Thursday, October 30, 2014
"Mom, I'm the devil!"
*What was YOUR costume?
Wednesday, October 29, 2014
No, not All Hallows Eve.
No, not Day/Night of the Dead.
No, it's not all the viewing of all the themed movies, for example: "Frankenstein", "Dracula", "Psyhco", "The Night of the Living Dead", "Halloween", "The Haunting of Hill House" and one of my all time favorites "The Tingler". No, my friends not any of those. This is the scariest of all, at least in this state. What is it?
Well, ELECTION DAY!
So scary that no one will be allowed to leave the voting booth in the last 10 minutes on November 4.
Two issues have really riled up the natives in the state: the race for Governor and Question #1 Bear Baiting. First: Will the embarrassing statements, vetoes and acts of our dear Governor Lepage keep piling up? Don't bet against it. A couple of 'lightweights' opposing him. At least it'll be a 'fun' next 4 years. Second: Bait or not bait bears with jelly donuts or run them up trees with dogs before shooting them. By the way, it's not cruelty being debated here by some. It's the pure economics of the bear guides and what they bring into the economy of this state and their loss of income. I've lived in Maine all my life. I don't hunt, but I see no problem with it. It's the way of the world up here. But, in my mind, out-of- staters (statistics show80% of bear kills come from outside our state) luring bears with sweety cakes and donuts and catching them in leg irons and executing them is a bit much.
What it is I don't know.
But it ain't hunting!
I'm voting "yes" to stop the practice.
*btw I had two jelly donuts yesterday, and they WERE delicious!
Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Yes, the delicious fruit was what drew me to the photo.
However, now that I step back.
Mailboxes. My Dad delivered mail in Portland for over 35 years.
Newspaper slots below. I delivered the Portland Press Herald and the now defunct Portland Evening Express from age 11-17.
Was I thinking those things when I aimed my camera?
Perhaps in my subconscious.
What's your favorite apple treat?
Mine is pie, pure and simple.
Monday, October 27, 2014
There's excitement in her face. There's intensity in her face. The tools are a bit more advanced these days, but the paring knife from the silverware drawer always got the job done. Halloween afternoon was always set a side to do the deed. Mom and Dad got the pumpkins, and we made our choices. Four kids and I can never remember an argument over who was to carve which orange globe. Selective memory? Once I made my choice I remember just not wanting to screw up the face. I wanted scary, of course, with a jagged mouth and big delta eyes. After we all finished and the linoleum floor was a slippery mass of guts and seeds, more than once I almost went slip sliding across the floor. Mom laughed at the mess and kept a watchful eye for the four of us with little knives. Dad just cursed the mess we had created. Next, candles were secured and placed in our jack-o-lanterns. We then paraded to the front steps and placed them in strategic places that would haunt the 'little ones' with mommies in tow. These days lighted pumpkins on wooden stairs just wouldn't be prudent. Call 911!
The morning after it was such a sad sight.
The blackened, caved-in, sooted roof and that awful smell.
My red devil costume in a pile by my bed.
... waiting for All Saints' Day.
Sunday, October 26, 2014
Thousands and thousands of jack-o-lanterns flickering along the pathways of Beans.
And Halloween is still 5 days off.
Saturday, October 25, 2014
It's the height of the fall season around here. We're heading to a Pumpkin Festival nearby.
Photos at 11.
Enjoy your Saturday.
Ours will be in brilliant sun.
Friday, October 24, 2014
As most of you know, I'm a cat guy. Sure, I have dreams of dog ownership someday, but for right now my border collie is still just in my dreams. As for cats, we have two girls, Molly and Sophie.
Molly 15 years- (she's on the left here with Batman ears):
Nickname: Mollycakes or The Moll
Appearance: She's a tabby with a little Maine Coon Cat in her for good measure. Has a reckless 'raccoon tail' that gets huge when on the prowl.
Social: Very! She's a 'talker'. She makes all kinds of noise and has been known to talk on the phone. At parties, she enjoys walking on all the guests. Has a great affinity for J.
Hugs: For sure! She loves to be held.
Useful: Yes. Any chipmunk that finds its way in the house in winter is dead meat. Excellent mouser! Loves to sit on the warm driveway and watch traffic go by.
Sophie 14 years- (she's on the right):
Nickname: Sophie-Girl or Sophia
Appearance: She's got a good deal of Siamese in her. Wonderful coloring. Wicked soft!
Social: She has begun to 'talk'. Every once in a while you'll hear her Siamese cry. When she cries 'helloooooooo', it sounds eerily human. She's never met a lap she doesn't enjoy. She is special to Elenka.
Hugs: For sure! Very hugable.
Useful: Well, sort of. After her sister catches the critter, Sophie will check out the kill. Likes to play with mice and moles. Loves to sleep on the 'magic floor'.
They are so much a part of our family and wonderful company. They are the best thing your lap can experience, while reading a book on a long, cold, winter afternoon.
Bringing them to the Vet right now.
Wish me luck.
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Tending my tomato plants in hot sun.
Relatives visiting from Jersey.
Visiting art galleries along the coast.
Attempting to make sense of a crowded attic.
That early day at Willard Beach.
Fried clams at Ken's Place.
Afternoons with beverages on the deck.
That day trip to Grafton Notch.
The AmTrak adventure to Boston.
Dinner with good friends along the water.
Lobsters boiling in the pot.
15 turkeys scooting across the backyard.
Motoring to Perkins' Cove on a whim.
Heading out alone just me and a camera.
Summer takes a few last gasps and fades.
Where does time go to hide?
Just memories now...
But I'll take them.
I always do.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
How about you?
Does it ever feel like your world is spinning upside down? I'm lucky. For the most part, I'm pretty right side up most of the time. Although, some who know me well might question that last statement. Some people though can be set off by smallest of items. You know clutter, magazines strewn about or mail scattered across the kitchen table. I must admit. Situations like this give me no matter. Clutter is my friend. I used to tell colleagues that my desk confusion, that was so evident in my room, was a sense of normalcy in my world. That was a lie! It was commonplace, and it bothered me, especially when I was on the 'hunt' for an important paper or folder that I knew was around there someplace. I was always impressed with math teachers. How did they do it? Lots of tests, but their desks were always clean and organized. I always wondered where does all their crap go? Where do they put it? It can't just be their 'left brain' pumping out organization in their world. Simply put, mass confusion, like a desk or room that looks like its been attacked by the run-of-the-mill tornado, is really not to my liking. It's not good for me. I know it, but...
Can I just have just a bit of a collage of my stuff around the den and porch? You know, for weeks?
Then where can I acquire some of that left brain stuff?
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
This of course was the refrain of beatnik, Maynard G. Krebs, on the old sitcom "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis". It was one of the earliest TV shows that I waited for each and every week. That word 'work', that Maynard hated, came to mind yesterday, as I began my yearly ritual of moving wood to the woodshed. Of course, "The Old Farmers Almanac", a staple in this neck of the woods, is again predicting? threatening? a long cold winter, with more snow than ever, in these parts of the great white North. I've been following, but not believing, the prognostications of this magazine since my high school days, and I can just about guarantee you that every fall the almanac is threatening an upcoming winter of weather worst than ever. It has never failed! Come April most people around here have long forgotten the dire predictions of snowpiles of 6 months ago. All we want is spring.
My plan today is to beat the rain and get a couple more loads into the shed.
Afterall, shed happens!
Monday, October 20, 2014
Why am I thinking water this morning? We did have a very strange thunderstorm Saturday evening, with lots of thunder. We're not used to thunder and that humidity mid-October, but it's not because of the storm. I've been reading Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand and a great deal of it so far is set in the waters of the Pacific near Midway and Wake Islands. But again this is not why I'm thinking water today. My 'orange' photograph today shows the bottom of my driveway strewn with maple leaves. Now, I know the aging process is kicking in, but should it influence my backing out of the driveway? Backing up, down the driveway is easy when the tar is easily distinguished. Cover everything over with 'orange' and if my mind wanders doing such a mundane activity I tend to find myself on a piece of the lawn, off significantly to the right or left. It's not as embarrassing as backing off to the right and left in snow and leaving your wild tread marks for all the neighbors to see, but it's not good.
I enjoy wandering.
I just have my wits about me, or I'll find myself in big trouble.
Could AAA drag me out of a pile of leaves?
Like I said, somewhat embarrassing.
Water, water everywhere...
Sunday, October 19, 2014
*Maine is the Pine Tree State.
*The white pine tree is the state symbol.
The motto is Dirigo: "I Lead."
The state bird is the black-capped chickadee.
*There are 17 million acres of forest in the state.
* The white pine cone and tassel is the state flower, but it's not a flower at at all. It's a strobilus. Whatever that is.
*The state berry is the blueberry.
*The cat is the Maine coon cat.
*The state fish is the land-locked salmon.
*Yes, we have a state mammal: the moose.
*Our state drink is Moxie.
*"The State of Maine Song" is our state song.
*Heck, we have a state treat: the Whoopie Pie!
*We even have state dirt apparently: the Cesuncook soil series. What the...?????
If you ever travel to the state, these are just a few of the facts you won't have to look up.
