In addition to being the 11th anniversary of my blog, yesterday also marked the 10th anniversary of a dear friend’s death.
My friend Elizabeth continues to be one of my personal heroes. She was an extraordinary person, but chose to live an ordinary life. Or at least what might appear from a distance to be an ordinary life. She didn’t seek fame or fortune, but valued the richness of her life, her friends, her family, and the many things in life that brought her joy. She was witty and insightful. She was warm and kind and incredibly supportive, but could show biting sense of humor. She cared deeply and passionately about the world, but also loved to let loose and get silly.
She died far too young, and I feel her loss still. There have been so many things over the past 10 years that I have wanted to share with her. To discuss, to celebrate, to lament.
I know that I am not the only one who continues to miss her. She had an impact on so many who knew and loved her. Her impact was not from any single great feat or action, but from the sum of countless moments of connection with others.
Her life was indeed extraordinary.
A fish sculpture in Paris. 2007.
When it gets late, and it gets tired, I typically find I don’t have the energy to do actual writing. All too often, this is what motivates me to post photos. Not to say that I don’t often have photos that I want to share, but posting photos over text has been my default when I’m tired.
The Majestic Cod of the Massachusetts State House, Boston. 2016.
And then I try to come up with a catchy title. But sometimes, a catchy title catches me. And makes me laugh a little inside. And makes me hunt down (or in this case, go fishing for) appropriate content to go with it. When in doubt, post a trout.
A gleeful boy taking a grouchy fish for a joyride. As seen on a bridge in Paris. 2007.
And so it was that I remembered that I have quite a few fish photos. Even more specifically, I have a bunch of photos of fish statues and sculptures, taken over quite a long period of time, and in quite a few different locations. (I was sorry to not find any fish sculptures in my photos from Asia, so it looks like I have only 2 continents represented. Unless you want to consider this startlingly shiny gold fish furniture from my hotel in Shanghai.
A shark shack in small town near Dublin, Ireland. 2014.
A surprised looking fish in Boston. Probably not a trout. 2016.
But I have a terrible confession to make: while I may have lots of photos of fish, I really don’t know whether there is a trout among them.
A deranged looking fish in London. Almost certainly not a trout. 2005.
A fish bone sculpture from the DeCordova Museum in Massachusetts. 2012
So, what say you? Can you find a trout among today’s catch?
I guess I may have my head in the clouds more than most, because I do find myself noticing the sky quite often, and even pointing it out to others. Take, for example, the rather spectacular, improbably pink sunset below, which I saw during my son’s soccer practice one evening.
I was completely entranced by the shape and color, and took quite a few photos. When the soccer practice ended, the other parents and I walked toward the filed to collect our kids. I asked the nearest parent: “Did you see that sunset?” In turns out that she had not, even though she had been sitting only a few feet away from me.
The composition below is another one I saw during a soccer practice. What the photo doesn’t quite capture is the the colorful right edge of the cloud, which had both pink and green.
And because I like to post things in sets of at least three, here is a non-sunset cloudscape from yesterday morning.
On my walk in the woods last weekend, my eye was caught by a particularly complicated-looking tree stump. Perhaps it was caused by the weather, or insects, or some combination thereof, but the wood of the stump was carved into an intricate display of spires and arches. It reminded me of a fantasy city, such as from the Lord of the Rings movies.
My daughter, though, tells me she sees ghosts and screaming faces. I can actually see this, too.
What do you see in the patterns fo the stump? A fantasy scene or a nightmare? Or do you, rather, see only the weathered and broken wood shards of a tree stump?
I enjoyed the way these ornamental grass seeds caught the light this morning when I was out on my walk. (I didn’t take a lot of photos this morning, because it was cold.) (And I’m not writing a lot of words tonight, because I’m tired.)
What happens when early November is warmer than usual? For one thing, your carved pumpkins may melt on your front steps, to the extent that you need to use a snow shovel to scoop them up.