Thursday, January 5, 2012

Road Trip

Those words mean different things to different people I suppose.  For some there is a bit of excitement attached, a spot of adventure, for others annoyance. For me, there is always a sense of purpose behind them, and usually an air of hurriedness - as opposed to a vacation, the purpose of which is to relax. On a road trip you are on a mission.

Usually this means minimal stops along the way.  Fortunately for me, Mommo's bladder is no stronger than mine so we are in agreement about relaxing the standard for potty stops.  Thinking about the timetable, I almost packed the camera away for the road trip out here.  I mean, what's there to see on the interstate, really. Endless roads? Traffic? There's just not much to shoot sitting in the passenger seat of a moving vehicle ... or is there?  About that time it struck me as a challenge to find things that scream road trip ... things that aren't your typical passenger seat shots. So the camera went in the front seat with me.

The weather wasn't very co-operative, although it could have been worse.  For most of the trip we had grey skies and drizzle.  I think we were in Georgia before I saw my first likely subject.  I looked up at a gas stop and saw a tractor-trailer in front of me.  It wasn't the truck, but it's cargo that caught my attention.  This shot may have no artistic merit, but I want you to look at the size of those tires!  There is no top on that trailer and you can plainly see only 3 tires can fit in that whole trailer!  I thought that was worth documenting.

Of course, the artist in me wasn't going to be denied. In this one you don't get the sense of scale, but the textures and geometric shapes intrigued me.

And knowing how I am about Abstracts, it shouldn't surprise you that the tires weren't the only cargo that I found interesting.

Having Sister Crow as a totem animal, naturally anything bright and shiny will catch my eye.  When the sun finally showed her face this stainless trailer was brilliant.

This Water Tower in Shreeveport reminded me of a Star Wars type alien critter.

And I'm told this is called a Mix Master

Although I much prefer living in the country, Urban landscapes do appeal to my photographer's eye.

And finally we arrive in Texas and stop at a truck stop/tourist trap.  I believe this horny horned toad is the mascot of one of the colleges.
Form, and elegant lines always seem to catch my attention, and this marble sink in the facilities was no exception.

 For all the elegance of the restroom, the place had fun and fanciful Old West feel to it.  This was the same place that I found the Christmas "Boots" in. 

Check out the star on the chair.  It's a Lone Star.  I expect you'll be seeing it a lot; they slap it on just about everything out here ;) including the furniture.

I hope I was able, with this set of pictures, to share the feel of the open road with you and a bit of the adventure of exploring exotic new places ;)  Traveling can be fun, if you don't forget to enjoy the process instead of seeing it as downtime that is necessary to do (or get to) the things you really WANT to do (or places you want to be).

Sorry about my lack of response so far.  Seems I've been have some connectivity problems, but I believe we have those worked out now.  Hopefully I really AM back now ;)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

SPOTTED! Christmas Eve, just outside of Dallas, TX

 You may say there's no such thing as Santa
After Christmas Eve in Texas I believe.

And it looks like Santa may have gone high tech ;) just sayin'

Yes, I'm just a little bit slow getting this exciting news posted, but it's the holidays and I've been a bit busy what with company and nursing duties.  This post has been ready for two days, but my computer wasn't connecting for some reason that seems to have resolved itself today.  So here I am, finally, to say ...





 Merry Merry Jolly Jolly Happy Happy Ho Ho to all of you ... Texas Style!

I hope all of you are having a wonderful holiday season, no matter what holiday you are celebrating at this time of year wherever you are.  May the new year bring you peace,  joy, and love. From my blog to yours Happy New Year.

I've been busy here and already have lots to share with you, but for now I just wanted to sneak in and wish everyone a happy holiday. And let's be safe out there!


Friday, December 16, 2011

Westward Ho the Wagons

Mustang Sally is off on a Wild West Adventure the last place anyone that knows her would expect to find her ... in the middle of Cowboy country. TEXAS! ... yeah me - I KNOW right? Who'da thunk it? Certainly not  me until 2 days ago.

Without  going through the whole list of convoluted relationships (one day I'll have to do that for y'all, you may find it entertaining) Let's just say Mommo and I are now at her other daughter's house south of Dallas due to a family emergency.  We'll call this Sis White Rabbit for the purposes of this blog.

White Rabbit's FIL had a stroke and has just recently came home from the hospital.  She had hired help but the help bailed on her before she even got started.  Her and her husband have been giving him 24/7 care for about a week all by themselves.  Because the FIL has been in the hospital, then nursing home for a few months and they've been going back and forth between work/home/hospital/nursing home the whole time, things have been pretty neglected on the homefront -there are only so many hours in a day.  White Rabbit is not working now, to be home with FIL but hasn't been able to leave the house for more than a week because someone must be there all the time. 

One of the coolest things about White Rabbit is that she's so laid back.  She's a fighter when she needs to be, not a push over at all - she'll tell you what's on her mind, but she doesn't sweat the small stuff.  A sort of mirror reverse of Sis, back in Carolina, who lives and breathes the details until she can't see the forest for the trees and plays passive/aggressive until she explodes. But now the stress in her voice is apparent. She needed help, so when she called Sunday Mommo and I packed up the truck, and Monday morning we headed out.  We arrived this afternoon (it's Tuesday - I won't be able to post this until at least tomorrow)

Texas is already turning out to be different than I expected, from the terrain to the temperature.  I expected flat, sandy, dusty, desert.  It's not, nor did any part of it seem to be along our route.  There's gentle rolling hills and you can see for MILES.  It's a very wide open space.  I'll have to post pictures, of course, and you can all enjoy the experience with me.  It's so very different from anyplace I've been before.  I feel very exposed.  I'm used to trees- not that they don't have them here but they're few comparatively speaking.  They have about 25 acres here ... and you can stand in the yard and see it ALL! Very trippy to a girl from the woods.  And I'm still cold  >smiles wryly<  yes, I know how much colder it is where some of you are.  I KNOW I'm a wimp about cold, that's why I keep moving further south.

With no job and no prospects back in Carolina, I'd fallen into a rut.  Sis thought it would be a good experience for me to come out here for while.  She's says I need to get out there in the world and off the chair in front of my computer.  She's probably right.  I always like to explore new places.  And I do love living in the country and it definitely isn't "city" out here.  I may feel like a foreigner, maybe even an alien, but I can already see there are things I'll probably like here.  And it surely will  be a learning experience. 

And though I haven't felt very chatty the last few months, I hope you'll forgive that and join me as I learn about yellow roses, blue eyes, oil wells, and rednecks, um ... I mean cowboys... out here in in Lone Star State. Can you imagine? Me.  In Texas.  If I were someone else, somebody that knew how my mind works, I'd find that highly amusing.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Reflections My Glass

                                                     ... and other trick ponies

Father Time
trapped in a glass cage
reflecting an image
that is but a shadow of my self
a moment forever frozen
caught in a time that is not ...
in the space between now and then
Sunbeams fracture
into shards of color
the mystical crystal hues
form a dancing rainbow
the essence of a moment
holding its breath
waiting for it's magic to be noticed
The color of music on the wind
A mirror
shows the road that lies behind
mere memories
a reflection of the past
distorted by time and distance
As clear as glass they say
yet it seems
transparency is in the eye of the beholder
the solid illusion of
apparent opacity
reveals an altered perception
a dream
one might even say

a psychedelic experience
Psychdelic Forest Faerie
Although I did do the cropping and post processing, this last photo was taken by a friend with my camera.

