I’ve been thinking of California as it battles COVID-19, especially L.A., and hoping that conditions improve soon. Those thoughts led to photos taken near and on Monterey Peninsula in March 2016 when life felt carefree in most ways. We visited a daughter, then working at Sunset Center, a beautiful venue for performing arts in Carmel, and her spouse. I’m not sure when we might return. I wanted to step into those lovely areas today; perhaps you will enjoy them, also. I have so many more! I felt that the gleaming light there is one of a kind, and could not drink it in enough.
I am in search of color and light today. Sometimes I need liberal doses of enchantment. An external jarring of vibrance that stirs my insides. Beyond my window, it is grey and rainy–after all, it’s winter. That is mostly alright with me. Just not recently. I am feeling wrung out by the trauma of my country and its people being harmed by the mobbing of our Capitol building and its results, the ongoing upheaval; struggles with chronic health issues; and life being lived on a somewhat dizzying edge during pandemic times.
We are all worn out. So, then: flowers. Who can deny their scintillating beauty, their bold good cheer? Such varieties! Their innate charms go far, and they have capability to offer hope of the steady seasons’ cycles and refreshed thoughts of finer human aspirations.
Because I am missing Seattle, here we go on a virtual visit. The name could be attached to the land of Oz….but it is not. “Emerald” refers to a preponderance of greenery–towering evergreens, among other plants and trees– displayed all year around. This was a last fun trip before the pandemic kept all more homebound. We have chosen the beautiful, invigorating Seattle for New Year’s a few times and it has always been worth it. We’ve also visited family in the area and at 19 I lived there so I feel quite at home, though it so much bigger than my hometown of Portland (we are very green, too). I was disappointed to not go up there this year.
If you’ve seen some of these shots before, perhaps you can enjoy them, again. If you have never been there in person I hope you’re enticed to explore the city, yourself, some day! With little commentary, let’s begin…
Above shots: Experience Music Project; architect, Frank O. Gehry.(Not easy climbing up and standing on a ledge… but fun!)
I have had a great time revisiting memories–one good reason to travel is that, with photography, you get to almost go there once more. But I am so looking forward to another in-person visit. In the meantime, more local day trips are good. I am hoping you also will hop in a car, ride your bike or head out on foot to open spaces, to be safe. It never fails to cheer me in all the ways that matter. See you for another meander next week!
Yesterday I was slowed by a health matter but today I return to a favorite place, Steigerwald National Wildlife Refuge in Washington State. It’s been far too long since I walked those trails, gawked at hordes of birds and heard the wild grasses rustle in the wind. Above are two shots; please move the arrows to see full shot. Some of these photographs were taken March 2018, others January 2019. No matter the season, I am completely enamored of this place. The wind is strong, the sky so big. But since it’s been closed, I’m eager to revisit it here.
In 2019 the $22 million habitat restoration began; it is not open for another year or two The floodplain of this Lower Columbia River area is being reconfigured so the refuge will be reconnected to the natural ebb and flow of the mighty Columbia. Levees will be lowered to their natural height. Soon, species of salmon and trout and lamprey, as well as other wildlife will greatly benefit. Nine hundred acres are being restored so, although Marc and I miss these long walks and birdwatching, we have great appreciation for work being done.
I am sharing a neighborhood walk today–its colors, style and Halloween scenes. Since moving from historic Irvington neighborhood March 2019 after over 25 years, I’ve made it a point to return there each new season. Some of the graceful houses are over one hundred years old; Queen Anne, Period Revival Bungalow/Craftsman and Prairie School styles predominate. I love the architecture, towering trees, lush lawns. Enjoy the views!
An imperturbable demeanor comes from perfect patience. Quiet minds cannot be perplexed or frightened, but go on in fortune and misfortune at their own private pace like a clock during a thunderstorm.—Robert Louis Stevenson