Layered life

Lens-Artists Challenge #68: Layered

…we invite you to explore Layers. You can include images of buildings, landscapes, seascapes, clouds, etc.

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I am always fascinated to get a glimpse of what goes on in the hidden places. The mysteries of plant life navigating from seed to stem to flower. Or whatever its destiny may be.

The intricate dance of soil, water and nutrients essential for success…seems miraculous.  Tender shoots of life making their way to the sun. Surviving despite obstacles…both nature and human caused.

A cross section of one hidden place was on display recently…

layers of plants

…when a recent rainstorm dislodged a support wall alongside a brook near the town park.

My first thought was to crop the image to highlight the layers of exposed roots and stones in the center. Then I realized…no, it is all part of a larger and equally complex layered landscape. In a scene that literally stopped me in my tracks during a late afternoon walk.

This brook also travels south and eventually empties into a tidal river that flows behind old brick buildings in the downtown area.

A site for more layers.

There I discovered plant life…layered in glorious fall colors…crawling up, down and across a brick and stone canvas.

layered walls

Stopped in my tracks once again.

 

 

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Fire Hydrants

A surprise find for Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge: Fire Hydrants

 

I was walking downtown yesterday – making my way back from a huge outdoor flea market – on a splintery “boardwalk” along the river. It was low tide in this tidal river and I noticed a huge pipe sticking out of the water. It snaked under the boardwalk path and out to a strip of grass bordering a parking lot.

Much to my surprise…this is what the pipe led to:

hydrant two

If it hadn’t been labeled, I may not have guessed what it was.

Have you ever seen one like this?

 

Hydrant one

 

 

Taking a Break

Inspired by Lens-Artists Challenge #57: Taking a Break

…respond to this week’s challenge by showing how we and/or others “Take A Break”…How many ways can you think of for getting away from the daily grind and finding peace?

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I like to walk. Outside. I will admit I count steps – or at least keep track of them – via an older model fitness tracker I wear every day. No bells, whistles or flashing lights. Just an app on my phone which records how many steps I’ve accumulated. If I can count at least 5,000 in a day I don’t feel like a slug. 10,000 is the elusive goal. It all depends on how I’m feeling. How well various body parts are cooperating.

If nothing else, it motivates me to push back my desk chair, close my laptop, find my walking sneakers and head outdoors. Sometimes I call a friend to go with me – we chat and discuss the world’s problems.

Five years ago, I had a regular walking buddy – also a good friend – who would drive to my house for an afternoon walk. At that time I lived in a quiet neighborhood on a cul-de-sac. A relatively level road. Perfect for walking and talking with minimal huffing and puffing (more for my benefit – my friend, an experienced hiker, slowed her pace down for me).

Since then, she moved to California and I moved out of the house on the cul-de-sac. To a condo a few towns over. The “walking trail” promised by the developer is no trail at all. Just crushed stone gradually being taken over by grass and water runoff from the roof drains.

My steps outside now consist of walking up and down in front of the condo buildings.  I can also turn the corner and walk further into a neighborhood of matching houses…which are really condos. One “active adult community” next to another…but without many active adults visible.

A big change from the old neighborhood. No swing sets. No children on bikes or running to catch a ball. Rarely anyone at all.

Sometimes I drive downtown and walk to the end of the main street to reach the town “parkway” – which isn’t really a parkway like the infamous Garden State Parkway I grew up next to. It’s a quiet two lane road next to a tidal river. Grassy areas on either side of the road. Lined with memorial benches…often filled with locals finishing up their ice cream cones.

And for those of us who need one…a resting spot…to take a break.

parkway benches

The parkway’s sidewalk is next to the river.

Perfect for walking…especially late in the day…

river downtown

It doesn’t get much more peaceful than that.

 

parkway sign

 

 

 

Photo a Week – Sunshine

Nancy Merrill is hosting a photo challenge. The theme this week – Sunshine

IN A NEW POST CREATED FOR THIS CHALLENGE, SHARE A PHOTO OR TWO (OR MORE) OF SUNSHINE

 

When the sun is shining, everything feels a bit better.
Warmer.
Creating a bright space for peeking.
Out a doorway.
Or a window.
Through the trees.

Inspiring songs, poems, smiles…and photographs.

A favorite part of living across the street from the ocean for 3 months?
This view out the balcony door on a magnificent sunny day…

sunshine beach

 

 

A favorite part of taking a walk last Saturday?
Discovering the sunshine…framing the trees.
Behind the main street…down a short hill…next to the river…
In my new hometown.

sunshine river