Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A Drive Through the Countryside

"South on Route 620 for four miles" off Route 58 in Woodlawn. So stated our guide book in its driving instructions to the Crooked Creek Wildlife Management Area. Violating my own internal guide that stated "avoid routes in the 600s," I turned onto Route 620. For the first two miles, the road was winding, but, more importantly, it seemed to be narrowing. At the two mile mark, the paved road became a gravel road--a one-lane gravel road with no shoulders. After traveling about 50 yards and still not being able to see around a bend in the road . . . , I turned around and retraced our route even more convinced of my internal guide's accuracy.

We then took a drive through the countryside on Route 221 to Floyd. I made it a point to look for driveways to pull into when coming upon an interesting scene. Several times we've passed driveways that seemed to go up or down at steep angles and were one lane wide and winding. This driveway, while not as obscured from view as most, is a pretty good example of steepness. I hope the photo can convey that.

I don't know if I was being greeted or warned by the two observers as I was taking the photo above, but I assume it was the former because they soon returned to their routine for the afternoon.

As I drove on, there were many scenic vistas but no spots to park. Then we came upon the scene below and a narrow driveway. As I got out of the truck for the photo, there was a truck on the highway with its turn signal on. I had pulled into a driveway right in front of the homeowner. After I drove forward, I quickly walked to the people in the truck and began apologizing for blocking their entrance. I explained what I wanted to do and requested permission to take a couple of photos before leaving. Fortunately, because of my apology or my positive comments about the view or because we both drove trucks or because (and more likely) they understood my situation and wanted to be helpful, they gave me the "go ahead" on taking some pictures. I hurriedly composed the shot and drove on.

We headed to Floyd, VA, the town with the only traffic light in the whole county. The stores in the small town have been restored and maintained, and the downtown is thriving.

We stopped in the Floyd Country Store for an afternoon black raspberry cobbler and ice cream. We noticed the clothing pictured here hanging on the wall and wondered what could have happened to their last inhabitants.

References to "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" were quietly made as we exited.

No comments: