John & Anne Wiley

2011/06/28

Memories

Our sweet niece the history teacher is visiting, and last night she asked about the highlights of our MeriTimes Adventure. It was a little surprising how many moments came to mind. Maybe like trying to describe an especially good meal or artwork: we tend to savor the whole rather than think about the parts.

Returning to where I left off reviewing our photo collection from the trip as she catches up on sleep this morning, memories rushed back from that Pittsburgh to MD flight. Like the discovery that Gettysburg is a town. You’d think ending in “burg” would have been a clue, but somehow photos from the Civil War gave me the impression of a solitary house amid miles of open fields. It would make sense that tourism would have created a town since then, but the beautiful Gettysburg College was used by both sides during the war.

8165 Gettysburg College

8165 Gettysburg College

Our takeoff that day offered only hazy views of Pittsburgh and weather en route was forecast to be unsettled, so we had decided not to fly over the city for a photo better than this one.

8159 Pittsburgh Memories

8159 Pittsburgh Memories

At this distance all our memories of the fun we’d had there with Molly’s relatives, seemed to blend into one warm feeling in the soft air. Along the way we wove a circuitous path among clouds and small storms, with hazy air making it seem we were more part of the sky than of the green fields and small towns below.

0212 Cloud Dance

0212 Cloud Dance

Approaching the Martin State Airport we were directed by ATC to circle over this small dam while some military jets landed ahead of us. It was fun to imagine the story of the dam and then watch the formation landing in the hazy distance.

8176 MD Dam

8176 MD Dam

Reducing power to descend, the song of Tripp’s engine changed to a warm hum. Anne took this snap of the airport, and the mingling of air with water softened by misty distance evokes memories of being there as our story mingled with the generations of U.S. history and ancestral times beyond.

0215 Invitation to Memories

0215 Invitation to Memories

Advertisements

2011/06/26

Slightly Somber Solstice

Filed under: Happiness,Has Photos,Inner World,People,Random — John @ 00:59

One of our fav SB events is the annual Summer Solstice parade. It’s fun for all ages, starting with chalk art on the street while the patient crowd waits for the festivities to arrive.

1416 Small World

1416 Small World

Unlike most people who stake out a prime spot somewhere along the route, we like to counter-walk it starting near the park. A drawback is that by the time it reaches us some of the people pushing heavy levity (all floats are human-powered) up State St. are starting to wear themselves out.

1443 No Horsepower

1443 No Horsepower

Brightly-costumed kids in some of the floats had wilted a little too.

1446 Faded Fun

1446 Faded Fun

Some observers were perhaps more removed from it all, watching from their balconies.

1453 Academic Interest

1453 Academic Interest

Anne seemed quite interested in the Tarzan float, perhaps because his physique reminds her of me.

1458 For Jane

1458 For Jane

Mostly we love the kids, both in the parade and on the sidelines, because it’s all so fanciful.

1459 Radiation Cautionary Tale

1459 Radiation Cautionary Tale

Each year there’s a “theme” and it can be fun figuring out what a particular parade float or performer is trying to express. Of course, some are familiar characters like this airplane circling Kong when he danced with the Empire State as part of the ensemble above.

1461 Red Baron & Kong

1461 Red Baron & Kong

At the end of the parade is a giant inflated abstract shape, often with a dancer inside, that leads everyone from their seats along the parade in a musical dancing procession up to the massive park. The audience becomes the parade.

1490 People's Parade

1490 People's Parade

It’s all play, dance, music, colors, shapes and performance. An exuberant feast of art with everyone an artist. At the 3-block park complex there are several excellent musical performances with floats parked around the perimeter where people can interact more closely with them and any performers who haven’t yet mingled into the festive crowd milling around the booths, crafts, displays and food/beverage/snack offerings.

1501 Greeting Her Fans

1501 Greeting Her Fans

At the most distant of the three parks people rest on the lawn at the pond where fish, turtles and ducks entertain the kids at a more relaxed pace.

1507 Slowing Down

1507 Slowing Down

So did this year’s parade have a slight somber note, or is it that we’re a little tired still from our trip?