This weeks theme is "Made of Glass"
stop by
drop a link
share the magic

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Wal-Mart: A Parallel Universe

Parallel Universe

Click the button, join the fun ... you know you want to
Okay, blogger refuses to link the button today or anything ELSE now ... sigh

Some of you are aware that I abhor Wal-Mart from my comments at your blogs, but I don't think I've ever talked about it here on mine.  I don't talk much about politics here either.  I can't stand either one, but I do have my fair share (some would say even more than my share) of experience with, and opinions on both.  My attention, in many cases unwillingly,  is often focused in either or both of those directions. 

I see Wal-Mart as the Evil Empire.  The one that gives a face to my Corporate Hate (an honor it shares with Exxon Mobile).  I believe that at the root of all that is wrong with our country, and possibly the world, is just plain and simple GREED.  Corporations are the biggest manifestation of this IMO. 

Apart from that collective feeling, I despise Wal-Mart as an individual entity too.  I don't like the way they do business.  I don't like the way they treat their employees.  I don't like their discriminating policies.  I don't like that they think they are above the law.  I don't like that courts seem to agree with them.  I don't like their cheap ass low quality merchandise.  And I don't like to be among the unwashed masses that shop there. 

And I don't care if that sounds snobby and elitist.  Have you been there?  Then you KNOW what I'm talking about.  I get dragged in there fairly regularly ... with those members of my family and friends who do not share my disregard.  Look around any Wal-Mart for a few minutes and you will know just how we ended up with that idiot cowboy in the White House for two terms.  And yes you CAN tell just by looking.  Ever seen one of those People of Wal-Mart videos?  If not, The Empress posted one recently here that you can view, but fair warning ... what is seen cannot be unseen.  When people do not even know how dress themselves properly what can you expect?

Anyways, Tattoo (the nephew) needed a ride to Wal-Mart today and I was the lucky chauffeur.  I brought my camera with me  remembering that The Empress had dared encouraged me to take some pictures of my own at Wal-Mart.  I hadn't decided yet if I would, but I brought my camera just in case I decided in favor.  I dropped Tattoo off at the door, then went to find a parking space.

Our theme this week is Parallel.  Just before I had talked to Tattoo I had been searching through my archives, looking for something to post, and not finding much I was happy with.  You see, we've done this theme before and I had already posted all of my best work on this subject then.  So this was rattling around inside my brain while I was parking the car.  Turning off the ignition  I was looking toward the entrance, wondering if I should go in or just wait outside when I noticed the shopping carts (top photo)  ... with all of those parallel lines.

Thinking to myself, You know,  there's only been the one time I did a theme "to order".  What if ... ? ... an abstract maybe ... and I found myself removing the lens cap and getting out of the car.  Before I'd gotten all the way out of the door however, the grille on the truck directly in front of me caught my eye, like ... yeah, speaking of parallels ... so of course I snapped it.  I had bent over and gotten very close  to the grille while I was shooting, and hadn't noticed that random weird guy the next row over who was watching and laughing at me. 

When I straightened and saw him he just shook his head, still chuckling.  I grinned and said, "Um, I have an assignment ... parallels ... and the grille, it had lots of them" LOL.  You'd think I'd get used to people looking at me strange over the things I photograph, but no, sometimes I still feel the need to explain ;)  He got in his car and left while I mosied over to shoot the shopping carts, but while I was looking at him I noticed something else.

The Night has a Thousand Eyes

He was parked next to a truck that had one of those cabs made out of what looks kinda like quilted steel.  So after trying a couple of different perspectives on the shopping carts I shot one of that and then wandered over that way for a closer view.

Getting back to my car my eyes swept the parking lot ... everywhere I looked I saw more parallels.  

I didn't even need to look very far.  I looked down and noticed my own headlight.  Can you imagine the fun I would have had if I'd had a camera like this in the 70's?

So Empress, I did get around to taking pictures at  Wal-Mart, but I never got farther than the parking lot ... and I forgot all about the people.  And I think that's probably a good thing LOL.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Goodbye seems to be the hardest word


RIP my friend

So ... that should explain where I've been.  She was doing a bit better, still not eating much but getting around more and even woke up playful Tuesday morning.  Later in the day though she got sick again and went downhill fast, and 24 hours later it was all over.  It's hard to lose your best friend, but harder still to watch them suffer.
 I'm thankful she was spared much of that.

