Book Review
The House on Hathaway Road
The Henkalines

The House on Hathaway Road coverNot only did I graduate from high school smack dab in in the middle of the ’60s, it was smack dab in the middle of the Henkalines, too. There were four of them; a girl and three boys. The girl was a few years older than the boys. The oldest boy graduated a year before me and the next a year after. Though I was most familiar with the two boys closest to me in age, I knew them all. It was a small school in a small town in rural Ohio. Everybody knew everybody.

All four siblings contributed to the book. Jack, the guy just a year behind me, got things started in the 1990s by recording remembered stories on his laptop during idle time on business trips. The idea was to provide some personal history to his own children. This was a low priority and sometimes forgotten task until the death of a friend gave Jack a nudge. The friend had long maintained a journal and his widow told Jack how much that helped her and the children deal with the loss. It prompted Jack to return to his recording. In time, the brothers and sister became involved in filling in some blanks and recording their own stories and ultimately producing The House on Hathaway Road.

After introducing their parents and the house they grew up in, each of the four “kids” provides a chapter. Chapters on the final days of the parents and on the next generation follow. A member of that next generation died in an automobile accident in 2007 and there is a chapter dedicated to her. A Henkaline family tree concludes the book.

Jack’s original goal, to pass on some history to the next generation, is clearly accomplished and then some. There are certainly items in the book that will be of little interest for non-Henkalines but there are many more that provide glimpses of the 1950s and ’60s that almost anyone can enjoy. There are some truly universal memories like 24 cent gas and gathering in front of the TV to watch whatever Dad wanted to watch. The Henkalines even include a chapter titled “Nostalgia” with pictures of things that most people of a certain age will remember. Things like skate keys, TV test patterns, and Burma Shave signs. Other memories might not be exactly universal unless you lived in “the country” in the Midwest. In that case, things like chicks in the mail, laundry day with a wringer washer and “on line” drying, party line telephones, and all-purpose aprons might sound familiar.

One of the stories that Jerry (the guy a year ahead of me) tells might be simply entertaining to most readers but for anyone attending Ansonia High School in 1963 it’s a major highlight on the memory reel. Jerry was a starting tackle on the team that broke a 38 game losing streak. I recall a story that newscasters Huntley and Brinkley, who ended most programs with something lighthearted, used our first victory since 1958 as that night’s closer. I’ve never found any documentation for that but Jerry’s reporting of an uncle in Oregon who first heard the news on radio indicates there was some national coverage and that the Huntley-Brinkley story could possibly be true. I’ve always considered my time at AHS to have been excellent preparation for being a Bengals’ fan.

The book’s dust cover speculates that readers might find themselves saying, “That story reminds me of what happened to me growing up.” That’s likely true of almost any member of my generation regardless of where that growing up occurred and absolutely true for those of us who grew up within a few miles of Hathaway Road. Those in other generations will still enjoy the book but they might get jealous.

The House on Hathaway Road: Where Memories Began, The Henkalines, Aventine Press, February 18, 2013, hardcover, 9 x 6 inches, 286 pages, ISBN 978-1593308124

Also available on eBay.

We Have Ways of Making You Talk

Ohio Lincoln Highway League West meetingWhen the Lincoln Highway Association was reborn in 1992, Ohio’s organization took the form of three chapters operating as a “league”. However, until late last year, that was on paper only. In October, a West chapter was formed to join the existing East and Central chapters and Larry Webb was elected its first president. Larry knows my cousin who lives in Van Wert and one day she mentioned my recently published book to him as something he might be interested in. He ordered his own copy and gave me a call after he’d looked it over a bit. He asked if I was making presentations related to the book and I answered, “No, but I probably should be.” He then offered up the recently formed chapter as “guinea pigs” at their next meeting on February 18. Although I put him off for a bit, I eventually agreed and found myself asking, in a conversation with myself, “Just what have you gotten us into now, Bunkie?”

During my working days, I had spoken to a few small groups but was never very comfortable with it and it was a long time ago. The book in question is By Mopar to the Golden Gate which tells of a cross country drive on the Lincoln Highway which is why a Lincoln Highway Association group was interested. It contains a lot of photos and I had taken many more on the trip so that’s where my planning headed. A few pictures would help a bunch. Not only would each one reduce my speaking requirement by a thousand words and give the audience something to look at, they could be my notes. With a little time to refresh myself on dates and such, I could rattle on about some pictures I’d taken without a teleprompter or learning a lot of new stuff.

