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Sunday, June 26, 2016

what a week ...

At some point there was the 'blood moon' or 'red moon' or whatever it was called. A big-a$$ moon that like all previous big-a$$ moons was clear and visible just about anywhere other than here. But I tried.

And then it was a wild week of weather than went from bad to horrific. We suffered two basement floods at work which made life challenging. But all that got put into perspective on Thursday when torrential downpours devastated Southern West Virginia and outlying areas of Charleston where I work.

So far 24 people have lost their lives to this freak act of nature that has been categorized as a 1 in 1,000 year flood. Countless others lost everything but ... their home, their livelihood, their neighbors and hometown. I appreciate the gut-wrenching emotion as my hometown was devastated by flooding in 1985. Roads that had been there forever, gone. Homes picked up and moved downstream, even the direction of the river changed forever. Businesses in a small town that could never recover to come back, and the beginning of the end of a small town that had been a vibrant hub for the region, now a shadow of its old self. I know that some of the larger towns affected this week will come back. The beautiful and majestic Greenbrier will come back. But in one afternoon/evening, many lives were changed that will never come back. Lost lives, families, homes, businesses - so many in a region of the state that was already economically challenged. 
If you are inclined to donate go to the below link:

#staystrongWV #prayersforWV

Thursday, June 16, 2016

insta share ...

I have been on a Paris instagram kick and could easily post an image from that leg of our trip for the rest of the year. But what about the brief stop in Switzerland, what about those gorgeous mountains and alpine villages? Growing up surrounded by mountains, I am not easily in awe of them
(motion.sick.ness - every.time - ugh!). 
 But the Swiss Alps - 
now those are mountains.
 (and sadly, yes it came with motion sickness - tots UGH!)

part of my pictures from this day came from me sitting with my eyes closed
only to pick up the camera and blindly snap a picture in response to my husband's
"ohhh, look at that!"

Monday, June 13, 2016

no denying it ...

The streets of Paris had me from the moment we got out of the train station.  I was enraptured with them: their simplicity, their complexity, their personality and could have effortlessly found adequate subject to photograph at every turn, 
(which much to the test of my husband's patience, I did with some frequency.) 

My travel photography often boils down to pictures from the window or snapped as we are making our way to the next destination.  I'd like to think they support the philosophy that the journey as much as the destination is what life is all about.

Mind you, the endless construction around London could be distracting, I didn't let it stop me.

I also enjoyed the sas and quirkiness found among the Venice streets.

As I leaf through the vast number of images from our trip, I am more convinced to explore my draw to street photography.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Love must rule the day ...

[love locks - Paris, France] 

 My heart and thoughts are with the victim, families, and friends from the Orlando tragedy.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

grow up ...

When I grow up I would like to be a street and travel photographer.

I have always had a passion for people watching and enjoy it even more with a camera. 
It takes bravado and finesse. 
Courtesy and respect. 

It is best done without family around, especially the ones that say "mom, don't do that", "Nicki, don't take pictures of people" and the ever popular "creeper".

But this lady was totally okay with me taking her picture.

This one, well she was oblivious - she was concentrating on the rat with wings
and I wasn't nearly as close as the picture would imply.

And these people, they define the location 
and honestly I don't think they even noticed me.

when I grow up ...

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Paris in April ...

After totally blowing off doing a 'French for Dummies' refresher on bare-bone use of the language, my husband and I started second-guessing our decision to visit Paris in April. London had been so much fun with few language or navigation issues, we immediately regretted not booking a longer stay. Then, 2 days before we were to arrive in Paris, we got notice that our hotel reservations made 11 months earlier had been cancelled.  Any slither of optimism about that leg of our trip was living on borrowed time.  Despite being assured that they would rebook us in a 'sister' hotel, we disembarked the train to a herd of impressively armed police randomingly pulling people aside to inquire about their travel. One glance at each other, a collective sigh said it all, 
"what were we thinking?". 
 The 'sister' hotel turned out to be nice, our room had a view of the top of the Eiffel Tower, and the maitre'd could not have been nicer (or patient - he may or may not have had to open the tricky lock to our room on several occasions). 
It didn't take much time before we began to wonder if perhaps we had cut our time in Paris a little short. 
And talk about a photographers dream; 
I could easily still be muddling around the streets taking pictures.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

lemonade from lemons...

when you snap a shot, 
find a pole in the middle of the singular image with the boat, 
 you paint.