2011/06/25

Urban Airspaces

Our flight from Springfield, IL to Pittsburgh, PA took us over a series of cities after our relatively non-urban areas in the West. Soon after takeoff we passed near the Illinois State Fair, and it was easy to imagine all the activity there during the fair.

7244 Illinois Fairgrounds

7244 Illinois Fairgrounds

The large sprawl of Indianapolis surprised us for some reason. I’d never thought about it beyond the car race, so it was interesting to see the nearby city center. For example, like many big cities it’s grown up next to a big river.

7256 Indianapolis

7256 Indianapolis

The airport of course caught our attention too. Seems to be both a major airline terminal and an even bigger line of FedEx terminals.

0159 Indianapolis Airport

0159 Indianapolis Airport

Taking off from Dayton we got a distant glimpse of downtown, and were again surprised that it’s bigger than we’d imagined. So many places to return and spend more time…

7264 Dayton

7264 Dayton

Columbus was also larger than imagined with downtown nestled right in a bend of the river.

7267 Columbus

7267 Columbus

Weather was so fuzzy by the time we reached Pittsburgh that we didn’t take any pix. It’s just that the airport we chose was at the edge of town and on our last flight there we flew right over the city in glorious weather (have a look). Looking back at these pix from our MeriTimes Adventure flying from Santa Barbara to Newfoundland, it’s almost overwhelming at times to see little dim slices of the moving panorama we traversed in sweet Tripp.

2011/06/22

Perspectives

I’d never heard of noodling until we chanced upon a recent broadcast of the docu “Okie Noodling” on PBS. So as we climbed out of Oklahoma City on our grand MeriTimes Adventure, my perspective on this scene was changed.

7102 Noodling Notion

7102 Noodling Notion

In addition to the beauty and intrigue of this scene, my perspective now included imagining people splashing around in that water. I doubt the prospect of fish dinner would move me to stick my arm into a dark underwater lair and then into the mouth of a giant catfish. I’m quite content to imagine that from half a mile above. Speaking of imagination…

7115 Space Warp

7115 Space Warp

I imagine a passageway through time/space when looking at this pic of sandy riverbed next to a small park. On the ground it’s just a playground and ball fields but from this perspective it can create quite a different effect. I don’t recall having shared this ground perspective of Tripp’s wing at our Arkansas stop.

7128 Crystal Decatur, IL

7128 Crystal Decatur, AR

Great place for a fly-in, with riverside park right adjacent to the excellent paved runway. Hills across the water with ancient rock walls in places to add a timeless quality. Rows of hangars housing fascinating mementos of the airport and area’s history. Before passing the famous arch, we got a new perspective of St. Louis that seems to go back to the previous century.

7176 St. Louis Stroll

7176 St. Louis Stroll

I can imagine 1900s couples strolling between those bandstands hearing ragtime and Sousa on a sunny afternoon. Last from this flight is a thoughtful perspective on Springfield, IL. I can see the cheering crowd there for Obama’s speech, and Abe stumping there before him. If you click to see the largest version of this pic, you can make out the old red-domed capitol building at the left inside a circular sidewalk.

7208 Downtown Springfield, IL

7208 Downtown Springfield, IL

Not long after this pic we were in a hotel admiring both the old and new capitol buildings from yet another perspective.

2011/06/19

Out of ABQ

Another rerun of our trip, this time leaving Albuquerque. Our tour of the Sandia Mountains on the way out yielded a great look at this high dome that hints at a giant squat figure.

7026 Dome Gnome

7026 Dome Gnome

Tucumcari on Route 66 has an interesting mesa to go with the interesting stories I found on the town’s wiki (click the name at the start of this sentence).

7038 Tucumcari

7038 Tucumcari

Rivers in that area are both rare and unusual, carving splashes of color & life across the vast desert.

7040 Colors & Life

7040 Colors & Life

300 miles further along Route 66 a sometimes creek near the little town of Shamrock, TX gave us another view of water for a thirsty land.

7061 Not Ireland

7061 Not Ireland

The wiki for this town tells about the Irish immigrant who named it, and I like looking at this arid scene imagining how far from the emerald isle Mr. Nickel felt. What moves people to yearn for their childhood and the green hills of home? Even though we enjoyed the varieties of human and geological terrain we saw on this trip, we still felt an occasional pull from our hometown.

Next Page »

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: