Saturday, January 3, 2009

Angels of Ditson Street

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The last days of packing up the garden items were taken care of by The Husband long after we both were tired and completely burned out on packing and moving. He worked hard and alone on a couple of trips, leaving me in Bear Valley Springs since I was no help lifting the heavy items anyway. Because I wasn’t there to see things packed, it didn’t come as a total shock to me when I recently began looking for some things that I couldn’t find. Specifically, I was looking for the angel who guarded the furthest corner of the back yard—the area I called the secret garden largely due to its being shrouded in the limbs of the apricot tree and dozens of potted plants along with the old wooden garden furniture. The angel is tall and graceful with a lovely smile, and I always considered her the mother of all the wounded angels that I had collected over the years. Ultimately, we gave up the search and realized that the angel, along with a few other items, had been overlooked that last trip that The Husband made to clear out everything in the yard.

Hope was restored when I inadvertently sent an order to the old Ditson address. In a bleary-eyed moment, I obviously failed to notice that the ship-to address wasn’t current. Because the husband had an impending business trip to make to Los Angeles, it seemed that order would be restored. The angel would come to live with us and her little band of children; the package would finally arrive; all would be fine.

When The Husband arrived to pick up the package, as pre-arranged with the new owners of the house on Ditson, he asked about the angel and sure enough there she was proudly ensconced on the deck—perhaps lonely without her family, but still smiling and looking lovely, I am told. The gentleman assured The Husband that certainly it would be fine for him to take the angel, but just then the man’s wife came outside and was brought up to date on the conversation. The Husband saw her face fall when she heard the news and when pressed she asked if she could buy the angel, since she had come to think of her as blessing their new home. Well, The Husband didn’t have the heart to remove a blessing from the home of the new owners. They are lovely people and seem to be extremely happy and excited about their home. This was only their fourth Chrismas in the USA, and they are not only crazy about this country, but thrilled to have their very own home in such a beautiful place.

Of course, I will miss my angel, but she is still very much at home, and I will remember her fondly as she continues to oversee the little house that was our home for so many years. The story is a little late in the telling, yet it still seems a fitting one for this time of year. May our angel smile over the house and grounds, along with the new family, and may they all be safe and happy for many years to come.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Blogging While Under the Influence

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Frank Armstrong called attention to an oversight in yesterday’s post, but I am claiming temporary mental incompetence due to the influence of a stubborn and nasty stomach upset. Frank's comment, makes it clear that I left the impression I am dreaming of cameras and lenses. I meant to say that I dreamed of using my cameras and lenses. Omitting a critical word from a sentence is almost never a good idea. It leaves far too much room for wrong impressions.

Of course, I admit to fleeting daydreams about owning cameras that are more sophisticated than the ones that I own, but I am painfully aware of my own need to rise to the level of the cameras that I do have. When I daydream 2009, I am using cameras and lenses even more regularly than I do now. 2008 represented, for me, a big jump in the numbers of photos taken. I have reached that point now where it is difficult for me to leave the house without my camera. I feel a bit naked if I don’t have at least one with me. The 40D has made more trips now to the Tehachapi Albertson’s than I ever imagined. Although I don’t photograph every moment that the camera is with me, I do feel that I need it on my shoulder, just in case. While in 2007 I may have shot one or two days a week, I now take at least a few photos an average of five or six days out of the week. (Well, I confess that the last couple of days I haven’t picked up the camera, but I had, ahem, other matters to occupy my full attention.)

I still count myself in the early stages of this obsession with making pictures. I read, I experiment, I take hundreds of shots—each month, far more than will ever be seen by anyone other than myself. Of course, all this raises the question, “Why aren’t I a better photographer, by now?” That’s a question I am not ready to tackle today. My stomach isn’t steady enough for that level of self-examination.

Thanks, Frank, for sending me back to this post. I use daydreaming and imagery to point my consciousness in certain directions and without specifics I could succeed in aiming myself toward a ditch.

P.S. Doug Stockdale alerted me to a glitch here at Blogger. He tried to leave a Happy New Year wish and was repeatedly rejected. I hope that issue is resolved by now.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

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Happy New Year to one and all.

I have been fighting a bug for a couple of days and guess who's winning. I'll be back soon—after my head and stomach stop spinning in opposite directions, with photos and cheery posts about what's happening in Bear Valley Springs.

I had been doing some reviewing of good old 2008 and thinking about what 2009 holds. While 2008 ended in what was not exactly the difference between a bang and a whimper—it was more of a dull thud, I am looking forward to to this new kid. I don't make hard and fast resolutions, but I am big on dreams and fantasies of what the coming year will bring. Mostly those mental images revolve around light, cameras, and lenses. But, that's just part of the bigger picture. I have already dreamed enough stories to fill up two years.

Happy New Year!

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