Every street tells a story. Look down. What do you see?
When we travel, my husband Larry often scolds me for stopping in the middle of the street to take photos. He’s right, of course, it’s a dangerous habit, but if something tickles my fancy, I can’t help it. (I have a very ticklish fancy!)
Bricks for Ballast
Those blue-tinged bricks you see at the top of this post, caught my eye in San Juan, Puerto Rico. According to our tour guide, they were used as ballast in Portuguese sailing ships. The sailors either traded or sold the stones to locals, who then used them to pave their streets.
Bricks from a Ghost Town
The historic paving bricks in the second shot were manufactured in Thurber, Texas. Now a ghost town with a population of 5, Thurber was once the largest company-owned town in the south. Back then, Texas and Pacific Coal Company owned everything in Thurber, from the houses, to the church, to the opera house, to every single business.
The company even created its own currency for Thurber’s citizens. It was useless, however, outside the fenced-in city limits. In its hey-day, Thurber had the most prolific vitrified paving brick plant west of the Mississippi thanks to local clay deposits. I spotted these at the Fort Worth Botanic Garden, but you can find Thurber bricks all over Texas. They even make up part of the Galveston sea wall.
Bricks from Ancient Rome
I don’t know much about the last set of paving bricks in this photo essay. I saw them in Italy, and was intrigued by their trapezoidal rather than rectangular shape. If you can tell me anything about them, please comment below. I’m sure these ancient Roman bricks have seen a lot of history, and have many tales to tell!
Follow me on Instagram & I’ll follow you back!
I’ve gone from turning up my nose at the idea of cell phone pictures, to being an avid iPhone photographer, which is why my theme for the 2014 A to Z blog challenge is Instagram Travel Photos. If you are on Instagram, I’d be delighted to follow you. Simply follow my photo feed (@TuiSnider) on Instagram and I’ll follow you back!
What is the April A to Z Blog Challenge?
Each April, people from all over the world participate in the April A to Z blog challenge, and you can too. It’s a lot of fun and it’s a great way to meet other bloggers. To play along, all you do is make a blog post for each letter of the alphabet during April, then use the blog hop linky to visit as many other bloggers as you can. In 2013 for instance, my post for the letter A was “Alien Grave in Aurora, Texas.”
My A to Z Inspired Book: Unexpected Texas
I’d like to thank everyone who commented on my blog during the A to Z Challenge last year, because it convinced me to take the self-publishing plunge. On March 2, 2014, I released Unexpected Texas as a paperback and eBook and it quickly became an Amazon Best Seller!