Cee’s Black and White Photo Challenge: Any Kind of Seating

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Any Kind of Seating

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A few months ago, in that sliver of time between the pandemic’s summer lull and the current surge, I took care of a few neglected health care appointments. I had not been to these two facilities in at least a year.

What a difference a year…and a pandemic…can make.

The waiting areas were stark and impersonal. I totally understand why, but it was still a shock to see the rooms stripped bare of anything welcoming. No magazines. No brochures. Just warning signs everywhere.

Even though I did appreciate the vases of fake flowers attempting to add a sense of normalcy, I couldn’t shake the surreal vibe in the air.

However, I did avoid the time-out chair in the corner. It felt too much like we were all being punished. A tad bit too creepy for me.

Looking forward to the other side

“Those who contemplate the beauty of the earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts.”

Rachel Carson

from the back fence

Behind one sturdy fence lies a river
Rising and falling with every tide
Each day the moon is relied on
Nature carrying us along for the ride

I took a break from a long walk in our local park recently and took a seat…alone…on the memorial bench we had donated to honor my in-laws. My view was interrupted by the metal fence separating me from the river beyond. But I knew what was there.

Bordering trees and plant life often double as reflections on the water’s surface. River banks are exposed when the tide is low and disappear when the tide is high. There is something strangely calming and comforting about this. The predictable pull of the moon. An ebb and flow of the changing seasons and time of day.

Nature at its finest with a lesson at its core.

It was hot as blazes the day I took this photo. What did I expect for July? Exactly what happens every July.

I hold out hope upon hope that a predictable life will return someday.

When we get to the other side.

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BeckyB JulySquares: Perspectives
Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Back of things
SixWordSaturday
V.J.’s Weekly Challenge #105: Quotation

Macro Monday: Double Capped

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Close ups or macro

…photos needs to be black and white, desaturated, sepia (brown tones) or selective color. 

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acorn double cap copy

I rescued this acorn during a macro photo shoot sometime last year. I spied it lying among its fellow acorns…which were scattered in heaps on the ground – most capless – or broken all together. Random caps everywhere. Crunched underfoot by humans like me. Somehow one had remained unscathed.

I brought the survivor home, where it has been resting safely and comfortably on my bookshelf ever since.

Today it was time for some fresh air, as I was inspired by Cee’s challenge this week.

I’m happy to report it didn’t fall off the railing of my tiny deck and get lost in the grass 2 floors below. If it had, one of the hundreds (well maybe not hundreds, but close…) of squirrels would surely have snatched it away before I made it down the stairs for a rescue.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Benches

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Benches

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There is a public park in my town which borders a tidal river. The grassy expanse is dotted with flowers, enormous trees and “Memorial Benches.” All of the benches (numbering well over 50) have been donated by citizens in remembrance of family members. Many of the original benches were made of wood (newer ones are made of composite material or granite) and have long since started disintegrating. The stain is peeling away. The wood is starting to rot. But the messages…inscribed into the backs…are still legible.

One of these benches has always caught my eye. I don’t know who donated it or when. But I always pause and reflect…thinking of my friends who have faced this cruel disease. And especially my one friend who didn’t make it.

bench

 

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Fences & Gates

Inspired by Cee’s B&W Photo Challenge: Fences & Gates

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Everywhere you go these days, there is a NO sign.

No school. No work. No library. No restaurant. No coffee shop. No toilet paper…..

No. No. No.

We all back away.

When I attended the Newport Folk Festival in 2009, the site was surrounded by a fence designated to keep attendees from swimming in the harbor. Probably for their own good. Isn’t that what all good fences are for? Protection. Safety. Whether we like it or not.

It appeared to be somewhat flimsy, but a barrier nonetheless. I never saw a swimmer, so I assume it worked.

A visible barrier against a visible risk.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Newport, Rhode Island

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Bicycles…

Inspired by Cee’s B&W Photo Challenge: Bicycles, Tricycles, Motorcycles & Unicycles.

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I do not have access to tricycles anymore – and my older photos are more about the cute kids proudly riding them. My one and only experience on a motorcycle was briefly in high school on the back of a friend’s bike. It was great fun as a passenger riding madly around the neighborhood. I never did figure out how to lean the right way going around corners. Apparently making it difficult for the poor guy to navigate. It was still a thrilling ride…for me at least.

Unicycle? I’ve never seen one except maybe in a parade on TV.

However, last summer I noticed a long line of bicycles alongside a Farmers’ Market in Washington DC.

Waiting to be rented. For 30 minute trips at a time.

What a good idea…

line of bikes

Get local fresh fruits and vegetables…and your exercise too!

 

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Geometric Shapes

Inspired by:
Cee’s B&W Photo Challenge: Any Kind of Geometric Shape
citysonnet February photo a day challenge: Abandoned

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Last Fall I discovered that a longtime business in my former home town was closing. A Hallmark affiliate, it had been a mainstay in the community for decades. I made a stop the week before it shut down for good. It is always sad to see a store in the throws of going out of business. The card racks mostly empty. Display cases for sale. Jewelry, wrapping paper, stationary…gone. I remember buying holiday cards here. Birthday cards. Photo albums.

The brick building housing this Hallmark store and a number of others lining the main street dates back to the mid 1900s (or earlier).

I noticed the back of the store was roped off – for the most part – but my curiosity won out and I carefully stepped over scraps of carpet, sheetrock and shelving to investigate.

Part of a side wall had been cut away…revealing an abandoned door to what once was.

abandoned door