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Thursday, November 27, 2008

USA: Painted Horses

I saw the sign on my way to Raoul's in Massachusetts. Carousel Museum. Since I've decided I'm no longer going to do eight hours driving in one day, instead shooting for a maximum of six, I have some time to stop along the way, take my mind off the highway, and play tourist. Tha timing for the Carousel Museum was bad though. It showed up while I was looking for a motel for the night. It would just have to wait.

On my way back to Pennsylvania, though, I planned ahead and went in search of the museum. In keeping with what seems to be a general Connecticutt idea about 'tasteful' signs, the museum was a bit hard to spot. In Connecticutt, any sign that can be easily seen and recognized as such has been deemed to be in poor taste. Enter small signs, low-key and low-contrast colors, and old-fashioned script that can be really hard to read. All of these are wonderful attributes that endear the state to those of us who are getting older.

The museum, fortunately, was just the opposite, with rooms of bright colors,big horses,and bejeweled animals. The museum is also a workshop, where old carousel animals are brought for restoration and repair and new sculptures are created. Some of the items have been restored, while others are left in faded glory, paint rubbed off by hands and thighs and the excited kicks of children.

I thought I should mention that the Carousel Museum is in Bristol, Connecticutt.

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