Monday, March 2, 2015

Benchmarks

It's official.
It was the coldest February eva! Well, at least in the city of Portland, it was. Would I sit on one of these benches with my tootsies in snow? Sure. For maybe a picture with friends (if they asked nicely), who might want the backdrop of the city behind, but that's about it. Five seconds, max! "Come on! Take the picture. My feet are freezing! Take a selfie. You don't need me. Heck, those are my teeth chattering!" Someone asked me the other day, when I grabbed for my jacket, "Are you cold?" My retort, "Yes, I'm always cold!" Is it the aging process kicking in? Your guess would be as good as mine on that one. So, why am I here for the foreseeable future? 
I have only one answer.
"I guess I'm certifiably crazy!"
(cue laugh track)
So, benches along my way? Maybe, but in the warm sun, watching the pelicans fly above Coco Beach.
So, paying for oil?
Or paying for 'air'?
What's your pleasure?
or maybe poison?

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Theme Day: Aging

Today, March 1, 2015 is Theme Day across the CDP (citydailyphotoblog) community. This month our theme is AGING. Last Thurday afternoon I walked into the kitchen and out of the corner of my eye thought there was a dog at my birdfeeders. On closer examination, I realized that my turkeys had returned! Remember last summer when I counted seventeen turkeys parading around the backyard? A mom and dad and 15 chicks. I taught you the vocabulary word that I hope you haven't forgotten. That baby turkeys are called poults, and each of the small birds could have fit in my palm. Ta Da! The birds have aged. The family of seventeen is still together, but you'd be hard pressed to single out the mom and dad now. Turkeys age too. They are now all the same size. Here are a few. They are all huge. Don't call adult turkeys a flock, a gaggle, a gobble, or even a herd.
Give 'em some love.
Call them a 'rafter', and keep them happy.
Now, I know what you're thinking.
There are only 269 days until Thanksgiving 2015.
You're welcome!
Gobble. Gobble.

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Sailboat Snow

Although the Casco Bay Lines ferries, trimmed in yellow and red, make scheduled runs throughout the winter months to the islands, their popularity certainly increases along with rising temperatures. The island trips include accommodations for passengers, freight, postal and vehicles. Until April the ferries make regular daily trips to Peaks Island, Little Diamond Island, Great Diamond Island, Diamond Cove, Long Island, Chebeague Island and Cliff Island. I do like the fact that they allow you bring along your own food and beverages for all cruises. There are not many places out there that allow this anymore. They want you paying overinflated prices for their food and drinks. Their music and sunset cruises are two of their most popular sails.
I'd suggest waiting for some warmer weather for these though.
No icebergs sighted.
But, the last time I checked, plenty of floating ice chunks were in evidence at the dock.
"I'm king of the world!"
Sort of...

Friday, February 27, 2015

Tire Treads

This is kind of funny or maybe not.
Have I mentioned it's snowed a bit here this winter? I thought I had. Ridding snow for a city this size can be a royal pain. When I was a kid and beyond, city trucks would just dump the snow into Back Cove and be done with it. However, recent environmental sanctions have put a damper on that practice. So, what's a city to do? Well, create some new terminology for one thing. Ah, let's call them 'snow farms' or 'snow dumps'. There are a couple now on the outskirts of the city on city owned property. One is near the Portland International Jetport. Portland, as of this week, has recorded north of 88 inches of snow. One 'farm' is situated in a wide expanse of open space, but there's a big problem building. It's near the Jetport. City trucks have lugged away more than 1 million cubic yards of snow and dumped it here. It's grown so high the FAA is now concerned. They fear, that if gets any higher, it could interfere with the taking off and landing of aircraft. The man-made mountain of snow now has reached 40 feet. FAA regulation say that 'jetport mountain' or wall of discarded snow could go up another 16 feet to 56 feet and be acceptable, but that it would create hazardous manuvering conditions for bulldozer operators on the 'mountain'. So other places have been found to dump the snow. Other mountains could soo be 'building'. Heck, it not even March yet. Driving by the Jetport each spring, I always keep note of how long the pile lasts. 
No kidding, usually there are remnants still around in June.
See, up here there still often is snow in June.
This year let's hope not in July though.
That would not be a good sign at all.
Don't tread on me.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Sparto