Then Saturday we had a storm that knocked out our internet service.  Lightening struck somewhere close by and knocked the power out for a minute.  Must have fried the modem because the internet would not come back up afterwards.  They're supposed to come late this afternoon to fix it.  I really hope so, I'm missing my bloggie buddies.  

I'll be around to visit soon as we're back up again.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Sometimes, it's all about Texture

... but a lot of times it's about something else entirely, and the texture is just a bonus.  These pictures, for instance, are actually about Life.  Appropriately ... or not ... they were taken at a cemetery.  This is a Resurrection Fern.  Yes, it is growing in the fork of that tree, no dirt required.  Don't worry though, no harm will come to the tree.  It is an air fern, it takes it's nutrients from the air and water. 

It's name comes from the fact that it survives periods of drought by curling up and appearing dead.  Then when it get just a little water the fern will uncurl and reopen, appearing to resurrect.

You know the drill ... click the button ... join the fun
This weeks theme is "Rough".  With that in mind I'm going to suggest that if you are squeamish, or have creepy crawly phobias, you might want to skip this post and come back in a day or two.  "Rough" is not always pretty, and after these first few shots I have some that might creep you out.  I don't want to be accused of giving anyone nightmares.  So consider yourself warned:  There be monsters. 

Not your every day sand castle.  The lighting was WAY harsh when I came upon this construction at the beach on  Sullivan's Island, but you know, sometimes you just have to take what you can get ;)  It was there and so was I, and even if "I" could have waited for the morning light that would have made this picture SO much better, the tide would have taken it long before dawn arrived.  This baby was big too,  maybe 3 or 4 feet high with a similar diameter.  It kind of seems odd to think of wet sand as rough, nor would sand castles be the first thing that came to my mind at that word either, but you know if the shoe fits....

Same day, same beach.  The tide pool and it's path to the sea was my subject here, but the barnacle covered rocks pretty much steal the show

Wandering the beach along the inter-coastal waterway while my friends were casting nets for shrimp I came across this one and titled it "The Boneyard".  It's grizzly, and gross, and kind of haunting.  To this day I can't explain why it caught my eye, or I felt the need to record it, but if this guy didn't have it rough, no one ever has ;)

Like the Resurrection fern, this critter also "curls up and appears dead".  I can assure you this one is not actually dead although he does look rough, he's just "playing possum".  It looks like he may have had a narrow escape before I stumbled up and surprised him.  I'd always heard about this trick but had never seen it before.  In other shots taken at the same time he's eyes were a bit more open, a paw or his tail in a slightly different position.  Yet I never saw him move the entire time I was shooting.  I was careful not to get too close (I have a very good zoom lens).  I hear opossums can carry rabies and can be very vicious.  They prefer, however, to play dead and hope you'll go away.  After just a few shots I did just that.  He looked like he needed to find his way home.

Some of you are going to hate me now, but I think I've saved the best for last.

Remember way back there at the beginning when I warned you there be monsters?

If you're going to freak out ... go ahead and leave now

Go on, it's okay, nobody will think less of you


Are you ready?

It's time ...

This little guy ... what was that?  Yes, LITTLE.  I told you I have a very good zoom lens on my camera.  He's really smaller than the eraser on the end of your pencil.  See those "rough rocks" he's climbing on?  That is the edge of a cement sidewalk that looks perfectly smooth to the naked eye.  I LOVE my camera.

For you new folks, I quite often will throw in what has become known as "the obligatory spider shot" in my picture posts.  I've been neglecting that lately.  I don't usually do a disclaimer, but these big eyed jumping spiders tend to freak people out.  They are scarey looking up close.

Go see Carmi @ Written Ink for more "Rough" stuff.  Don't worry, nobody else is as warped as I am.