Out for a walk on a beach preserved by the Nature Conservancy, plant life in the dunes is amazingly diverse.
The county to the north of me is plagued with a wildfire. Fire tornados – yes! they exist! – are reaching 2000 F. The area has not burned in 60 years.
Yesterday, with a meetup group, I went on an early morning hike and photo shoot. It’s dry, dry, dry out there. Today it is supposed to reach 101 F. A fire could make all this disappear. While perhaps seeming barren, this is a rich, diverse landscape, teaming with life and plants – home to many, refuge for the likes of me.
We are part of the problem, part of the solution. When a landscape burns, we all lose, even if the fire is part of the natural habitat. Years of fire burn control, coupled with a drought, and we have catastrophe awaiting.
And in that burn, new life will bloom again. How we control it may determine its future.
The world is filled with all sorts of things. First impressions are the most powerful. The most recent is what we remember best in short term. All of these can be wrong.
In random film photography, that is usually the case. I see something, full of life and color, and then get an image back from the lab which is dull and lifeless. Technology steps in and I can digitally render it to my liking. Advertising does this, too. So does propaganda and misinformation and disinformation. What we find to be “right” and “wrong” usually has an emotional basis tied in with childhood-instilled ideas. To quote the song from the musical South Pacific, “You have to be carefully taught to hate who your relatives hate . . . you have to be carefully taught.”
As an adult, you need to filter this love and hate, and begin to think. What makes something right or wrong? Can you tell me?
Of course, when you do, we discover your “what is” may be very different than my “what is.” This starts the conversation and the connection.
Achillea is also known as yarrow. In Greek mythology, Achilles’ soldiers used it as a medicine, and in some parts of the world, it is still seen as a medicinal herb. Plants are such cool things!
Another cool thing is film, and old cameras. This picture was taken using a 1941 Weltur Weltini using 35mm Kodak Gold 200. It takes a bit more time to make a photo using these old cameras, and once in the moment of it, time falls away. No chimping here, just when it comes back from the lab!
Slowing down is hard to do.
The title of this post may be a bit sappy, but it does say what I mean. Yesterday was a hard day at work dealing with kids, one of whom didn’t like the fact he was warned about his behavior in the classroom. He called Daddy. Daddy called us. This is a spoiled child whose parents have empowered him to do whatever he wants. We have a potential Stanford rapist in the making, another child suffering affluenza. Why do parents fail to let their children fail these days?
So, a springtime of the mind is needed. There are little nasty events that occur in all our lives, sometimes regularly, sometimes sporadically. To give in to a negative attitude because of negativity takes away from us as individuals.
Here is to the simple joy of a wild flower!
This morning was kind of funny . . . I woke up from a deep, deep sleep and couldn’t recall what day it was, whether it was the weekend or a workday. The calendar on my phone told me. It’s rather a nice but eerie feeling, a clean slate, something so new there is nothing on the horizon! Mornings like this are so exciting, a whole adventure lies ahead.
In my isolated world, I learn about murder and hatred through the media. Orlando, Florida, today. Yesterday, a young man skinned alive in Afghanistan. The rape of the Emily Doe in Stanford. It goes on and on. What causes all this? Malthusian theory comes to mind. It is very difficult to be a person in any age, but the calling of “be of the world but not in it” has its allure. To everyone who has lost someone to violence or hatred, or been injured by another, it is easy to say “get over it,” but there are some things which change you forever. You are in my thoughts.
In our world, wild areas are vanishing. Some animals can make it in more urban environments, like coyotes and raccoons, while others are pushed to the brink of extinction, if not actual extinction. Climate change. Humans. Thoughtlessness.
Preserving what we have around us helps. Small areas, such as a wetlands, create safe havens. The Nature Conservancy does just this: buy land, keep people out. Take people out for tours in ways which do not damage the environment. Work with communities to preserve the land around them.