NOW, But For How Long?

Self likes the way the last Daily Post Photo Challenge Prompt for 2015 (NOW) made her focus on pictures that weren’t necessarily well-composed, that weren’t what she normally thinks of as “good” but which unmistakably captured/evoked a place or person or thing that exists in the moment:

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Venice, From a Vaporetto, November 2015: One day, this city will sink into the sea.

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And now, a street: Florence, November 2015

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On the Punta Vecchio in Florence: November 2015

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

Gathering 2: Different Kinds

The WordPress Photo Challenge this week is GATHERINGS.

First: a gathering of tables glimpsed on New York’s High Line, a few days ago.

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Outdoor Seating at Terroir, a Restaurant on the High Line

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An Outdoor Café in San Marco Square, Venice: early November, 2015

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The plaza in front of the Santa Maria dei Fiori in Florence: early November, 2015

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Gathering: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

What is the holiday season if not a chance to get together with family and friends to over-indulge in great conversation, food, and maybe even a libation or two?

  • Prompt for GATHERING, The Daily Post Photo Challenge for the week before Christmas

Self’s first post on this theme shows:

(1) a crowd waiting to get in to the Santa Maria del Fiori in Florence:

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WAAAAH! These are the crowds in NOVEMBER? Don’t even want to imagine what they’re like in the spring and summer!

2) an outdoor yoga class in St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin:

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St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin, July 2015

3) pelicans and seagulls, Pillar Point Harbor, Half Moon Bay, CA

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Fall, Half Moon Bay, CA

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

“Woman, Do Not Weep!”

Florence, Palazzo Vecchio, early November 2015: Self visiting the city for the first time with her niece, Irene, stumbles on a conference to honor the 10th anniversary of the death of Msgr. Luigi Giussani (1922 – 2005):

Woman, do not weep! Do not weep, because I did not make you for death, but for life. I put you in the world and placed you in the company of people.

There is nothing that can block the certainty of a destiny that is mysterious and good!

The Year 2015: Very Stream-of-Consciousness

First Margarita Donnelly Prize for Prose. Mary Gaitskill. New York, New York. Carnegie Hall and Dearest Mum (Last night, front row seat, Trio Solisti. They killed Brahms. Absolutely killed it. Three standing ovations. From a New York audience. No joke). Florence & Venice with Niece. “Crackers” in Crab Orchard Review. Fan Fiction (self’s WIP: about Peeta as a prostitute!!!) garners more hits. London-Ireland-York (the last for the first time). Central Park walks. Middlemarch (swoon). Writers Group meet-ups. Twitter Hashtag Games & Folklore Thursday. Victorian Steampunk and Shadowhunters. Believing in dragons. Stay tuned.

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Carnegie Center’s Weill Hall, Before the Trio Solisti Concert Last Night

Eye Spy 3: Gorgeous Orbs, Intense Gazes

# 1: Artur, whose acquaintance self made in Florence, early November:

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Self encountered Artur on the loggia in front of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, early November.

# 2: Joan Crawford’s eyes. Self-explanatory, really:

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The Intensity of Her Gaze!

# 3: Friend Annabelle Udo-O’Malley has the most gorgeous eyes. Took this pic in San Francisco, last year:

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Annabelle! It’s been so long! Time for more dress shopping!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Transition 4: Twilight

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The Punta Vecchio, Florence: November 2015

 

Transition: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is TRANSITION.

Some examples from The Daily Post:

  • a photo of your little one’s first steps
  • a sunset scene, as your world passes from day to night
  • waves kissing a shoreline, the space between land and sea

Self took this picture during a stopover at the Zurich airport, early this month:

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Sunset: Zurich International Airport, early November

And here’s a picture self took from a cab as it crossed a bridge over the Arno River in Florence:

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Crossing the Arno River, early November

The leaves in Florence were turning, when self and her niece were there in early November:

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Park, Florence: Early November

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

Directions for the Journey to the Meaning of Reality

While self was wandering around Florence, early this month, she stumbled into the Palazzo Vecchio. Milling about in the lobby were participants in a conference to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the death of Monsignor Luigi Giussani. It was the first she’d ever heard of this man who, one of the conference staff told self, was a much admired teacher and writer.

Self walked away with a brochure of his writings, and wasted no time opening the brochure. She was very struck by this statement:

LIVE REALITY INTENSELY

Then, she read a discourse on the meaning of the word “Thing”:

I would be amazed by the stupefying repercussion of a presence which is expressed in current language by the word “thing.” Things! “Thing,” which is a concrete and, if you please, banal presence which I do not myself make, which I find. A presence which imposes itself upon me. At this moment, if I am attentive, that is, if I am mature, then I cannot deny that the greatest and most profound evidence is that I do not make myself, I am not making myself. I do not give myself being, or the reality which I am. I am “given.” This is the moment of maturity when I discover myself to be dependent on something else.

Self has a story in the New Orleans Review called — THING.

The consonance of her Thing with Monsignor Giussani’s discourse on the word Thing is super-mindblowing! It’s as if self’s frail tendrils of story, and this always-churning imagination of hers, has transported her across the ocean to Italy, simply so that she can receive a brochure at the Palazzo Vecchio where a teacher and philosopher tries to explain the meaning of Thing. Of Thing-ness.

Self’s story is about humanoids in the post-apocalyptic Earth. Where no one looks human anymore. Hence the use of the generic to describe that which-is-neither-here-nor-there. That which is thing.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

 

Still More Trios! Florence

More from the trip to Florence, more on this week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge, TRIO.

While self and her niece were in Florence, niece booked us on a tour to the surrounding towns of Siena, San Gimidgiano, and Pisa.

The church (or Duomo, the word Italians use to refer to a cathedral) at Siena was beautiful. The front of the church has three entrances:

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The Duomo at Siena: So beautiful!

And here’s another museum, whose name completely escapes self, but anyhoo: It’s in Florence, which has 62 museums.

Each wall facing a central courtyard has three arches:

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A museum. Somewhere in Florence.

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Three figures above a door to one of the smaller chapels next to Santa Maria del Fiore

Deepest apologies for being so lame about specific museums and what-not. Self is in New York City, and she still hasn’t fully unpacked from her last trip (to San Francisco). Will fill in the names when she gets a breather!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

 

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