Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Blessings and Oddities on the Road in Pennsylvania

I've been visiting a lot of small towns in Pennsylvania recently, and I've run across some strange and amusing  sights. Come along for the ride...

 The Chop Shop in Butler served the best burritos I've had outside of Texas. That wouldn't be saying much, but these weren't just good - they were delicious. Here's the owner after a rough lunch shift. The place was hopping - with good reason. Great food, great atmosphere, great staff. If you're in Butler, PA- go.
 I have no idea whether this little gargoyle is supposed to be picking his nose or just thinking hard. He was only one of a dozen or so that circled a building in downtown Butler, and each one is different. Seemed like no one else even noticed those quirky creatures perched just over their heads. The whole building reminded me of that line in Ghostbusters when Aykroyd's character says, "No one EVER built them like that."
 Roadside oddity. It just caught my attention so I turned around in the rain and went back to take a picture.
 Another face on the side of a building - this one in Ephrata. I'm not sure what the significance is of these faces on buildings. You sure don't see this kind of whimsy on modern buildings.
 Here's a sculpture entitled, Amish Boy on His Tractor. It's stuck off on a side street on a lot strewn with huge, hewn stones, and no one seems to know what the purpose of the installation was. Are the stones a foundation that has fallen into disrepair? Or are they leftover building materials that were dumped there?
 These daffodils and crocuses made me happy. This was last week, so it's safe to say that spring sprung early this year. Blessing, indeed.
 Another quirky face, this one in an iron foundation grating. The people who built these buildings would, I imagine, have been deeply religious, so I'm not sure what the purpose of these pagan-looking faces could have been. Whatever it was, I love it. 
This is the leftover trunk of some kind of vine which was trained (I assume) to grow over many years entwined in this iron fence. It's at least 6 inches thick in some places, and thoroughly embedded into the fence. Amazing that the fencing held up this long with minimal distortion. This is also in Ephrata. I wonder if it will sprout again as the weather warms?
 Looks like a loo to me, on the grounds of the Ephrata museum.
 Who could resist getting their car worked on at a place with such a great sign?
This cemetery is in Mifflinburg. Don't those mausoleums on the hillside look like Hobbit homes? 
 This is a blessing. Can you say, "bucolic"? I knew you could.

After a rainy day, I saw this lovely rainbow along Route 104. It may not be visible in this photo, but all the colors were sharply delineated. A true, full rainbow. May you find your blessings - pot of gold or otherwise - on your journeys.

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