Seeing Things, Saying Things

Musings About Writing, Photography and Teaching

Archive for the ‘Buildings’ Category

Golden Reflection

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A building going on overlooking Baltimore’s Inner Harbor had gold siding that casts a golden glow in the waters by the Baltimore World Trade Center. The latter is partly visible at right. I don’t know what the building is that is under construction but I would guess that it will be a hotel, condominiums or apartments.

Although the skies were most sunny when we arrived in Baltimore, a massive bank of clouds would roll in before we left. The area in the foreground is cordoned off to encourage the development of aquatic life.

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When Thirsty in Bloomigton

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Like any college town, Bloomington, Indiana, has an abundance of bars, including sports bars, where you can cheer on your alma matter, in which case Indiana University.

Some of these bars are local traditions, having been around for decades and multiple generations of students. That helps sustain them as scads of alumni return to campus to relive some of the more memorable moments of their college days. And those don’t involve siting in a classroom.

Nick’s English Hut was founded in 1927 and has a prime location about two blocks west of the campus on Kirkwood Avenue, a major street connecting IU and downtown Bloomington. Most people know it as simply Nick’s.

Aside from beer, Nick’s also features the typical pub grub that you would expect in sports bar, but it also known for its stromboli sandwiches. The menu describes the traditional strom as a pizza sandwich.

While in Bloomington last year I didn’t venture into Nick’s and in face it has been many years since I’ve been inside the place.

But I did pause to photograph the exterior, making a mental note that it hasn’t changed at all from how it appeared when I first began attending IU in August 1983.

However, as I studied the bottom photograph I realized I didn’t remember there being sidewalk tables back in the day. So maybe the place has changed slightly.

Chelsea Clock Tower

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Built by John Glazier as a water tower in 1907, the Chelsea Clock tower is one of this Michigan city’s most iconic images. It once served an industrial complex, but today has been restored and re-purposed into offices and businesses. The tower itself is eight stories tall.

Red Barn at Sunset

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I was about to wrap up a walk on the Portage Hike and Bike trail near Kent, Ohio, when I noticed the late day sunlight nicely illuminating a red barn and old farm house at the Beckwith Orchard.

I had to walk out into the orchard for a slight distance to get a clear sight line on the barn and hope that the sun didn’t dip below the tree line before I could get there.

But I made it and got the image of the barn. The orchard is still open, but won’t be for much longer as the fall apple season draws to a close.

 

Another Old Building

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I like old buildings. Maybe I like them because they’ve stood for a long time. Maybe I like them because they remind me of another time. Maybe I like them because they are classy.

Whatever the case, when I see one I like to photograph it.

This particular structure stands at the foot of Main Street in Summerhill, Pennsylvania.

It probably used to be a store, but has apparently been repurposed. Notice the garage door in front to the left of the front door.

If I had to guess I would say this building has been made into housing, perhaps apartments.

It seems odd that all of the windows are either boarded up or closed off with curtains. Or maybe not. It was early morning when I was there and not many people were yet out and about.

Industrial Space

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You can find blocks like this one in every American city and town of any size.

An old red brick factory sits in the heart of the city, often next to a railroad track.

Some of these industries are very much alive and well while others sit silent and vacant as monuments to another era. In a few cases, the buildings have been repurposed.

I’m not sure of the status of this industrial site in Marion, Ohio, but there is something about it that is quintessentially American and typical of the Midwest.

The boarded up windows on the first floor suggest abandonment, but the windows on the second floor suggests life.

The fading paint on the side that once proclaimed what company owned this building and what it made is a testament to another time.

Written by csanders429

October 18, 2017 at 6:17 am

And They’re All Made Out of Ticky Tacky

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When I made this image I thought of the 1962 song written by Malvina Reynolds titled Little Boxes.

The song is a commentary on suburban America in which everyone not only lives in houses that all look the same but also lead lives that are all pretty much the same.

Released in 1963 by Pete Seeger, Little Boxes speaks specifically to tract housing — something called cookie cutter housing — that became widespread after World War II.

This neighborhood in Kent, Ohio, may not be tract housing per se. In fact, it might be filled with custom homes built to a design agreed to by the folks who paid to build the home. These homes are hardly small.

Yet I can’t help but think of the song because those who live in this development have much in common with those described in the song as having gone to universities to become doctors, lawyers and business executives.

Given the prices of these homes, only those who are affluent could afford to live here.

It may not be a “cookie-cutter neighborhood” as such, yet it has much in common with countless suburban developments favored by the middle to upper middle class across America.

This neighborhood and these homes could be anywhere. Still, there is something pleasing about such neighborhoods, which in and of itself helps to explain their popularity.

Written by csanders429

September 15, 2017 at 7:18 am