Before our trip to Colonia I had read often that there were a number of old cars running around town. I went with the expectation it was a ‘mini Havana’, in reality there were few old cars and trucks, and most of those were parked in front of restaurants as advertising.
Still those that were there, including a number of VW Beetles, coupled with the street scenes, provided good photo ops.
We start however with one of the ‘fast ferries’ from Buenos Aires. These ferries can go up to 60 MPH.
With the tourist industry there were numerous places that rented golf carts and scooters, though most were not as cool as this one.
And with that we are headed on the ferry back to Buenos Aires – with the buildings of the city visible in the distance from 30 miles away.
The Larz Anderson Auto Museum in the Boston suburb of Brookline is advertised as America’s oldest automotive museum. Larz and his wife were very early auto enthusiasts, buying their first ‘horseless carriage’ in 1899.
By the 1920s they had collected enough cars they stored them in the carriage house, and opened up their museum.
I had very high hopes for this museum, as it regularly makes the ‘top automotive museum’ lists. When we arrived we were greeted, somewhat, by a lady at the counter who barely had time to interrupt her conversation with her cousin about something to take our money and waive us towards the cars.
This obviously set a tone of disappointment, that fortunately was neutralized by a nice, small collection of some very impressive autos in a display called the Golden Age.
Further back there was a second room with a few more cars, also well displayed.
Another small room had a collection of pedal cars, and other items.
There is some nice automotive art throughout. The lower level had a few more very vintage autos in various states, as well as a bicycle collection.
The Larz Anderson Auto Museum is a nice place – however having seen numerous auto museums across the world I don’t think it rates as one of the premier ones. Perhaps had we attended on one of their numerous special events days where people bring their own classic cars.
Montreal is a very old city for North America, and as such has many outstanding vintage buildings. Most are in the Vieux (Old) Montreal section, but some, like the Mary Queen of the World Cathedral, is downtown.
The main train station has reliefs depicting Canada culture with the words of the National Anthem ‘Oh Canada’ written underneath.
There are numerous vintage buildings throughout the area, with the usual cool details.
The Old Montreal tourist area has numerous shops.
Some very narrow passages.
The Port of Montreal Clock Tower dates from the 1920s. It is also known as the Sailors Memorial Clock, dedicated to World War I Canadian Sailors.
The original sections of Bonsecours Market date from the 1840s. In addition to serving as a market, it also housed government functions.
Place Jacques-Cartier is the center of Old Montreal tourist activities.
Finally a stop at Notre Dame Cathedral, and an amazing (but brief) light show.
A slang for someone who rides the subway a lot is a ‘strap hanger’. The term comes from the early days where there were actual straps that the standing passengers held onto.
This posting illustrates the history of New York City Subway cars and the changes in the seats, and ‘straps’.
Only the very oldest cars have the cloth straps! In addition this BMT Q car has rattan seats that are very cool.
Very early on the cloth straps were replaced with metal ones.
The next version has already moved to the metal bars. I am certain the straps wore out quickly, whereas the bars last forever.
Our next version loses the rattan seats, replaced with these stylish green and yellow stripes. The bars have also evolved to be much larger, so more people can hang on while standing.
This is an IRT R-12 car dating from 1948.
On the IRT R-15 car the bench seating continues, only in solid red, while the bars are still large and protruding. This car dates from 1950.
The first plastic seats make an appearance on an R42. This type of car was most famously used in the 1971 movie The French Connection, where the good guy is in a car chasing the bad guy who stole a train.
Time to board our next car – the ‘straps’ have returned! This car is a R33 ‘World’s Fair’ car, so named as it was released in 1963, the same year the city hosted the World’s Fair.
The last of the straight bench seating makes an appearance.
As we move closer to the modern design, randomized seating.
Finally by the 1970s it looks essentially the same as today’s cars. Not nearly as elegant as the cloth straps and wicker seats, but far more functional and durable.
Time to hang out on the benches in the station and reflect on the changes of the subway over the last 100 years.
As the song goes Route 66 went from Chicago to L.A., going through Missouri along the way. While much of it is gone, replaced by freeways, there are still portions that are intact.
Many unique places remain along these portions of the Mother Road. One such place is just west of Springfield, Missouri. It is a restored Sinclair Gas Station full of cool, quirky things, including numerous ‘vintage’ vehicles.
A very nice lady named Barbara is the current owner of the property, having taken over for her father after he passed away. Barbara enthusiastically welcome all visitors, and the visitors seem genuinely pleased to be there.
On the day we were there one of the old trucks her father had owned was returned to it’s rightful spot at the station.
As noted plenty of tourists make the stop to check it out. I suggest if you get the chance you do the same.