The tanker Sparto is docked unloading crude oil in South Portland. The ship and crew certainly have a grand view of the snow-covered city in the distance. When I was in high school, my friend Peter's dad was a captain who pushed barges up and down the East coast for oil companies. Away for months at a time, there was a time where I thought this life style might suit me. There was a draw. There was adventure. Year round, it was that routine of work a couple of months, off a couple of months. Workers on these tankers certainly see the world, but like with every job the glamor and intrigue evident on the outside only masks the underbelly of hard work, menial tasks and boredom of your days.
A few years ago, a friend of mine had a sign on his math room wall...
"If it's fun; it ain't work."
Somedays, I might agree with this.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Distant Sky

If you could get to the top of the rise here, you'd have a clear view of the comings and going of Casco Bay traffic. It was a pretty desolate scene though on an early Sunday morning, both on water and here on terra firma. Not much activity. Just a few plow trucks moving about, cleaning up the few inches of snow deposited the night before. In my youth of another time, I would have eagerly waded my way in the thigh high drifts to reach the top. Then if I was successful, I'd probably have raised my arms above my head and screamed something like, "I'm the king of the world."or maybe just, "I'm king of the mountain. See if you can knock me off."
Alone time.
I've always enjoyed it.
Back then and even now walking about in new fallen snow.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Sill Art

This little miniature rests on the window sill in our kitchen. It was a gift from J- to Elenka on Mothers' Day a few years back. It's a reproduction of an oil painting (24x36) by Scott Leighton (1849-1898) called "Racing Home Through a Maine Snow Storm". I like it for a couple of reasons. First, I like miniatures a lot. I can't explain the pull; I just do. And growing up on Stevens and Coyle Streets, Mom always had vintage Currier and Ives calendars hanging to mark the passage of our lives. I remember each year the prints had a theme that marked the months. Galloping horses like these, animals, old farmhouses, historical events, scenic vistas, fruits and flower arrangements and others marked the months as they hung in our kitchens. I remember thinking that they showed 'old stuff' and seemed goofy to me. Now, when I see the prints, they make me smile pulling back fond memories.  It's apropos, I think, that this little frame stands next to the kitchen table in our old house today. Thanks J-.
By the way, yes, the 'whiteness' piled up, beyond the glass, behind the frame is a huge pile of snow that waits for melting temperatures.
I can dream. 

Monday, February 23, 2015

Bug Snow

Here's a look I've shown before but not in winter. This is Bug Light in the snow on the shore of South Portland looking across the water towards Eastern Promenade. Notice in the distance you can see it's on a hill. The Hill. You make your way up Congress Street to the top of Munjoy Hill. Then Voila! You reach the Prom. At the other end of the city is Western Promenade. It too lies on the top of a hill, overlooking the Fore River and beyond. One city. Two big hills. Bug Light Park is a fine place to sit on a warm day, fly a kite, watch harbor traffic, picnic  or just do a little daydreaming. There are spectacular views too from here of the City of Portland fireworks display on the Fourth of July.
And no, I have no idea where the name Bug Light comes from.
Maybe an infestation of 'no see 'ems'.
Ever heard of them?
You might not want to know.
Slap!
*Research completed. Built in 1875, the light gets its name because of its small size.
I like my story better.
Slap!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

"Hope...