I started browsing through my pictures and, at the same time, started looking for a way to present them. Larry had told me a projector and screen would be available that I could (hopefully) run from my laptop. I looked at a few slide show programs and ended up settling on OpenOffice Impress, a free PowerPoint-like application. It allowed me to add information (reminders) to photos as well as create non-photo slides to provide other information.

I made a pass through the photos picking out candidates. I reduced this rather large list to about 125 photos that I thought might be good for some presentation then to about 50 that I thought would be good for this presentation. I recorded myself going through things a couple of times to get a handle on the length and to determine where my memory was going to need more help than a photograph provided. I made up a couple of slides with some general statistics and other items. I decided I was as ready as I was going to get.

When I’m on the road, leaving a motel is often a slapdash sort of thing. Half the time I’m packing up the power supply while my computer is doing its shutdown on batteries. As I got ready to leave home on the day of the presentation, I took no short cuts and made sure everything shutdown in the right sequence. I drove to Van Wert and, as soon as Larry arrived, carried my computer in and turned it on. “Gotcha!”, it said. Or something along those lines that meant things are not right and I’m going to run a disk check. It ran the check, it fixed a thing or two, and it completed powering up. All was well and any risk of me becoming too relaxed during the evening was effectively eliminated.

Main Street Van Wert adAll really was well. Not only did the computer function properly, so too, within limits, did I. The audience of approximately twenty-five was just about perfect. They knew enough about the Lincoln Highway to be interested but not enough to be bored. There was even applause, which is something I’m not at all familiar with, at the end and their interest was further demonstrated through several very good questions. It remains to be seen whether I do any more presentation of this sort but I survived this one and even enjoyed it. For me, the primary purpose was to get some experience and not to sell books but I did sell some. Four copies were sold and a few more placed on consignment with the canal museum in Delphos. Add to that the fact that I arrived in Van Wert early enough to take advantage of a $1 pie sale at Balyeats (apple) and that I spent the night and chattered away the next morning with friends who came to the presentation and I count this as a darned good trip.

Book Review
Twelve Years a Slave
Solomon Northup

Twelve Years a Slave coverLike most of the world, I had no idea this book even existed before the movie about the New Yorker kidnapped into slavery came out. When I saw the movie, I was moderately less impressed than some but I left the theater with two basic questions: was the book an actual memoir and how close did the movie track it? As I poked around the internet, I encountered no suspicion that either Solomon Northup or the story he told were fiction which made the answer to the first question “yes”. I then located a free PDF copy of the book and set out to answer the second question myself. I had my doubts as I read the book’s early pages but it became apparent before too long that that answer was “very close”.

The real Solomon Northup did not have quite the wealth and social rank that the movie Solomon Northup seems to have. My guess is that’s to make his enslavement more shocking and I have no problem with that. Quite a few pages of print are used to establish that Northup had little reason to fear for his safety. On film, fancy clothes and strolls in the park do that more quickly. There are a few cases of the movie combining multiple incidents into a single event or more than one person into a single character but that’s a fairly common practice and does no damage to the gist of the story. I might not be crazy about the too long shots of unmoving faces or moss draped trees but I have to say the movie is fairly well done and more than fairly accurate.

But, just as the book didn’t become a movie without compromise, neither did Northup’s story get to the page completely pure. The book is one of those “as told to” things. In this case, the printed story is as told to and edited by David Wilson. The prose at times becomes more flowery and stilted than how I imagine Northup actually communicated his tale but there is nothing at all wrong with that. That’s why professional writers are employed in situations such as this. Wilson’s job was to make the story readable and attractive. Did he also alter or embellish things? I can’t really say, of course, but my sense is that he did little or none of the former but did slip in some amount of the latter. I suppose that’s to be expected since his job also involved making the book successful. That it was; selling 30,000 copies and being considered a best-seller in its day.

About halfway through the book, I thought of posting a review of it. Nothing too serious, as the book was 161 years old, but something as sort of a novelty in the midst of all the bustle around the movie. Then, about three-quarters of the way through, I decided there was something else I needed to do first.

