Saturday, November 12, 2016

A Place Of Rest And Refuge

"It is by far the grandest of all the special temples of nature I was ever permitted to enter."

~John Muir

"Yosemite Park is a place of rest, a refuge from the roar and dust and weary, nervous, wasting work of the lowlands, in which one gains the advantages of both solitude and society. Nowhere will you find more company of a soothing peace-be-still kind. Your animal fellow beings, so seldom regarded in civilization, and ever rock-brow and mountain, stream, and lake, and every plant soon come to be regarded as brothers, even one learns to like the storms and clouds and tireless winds. This one noble park is big enough and rick enough for a while like of study and aesthetic enjoyment. It is good for everybody, no matter how benumbered with care, encrusted with a mail of business habits like a tree with bark. None can escape its charms. Its natural beauty cleans and warms like a fire, and you will e willing to stay forever in one place like a tree.'

~John Muir
John Of The Mountains:
 The Unpublished Journals Of John Muir

This past week has been unparalleled in it's... tension. The election left me devastated. On edge. More unsure of my future than ever before. And I will say it... depressed. But, reluctantly, Alan and I decided to just get into the car and visit somewhere we had never been before, Yosemite. I wasn't prepared for the stunning beauty. The quiet loveliness that it almost had it's own song. and if it did it would certainly be a hymn. There is such a special spirit to the park, that it was healing just being among the trees, and the waterfalls. It was life, at it's best. It was like the whole Yosemite Valley said to us, "come in, I will hold your pain, at least for a little while." And it did, and for that I am grateful!

 Leaf Of The Day
November 12th 2016

Mood: Quiet


Friday, November 11, 2016

Autumn In Yosemite

Half Dome Outlook
Yosemite National Park
"The magic of autumn has seized the countryside; now that the sun isn't ripening anything it shines for the sake of the golden age; for the sake of Eden; to please the moon for all I know."

~Elizabeth Coatsworth
Personal Geography: Almost An Autobiography

The head noise the last few days has been deafening. The noise from the political talking heads... has... been... deafening. Social media has been deafening. Life noise in general has been deafening! Alan and I needed a day of quiet. A day seeing new horizons. A day that was as far away from the fighting as we could get, so we picked a California destination we hadn't been to before. We chose Half Dome, in the Yosemite Valley. Not surprisingly, we weren't alone! There were many people, not really talking, they were just doing what we were doing, photographing the unbelievable natural beauty of our surroundings!

Truly, all the photos I have ever seen of Half Dome, have not done it justice, and I didn't manage to capture it's stunning beauty as accurately as I wish I could have. I guess I have lost a bit of my creative magic. I'm trying, but I am still dealing with yet one more broken heart in my life, and it's just going to take a while to find my inner happiness again. Personally, I have had my heart broken enough times that I know there is no rushing this process, the best I can hope for is that one day I will wake up, and it won't hurt anymore. It's a one day at a time process. But everything starts somewhere, and yesterday I began the healing at Half Dome!

Just quiet amazing beauty. So needed. So appreciated!

 Leaf Of The Day
November 11th 2016

Mood: Quiet

~Me :) 

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Delicious Autumn Turns To Winter Bitterness

"To move from here to there, sometimes there is a need to suspend the present realties; they can be a distraction."

~Bidemi Mark -Mordi

I am exhausted from the last several days. Spent. I don't want to talk about the election. I just want to pretend it didn't happen. But it did! It did! And I feel foolish, because I saw it coming from the very day Trump rode that escalator down in Trump Tower, to greet the adoring, enthusiastic, paid actor supporters, and announced his candidacy for president! But I tried to believe it wasn't real. It couldn't happen. Rather than listen to that voice deep down inside me that told me, not only was it all real, but it's going to happen. Donald J. Trump will be president, I chose to ignore it, because after all, America wouldn't let it happen.

God, I am so stupid. 

It's over and done now. So what comes next? How will that world look now that we have crossed over into this strange new existence? Well, it feels a lot like autumn, transitioning into winter, or contentment and happiness turning into depression. Something I know a little bit about.

Autumn Turns To Winter... 

I didn't post a leaf of the day yesterday, so I owe the project two.

Leaf Of The Day (A) And (B)
October 10th 2016

Mood: Quiet


Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Abandon All Hope Ye Who Enter Here...

"As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people.
 On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their hearts desire at last
 and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

~H. L. Mencken 

No  Leaf Of The Day for today.
Tune back in tomorrow (Thursday).

Mood: Profoundly SAD


Tuesday, November 08, 2016

History... Made Daily

"Anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that 'my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.'"

~Issac Asimov 

We are finally here. When all is said and done, at the end of today, history will be made. We will have elected either the first woman president, or the first reality star to make it to the presidency. Reality TV? Has it finally gotten to the point that folks can't tell what's real and what isn't? Email? Good thing or the DEVIL? And what about Twitter? Should there be an emotional maturity level that has to be reached before you can use it?


No matter which way the election goes, we will revisit those questions at some point in the near future. Right now I want to go and edit some photographs I took this past week. I want to get a nice, long, hot shower. I want to pet the cats and play laser mouse with them. I want to eat some popcorn, with extra butter, and play my favorite music really loud! I want to dance. I want to sing into a hairbrush. I want to play WordBird. I want to just relax for a little while before I go to bed, because later today will have it's moments, good and bad, and I can only imagine what the history books will say about this chapter in American politics. In American life. 
History will be made.
 Just like it does at the stroke of midnight every single day. 

 Leaf Of The Day
November 8th 2016

Mood: Hopeful

~Me :) 

Monday, November 07, 2016

In One Day

"Today is only one day in all the days that will ever be."