... springs eternal in the human breast."
-Alexander Pope, An Essay on Man
These words I've always heard quoted about the next upcoming baseball season. Well, at least until Kevin Millar got the Sox players to 'cowboy up' in 2004 and rode that theme all the way to hoisting the World Series Championship trophy. The Red Sox pitchers and catchers reported this past Friday to Fort Myers, Florida to begin another season, while this sculpture, of a family on a July afternoon waiting outside of our Hadlock Field, stands amid another four inches or so of newly fallen snow. Will it ever end? Not winter. I know it will, but what about the snow?
Someday soon, I might just get to see a spring training game.
Until then---
"Hope springs..." in Florida.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Woodshed Snow

I'm going out on a limb today.
Yes, I've been out here quite a few times in my life. Sometimes with good results. Sometimes not so much. Get ready. I'm budding with an air of confidence too. I'm going to make a prognostication with some guessing and prophesying thrown in for good measure. We've lived in our place since 1977, and I haven't kept a running tab year to year on snowfall accumulations. Weather forecasters do, but as a rule I don't hold to much stock in them. At the end of each winter, they'll do a tally sheet for the area. So many inches here, so many inches there. Usually, in the course of my winter duties, I'll take a step back the end of February and say something like this, "Whoa, that's a lot of snow, or it's been a pretty mild one." Ok, here I go out on the limb. We have never had snow piled in the yard the way we do this year. The road in front of the house has snow piled as high as I've ever seen it. I stopped counting at 85 inches and that's not including the 6 inches this week and the 3-6 due tonight. I mentioned this to Elenka yesterday. I think I can say with assured certainty that this is the 'snowiest wintah' in our neck of the woods that we've experienced... and maybe the coldest too.
In the past, old timers would say, "This ain't anything like that winter of '47."
I think after this winter we can safely say, "Oh yes it is!"
And another thing.
I have snow drifted into my woodshed this year.
Never happened to this degree before.
Truth be told.
It might have been, because I ripped part of cover tarp away when I ran over it with the snowblower.
Not proud of that fact.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Harbor Chunks

From time to time this month, they've had to run Coast Guard ice cutters up and down various rivers in the state to break up ice jams. The harbor though has stayed pretty much ice free, except near the wharfs, like I showed in yesterday's photograph. My Dad claimed, that once in his youth, it froze over, and you could walk to the nearby islands. I have never seen photographic proof of this, so until I do I'll file this under a 'dad lie'. I do have first hand knowledge of something having to do with ice chunks however. I offer a word of caution at this point. Now, it looked do-able. However, unlike in the cartoons where characters can run across some open water littered with ice chunks, skipping from chunk to chunk and and staying dry until reaching land, this is impossible.
I have first hand proof.
I tried it once and once only.
A smart ass kid of twelve is not quick enough to accomplish it.
I was soon up to my knees in icy swamp water.
So, adults out there...
Forgetaboutit!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Iced In

Oh, it's cold!
Please don't ask.
If you're familiar with the wharfs off of Commercial Street you probably know Harbor Fish Market on Custom House Wharf and the restaurant J's Oyster on Portland Pier. They are right next to each other and this is the water between. On most summer afternoons this view is saturated with lobster boats, trawlers and tourists capturing this picturesque venue that just screams forth "Maine: Then Way Life Should Be". This image from yesterday shows the waterway getting pretty iced in.
Life isn't always pretty.
But it's what we have. 
Winter along the water's edge: this is home.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Window Ice

If you're looking for some big, hanging ice, you're in luck. There's plenty of it dangling, precipicely
from roofs around the city. Here's some seen looking out of a Cumberland Avenue window, towards the Westin Portland Harborview Hotel. Now, that's a mouthful. It all seemed so much easier when it was just the Eastland Hotel. At the Stevens Avenue house there was a corner on the driveway side where ice ran from the roof to the ground. It was thick too, about 8-10 inches. My self-appointed job each February was to 'take it down'. The backside of an axe accomplished the task nicely. The thought that I might have been doing severe damage to the roof never crossed my mind.
My life of innocence continued.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Blustery Stretch

