Sunday, May 18, 2014

High Plains Tempest

A few Sundays ago, we left Denver and drove East to better position ourselves for a Monday load. A storm front was setting up over the divide, turning Denver and its surrounds into a blizzard-y mess. The Eastern reach of the storm was expected to produce severe thunderstorms, snow, sleet, rain, and gusty winds. We figured that by leaving early, we could avoid the worst of the slow-moving weather.

And of course, the storm blew itself farther East and much earlier than anticipated.

Early in the drive, we were treated to beautiful, sublime storm clouds:

Despite being flat as a billiard table, the elevation in Eastern Colorado ranges from 5,000 feet to 3,500 feet, making the storms seem more imposing.

Steve - who believes he's tornado bait - had me watching the clouds for rotation.

The wind had come up and was averaging over 35 mph, with gusts hitting nearly 60. The highway was alive with tumbleweeds, both big and small:

Naturally, that stirred up the dirt and dust in the enormous fields on either side of the road:

Which got quite thick before we drove out of it:

And then - hail, sleet, and snow. Not a lot, but enough to make it messy:

Eventually, we drove out of it and into bright sunshine:

It's better to see that dark sky in the mirror instead of the windshield.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Mother's Day in Vermont

On Saturday evening, we delivered a jet engine to an aeronautics firm at the airport in Burlington, Vermont. And although we were too far away to spend the next day with family, the locale and weather made for a very pleasant day.

Again, the pics were taken from a moving truck, so I apologize for the splattered bugs, glass reflections, and absence of any shots of picturesque Lake Champlain.

The Adirondacks from the East:

Random oddities on the way to Burlington:

We couldn't figure out why hay bale sculptures of dogs were so popular:

Just over the state line on the New York side, we found a little diner that served real homemade food. I had a roast pork dinner (old-time Vermonters refer to "lunch" as "dinner", just as we did in Maine), with mashed taters and gravy, cornbread stuffing, squash, homemade bread, and pickled beets. It was like being fed by a relative. Delicious!

We parked just West of Albany to await load offers.

I hope everyone had a terrific Mother's Day. :)

Monday, May 12, 2014

Death by Turbine

For four years, we've driven through enormous wind farms in the Midwest and Western states. Some stretch for ten miles or more. They're eerily beautiful, silent monsters, as magnificent and striking during the day as they are at night, when a red light affixed to the top pulses in unison with the hundreds of others on the horizon.

What we have yet to see, though, are the piles of bird carcasses that these wind farms allegedly effect - in fact, we've not seen a single dead bird at the base of any of these turbines. Being the skeptic that I am, I chalked the bird-killing hype up to tree hugger hysteria.

Until a random photo caught a large raven motoring straight for the nearest windmill:

Kamikaze birds. 

Who knew?

A Sure Sign

You're coming to grips with getting older when you start juicing.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Ready For It This Time

Every daylight trip through Baton Rouge, we pass this sign and I kick myself for forgetting to have the camera ready. But as we trekked through last week, I was on my game...

Ta da! Schlittz & Giggles.

(If you giggle too much, do you get the Sch -- never mind!)

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Allentown Daffodil

Plucked from a corner in Buffalo's Allentown district on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. 

She - A Beauty

Ohhh, yes. I have no doubt she-a real beaut.

Pic taken in Aurora, Colorado.