Far Beyond Normandy

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Lately I’ve been thinking about our trip to France a couple of years ago.  We walked down the Normandy Beach on an eerily still Fall day.  When you are there, you are consumed with thoughts of WWII and what those young men must have been thinking while being dropped off to perform an unimaginable task.  What is most remarkable, is that it is so very peaceful there now.  

Normandy Beach

Normandy Beach

While wandering around Paris, we happened upon a very large building with a glass roof, The Grand Palais.  I was told that tourists seldom get to see inside of this building, but there we were with the giant side doors standing wide open, and I was allowed to take a couple of photos.  It was immense and beautiful.

Surprise Opening

Surprise Opening

Around every corner was a gorgeous church and often the pipe organ would be playing.  Music is the most amazing universal language.  I wish that everyone around the world would be touched by the spirit of lovely music.  I don’t think that all people seek peace in their lives.  I am so sad about the events that occurred in Paris this past week.

One Peaceful Universal Language

One Peaceful Universal Language

With that being said, I think the world could use a little more things to celebrate and be light-hearted about.  You can find this happy frog in the pond at the Schramsberg Caves near Calistoga.  We went there with some friends a bit ago and had a remarkably memorable day.

More Bubbles Please

More Bubbles Please

It’s on days like that, when I realize that my little life, in my little piece of California, is quite lovely.  I hope that, wherever you are, your life is peaceful and lovely too.

Stony Creek?????

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I don’t know what it is about Stony Creek, Connecticut; it seems to have fully pulled me in with its beauty.  I am so tempted to return, this summer, to take photographs of the quarry where my grandmother enjoyed viewing the water lilies as a child.  In her 1954 travelogue, there was mention of going for a walk to the quarry, but there were no photos of the lilies.  I think her travels may have been too early in the season to view them.  I’ve heard that it needs to be hot and humid for the lilies to be in full bloom.  Certainly in California, that is not the case.    

 

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Returning to the CT shoreline is completely compelling to me.  Being there when the humidity is high, is not nearly as attractive.  Is there anyone who could let me know the true story behind the water lilies and when they bloom on the east coast?

 

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It is times like these that I think, I never would have gone to France to get this shot next to Monet’s Garden if it hadn’t been for my sister-in-law, dumpster diving about twenty-eight years ago.  Her second grade teacher had passed away.  The teacher had never married and left her belongings to nieces and nephews who obviously had no regard for her things.  They had a dumpster delivered in front of her house and emptied her mementoes into it.  We happened to drive by and see that someone was going through those things in the dumpster, and we recognized her!  There was this lovely painting of a dome, that I brought home to reframe.  I did not recognize where it was, until I was at Union Square, in San Francisco, and I saw it again in a photograph.  I asked the artist where the photo was taken and he told me it was Sacre Coeur.  I needed to go to Paris, France.

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Here it is.  It was a rainy day but the views were still spectacular.  I also acquired a lovely lithograph on that dumpster day. I don’t know where that location is either, but when I figure it out; I’ll be going there too.  Below is the lily pond, at Stony Creek, in the fall.  I was hoping to find the lilies in bloom.  Wrong time of the year for me as well.  All I could see were spectacular fall colors and hundreds of lily pads fading away.

 

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Here’s where you can help me.  I know how many views I get on this site.  If you “like” this post this week, that will be a vote for me to return during the humidity to photograph the lilies.  If over half of the viewers like it, I’ll be sharing those photos with you by September.  There is something inside of me that feels like Grandma’s travelogue of photos would then be complete, as I would add the color photo to all her black and whites.  Should I or shouldn’t I go?

I must add one more thought; my sister-in-law has an adventuresome spirit.  I think sometimes it has rubbed off on me as well.  I know that there are many places on this planet that I probably would not have gone to, had it not been for her wanderlust.  So I want to say, “thank you for that, it has opened my eyes to our beautiful world.”