Just returned from a quick work trip down (way down) to Albany, GA. I was excited to learn in my pre-trip research that I had totally forgotten this was the birthplace of one of my absolute favorites: the incomaparable Ray Charles.
So, I had to bring my entire cohort of travelers to the downtown area to pay an homage visit to the Ray Charles Plaza. It was a lovely spot with benches that looked like piano keys. Curving pathways in black and white, wooden swings, nice landscaping and a central fountain with a life size sculpture of Ray seated at a piano performing, microphone and all.
The only disappointment was the lack of Ray’s music. There were speakers everywhere and the woman at the hotel said that music was playing. But, not on the days I was there.
I had to go back the next morning to grab some photos from the sunrise across the Flint River that then bathed the sculpture with the nice first light of the day. The slideshow is below.
The other thing that I noticed were the two bridges. There was the “new” bridge that we crossed to enter the downtown area. Modern looking, with a some neat metal arches on the end. That road when through downtown and passed a new Hilton Garden Inn, a new looking jail and other government buildings.
The other “old” bridge was mason work with arches, etc. It was blocked off, even to pedestrian traffic. The road that led from that bridge to the downtown contained an entirely different world. The road was lined with shops, local restaurants, and plenty of empty buildings as well.
I was glad we went down both roads but I was sad to see that the more interesting road to welcome someone to Albany for the first time was the one from the old and unused bridge. This struck me and is something i want to think about some more in context to how we approach anything new: there are usually two bridges to it (sometimes more) I wonder which bridge is more useful: the old bridge that might be less modern but takes you to some pretty interesting sites or the new, modern bridge that might be safer and take you to slick, new stuff but you might miss some cool stuff along the way. I want to try to make sure I use both bridges and see all the paths.
Enjoy the show: