Tag Archives: fall

What if….

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The picture above is the view out of my office window here at the house. I’m fortunate – I can work from home, or pretty much anywhere that I have an internet connection. I know some still fight the commute (as I did for decades!) and I feel for you, but I’m grateful that I seldom have to do that any more.

I took this picture about a week ago. As you can see, fall is trying to arrive here in Georgia. There is hope!  (Actually, it’s been quite nice the past 10 days or so.) But as I looked at this picture, a thought crossed my mind (hey – even I have thoughts once in a while!): what would life be like if we worked outside and only came inside when it was too cold or raining? I know that some folks work outside all year long, but I’m thinking even of folks like me who are primarily white collar types of workers. What if my desk and computer were outside during the fall and spring (at least) and I spent the entire day out there in the beauty, the fresh air and was surrounded by the sounds of leaves rustling and birds singing? Wouldn’t that be AWESOME!!!!!

Instead, I sit in here, occasionally looking out the window. I think that if we were outside more, we’d be more at peace, have less stress in our lives, be healthier…and have better suntans, too!  (That is if we didn’t die of skin cancer…but we’d have a shade over us to protect us, right!?!?!)

I have a hammock in the back yard and the last time I was out there laying in it, I was thinking about “How can I work while laying in my hammock?”  I’m still working on that one. It would be hard to type on my Surface, that’s for sure.  But it’s a pretty smart machine and can do almost anything by voice, too.  May have to give it a try one of these days before long!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1962, complicated and tension-filled negotiations between the United States and the Soviet Union finally resulted in a plan to end the two-week-old Cuban Missile Crisis. A frightening period in which nuclear holocaust seemed imminent began to come to an end.

On October 22, President John F. Kennedy warned the Soviets to cease their reckless program to put nuclear weapons in Cuba and announced a naval “quarantine” against additional weapons shipments into Cuba. The world held its breath waiting to see whether the two superpowers would come to blows. U.S. armed forces went on alert and the Strategic Air Command went to a Stage 4 alert (one step away from nuclear attack).

On October 24, millions waited to see whether Soviet ships bound for Cuba carrying additional missiles would try to break the U.S. naval blockade around the island. At the last minute, the vessels turned around and returned to the Soviet Union.

On October 26, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev responded to the quarantine by sending a long and rather disjointed letter to Kennedy offering a deal: Soviet ships bound for Cuba would “not carry any kind of armaments” if the United States vowed never to invade Cuba. He pleaded, “let us show good sense,” and appealed to Kennedy to “weigh well what the aggressive, piratical actions, which you have declared the U.S.A. intends to carry out in international waters, would lead to.” He followed this with another letter the next day offering to remove the missiles from Cuba if the United States would remove its nuclear missiles from Turkey.

Kennedy and his officials debated the proper U.S. response to these offers. Attorney General Robert Kennedy ultimately devised an acceptable plan: take up Khrushchev’s first offer and ignore the second letter. Although the United States had been considering the removal of the missiles from Turkey for some time, agreeing to the Soviet demand for their removal might give the appearance of weakness. Nevertheless, behind the scenes, Russian diplomats were informed that the missiles in Turkey would be removed after the Soviet missiles in Cuba were taken away. This information was accompanied by a threat: If the Cuban missiles were not removed in two days, the United States would resort to military action. It was now Khrushchev’s turn to consider an offer to end the standoff.

(I was just a kid, barely 10 years of age, but I remember the tension of those days very clearly.  I remember going to bed at night and wondering if I’d ever get the chance to see the sun come up again.)

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: During the 1872 election, presidential incumbent Ulysses S. Grant ran against a corpse. His opponent, Horace Greeley, died before the election was finalized. Grant won the election.  George Washington blew his entire campaign budget on 160 gallons of liquor to serve to potential voters (he won 100% of the electoral votes – he was unopposed, so I guess he could afford to blow the budget on booze.)

The View from a Tub

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First of all, let me say that I’m not a fan of taking baths. Showers, yes. Baths, not especially. However, sometimes if I am really sore and achy, a good soak in a hot tub or jacuzzi can really be helpful!

Alas, that’s not what today’s photo is about. I took this shot yesterday morning looking out the window right by our bathtub. I think the view is relaxing enough that I might just have to crawl in the tub one of these days, soak in the warm water and gaze out the window. I love the woods!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1944, two liquid gas tanks exploded in Cleveland, Ohio, killing 130 people. It took all of the city’s firefighters to bring the resulting industrial fire under control.

