Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Theme Thursday: Kitchen: Mine Is Closet-Like


Photo Taken By E, January 28, 2009.
My closet-like kitchen is great if one is interested in economy of motion and efficiency. If, however, you are a kitchen diva or metromale that needs every gadget under the sun with which to concoct cuisines, there isn't room. That fact alone leaves me having to get creative in how much I cook and store...
My cats consider the kitchen their domain, particularly the window sill, top of the refridgerator and the inside of a very warm dryer just as the clothing or linens are removed...

Monday, January 26, 2009

Meditative Scene

Photo taken by E, September, 2008.


This was taken the same day I found and photographed the seahorse in my previous post. Water seems to be a recurring theme in my life as I have always lived geographically close to it. I enjoy its many forms, whether white-capped in a roiling storm, choppy on a cloudy day or serene and almost meditative, as it is here.

As I noted in comments to a reader when she inquired how I was able to recollect the decorative doorway I had photographed during a particularly grueling physical therapy session, scenes such as this often come to mind if I can get into the meditative state that helps me focus on something other than the pain that ensues from therapy as well as sometimes simply living.

Apart from that, I also enjoy finding things that tantalize the eye as well as the mind and spirit, and while I make no claims about being a good photographer, it is interesting to experiment. Another intriquing element of any visual medium is the viewer; what I see and how I see it may not be what another notices at all.

Until Next Time...

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Seahorse Art


Photo taken by E, the owner of this Blog
September, 2008.
As we were passing by a storefront, my friend and I spotted this unique and colorful sea horse. I regret that I did not get a better shot of this one.
Click to enlarge and get a better look at the colors and texture...
Did you know that the male seahorse gets pregnant and gives birth?
For more fascinating facts, visit http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/seahorse/
This is the website for a PBS program devoted to seahorses that originally aired in 1997.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Decorative Doorways



As I worked the Nautilus machines at physical therapy today, this photo came to mind. I find the symbolism of doors and entry ways interesting to contemplate.
What do you think???
Photo taken by E, September, 2008.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

It Is Far Too Chilly For This Today...


It is far too chilly here to sail today. I should point out that I don't actually sail or own a boat, but I do love the water and this was too pretty to let pass. This picture was taken in September, 2008 by E, the owner of this Blog.
Because my previous entries have been wordy, and much heavier in terms of subject matter, I thought I might lighten things a bit with this...
I wish you all a wonderful day.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Pausing For History...

As the images of dignitaries flooded the television screen, I found myself reflecting on a moment in history and pondering what the country might be like four years from now.

Would President Obama, a man of apparent eloquence and forethought, have succeeded in restoring our teetering economy? Will our health care system be any less expensive and dysfunctional and will everyone have access to the care they need? Will our relations with other countries have improved significantly? Will we have forged a stronger peace in the Middle East or have sought imperative changes here at home to put an end to the deregulation and greed responsible for reckless decisions and practices on the part of our financial sector? What of the war in Iraq?

These and many other concerns now rest firmly upon the shoulders of our newly inaugurated president, his advisors and our senators and congressional representatives. The president and his colleagues, like the rest of the United States, have been given a wake-up call.

While Mr. Obama has promised change in the face of economic crises at home, a crumbling infrastucture, rising debt and ongoing military conflict, his inauguration speech also emphasized individual responsibility, sacrifice and hard work. It will be interesting to see how the next few months unfold and whether these changes manifest with time.

I find it quite telling that personal and communal ethics were not directly mentioned. Nor has anyone yet asked why we, as a nation, have allowed ourselves to create and hang on to a way of life that is proving unsustainable. I hope that there is a vision afoot that includes more than just keeping our consumerism and the debt that ensues from that afloat.

In the interim, I will bookmark President Obama's website and sign up for e-mails from the White House regarding his policies, new legislation, and agenda. He is the first president to utilize the Internet in this manner. I encourage all who read this to do the same. Perhaps we will have a greater voice in national affairs.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Happy Birthday, Reverend King

