Day 37: Home, Safe!

The slow, painful drive home continued on Sunday.  We arrived back in NYC a couple hours after Hurricane Irene’s passing.  Some downed trees in my neighborhood and lots of leaves.   NYC got off much easier than the Catskills where there are rivers cresting at about 20 feet right now.  After all the media drama, Irene was nothing more than a big rain storm here.  In the Park this morning, a few more downed trees and small lakes where there’s normally just grass.  The dogs back to their morning routine (running in the Park) — and I’ll be back to work tonight since the subways are running again.

Trip recap:  This was the most stressful trip I’ve ever taken because of all the mechanical problems.  I blame it on inept mechanics — not Sparkle.   The dealership in Grand Forks finally got it right — no more glitches after that.  For the most part, great weather.  Although it seemed we’d never even get to MN after all the early troubles in the trip, I managed to get through about 80% of my stack.  So that leaves about a week’s worth of stuff undone in WI & MN that will have to wait til a MT & WY trip, probably summer 2013.


Trip stats

days on the road:  36

photos for the website:  approx. 5,100

miles driven:  14,060

total spent on speeding tickets:  $205 (total of two – Ironwood & Manistique, MI; one verbal warning in WI)

total spent on gas:  $3,315

total spent on repairs:
$673 for an A/C compressor (which should be reimbursed, all or part, since the part was less than a month old)
$0 (fuel pump replaced for $995 but then reimbursed when it the fuses continued blowing)
$437 (for three frayed wires and an evaporator vent valve = the resolution of “check engine” light and fuse problem)

Expenses not kept track of:  oil changes/maintenance, motels, food, etc.

Memories, good times, and photos:   more than worth every penny!   And the dogs give the trip an A+.

If you’d like to help with the costs of these trips, the website, all that… no amount is too small, my Paypal account is the same as my email:


Now, on with the final photos from Friday.

The morning started in Marshall — so here’s a couple of shots from the big hotel which, sadly, has been boarded up for years:


A nice mid-century bank in town:

One more from Marshall:

This one from Ghent:


At Brad’s Market in Minneota:



On to South Dakota.  I went to Prairie Village in Madison to check out the steam-powered, super rare Herschell-Spillman carousel.  A madhouse there since they were having a big tractor show.  Which turned out to be pretty interesting.  One of the stars — sputtering and whirring:

I know nothing about tractors but can easily understand the obsession with them:



From Freeman:



On to Yankton — a new city for me and one of the biggest reasons for the extra miles traveling SW of Minnesota even on the last day of shooting:


From Beresford.  The apostrophe probably a mistake, but no matter:



On to Sioux Falls for some reshooting from previous grey trips — and a few things not noticed or shot before:



Although this Burger Time building has a 1960s/1970s look, evidently this chain was founded in Fargo, ND in 1987.  I don’t know if any of the other ND/SD locations have this rootop triangle thingie:



More from Sioux Falls.  It was in the 90s today — so ice cream sounded like a good idea.  The B&G Milkyway rooftop sign has a tilted cone like Dairy Queen and Tastee-Freez.  But I don’t think this place was built as either of those.

I went with the Peach Avalanche — which was vanilla soft-serve with some “real” peach chunks.  Sorry bout the crappy photo — wasn’t going to shoot it but changed my mind in traffic.



Back in Minnesota — from Worthington.  These customized rubber mats are very rare now I think:

And they have a nice embossed plastic sign as well:



Last one for the trip — and I think it’s a kicker.  From St. James.   Art deco borders, great colors, and best of all — the loaf on top:

So, with this trip over, I’ll get back to work on the website in a day or two.  I’m only about halfway through adding the TX & OK photos from the spring.  Hoping to catch up with these two trips’ photos this winter.  Then, it will be time to start planning the next five-weeker.  Spring 2012, the dogs and I will be headed back to western TX so I can finish what I didn’t get to this year.   Then moving on to NM and AZ.  I’ll probably sneak off for a couple quickie trips this fall or winter.

You might want to check in now and then with the “Upcoming Trips” page here at the blog or the “What’s New” page at the website if you don’t want to miss these posts.  Thanks for tagging along with us.  Your comments and praises are much appreciated and give me a real boost.  It keeps me doing posting when I really should be sleeping.  I hope my photos and chatter encourage you to shoot more, travel more, and find art and value in the rusty, crusty, funky places and things that are rapidly disappearing.

Til the next adventure,

Debra Jane
Gripper, Fixie, Sputnik & Gremlin
Sparkle & Dee

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s