At 2:30 p.m., laboratory workers at the East Ohio Gas Company spotted white vapor leaking from the large natural gas tank at the company plant near Lake Erie. The circular tank had a diameter of 57 feet and could hold 90 million cubic feet of the highly flammable gas. Ten minutes later, a massive and violent explosion rocked the entire area. Flames went as high as 2,500 feet in the air. Everything in a half-mile vicinity of the explosion was completely destroyed.

Shortly afterwards, a smaller tank also exploded. The resulting out-of-control fire necessitated the evacuation of 10,000 people from the surrounding area. Every firefighting unit in Cleveland converged on the East Ohio Gas site. It still took nearly an entire day to bring the fire under control. When the flames went out, rescue workers found that 130 people had been killed by the blast and nearly half of the bodies were so badly burned that they could not be identified. Two hundred and fifteen people were injured and required hospitalization.

The explosion had destroyed two entire factories, 79 homes in the surrounding area and more than 200 vehicles. The total bill for damages exceeded $10 million. The cause of the blast had to do with the contraction of the metal tanks: The gas was stored at temperatures below negative 250 degrees and the resulting contraction of the metal had caused a steel plate to rupture.

Newer and safer techniques for storing gas and building tanks were developed in the wake of this disaster.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: Experts estimate that in a lifetime, a human brain may retain one quadrillion separate bits of information.

Biker Chick

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Double click for a larger version of the image…

Can you sense it in the air? It’s just a bit cooler and less humid here in Georgia than it has been, but that shouldn’t be surprising as we’re almost 1/3 of the way through October! (Where has this year run off to?!?!?!) It won’t be that long and there will be frost on the pumpkin that sits on the front porch, all ready for Halloween.

Halloween means there will be ghosts and goblins, witches, black cats, pumpkins of every sort, shape and size. The stores will be hawking their candies to give to the kiddies (but if the truth is told, I used to see tons of candy in the office around Halloween – and yes, I did avail myself of my share!). I always enjoyed Halloween as a kid. Now I get to enjoy it with my grand kids AND my kids whenever I can. And there is still, after a fistful of decades, still something magic about the feeling of fall in the air!

Today’s photo was another I shot in Dahlonega, GA, during their scarecrow festival a while back. This is a biker chick…and she’s probably on her way to the store to get candy for the little humans who will be coming to her door. She doesn’t look too scary to me…but that’s all right. We don’t need scary! We just need CANDY!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 2009, two people died and more than a dozen others were hospitalized following a botched sweat lodge ceremony at a retreat run by motivational speaker and author James Arthur Ray near Sedona, Arizona. A third participant in the ceremony died nine days later.

The sweat lodge exercise was part of a five-day “Spiritual Warrior” event held at a rented retreat center located six miles from Sedona. Participants paid more than $9,000 each to attend the retreat. At the time, Ray, who was born in 1957 and raised in Oklahoma, was known for such books as his 2008 best-seller “Harmonic Wealth: The Secret to Attracting the Life You Want,” and had appeared as a guest on a number of TV programs, including “The Oprah Winfrey Show.”

Ray’s sweat lodge ceremony, modeled after a Native American custom intended to purify the body and spirit, was held in a wood-frame structure covered with tarpaulins and blankets. Inside the enclosed space, water was poured over heated rocks to create steam and the temperature became dangerously high, causing many of the more than 50 participants (who had been encouraged to fast for 36 hours prior to the event) to develop breathing trouble and become disoriented. Witnesses later reported Ray had urged people to remain inside and endure the intense heat as a form of personal challenge.

Two people, Kirby Brown, 38, and James Shore, 40, fainted but were left inside the sweat lodge and perished from heat stroke. More than a dozen other people were hospitalized for dehydration and other medical issues. On October 17, a third ceremony participant, Liz Neuman, 49, died.

In February 2010, Ray was indicted on manslaughter charges. When his case went to trial the following year, the prosecution argued that the self-help guru had acted carelessly and shown no regard for the people who got sick during the ceremony. The defense claimed the participants were free to leave the sweat lodge at any time, and said the deaths were an accident and might have been caused by unknown toxins in the ground. During the four-month trial, witnesses claimed that people had become ill or injured at previous retreats run by Ray, and Native American groups expressed outrage over his misuse of their sacred sweat lodge tradition.

