Winter II

The color of springtime is in the flowers, the color of winter is in the imagination.

~ Terri Guillemets

Letting Go:  Of spending too much time at the computer.  I scheduled this post for today so I’d have time for other things, to get up from this chair and out into life.  I hope your weekend has been a most enjoyable one, balanced and filled with the good things in life.  I’ll be back tomorrow with more from the Quail Hollow hike.

The art of nature (20)

(Relaxing on the dock at sunset.)

Whenever I step outdoors this time of year I always feel like I’ve walked into a painting.  The colors are amazing, almost unreal at times.  Sunset yesterday was one of those times that was super-saturated with color.

(Color display at the back of the pond.)

M and I rowed out to the swim platform to celebrate what might be the last warm sunset of the season.  When we first went out we could see rain in the not-too-distant distance:

Thunder boomed frequently but we saw only one or two flashes of lightning.  The storms moved quickly, heading north and east of us.  We felt a few rain drops as the breeze picked up and the temperature dropped.

Eventually the sun came out from behind the clouds and added light to the color display.

It was a glorious evening.  We sat on the platform for about an hour or so, talking occasionally and enjoying the silences in between.  We rowed back to shore while it was still light enough to see.  I thought about staying longer but it cooled off quickly once the front moved through and the sun had set.

Today is day 20.  I wound up back in the woods, admiring the sunlight and shadows.

(Entering the woods.)

I found a patch of mushrooms that I attempted to photograph by playing around with manual settings.  I got some weird stuff but nothing worth putting on the blog until I’ve played around with it in Photoshop.  Even then it might be a waste of time and effort but I do like the sun flares and beams in some of the shots so it seems worth a try.  The mushrooms were near the creek where there is more light now than there was just a week or so ago.

One of the things I like about this time of year is that when I walk around the pond on a warm and sunny day, the kind of day in which the turtles and snakes like to sun themselves, I crunch through the leaves making enough noise to scare off the snakes and snapping turtles.  I have nothing against either of them but having read that snappers are quick and aggressive on land and, having had a snake crawl up my leg when I was the warmest thing out by the pond, well, I think it’s better all around if the snakes and snappers know when I’m approaching.

(Ripples and reflections.)

I never know how to end these posts so I’ll leave you with one of my favorite images from today and a quote…

(Life and death.)

Life is life, and death is life, and everything in between.  ~ Terri Guillemets

Morning Dew

(Morning Dew.)

I used to love night best but the older I get the more treasures and hope and joy I find in mornings.

~ Terri Guillemets

This was originally set up as a scheduled post but we have a few minutes this morning before we have to catch the train home so I figured I’d go ahead and post.

The photo is another from September 29th.

Yesterday we went out to visit Mom, so to speak.  She’s not really there, of course.  It’s just her grave and the place where her body now resides.  Dad wanted me to see the permanent  grave marker which, as you may recall, was not in place when I was there in April.

(Mom’s grave and the flowers we brought.)

It was a beautiful day to be outside.  M and I took a couple of half hour walks throughout the day just to enjoy it.  I almost complained about the heat of the sun at one point but stopped myself just in time with the reminder that we are not likely to experience many more days like this once we go back to the Bogs.  Clouds rule the late autumn and winter months.

On our way back from the cemetery we stopped off at the church where I was baptized in 1959.  I don’t know how many times I have passed that church and never knew I was baptized there.  Dad happened to mention it on our way to the cemetery.  He also showed us where Mom lived when he was dating her and the first place they lived when they got married.  He told a few stories about me.  Apparently I did not like grass when I was a toddler.  I refused to walk on it.  Funny.  Now I love to walk in the grass.  Barefoot, if possible.  Maybe I was worried about hurting it.

I took photos of the outside of the church and might post one when we return home.  As we were walking around the outside a man who was working in the church invited us to come in.  He introduced us to the priest there and Dad explained why we had stopped.  The priest showed us around.  The worker who let us in had just built a new altar for the church, hand carving all the woodwork.  It was beautiful work.  Amazing, really.  The church itself is 130 years old and suffered from some structural problems (buckling) that they managed to repair quite nicely.

I’m glad we stopped.  I’ve always wanted to see the inside.  The stain glass windows are dazzling.  It’s not a very big church but it is packed with simple, beautiful statues and icons.  They are getting ready to restore the Stations of the Cross which have been peeling and chipping over the years.

The afternoon was spent watching the Gamecocks beat the Crimson Tide (football — on television).  Now that was a BIG surprise.  Being USC fans (for good reason — M graduated from there and I was a student there for a year), it was a well-received surprise.

My sister and her husband did this yesterday.  I see they are having an event in Ohio next year.  It kind of looks like fun, and my sister and her hubby had a blast getting muddy and climbing around.  Might be worth considering if I really feel the need for a challenge (and a viking helmet).

Today’s outdoor adventure took me back to the park near the hotel where we stayed.  The morning was sunny, clear, and a little chilly.  M and I jogged a bit and then played on the exercise course.  Someday, if I practice, I might be able to do one chin-up.  Today I actually jumped high enough to hang from the chin-up bar.  That’s a vast improvement over the other day when I couldn’t reach it.  (Go ahead and laugh.  I did.)

I’d better wrap this up and pack up the computer.  It’s almost time to head to Philly, return the rental car, and hop on the train.  I wonder if the trees in the mountains have gotten a little more color in the past few days?