Where You Stand Matters

Being in the right place, at the right time, with the right subject, with the wind blowing in your face. Three out of four is okay, but sometimes you need all four things to get the shot you want. Still, good practice on taking pictures of an eagle diving for its meal.

The Watcher

The wood duck is not normally in this tree stump at Huntley Meadows. Then again, it must be interested in what the geese were doing.

Curiosity is a wondrous thing. And not limited to humans.

Vinyl Memories

I was at church last night and I saw a young couple in front of my wife and I. Has it been that long since the lithe figures in front of me was something readily seen by looking at a mirror? Nostalgia, a remembrance of half forgotten days that seem more whole than the stored fragments show them to be. And then I looked upon the dusty turntable and put some vinyl on the plate. The arm fell with a click, a few pops were heard, not unlike the noises emanating from the early morning stretch. And the music played. And tune after tune rose from the twin boxes in front of me. The sounds that were always in my mind was playing between my ears and then a smile. A person that grows and learns is never old. One need not be defined by wrinkles and added girth. As long as a sense of wonder remains, time’s arrow always moves forward. No matter the age, adventure beckons. Sense it, hold it, go for it. And live.

The wonders never ceased.

The Beauty of the Ignored

We look at the world and often times only seek out the beautiful. We are the poorer for it. When we only value that which pleases the senses, we miss out on so much of what the world has to offer.

We look at the empty trees reflected on the water and think nothing of it. The wind whispers to us to look again.

The Thaw

After several days of cold weather, of on and off snow showers, the morning brought a chill that soon gave way to the warmer days of late February. The ice, little as there was, was melting into water. And Huntley Meadows was wet. Which will suits the gulls and the mergansers just fine.

Congratulations, Perseverance Team!

After years of planning, the United States has another rover on the surface of the Red Planet. Well done, NASA and the Perseverance team! Thank you for all the hard work that you and countless number of support people have done to make this possible. Truly a milestone in the exploration of our solar system. With luck, the copter will work better than planned. I was so pleased to see the countdown today and look at the control room. A multiracial, multiethnic, multi gender group of individuals came together and achieved something greater than any of them could have done by themselves. People of all ages. Amazing. I remember how few women were graduating from engineering/science school when I was an undergrad. Look at them now. America at its best – where opportunity is open to everyone, where excellence is achieved through hard work and study. The words of John F. Kennedy still ring true – we do this not because it is easy, but because it is hard. Well done!

Reflected Indifference

We are trapped in the trappings of ease and seeming contentment, failing to see the world and what it has to offer. A construct we build for ourselves and even a pandemic isn’t enough to break the habits that have taken its toll on modern society. We can be indifferent to the world around us. And what does that do? It divides us from each other. And in our isolation, we seek only those who think and behave like us. We fail to learn. We fail to grow. We fail our world. We fail ourselves. Within us is the desire to belong, not just to one group, but to all. We often seek dominance and yet wonder why humility and kindness brought a revolution to the world. If we are to be what we can be, we need to look up from the small screens that occupy our attention and partake in the universal journey that we all share. Life on a planet called earth. On a system of planets that revolve around a yellow sun. A myriad of stars, different colors, different sizes. In the arm of a spiraling collection of stars, itself part of a cluster of galaxies. Where forces, known and unknown, bring new possibilities. A destiny shared amongst the denizens of a universe, itself but one in a myriad of universes.

And so, why look down when you can look up. And see the world.