“To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.” – Bill Bryson
I love to live my life one day at a time and just simply going with the flow. I feel I have the best days and the greatest adventures this way- just going, wherever the wind blows.
Yesterday, I had a busy day full of morning errands to run - I was exhausted after getting very little sleep the night before and after being sick and 'stuck' in the house for 4 days straight. I needed out, I needed adventure, I needed to take photos.
Photography is the most amazing therapy for me (hey now, I don't really NEED therapy, but you get what I'm saying ;) )
It fuels me up- it FILLS my soul.
So, after running errands, I grabbed a burger and soda at Culvers, filled up my Jeep with gas- and headed... to nowhere.
Really, I was headed to nowhere specific, but to anywhere I was lead to.
My phone battery had died which means no google maps/gps and I had no map.
Just me, my Jeep, my camera, and a sloppy burger filled with too much ketchup. (I like mine with cheese, pickles and 'light' ketchup, I'd sure hate to see the burger with a regular amount of ketchup;) )
The more I explore, and the more I rely on my intuition vs. a map- the better I get at it. I also am pretty sure relying on God to lead my adventures plays a big part in me turning down the right roads.
I started in Eau Claire- I took a left, took another left, went straight about 20 miles, took a right, wasn't finding anything that said 'Take my photo' . A little disappointed, I pulled the Jeep over to the side of the road and just sat. Oh and finished that messy burger I mentioned above.
I sat and thought- and I waited for that 'feeling' of where to go next.
I felt it. I threw the Jeep in Drive and took a left. I ended up on a road a Facebook page fan had told me to travel on-not knowing where anything was on it, just knowing that it was worth traveling on. I came across several abandoned homes on that road, the first few were not enough to make me stop- I had a limited amount of time, and had to be choosy what I stopped for. About 30 minutes onto this new road, I was on the mind set of just getting home-when I spotted a ' Methodist Church -> way ' sign. I noticed a blue barn & another rusty old shed off in the distance, and a cemetery near the church sign. I kept on driving, not turning towards it.
But, something was pulling at me, something was telling me to turn around and go back. I had such strong feelings to go back.. 'go back, turn around' the feeling was telling me.
So, I did.
Let your mind take a back-road adventure with me,..are you ready? Buckle up, let's go! This is what I found down this one small stretch of road that wasn't visible off of the main road-just by listening to a feeling.
Be very careful when you step here, the ice is mighty slippery. It is a trick to learn to balance your camera and yourself, maybe I should use the tripod -and maybe I need one for myself too-hah!
Okay for this shot, crouch down low, even with the snowbank, wait ..not IN the snowbank. Shake the snow off your pants, and try again...
There you go! See how the snow drift is in the left corner!? It was worth it to get snow filled pants.
Let's hop back in the Jeep and go down the road around the next corner.
Amazing finds just from following some feelings I had. Aren't you glad you came along?! But wait! I don't think the adventure is over just quite yet, let's head back towards the main road and see what we come across...
Ooh I think I spy something... do you see it too? Let's try to get a little bit closer..
Wow-what an adventure so far! My mind is almost overwhelmed with all I have seen this far- I often put myself into the shoes of the families who may have lived in these homes, and I wonder things like 'Did the kids play here?" , "Did the mom cook dinner here?" and "Did the dad work hard out in this field" I love these feelings, but sometimes it can get emotional, seeing something that was once so full of love, something that used to be someones dream... now slowly sinking and fading away. I'm going to pull over to the side of the road (yet, again) and have a little drink of water and a snack and just, think ..and take in this day and this adventure.
As I lay my head back on the head rest in my Jeep, I look up and out the window and see an Eagle swooping over the field just outside my window, and apparently it is snack time for Mr Eagle too. Talk about awesome timing.
Now that the Eagle and I enjoyed our snack together, (thankfully I had brought my own snack and didn't have to share) I think it's time to keep on moving down the road! Let's see if there is anything to see , while making our way home.
What a house! Look at it just a minute ^ Imagine what it would have looked like right after it was built. Imagine how happy the family was that would be moving into it- fresh and new?!
Okay now we really need to keep on driving, no more stopping or we'll be late to pick up the kids from the bus-stop!
Oh, wait! Forget what I just said. Look up there on that hill! I'll just take a quick photo and be on my way.
Okay, well, maybe I have time to march up the hill and get a bit closer...
Oh the beautiful details!
I'm kind of curious what is inside, aren't you?
Let's just peek into the porch quick...
Don't you just love the blue porch ceiling? Did you know years ago in Southern Farm homes, this was a very common thing to see. They believed it kept the insects away and gave the porch a more open feel- I love it, and I will be doing this in our back porch as well.
I am going to bump the front door open, just enough to see inside a little bit...
Imagine- the bedrooms, the children sleeping...the little halos on their heads. Step back and imagine the home YOU are in now- in this state. How does that make you feel?
I think we'll run around the back peek in the back door quick too, I really don't feel like falling into an abandoned basement today!
I am just so exhausted this week, especially after this big adventure... I think I may just give into the sleepiness, and take a little snooze on this couch,....
Then again, maybe not...
Now my friends, it is finally time for us to put the lens cap back on the camera, the Jeep back in Drive and head back home.
I truly hope you enjoyed coming along on my latest photo adventure on the back roads of Western Wisconsin!
Thanks for reading and adventuring with me,