Do you carry the worry gene?
I do.
It was passed along to me via my Mom, I think. If I started writing my list of worries, I'd still have pen in hand years from now. Well, I exaggerate a lot, so maybe I'm doing it here. Let's just say I have my share. Maybe more. There I go again. Most people don't share their inner most fears and for good reason. Sundays, I'm usually up early and out and about scouting up a couple of cups of coffee and a morning paper. About a month ago a good friend, who is a women basketball coach at St. Joseph's College in nearby Standish, offered me a deal I couldn't pass up. Buy a tall, plastic coffee mug for $20, support the team and enjoy a free cup of Dunkin Donuts java every Sunday for the year. Fifty-two weeks of free joe? I did the math. After about 9 Sundays, I'm drinkin' for free. Now the problem. I've got to get that mug filled every week. I'm forcing myself. So even in bad weather, I'm on the road. Lately, the weather issue here hasn't been snow, but the brutally cold temperatures. Yesterday the wind chill at 7AM was -17°F. If that wasn't enough, the after-blizzard, strong winds have kept up their pace and have created some treacherous driving conditions. Pictured here is one of the most dangerous stretches of road on my way into the city. The snow is blowing off of the fields, covering the roadway and making for close to whiteout conditions. 
I worry when the wind drives the snow this way.
But the real BIG worry is that I won't be able to make it to my free cup of coffee.
See, my life is worry-filled.
Carrying this gene has a lot of weight.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Snow Trail

Seen here is a snowmobile trail just the down the road a bit. I won't be riding this trail this week on a snow machine, but many will. Those that do around here, and there are many, will be in snow heaven. There will be Ski-doos, Polarises and Arctic Cats and other snow machines traveling over the thousands of miles of trails state-wide for the rest of the winter. The dealership closest on Route 25 usually has a sign that reads "Think Snow". I'll subscribe to the our local greenhouse on the same stretch of highway that competes with their sign that reads "Think Spring".
How about you?
*One more time. Friend, Yelena has a new blog. If you have time, please stop by and say Hi. Thanks to all who did yesterday!
http://porcelainpigs.blogspot.com/

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Uncle!

Some people are doing a lot of 'crying uncle' these days. No more snow! Please, no more snow! We surrender! Checking out the news, the weather forecasters seem to be leading the 'beating of the drum''. People I come across jokingly say they are leaving the state and heading to southern locales. I'm getting a coffee and the local barista seems to think I need to hear her complaints about the weather. "I hate all this snow and frigid cold." My retort? Hey, it's Maine. It's winter here. It snows in winter, sometimes a lot! I've survived winters like this. I cut my teeth in winters like this. If you're a nostalgia buff, you'd love it here now. This is a winter throwback. Want to experience a 50's-60s winter snowfall? Come to Maine, right now! There is still loads of winter left. The rest of February, all of March and usually a good deal of April. So come to Maine. Buy a shovel. Enjoy.

Got a little free time today. Visit my friend Yelena's new blog. She's had few comments. Please give her something to read. hahaha
/http://porcelainpigs.blogspot.com/

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Heart Attack

The Valentine Bandit has 'attacked' the city again, down Congress Street and the outskirts. How does SHE do it? Or How does HE do it. Better still HOW do THEY do it? WHY do they do it? And maybe the most important question: HOW much masking tape and red ink do they consume in their late night jaunt? Here's another point. I bet it's an alcohol-induced venture. I say, so what. It's pretty cool to drive down Congress and see all the windows 'addressed' with red hearts at dawn on the 14th. Note the small one in the lower right.
For us, it's going to be a Valentines' evening and next day snow-in. Blizzard warnings up all over the state. We're going to hunker-down and ride 'her' out... and oh yea, FEAST!
On the plus side, our menu for the night:
Lobster Mac and Cheese.
Homemade Crab Cakes.
Filet Mignon. 
A iceberg-wedge salad with blue cheese and bacon.
and a bottle of Prosecco.
(Did I tell you I sleep with a helluva cook?)
See you tomorrow!
*ps. Sorry I'm late. We had an 'interesting' breakfast and adventure in the city. More later on that. No, I wasn't arrested.

