Fotoeins Fotografie

questions of place & home

Posts from the ‘Road Warrior’ category

1-dayer in the American Southwest (2): Taos area

Above/feature: In the background at right-centre is the sacred Pueblo Peak (Taos Mountain) with a light dusting of autumn snow.

The following takes place entirely within day 7 of our time and drive through the American Southwest.

In a daylong trip from Santa Fe, we’re in Taos for the first time where we meet with nature photographer Jim O’Donnell, whose writings also appear locally in The Taos News. We also marvel in the hamlet of Embudo the collection of paraphernalia associated with American automobile culture at the Classic Gas Museum.

Our drive is on the Low Road in both directions. It’s no real surprise we’re in the Taos area longer than anticipated, but we leave the area a little earlier to catch a couple of sights back in Santa Fe as we must depart the following day for Arizona. It’s curse and benefit, wanting (or needing) to stay in one place for an extended duration with the anticipation of a return, because there’s much more to see and learn.

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Bugs Bunny, Warner Bros. Cartoons, Bully for Bugs (1953)

That Left Turn in Albuquerque, 1938-2019

Above/featured: “Bully for Bugs” (Warner Bros. Pictures, 1953).

Something is burrowing through the desert when a creature pops up through a hole in the dirt. A grey rabbit stands, brushing himself off and looking at his surroundings. Realizing he’s not where he should be, he checks his map and says aloud with mild irritation:

I knew I should’ve taken that left turn at Albuquerque.

That Bugs Bunny statement is a long-recurring theme and gag in a number of Warner Brothers cartoons. But seriously, that is one very specific geographical reference. What does Bugs mean by “that left turn?” Is it a real thing?

After the 1937 realignment of highway US route-66, Central Avenue became the east-west “Mother Road” through the city of Albuquerque. Driving west on Central Avenue towards the city’s Old Town district, the road bends slightly right and northwest to run parallel with the Rio Grande river. The road eventually comes up to a junction, and drivers are faced with choices at the intersection of what are now Central Avenue and Rio Grande Boulevard.

•   Turn right, and drivers are headed away from US-66 and north towards Santa Fe.
•   Jig slightly left, and drivers continue west on US-66 towards Arizona and the highway’s west terminus in Los Angeles, California.

John Deeth wrote about this in August 2011.

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Siegessäule, Grosse Stern, Tiergarten, Berlin, Germany, fotoeins.com

My Berlin: 24 bumper tracks in the capital

Above/featured: Siegessäule & Grosse Stern, at night – 13 Nov 2012 (HL).

I compiled a list of songs accompanying my travel, a soundtrack that’s full of meaning and memories. This is another set, a listing of 24 tracks I associate with the capital city of Germany. Music is always about personal selection, and every track fires a specific memory of time and place within Berlin. For example, watching “Lola rennt” (Run Lola Run) in a movie theatre in Toronto in the fall of 1998 planted the seeds for a move to Germany three years later. My first visit to Berlin soon after marked the beginning of my love affair with the “grand lady.”

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Ehrwald Bahnhof, Kulmalukko, Wikipedia

Over $500 savings with Eurail AT-DE pass (spring 2018)

Above/featured: Ehrwald station in Austria. 2014 photo by Kulmalukko (CC BY-SA 4.0).

I’m tuned to keeping alive a long-standing streak.

I’m in Germany for the 18th consecutive year this May. But, back “home” bookends the bulk of my time in Austria with key visits to Innsbruck, Salzburg, and Vienna.

I’ve purchased a 2nd-class Eurail Austria-Germany Pass (adult) with 10 (+ bonus 1) non-consecutive days of travel inside an interval of two months. With my preference for open-ended travel over advanced purchase of individual point-to-point tickets, I will save over 500 dollars. Here I describe:

  1. how flexibility with a rail pass provides significant money savings, and
  2. how I validate and activate the rail pass upon arrival in Europe.

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Frankfurt am Main Hauptbahnhof, central station, Hauptbahnhof, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, fotoeins.com

$600 savings with the German Rail Pass (fall 2017)

Above: 6am at Frankfurt am Main Hauptbahnhof, 20 May 2016 (HL).

I’ve set foot inside Germany at least once each year since 2001. I’m “home” again for the 17th consecutive year with this autumn’s itinerary in the country’s central corridor, including Heidelberg, Konstanz, Ulm, Hannover, Kassel, Berlin, Würzburg, and Frankfurt am Main.

Thanks to their summer 20% promotion, I’ve purchased for €284 a 2nd-class German Rail Pass with ten days of travel inside one month. Compared to the advanced purchase of individual point-to-point tickets, I’m saving at least 50 dollars (Canadian), but with my preference for open-ended travel, my savings will exceed 600 dollars.

Below I describe:

  1. in detail how flexibility with the rail pass provides hundreds of dollars in savings, and
  2. how the rail pass is validated and activated.

( Click here for more )

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