Week 29, Theme 22 – It’s A Mystery

Still not having regained my walking stamina, today I took a slow drive through Bradenton’s Village of the Arts.  This quaint little district is on the edge of downtown and offers a wide variety of photo ops, art galleries and a few coffee houses.  As I drove past this house I looked and said “what in the world”?  I drove around the block for another pass and stopped and took this picture thinking about the theme “It’s A Mystery”.

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As I continued my drive through the area I spotted this cottage where a man and lady were diligently working outside. In fact I drove by so many times, the gentleman came out to the street and asked me if I was going to arrest him :).  Of course I told him about the blog and explained what I was doing.  Unfortunately I didn’t have any of my business cards with me, but he was good with my explanation.

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This little sign fully placed this cottage into the theme of “It’s A Mystery”.  I’m going to solve this mystery in a couple of weeks and drive by and see what this addition turned out to be.

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Week 18, Theme 7 – Car Lights

Everyone seems to have responded to this theme in the same way; pictures of car head or tail lights both during the day and night.  Well by now, y’all have gotten to know George, the perennial blog clown.  For my response to the them “Car Lights” I’m giving you some pictures of “No Car Lights”.  😀

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And here’s a T-bucket that hasn’t hidden his lights including a big ole fog light.

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So there you have it folks, “No Car Lights” and “Car Lights”.

Week 8, Theme 6 – Bridge

Anyone crossing the Manatee River between Bradenton and Palmetto, whether on the Desoto Bridge or the Greene Bridge is unable to miss the CSX Railroad bridge which crosses the river between the other two bridges.

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The Tampa Southern Railroad, which was incorporated in 1917, and was a subsidiary of the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, constructed a rail line from Tampa to a point in Sarasota County, southeast of Sarasota, in a small town named Southfort (near Fort Ogden in the Peace River valley).  This railroad line was completed to Sarasota by 1924 and ultimately to Southfort by 1927.  Northeast of Palmetto near Rubonia,  a rectangular loop was constructed to serve the agricultural growers in the area and return to the mainline in Palmetto.  This loop was known as the “Ellenton Belt Line”.  Just south of Palmetto the line crossed the Manatee River.  To accomplish this crossing, a deck causeway was built which tied into a bascule bridge on the Bradenton side of the river just north of the Braidentown Railroad Depot (now Dr. Pope’s Eye Depot).

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This bridge is a single leaf bascule bridge (drawbridge) which utilizes a counterweight at one end to raise the span.  I was unable to determine the exact date that this bridge was built but I can’t imagine it being 90 years old.  This bridge only sees about 4 trains daily, the north and south bound Tropicana Juice Train and the north and southbound Tampa-Bradenton Local mixed freight.  With permission from the U.S. Coast Guard in 2004, the bridge operation was automated without a bridge tender.  As a train approaches the bridge from either direction, contact is made with the CSX Signal Department.  They in turn activate scanners at water level to ensure there are no boats in the vicinity of the bridge opening and then with a constant warning alarm, the bridge is lowered.  After the train has crossed the span, the bridge re-opens to allow marine traffic to continue.

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Thanks to Wikipedia, my major source for this history lesson. 🙂

Week 4, Theme 41 – Single Color on Black & White

Selective color or “Single Color on Black & White” is something that I have never played around with so this challenge gave me something new to have some fun with.  Riverwalk in downtown Bradenton along the Manatee River never fails to provide photo ops and this visit was no exception.  There is a lot of color in the children’s playground area, notwithstanding lots and lots of petunias.  A perfect opportunity to experiment with presenting a couple of examples of “Single Color on Black & White”.

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Week 2, Theme 19 – Horses and Humans

I took a ride to Anna Maria Island with hopes of answering some of the themes on our list.  When I reached Palma Sola Bay I immediately pulled over and started shooting.  What was I shooting at?  There in the water of the bay was a perfect example of “Horses and Humans” both enjoying a swim in the warm waters of the bay.  This family sure knows how to relax.

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Week 49 – 31. Out of Control

It seems that wherever you go you see buildings, railroad cars and public parks and places defaced with graffiti or tagging.  Some of this is gang related where the gangs mark their “turf”, some of it is expressions of art and done by very talented people and some of it is just plain vandalism.  Regardless of the reasons, you’ve got to agree with me that this has really gotten “Out of Control”.  I guess I’m guilty of a drive by shooting of these two tenements or apartment buildings along the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway in New York.

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And then these Tropicana railroad cars are a mobile display of graffiti.

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Week 39 – A5. Silhouettes

During a recent stay at Manatee Memorial Hospital I was fortunate to have a window bed with a view of the Manatee River and the Tarpon Point Grill.  This was definitely a spirit builder.  One morning toward the end of my stay I was looking out the window at the sunrise and thought to myself, I sure wish I had my camera, and then BAM!, it hit me.  I had my Smarter Than Me phone, I’ll use it to capture a sunrise photo.  After looking at the photo, I said to myself, self, here’s your “Silhouettes” theme for the blog.

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