“Wow! Did you see that?” my teenage son yelps.
“Dad, back up, you missed it!”
I check my review mirror, look for a safe place to turn around and slowly backtrack to see what treasure I missed.
From the time they were big enough to see out the windows from their car seats, my children were keen observers of passing life. They learned early on that their dad was always on the lookout for the unusual.
Tucker, in particular, became a spotter of the unusual. He often screeched and waved his little hands, startling me each time. At 21, he is still emphatic.
Leaving the main highways and searching the backroads of our country with a camera has always been a favorite pastime. There are few things I enjoy more—or find more therapeutic—than wandering down rural roads searching for visual treasures to photograph. I have met some of the most interesting “country philosophers” once I left America’s main roads.
Given the long shadow of the pandemic and associated fears of interacting with others, long, slow drives off the beaten paths looking for humor and the unusual things we humans do can be calming and entertaining.
Take a slow drive in the country or a long walk along a scenic trail or bike path with your camera. Breathe in the beauty through your eyes and notice things you pass by often without seeing.
Pull safely off the road or highway. Some folks might not appreciate a camera—especially with a long lens—pointed at their property. I make sure I am seen and avoid shooting out my window, when possible. I wave when people look at me suspiciously. I have had few unpleasant backwoods encounters.
Email your best image with caption information to GPH@pur.coop. We may share the best submissions on our website and social media channels.