Friday, December 20, 2013
Friday, December 13, 2013
Houston, like most towns in the USA are lit up at night year around. This time of year, Christmas time, many homes and businesses add lights to brighten our nights even more. I decided to not post Christmas lights for what lights up my town, but to show the atmosphere that is around us all of the time. This particular place is a about 10 miles from home, (Patty’s house) and a great place to go at most times of the year for a hamburger and a beer. The Fountains, on the Southwest Freeway at Kirkwood, has a string of restaurants along a man-made pond. Lots of lights, outside seating, warm air, high humidity nearly all year round, blasting music muted by the water and humidity and more bright lights, being absorbed into the atmosphere, makes it just right for a stroll along the water’s edge.
Saturday, December 07, 2013
This time of year it is all about rushing. Rush to work, and home; company parties, shopping, children’s plays, recitals, shopping, dinner parties and more shopping. There should be no limit to the possible photo ops and I have found myself with ZERO photos on the camera. I carried the camera with me all week. Nothing. Two days ago I began looking through the Houston archives. Nothing.
I suggested this topic. Surely I had an idea for a photo to post. Nothing comes to mind. Last week Patty and I went shopping for Thanksgiving dinner supplies, the lines were miles long, everyone in a rush to get home. Did I take an interesting photo – NO. On Thursday night we went to Wal-Mart to see ‘black Friday’ activities. It was a madhouse people acting like idiots, rushing about then standing in a line that wound around the store, probably a quarter mile long. No dollar saved was worth standing in that line. Did I take photos – NO. Are you getting the idea that this is a disclaimer?
Right at this moment in time I don’t work. In fact, I avoid going out between 6 – 8 am and if I do go out, I try to be back at the house or hiding in a coffee shop between 4 and 6pm. Houston is a ‘get there by car or don’t go at all’ town. Missouri city does not have any mass transit options. Avoiding rush hour out this direction is a matter of survival. Today I took two photo – snap shots really – that can give you an idea of what a society driven by cars means on a daily basis.
looking north on a Saturday afternoon.
and inside a store… we were 10th in line
Saturday, November 30, 2013
The guys that work hard to make the game play stay inside the rules.
and the cheerleaders, who are working Hard keep us enthusiastic even when the score went to
56 Katy TIGERs to 26 Elkin’s Knights. Ouch!
Saturday, November 23, 2013
Over and over, as my posts from the past when I was visiting Houston show, my car loves to go out into the country. And if time allows I end up, over and over, at the same places. (Drat - it is thundering, and lightening I may have to shut down AGAIN)
(next Day! no more thunder but is COLD) Often my car drive to the Brazos Bend State Park, Oyster Creek Park, Kitty Hollow Park, the bird preserve out by Katy or just for fun takes a country road to nowhere.
For a different type of day I can drive West on HWY 90 for about 25 minutes and there is what used to be the small town of Richmond. Now we say Richmond – Rosenberg because these two small towns have grown so they meet making one big, no personality city. But there is a small area of ‘old town Richmond’ right off 90 that the locals have tried to preserve and make into a small but pleasant place to walk, shop for antiques and local crafts, and have a good old fashioned drugstore hamburger for lunch.
The hamburger is okay but the shops are a lot of fun, a stroll down memory lane for me. Old glass and other collectables line the walls and windows.
Just one way that my car, camera and I spend a pleasant Sunday afternoon.
Friday, November 08, 2013
I used this format in one of my other posts on black and white and liked very much seeing the comparisons and reading everyone’s comments – so my FSO experiments in black and white editing.
Friday, November 01, 2013
you find proof of a world not seen.
This is a grassland restoration area just on the edge of Missouri City, Texas. Normally it looks like, well like grassland.
But on this particular morning’s walk, coming around a bend, the trail took me directly into bright sun shinning through fog;
a secret world not normally seen.
Proof of life visible for as far as the eye could see.
Sunday, October 27, 2013
While walking through the historic center of Rome it is easy to get distracted by all the things to see: people, gelato signs, police cars weaving through the tourist with their light flashing, grand doors and door knobs, graffiti, just so much to see. But I will recommend that from time to time you just stand still and look up.
be sure to plant your feet to avoid a bit of vertigo, what you see soaring above your head will astound you.
Friday, October 25, 2013
This will be my final FSO post from Rome. I return to Houston next Wednesday morning. Like one of my blogger friends pointed out this stay in Rome has been bittersweet. Memories of visits here with Camillo from the past 20 years; knowing that he would love the things I’ve done that are different than we had done together; renting the apartment would be one of those. He always wanted to go, see something new or to show me something wonderful that he remembered from his past lives. Staying in Rome for a month is something he never wanted to do, but I did. We didn’t argue about it, there is too much to see to stay in one place, that is a given, but I know he would have loved my little apartment in the middle of a Roman neighborhood with its small supermarket and butcher shops. He would love the daily walks, the few meals with his sister and he would love hearing my enthusiasm for what I have done. And the bittersweet; missing that he is not here to learn I was right, a stay in one place can be wonderful.
Sorry sidetracked. This week’s FSO topic is Mysteries in Your Town, and Rome once again being My Town for the Week has caused me to be on the look out for a mystery, “A Mystery Look around town, can you find something that makes you feel bewildered? Or leaves you wondering what's up with that?” as I have walked and walked about Rome. I have big questions like, ‘how has a city survived since 700 years before Christ’; surviving wars, pestilence and governments, and changes in religious fervor. (governments and pestilence being basically the same thing) There have been a few things that astounds me though, however does that man sit on a pole held in one hand of another man, for hours and hours. Doesn’t that pole hurt after a while, doesn’t that man’s arm get tired. I saw six of these ….. course they were all dressed alike, did not have the usual cup to donate to their pain, so it could have been the same men just moving from square to square. I don’t see a trick, they are in a different state of consciousness?
We have all read of the economic climate in Europe and in Africa, and the boat people swamping Italy, often dying in the attempt, and if arriving safely moving northward in an attempt to find a better life for their families. It is a tide, a tsunami, and on a humanitarian level I understand the governments allowing this to continue, though I fear there is no humanitarian motive just inaction. But if humanitarian motives prevailed, how do you not let them come where there is food, and lodging - except there isn’t. There are no jobs in which they qualify, and old buildings are being invaded for housing with no proper plumbing, running water or heat but are still perceived as better from where they come, a safe roof over their heads. So they squat where they can; they sell things – trinkets, and junk made in china, purses with designer names but made of plastic, and they clog the streets; stepping into your path to try to sell a ‘silk’ scarf or a plastic toy. Desperation in their movements.
To me Rome is a museum of world history, beautiful and full of grace; housed in Rome but belonging to the world. And now it is being invaded by a new foe, and invading army of poor and displaced. The masses blocking the streets, letting only a little path through. I wish I had my 35mm photos so you could see this bridge from 20 years ago, one of the most beautiful sights you might ever see, and now junk.
The mystery: can the governments not stop this tide? Can action be taken that allows these travelers to stay at home and survive. This is such a similar story as the illegal immigrants that find their way into the USA. Why can’t these problems be solved. We have put men on the moon, taken photos of the rings of Jupiter, found new galaxies, waged wars with multimillion dollar weapons; why can’t we feed the hungry in their own home towns? This is my mystery.