Inside 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

The San Mateo County Historical Museum is located in Courthouse Square, downtown Redwood City.

San Mateo County Historical Museum, Courthouse Square, Redwood City

San Mateo County Historical Museum, Courthouse Square, Redwood City

This gallery was just off the main lobby of the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park.

This gallery was just off the main lobby of the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park.

The Inside of Self's Helleborus "Courage."

The Inside of Self’s Helleborus “Courage.” For some reason, the plant didn’t bloom at all this year.  The picture above was taken last year.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Dreaming of Gardens

Last Sunday’s San Francisco Chronicle Datebook had several pieces on Golden Gate Park and the people who garden in it. Self was absolutely fascinated. The Park has been part of her best memories about living in the Bay Area.

These are what Golden Gate Park has meant to her, over the years: serenity, beauty, stillness, rest, happiness.

Today, self spent a lot of time in her garden.  She planted a Spanish lavender (even though it is getting harder and harder for her to dig holes:  every single bush in the garden, she has planted by herself.  There will come a time when she won’t be able to do it anymore.  This makes her feel sad.)

"Regal Josephine" Clematis

“Regal Josephine” Clematis:  Self bought it only six months ago.

A Private Garden (Self discovered this when she followed some people walking into an office building, and saw the garden through a back door.  The door had a key situated in the lock:  As dear blog readers well know, when self encounters a key in a lock, she ALWAYS opens it)

A Private Garden in Venice (Self discovered this when she followed some people walking into an office building, and saw the garden through a back door. The door had a key situated in the lock: As dear blog readers well know, when self encounters a key in a lock, she ALWAYS opens it)

The Grounds of Hawthornden, southern Scotland

The Grounds of Hawthornden, southern Scotland

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

 

 

The Hue of You 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is about color:  “The Hue of You.”  The idea is to “share a photograph with a prominent color (or assortment of colors) that reveals more about you.  It could be a symbolic, meaningful shade; a color that expresses how you currently feel; or a combination of colors that excites you and tells a visual story.”

Color is about emotions, too.  Since all the ones in this set of photographs are bright, self knows she is feeling pretty good right now.

In the first picture, self was attracted to the pop of magenta among the welter of fliers on this kiosk on the Stanford campus.

Stanford Kiosk, this evening: Walked around after attending a Valerie Miner reading

Stanford Kiosk, this evening: Walked around after attending a Valerie Miner reading

When self returned from Bacolod, the garden was dry.  It was a sad place.  Bella’s water and food dish were still on the deck, as were all her pillows.  Then, suddenly, two days ago, the alstroemeria began to bloom.

Backyard:  Alstroemeria "Third Harmonic"

Backyard: Alstroemeria “Third Harmonic”

Self had never seen grass so green as the grass she saw on the campus of Pampanga Agricultural College, which she visited at the end of September.

The Main Quadrangle of Pampanga Agricultural College

The Main Quadrangle of Pampanga Agricultural College

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

Saturation: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

The prompt:

“This week, show us a photo of whatever you like, but make sure it’s saturated.  It can be black and white, a single color, a few hues, or a complete rainbow riot; just make sure it’s rich and powerful.”

Here are self’s three shots of saturated color!

Wall Shrine in Calle Something-or-other (Near the Frari Church)

Wall Shrine in Calle Something-or-other in Venice (Near the Frari Church)

In our first home, in Sausalito Terrace, Fremont, there were bushes of this plant lining the driveway.

In our first home, in Sausalito Terrace, Fremont, there were bushes of this plant lining the driveway.

Armchair in self's room in Hawthornden, June 2012

Armchair in self’s room in Hawthornden, June 2012

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Focus 2

It is SO much fun to participate in the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenges!

This week’s theme is FOCUS:  “Get out there and take a picture demonstrating the concept of focus . . . tinker with the manual settings, use the autofocus feature, or play around with an app.”

In response to which, self would like to say:  Easier said than done!

But here’s another try:

Flower Carpet "Red" on self's front porch

Flower Carpet “Red” on self’s front porch

Memories of another August:  Nerja or Nijar, southern Spain, August 1996

Memories of another August: Nerja or Nijar, southern Spain, August 1996

Steps by the castle at Hawthornden:  June 2012

Steps by the castle at Hawthornden: June 2012

Did she get it right?  Who knows?

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Today, While Waiting For Son To Get Off Work

Today self had the car.  She and son have been trading off.  He usually bikes to his summer job in Menlo Park, but today he had to make pasta for an office potluck.  Self must say:  she was very impressed at how efficiently he made the dish: using fresh basil and pine-nuts and two boxes of rotini!

