February 28, 2019

Rockland Rail Crossing

I was driving on Rockland Road yesterday when the lights at the railroad crossing starting flashing and the gates came down. Knowing that the trains that go through there are often very long, I shifted into "park" and got out my camera. I could take a few pictures and listen to the radio.

The trains there go to and from the nearby "Inland Port," a major train to truck transfer point. Years ago, I lived near Potomac Yards in Alexandria, which then served the same purpose. It closed in the 1980s, but I can still hear the sound clanking and squealing sounds that the trains made there. They are engraved in my memory. I didn't mind them though; there was something comforting about the noise.  And I knew people who worked for the railroad, and I was thankful that they had jobs.

These green freight cars remind me that the March theme for City Daily Photo is "Green."

As you can see, they are stacked two-high, and they are the same containers that cross the ocean on gigantic cargo ships and are unloaded by cranes. Trucks hook onto them and they become the trailers on tractor-trailers. Very practical!

This particular train did something odd. It stopped and sat still for a while, and then backed up, clearing the road so the gates could go up and we could pass. I guess it had to wait for the track to clear farther ahead and the engineer did not want to block traffic. I am thankful for that! 

Thankful Thursday.
Can you see the horse logo of Norfolk Southern?

Today's final picture was taken within earshot of the railroad, from Rockland Park.

Sharing with Fences around the World.

February 27, 2019

February 26, 2019

More Views of the Hexagon House

Readers were intrigued by this house when I posted it last week. Someone wanted to see it from different angles so when I found myself in Winchester on Sunday, I parked on Hawthorne Drive and walked around.

The hexagon is a rare shape for a house, even more so than an octagon. I imagine placing furniture in the odd-shaped rooms can be a challenge.

The building is occasionally open to the public for events, so perhaps I'll visit it some day. It dates to 1873 and has a central chimney. The architect was Brice Leatherman.
Sharing with Through My Lens and Tuesday Treasures

Bonus Pond, Maurertown.

Wordless Wednesday on Tuesday

February 25, 2019

Art and Elvis

The Good: Shenandoah Valley Pastorale graces a wall above a stairway in an arts center in Berryville. The artist is Bill Whiting. 
Monday Murals.
The Random: The reason we went there was to see an exhibit of art quilts inspired by the music of Elvis Presley. (Yes, it's a real thing – and it's wonderful!)

Mosaic Monday.
The Fun: Elvis and me.
At the Barns of Rose Hill, Berryville, VA.

February 24, 2019

Driving Near Middletown on Friday

By Friday afternoon, much of the snow had melted. I dropped off our recycling and then explored a couple of back roads before going to the grocery. At times I could pull over enough to take a picture of a farm, but sometimes the car was barely off the road so I snapped a picture quickly, not having enough space to get out of the car safely. Thus my mirror shows up here, but I'm going to call it a feature and be done with it! 

A church parking lot offers a safe place to pull off the road. This is Green Valley Baptist Church on Chapel Road near Middletown. This picture had very little color so I converted it to black and white. 

Inspired Sunday and Black and White Weekend.
I left the side view in color although it is still mostly in shades of gray. The church was established in 1986 and built on the foundation of an older church. They reused some beams that were still solid.

I have a couple more photos to share with the Barn Collective and then one shot taken from a historic cemetery.

When I saw a sign to Mt. Carmel Cemetery, I turned in because it has a nice view of the Massanutten Range. The cemetery is a Civil War site from the Battle of Cedar Creek.

February 23, 2019

My Showy Pileated Friend

I love pileated woodpeckers! They are large and have a bright red crest. I don't see them as often as I'd like, so I was delighted when I looked out the window and saw a flash of red in the trees.

Pileated means "capped." These birds are known for drilling holes in trees, and sometimes in wood siding. I forgive them because they are magnificent. 

This one flew out of the shade to the deck railing and then to a suet feeder.

I think this one is a female because the male has a red stripe along his cheek, basically over the black one that extends back from the beak.

I need to get some more of the cheap suet that she likes. I put it in that feeder because I didn't find any woodpecker blocks when I was shopping.

