Posts Tagged ‘Route 66’

You can still find these signs in Arizona on a section of Old Route 66 that attracts driving tourists. — Wikimedia photo

Why does a chicken

Cross the street?

She sees a guy

She’d like to meet.

He uses

Burma Shave

On Old Route 66

When I was about 12, back in the early 1950s, I went on my first road trip. It was a journey from Texas to California with my aunt and uncle who took me along as the babysitter for my 18-month-old cousin. I already had an addicted case of wanderlust from reading about far-away places. This trip just added jet fuel to a passion that still exists today.

While flying thrilled me the first time I was in an airplane – I was in my 30s by then – I quickly realized I would much rather drive places when possible, because there’s lots more to see.

That first road trip, with my uncle barreling down Route 66 — sometimes hitting 100 mph he bragged – in his brand-new Oldsmobile, found me reading Burma Shave signs. You do remember those, don’t you?

Thankfully, at the speed we were traveling, the bright red and white signs were still spaced far enough apart for me to read. Those signs were a great advertising ploy selling shaving cream. And now they provide good memories for this old, wander-lusted broad.

Now here are a few from the past that might bring good memories for some, and maybe even a laugh or two.

Drinking drivers

Enhance their


To highball home

In an ambulance

Burma Shave


“At ease,” she said.

“Maneuvers begin

When you get

Those whiskers

Off your chin

Burma Shave


I use it too

The bald man said

It keeps my face

Just like

My head

Burma Shave


The Monkey took

One look at Jim

And threw the peanuts

Back at him

He needed

Burma Shave

Bean Pat: Miss Pelican’s Perch https://misspelicansperch.wordpress.com/2018/01/10/undulation-old-stoves-lipstick-and-the-new-moon/  This is a good blog for writers. And I, too, am a fan of Natalie Goldberg.

Pat Bean is a Lonely Planet Community Pathfinder. Her book, Travels with Maggie, is now up on Amazon at http://tinyurl.com/y8z7553y  Currently, she is writing a book. tentatively titled Bird Droppings, which is about her late-bloomer birding adventures. You can contact her at patbean@msn.com

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            “I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

If you traveled Route 66, before it was replaced by Interstate 40, you might have seen these rock faces along side the road. The rocks are in Arizona's Painted Desert, which old Route 66 passed through. Interstate 40 bypasses the scenic landscape.  -- Photo by Pat Bean

If you traveled Route 66, before it was replaced by Interstate 40, you might have seen these rock faces alongside the road. The rocks are in Arizona’s Painted Desert, which old Route 66 passed through. Interstate 40 bypasses the scenic landscape. — Photo by Pat Bean

How Do You Travel

I was 13 when I went on my first road trip, an adventure on Route 66 when it was in its prime. My uncle drove his new 1952 Oldsmobile 100 mph across Texas, New Mexico and Arizona into California, my aunt by his side and me in the back seat with my 18-month-old cousin Barbara. I got invited on the trip, my first time out of Texas, to babysit.

I had lunch in a diner on Route 66, just across from this sign, which stands along of the bits and pieces of the old Mother Road that still exists. -- Photo by Pat Bean

I had lunch in a diner on Route 66, just across from this sign, which stands along of the bits and pieces of the old Mother Road that still exists. — Photo by Pat Bean

It was a long, two-day drive there, and two days back, but I was never bored. Nor did I do anything to entertain myself but to stare out the window. Watching the world go by out the window is still what I do when I’m in a car, either as driver or passenger. The passing sights, be they strange, new and scenic or familiar, decaying and nondescript, continually fascinate me. I’m always expecting to see something wonderful.

That wasn’t the case with my children, who read comic books or slept on long drives; or my grandchildren, who watch videos or play games on their phones constantly when they are in the car.

So now I ask myself, is the world different, or kids different. Or does the wanderlust in my soul make me different? How do you travel?

Blog pick of the day. Check it out.

Blog pick of the day. Check it out.

Bean Pat: Best Super Bowl blog of them all http://tinyurl.com/on6kcmb

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 “In times like these, it helps to recall that there have always been times like these.” – Paul Harvey

Now I Know The Rest of the Story

1931 Studebaker President Sedan in Greenfield Village at the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn Michigan. — Flicker Photo by Steve Brown

I don’t know how many of you recall Paul Harvey, a folksy radio personality whose career began in the 1930s and continued into this century. “And now you know the rest of the story,” became his trademark on completing a tale after intermissions for advertising.

