Another memory up in flames!

Another building burned up that I used to go to as a kid. We would go to Yermo every now and then to eat at the International Cafe. Well Friday night, the abandoned building that once housed the restaurant burned to the ground. That is the way of the desert, eventually this happens to most buildings left vacant here. Like Lake Delores, and McMahon’s Fruniture, it now only exists in my memories.

Fire destroys vacant restaurant building in Yermo

Jello – land…..mmmmmmm

Yesterdays, 5.4 earthquake shook us around a little. It felt like you were on Jello as it wiggled. At my office, I thought someone heavy had walked up behind me until I realized our floor is concrete and doesn’t move. I looked at a decoration on cubicle wall and watched it sway back and forth. Renee and Jesse felt it at the house, but none of us were freaked out by it. It has been a while since we had one that strong, but we do live in California after all. Jello-land!

Another Barstow building becomes a memory!

This morning as I drove in from Apple Valley to work, I saw a plume of smoke over the hills as I approached Barstow and I knew that something big was burning. It turns out it was an old furniture store building that sat right in the middle of Main Street and changed names over the years before finally becoming vacant.

Here is the link to the Desert Dispatch story:
http://www.desertdispatch.com/news/barstow_3912___article.html/west_building….

Here is a link to Steve Smith’s Flickr Photo of the mop-up:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/barstowsteve/2700935223/

Mom was a telephone operator

Switchboard Photo Link
One of my classmates posted this image on his Flickr account. My mother donated this switchboard to the Mother Road Museum in Barstow when they sold their house. I have seen it referred to as “Barstow’s 1st switchboard” which isn’t exactly true. It was one of the first and sat in a room with a dozen others until the equipment was replaced with computer switching and all the operators found other work. My mom stayed on as a construction clerk until retirement. It was always easy to remember mom’s work number. You dialed zero and asked for her by her first name. It was neat seeing all the operators working the switchbaords in that room.

I’m a lumberjack….

On Saturday, Jesse and I made the trip to Barstow to take care of a tree that fell at my brother’s house. Recent winds toppled it over and it was blocking part of the driveway. It was a little draining since we got there around 3 pm during the hottest part of the day. We worked for about an hour and brought home several souvenirs from the experience. Scratches and cuts don’t take that long to heal.

Speed Racer & Mojave Desert Road Trip

Tuesday night, Renee and I went to see the Speed Racer movie. Jesse wasn’t interested, but having grown up watching the cartoon, I wanted to check it out. Besides, it was only $5 on Tuesdays. It was a good attempt at making a live-action cartoon, but Iron Man was a much better written movie. The special effects and costuming were really great, but the movie itself is destined for the DVD bargain bin. Unless you are a die-hard Speed Racer fan, wait until it hits the discount DVDs.

Yesterday, I was able to go on a photo safari for work through the Mojave Desert. I began by photographing the Newberry & Rodman Mountains before making the trip to Amboy Crater. From there, I took photos of the Marble Mountains/Trilobite Wilderness before heading into the Mojave National Preserve. While there, I photographed the Kelso Dunes, Kelso Depot and Kelso Peak/Old Dad Mountains. Returning south at Baker, I took some photos of Rasor OHVA before heading to Afton Canyon. A quick stop at Camp Cady was followed by visits to Calico Early Man Site and Calico Ghost Town before returning to the office just in time to call it a day. Hopefully, I was able to get some decent photos that can be used on CaliforniaDesert.gov.