Apple crisp and pumpkin pies, colors to warm the soul. The rich tapestry of nature rolls on …
Alight with color, the world of winter lurks in the corners.
This challenge subject is all about capturing the roads, walks, trails, rails as we move from one location to another.
I feel I should mention that this may be one of the top five favorite pictures I’ve ever taken. The color of the sky, the perfection of the flowers on the branches. And all of this on the front lawn of my dentist’s office while Garry was having his teeth cleaned.
There’s always a picture waiting to be taken.
Olympus E-PM2 Super Control Panel (SCP) The Olympus Super Control Panel is a special hidden control system. As you can see above, it makes viewing and changing settings on your camera really easy. …
If you have Olympus PEN cameras, from the PL-1 to the latest OM-D, this is information that you can use to turn on a “one menu does everything” for your camera. Indispensable, but hard to find information!
I’ve read a lot of posts that wax nostalgic about the old days, of trips down country roads at a slower pace. Driving through little towns. Past farms, fields, woods, and streams. No super highways with their sterile rest stops and fast food outlets. Driving through the real America.
Those were the days, we say. The good old days which we remember from the back seat. Where we were pinching and pummeling our siblings while nagging our parents to stop for ice cream. Or asking the deathless question: “Are we there yet?”
Everyone who ever waxed poetic about the good old days of travel should take the drive from Jackman, Maine to Danville, Vermont.
It’s 231 miles from Jackman to Danville unless you travel through Canada, which we did not want to do. Just going through the customs checkpoints would have added hours to the journey. Unless you go through Canada, there’s only one route. Take 201 from Jackman to Skowhegan. Hook a right on route 2. Drive. Keep driving. Behind pickup trucks and aging SUVs veering erratically while never exceeding 28 miles per hour … the exact point at which the car changes gears. The engine lugging relentlessly as it tries to find the spot.
There is food to eat and gasoline to be pumped as you pass through all those little towns. There’s always someplace selling pizza, baked goods, sandwiches, and cold drinks. Usually a toilet, too. You will get a chance to visit every little town in the mountains between Maine and Vermont. I found myself staring at the map, hoping a faster road would magically appear.
Talk about ambivalence. In the middle of October the trees look as if they are lit from within. The mountains are covered in autumnal glory so magnificent it looks surreal. Reconcile that with an overwhelming urge to blow those pokey drivers off the road. Cognitive dissonance, here we come.
“Wow,” I say, “That’s incredibly beautiful” as we loop around a breathtaking curve in the road. I’m trying to control my peevish aggravation with the current slow driver riding his brakes in front of us.
They must lie in wait for us. As we are about to pass, they pull out in front of us, then slow to a crawl. The beauty of the mountains, lakes, streams, trees, sky, clouds, villages, farms, towns morph into a seamless continuity as we crawl down the mountains behind drivers whose feet never leave the brakes.
It’s a religious experience, but not in a good way. Aggravation wars with admiration for nature and a mounting need to drive at a normal speed. Garry is exhausted, irritable, frustrated. I’m empathizing, even offering to drive.
It took most of a day to make the trip. We crawled through Maine. Crept through New Hampshire. Limped into Vermont.
Our most startling moment was looking up and seeing a sign — a huge, brightly painted sign — that said: “WELCOME TO MEXICO.” Mexico, Maine. There were no Mexican restaurants, or at least none we could find. Lots of Chinese, though. After we drove out of Mexico, we came upon another huge, bright sign. “WELCOME TO MEXICO,” it said.
“Didn’t we just leave Mexico?”
“Maybe,” says Garry, “this is the village and that was the town?”
“Or something.” I wondered where the rest of North America had gone. Never mind. It was time to face the inevitable. Garry and I had to fill the gas tank. Ourselves.
Back home — a town which had seemed rural and quaint, but now seemed sophisticated and metropolitan — gas stations provide service. Not the case in very rural New England. Together, Garry and I pondered the problem. We had to remove the gas cap, which was stuck. Garry looked at me. I would manage the gas cap.