Twelve Years a Slave was published less than a year after Uncle Tom’s Cabin, originally a serial, was published as a book. Northup dedicated it to Harriet Beecher Stowe. Thinking that I had not read Uncle Tom’s Cabin since high-school, I decided that reading it now was a good idea so that I might compare the two. So I found a free PDF of Stowe’s book and soon after I started reading it came to the realization that I had not just gone since high-school without reading the book. I may have read some chopped down “Cliff’s Notes” style version and I’ve seen skits and other portrayals but it was soon obvious to me that I had never read the full original novel. I found myself very impressed with Stowe’s writing as well as her story. I found her story quite similar to Northup’s or at least to Wilson’s recording of it. By the time I finished Uncle Tom’s Cabin and got ready to do this review, I was starting to think that Wilson might have taken nearly as much from Stowe as he did from Northup. I was, however, very wrong.

I saw the movie in early December and searched out the free PDF shortly thereafter. Then as now, the search phrase “12 years a slave” yields a list of hits that almost all reference the 2013 movie one way or another. It takes adding “book”  or some other qualifier to get much else. I must have done something like that in December — I did find that PDF somehow — but now there seems to be more. I’m sure there are things that I simply didn’t notice before but it’s also true that there are new things. One example is a USA Today article that is just a few days old and talks about the recent growth of interest in the original writing that I felt but could not quantify.

One of the things I became aware of only after reading both Twelve Years a Slave and Uncle Tom’s Cabin is the work that Dr. Sue Eakin and Dr Joseph Logsdon did in verifying events in Northup’s narrative. I shelled out 99 cents for an electronic version of the recently published “enhanced” version of Twelve Years a Slave that includes some of their findings and more. I did not reread Northup’s story or even all of the notes but just skimming over them made it evident that the story was firmly anchored in reality. Another real world connection popped up in the search list. An article here tells of the diary of a Union captain who reached the plantation from which Northup was rescued some ten years after that event.

Even with the help of a professional, Twelve Years a Slave is not as well written or easy to read as Uncle Tom’s Cabin but the stories they tell are frighteningly similiar. Maybe the totally factual basis of the one compensates for the skill of the other (and neither is poorly written). I’m actually somewhat glad that I was mistaken in believing I had read Stowe’s novel decades ago because reading these two back to back made quite an impression on me. The movie is really good and deserving of awards and praise. I’ll even offer my own praise for it being a whole lot truer to the book than many I’ve seen. But, as is very often the case for some of us, the book is better.

Twelve Years a Slave, Solomon Northup through David Wilson, Derby & Miller, 1853, hardcover, 5 x 7.5 inches, 336 pages

My Wheels – Chapter 9
Honda 65

Honda 65The Honda 65 occupied, but didn’t really fill, the space between the ultra-popular 50 and the more powerful 90. It just wasn’t as cool as either of those other “groovy little motor bikes” which meant it wasn’t as desirable or pricey. And that, of course, is the reason I could own one. I don’t recall how I came by the Honda or how much I paid but it couldn’t have been much. I didn’t have much. I acquired it at roughly the same time as the Austin-Healey and had it for a short while after the Healey was gone. While my wife drove the car to work, the two-wheeler was my transportation to and from campus.

This was not a vehicle for long distance travel and I don’t believe I ever had the bike out of the Clifton area. It was involved in no big adventures and the only mildly interesting incident I can recall was the one time I laid it down.

I was heading west on Ludlow in a light rain. As I approached Clifton Avenue, the light changed and I tapped the rear brake. The 65 was much closer to a Schwinn than a Harley so a little slide was not a big thing at all. With the bike leaned to the left, I no doubt had visions of a smooth sideways stop at the intersection when the rear wheel reached the manhole cover. The surface of the cover was kept dry by whatever source of heat was below it and the difference in traction between wet pavement and dry steel is significant. The slide stopped and the Honda immediately went from leaning slightly to its left to laying completely flat on its right. The two of us slid together to the curb. At higher speed, the curb might have made a real impression on my un-helmeted head but there was no damage at all that day. I stopped at the feet of two men standing by the street. I’ve always thought they must have been waiting for a bus but I don’t really know that. They didn’t move but merely leaned forward with their umbrellas and asked if I was alright.

At the time, I’m sure intense embarrassment kept me from laughing but the memory of those faces calmly chatting with the kid who had washed up at their feet will always bring on a smile these days.

My Wheels – Chapter 8 — 1957 Austin Healey

Book Review
How to Visit All 50 States in 12 Trips
Terri Weeks

How to Visit All 50 States in 12 Trips coverI thought of reviewing this ebook when it came out last March but it didn’t happen. There were actually multiple items, including a couple of CDs, that were review candidates about that time which got pushed aside by stuff like preparations for the coming summer. By releasing this second edition, Terri Weeks combines a reminder that I missed posting a review last year along with a second chance.

