B171 – COOL UNKNOWN AMERICA – I THINK IVE LEARNT SOMETHING – PT.5

Today is the last day of me doing my first mini photo project, Cool Unknown American. Im not really sure how much is unknown or how much everyone knows, but my plan was just to show the inner workings on America on a whistle stop tour of America these past few days. Im about to have a really busy few days, so I think its probably best is I go for a five part project.

I’m currently sat in someone’s garage as the temperature hits 95 degrees, its pretty hot and there’s no air con but that will no break me.

With these posts its always tough to figure out what to write about and with photos, Ive always wanted to let my photos do the talking and just let people read each image and take away from it what they please. That’s not really the case, if you can take a good photo that seems to be about 60% of it, the other 40% is your writing. How well you can capture and write about that photo. That’s what I’ve learnt about this project, my photos are only doing a percentage of the work, I need to explain the reason behind the photos and what I think. Maybe its time for a new shake up of this blog, change the layout and my angle. I’m coming up to the 6 month mark in 11 days and the past 171 days have taught me a lot.

Two of the photos you see below are from previous days, one is of this incredible sunset we saw over the Illinois river on the drive from St.louis to Chicago. It was like a 6 hour drive, on the same straight road of like 200 miles, we got bored half way through and turned off on to the old route 66, this photo was taken just after we joined back on the highway across over the river and then were met by this crazy sunset. I love taking photos of sunsets, they never get boring. my favourite part about this photo is the reflection off the river in the back ground, it makes it feel like mid west america to me.

The other photo is from the VW car meet, this guy was standing up on the flat bed trying to sell things I think. I dont know why, I just thought it was a good photo opportunity so i took it. that car meet was one of those moments that will stand out for me on this trip. I just happened to look out of my hotel window and saw all this craziness happening across the road, so grabbed my camera and just started taking photos. nothing was planned, it just all seemed to fall into place.

anyway I’ve just eaten way to much Chicago deep pan pizza to keep me full or the next week, so heres my three photos.  enjoy.

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– this is my view of the amazing weather outside –
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– sunset on highway 55, Illinois river –
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– this guy knew how to sell –

 

B167 – COOL UNKOWN AMERICA – ST LOUIS TO CHICAGO PT.2

today we drove from St.louis to our next destination Chicago for the fourth location on this little filming trip. its fair to say this country is absolutely bonkers but in a good way, from the size of the food portions to the crazy ideas that people seem to have and then make them work. like the city museum in downtown St.louis, where they have a 10 story side and have decided to park a school bus and a plane on top of the building, it was the sort of place were kids and grown ups can just run around and explore climbing weird structures and old planes high above the city sky line! I thought it was amazing but i wanted to explore the city and decided to go and check out downtown, I got about 5 blocks from the museum when a bunch of motorbikes started racing down the road pulling wheels and stuff just like in the movie creed it was nuts. my camera was on completely the wrong settings, so the photos were just over exposed. thats why I need the Leica M.

After this little de tour, we hit the road heading for Chicago, driving north on the 55, around an hour into the drive we went past this crazy vintage car dealer, it literally had every car you could imagine from pre 1970, including rolls royce’s, ford pops and the car that malcoms parents drive in Malcom in the middle. unfortunatly it shut like 10 mintues before me got there, which basically meant we could only look at it from the fench. I still managed to get some photos of a burnt out car they must of brought to resort. I have no idea what car it is, but I properly like the picture.

Im now at the hotel in Chicago in the area of Lake on The Hill, not sure if im near a lake but it sounds like I am. the lady at the reception told us to go and try the famous restaurant Portillo’s across the road, its fair to say that is was a good shout. that place is amazing and as its somewhere that I quite like, so heres some info on it.

Portillos was founded in 1963 by a man names dick portillo, After he was honourably discharge from the marine corpe decided to open up a hot dog stand and invested $1,100 in a 6 x 12ft trailer and parked it on North Avenue in Villa Park, Chicago. he called it “The Dog House”. the van didnt have any running water so he would have to run 250m to a local bar every now and again to give his stand a top up.

4 years later he had turned it into a successfull business and decided it was time for a revamp and opened “Portillos” , it basically took off and he went on to open more and more locations. then in 1983, the first drive though opened in Downers Grove (Chicago) and instantly became know for its quick service and good hot dogs.

this place is quickly developing a name for its self all over the US and has now opened up in southern California, Florida, Wisconsin and Minnesota. If you ever pass one of these places, trust me and stop off for a hotdog. they’re crazy enough ship anywhere in the USA!

I also drove along route 66, which i didnt get todo last time as my mates didn’t think I was a good enough driver to drive the RV. well this time I did and it was pretty cool. Im also not sure if this post fits in my project, Cool Unknown America. But I feel like this is cool america off the beaten track so it should be allow and its my project so I can say its allow, so it is. I suppose this post is more of a dairy kind of think which I quite like.

heres my snaps from today, let me know what you think! Im also not sure if this 20mm prime lens is working properly, so tomorrow im going to put it through its paces and see what happens. so if tomorrow photos are crap I apologies in advance.

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– route 66, just off the north 55 –
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– st. louis city museum –
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– the vintage car dealer on route 66, is burnt out car was waiting out the front –
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– Portillos, chicago. Hot dog and fries. Well worth it –

 

B164 – THE DAY I LOST 20,000 PHOTOS.