~Ernest Hemingway
For Whom The Bell Tolls

Yesterday, Sunday, was quite a day. We are slightly through the mid-point of autumn, and it's amazingly beautiful outside. Clouds wax and wane, casting haunting shadows one minute, and then filling one's soul with warm sunshine and clarity the next. It's downright enchanting! Can you tell I am in a romantic mood? Well, I am, and I am so happy inside that my soul is doing cartwheels! It looks as though Donald Trump might just lose the election on Tuesday, and nothing could make Alan and I happier!

We spent our day yesterday in Reno, Nevada. We had some reservations about going on the trip, because of the incident that had occurred the night before in Reno at a Donald Trump rally. It seems a young man with an anti-Trump sign, was beaten, and thrown to the ground, basically physically assaulted by Trump supporters who didn't want him to peacefully protest with his small, homemade sign, that simply said... "Republican's Against Trump."

It's been a long, horrible campaign season. Both candidates have gone low, but in my opinion, only one of them has maintained any sort of decorum... Hillary Clinton. Donald Trump has encouraged every kind of negative behavior from his supporters, if they don't like what you have to say, or if you simply disagree with him or his surrogates. Everything from shouting others down, to blatant physical violence. He hides behind his supporters, putting them up to his sick dirty work whenever possible. It's distressing, and it makes me want to push back against the cruelty. I admit, the political climate has brought out the worst in me at times. I try to rise above, but to my own dismay, I find myself almost gleeful, at times, in my negativity.

Hopefully, after Tuesday, it will all be over. The election that is. After a solid week of Donald Trump deliberately lying about the FBI opening a new investigation into Hillary Clinton, because of emails discovered on a laptop computer shared by Anthony Wiener and his wife Huma Abedin, Hillary was cleared of any wrong doing, as the emails discovered turned out to be duplicates of already discovered emails! If Hillary does manage a win, after the partisan actions of James Comey, the current head of the FBI, will Donald Trump accept it? Will his supporters? Or will we see Americans turning on each other in a new civil war?

History will not be kind to James Comey, for how he has handled this whole situation. Both sides have legitimate complaints about his conduct, but Donald Trump is his own worst enemy also, and he has continually shot himself in the foot as his candidacy has moved along the last 18 months! Lies are stupid. You will get caught. Just don't do it. But that advice seems lost on Trump, as he has lied approximately 92 percent of the time he has been running for president, and engaged immature and disturbing deceitful and narcissistic behavior that at times seemed nothing short of sociopathic!

Tuesday will be a long day in the universe. And I am hoping for the best outcome. Hillary Clinton has the experience, in fact she might just be the most experienced person to ever seek the office of the presidency. She has been lied about, called all kinds of derogatory names. Dragged through the mud by fixated republicans. And yet she gets back up every single day. She is a tough woman, who has spent her life in public service! She fought for the medical benefits for first responders, while she was the junior senator from New York, and as Secretary of State helped capture Bin Laden. 

I am hoping on Tuesday Americans make the right decision. I pray the day will go peacefully. And I hope and pray that NO violence occurs. We Americans need each other, and we even loved each other in the days and weeks after 9/11. Then one day we let ourselves be divided. Actually, it probably took more than one day to get us here, but if we let it, one day might be all it takes to unite us again. Hopefully by electing the first female President Of The United States!

Hey... I can dream. Right?  

 Leaf Of The Day
November 7th 2016

Mood: Hopeful


Sunday, November 06, 2016

Off To The Movies... #1. Raiders Of The Lost Ark

"What makes movies magical is not that incredible things happen in them. Incredible things happen in real life.
 No, what makes movies magical is they end right after the incredible thing happens."

~Matteson Perry

When I lived in the Bay Area, I liked to grab my camera and visit the locations of where movies, set in the area, were filmed. It was fun to feel like I was kinda stepping into the worlds of the characters I loved to watch on film. I did a few posts around those photo jaunt adventures, but I didn't really have a specific name for that series, so I am starting over with that project and it's official name will be Off To The Movies

I am starting my new series off with one of my very favorite movies, Raiders Of The Lost Ark. While only a small part of the movie was shot in Stockton, a simple cameo if you will, did feature one of the most beautiful buildings in town, Faye Spanos Concert Hall, on the grounds of the University of the Pacific, was used as the outside of the college Dr. Indiana Jones taught at! And if you pay close attention to that scene, and the one where he leaves to begin his adventure, you will see he flies out of what I think might be the Oakland Airport, and right over of the Golden Gate Bridge! So, one could maybe deduce that Indiana Jones was from my new hometown, Stockton! LOL.

While doing some research into that film, I found out that Spanos Concert Hall was also featured in the Robin Williams film, Flubber! It's such a pretty building, I can see why film makers would feature it. It's in California, but it kind of reminds me of the some of the buildings on the campases of Harvard and Princeton! Making it economical, and yet versatile to setting a tone. So it sets a certain vibe, and filming the buildings on the campus during certain times of the year, like autumn, gives it an especially warm and beautiful feel!

I began photographing movie locations because of how many films had been set in San Francisco. Foul Play. Basic Instinct. Vertigo. And many, many others! So, I thought that our move to the Central Valley was going to make that endeavor really difficult, but to my delight I found that there have been many films shot right here in the Stockton, and the small towns nearby! Among them Cool Hand Luke, American Graffiti, and The Candidate! Recently, when I was visiting El Dorado County, I picked up a visitor's guide, which detailed over 20 different filming locations as well, so I think it's going to be a blast to hunt them all down with my camera!

Stay Tuned!
Leaf Of The Day
November 6th 2016

Mood: Happy

~Me :)