Ode to a Commute, and a Bridge

I am (recently) gainfully employed (as a registered nurse) and am fortunate to have a very lovely commute.

It has an over the river…


and through the woods…

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thing going on. Plus, it’s sunrise, which is often so colorful and striking.

Just another sunrise.

Just another sunrise.

The vibrant sunrises never seem to get old!

IMG_4166 (500x374)As the first rays hit the tops of the hills, they sometimes look hot pink (as in the above shot). It is a very striking effect.

IMG_4169 (500x331)A very flat Missouri River valley…

IMG_4189 (500x203) (2)but you can see the hills at the horizon line.

IMG_4182 (500x310)I pass horses (often with warm weather “coats” and headgear), old barns and sheds (like this green shed in the above photo) and an old (now defunct) train station (as seen on @spygarden Instagram).

It’s twenty minutes, there’s very little traffic. Now, as a nurse, I cannot advocate photographing while driving as that is not safe at all! And I do promise to stop. I did stop. To take many of these pictures. Like I said, there’s not too many cars on the road.

But the bridge…

The Daniel Boone Bridge was built in the 1930’s and is currently being replaced. It has this great patina-green color and there is always an element of danger in crossing: icy, deep, swift Missouri River below…and the lanes are SOooo narrow! Perhaps more convenient than early Western explorers trying to cross the river by ferry (or fording the thing in a wagon!), the Daniel Boone Bridge still captures that Western explorer/adventure spirit. Or maybe it’s just hunks of metal and concrete and I’m in a poetic mood?

I had the bridge just about to myself this morning, and so, even though it doesn’t make it right, (NO photography while driving!), I snapped a shot.

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I just hate the idea of this bridge getting torn down (2015) without anyone properly capturing some good photos of it. Not that this one is any good…it’s with an iphone. But I have been seriously thinking of the logistics of hiking out near the bridge on foot with the good camera to try and get some shots before it is torn down next year. There are no paths or sidewalks anywhere near the thing. It would be quite an adventure. Perhaps Chris Naffziger could do it, the author/photographer of St. Louis Patina, “a blog detailing the beauty of St. Louis architecture and the buildup of residue-or character-that accumulates over the course of time.” as it would seem to fit the theme of his unique site.

I like the look of the big construction cranes and the red and white striped cement trucks: I appreciate the creation of a new bridge, but it’s hard for me to resist wanting to capture this big old structure “taking its last breaths” (as it were).

12 thoughts on “Ode to a Commute, and a Bridge

  1. Pingback: DNP Beginnings | Spy Garden

  2. narf77

    Go take those photos…the world needs people with vision to preserve memories and who knows…those images might be someones precious memories in years to come :)

  3. gardenengineer

    Thanks for the photos. As a structural engineer, I share your admiration of both the old and the new bridges. They are much more than hunks of metal and concrete, especially to their designers (some of whom can wax as poetically about them as you please). The older structural steel bridges are particularly notable because the work of the structural engineers is entirely exposed to view (I’m a buildings guy and most of my work is hidden behind cladding and finishes). It’s a shame that the oldest span must be removed–latticed steel framing like that provides an openness that modern rolled sections cannot recreate. The newest span will be entirely open, of course, but there will be no structure to be seen (except from directly beneath it).

  4. Eliza Waters

    Congrats on the new job, really lovely (and doable) commute, since it’s the crack of dawn, I can see why there isn’t much traffic. Good thing you are a morning person! Full time or part time? Do you miss getting the kids off to school? :-)

    1. Spy Garden Post author

      Thanks! I started the job back in January so I am now pretty used to the new routine. It is full time but I’m done pretty early in the afternoon so lots of quality time with the family (and garden)! I have to say I don’t really miss the morning bustle of getting the kids off to school, glad Smoochie is handling those duties haha!

  5. Tara

    Why would they tear it down? It is history and they turn these old bridges into pedestrian bridges elsewhere :(

    1. Spy Garden Post author

      I’m guessing from an engineering point of view it’s not worth the danger/cost of having to maintain the old bridge: just wouldn’t be cost-effective to keep it (especially for pedestrian use only). And it is in kind of a weird spot (the river banks are basically ACRES of woods) so it’s not exactly like it would even get a lot of pedestrian traffic. It is sad though I agree!


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