When is a phone booth not a phone booth?
Clan Ross began the return journey last night, and today we are aiming to make it to Spokane, WA for lunch before continuing on to Missoula, MT. If I were to judge all of the gas stations
In rural Oregon by the handful I’ve seen, I’d say they were an odd contrast: at first glance, they’re completely ordinary. However, they are full service and someone else is paid to pump your gas for you. At first I thought this was due to the old but well-maintained pumps; however, at this last station (the Cross Roads Truck Stop in Umatilla, OR) they had nice, newer pumps with credit card readers.
It felt a little weird handing my credit card to another guy just to swipe it.
As I headed in to find some beverages for the next leg, I found a different treasured throwback standing next to the entrance: a well-maintained 1980’s pay phone booth.
If I were to see one of these anywhere else, I could almost guarantee it would either be decorated with marker graffiti or it would have long since been removed from the face of human civilization; this piece, in comparison, was museum-grade. I had to have a picture, but I didn’t want to hang around with a reputation for looking like a tourist so I decided to get it on the way out.
When I came out, I got a different view and was struck by the fact that the booth was empty — literally devoid of any inhabitant.
The phone booth is clean and intact, but there’s neither phone nor directory — a contrast between the old and new paradigms, a reminder that the age of the pay phone has passed, leaving the booth as a curious reminder of younger days. It’s a collectible to be admired, not used.
What happened to the phone and directory in this booth — did they just fade away one day when no one was looking?
The funny thing is, I tend to forget about these things until I see them again for the first time in years; like an acquaintance who quietly disappeared long ago, I think, ‘oh yeah — whatever happened to that?’
Umatilla to Spokane?!? Dude, you’re blowing by my neck of the woods!
Lol that’s the right way to put it, we’re trying to get home as fast as possible with a 2 year-old!
In fact, we just pulled out of Coeur D’Alene.
Coeur D’Alene is gorgeous. Reminds me, I should head over to Flickr, see what more photos you have, especially for my chance to recognize something.
Well, they’ll be there awhile. 😉
I bet the two-year-old did great on this trip, Rob. I loved her sweater in that picture.
We’ve been enjoying the time together for sure; one thing I’m learning about these 2 year-olds is that they have a way of changing plans . . . For example, we never made it to Astoria the other day!
Lovely images and ideas about what remains to be seen, if we take the time to notice – and stop – even if not wanting to appear “touristy” 😉
Safe journey back!
I do like to keep a low profile. 🙂