Photo taken from http://www.civilrightspictures.com/ on January 18, 2009, by the owner of this blog. This photo is used for illustrative purposes only. It will not be sold or used for profit in any way. The website from which this photo was taken allows this photo to be used free of charge for educational purposes on personal and educational websites and in personal e-mails.
The writing on this blog is the work of its owner and should not be used without permission.
While I hate using Web photos and would prefer to use my own, I was a small child when Reverend King was assassinated. I remember nightly images of this man on both the Spanish and English television channels available where we lived. While much of the English news was censored, the Spanish newscasts often featured information on his activities.
The first recollection I have of the word "pacifist" is in connection with Martin Luther King, Jr, and protests for both Civil Rights and an end to the war in Vietnam. Residing in a community dominated by both military and government employees, the questions asked of my parents and teachers were often met with cautious responses.
"What is a pacifist?," was one of the first. The initial response, "Why are you asking?" then led to a series of even more provocative inquiries on my part that culminated in the simplistic reply, "A pacifist is someone who does not believe in violence."
When I pointed out that killing people only resulted in more people getting killed and asked why both sides could not just stop and talk with each other, my exasperated mother conceded the point that talking was indeed a better solution than shooting or dropping bombs.
Her frustration reached new heights when I observed that it was wrong to put Mr. King in jail just for standing up for people who could not stand up for themselves, then wondering aloud why everyone did not have the same rights, despite differences in their houses, the color of their skin or where they were from. She knew I was right, but offered no satisfactory answers as to why the rest of the world did not see things my way.
I knew by age nine that discrimination, cruelty and ignorance existed, for I had experienced them in my school and neighborhood, and so had my mother. I was growing up female in a world full of sexism, disabled in a school in which well-meaning teachers and neighbors, and even some doctors, were often ignorant.
Despite having the things many of my neighbors and their children had, I was also growing up in a Third World Nation, in which many neighborhoods overflowed with poverty. I also grew up around people from throughout the Caribbean, Central and South America as well as the United States and Mexico, and grew to love many of the wonderful foods, customs and cultural experiences that sprang from this exposure.
That this environment, coupled with personal experiences, also gave me a first-hand look at the differences in the way people are perceived and treated is no surprise. Indeed, the desire for fairness, equity and dignity for everyone , which I also later learned from Judaism, and first glimpsed through the eyes of a Baptist civil rights activist and minister on an old black and white television screen, remain at my core as a woman today.
As a citizen, I often find myself at odds with the activities and views of elected officials and wonder what we are coming to as a nation and as a member of a much larger and diverse planet. I am sure that forty years ago, Reverend King hoped fervently that through his and the actions of others, rampant prejudice would end, and that rights and human dignity would be respected.
Many people, including Reverend King, were forced to give their lives in pursuit of a better world for all. While much has changed, as evidenced by the historical election of Barack Obama, we dare not forget the past nor can we assume that the battle against racism, sexism, homophobia, ageism and other forms of prejudice is over. There is still much we can do personally and politically. That said, tomorrow's commemoration of the birthday, achievements and sacrifices made by Martin Luther King, Jr provides individuals and communities the opportunity to reflect upon where they are, what they as part of society have accomplished, and what they want to see in the future.
Thank You, Reverend King.

An Eye For Detail...


Photo taken by E September, 2008.
This was taken on the same outing and while I could not fit the entire building into the picture, you can perhaps glimpse a bit of its architectural detail...
I am fascinated by design elements and so many of the more recent buildings I see lack the details spotted here.
What do you think?

Saturday, January 17, 2009

And, Speaking of Birds...

Photo taken by me, September, 2008, in a town and county over the bridge from my own.
This was my first attempt at using my digital camera. I do not know the artist or anything about the exhibit as this was taken from a friend's car window as we were passing by...
Rather eye-catching, I thought.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Thankful For Small Things

My day was busily spent dashing to various appointments, including the physical therapist, for my damaged and irreplaceable knee. Most days, I am grateful for the ability to take the pain in stride, whether from the Nautilus machines or just moving about. Today, however, the knee really gave me a run for my money.

While I was able to complete the required regime, and enjoy reclining with an ice pack afterward, unknown to me several hundred unfortunate people were making a very scary landing in New York's Hudson River.

A noticeable pall hung over those in the lobby area, as I exited the therapy room. People stood, eyes fixed and mouths agape at the digital images streaming from a nearby television. It wasn't until I reached the car, however, and my ride turned up the radio that details of the a commercial airliner's descent into the cold depths fully emerged.

At last hearing, one hundred and fifty people and their flight crew, bound for Charlotte, North Carolina, collided with a flock of geese, which caused dual engine failure. The pilots and crew executed a water landing after only three minutes in the air, and all aboard were able to get out alive, averting possible tragedy.

Events such as this make me realize how much there is to lose when a life is at stake and how often I, like most people, assume that tomorrow is guaranteed when, in fact, the opposite is true. Life can and does change on a dime. In this case, with the meeting of geese and plane, two disparate things intersecting in the sky.

I am grateful not to have been on that plane and happy that everyone survived. I'll take a sore knee and a warm cat over a plane crash any day of the week.

Until next time...

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Finally---A First Posting

This first posting has been delayed by months and misgivings. In response to the proddings of well-meaning friends and colleagues, I've finally found some time to post.
One of my blogger friends suggested that since I love to write, (I was a paid writer and author for several years), I might like blogging. My own blog, these friends believe, also allows the far-flung in my life the opportunity to see what I am up to electronically.
As a private person, readers will note that my location and actual identity have been obscured and I ask that this be respected. I can tell you that I am a mid-life woman with a lot on her mind, trying to make and keep a sane life at a crazed time when many have been hit with crises. Hence, the title, A Life In Progress.
Like most of those I know, I am looking for work, living with some challenges and sharing my life with three chronically ill feline companions, one of which is pictured in my profile.
Thanks for your interest and patience as I build this blog. Life is always an adventure. Welcome to mine.