Knowing the rest of the story, what goes on behind the scenes, has always captured my wondering interest. I hate it when I’m left hanging, which is exactly how I felt after neither myself nor my readers, could identify the model of car that sits as an icon to Route 66 off Interstate 40.

Now I know, thanks to bloggers Brian and Shannon at: http://everywhereonce.com The two of them are wanderers like me. I’ve accused them of following me around, but then they could say the same of me. It’s quite fun, actually, to read their take on places I’ve also visited.

Time and age have turned this old 1931 Studebaker into an art memorial for Route 66. It sits off Interstate 40 (note semis in background) that replaced the Mother Road. — Photo by Pat Bean

Today, their blog is about Petrified National Forest, which I visited in May. Like me, they mentioned the same glorified clunker that sits in the park as a memorial to Route 66 , which still passes through the forest.

The big difference in the two blogs is that my May 24th post didn’t identify the make and year of the vehicle – and theirs does.

It’s a 1931 Studebaker.

I truly should have known, especially since it was a 1948 Studebaker convertible in which I learned to drive. Of course that model and the rusted remains of the 1931 Presidential Series Studebaker that sits in the Petrified Forest have little in common.

Anyway, Now I know the rest of the story and will sleep better. Perhaps there are other wondering minds out there who will also sleep better now, too.

Bean’s Pat: Colors of the Rainbow http://tinyurl.com/cdw7omj Fantastic photo taken in Yellowstone National Park. It touched my nature-loving soul. Blog pick of the day from a wondering wanderer.

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 “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.” – Dr. Seuss

Flagstaff, Not as I remembered

This cheerful seating area at the Flagstaff KOA reinforced my inclination to simply sit quiet for a while. — Photo by Pat Bean

Flagstaff still remembers Route 66 in all its glory. No crumbling, run-down remains in this elevated city, whose 6,920-foot elevation lets it nestle comfortably among 12,000-foot peaks. Flagstaff – which incidentally got its name from a flagpole made by a scouting party from Boston on July 4, 1876, to celebrate this country’s centennial – even holds an annual festival in September to celebrate the Mother Road.

I observed many signs and buildings as I made my way down the old highway through the town that loudly announced to travelers that Route 66 had passed this way.

Of course I never stop birdwatching. And this raven obligingly posed for a photograph. — Photo by Pat Bean

I had meant to explore some of them, to walk among Route 66 landmarks, hearing Nat King Cole in my head singing Bobby Troup’s “Get Your Kicks on Route 66.”

But I didn’t.

 Flagstaff wasn’t the quiet town I remembered from past visits. Today it seemed like people and traffic were everywhere. After my drive through the town, my canine traveling companion, Pepper, and I took Highway 89 heading north out of town and checked into the Flagstaff KOA.

And there Pepper and I stayed for the rest of the day and the next day, our sightseeing limited to what we could see in the large rustic park and on a short nature trail that we hiked several times a day.

It simply felt like the right thing to do at the time.

Bean’s Pat: http://inaroomofmyown.wordpress.com/  Girls Just Wanna Have Fun – writing! This one’s for the writers among us. 

*This recognition is merely this wandering/wondering old broad’s way of bringing attention to a blog I enjoyed – and thought perhaps my readers might, too. The Pat on the back is presented with no strings attached. June 2, patbean.wordpress.com

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 “For fossils to thrive, certain favorable circumstances are required. First of all, of course, remnants of life have to be there. These then need to be washed over with water as soon as possible, so that the bones are covered with a layer of sediment.” – Richard Leakey

Hard to believe that this creature’s bones are over 200 million years old. — Photo by Pat Bean

The Bones of the Matter

It stands to reason that if conditions are right for ancient trees to be preserved, other things in the landscape will also be preserved.


Flowers weren’t plentiful in the Painted Desert. The landscape wasn’t encouraging for them, which is why this small patch of yellow stood out so dramatically. — Photo by Pat Bean

And of course they were, as evidenced by the dinosaur skeletons on display at the Rainbow Forest Museum, which sadly would be my final stop before exiting Petrified Forest National Park.

As dinosaurs go, well if you compare them to Sue, the Chicago Field Museum’s gigantic T-Rex, the ones that lived in this ancient forest, were on the dinky side.

The dinosaurs found here belong to the Triassic Period, the late dawn of the dinosaurs, according to the park’s fact sheets.