Terri lives within ten miles of me, does a goodly amount of traveling, and writes a blog about it. Add to that the book she’s co-written called Adventures Around Cincinnati and the travel related lecturing she does around the area and you might think it almost a given that I’ve met her. Not so and what at first might seem odd, might not be at all surprising once you learn that the full title of that book is Adventures Around Cincinnati: A Parent’s Guide to Unique and Memorable Places to Explore with your Kids and that her blog is called Travel 50 States with Kids. I’ve nothing against kids, of course. I did, once upon a time, some traveling with my own and my trip journals include at least one outing with just me and a grandson. But it’s an obvious fact that I seldom travel with anyone and that I travel with kids even seldomer.

But kid-friendly attractions are hardly uninteresting attractions and I’ve been following Weeks’ blog for some time as she describes visits to quite an assortment of them. I did — and continue to — read the blog through its RSS feed but I also have an email subscription. Why email? Because signing up for email is the ticket for getting a free download of How to Visit All 50 States in 12 Trips.

The twelve trips described in the ebook are not just theoretical lines on a map. The routes are practical and mostly proven. They are the routes that the Weeks family has or will follow to taste every state in the union before the youngsters finish high school. Terri Weeks has an engineering background which I’m sure served her well when she set out some years ago to devise a plan to accomplish the family’s travel goals. They are getting close. One change for the second edition is an update of “…eight states and three years to go” to “…six states and two years to go”. If I understand the scoring properly, nine trips are history and three are yet in the future.

Even if you exactly share Weeks’ goal of visiting all 50 states with your offspring before they finish high school, you might not want to do it in exactly twelve trips or exactly the same twelve. In fact, I imagine the chances of someone using this book as a precise blueprint for their own travels are pretty low but I’m confident that’s not what Weeks intended. The twelve trips are her way of making sure her family accomplishes its goal. They provide an obvious way to organize the nice catalog of attractions which is the book’s primary offering and they serve as an example of how the 50 state task can be accomplished.

For Weeks, the goal is not to simply reach each state but to actually visit each one; to experience, where possible, something unique for which a state is known. Things like the Grand Canyon in Arizona, a Mardi Gras museum in Louisiana, the Grand Ole Opry in Tennessee, Crater Lake National Park in Oregon, Yosemite National Park in California, and even the Mall of America in Minnesota.

How to Visit All 50 States in 12 Trips mapThe book is not large, 40 pages, 4.5 KB. There are no detailed directions. There is a general map, like the one at left, for each trip followed by a daily itinerary. Itinerary entries are usually one-liners with any details provided through a web link. Being an ebook, How to Visit All 50 States in 12 Trips can assume some connectivity that paper books can’t. That means web links for many attractions. Sometimes the links lead directly to an attraction’s website and sometimes, for attractions already visited, to a Travel 50 States with Kids blog entry which often contains a link to the attraction’s website along with a report on the family’s visit.

As indicated, identifying various attractions is the ebook’s strong suit. The trip routes and itineraries are also quite useful if only as examples for creating your own. And there is a third subtle value in the the ebook. Both it and the blog behind it serve as gentle reminders that, if there is a long term goal in your life, you will probably need some sort of plan in order to reach it. In the case of getting kids to fifty states before graduation, merely keeping score won’t get it. Having just three or four states to go when the senior year rolls around sounds good unless those states are Maine, Florida, Alaska, and Hawaii.

How to Visit All 50 States in 12 Trips – Second Edition, Terri Weeks, self published, February 2014, ebook, 8.5 x 11 inches, 40 pages, free with email subscription at How to Visit All 50 Atates in 12 Trips

By Mopar to the Golden Gate coverBy coincidence, the first review of my own book, By Mopar to the Golden Gate, appeared yesterday. Written by Ron Warnick at Route 66 News, the very positive in depth review can be read here.

Beer not Weak. Beer Week.

Taps at Zip's CafeOne response to a request to name 212 things that first appeared in 1926 would be Zip’s Cafe and 211* US Highways. One of the routes designated when the US Highway System was adopted was US 50 from which Fifty West Brewing Company gets its name. When Zip’s and Fifty West collaborated on a beer to become the restaurant’s house brew, the name 1926 Amber Ale was chosen as something that had meaning to both. The “official” tapping took place on Thursday, the first day of Cincinnati Beer Week.

