Sunday, April 28, 2013

Jefferson: April 28, 2013

Washington, DC has so many great memorials, museums and other places of interest.  My favorite DC landmark is the Jefferson Memorial.  I love sitting on the steps facing the Tidal Basin and watching the excitement on the faces of the tourists.  You never know what language or culture you will experience on any given day.  I could sit all day and soak it all in.  

Sunday, April 21, 2013

The Blowing Rock: April 21, 2013

I miss Blowing Rock.  When I lived in North Carolina, Blowing Rock was my getaway spot. The town was close enough to make a last-minute weekend trip, or even a day trip.  I loved the scenic, twisting, turning journey to get there.  The town offers incredible vistas, unique shops and galleries, bed-and-breakfast inns, plentiful restaurants and even an outlet mall.  But I did not go to Blowing Rock to shop.  The lure of Blowing Rock was the peace and serenity attached to the mountain views.  In addition to being the name of the town, there is also a legendary cliff known as The Blowing Rock, which lies thousands of feet above the beautiful Johns River Gorge.  The cliff is named The Blowing Rock because the walls of the gorge force the winds to sweep up with such force that light objects cast over the cliff are blown back to the cliff. This phenomena prompted a Ripley’s “Believe It or Not” cartoon about “the only place in the world where snow falls upside down.” The Blowing Rock is also the focus of  a legendary story about two Native American lovers.  The following is an account of the Legend of The Blowing Rock quoted from The Blowing Rock website.

It is said that a Chickasaw chieftan, fearful of a white man’s admiration for his lovely daughter, journeyed far from the plains to bring her to The Blowing Rock and the care of a squaw mother. One day the maiden, daydreaming on the craggy cliff, spied a Cherokee brave wandering in the wilderness far below and playfully shot an arrow in his direction. The flirtation worked because soon he appeared before her wigwam, courted her with songs of his land and they became lovers, wandering the pathless woodlands and along the crystal streams.

One day a strange reddening of the sky brought the brave and the maiden to The Blowing Rock. To him it was a sign of trouble commanding his return to his tribe in the plains. With the maiden’s entreaties not to leave her, the brave, torn by conflict of duty and heart, leaped from The Rock into the wilderness far below. The grief-stricken maiden prayed daily to the Great Spirit until one evening with a reddening sky, a gust of wind blew her lover back onto The Rock and into her arms. From that day a perpetual wind has blown up onto The Rock from the valley below. 

I have to concede that I have never tossed an object off The Blowing Rock to see if it would be blown back.  Nor have I seen the snow fall upside down.  It doesn't matter whether those things are true or not.  I like The Blowing Rock just the way it is.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Seven Seas: April 14, 2013

No, I was not alive back in the the 50's, but I did take this photo.  I think the photographer's eye is trained to survey the environment and focus in on interesting scenes, patterns and colors.  This scene revealed itself as I drove in Coral Gables, Florida.  In the midst of the traffic, I was drawn to the colors of the Seven Seas restaurant.  The vintage automobile parked outside was the icing on the cake.  An quick (and probably illegal) u-turn landed me in the parking lot.  I walked around surveying different angles until I got just the shot I wanted.  

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Standing Out in the Crowd: April 7, 2013

In 2005 I invited a very talented artist from Australia to Atlanta to participate in the Atlantis Music Conference.  During the time that she was here, we went to visit the Georgia Music Hall of Fame in Macon, Georgia. There was a lot of interesting memorabilia and many interesting displays.  One that caught my attention was a case full of guitars.  Visually I was struck by the beauty of the instruments and the patterns they created.  I loved the different textures as well as the intricate combination of wood and steel.  But what really caught my attention was the red guitar in the middle.  I immediately associated the guitars with people.  Each guitar had its own unique features, colors and textures, yet they all worked the same way to produce music, but only when they were carefully tuned and placed in the right hands.  And then there was the red one.  We all know a red guitar or two; those people who shine and stand out in the crowd no matter who's around them.  In fact, I was with a red guitar.  I looked at her and smiled, and moved to the next display.