I’ve been distancing myself from this blog since 2018. I think it is time to share some of the places that I have been. The photos are unique to my experiences, and at a time that can be confining, I hope to take you outdoors to the scenic beauty that is all around us.
In November of 2018 we went on a short road trip around Phoenix, Sedona, and Tucson, Arizona. The desert has never been a place that I long to be. I have a lot of friends who love the desert but I prefer the ocean. With that being said, there is a sense of quiet beauty that exists there. It is a peaceful place that lacks color yet is filled with it too. The calm that I found there is why I am sharing these photos with you. This is a time when we may not feel very peaceful but we know that peacefulness is all around us, we just need to remind ourselves to look for it. I urge you to take a look at your own photos to help refresh your memories of those experiences you’ve had that filled you with joy and calm. This period of isolation will pass and perhaps be one of those memories you choose not to hold on to. Spend this time going in-search of your peace, your calm, and your beauty.
Yesterday I headed for the shore. It was over 100 degrees in the valley and I couldn’t get the thought of how refreshing the coast might be, out of my mind. My sister-in-law was staying with us so I asked her if she had ever had lunch at The Cliff House in San Francisco. Her answer was, “I don’t think so.” and off we went.
View from Cliff House
Coastal Wild Flowers
Pelican Flight from Golden Gate
When we arrived it was foggy, the towers of the Golden Gate Bridge were not visible, and it was 60 degrees. We sat at a window seat, had a delightful lunch, and watched the fog move about the coast line and the Pacific Ocean. It was a beautiful sight. We lingered as long as we could and then took a, barely sunny, walk out to the Sutro Baths. They are long gone but the Cliff House readily reveals the history of the place which makes it easy to imagine just what it must have been like to visit here, many years ago. So, as this heat wave lingers, remember that people on the coast are living a charmed life in the summer fog. Maybe you should go and visit the ocean too.
There are times when I wonder why I am so drawn to taking photos when I travel to various places. I suppose it’s so I’ll keep those images with me in a tangible way. I find that I keep those images and experiences with me anyway. When I look at these photos from Hawaii,
Tiny Sand Crabs
it seems that I can still hear the pounding surf, see the sea spray on my sunglasses, and feel the gritty sand between my toes. These images bring back the temperature of the day, the wind that completely messed up my hair, and the delight I found in seeing the crab’s shadow rush across the sand. The mountains were quiet, filled with hanging clouds that spat occasional raindrops at us. My mind is filled with these memories but these photos bring back all those other pieces and feelings that made taking the photos so important to me at that moment in time on that particular day.
I take photos because I love all the places I have been and I want to keep those memories with me always.
A couple of weeks ago we were in Maine and took a walk along one of the prettiest shorelines that I have ever seen. I’m quite used to walking along the West Coast but I found the East Coast walk simply charming.
Begin The Marginal Way
Along The Way
We couldn’t have asked for a better day to take the paved one mile walk (The Marginal Way) from Ogunquit to Perkins Cove. I don’t think these photos do it justice but I wanted to share them anyway. Should you ever travel to Maine, you really must look this place up and take the walk. I finished our walk wishing that the path was twice as long. I suppose we could have walked it twice but why spoil a splendid moment? Is there any place that you would like to return to? I am very sure that I will return to The Marginal Way with the hope that I can spend a lot more time, next time I am there.
You’re going to think this is a little crazy but almost everyday I awake and think, “I have a good life.” Maybe it’s because images like this one run through my mind. This is what I love about taking photos, once you have them in front of you, they tend to stay in your mind. People used to write poetry to help those images stay with them. We simply point and shoot and there it is, like an instant magical memory.
Quiet Sunrise in Hawaii
I think while shooting photographs, you are constantly looking to capture the most beauty out of a subject that you can. I look at the photo below and can remember the sound that was made as the surge of the waves would push up through the hole.
Then there is this beast. I only got to spend a short time with this subject but this image stays with me for some reason. I wish that I had more time to spend there but we were on a bus tour that gave us enough time to disembark, click, click, click and off we would go to the next quick stop.