Friday, February 13, 2015

River Ice

Here I am driving across the Fore River yesterday mid-morning. The combination of ice flats and flowing water quite caught my eye so I just had to pull over into the breakdown lane and snap a few shots off. I had to be fast, because as you can see, yes it was snowing a bit. Not a lot, but it created some slippery intersections and some overall greasy driving. Off in the distance, you can make out the Western Prom, on the left, rising over the river, and the Fore River bridge heading off towards South Portland. The snow sort of adds a vintage look to the scene, I think.
The coldest weather of the season headed here this weekend.
Do you suffer triskadekaphobia?
Any phobias?
I just fear another blizzard this weekend.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Big Ice

Signs of the times.
Often these signs bring with them  difficult times.
The huge icicles, hanging off this local town office, usually mean coveted warm air and $$$ is escaping somewhere. Not good. Driving home yesterday, Elenka tells me many homes and establishments either had active shovelers at work or saw roofs that showed evidence of snow having been removed. Luckily, few if any of our storms this winter have brought rain. Water on top of all this snow would mean roofs collapsing and pieces of property damaged beyond repair in some cases. Not good. Another issue that these storms bring is gigantic snowbanks at stop signs around the city. In some cases, you put life and limb in danger, as you attempt to maneuver out into traffic. Not good.
Some of you have inquired, so here we go. 
What are the statistics so far for the winter in these parts?
Around 74 inches of snow has fluttered to the ground since the first flake back in December.
The killer?
A week or so ago, we got a 50 inch treat in just 7 days.
Not good.
Looks picturesque, but it carries with it that nasty underbelly.
Big headaches.

Forecast: Tonight 1-2 inches. Saturday into Sunday? Don't ask.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Hiker

Mystery solved.
Well, at least for me.
Here's an interesting sculpture in Deering Oaks, along Park Avenue, called "The Hiker". It's a memorial to American soldiers who fought in the Spanish-American War, the Boxer Rebellion and the Filipino-American War. It's been standing here in our park since 1924. Designed by Theo Alice Ruggles Kitson, the artwork commemorates American soldiers who fought in these wars. Recognize it? Some of you might. There were about 50 identical copies constructed in the early 1920's and probably spread about the world. I've always wondered about this piece of art here in our park. Why  was it here? And what did it represent? A little research and those questions, I guess, have been answered. The sculpture shows a soldier heading into battle. Why is it called "The Hiker"? Of course, you are probably asking yourself this same question. It's the name these soldiers gave themselves on the battlefields: 'hikers'.
There, a couple of mysteries solved (for me anyway) today.
Anybody seen one of these? 

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Big Wheels

Part of my early years was spent in a small sand pit next to my friend's Scotty's house. His dad drove some large rigs for a local construction company, and he was forever bringing home toy trucks and cars for us to play with in the sand. Scotty had around 4-5 Tonka-like trucks that we spent hours upon hours playing with in our make- believe city scape of sand. I asked Santa for a couple of those big, yellow rigs for Christmas one year, but that never happened. I'm sure that was well beyond Mom and Dad's holiday budget. No problem, Scotty always got lots of toys, and he openly shared with his friends. When J- became of age for trucks, we got him a couple of the big, yellow Tonka trucks to use in the sandbox up back. I played too. See, I finally got my trucks. J- gave them away this past summer to Alexis' sons. They were so appreciative.
This large Forestry truck, once an Army vehicle, sits for sale on Route 320.
It's been converted into a 'firetruck' for use in rugged terrain.
Not for me though.
I've had my fill of big trucks.
Wait!
Maybe I could put a plow on the front.
With all this snow piling up, I could use a plow.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Still

