(NO) VACANCY (Rt 66 Chelsea OK)
One of the tubing holes for the missing neon NO is visible on the left. The motel owners, usually an older couple, would flip a switch and turn on the NO when the place was filled--or when it was their bedtime.
VACANCY has been severed and the neon is dangling. The last part, NCY, is still attached at the far right. Faded, peeling paint that originally spelled out the word forms a backdrop.
This is from the Chelsea Motel sign, likely from the early 1950s. Lighting is the key here--strong mid-day sun would show only badly-faded paint on an ugly broken sign.