Little moments can have a feeling and a texture that is very real. ~ Ralph Fiennes
An interesting study in textures – the pot, the trivet, the table.
“How strange this fear of death is! We are never frightened at a sunset.” ~ George MacDonald, Scottish author, poet and Christian minister (1824 – 1905), particularly for his poignant fairy tales and fantasy novels
Just another sunset outside my front door – wish I had a direct view of the western hills, but no, I see houses. Sigh. Next home, maybe.
Most towns in the Central Valley of California have an annual harvest festival celebrating a main crop in the area. Gilroy has it’s famous Garlic Festival, nearby Watsonsville has its huge Strawberry Festival in nearby Monterey, and my little hamlet has its Apricot Fiesta (yeah, definitely small town web site that needs help).
This picture, similar to my photo of the cherries in the neighboring field (to right), shows the apricots almost ready for picking. My wife loves these things, but I just don’t like them – no matter how sweet an apricot you can find, I still find them too tart. I just don’t like ’em. Ick.
Here’s a few more versions of this photo – first, the original, un-enhanced photo, plus many others – the filters are still fun to play with, what can I say.
“Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God.” ~ Lenny Bruce
Although Lenny Bruce was known as a comedian, this tidbit has a lot of truth in it. Many churches are just meaningless social clubs, self-righteous hallelujah clubs, or something worse. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in the type of ‘organized’ religion where people of like mind and spirit gather to worship God and serve humanity in love and truth, and I believe there are distinct benefits to spiritual community that can not be found in solo spirituality – such things as the multiplication of effort, encouragement during hard times, the power of corporate worship, and the bonds built in service to one another and community.
One of my favorite things about church is the community feeling of it, and of course, the food that lubricates that community. In this pic, my kids are eating donuts and juice. I think it’s cute.
“The temple bell stops but I still hear the sound coming out of the flowers.” ~ Matsu Basho, Japanese poet (1644 – 1694)
Flowers is perty. That’s all I have to say about that.
“And in the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.” ~ Abraham Lincoln
Our friend Richard is a pastry chef, and instructor of such at the California Culinary Institute. One fantastic benefit, besides his winning personality and good looks, is we get awesome cakes for celebrations. This white cake with passion-fruit icing was, um awesome.
“You have to walk carefully in the beginning of love; the running across fields into your lover’s arms can only come later when you’re sure they won’t laugh if you trip.” ~ Jonathan Carroll
Panoramas are fun. This field is along Hwy 5 just south of Tracy, CA. I just like the feel of the open country. And this spot is where I photographed the thistles gone to seed. Here’s some additional versions, including the original (first one below).
If God would choose a plant to represent him, I think he would choose of all plants the cactus. The cactus has all the blessings he tried, but mostly failed, to give to man. Let me tell you how. It has humility, but it is not submissive. It grows where no other plant will grow. It does not complain when the sun bakes it back or the wind tears it from the cliff or drowns it in the dry sand of the desert or when it is thirsty. When the rain comes it stores water for the hard times to come.
In good times and in bad it will still flower. It protects itself against danger, but it harms no other plant. It adapts perfectly to almost any environment. It has patience and enjoys solitude. In Mexico there is a cactus that flowers only once every hundred years and at night. This is saintliness of an extraordinary kind, would you not agree? The cactus has properties that heal the wounds of men and from it come potions that can make man touch the face of God or stare into the mouth of hell. It is the plant of patience and solitude, love and madness, ugliness and beauty, toughness and gentleness. Of all plants, surely God made the cactus in his own image. ~ from The Power of One: A Novel ~ Bryce Courtenay
These cactus grow all over California and Mexico, and Mexicans like to eat them. As you may recall, the leaves are called nopales and are often made into salsa, and the fruit of these is sometimes called “tuna,” and is also edible. The official name of the plant is opuntia.