On June 22, 2011, a jury in Camp Verde, Arizona, found Ray guilty of three counts of negligent homicide. On November 18 of that same year, he was sentenced to three two-year prison terms, to run concurrently, and ordered to pay some $57,000 in restitution to the victims’ families.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: The country whose people eat the most chocolate is Switzerland, with 22 pounds eaten per person each year. Australia and Ireland follow with 20 pounds and 19 pounds per person, respectively. The United States comes in at 11th place, with approximately 12 pounds of chocolate eaten by each person every year.

Falling towards fall…

Double click for a larger version of the image...
Double click for a larger version of the image…

Have you noticed how the days are growing shorter? It is getting light slightly later each day and dark slightly earlier and it will continue that progression until December 22 when it reverses course and heads back the other way.  We are not far away from the vernal equinox, when the hours of sunlight and dark are equal.

Today it doesn’t feel much like fall outside, at least not here in Georgia. It’s a warm one today, but it have been cooler over the past couple of weeks, and we welcome it. This was our first year of being here throughout the entire Georgia summer. I have to say that it wasn’t nearly as bad as I’d imagined it might be. Sure, it was warm and at times very muggy, but all in all, not bad.

Our oldest son just moved his family up to the Portland, OR area. He noted that this morning it was a crisp 48 degrees at his house. The news said that in the west right now it is about 15 degrees below normal temperature. That’s good – it may help the weary firefighters who have been battling horrendous blazes for months now.

I’ve noticed a few leaves turning yellow – not in great profusion, but it is beginning. The lake near which we live will be ablaze in color before too much longer. Those are all good signs that we are falling into fall.

This being a three day weekend and fall approaching, I thought that this photo that I shot a few months back might be appropriate. Enjoy your weekend, everyone!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: on this day in 1780, patriot Francis Marion’s Carolina militia routed British Loyalists at Blue Savannah, South Carolina, and in the process Marion won new recruits to the Patriot cause.

Following their surprising success at Nelson’s Ferry on the Santee River in South Carolina on August 20, Lieutenant Colonel Francis “The Swamp Fox” Marion and 52 of his militiamen rode east in order to evade pursuing British Loyalists. They were successful, but during their escape, another, much larger, force of Loyalists led by Major Micajah Ganey, attacked the militia from the northeast. Marion’s advance guard, led by Major John James, routed Ganey’s advance guard and Marion ambushed the rest, causing Ganey’s main body of 200 Loyalists to panic and flee. The success of Marion’s militia broke the Loyalist stronghold on South Carolina east of the PeeDee River and attracted another 60 volunteers to the Patriot cause.

Marion, a mere five feet tall, won fame and the “Swamp Fox” moniker for his ability to strike and then quickly retreat into the South Carolina swamps without a trace. He also earned fame as the only senior Continental officer in the area to escape the British following the fall of Charleston on May 12, 1780. His military strategy is considered an 18th-century example of guerilla warfare and served as partial inspiration for Mel Gibson’s character, Benjamin Martin, in the film The Patriot (2000).

Marion took over the South Carolina militia force first assembled by Thomas Sumter in 1780. Sumter, the other inspiration for Mel Gibson’s character in the film, returned Carolina Loyalists’ terror tactics in kind after Loyalists burned his plantation. When Sumter withdrew from active fighting to care for a wound, Marion replaced him and teamed up with Major General Nathaniel Greene, who arrived in the Carolinas to lead the Continental forces in October 1780. Together, they are credited with grasping a Patriot victory from the jaws of defeat in the southern states.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: A baby dolphin is born tail-first to prevent drowning. After the mother breaks the umbilical cord by swiftly swimming away, she must immediately return to her baby and take it to the surface to breathe.

Nora Mills, Helen, GA

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Near the small town of Helen in the northern Georgia mountains is Nora Mill & Granary.  The mill itself is a four-story building built in 1876 complete with 1,500 pound French Burr Mill Stones and a 100 ft. wooden raceway that feeds water to a water turbine. The mill was constructed in 1876 by John Martin after he came to Georgia in search of gold.  In 1902 Dr. Lamartine G. Hardman, governor of Georgia from 1927 -1931, bought the mill and named it “Nora Mill” in memory of his sister Nora. Nora Mill remained in the Hardman Family until 1998, when it, along with 300 surrounding acres, was purchased by a group of investors.

After a succession of millers throughout the years, in the early 1980s, Retired Army Lieutenant Colonel Ron Fain worked with the Hardman family and leased Nora Mill for he and his parents to bring back to life and operate.  Ron worked with his parents until their passing, and then brought his youngest daughter Joann under his wing to learn the art of milling and work the business with him.

