Archive for the ‘writing’ Category

No Golfing

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I recently drove by a school with a historic preservation sign out front. What photographer can resist an ivy-covered brick building in the fall (or something that you know is going to change)? I had a few minutes so I pulled in and snapped a few shots. Unfortunately I only had my zoom lens with me.

Red Vines

Vine-Covered School

Red Leaves

I shot the bright red leaves, and the vines trailing over windows and the front steps, but it felt like it deserved so much more. I was determined to come back with my normal lens to get different shots.

But I only have time for these photo trips on weekends. The weather turned during the week; a mild fall suddenly became winter.

I went back a week later and the beauty was gone. The red leaves had all dropped. The weather was gray and the place looked dreary. I tried to jazz it up by taking a picture beneath a nearby colorful banner.

Old School

It is the nature of photography that conditions are never the same, though the place may be. The light is different and small changes have occurred: someone could have left a glove or trash. In this case, the bright red leaves had turned brown and littered the ground.

Photography is a moment-to-moment depiction of the world, and every moment is different, like snowflakes. What we capture is a temporary moment and nothing more.


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I am fascinated by tall grasses; if anything in nature dances, to me it is the grasses. (I posted grasses in response to the State of Mind Challenge a few weeks ago.) I love the shooshing sound as they move in the wind, as if they are telling me to be quiet and pay attention to them and nothing else. I find it very relaxing to walk among them.

Boardwalk through Marsh

Boardwalk through Marsh

And I see someone else also got the message.

Bridge and grasses

In Contemplation on the Bridge

Yes, I am listening.

grass in the wind

Moving to the Rhythm of the Wind


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Messages of love are everywhere if you look for them. This week’s challenge is One Love, defined this way:

One love refers to the universal love and respect expressed by all people for all people, regardless of race, creed, or color.

–The Urban Dictionary

Love on Wall

A Message

seagull, heart in cement

Seagull with heart…

Rainbow Flag

Love is Everywhere

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I am having some computer problems so I really can’t download any more pictures at the moment. So…for this week’s challenge I had to look through what I have already taken and say, “What conveys optimism?”

I chose a couple of different ways of viewing optimistic. The first is straightforward but humorous. This pig is in the entraceway of a restaurant in Boston: he is sure of getting a good meal!

optimistic pig

A Great Meal is Waiting!

The second is more of a metaphor. I took this on a cold morning before our weekend snowstorm. I felt like crossing the bridge would lead me to sunshine and warmth…

Optimistic bridge, sunny shore

A Bridge to the Sunny Side…

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Once I knew I had the out not to publish every day, I took it!

Title V, distribution box

Title V

I know, not a pretty photo, but a good story. You see, this is the grave of my hopes and dreams…at least that was what I was thinking as I piled up the rocks, a sort-of gift to the people who are buying my house.

In the northeast, many of us have to have our septic system pass a “Title V” inspection when we sell our homes.

TITLE V: Massachusetts law requires that a property that is serviced by a septic system, cesspool or other private waste disposal system be inspected before a home is sold. A septic system has a tank, distribution box, and soil absorption system commonly known as a “leach field”.

I am not getting any proceeds from my sale, so I tried to find the cheapest inspector. My realtor gave me a name. Nobody told me that the reason why the guy was cheaper was that the owner was required to dig up the distribution box, which can be 3 to 6 feet deep in the ground! If you even know where it is located.

My inspector got the septic plans from the board of health and we had to do measurements to find it. Of course it was under a rose bush. I hate killing plants but I had no choice. Once the rose bush was sent to its death, roots up in the woods, my neighbor helped me dig, and dig, and dig through the rocky soil. There was one HUGE rock we couldn’t dig out, but luckily it was next to the distribution box, not on top of it. Thank goodness for my wonderful neighbor, I couldn’t have done it without him (especially since I had sold my spade at a yard sale).

I won’t go into the other complications, but the inspection was finally completed. Now I was left to fill in the hole. That is what this picture shows. I decided to take all the rocks we had dug up and pile them on top to mark the spot, then I took the photo.

