zephyr illusions photo by donna October 1992. The view atop Chasseral, Jura Mountains looking across Switzerland to The Alps on the horizon. Fog, intensely thick, rising from Lac Bienne and stretching its fingers high onto the Lignières-Plateau de Diesse after wholly filling the valley below the plateau.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Time Melts Away

photo by donna - PineGroveFurnanceStatePark, CumberlandCounty, Pennsylvania 2010
Laying the book on the table beside her, the silver-haired woman turns her gaze to the serene view through the window.
Time seems to melt away...

A young girl, long blonde hair streaming behind her like golden ribbons in the glow of the morning sun, runs through the meadow.  
Her heels seem to catch the warm summer breeze as she nimbly leaps over the small brook that meanders its way from the mountain headwaters forming a natural and informal border between the meadow and the wild blueberry patch at the edge of the forest.
Reaching the blueberry patch, she slows to a walk and then stops to catch her breath for a moment before deftly plucking a handful of plump ripe blueberries from the low bushes.  The girl adjusts the old, but sturdy, knapsack that is slung over her shoulders and begins popping blueberries into her mouth savoring each berry one by one as she continues on the familiar path leading into the sanctuary of the forest.
Entering the coolness of the forest, beams of warm sunlight stream down through the canopy of long reaching branches of tall pin oak and eastern white pines.  The girl's senses are filled with the aroma of dried pine needles fallen in seasons past. 
She removes her worn canvas sneakers baring the soles of her feet to the comforting sensation of the fallen pine needles which softly cover the forest floor.  
Stowing her shoes in her knapsack, she sets out upstream on the path following the contours of the mountain stream. She sets into an easy pace listening to the melodious music of the mountain stream as it dances and swirls over and around the sandstone pebbles and cobbles rounded by the waters of uncounted years.
In the near distance, a woodpecker strikes an echoing staccato tattoo.
She arrives to her favorite spot; a natural undercut in the stream bed has created a small waterfall and she steps into the eddy at the base of the falls.  The water is cold but feels delightfully refreshing.  
Stepping back up onto the stream's shallow bank, she is careful not to disturb the beautiful lacy moss covering the forest floor like a delicate carpet.
Shaking the knapsack from her shoulders, she plops down on the ground leaning back against a large tree and sighs in delight as she takes the book from her knapsack...
Time melts away...

...As she turns her gaze away from the window, a smile warms the age-worn face of the woman. Slowly, she reaches to pin back a renegade tendril of her long silver hair that has somehow managed to escape the thick braid loosely tied with a ribbon of gold.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Waggoners Gap, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania

View of my childhood stomping grounds.  My childhood homestead is located almost directly below the rock outcropping on the right near the crest of North Mountain (about the 10 second mark, but difficult to see in this low-quality video ) in the woods at the base of the mountain.  There were only 3 other homesteads, back then.  Now there are a dozen or so.  Other than more homes, I am happy to see that things still look much the same... other than the dirt road along the mountain is now paved and has a name (it was nameless when I was a child) and the the 'main road' from where I recorded this video is much busier with traffic.
At the age of 11 years old, my friend and I with her dog hiked up to the outcropping, know as 'The Bare Spot' in child speak, with a picnic lunch packed in a knapsack.  It was quite the feat for young legs and no path to follow.  It took us about 3 hours, if my memory serves me correctly.  The sandstone boulders are HUGE and the view inspiring.  It was that experience which showed me that the world is "out there" waiting to be discovered and explored.

Friday, August 23, 2013

The NSA Files

It's more than a damned shame that it is necessary for American citizens to have to turn to international news media to find major news stories that affect every American citizen concerning the National Security Agency (NSA), The Patriot Act and how the USA Government is trampling all over the shreds of the USA Constitution and Rights to Privacy.
But, since the U.S. media is bought and paid for by the Powers That Be and is no longer investigating and reporting real news, events and facts to the American public any discussion is moot. ... and muted.
Make some time in your busy schedules to read the news stories being reported by Glenn Greenwald for The Guardian. This is reality, no longer conspiracy theories. I'd be frightened if I wasn't so damned angry. 
The NSA Files 

Why We Fight

"Now this conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence -- economic, political, even spiritual -- is felt in every city, every Statehouse, every office of the Federal government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet, we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources, and livelihood are all involved. So is the very structure of our society."
President (5-Star General) Dwight D. Eisenhower,Farewell Address delivered 17 January 1961
Farewell Address - President Dwight D. Eisenhower