Recently while doing computer maintenance work I came upon photo captures from the month of April. I chuckled to myself about the decision made to become adventurous that bright but semi-sunny day. Even though the black Cannondale bicycle had a flat tire from last Fall hanging from its rim, determination drove me to acquire a Skill saw. This tool was needed to complete a small project that consisted of sawing down a collection of wooden pallets. In order to achieve the desired aged quality look, the pallets weathered for two years and were now primed to be sanded and stained. With my high-tech looking black shopping cart with red rimmed wheels in tow, I decided to take to the highway. Unfortunately, this particular shopping cart had to be manufactured in China and for people with short arms. The cart handle was too short and it was necessary to utilize a homemade bright yellow hand knitted scarf to extend the length and act as a means to pulling the cart up from dragging onto the ground.
The scrap metal yard was on the way to the big box strip mall. I never visited this type of facility before and wanted to check out their inventory for creative applications. Only in late sixties mob movies that appeared on television was it possible for me to view mountains of heavy metal. Portrayed victims related to a crime were usually rubbed out, carted away by truck and buried in a yard. Very uninviting, a dangerous type of operation but right up my alley for today’s excursion! At the entrance to this yard was a worn out building. No pedestrian walkway could be seen so I had to walk as if driving into this facility. Warning signs and bright yellow caution painted strips decorated the entry. A row of sharp metal prongs poked up out of the road at the gate. Undoubtedly designed to inflict a puncture into a tire when a vehicle is backing up. So once a vehicle pulls up there is no way to move but forward. I approached one door and tried to enter but it would not budge. A sign to the right directed me to enter at the back and this was the office location. I parked the black shopping cart and eagerly bounced up the steps to enter the office. Behind an antiquated bulky wooden desk sat a cheerful woman. She was busy sorting out paperwork that was organized on the desk-top. The scene was the total opposite of what I concocted in my mind or expected. Only the office props matched my vision of the ideal scrap yard scene. The office manager was delighted to see me and moved towards the door to proceed with a tour of the yard. I inquired about corrugated metal sheets, sinks, and anything else that architecturally could enhance my tiny house build. “Tony would know where those items would be so let’s ask him”, she said. Loud rumbling could be heard from the back of the yard and Tony was found perched on a huge power dozer that pushed and crushed mounds of heavy metal into a mountainous pile. Tony was bulging with muscles and also possessed the manly tools needed to maintain a yard. He kept the metal piles neat and orderly and one could see how Tony took pride in managing his work. We were both told where to look and the price of the panels. Throughout my tour I found some interesting objects and was given permission to take some captures.
Upon my journey I passed a billboard sign, bus stop, garden shop, barber store, military advertisement. and nature. The route was busy with daily traffic and during this walking field trip discovered that walkways, sidewalks do end and start-up again in precarious locations.
I found myself hoisting the cart over guard rails and walking onto narrow paths. At one point there was nowhere to walk but through a trailer park access road. I passed Rockefeller’s International Trade Zone, where paths were manicured and decorated with handsome landscaping. People that were driving vehicles must have wondered what this woman was doing carting a shopping cart, after-all no one walks or ever uses these park like paths that decorates the Trade Zone. Island hopping was also a skill developed throughout this trip and perhaps should be added to the resume.
Why do the powers that be construct big box centers on long winding mini highways up a major hill? The average bicyclist would be walking the bicycle up this hill. Upon reaching the shopping zone, Applebee’s beckoned me to stop and take lunch but I proceeded to Pet Smart, TJ MAX and then Lowes. My shopping cart filled up fast and the cashier at Lowes was helpful in organizing the Skill saw box to fit on the bottom of the cart with my other purchases on top. Exhausted, hungry and in need of refueling my system I found myself back at Applebees where I ordered a chicken, mashed potato dinner. The sunny day was becoming slightly rainy and evident that the return trip would be a trek with additional cart weight.
Traffic increases after work and there had to be a short cut or safer way and remembered one by the Trade Zone. It was a bike path that stretched through wildlife and a residential neighborhood and may be safer but longer. I really could not afford making a wrong turn by foot but decided to venture forward with this path. The bicycle path was picturesque and the lightly falling raindrops highlighted foliage. Time went on and many miles too. My legs were becoming heavy and tired. Evening was going to set in and I became worried with the thought of being in the predicament of camping in the woods for the night. Now that would be a nightmare. At the intersection I noticed a familiar sight – the entrance to the nature trail. This could be another way to travel but at this hour not an option. Black bears roam these lands and crossing their territory in the dark would be too dangerous. Upon arriving at an intersection a woman in a car was making a left hand turn towards the shopping zone. I waved her down to stop and politely inquired about finding the major route. She confirmed the correct direction to take but soon discovered that the remainder of this walk was overwhelming and a challenge.