Late last May I was driving north from home when I saw a car coming down the hill with a prominent tower atop its roof; I was pretty sure it was a Google Streetview vehicle, but could no get my phone out of lock mode to take a photo, but I did the next best thing- I waved at the camera.

That night I went home, and I checked Google Maps to see if I was on it, but their latest imagery for this stretch of road was from 2012. But that was one of those happy accidents, where I discovered that Google gave you access to a timeline of past Streetview images in the same location, essentially providing a way to do a wee bit of time travel.

I wrote on June 5, 2015:

Last weekend I was driving north from home on highway 87, and coming down the hill from the of the Rim was a car with a giant rig on the roof bearing a round object. IT’S THE GOOGLE STREETVIEW CAMERA! I could not get my phone out quickly enough for a photo, so I waved out the window like a Grinning Jerk.

For some reason tonight my guests Sandy, Peter and I were talking about exploring things in Google Earth. It got me thinking because the last time I checked, the Google Streetview images of my house were gone. But tonight at least they were back (that image is old, from 2008, it shows my old car in the driveway).

But I told them about this story of passing the Streetview car, and as I was doing so, I used it to start navigating up highway 87 where I thought this had happened. I moved all the way up the hill and down again, and saw other vehicles but not mine. I pulled up the blog post dated June 5 where I mention it was last weekend, and Sandy said, “It has to be there, a few days earlier than June 5 could easily be May.”

And on the third pass I spotted my red truck, you can find this same location via Google Maps:


That most certainly looks like Red Dog, my pickup truck. Some more views (it takes some working of the camera angle and limited zoom:


I have my kayak in the back. I find in my flickr photos that on May 31, 2015, I went up this way to go kayaking at Blue Ridge Reservoir:

I feel so… embedded into the history of the world. Thank you Google Streetview for taking my photo!

Top / Featured Image : Screen shot of Google Streetview showing me waving at the camera (despite some people’s claims in twitter of a middle finger salute).

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An early 90s builder of web stuff and blogging Alan Levine barks at on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person. And he is 100% into the Fediverse (or tells himself so) Tooting as


  1. The Big Red Dog will live on in glory on the internetz. It’s getting to a point where everything you do and own becomes digital in some way. The Lawnmower man!

  2. If you haven’t already seen it, you should check out Jon Rafman’s Tumblr. It’s an aggregation of striking photos captured from street view shots from around the world.

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