​Ron and Joann together developed and brought to market a number of corn & grain recipes that are famous to Nora Mill. Recipes such as “Georgia Ice Cream”, “Dixie Ice Cream”, “Pioneer’s Porridge”, and the like. They expanded the product offerings and opened the gift shop next door to the mill and named it “Nora Mill Next Door”. Joann and Ron worked shoulder to shoulder until his passing in June of 2001.

Nora Mill is now in the third and fourth generation of the Fain family.  Joann Fain Tarpley, with husband Rich, continues to manage and operate Nora Mill Granary. The fourth generation of the same family can be seen at Nora Mill Granary as the children of Joann and Rich are actively working with them at the mill.

There have been many changes over the years, but the main idea is still the same, to grind fresh grains with no additives or preservatives with old-fashioned quality. Nora Mill has recently gone through a major refurbishing. The dam, raceway, and penstock have been rebuilt.  A new porch & deck overlooks gigantic rainbow trout swimming in the beautiful Chattahoochee River.

I took this photo on Saturday of the wooden dam that was built to power the mill.  I’ll include other pictures that help you see the way the dam is constructed later!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1865, Henry Wirz, a Swiss immigrant commanding the notorious Andersonville prison in Georgia, was hanged for the murder of Civil War soldiers incarcerated there.

Wirz was born in Switzerland in 1823 and moved to the United States in 1849. He lived in the South, primarily in Louisiana, and became a physician. When the Civil War broke out, he joined the Fourth Louisiana Battalion. After the First Battle of Bull Run, Virginia, in July 1861, Wirz guarded prisoners in Richmond, Virginia, and was noticed by Inspector General John Winder. Winder had Wirz transferred to his department, and Wirz spent the rest of the conflict working with prisoners of war. He commanded a prison in Tuscaloosa, Alabama; escorted prisoners around the Confederacy; handled exchanges with the Union; and was wounded in a stagecoach accident.  In early 1864, he was assigned the responsibility for Andersonville prison, known as Camp Sumter.

While both sides incarcerated prisoners under horrible conditions, Andersonville deserves special mention for the inhumane treatment of inmates. A stockade held thousands of men on a barren, polluted patch of ground. Barracks were planned but never built; the men slept in makeshift housing, called “shebangs,” constructed from scrap wood and blankets that offered little protection from the elements. A small stream flowed through the compound and provided water for the Union soldiers, but this became a cesspool of disease and human waste. Erosion caused by the prisoners turned the stream into a huge swamp. The prison was designed to hold 10,000 men but the Confederates had packed it with more than 31,000 inmates by August 1864.

Wirz oversaw an operation in which thousands of inmates died. Partly a victim of circumstance, he was given few resources with which to work, and the Union ceased prisoner exchanges in 1864. As the Confederacy began to dissolve, food and medicine for prisoners were difficult to obtain. When word about Andersonville leaked out, Northerners were horrified. Poet Walt Whitman saw some of the camp survivors and wrote, “There are deeds, crimes that may be forgiven, but this is not among them.”

Wirz was charged with conspiracy to injure the health and lives of Union soldiers and murder. His trial began in August 1865, and ran two months. Over 160 witnesses were called to testify. Though Wirz did demonstrate indifference towards Andersonville’s prisoners, he was, in part, a scapegoat and some evidence against him was fabricated entirely. He was found guilty and sentenced to die on November 10 in Washington, D.C. On the scaffold, Wirz reportedly said to the officer in charge, “I know what orders are, Major. I am being hanged for obeying them.” The 41-year-old Wirz was one of the few people convicted and executed for crimes committed during the Civil War.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: A popular procedure in ancient Rome was scar removal, particularly scars on the back which were marks of shame because they suggested a man had turned his back in battle—or worse, he had been whipped like a slave. Foreigners would also have plastic surgery to fit better into Roman society.

…Early Light

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Our national anthem speaks about a glorious sight that was seen at the dawn’s early light: Old Glory still standing after a night of warfare.  It must have been an inspiring and stirring sight, indeed.

There is a reason that they speak of the hour on each side of dawn and of dusk as the “golden hour” in photography.  The light is special and it brings out tones and colors, light and shade, in a magical way.

