joe left my wife and me feeling like we were his long-time friends, and prepared amazing calzones for us. He shared a number of stories from his pizza-making adventures, and treated us to cannoli for desert. We look forward to our next visit to Athens.

The man himself: Joe Carlucci performing his wondrous craft

Legendary calzone (well, half of one)

Our first day proper in Mobile featured a walk around downtown Mobile and a trip to GulfQuest, the national maritime museum of the Gulf of Mexico. Given that I enjoy photographing ships and neon signs, both of these destinations worked well for me.

GL Calmena

Naman’s Department Store neon sign

Hoffman Furniture Company neon sign

For the next parts of this series, click here and here.