You have a head start on being a real Downeasta.
Friday, October 17, 2014
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Take a hike along these trails.
It's good for the soul.
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
We've celebrated a few together.
There are more to come.
Her high school yearbook said she wanted to be an artist. Done! He friends called her El. I still do. Under her picture, it stated that she 'hates green foam rubber'. She STILL does. Fast forward four years and here she was at Monclair State working on her art and graduating with her degree. That next fall she had jumped to Maine and started teaching secondary school art. In the spring of her first year in Maine, I strolled into KMS to do my student teaching, worked in a room across the hall, saw her that first day at lunch, and it was all over.
I was captivated!
The rest is history... our history together.
Happy Birthday, darling!
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
The list of Top 10 Great Streets in America. Here they are:
Central Avenue, Hot Springs, AK
State Street, Santa Barbara, CA
Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington DC
Clematis Street, West Palm Beach, FL
CONGRESS STREET, Portland ME
Broadway, New York, NY
Main Street, Sag Harbor, NY
5th and 6th Avenues, Portland, OR
King's Street, Charleston, SC
25th Street, Ogden, UT
Amazing to find this street of ours among the more recognizable thoroughfares. I mean along side Broadway and Pennsylvania Avenue? It is quite a street. With plenty of shops and stores, museums, restaurants, historical monuments, music venues, diverse churches, an art college, vibrant neighborhoods and plenty of water at either end, it really has it all. I'm a bit prejudice, but I do believe that the American Planning Association got it right.
It certainly is our signature street.
Come to Portland.
Monday, October 13, 2014
We took a little saunter up Route 1 (heading Downeast) on Saturday looking for some fall colors. We checked out the Farmers' Market in Bath and later stopped at Reny's Department Store, the Maine Adventure, where I bought a pair of winter boots and a blaze orange hoodie for moving wood during hunting season here. We stopped in Camden for a late lunch. At the Camden Deli, I tried the 1/2 roast beef sandwich and a dish of seafood chowder, while Elenka sampled the veggie focaccia. Both were delicious and worth the wait. After venturing in quite a few shops, we were off for the main attraction and final destination of our road trip. It was just a short jaunt over to Lincolnville's Cellardoor Winery. Many a time over the last few years we've been in the area but never stopped. Saturday we did. The main 'tasting room' is a surprisingly large, two floor barn decorated with wine accoutrements and lots of smiling faces and laughter. We settled in the upstairs open room that looked out over their vineyards and down on the room below(seen here). There is an interesting story that goes with the winery's logo that appears on their bottles. It seems that at the turn of the 20th Century a hobo stopped by the farmhouse looking for work and a safe place to rest. He carved a design on the door that looks like the letter 'H'. In his reality, it symbolized two travelers reaching out at a welcoming place and shaking hands. In the 'hobo world' this marking meant that this building was a safe place to stop, rest and get substance.
I don't especially like the logo. Take a look. You be the judge.
We will return though.
It was a fun afternoon.
Sunday, October 12, 2014
Lots of books.
Lots of quiet, thinking spaces there.
Oh, and yes, I must be perfectly honest now.
There was always coffee brewing in the back room.
Books and java, sort of a lethal combination for me.
Saturday, October 11, 2014
Buildings go up.
Life moves forward.
A city breathes.
Friday, October 10, 2014
Life has changed.
These were $6 a candle.
I'd need a lot of dimes.
Thursday, October 9, 2014
Here are just a few of the bands playing at local venues around the city in the next few weeks.
The Real Kids
The Nervous Eaters
The Cabin Project
Love and Theft
Black Veil Brides
The Dapper Gents
Geeks Who Drink
The Ghost of Paul Revere
I'm intrigued by some of these names.
I'm interested in taking a look at some of these performers.
Wednesday, October 8, 2014
No blood moon.
No lunar eclipse.
(don't rush to the window)
Temperatures reaching 70s.
Fine fall foliage viewing.
It's fall around here too.
Hey, sun's out... 9:08 AM.
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Scarecrow: "Pardon me this way is very nice.
It's pleasant down this way, too.
Of course, some people do go both ways."
Certainly, watching the "Wizard of Oz" on TV, sitting on that braided rug in the living room, munching on popcorn and sipping Pepsis on Stevens Avenue always resurfaces fond memories. I must admit the scarecrow, on his search for a brain, was always a character I could identify with in the movie. I like to think it has something to do with my continuing quest for knowledge, while others who know me well might suggest other less lofty reasons. All I know is that it's yet another of these flicks that whenever I cross it I can't help but spend a few minutes with it.