20,000. Thats the number of photos I may have lost today. my hard drive that I’ve been using for the past 2 months has gone down. its not being recognised in any computer. Im pretty sure its the SATA bridge but there no way to know until I get back to the UK and can run some tests, so I wont know for certain until the 29th if Ive lost those photos. Now, no one comment “did you not back them up” because I have, and at home I have two back ups for all my photos, just not any back ups from the last two months. I was going to back up those 90 days when I got back. I try to back up every month but to be honest I just havent for the past two months. this isn’t a lesson, this is just a test to see how good I am at digging myself out of a crappy situation. I got this. this is just what technology does, it breaks and goes down without any warning. I was using a professional 1TB LaCie Rugged, and its just gone down.

Im praying to god that I can fix this when I get back, by simply switching out the SATA bridge with one off Amazon or ebay. heres a link to the one I will probably buy.

https://www.amazon.com/IO-Crest-SY-ADA20079-Adapter-Cable/dp/B0057UAB2K/ref=sr_1_25?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1505357243&sr=1-25&keywords=sata+bridge

All I need todo is unscrew the casing of the drive and then disconnect the actually hard drive from the SATA to USB bridge that will be at one end and then plug it into my new one that you’ve brought of Amazon. easy.

if the same thing has happened to you, heres some tips: make sure you buy the right bridge, because depending on if you have 2.5 inch drive or a 3inch drive that will depend on what replacement you get). its easy todo and im pretty sure anyone can it do. please drop me a message at joshfspear@icloud.com with your make and model or the broken drive and I will help you to find the correct part.

Im writing this post to help anyone else who might be in this problem and has had a drive go down. its possible the worst feeling when you’ve lost content that you think is not recoverable. Im not saying its 100% that I’m going to be able to get it all back and if I cant I will be paying someone to do. it has added about 10 times more stress to my day and to this blog challenge!

to everyone else, read this and then go and back up all your content. please just do it for me. If I have lost all those photos I’ve taken on the first half of this trip, trust me they were probably the best photos you would ever of seen! they were incredible.

anyway heres some cool photos I took today in and around historic downtown st Charles just outside of St Louis. its about a 40 minute drive and is worth it. the street is full of cool little shops and is famous for its fried Ravioli, we wanted to try it last night but ended up with a burrito. tomorrow it is on the cards. enjoy these photos and let me know what you think.

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– this man was just sitting on the curb drawing on his diggery do –
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– this car looks like something out of a movie –
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– cant beat a good sunset shot –

 

 

 

 

B163 – watch out for boxer bombs

For a day off its been pretty busy, we started off at some place called gringos which is this crazy store that sells just about everything you could imagine from life size giraffes to day of the dead napkins. its one of those cool stores that goes on forever and sells everything. the weirdest thing is they have a sign on the floor warning you of dog poo from these two shop dogs called Darren and Darren, im not joking they gave two dogs the same name! if your ever on Shaw street in St louis by the botanical Gardens you cant miss this shop, stop by and say hello. the people who run it our legends.

After the first stop we moved onto the Botanical Gardens for a little adventure, its so strange how just by walking around plants and stuff can be so relaxing, i’m definitely changing my bath room at home into a forest. it would literally change the game up so much, I dont think I have any other option than to buy a bunch of plants and stick them in my bathroom. Im going to draw a few sketch’s for when I get back and hit the ground running.

Some time after we left the Botanical Gardens, we made a decision to head down town and check out St louis, we basically ended up at the baseball park, trying to buy tickets for the game this evening against Cincinnati reds, after we got hold of some tickets, we had to go to the fan store and by a hat, which in turn ended up with us blowing a bit of money to make us look like die hard fans. I would say its a success and now ive got a cool hat and jumper out of it.

The day off has been a success and now we are ready to get back to work tomorrow and finish off what we have started, “m ready to crack on and make some good TV. right after Ive got a good night sleep and a bowl of lucky charms tomorrow morning.

heres some photos from today. Im right this as the st Louis Cardinals carry on playing, at the moment they are up 13-6, so hopefully they win. I’m now a die hard Cardinals fan and only want the best for my team.

Sorry for any spelling mistakes, Im not going to proof read this.

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– the st louis cardinals –
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– whats a Boxer bomb? –
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– the botanical gardens, st louis –
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– he has know Idea what a boxer bomb is… –
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– my baseball stash –

 

B162 – New day, New state

That us done with North Carolina, next stop St. Louis Missouri, im currently at the airport watching planes take off at Raleigh Airport with a beer and burger. tomorrow is our first proper no work day off since getting to this side of the world and I actually cant wait. There’s not a definite plan but I think a water park is on the cards.

I have to say that North Carolina has been interesting from their choice of food, its just steak and deep fried fresh asparagus to the amount of guns that everyone has. In the uk you think that people in America might own one or two guns, but everyone I have spoken to seems to have about 20!

I defintatly want to come back to this part of the world not to work and rush around but to just take photos and meet the people. Its one of the those places where everyone has so much to say and its pretty cool to hear peoples views. You can’t agree with everyone but you can hear him or her out. Then make your opinion. I think we could each other learn a lot from each other.

My last day here has been filled with Pancakes, Burgers, Fries and extra large coke. I’ve had a burger for lunch and dinner and now cant wait to find a gym tomorrow and cycle till I fill normal again, its fair to say I’ve eaten the southern way these past few days, and now I’m ready for something that’s been grown and put on my plate with out any sugar or preservatives.

Anyway onto to the next state, I have no idea what Missouri is like and really excited to have a day off there and explore the city. St Louis is meant to be amazing so im looking forward to getting there and not spending the day on a schedule or with a Peli case.

Thank you Goldsboro for the big plates of food and for make me appreciate organic vegetables.

Sorry for the lack in creative photos, today I was just trying to get through it in one piece.

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– the waffle house near downtown Goldsboro –
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– sitting at releigh airport waiting for my plane –
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– getting the back end of the storm over here, so pretty rainy and cold, St louis is meant to be a bit warmer I think –