This post appears very near the mid-point of Cincinnati Beer Week which, like all good weeks since 1964, is eight days long. Cincinnati Beer Week is immediately followed by, but not connected with, the Cincy Beerfest. The Beerfest is a great place to sample a large number of beers though I personally don’t find big events of that sort nearly as enjoyable as I once did. Fortunately, the appearance of “rotating taps” in a large number of taverns lines up well with my own proclivities and allows me to sample a variety of beers over time from the comfort of a bar stool.

So, while I encourage others to do so, I won’t be attending the Beerfest this year nor, for similar reasons, will I be going to the bigger Beer Week events. At least not during their peak periods. The event that started my Beer Week, the Brewer’s Choice for Charity at Arthur’s Cafe, is a big event that packs the place in the evening but I was there early in the afternoon. Arthur’s was the first (if not only) area bar to switch all of their draft beer taps to local brands. For this event, each of the eight taps pours something from a different brewery and each brewery picks a charity to receive a dollar for each pint sold. The restaurant then matches the amount earned by the top selling brew. I beat the crowd while scoring a buck apiece for Madtree and Blank Slate.

Zip's entrance in snowThen I headed on over to Zip’s and even snapped a photo of the entrance with a fair amount of snow covering the curbside area out front. I feared that the tapping at Zip’s might be something of a frenzy but, even though the place was quite busy, it wasn’t crazy. There was not a big ceremony and the new beer started flowing well before the clock struck 5:00. I suspect the introduction was even less formal at the brewery itself, which had several representatives on hand.

At least one of the Fifty West people used to work at Jackie O’s in Athens, Ohio, and there is still a connection of sorts. On this evening, four of the eight taps at Zip’s were devoted to Jackie O’s products and the other four (in the top picture) to Fifty West. While waiting for the 1926 Amber Ale, I stayed hydrated with a standard Fifty West brew, the Thirty-37 Pale Ale.

Zipburger and 1926 Amber AleFifty West 1926 Amber Ale’26, as I heard one of the brewery guys call it, struck me as a pleasant middle of the road brew that should fill the role of restaurant house beer quite nicely. My own timing was no more precise than the new brew tapping and my glass of 1926 Amber Ale was half gone when my Zipburger arrived. They still still make a lovely pair.

* There are many ways to count the number of “routes” covered by the adoption of a national numbering system on November 11, 1926. 211 is the number of entries in the list provided here by Robert V. Droz.

Feedly Fumble: Two weeks ago, this website switched hosting companies. On the morning of January 26, a blog entry titled “Moving Day” was posted from the old server. Toward the end of the day, when the move was essentially complete, an entry titled “Meet the New Host” was posted from the new server. The actual RSS feed and most accesses behaved as expected with the morning post disappearing to be replaced by the evening post in due time. The Feedly reader, which I use and generally like, has been the exception. To date, it continues to show the early post rather than the later one and no flushing, resubscribing, or incense burning has helped. If you use Feedly and fear there is something you’ve missed, the first blog entry from the new host is here. Feedly has performed just fine with subsequent posts.

Concert Review
Willie Nile
Southgate House Revival

Willie NileWhen Willie Nile‘s American Ride appeared on my road trip oriented radar last spring, I thought his name sounded vaguely familiar but couldn’t really connect it with anything. When I later heard a tune, Vagabond Moon, from his 1980 debut album, it, too, sounded vaguely familiar. I probably did hear both the name and the music thirty years ago but I didn’t hear it enough or pay enough attention for it to stick with me. I’m now realizing that I am certainly the poorer for that and I’m learning that I’m not alone.

I was pretty happy when I first learned that Willie was coming to the Southgate House Revival in Newport, Kentucky. Then, when I found out it would be on Groundhog Day Eve and my plans for the holiday started to form, Willie’s concert got pushed aside. I intended to visit a friend in northern Illinois where another Willie, a groundhog named Woodstock Willie, is the focus of a pretty good party in the town where the movie Groundhog Day was filmed. Then weather forecasts, which turned out to be rather accurate, called for several inches of snow in Illinois and I decided to stay in Ohio which meant I could make the concert and that was a very good thing.

Even after the event was firmly on my agenda, I had no idea that it would compel me to post my first actual concert review. I didn’t have a camera with me and, though I could have tried to grab something with my phone, I did not and resorted to a stock publicity shot to start this post. Fortunately, Kirsten O’Connell shared this photo of the show on Willie’s Facebook page so you can get a glimpse of how things looked.

Thinking I would not be be going, I did no research and had no idea what to expect. I thought it quite possible that it would be a solo show with just Willie and a guitar. Boy, was that ever wrong. Willie took the stage with a topnotch high-powered 4-piece that blew me and the rest of the packed Revival Room away.