Yes, it's STILL snowing here.
Our Lady of Victories still stands tall though amid another blanket of snow. It's been snowing, heavy at times, since Friday morning and will continue, prognosticators say, through this evening. What's a guy to do. I have no sword like she has.  Just my trusty Toro snowblower at the ready. I have no "vorpal blade to go snicker snack!", like that of Lewis Carroll's Jabberwock. Those in the know, who keep track of such things, are saying that this has been just about the snowiest week since record keeping began. At this point I could really care. All I know is that since January I have cranked that snowblower up too many times. Just another inch until 3 PM. I guess I can hold out and keep the fire burning here in the kitchen. I had plans today.
Dashed!
Feeling guilty?
I have extra shovels.
As a kid, we shoveled sidewalks for money.
After a month and a half like this, our pockets would be exploding!
Still.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Ding Dong

Life always begins somewhere. My professional life pretty began here at KMS. Although I was leaning towards being in a high school English classroom, a student teaching position opened up here in a middle school, and I grabbed it. My thinking was get my student teaching assignment covering grades 7-12 under my belt, and I could go any place. It was an enlightening 8 weeks. I worked with two seventh grades and one ninth grade advanced English class. It was fun. I learned a lot that you never discover in all those 'methods of teaching' textbooks. Oh ya, I almost forgot. I met a beautiful blonde in this building that I have been with ever since.
What do they say?
Life moves in mysterious ways.
Mine has. 

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Cove Ice

Today's image is of an iced over Back Cove. The light snow distorts the buildings on the far shore. I remember this scene from high school days looking out the large window seat on the second floor. How's your memory? Mine pretty good when I want it to be. I recall a late July afternoon driving along Baxter Boulevard and coming across a couple of ladies in a white Mercedes in distress. The rear passenger tire looked to be going flat. It was a rented car, and they were at wits end about what to do, as they had an important dinner function to attend in Brunswick that evening. I told them I thought I could do the job and commenced getting the jack and equipment out of the trunk. While I worked, they stood off to the side in stylish dresses, smoking cigarettes and sharing fits of high-pitched laughter. When I finished, the driver and taller of the two handed me a twenty dollar bill. It was then that I realized I knew her: that distinctive face, the perfectly coiffured hair and those large round sunglasses. Yes, it was her. I had read in the paper that she was visiting Maine for a week or so. I had seen so many photographs of this stunning woman in magazines and newspapers. It was Jackie O. Jackie Kennedy Onassis. Yes indeed. We all have them... our brushes with fame. Mine occurred in 1969 on a warm afternoon close by this scene in today's picture. Now if you did the research, you might discover that the lady in question was sailing aboard her husband's yacht off some Greek isle at the time.
No matter.
Hey, it was many years ago.
It did happen.
I think it happened.
It had to happen.
Perhaps I've been caught in the 'fog of war'.
This seems a perfect example of maybe a false memory.
Perhaps I've disremembered it.
Hey, Brian Williams hasn't secured the market on this stuff.
Isn't everybody a bit of a liar?

They were nice sunglasses though.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Street Walker

A hot cup of joe and she's off to work. Even on an early Sunday morning she's got places to go and people to meet. I'm going to hazard that guess. It was too cold and blustery to be otherwise out and about in the snow. Of course, I was up and out, but that's a whole different story. Meeting Paulie for coffee at Crema, catching up on his latest comings and goings and then driving around to see what the camera might be interested in. I wasn't going to be hoofing it anywhere for long. It ended up being just me jumping in and out of my SUV a few times at various places I hadn't traveled in awhile.
Walking the sidewalks of this city this frigid morning wasn't going to happen.
Want to survive a Maine winter?
Here's some good advice.
Pick your spots!