February 22, 2019

Post #6633.

1. Today's is George Washington's real birthday, and here are some flowers I saw in front of his office in Winchester. They are part of a wreath placed in honor of Presidents Day.

Floral Friday and Friday Bliss.
2. Not far from Winchester is Blandy Experimental Farm, which I have shown numerous times on this blog. It's scenic even in winter.

Skywatch and Weekend Reflections.
3. I went to a meeting this week at the Friends of the North Fork to hear an update on the new state park coming to Woodstock. The opening keeps moving farther into the future because of weather-related construction delays. We just had the wettest year on record, so crews were not able to tear down the old buildings on schedule. The property has been a farm and a summer camp, and there were many unrepairable buildings, like the one seen here. I photographed it last year; I think it is gone now.

4. There are two roads leading to the new park, but they both pass over low-water bridges. We had over 20 days last year when the bridges were closed due to high water. This may be a record, but it made construction impossible.

5. I scanned in some photos from 1998. This one shows a meal at Larry's house near Germantown. This was when my parents were still living and we see them across the table, along with Marie.

February 21, 2019

In the Fair City of Winchester

Little Things Thursday and Fences.
The Hexagon House was completed in 1873. It is owned by the nearby Museum of the Shenandoah Valley.

Winchester features a walking mall which is popular for public gatherings. It has a number of restaurants and shops.

The stone steps and little building attracted me. I believe this is privately owned.

The final image is near Shenandoah University. I was running some errands in Winchester one afternoon and saw that the sunset was going to be pretty. Where to get a good view? Oh, a friend had recently taken a picture of the duck pond at dusk, so that seemed like a good place to try. Yep!

I'll take my bow and sign off now.

February 19, 2019

A Stop in Stanardsville

Last week I showed you the chimney-style memorial in Criglersville, Virginia. On the day I took those pictures, I decided to continue south a little way to Stanardsville where there was another memorial.

It's been years since I've been in downtown Stanardsville because there is a bypass for Route 33. The town is actually cute and has barn quilts on many buildings.

I located the Blue Ridge Heritage Memorial near the Greene County Administration Building. It is built in the same style as the other memorials honoring the people who had to leave their homes when Shenandoah National Park was built.

On a plaque are surnames of families who owned mountain land but had to leave. The state of Virginia paid them for their property and helped them relocate.

Here are a few of the names: Adams, Armentrout, Baugher, Breedon, Burke, Collier, Comer, Conley, Davis, Dean, Delaney, Frazier, Funkhouser, Haney, Hensley, Hinkle, Jarrell, Marshall, McDaniel, Reynolds, Samuels, Shaver, Shifflett, Taylor, White.

There are books on the history of the park that provide stories about these residents, and there is also an exhibit at Big Meadows Visitor Center along Skyline Drive.

Nightfall at Sheetz

Wordless Wednesday on Tuesday.

February 18, 2019

Presidents Day Random-osity

The Good: For Presidents Day, I took a picture of a statue of George Washington. This is young George, working as a surveyor. Washington surveyed much of Virginia north of the Rappahannock River and across the Blue Ridge.  A plaque states that "In March of 1748, George Washington, at age sixteen, arrived in Winchester, then called Frederick Town. During the next four years, he worked as a surveyor throughout the colonial Virginia frontier."

This statue is next to Washington's Office in Winchester.

The Random: A fast food restaurant near Boyce was recently remodeled. On the wall is a mural of the Burwell-Morgan Mill in nearby Millwood.

I've visited the mill a number of times.

The Fun: Squirrels are always stealing bird seed. I spotted this one in the supermarket and moved him just a little bit to reveal his mischievous nature. (I put him back after I took the picture.)

February 17, 2019

Church, Barns, Fences, Shadows

Near Stephens City, Virginia.
Linkups: Shadow Shot, InSpired Sunday, Barns, and Fences.
 This is Friendship Chapel and it dates to about 1830.  It sits on the corner of Double Church Road and Grim Road, not far from another charming church

This is in a rural area that appears threatened by spreading housing developments, but for now there are still some country homes and farms.