There are three performance spaces at SGHR. The Sanctuary is the biggest and there is a stage in the smallish Lounge. The Revival Room is a mid-sized place on the second floor. Yes, SGHR is a re-purposed church; the 1866 Grace Methodist Episcopal Church. How they resisted calling the upstairs venue The Upper Room, I’ll never know. I’ve seen a few shows in the Sanctuary and a couple in the Lounge. This was my first time in the Revival Room and it instantly became my favorite. It held forty-eight folding chairs. There would have been fifty but the middle of five rows was truncated by support posts. Every seat was filled and another thirty or so people stood at the back and along the walls.

The show was riveting from beginning to end. Despite never having seen Willie Nile before and knowing only a few of the songs, I felt right at home. There was a touch of Springsteen and Dylan and Grahm Parker and Lou Reed and Elvis Costello and other rock ‘n’ rollers I can’t exactly name. But it was all Willie Nile. Willie doesn’t bring to mind first tier singer-songwriters because he mimics them but because he is one.

The band was top tier, too. I believe Alex Alexander, who played drums on the American Ride album, has been touring with the group but Larry the Chicago Guy (Sorry, forgot the last name.) is wielding the sticks for a few shows. If that subtracted anything from the performance, it’s hard to imagine what. The group was tight and professional. Matt Hogan’s guitar solos were impressive without being over indulgent and bassist Johnny Pisano got in his own share of fancy licks — and leaps. Hogan and Pisano both appear on American Ride. In addition to looking good and sounding great, it was obvious that all four musicians were enjoying themselves to the max. Nothing impresses me more than an entertainer having fun while delivering quality.

Things mellowed briefly when Willie sat down at an electric piano — after they found the plug — and the band left the stage. The piano is Willie’s first instrument. He performed The Crossing solo then moved onto Love is a Train. One by one, the others returned as the song progressed and before long the train was a rockin’. Apparently a song and a half of mellow is enough for Willie. Other songs I remember were three dedications to musicians the world lost quite recently. Heaven Help The Lonely was dedicated to Phil Everly, One Guitar to Pete Seeger, and a rousing version of Sweet Jane was dedicated to the man who wrote it, Lou Reed. Surprisingly, he did not play American Ride and I did not miss it and I mean that both it not being played and me not missing it were surprises. I don’t mean that I did not notice its absence; I mean that the concert seemed full and complete and satisfying without it.

Early on, Willie let it be known that he thought SGHR was a pretty cool place. He also talked of it being his first time in Kentucky until a fan in the front row reminded him of his 1980 gig opening for The Who in Lexington. Willie smiled at the correction and said he intended to be back again before long. I believe him and I’ll be waiting.

I learned of the song American Ride, first on the radio then in this video, in the week preceding the start of my Lincoln Highway centennial drive. The album had not yet been released but the title song was available as a 99 cent download. I bought the song and had thoughts of it playing as we departed Times Square. I failed at making that happen but, at 7:23 AM on June 22, as we were leaving Manhattan, I did send the following pre-written Tweet:

Leaving New York City with a tank of gas.
Got my bag and my camera, I’m gonna get out fast.

The album was released June 25.

Trip Peek #15
Trip #83
Groundhog Day 2010

Punxsutawney PhilThis picture is from the my 2010 Groundhog Day road trip to see Punxsutawney Phil. I guess this was something of a bucket list item I crossed off on my first February in retirement. On the way, I stopped in Columbus, Ohio, to attend a blues benefit and I worked in some National Road on the way home. In between, I sipped coffee and stamped my feet on Gobbler’s Knob in an effort to stay warm in four degrees while waiting for sunrise. The big moment came, Phil saw his shadow (though I didn’t see mine), and the 10,000+ crowd moaned in unison.

This is the second Trip Pic Peek that I’ve cheated on and did not go with a random selection. The other was Crescent City Christmas that I hand picked for Christmas 2012. When I realized that I would probably be posting something canned this week and that Sunday was actually Groundhog Day, this Trip Pic Peek just seemed right.

Trip Pic Peek # 14 — Trip #31 — OH Lincoln

Trip Pic Peeks are short articles published when my world is too busy or too boring for a current events piece to be completed in time for the Sunday posting. In addition to a photo thumbnail from a completed road trip, each Peek includes a brief description of that photo plus links to the full sized photo and the trip journal it is from.