Two more ancient dinosaur skeletons. — Photo by Pat Bean

These human-sized dinosaurs shared the landscape, which back them was dominated by a huge river running through it, with phytosaurs and rauisuchians, words that sent me running for my dictionary. Crocodile-like is the best definition I could come up with.

Triassic, another word that left me wondering, refers to the period on earth that existed 200 to 250 million years ago.

Now, just as the age of dinosaurs had come and gone, it was time for me to leave the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest and continue traveling down the road. Flagstaff was awaiting me.

Bean’s Pat: Wistfully Wandering http://wistfullywandering.wordpress.comTake an armchair hike in Grand Teton National Park. I can’t believe I’ve missed this one.  

*This recognition is merely this wandering/wondering old broad’s way of bringing attention to a blog I enjoyed – and thought perhaps my readers might, too. The Pat on the back is presented with no strings attached. May 25, patbean.wordpress.com


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 “Life is all about timing … the unreachable becomes reachable. The unavailable becomes available, the unattainable, attainable. Have the patience, wait it out. It’s all about timing.” Stacey Charter.

It’s pretty easy to see why this area of Petrified National Park is called the Tepees. — Photo by Pat Bean

Tepees and Grinning Old Men

But can you see the two grinning old men that I see in these rock formations? — Photo by Pat Bean

Having the time to dawdle as I travel, time to let my imagination run wild, time to stop just to see a dandelion’s fine seeds blow in the wind, to watch a cloud dragon turn into a mouse or a red-tailed hawk circle above is precious.

While I didn’t always keep my nose to the grindstone, the time I could let my mind wander in wonder in my younger years was always way too short. That is not the case these days. And each day I awake with gratitude in my heart for every unrushed second allowed me to on this beautiful planet.

Which is why this blog is still a couple of weeks behind my reality. I don’t want to rush you through the landscape either.

I want to share fully the unhurried day  day I spent in Arizona’s Painted Desert lands, espcially for those who told me they had passed this way but  didn’t have time to linger.

And these reminded me of pawns on a chess board, and then I immediately thought of the chess game in the first Harry Potter book. Perhaps you see something different? I’d love to know what. — Photo by Pat Bean

I hope you enjoy lingering and dawdling with me – and my odd thoughts. 










Bean’s Pat: A Small Press Life :  http://tinyurl.com/bpnf80c Surfin’ Bird – this one’s for Agatha Christie fans. As one myself, it tickled my funny bone to see this early photo of the Grand Dame of who-done-its. 

*This recognition is merely this wandering/wondering old broad’s way of bringing attention to a blog I enjoyed – and thought perhaps my readers might, too. The Pat on the back is presented with no strings attached. May 28, patbean.wordpress.com

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“When once the itch of literature comes over a man, nothing can cure it but the scratching of a pen. But if you have not a pen, I suppose you must scratch any way you can.” Samuel Lover, “Handy Andy,” 1842

Marker depicting some of the petroglyphs that can be seen below the cliff from the viewing platform. — Photo by Pat Bean

Newspaper Rock

The newspaper I found as I continued my travels on old Route 66 through the Petrified Forest National Park was 650 to 2000 years old. And it wasn’t written on paper pages.

Newspaper Rock, a National Historic Landmark. — Photo by Pat Bean

It was scratched in desert varnish on large boulders. And I couldn’t understand it. Neither can the experts.

Actually, in today’s age we would probably call it graffiti.

Were the petroglyphs carved into the rock by wise men among the Puerco River Valley Indian farmers who lived in the area?

 Or were they done by bored Indian teenagers wanting to leave their mark on something?

Up close details — Photo by Pat Bean

As usual, the landscape I’m wandering through has me wondering again.

I love it.

“To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science.: – Albert Einstein

Bean’s Pat: Everyday Sunshine: Get Close http://tinyurl.com/73enmyg I dare you to look into these birds’ eyes – even if you’re not an avid birdwatcher like me, I think you will be amazed. 

*This recognition is merely this  wandering/wondering old broad’s way of bringing attention to a blog I enjoyed – and thought perhaps my readers might, too. The Pat on the back is presented with no strings attached.  May 25, patbean.wordpress.com


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 “We all have our time machines. Some take us back, they’re called memories. Some take us forward, they’re called dreams.” — Jeremy Irons


This old junker is part of the Route 66 Memorial located in the Petrified Forest National Park. Note the passing semi on Interstate 40 in the background. — Photo by Pat Bean

You Can’t Get There From Here

As I continued on the park road after leaving the restored Painted Desert Inn and the mystery of the missing 200 million years’ unconformity, I found myself back at Interstate 40, but with no access to it.

