'scene' along the way, connections, finding my way, friends, growing old, life, life goes on, perseverance, photography, road trip, travel

Turning the page…

I’m not in Kansas anymore.  Florida either.  Lots of you, probably the majority of you, may look out your windows to a view like this.  But not me, not in Florida or Maryland either.  And I do spend a lot of time enjoying the beauty around me in Florida, but this scenery is just amazing to me.  A simple drive to run an errand and I’m looking at lovely vistas all around me.  It was an absolutely beautiful day yesterday.  Just seeing the sun was a treat after the rain that’s been following me around.  Starting the day talking with a friend over coffee, and then winding down the day with cribbage on the porch, plus a glass of wine, is very special.   As is this friendship, which began so long ago that it’s just always been there.  Long ago we talked of the future and anticipated the life that was waiting for us.  And now here we are, our stories have been written.  We’ve turned the page and are now facing challenges that we never thought of when we were young, but we are facing them together…05-20-19websterlakeview05-20-19websterlakeview205-20-19websterlakeview305-20-19websterlakeview405-20-19NH405-20-19NH505-20-19NH605-20-19websterlakecemetery05-20-19websterlakecemetery205-20-19websterlakechipmunk

'scene' along the way, finding my way, flowers, friends, Heros, live and learn, moments, perseverance, photography, road trip, strangers become friends

On the road…

Wednesday was my first real travel day, and I employed my new rule for myself right from go.  I didn’t leave in the wee small hours of the morning, a decision made easy since there were people there to say good morning and good-bye to.  And to thank also!  Plus my drive from Charleston, SC to York, PA was going to put me in the DC area at a horrible time from the point of view of traffic no matter when I left.  So the goal was to avoid the fog and drive in the daylight, and when I looked at the GPS there was an alternative route that avoided the DC/Baltimore area all together, so I took it!  And yes, it was scenic, but there were only two lanes, and trucks with issues going up and down the hills.  So the drive was pretty but more work than cruising along on 95.  By the time I’d been on the road for 9 hours and still had three more to go I wondered if the whole thing had been that great of an idea.  But all in all I think it was.

And stopping at the rest stops has proved to be a brilliant idea, I wish I could remember who to thank for that heads up.  As I crossed into NC in the Charlotte area and stopped at the rest stop there I found a kindred spirit, a wanna-be camper.  Except her history involves driving trailers loaded with horses or cows, so she is way ahead of me in the towing department.  She told me that since working at the rest stop she has noticed a big increase in women who are camping on their own.  So maybe I’m not nuts, or else I have a lot of company.  She said that she met the most interesting woman ever through her job.  This woman came into the rest stop and was distressed that she had come through a tunnel in her travels and damaged the satellite on the roof of her vehicle.  She was a German lady and had had her vehicle made for her there.  My new friend said that it was a Mercedes camper, but looked like a taller version of a Hummer.  She had the thought that no one would ever bother her in this vehicle because it looked like an assault vehicle, LOL.  My friend told her that she knew someone, who knew someone, who might be able to help her, and she sent her over to see him.  She promised to check on her after work, and if she had to leave the vehicle overnight she wanted this woman to stay with her, a thought that upset her son no end.  “Mom,” he said, “you don’t know this woman.”  She thought that was funny.  At any rate this lady had camped in that vehicle in Europe, in Iran in the desert, and all through South America.  I guess she was on her North American leg of her journey at that point.  When my new friend checked after work the woman and the repairman and family were all having dinner together.  He had ordered the part for her and she’d be on her way the next day, plus he had the camper all hooked up for her to spend the night in it.  A very unique camper for sure, and far more adventurous than I will ever be.

And now I have met the most interesting woman ever, and I don’t mean the German lady, but the woman I met by chance by stopping at that particular welcome center on that particular day.  She is a two-time breast cancer survivor who followed her beloved doctor to Boston, to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where she was treated after he had moved his practice there. After beating cancer twice she was invited to participate in a bike ride to raise money for the cancer center, a ride from Boston to Provincetown on Cape Cod.  To participate you had to raise money by having sponsors, and she told her friends who sponsored her that if she didn’t finish she would reimburse them their money, but once she had raised $20,000 she decided that she’d damned well better finish the ride.  So she rented a cottage on Cape Cod, hired a trainer, and got serious about getting herself ready.  She connected with a bike shop owner who ordered her a lightweight  bike frame that you could lift with one finger.  He told her she’d never make it on the bike she had brought with her.  The upshot of all this is that yes, she finished the ride, and so did her doctor.  They were the only two from their entire group who did finish.  A news crew followed her for 4 weeks as she trained, which was a condition of her participation also, so that her story might inspire other women as they deal with their own challenges with this horrible disease.  A most interesting and inspiring woman indeed.

And it was uplifting to hear the praises of the treatment available at Dana-Farber on the very day that my favorite old friend from my favorite old neighborhood was receiving treatment there even as we were talking.  I never know what my day will bring, and most are good days, but some are better than others.05-08-19azaleafeature

a second look, Bayport, birds, boats, finding my way, Florida wildlife, nature, perseverance, photography, road trip, sunrise

Taking a break…

Why do I stress so much over packing for a trip?  Always, no matter where I’m going.  And I take too much.  Always, no matter where I’m going.  But this time I am heading north to pick up my new trailer, and I suddenly realized that it will be 100% empty when I arrive to take it.  So I started packing up all my extra spatulas, silverware, paper products, basic stuff that I have duplicates of anyhow.  Seemed like a no brainer.  A win-win.  Oh wait, towels, packed some of those. And laundry supplies since I have extra.  Cleaning supplies too, again, there is so much of that stuff in this place that I probably will never have to buy it again. Then I put the seats up in the Pacifica and found out that there is an incredible amount of storage space in that car.  Lots more than it seemed with the stow away seats stowed away.  I hadn’t had the seats up since I bought it, and all the bins that I had in the back were sliding around back there, and now they have now disappeared into the space behind the third row seat.   They won’t be sliding now, and they stack, two side-by-side, and three high.  Now I have empty bins and it’s tempting to fill them up, because I can.