I pressed. Twisted. It was the child-proof lid from Hell. Eventually, it came off. Whooping in triumph, I fed our bank card into the pump’s reader and selected the grade of gasoline. Garry, feeling his moment had come, removed the pump from its hook, stuck it in the hole and pressed. Gasoline started feeding into the tank. When it snapped loose, Garry looked at me.
“Does this mean it’s full?”
“Yes,” I exalted. “We did it. We put gas in our car!”
We gave each other a high-five and continued our journey. We have developed a deep appreciation for the interstate highway system. And lost every trace of nostalgia for the old days of travel.
I’ve decided to do this once weekly. I will endeavor to put it out every Wednesday. Because Wednesday is the middle of the week. I have no better reason, but anyone who can give me one, I’ll use it.
I’m not quite sure why I decided to do this prompt. I’m sure it started with the Daily Prompt — which is limp, unimaginative, and sometimes slightly offensive.
Maybe I was lulled into thinking it was easy by how many other bloggers manage one or more challenges, yet apparently retain active lives away from the computer. I’m sure, after all my blathering about how feeble WordPress’s editors are, I needed to prove myself less feeble.
I am not convinced I am achieving that goal, but I am trying. However ineptly. My effort for this week follows.
Please try to add your own links. If you aren’t sure, put your link in a comment and I will add it manually at the first opportunity. Don’t get too bent out of shape if it takes me a few hours. I am not always at the computer. It may seem I am. but actually, I’m away for whole days sometimes. I know you don’t believe me.
A TALE OF NAN: OLD DOG, OLD BLOGGER
I remind me of my little dog Nan. She is 15 and deaf. Going blind. She isn’t always sure who we are, or for that matter, who she is.
Which is why sometimes, in the middles of attempting to go down the stairs, she decides she can fly and leaps into the air. It’s super dog … splat. I try to grab her and not let her go down on her own. Every time she splats, my guilt level goes off the charts.
That’s analogous to how I decided to create a prompt/challenge. I thought I was super blogger.
A few days ago, we had Bonnie and Nan groomed. They smell good, feel good … and it won’t last. I wanted to get a few pictures, but as usual, it went badly.
The moment I pull out a camera, they charge forward. I drafted Garry to hang on to them … then he had the brilliant idea of tempting them with biscuits. These are the results.
I like telling stories linked to pictures. To help the process along, every Wednesday or until I throw in the towel, I’ll publish a picture and write something about it. Some days, it may be long, others day, just a couple of sentences. You can use any of my pictures — or one of your own — as the prompt. If you find the subject interesting, by all means, extrapolate.
Please link it back to this post (ping back) so other people can find it.
Story. Words. Poetry, prose, fact, or fiction. A couple of lines, a fanciful tale.
Pictures. Video if that’s your thing. Scanned pictures from your scrap-book. Weird pictures from the internet. Cartoons. Pictures of your family vacation and how the bear stole your food. Any picture you ever took and would like to talk about
Your trip to Paris. You flight from Irkutsk. You favorite dog, cat, ferret, cockatoo. The weird boyfriend you had in high school. The last book you read, the next book you plan to read, why you don’t read books (but you write them)(don’t write them)(would like to write them).
Television shows, movie stars, classic film, history, language. Fiction, non-fiction. Everything, anything as long as you include a picture and some text.
It sounds simple because it is simple. Every picture has a story or ought to. There are no rules. You are free to follow my lead, ignore me, follow someone else’s idea. Any picture plus some text will do it. Short or long, truth or fiction. Prose or poetry.
One final thing: If you want to get notices of these posts, you’ll have to subscribe to Serendipity. I’ll try to title relevant posts so you can easily recognize them.
When the moon is full, I take on my wolf form. I know not what I do, but I carry the scent of deep woods and moss when I return to myself.
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