I shot this picture early last Friday at a small lagoon on the lake by where we live.  I’ve been shooting the turning of the leaves, but every once in a while, I get a picture that even makes me smile.  This is one of those pictures.  I’m thrilled to share it with you!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY:  on this day in 1941, the Combine Japanese Fleet received Top-Secret Order No. 1: In 34 days time, Pearl Harbor was to be bombed, along with Mayala, the Dutch East Indies, and the Philippines.

Relations between the United States and Japan had been deteriorating quickly since Japan’s occupation of Indochina in 1940 and the implicit menacing of the Philippines (an American protectorate), with the occupation of the Cam Ranh naval base only eight miles from Manila. American retaliation included the seizing of all Japanese assets in the States and the closing of the Panama Canal to Japanese shipping. In September 1941, Roosevelt issued a statement, drafted by British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, that threatened war between the United States and Japan should the Japanese encroach any further on territory in Southeast Asia or the South Pacific.

The Japanese military had long dominated Japanese foreign affairs; although official negotiations between the U.S. secretary of state and his Japanese counterpart to ease tensions were ongoing, Hideki Tojo, the minister of war who would soon be prime minister, had no intention of withdrawing from captured territories. He also construed the American “threat” of war as an ultimatum and prepared to deliver the first blow in a Japanese-American confrontation: the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

And so Tokyo delivered the order to all pertinent Fleet commanders, that not only the United States—and its protectorate the Philippines—but British and Dutch colonies in the Pacific were to be attacked. War was going to be declared on the West.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY:  Burger King’s Triple Whopper with cheese has an amazing 1,230 calories. Hardies Monster Thickburger has 1,420 calories and 2,770 grams of sodium. Carl’s Jr.’s Double Six hamburger has 1,520 calories and 111 grams of fat. Most people need only 44-66 grams of fat per day, and most of them should come from sources like nuts, fish, and olive oil.

…and Aflame

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Double click the image for a larger version of the picture

It’s just starting, really, I think.  I’ve not been in Georgia in this time of year before, so I’m not real sure what to expect as far as the turning of the trees in the fall.  I guess I’ll must have to wait a few more weeks to find out if gets much better than this.

I took this picture just this morning.  I’d actually hoped for a day without fog on the little lakes that are just down the hill from us, but it the mist was rising from the lakes so I shot pictures anyway.  The sun had risen just enough behind me to reach the base of the trees at the waterline, giving them a bit of a glow with the mist and bright light at water’s edge.

I’m under no illusions: I know this fall won’t be like the turning of the season in Maine (unbelievably beautiful if you’ve never seen it!), but I always enjoy this time of year.

Happy Halloween, everyone!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1991, the so-called “perfect storm” hit the North Atlantic producing remarkably large waves along the New England and Canadian coasts. Over the next several days, the storm spread its fury over the ocean off the coast of Canada. The fishing boat Andrea Gail and its six-member crew were lost in the storm. The disaster spawned the best-selling book The Perfect Storm by Sebastian Junger and a blockbuster Hollywood movie of the same name.

On October 27, Hurricane Grace formed near Bermuda and moved north toward the coast of the southeastern United States. Two days later, Grace continued to move north, where it encountered a massive low pressure system moving south from Canada. The clash of systems over the Atlantic Ocean caused 40-to-80-foot waves on October 30—unconfirmed reports put the waves at more than 100 feet in some locations. This massive surf caused extensive coastal flooding, particularly in Massachusetts; damage was also sustained as far south as Jamaica and as far north as Newfoundland.

The storm continued to churn in the Atlantic on October 31; it was nicknamed the “Halloween storm.” It came ashore on November 2 along the Nova Scotia coast, then, as it moved northeast over the Gulf Stream waters, it made a highly unusual transition into a hurricane. The National Hurricane Center made the decision not to name the storm for fear it would alarm and confuse local residents. It was only the eighth hurricane not given a name since the naming of hurricanes began in 1950.

Meanwhile, as the storm developed, the crew of the 70-foot fishing boat Andrea Gail was fishing for swordfish in the Grand Banks of the North Atlantic. The Andrea Gail was last heard from on October 28. When the boat did not return to port on November 1 as scheduled, rescue teams were sent out.

The week-long search for the Andrea Gail and a possible cause of its demise were documented in Junger’s book, which became a national bestseller. Neither the Andrea Gail nor its crew—David Sullivan and Robert Shatford of Gloucester, Mass.; William Tyne, Dale Murphy and Michael Moran of Bradenton Beach, Fla.; and Alfred Pierre of New York City—was ever found.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY:  “Souling” is a medieval Christian precursor to modern-day trick-or-treating. On Hallowmas (November 1), the poor would go door-to-door offering prayers for the dead in exchange for soul cakes.

