. . . a day makes! A getaway to the southern Maine coast meant starting at its most famous landmark, Nubble Lighthouse. It was a classic fall day--crisp (OK, chilly) and beautiful. Quiet seas. Dreamy skies, though storm clouds were gathering in the west. In the late afternoon sun, the lighthouse seemed serene--and delightfully quaint. Next day: warmer, but huge winds, waves and driving rain. Intrepid as we are, we ventured out anyway. Nubble was completely different: dark, foreboding, under leaden skies. The waves were wild, and we were soaked within minutes.
The new photo challenge is words + light. The idea is to take two snaps of roughly the same thing, varying the light. Our Acadia plus Belfast getaway had us on the move, so I never got to play with the light, but I found some pretty photogenic words. We happened onto a sidewalk chalk art event in Belfast. My favorite: And sometimes simplest is best:
The family challenge has been issued: at least two photos a week: both of the same thing from an assigned category, with one variable between the two. So this week it's "food and drink" and the variable is focal length. Lacking a brilliant setting (fine restaurant? steamy kitchen? exotic market?), I'm making do with what's at hand. It's harder than I thought, in terms of both topic and variable. But I'm back in the game, however slowly, after a shamefully long hiatus. Not part of the challenge, but a whole lot of fun: Schoodic Peninsula was amazing a week ago. Fabulous light, especially as the day drew to a close; great surf; yummy lobster roll; good company.
Here in the frozen northland, we may appreciate spring more than anybody. We notice every daffodil and offer deep respect and thanks to the tiniest bud. Even dandelions brighten our days, more than ever now when we've been our houses for so long. The University's ornamental garden is a favorite place to watch spring unfold. There's nothing like a magnolia. This baby star magnolia looks surprisingly happy, given its anything-but-lush location. Tulips have their own strange beauty when they're starting to die.
We thought spring would never happen, and there's still a cold wind mostly days. But all the signs are there: daffs, tulips, the trees starting to leaf out. Out at City Forest early in the morning, there were some happy signs of renewal. We spotted the fernlets first. Skunk cabbage may be my all-time favorite sign of spring. It's showy, captures the light beautifully, and has those wonderful reproductive things whose names I have to look up every year: a spadix enclosing a spathe (like a jack-in-the-pulpit). It can generate its own heat to melt the ice and snow. It can lift and lower itself in the ground. And it has a Latin name to reckon with: symplocarpus foetidus. Something is getting ready to leaf out; I don't know what: Are these alder catkins? Whatever they are, they looked fabulous in the morning sun. Enough so that you might forget that's a landfill in the background. Oh well. The bobolinks like all that grass!
I'm failing at this challenge! The weather hasn't been conducive to outdoor adventures. I'm tired of looking at my house, so no photographic inspirations there. Spring may be coming still, so I WILL get my butt out doing something useful. Meanwhile, some placeholders, There were baby horsetails at Essex Woods, and a strange growth in a tree. Last year at this time, there was beautiful spring weather and places we could go. I should have been more appreciative.