Whirlwind Tour in Scotland
This next image takes me back to walks to the waters edge in England, good friends, and happy times. I know it’s often gray there but I found it to be a delightful place and now I can go back and pull up these photos and return to my wonderful memories any time I wish to.
Gray Day in Southern England
So look at my memories, and remember your own. Perhaps we all have, “a very good life.”
With the recent large waves that have been crashing into the California Coast and Hawaii, I’ve been reflecting on the stillness that can also be found on the coast. One of my favorite places is Half Moon Bay during very low tide and sunset. There is a magical presence that I find there. It revives my soul and calms my spirit.
Copper Colored Bluffs at Fitzgerald Marine Reserve
I’ve also been thinking about the old saying, “home is where the heart is.” I always thought that saying was referring to a structure but I think I was wrong. Anywhere can be home as long as you find peace in that place. Even fond memories can be home if they lighten your spirit, like the childhood memory of warm sand moving in-between your toes. I find that I need to keep these pleasant thoughts close to me in this chaotic world that we find ourselves living in.
Tidepools at Sunset
I want to share one other sunset that wants to linger in my mind. It was beautiful and the company devine. The whole trip was such a wonderful time.
Waves are everywhere, pounding and changing the landscape but in my mind it will always look like this until I return again. It was almost a bronze color and then in an instant it returned to grayish white. This is one of the places my heart finds it’s home. I never want to let go of those lovely memories. I hope this stirs up some lovely memories that you want to hold on to also.
Isn’t it funny how certain things will bring back a memory instantly? Some friends went to Carmel recently and dropped by a book with lovely photos of the cottages in it. You’d think that I would have flashed to walking through the village. We did just that, not so long ago. What flashed through my mind was a day in 2005 that I went to the Carmel beach by myself. It was a gorgeous day and the climate was perfect, not too hot, not too cold, not very windy, yet it was windy enough to watch the sea spray lift off the waves.
First View From the Beach
Surfing the Big Waves
2005 My Favorite Day at the Carmel Beach
It was one of those days that you have to silently sit in the sand and watch the power of the ocean. It was a day that I will never forget. The power of this memory is so strong, it’s a bit like the way a song will instantly take you back in time. I have gone to the beach many times since 2005 but it has never been this magnificent.
Last post I promised to take you to a place that I remembered as a child, Point Lobos State Park. I remembered the white sands of the beach, the windiness of the day, and the treacherous hike down to the beautiful beach.
First Glimpse of Sandy Cove
I don’t remember there being all these stairs (left side of photo) descending to the beach, and quite possibly there weren’t many. I remember traversing down on switchbacks along the cliffs. It was terrifying as a child. It seems like the violence of storms has washed them out many times and passage to Sandy Cove is no longer a trip that any person can make.
Old Stairs to the Cove
This white egret has found the perfect spot to look for a good meal. Nothing should bother it while it patiently waits for lunch. They are extremely patient birds.
Egret on the Kelp and Water Looking for Lunch
I have tried a few times to reach this destination in the past, but have been unsuccessful in finding it. I am so glad that a ranger offered us help in finding this teal blue and white memory of mine. I only had black and white photos and now I can see the beautiful colors of my memories. It is an amazing place. If ever in Carmel, it’s just a short drive.
I went on vacation last week with my family. We went to Santa Cruz, California. I grew up there and wanted the family to experience the place that I had grown-up in.
East Cliff Drive Thunderous Waves
We rented a house on the beach and found that the waves were constant and loud. They were also beautiful, the weather had some sort of fog everyday, and it was cool all the time.
Sunset Over Santa Cruz
I’d slip out during dinner and capture the sun as it set. I do so miss those sea-spray sunsets. They are the best that I have ever seen.
Tide Pool Color
We took a trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium and saw little orange sea anemone’s behind glass. I had never seen one in the open tide pools until the next day. There it was, the only one. The color reminds me of the sunsets. We had a great time. Sharing tide pools with grandkids is a blast! I’m so glad we shared this time together. Next blog will let you in on a place that I had longed to go back to and see since I was about eight……It is beautiful too, but in a completely different way.