This sort of thing makes me nuts, and I was stewing about it at 2:30 AM, which left me plenty of time to go out for the sunrise at Bayport this morning, just to give my brain a rest.  But it seemed that everyone had that same idea.  There was a traffic jam at the docks, a line up of cars with their boats behind them, all waiting to get on the water.  And multiple fishermen on the pier where I usually have full reign to compose shots.  I figured it out eventually.  It’s Saturday!  I’ll bet I worked just about every Saturday for 7 years.  That explains it.  The sunrise wasn’t much, but this heron decided it was time for a close up.  Now I’m back to packing, those empty bins are calling me…05-04-19bayportsunrise405-04-19bayportsunrise105-04-19bayportsunrise205-04-19bayportsunrise305-04-19greatblue1

a second look, finding my way, on closer examination, perseverance, photography, road trip, sky, strangers, sunset, technology, the big picture, travel, unintended images

Surprise…

I’ll admit it, I was disappointed.  I had decided to go to Green Key beach for the sunset at the last possible minute.  At 4 miles down the road it was my only hope for a setting with multiple possible shots, talking about composition here.  I’m not so willing to go miles and miles lately, maybe it’s the anticipation of my first snowbird excursion which is coming up soon. When I arrived I walked to my left from the parking lot which is when I saw that the tide was up and the long shots of the sunset colors in the wet sand weren’t going to happen.  So I took this shot…4=27-19greenkeysunsetAnd then walked to the other side of the beach for the main event, but people kept photobombing the actual sunset shot…4=27-19greenkeysunset24=27-19greenkeysunset3But, as usual, I was chatting with another photographer, so it was a pleasant way to spend an hour or so, but I wasn’t concentrating as much on the pictures I was taking as I was with our conversation.  So when I got home and looked at my photos in the computer I was pleasantly surprised.  Sometimes you don’t know what you have when it’s right there in front of you…

connections, egrets, finding my way, Florida wildlife, friends, nature, Osprey, perseverance, photography, simple things, strangers

New friends…

Part of the charm of heading over to the rookery is that there is a Twisty Treat ice cream stand right there!  So you can tell yourself that you are going to take pictures, but in the back of your mind you are thinking ice cream.  Yesterday I had my priorities straight, I got the ice cream first!  Okay, you do have to drive across the parking lot and tuck your car in behind the buildings to unload, but I then found myself marching towards the fence with another gal, a like-minded gal, because we were both lugging a three step ladder and cameras with nice long lenses.  It must have looked like we planned it.  So I made a new friend yesterday, and had a very nice time as we took pictures of the chicks, and talked about photography in general.  I told her about our camera club, FCCP, Florida Center for Creative Photography, and I told her that there are a lot of people my age in the group, but younger people also.  Mentioned because she is young, the years that I wonder where they went are still waiting to unfold for her.  But she said she likes people my age, and at that moment we were kindred spirits.  The big difference was that when the osprey we had been watching hover in the air over the rookery finally made his dive and came up with a fish, her camera battery didn’t die like mine did.  The most dramatic moment of a nice afternoon and I missed it.  But really I didn’t miss anything, I made a new friend…4-15-19twochicks4-15-19thisbig4-15-19ospreyegretfight34-15-19ospreyegretfight24-15-19ospreyegretfight4-15-19incoming

a second look, finding my way, healing, history, memories, moments, perseverance, photography, unintended consequences

Hokey Pokey…

“You put your right foot in, you take your right foot out”…  The song came to mind this morning as I sat in the dark and quiet with my coffee.  At about a month since I actually moved myself into my new place, as opposed to just moving my stuff into my new place, I think I’ve got it settled.  Maybe.  But all this arranging and rearranging in here started because of how dark it was out in the Florida room.  And the fact that I realized that the windows would take tension rods so I wasn’t going to have to actually install anything.  That’s what got me started.  I made a cat quilt wall hanging for my mother years ago, and it found a home hanging over the ugly, metal trimmed window out there,  It looked cute, I thought.  But the unintended consequence was that it made the kitchen work space darker.  So take it down or figure out how to ‘dress’ that kitchen window? 04-08-19catquilt04-08-19HLshelvesI wasn’t sure I’d stick with this peg board until I came across two of my all time favorite pictures, one of Charley with a 4 pound lobster he ordered in Provincetown years ago, and the one of me making a very rude, and might I add out-of-character, gesture.  I believe they both were taken on the same trip home years ago.  I didn’t realize that I had copies of those pictures, and the bird photo holder that’s never held a photo must have been waiting for this moment.  We look so young.  So it’s still a little dark in that kitchen corner, but for now I’ll just turn the light on and enjoy the memory.  Charley in the kitchen is so appropriate, he was a great cook.  The puzzle pieces are still falling into place.  It may not be time to do the Hokey Pokey and turn myself around quite yet, but it’s getting there…04-08-19Docandme