Self went to the city to meet Joel T and his friend from New York for lunch at the Yerba Buena Center.  It was a gorgeous day in San Francisco.  It almost made up for the confusion of construction.  She also found out from Joel that the SFMOMA was closed and would remain closed for the next three years.  Say whaaaat?

Afterwards, while waiting in the parking lot of son’s office (He had a meeting), she perused a back issue of New Letters (Vol. 79 No. 1).  In it were poems by Carolyn Wright (“Neck Broken, Resourceful Cyclist Walks to Emergency Room”) and Albert Goldbarth.  Below, an excerpt from the Goldbarth poem, “Some Etymology”:

The original definition of doom was
– neutrality — “one’s destiny.” What dark faith
in our futures do we have, that now
it’s “catastrophic death”; or that the neutral fate
extends itself into fatal?

And in order not to leave dear blog reader with such gloomy thoughts, here are pictures she took today of her blooming clematis “Nelly Moser”:

Currently blooming in the backyard:  clematis "Nelly Moser"

Currently blooming in the backyard: clematis “Nelly Moser”

Here's what's left when the flower petals have fallen off.

Here’s what’s left when the flower petals have fallen off.

The flower from a little farther away

The flower from a little farther away

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

The Garden: One Shot, Two Ways 5

These are the last weeks of summer.

Self’s Iceberg Rose has been blooming, almost non-stop, for months.

Her Iceberg Rose: Petals Soft as Pillows

Iceberg Rose: Petals Soft as Pillows

Ready for Her Close-up:  Iceberg Rose 2

Ready for Her Close-up: Iceberg Rose 2

Come to think of it, self thinks the two shots are almost identical.  The sun might have moved in a second.  Is that possible?

In the backyard, Bella lies sleeping.  She is almost completely hidden in the long grass next to the magnolia tree.  Do dogs dream?  If they do, what do they dream about?  Bones?

Son leaves late tonight for Puerto Rico, where Jennie waits.  Self hopes he has enjoyed these last few months at home, though it is hard for a young man to be surrounded by childish things.

This evening is the last concert in Stafford Park.

Alas!

Garden in August (Been So Long)

Self just realized, looking back over her summer postings, that it’s been a while since she posted pictures of flowers.  The summer’s been so hectic.

First, there was the Fourth of July.

Then the CalShakes picnic, self’s birthday and son’s birthday.

Then, learning how to tweet.

Then, the third season of “The Killing.”

Then, Bella’s various farts.

Then visits to various museums.

There was Bindlestiff’s STORIES HIGH THIRTEEN:  SoMa Edition (Four Stars!)

And yesterday’s epic trip to place an order at Lech Go in Saint Francis Square.

But today –  Hallelujah! — things have calmed down a bit.

So here are some pictures from self’s garden:

Naked Ladies. Self forgets the scientific name.

Naked Ladies. Self forgets the scientific name.

Without fail, every August, the plants she refers to as “Naked Ladies” (She keeps wanting to call them “Bare Naked Ladies,” but that wouldn’t be a flower, that would be a singing group) appear.  Self is always a little sad when she sees them, as it means summer will soon be over.

A clematis she bought in early spring (from Regan's Nursery in Fremont) has one big, white bloom!

A clematis she bought in early spring (from Regan’s Nursery in Fremont) has one big, white bloom!

Gamboling Lizards!

Gamboling Lizards!

These metal lizards are made in Haiti.  Self bought them from the gift shop of Baltimore’s Visionary Art Museum (a brainchild of James Rouse, grandfather of the actor Edward Norton).  At one time, they hung next to the clematis henryi — but the clematis and everything on either side collapsed when the neighbor decided to replace the fence.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Curves 3

Calla Lilly, Side Yard

Calla Lilly, Side Yard

These callas have appeared all over self’s yard.  None of them were planted by her.

And here are more garden curves!

On a beautiful spring day . . . when the sun is shining . . .

On a beautiful spring day . . . when the sun is shining . . .

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Fleeting 2

Against a Backyard Fence:  Climbing Don Juan

Against a Backyard Fence: Climbing Don Juan

Self’s climbing Don Juan rose blooms only once a year, around April.  During the summer (now), it shrivels away to nearly bare twigs, because of where self planted it:  it gets intense afternoon heat from noon to seven p.m.  Self planted several things in front of it to help absorb the glare, but those other things remain slender saplings and barely cast any shadow.  Live and learn.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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