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Table Scene

Usually mornings, one of the first things I do, after I check on the coffee, is look out the window and get a read on the temperature. It's impossible these days though with all the snow accumulation. Note behind Molly, walking on the table, and out the window, the snow bank is pretty high. It covers the outside thermometer. I'm thinking positive though. The woodstove, cranking in the kitchen, is keeping it warm and toasty, and the small painting, of the Wells' marshes by Yelena under the mirror, has got me thinking July.
By the way, you don't want to know what's falling outside these windows right now.
Yesterday the temperature was warm about 35°F.
Snow was melting a tad.
Today... only about 4 inches added.
Do the math.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Snow Streets

Ok, we have issues.
On our peninsulas, both Western and Eastern Proms, parking looks to be a nightmare. I took a brief spin up and down a few snow clogged avenues the other afternoon. First, like most urban landscapes, parking is always a premium, even on the sunniest of August days. So you might just imagine what narrow, in the best of days, streets resemble these days, after about 40 inches of whiteness dropping from the sky. First of all, some vehicles have not been moved since the big blizzard of last Tuesday. They sit stranded amid huge snow drifts. Other cars are assembled where they can, any which way. Most streets have on site parking, first come first serve. Driving these streets, drivers are constantly weaving, crawling and stopping to navigate from one end to the other. I noticed in the paper today they had a poll on how the city is doing dealing with snow removal and keeping them passable. 60% of those polled give the city high grades (A or B) in their attempt to return reality to the peninsulas. Another 19% grade them as a C. If you ask me, that's pretty darn good considering what the plows and crews are up against.
Where to put all the snow?
They used to dump it all in Back Cove, but that's a no-no these days.
Too many environmental regulations and all.
The snow is taken to 'snow farms' out on the city limits.
They are just huge fields where bulldozers await truck after truck, endlessly.
There are lots of farms in Maine.
In summer and winter, apparently.
Forecast? 
A dusting tonight maybe 3-6 inches?

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Hill Tree

This is a tree that's set quite a distance off of Running Hill Road. It caught my eye back a few years, while taking a quick trip to the Maine Mall. Now, I look for it throughout the seasons, when I'm traveling that route headed towards the city. It's most dynamic in autumn and winter as you might imagine. Each time I venture by it in spring, it's bare. It's bare. Then all of a sudden it seems to have exploded. It's hard to catch. In summer, it's almost camouflaged by tall grass and an overwhelming backdrop of the woods. You see, I like the familiar. I think we all do. Those places, faces and memories. They make us feel safe and secure and anchored. I got thinking about this as we all contemplated 'what we would miss most' on our theme day assignment. There are so many small pieces of our worlds, that we pass by each day, that are truly integral in our lives. Some like family, friends, homes, jobs and creative outlets are 'rocks' in our existence. Yet, there are other parts that seem insignificant until we examine the role they play in that jigsaw puzzle that we call US.
Examine your anchors.
You might be surprised.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Apple Treed

C' mon Man!
30 inches last Tuesday.
On Friday, we got an additional 6 more.
Today, we're expecting another 8-12 inches. Schools are closed again. It's 9°F.
I'm going to keep this positive. I've lived here my entire life. I'm used to it. I haven't moved away so I must like it, right? I don't have to get up and go anyplace today or tomorrow. My schedule is completely up to me at this point.
So being upbeat here.
My Patriots won the Super Bowl yesterday 28-24.
Every football fan, out of the New England area, hates us... 'cause they ain't us!
Tom Brady wins 3rd MVP.
Pats with 4th Super Bowl.
Malcolm Butler is going to Disney World!
Fricken snow!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Theme Day: Water

Think Jeopardy today-
I'd have to go with, What are the the waters of Casco Bay, Alex?

Today, February 1, 2015 is Theme Day across the CDPB (citydailyphotoblog) community, and the theme this month is: If you had to leave forever the city from which you usually post, what would you miss most?" Believe me. That was easy! When I first saw the theme posted about mid-month, it took me about 2 seconds to decide what I had to do. You see. To paraphrase a bit of Willie the playwright, "The WATER's the thing." I've lived here all my life, except for parts of 4 years, and it has a pull. Can't explain it, but it's there.
I'd miss the views
Casco Bay.
The Fore River.
The islands floating on it.
It's everywhere around us here.
Water.