A landscape business down the road planted elegant bright blue flowers and I could not resist capturing these beautiful floral clusters. It certainly brightened up my day along with natures neighboring forested swamp.
Years ago I remember when Easter was a day to look forward to renewal. Renewal of the soul and also of wardrobe. My mother sewed grey dress up coats for the three girls, all matching buttons and tailored round collars. It was a lot of fun to shop at Alexanders for a straw hat that was embellished with artificial Spring flowers and black velvet ribbon. The shoes had to be for the most part white patent leather or red leather Mary Jane’s with matching handbags. White gloves were worn and handkerchiefs, small stuffed bunny or doll would become the contents of the bag. Early morning we would wake up to colorful cellophane adorned Easter baskets and stuffed bunnies. Chocolate eggs, jelly beans, a sugar egg that you looked inside to view a pictorial inside, butter cream eggs, all nested in straw. Easter Sunday mass was elegant, white lilies adorned the altar. The kids mass was held downstairs and the adults went upstairs. After mass we usually went to the Botanical Gardens to enjoy the beautiful Spring flowers and venture through the wooded trails to the Bronx River where the Saw Mill rest spot was located. We would try to tower over the gate to capture viewing all the waterfalls which lined the river bed. During the summer months this spot became a haven for refreshing oneself from the city heat.
Today, the Cycle Trail was quiet. It was a day to reflect on such memories and spiritual renewal. It was not traveled this time on Sunday because most gathered around ham or lamb at the dining room table. The silence of the woods became more than gratifying, peaceful with the air-filled up with soft chirping of birds, water gushing down rock lined beds. On Saturday I picked up a free ham at that grocery store, those shopping points do add up. The clerk at checkout was nice enough to point this freebie out to me. On Monday I will figure out how to cook it in the crock pot. With an internet search that figuring was easy, all I need is a can of pineapple and maple syrup. The reviews sounded positive so worth a wing, this is nothing like what my mother experienced to create a ham dinner that will last me for a week!
‘It is an absolute necessity for me to cycle trails. It is a similar experience to a drive through movie but more interactive because the bicycle is in constant transit and you get to commune with natures screen.’
Local communities often have meet-up groups for singles and people who just enjoy the same interest. Luckily a trail is within a stones throw from where I reside and today I took a short spin to enjoy the sounds of a babbling brook. It was quite peaceful and serene. The ground still casts some snow cover but it is melting because the weather is changing to a more enjoyable comfortable climate. People are starting to venture outdoors with dogs in tow to enjoy some fresh air and I spotted a few. The woods still appears bare but tranquil. Babbling brook water is crystal clear from snow melt as shown in the short video posted below.
The bright yellow sunflowers in the backyard have faded and fallen by chipmunks and squirrels. They jumped upon the long stalks to harvest its seeds. The sunflowers were grown for wildlife to appreciate as well as for my own backyard pleasure. This season has been especially unpredictable with unheard of warm spells, however, the tomato plants are still active. Autumn colors have not transpired like last years glorious displays. Perhaps it is due to the lack of rainfall. I remembered going out in a rain shower for a walk and able to enjoy the landscapes. I enjoy Autumn when nature progresses each week to winter. It is time to take the bicycle out for a tour and analyze what nature has in store for me to capture. 🙂
The start of this week had absolutely gorgeous weather. For the past few weeks I was relentlessly blowing leaves to earn my keep. Lacey dog needed a flea bath because all that fun in the blowing leaves had a price for her to pay. For a mid November the air generally has been warm, some grasses maintained a vibrant green and bright yellow dandelions continued to bloom by the roadside. Mostly the colorful leaves have departed and bare naked trees stand waiting for winters first cover of heavy snowfall. At times boredom sank in while making a daily round by foot in the chilled rain but the bright red berries dotting the shoreline brought a smile .
Red Berries at Lakeside
The Trail by Cranberry Lake
At the local Cranberry Lake dock two husky men attempted to fish. One man wore a navy blue T-shirt with bold white lettering, advertising a trucking company. Luckily they both found employment at a trucking company, one has five children and told me that he was grateful to be working. “Years ago the economy was not that bad when I started my family but today there are mounting economic concerns,” he explained. His friend just grinned and nodded while continuing to spin a fishing line into the lake water. He diligently worked the line to gain a strategic position that would bring in a good catch. Hopefully on this rainy day the forlorn trucker will be able to provide enough fresh fish to feed his entire hungry family. I picked up my walking pace and decided to head over to the entrance of the Sussex Branch trail.
The Sussex Branch Trail
Surprisingly my eyes could now search through the woods without any distraction of autumns plentiful foliage. A squirrel scurried up a fallen log and thrust its body onto a large tree. This year there were tons of acorns and walnuts for animals to have a huge feast. Undoubtedly, their tree lined nests must be overloaded with enough supplied nuts to last well into another season!
With heavy rainfall comes miniature seas of water and a huge black puddle crossed my path. Scaling the muddy side and looming over this newly created body of water with a duck umbrella in hand to take a few reflective photos was not an easy task. The rain drops created rippling ringlets for floating leaves to be tossed around like miniature boats. Fairies came to my mind as groups of colorful leaves could still be found against the wet wooded landscape. It was a contemplative day and I pondered about how one could edit most captures to create an imaginary land waiting to be discovered.
One of a series titled ‘Things I Find On the Side Of the Road’
Photo Capture: ‘Politics’
Yes! Even along the side of the road one can find oodles of politics! Every community has its favorites. At this time of year instead of planting trees, signs are planted up and down the roadsides. Diligently a volunteer travels by car and a passenger runs in and out of it very quickly because there are allot of signs to post. I do believe this activity happens early morning or late at night due to daytime traffic. Getting ahead of the competition is clearly the main goal and roadside exposure positioning.
And, this is how a political sign ended up on the side of the road! Sussex County, New Jersey!