Monday, December 5, 2011

Touring the back roads again with PF...

It's been a good day here out on the flatlands. My day started out with me driving straight north on the 4 lane highway for a couple of hours and then I was lucky enough to have several hours on the roads less traveled. County blacktops and at least 25 miles of gravel roads were my view as I made a big loop through the rural landscape. Near the town of Courtland, KS I saw a large flock of western Ramboillet ewes that were feeding on leftover corn stalks. These are brought in each year from Montana area just for the purpose of eating these stalks and will have lambs in the early spring. Most will have twins. I once bought a couple hundred of them myself at Courtland many moons ago and it was a good experience. They are bred for producing fine wool.
I drove straight north on a gravel road about 10 or 12 miles and then I saw a pen of bulls eating from a bunk. They looked kinda lonely with no females around. Most were black Angus but I liked the looks of this purebred horned Hereford bull who was nice enough to pose for me....
This was the view from the driver's seat of my work truck.
By now it was noon or so and I was very close to the Nebraska state line and traveling in a westward direction. All of a sudden I saw some Kansas polar bears.......Charolais cows eating corn stalks. Almost didn't even see them as they blended into the landscape.

By now you get the idea...cold, gloomy, and very windy-------
Now turning south I soon passed thru the tiny town of Weber, KS and stopped to take a photo of the abandoned gas station that somehow looked better in the white snow.
It took at least another 30 minutes or so and then I arrived at Formoso, KS which is not a ghost town but is well on the way. I saw this old 35 or 36 Chevy truck beside an abandoned old house and though it looked cool.
I drove a couple blocks and parked my truck along an empty street and took my mandatory 30 minute lunch break as I listened to the political speak on talk radio which is my daily companion. While there I took this photo of an old delivery step van on a Ford Chassis. It looked so good framed in white.
After seeing a customer in that town, I drove south down yet more gravel roads where the snow was becoming thinner and I would soon be out of it altogether. But not before seeing this beautiful old dairy barn that is still in good shape.

A few more miles brought me to the town of Randall. I found not one but 2 old gas stations waiting for me to preserve their images before time and weather take them away....forever. I found it interesting that one had been fancy and one had been plain. I wondered if the men who owned them were like that as well. Which one likely did more business? Or had cheaper gas? I guess I will never know but it was fun to ponder....

The tiny town had a few old downtown building too but only the small bank and post office were open along with the grain storage facility (elevator). The tall building next to the bank had the letters "AFAN" near the top. I assume it is a Fraternal Order or Lodge or secret society of some kind from way back when. These organizations were very popular in the days before television became to our homes.
After doing some business on a farm outside of this town I was back on the county blacktop that zigged and zagged back and forth in a east and south direction. I loved the look of this old abandoned church so I grabbed my camera again.
And just so you know.....there are homes, farms, towns, gas stations and etc. that are NOT abandoned but I am not attracted to those. It's like I make a living keeping humans alive with my pure oxygen and yet I want to stop and look at dead and decaying buildings.......crazy.....

A quick stop at Jamestown, KS yielded an old gas station and an old lumberyard....both long defunct.
After driving the next 20 miles or less to Concordia, KS area I was back on the 4 lane and headed south an hour or so back to Salina and it was getting dark. So there you have it....another day's work in the life of a hot air salesman. Thanks for coming along with me. :-)


  1. thanks for the ride.... we thought you never had winter down south ... maybe just a few days to purify the air.. stronger wind to change it out helps..

  2. just to let you know that the one gas station that you was at with the red gas pump still standing was owned by my mother's biological family that resided there and are buried out north of town in the randall cemetry. sure was nice that you got a pic of the station tho thanks for the ride too it was awesome.