This wandering old broad wonders how many of my readers traveled this road in its heydays. — Photo by Pat Bean

Located in sight of the freeway’s roaring traffic of semis and automobiles with occupants in a rush to get some place, I came upon a rusted, wheel-less relic of a different age. Like the A-Dome in Hiroshima, the only building remaining after the city’s bombing, this junker was a reminder of what once was.

Route 66 lives on only in memories, and bits and pieces of a route that truly takes one nowhere these days.

This tickled my funny-bone. — Photo by Pat Bean

I didn’t have the same degree of sadness in my heart as the day I stood before the A-Dome in Japan, but I wasn’t jumping up and down for joy either. Route 66 is a part of my past, a road that took this Texas flat-lander to magical places where there were mountains when I was only 14.

But then I thought of all the many places that today’s highways have taken me in my life. In the eight years that I have been a full-time RV-er, I’ve traveled this beautiful country called America from sea to shining sea. And more than once.

With this in mind, I gave a second look to this Route 66 memorial standing in front of me. And I laughed at the absurdity of encasing the front section of an automobile in cement. And this wasn’t the first such one I had seen. There had been similar encased old cars in the Albuquerque aquarium I visited, and in the Auto Museum in Santa Rosa.

Yup! Route 66 may be gone, but it certainly isn’t forgotten.

Bean’s Pat: Egret and Ibis http://tinyurl.com/cwefngs My kind of  poetry.

*This award is simply this wandering/wondering old broad’s way of bringing attention to a blog I enjoyed – and thought perhaps my readers might, too.

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 “Read, every day something no one else is reading. Think, every day, something no one else is thinking. Do, every day, something no one else would be silly enough to do. It is bad for the mind to continually be part of unanimity.” – Christopher Morley

200 million years are missing from this landscape. — Photo by Pat Bean

Unconformity Along Route 66

It’s amazing how much you can learn from stopping to read roadside markers. I rarely pass one by, usually only because it’s on the wrong sign of a busy highway, and I value my life more than my curiosity.

It’s amazing what one can learn from roadside markers. — Photo by Pat Bean

That was no problem during my recent loop through the Petrified Forest National Park, where I’m not sure I even saw a dozen other cars.

The educational marker shown here notes that the basalt cap on the top layer of the cliffs was deposited five to eight million years ago. The lower valley layer, however, was deposited about 225 million years ago. What happened to the 200 million years in between?

The scientist have only guesses.

During the 1990s, I saw similar unconformities in the landscape in the Grand Canyon, when I rafted the Colorado River through it. There was a fun discussion around the campfire later that night about the missing landscape.

But just like the scientists, we rafters could only speculate. Meanwhile, this wandering old broad is left in her familiar state of wondering.

Bean’s Pat: Don’t Follow the Lights http://tinyurl.com/7avfh7v I’ve gotta visit Marfa, Texas – so I can wonder some more.

*This award is this wandering/wondering old broad’s way of bringing attention to a blog I enjoyed – and thought perhaps my readers might, too.

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 “I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” – Rosalia de Castro

Painted Desert Inn

Painted Desert Inn, Petrified Forest National Park. — Photo by Pat Bean

A National Historic Landmark, the Painted Desert Inn was once a thriving roadside stop for Route 66 travelers.

Restored ceiling tiles beneath which diners once ate. — Photo by Pat Bean

It went belly up, Like so many other attractions along the Mother Road, when Interstate 40 replaced Route 66 and bypassed the 25-mile loop through the park.

But where so many of the other relics of the past stand sagging and crumbling, the park has restored the inn to all its former glory.

But without the bustle of a busy lunch crowd, or travelers who might pay to spend the night, the inn felt sad and forlorn.

With only myself, the inn (now a musuem) caretaker and another couple, the place felt ghostly as I wondered through it, trying to imagine it in its heydays.

I didn’t stay long, but rejoined my canine traveling, Pepper, in my RV, so we could continue enjoying the scenery.  

Bean’s Pat: You Are My Collected http://rtewrite.wordpress.com/2012/05/22/you-are-my-collected/ Ditto what Harper said about my own followers. You are appreciated.

*The Pat is simply this wandering/wondering old broad’s way of bringing attention to a blog I enjoyed – and thought perhaps the readers of this blog might, too. It’s given with no strings attatched.

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