Another of my feeble attempts at recapturing youth?
Who's to say.
Old guy one day.
Youth the next.
Where are we all headed?
Just down the road a piece, I guess.
Monday, October 6, 2014
A boy with his new toys.
Now, let's get this right out in the open. I've never been one who has espoused any of the principles of reincarnation. But perhaps I might want to do some reading up on that subject.
Yessir pardner, went out West and fancied I get myself a Stetson. Found one in a store in Sisters, Oregon, but wasn't completely to my liking. However got all the stats I needed and yes, ordered it online. Always wanted one, and now it's done and sitting pretty atop Mr. Excitement's head. This other little baby I've been looking for since the spring. Checking out Craig's List, local ATV dealerships and word of mouth, I've been looking for either a Honda Rancher or Foreman. Both came highly recommended as a used machine. While I was 'away', my buddy Curt called and said he had found one for me in pretty 'mint' condition. He said he knew a guy at the dealership, and the machine was a 'steal'. He even got the company to knock off $200. So, I'm in west coast Portland and the atv is in Topsham, near Brunswick, Maine. A quick phone call, a passing of a number on a piece of plastic, and I was the proud owner of a Rancher 350 4X4. The mechanic, who lives up the street, even hauled it home for me and put it in the garage, safe and sound. This 4-wheeler is going to save the life of my garden tractor. No more lugging trailer loads of wood to my shed.
Now, here's the question.
Was I EVER a real cowboy in my other life?
Sunday, October 5, 2014
I don't like to:
clean the top of the stove
buy stuff online
do detailed things
go to the dentist
I do like to play golf. Although I don't play the game well all the time. Pretty much everything else in the world I don't mind at all.
Saturday, October 4, 2014
The news around here is that it's going to be a fall of 'hot colors'. Locals say the blame can be laid at the foot of a cool summer. Apparently they didn't experience the summer that I lived through recently. My retrospective would be this this guy 'survived' a pretty dry and relatively warm summer in these parts. Fall colors are reaching their peak around the southern Maine locale in the next week or so. At least that's the way my eyes are seeing it. This month brings lots of cruise ships unloading passengers into buses heading off to view the fall fireworks. Rain and fog will only heighten their viewing pleasure.
I say enjoy!
Captured here are 'fake colors' harboring in a store window advertising autumn fashions.
Friday, October 3, 2014
Look what I found.
So I'm flying back UNITED, and after about an hour of reading The Last Train to Zona Verde I thought it was time for a break. I reached into the back of the seat in front and from the magazine holder I pulled out the company magazine "Hemispheres". Usually in the course of a flight, I'll pull it out and do a fast skim. Every once in awhile magazines offer me ideas to write about. A couple of years, I even got ideas for our middle school's yearbook theme from them. This time, however, I found quite a treat! Well, at least I thought I did. The Q&A was pretty lame. No real insight into her life.
Heck, last night Project Runway was more revealing.
"She's got legs and knows..."
Now, that is one great ZZ Top song!
Thursday, October 2, 2014
I spent a few days in Bend on my trip out West. My sister is building a house there, so we traveled there to check everything out. What magnificent views she is going to have out all her windows. I spent about 40 minutes photographing inside and out of her new home. This rock is in their backyard. They are going to have wonderful views of Mt. Bachelor too, where they will ski often. I did find out that the mountain got its name because it 'stands apart' from the Three Sisters, a group three volcanic mountains to the northwest. If you've never been Oregon let me fill you in, the state is just chock full of big rocks, mountains and trees.
And yes, I have already picked out my room.
What a view I'll have!
Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Today, October 1, 2014, is Theme Day across the world-wide CityDailyPhotoBlog community (cdp). This month's subject is 'movement' and here we have it: the railroad station in Portland, Oregon with passengers moving toward trains. It's a two-for-one deal! My Dad took the train twice Portland to Portland to visit my sister Joanne and her husband. Both of his trips were different. The first one he stayed in the states going across country, and he slept in his coach seat all the way. Bad decision. Next trip, he went via the Canadian Rockies, and he played it smart. He got a sleeper and about $100 of silver dollars for tips. He was a hit on this trip. The conductors and the waitstaff loved him. Everywhere he ventured on board he was tossing silver pieces around. Each time he returned, he shared great stories about all his adventures. These tales and those lonesome whistles of the trains rushing through Morrills Corner at 2 AM each morning, making me roll about in bed, probably sealed my love of trains.
I'll take this train West someday.
I know I will.
"It Takes a Lot to Laugh It takes a Train to Cry"
I'll take this train West someday.
I know I will.
"It Takes a Lot to Laugh It takes a Train to Cry"