All That Glitters

“All that glitters is not gold.”  Have you heard that before?  It’s line from Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice.  You know, Shakespeare was a pretty wise man, besides being a passable playwright.  There is much wisdom in that brief line (and yes, know the original is “All that glisters is not gold”).  Throughout history it seems that people are tremendously motivated by gold (or in our age, by “green”), relentlessly pursuing bigger and bigger piles of the stuff in an attempt to get rich.  Some have succeeded spectacularly, but most don’t hit the “big time.”  Sadly, in the process they miss what I believe are far greater riches.

Is there anything in the world that can compare to the feel of a child’s arms running to the door to greet you, leaping up into your arms and throwing their tiny arms around you neck and squeezing as hard as they can?  Or the smile on their face when they open a birthday or Christmas present, or a “just because I love you” present?  Can anything equal the loving smile of a wife or husband, or the hug of support during difficult times?  How about the tail-wagging greeting of a beloved dog who literally dances for joy and spins around in circles because you’re home?  What about the wonder of laying outside at night, gazing up in wonder at the vast expanse of the universe, pondering the size and scope, trying to sense the coldness of the deep, black, empty spaces separating stars and galaxies?  You may not enjoy that, but what about music, photography, reading, being with friends?

In our pursuit of gold/green, it is easy to sacrifice things such as these for a few more coin.  And in the process, we often miss out on the most wonderful treasures of all.

Photography is one of the things that gives me joy and fills my life with riches (not of the monetary kind!)  On those occasions when a picture really “pops” and delights me, I revel in it.  Today’s picture is a reminder to me that all that glitters is not gold…

All That Glitters is Not Gold

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 30 BC the foxy chick known to the world as Cleopatra, died.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: the smallest mammal in North America is the pygmy shrew.  It weighs less than 1/14th of an ounce – less than a dime.

 

Autumn Barn

On a recent spectacular fall morning, I was driving a back road searching for something to photograph.  I was particularly searching for either color (vineyards turning in the fall), interesting lines/patterns (which you sometimes get in the vineyards depending on their layout), barns or just about anything else that was interesting.  I LOVE going on such hunts!!!  And the thrill of discovery when you find something that looks interesting!!

On that particular morning, I knew there were a few barns down this narrow, two-lane vineyard road.  I wasn’t disappointed.  Here’s one of the shots I got that morning:

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1904, President Teddy Roosevelt wrote a letter of approval to a distant cousin named Franklin who wanted to marry the President’s niece, Eleanor.  You know who they became…President Franklin Delano and Eleanor Roosevelt.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: human skin has about 100,000 bacteria per square centimeter.  About 10% of the dry weight of humans is composed of bacteria.

 

Now That’s What I’m Talkin’ About

It seemed this year that the nice color was missing in the vineyards.  I must say that if I compare it to last year, this year doesn’t measure up.  For whatever reason (I’m told it has to do with severe and significant weather changes at that right time), the color this year just hasn’t measured up.  Two or three weeks ago, I was talking to my wife as we were driving down highway 101 that the colors this year seemed rather dull and dingy.  She agreed.

Maybe we complained just a bit too soon, or we were just too impatient, because now the colors are better.  I won’t say that they equal last year (which was the best year for color in the vineyards that’d I’d seen in our 9 years here), but they are beautiful in spots now.  I don’t know if they’ll get much better than this for this fall because so many of the leaves have already fallen, but there are some really pretty vineyards at the moment.

Today’s photo was taken next to the Trione winery on the east side of highway 101.  I took it on Saturday when Laurel was gone with my sister to, well, you guessed it, shop.

Maybe tomorrow I’ll share a picture that I took using a new technique called focus stacking.  It’s rather interesting.  I’ve only tried it twice, and I have a way to go before I’m good at it, but it offers some really exciting possibilities for a photographer when used with the right type of scene.

But for now, on to the vineyard!!!!

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY: in 1949, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer hit the music charts, becoming THE musical hit of the holiday season.  Gene Autry’s version was the most popular, but it’s been recorded over 80 times and over 20 million copies have been sold.

TRIVIA FOR TODAY: Americans consume 353 million pounds of turkey during National Turkey Lover’s Month (June), but over 675 million pounds during Thanksgiving (and some years, I think I’ve eaten half that amount all by myself…but not this year!)