"Place, with a trace of humanity" Photography/Photo of the Day/Pittsburgh

Posts tagged “driving

Unexpected Signage at East Exit Motel and Street View Google Car in an Alley

Be the Change SignWilliam Penn Highway on the way to the crafts store Pat Catan’s in Murraysville.

After I bought the couple of items I needed, I had to drive and turn around and come back so I could photograph this sign.  There’s a median in the middle of the road and LOTS of traffic so it was a bit of an effort but I knew I wouldn’t be this way again in the near future.

This location is near the Pennsylvania Turnpike Entrance/Exit.

The motel is old school in appearance and it would be nice to include the sign AND the motel itself but too dangerous to shoot from the highway itself so pulled into their parking lot. There was a lot of truck traffic.

Here is a slice of the motel taken out the passenger window.

East Exit Motel

And then later in the afternoon what did I see in my neighborhood?

A GOOGLE car with a big camera mounted the top, driving down an alley way off of Bryant Street.

Collecting images for Street View? Here is information on how the photos are turned into Street View.

I don’t know.  You can sure see them coming. By the time I got the camera to my eye they were going.

Headed in a different direction.

I wonder how much the camera costs that is on the top of the car? I looked up LIDAR camera technology.


google car

Above view is the cropped version of the photograph below.


google car in alleyBy the way, that sky is a true blue sky which is rare in our city. They say we have just 59 sunny days a year.

Well, this was one of them.   Seriously hot, too.

Millbrae Way is the name of the alley shown and it’s near the historic marker of the Billy Eckstine home on Bryant Street. Born in 1914-Died- 1993.  I just went to look up his grave and he was cremated and ashes given to a family member. There are many famous graves in Pittsburgh.

How I went from the signage at the East Exit Motel, to Google camera car to famous people buried in Pittsburgh I’m not sure so will close and post.

Train Trestle in Traffic

Driving down the Parkway West as they call it (Route 376) the construction area provided lots of traffic.

Cars with brakes and I was able to photograph a scene I’ve just admired from the driver’s seat.

Train cars on the tracks were the added bonus.

train overhead

train overhead 2

So What Are You Supposed to Do?

You’re taking the same exit as the truck in front of you with the sign?

What do you do?

Roanoke Route 581  Photographed by Marlene with Erika driving. The truck exited the same direction they wanted to go.  They exited too!

Thanks for sending these Mar. Fun.IMG_5242


IMG_5243 (1)



Moonlight Commute

Headed to the garage, time for school.

I make tentative choices- try to place my feet

When I unlock the car,  the rear lights show where it’s rough on the

temporary ice rink.

Thaw and melt

makes frozen glass on top of gravel and mud.    I saw the moon.


Down the slick hill to the main road,

I pulled over, waited for cloud cover to move

A couple of grainy cell phone pics,  try to capture the moon, the mood-

then off to work.

Glass of Coffee Refraction on the Way to School

A new weekly photo challenge will come out Friday afternoon. I posted a gallery of light through crystals already but –

Here’s what I noticed on the way to school ( I didn’t get to the Drive-Thru)

I saw the light refracting through the glass pattern onto my coffee and out the other side of the glass.

I don’t think I was looking for refractions last week prior to the challenge.

This one presented itself.

(And yes, you’re right. The pink and orange is a gift card from Dunkin Donuts.)

Glass of Coffee

Outhouse Roofs and a Threatening Sky (plus plural of roof?)

Drama where you find it.

Rule one. Get out of car to compose better shot.


Such a great light and I was lazy.  Sitting in the driver’s seat.  Had to turn around because Larimer Avenue was in the process of being blocked off for some kind of light up night festivity last Saturday afternoon.


Why oh why did I not get out and take more than these two shots?  The white on these roofs was so nice.

and in case you are wondering rooves is obsolete  I thought about it.       Plural of roof. Like hoof.  Hooves.  But rooves is now deemed obsolete.


outhouse roofs

The white on the roofs of these outhouses caught my eye. And the sky.  And the eerie wind blowing as if some storm was brewing close by.



outhouses and a threateneing skyOh yes, there was a very interesting tree blowing in the wind.

Texas Bluebonnets Through a Rental Van Windshield

They are everywhere.

As far as the eye can see.

Bluebonnet wildflowers.  Beautiful color of blue, the Lupinus Texensis is the state flower of Texas.

I photographed (70-200 Canon L series lens) the wildflowers on the way to the San Antonio airport last Sunday.

Was NOT the driver of the rental van but the passenger. (Thanks Rick)  Figure we were going about 70 mph so the blue is a bit of a blur.


Empty Sign

Driving from Columbus to Pittsburgh I pulled off the exit and photographed this sign.  Looked like an outline for Batman.

Didn’t drive in to see if I could find a clue what the sign was for originally.

Sign to Nowhere

Steep Streets

Pittsburgh has some steep streets. I plan to find them and photograph them when winter’s gone.

carrick streetA friend posted an info-graphic  Steepest Streets in America.  The top ten.  Two are in Pittsburgh.

Dornbush Street and Canton Avenue.

This street headed up to Brownsville Road is a steep one.  It is also a one way so I didn’t drive up it.

On the way to school the other morning…

The sidewalk turns into stairs and has a railing the whole way up.  It isn’t on the info graphic but you know I’m on a mission to find the two steepest Pittsburgh streets listed and photograph them for the blog.

In the early ’90s we used to drive down a street in Mt. Washington that  looked like you were driving off  the end of the world. Three kids strapped in seat belts in back. We’d go around again, they’d lose their stomachs and we’d pretend we were on a roller coaster.

The list of the top five steepest streets in Pittsburgh -and one is in the Carrick neighborhood where I was driving.

Excerpt from Frontiernet.net  below-

  • Canton Avenue is a 37% grade, and is in the Beechview neighborhood. It is the steepest street in Pittsburgh.
  • Dornbush Street is a 32% grade, and is in the East Hills neighborhood.
  • Boustead Street is a 29% grade, and is in the Beechview neighborhood.
  • East Woodford Avenue is a 27% grade, and is in the Carrick neighborhood.
  • Rialto Street is a 25% grade, and is in the Troy Hills neighborhood.


I went and looked up the info about Steve McQueen driving in Bullitt and what street that was in San Francisco.

Taylor Street is not in the top ten but here is an interesting post about the making of that famous driving scene.

Who You Gonna Call When Your Neon’s Ailing? The Neon Doctor

Neon.  An inert gas.  2/3 the density of air. When put into electric signs it glows, catches your eye. You can read about Neon Signs here.

Not sure how much neon signage you have in your neighborhood but there’s a lot around the city.

I was filling up my car’s gas tank and looked across the street.

After I screwed on the  gas cap, I got my camera out of my school bag. I had the long lens.

Another day I’ll go and visit the interior and ask if the Neon Doctor is in.

Good to know there’s a place that can restore and repair the neon signs.

Neon Doctor

From across the street. Shot with a Canon 70-200 lens L series.

Cropped shot.   I will get energized and go and actually visit the place after school one day.  Neon Signs int


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