What I find eerie is that it mostly looks black and white, with just a bit of a green bush in the background (I did not photoshop it…I don’t know how). The process of selling and cleaning out the house has been a tough one for me, and I really did think, “This is the grave of my hopes and dreams,” and somehow it seems my thoughts were reflected in the photo. The cheery thing is that there is still some life after this; maybe in the future the bush will grow over the barren dirt. I hope so.

Here are the rules for the “Five Photos Five Stories” challenge: “Post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge. (Sporadic posting is alright if you’re unable to post each day.)

And today I decided I will nominate…no one! Because I think it only annoys people.

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Er…Day 2/Day 3? I messed up already. I didn’t get the time to post yesterday. 😦 But the qualifier in parentheses describing the challenge says I’m okay. (No, I didn’t create it…check Day 1…it was already there!)

Here is today’s photo. If you are squeamish, don’t look!

Tomato Hornworm

Tomato Hornworm

The weather has grown cool and fall is officially here according to the calendar, so chances are our green tomatoes will probably never turn red. If it were earlier in the season, this guy would have damaged them anyway.

It’s a tomato hornworm. Right now it is at the large larvae stage when it strips the tomato plant of leaves. I’m wondering if this one will have time to complete its cycle before the weather turns cold and the plant dies anyway. We’ll have to watch and see.

Here are the rules for the “Five Photos Five Stories” challenge: “Post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge. (Sporadic posting is alright if you’re unable to post each day.)

Today I nominate…Pamela!

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So, …my blogging friend, Jo nominated me for this challenge. She had been taking an extended break from blogging, and because I am SOO glad she is back, I’m going to try it. 🙂

yellow and blue benches

Blue and Gold — Together

When I was a sophomore in high school, our class moved to a brand new building. That part was exciting. But at that same time they decided to introduce the concept of “houses.” Because our school colors were blue and gold, they divided us into the “blue house” and “gold house.” How they decided who became “blue” and who because “gold,” I don’t know. I only know we didn’t have a “sorting hat” like in the Harry Potter books. 🙂

I remember not adjusting well to the concept. I was now “separated” from friends I had for years. Each house had its own cafeteria, where we were supposed to eat our lunch. What???!!! We can’t eat with my our friends? “It’s good for you,” the administration said, “Make new friends.” Well, we weren’t going to obey THAT rule!

I don’t remember how we did it, but I remember being a member of the Blue House and sneaking into the Gold House cafeteria to have lunch. It’s 40 years later, and I’m still friends with members of the Gold House who were my friends from grammar school. You just can’t separate true friends.


Here are the rules for the “Five Photos Five Stories” challenge: “Post a photo each day for five consecutive days and attach a story to the photo. It can be fiction or non-fiction, a poem or a short paragraph and each day nominate another blogger for the challenge.
(Sporadic posting is alright if you’re unable to post each day.)

Today I am nominating…Susan!

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As I (finally) wrote a blog post on my other blog the other day, I realized that it also fit for the topic of the weekly photo challenge this week.

Regardless of your religion, most people see an image of the Buddha as a symbol of Peace. This Buddha recently visited my town as part of the Universal Peace Project.

When I posted it on my Facebook page, one of my friends commented that her parents had gone to see it…and I know they are devout Catholics. It certainly was a beautiful sight.

Universal Peace project, Jade Buddha

Jade Buddha

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There are so many things I could do for this post because I get attached to things and I can’t possible keep them all — so many people and things gone but not forgotten. But given the season, I wanted to keep it light and not be too much of a downer. So I decided to do a repost of something I published when I first started this blog.

I dug these boots out of the back of my closet.  I’m trying to clean things out..the usual New Year’s resolutions.  I’d probably keep them for a Halloween costume or something if they still fit, but they are WAY too tight.  Before discarding them, I took a trip down memory lane and decided I would give them a little “memorial”; a photo and an off-the-cuff poem…


Viva Le 80s

The boots were ripped from a dark back closet corner;

layers of dust had dimmed them some,

decades converted playful to garish.

In their heyday

they were club fodder, party wear, perfect companions

for a young woman’s feet as they danced the night away,

hugging and supporting them,

best friends through twenty-something dramas,

crushes, lost boyfriends, flip-flopping passions.

But maturity and years, life’s weight,

layered on and the boots got tight, were obsolete;

they became jokes, banished ghosts of youth.

Back in the light, they need a new home,

a new friend,

New retro-chic feet.

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