2013 ~ Sometimes I make a trip to a place that I think will provide a lot of content and photos to share... and it just doesn't live up to my expectations. Either I don't find what I am looking for or the weather doesn't cooperate or any number of things conspire to make it less than successful.
Usually there is not enough of a story to tell. The Not so Swampy Swamp was like that; there was nothing interesting to me or to tell you about until I went back and discovered the trail under the highway to the Botanic park.
Recently I went to a few places that just didn't give me enough material for a full adventure on their own, so this is taking literary license and making a .. composite report.
Rosenberg is southwest of town, a bit further down the freeway from where I turn off to go to Brazos Bend State Park. When I went to Rosenberg I was somewhat distracted and didn't have much of a plan. I did like the way you can still angle park on the downtown streets. And not every old building has been retro-fitted as an antique store. I found a couple of cool things to share.
This was on the side of an old building. I had to stand in the alley and frame out some distractions to get this. I am pretty sure the parts you can no longer read say "in bottles". From what I can research, this was a push to get consumers to buy bottled coke instead of drinking it at the soda fountain. You could buy a six-pack of bottled cokes in 1922.
Just a few feet down from the Coke sign was something I couldn't resist. A smart meter on a hundred year old plus building. Who would have thought? This brick building might have been the pharmacy mentioned in this article on the history of Rosenberg. I wish I had paid more attention, now.
No matter where you go, there are kittehs. I have photographed dozens in my neighborhood. Most don't get too upset if you move slowly and of course the zoom helps.
I processed this one in black and white because it seemed to go with the 50s feeling. You do know the that period is now called... Mid-Century Modern. The agency is still in business in case you want to give them a call.
This window was on a empty and derelict house in the downtown area. I would love to know the story on the house. It is in the shadow of the water tower, and might have been a rather fancy residence once upon a time. Maybe I will go back and see if I can find out more.
Old Town Spring
North of town a few miles up the freeway from the Mercer Arboretum is Old Town Spring. It is another small town that was big during the railroad era and and then got bypassed by the interstate. There are plenty of Mc Mansions and housing developments around Spring, but the old downtown area has turned itself into an Antique, Craft and Tea House destination. I am told it is really busy during the Christmas season, but the day I was there was a bit quiet. I didn't go inside any of the stores. I don't need anything new; I am at the stage where I am trying to get rid of possessions, not acquire more.
More interesting than the crafts and what-nots were the buildings. I wonder how many they moved in from other areas? A few are boarded up, not sure how profitable the antique business is year round.
I did eat at one of the Tea Rooms, Ellen's Cafe, and it was excellent. There were lots of ladies out for the afternoon and discussing the bargains and treasures they found. But I didn't need any hand-painted mailboxes or candles or jars of potpourri.
I just wish I had been paying more attention when the train went by!
And then I went out Northwest past Cypress to Kleb Woods Nature Preserve. Now, this place has a very interesting story. Seems the Kleb family farmed the area since the mid 1800s and finally the last of the Kleb family was left alone on the property. The way the story goes, he was not a worldly man and didn't understand he was to pay property taxes until the bill was huge and he was in danger of losing it all. A receivership was created, Texas Parks and Wildlife found the funds to buy the farm and opened a Nature Preserve on part. The old man continued to live in his home until he died, then the rest of the property was added to the Nature Preserve.
The house isn't open to the public, but you can peek in the windows and see the wood stove and simple furnishings. It is a perfect size, and in a beautiful setting. I might go back in the Spring, there is an arbor and garden in the front.
The blacksmith's building is open and there are some horse-drawn farm machinery out front. Farming was hard work, ya'll.
The day I went up there it was pretty cold still. I did see a LOT of birds, but they were all in the bushes and trees and not good photographic material. I saw multiple Downy Woodpeckers and a lot of Chickadees and Nuthatches. Cardinals and sparrows and even one Hawk. They were either too far away, too skittish, or both. I used my binoculars much more than the camera on this trip.
Most of my photos looked like this. You can tell that is a Downy Woodpecker, right? In dense brush my auto-focus goes crazy. By the time you finally get it set, the bird is gone.
At least Lovely Dead Crap doesn't move.
But the woods are nice and noisy! I heard a lot of birds and it was a challenge to try to locate them. Amazing how loud a silly Tufted Titmouse can be. You can't believe such sound from a bird that size.
I did see something
pink at eye level that caused me to investigate. You see red berries and
flowers in the woods, sometimes a pinky flower at ground level. But
this was just not a normal color for the woods in February.
Want to see what I found?
So adventuring is like that. You never know how it is going to turn out! Do you have any requests for my crack investigative work and photographic skills? I mean somewhere I can do a day trip; unless someone wants to buy me a ticket to Costa Rica.
Let me know in the comments. Remember, you can just log in with a fake name and ignore all the other parts if that makes you more comfortable. Up to you.