Winter Clings on–to life in NH

My granddaughter looks back down the street toward her house halfway down its length while we wait for her bus on a wintery Monday morning. The next morning I drove her down to the same spot because the temperature was 7 degrees (by my computer). Oh dear, I just looked at the forecast for tomorrow, my travel day. Snow and rain mix on the east coast. Hope I can get outa here.

This is the view over the backyard and into the neighborhood beyond. Gotta love the geometry of all those orderly angles and the monochromatic colors. As I’ve walked up and down the street to the bus stop I’ve seen and heard my favorite birds, ravens. Naturally they look particularly sleek in all this black and white order and their cry reminds me of my chosen home back in the less organized world of Taos. Yes, there’s a lot of contrast between the two places and it’s not an urban vs. rural or small town kind of difference. It’s a cultural difference, and for Taos culture means multi-culture. Folks here in New Hampshire seem to be more in step with one another, at least on the surface.

This was taken from a 2nd story window. As much as anything it illustrates the intertwining of trees and houses and again, the simple geometry used in the design of the homes. I liked the old-fashioned look of the crocheted window treatment and the way it frames the photo, accentuating the orderly repeating patterns in the houses. As you can see I was not wandering around much looking for great scenery but using what was at hand.

This might turn out to be the most interesting of the beach photos I took a week ago on the one “nice” afternoon that drew us to the beach. It’s kind of an optical illusion that my granddaughter is standing in water. The tide must have just recently gone out exposing a large swath of sand, so wet it looks like water. Wish I’d had the new polarizing filter I got for my birthday when I took this.

Weather permitting my passage through the air I’ll be back on New Mexico soil tomorrow night. Back to my cozy small home with no garbage disposal, microwave or TV. Back to work on my many projects. Back to blogging about life in the chosen land, Taos.

Winter Ways in NH

It’s still winter here in New Hampshire, so we’re inside the house looking out for the most part. The general landscape of this affluent town is dominated by fields and yards covered in smooth icings of white contrasting with stands of dark limbed trees. My drive to my granddaughter’s school is like a trip through a toy-like world of narrow curving roads through trees dotting open space between story-book box shaped  houses and barns.

From the science viewpoint of observing the driveway in front of my daughter’s home I can report the temperatures were below freezing last night but the trend is toward daytime melt that is shrinking the snow and ice there. I love the mysterious crystal shapes in ice and felt I should be quick to photograph it while I could.

This is the ocean view at the end the street where my family lives. Took it this morning on my way back from the school drive. It’s a scene of melting snow. This morning I saw what must have been a cardinal. It was a totally red and very handsome bird. Later I saw a self-satisfied robin who seemed confident that spring was on the way.

Trees are everywhere and I have an impulse to get a tree guide and walk around identifying them. I have never been to the east coast and I can only imagine the amazing beauty of the fall colors here.

Where there was a major fork in the road of my life history, (I started in the middle of the US, Oklahoma) I chose west over east and have never looked back. First it was California, the Bay Area, then branching out to different places within that state. For some reason, still a mystery to me, I have spent long stretches of time in the affluent and beautiful town of Sun Valley, Idaho. In between there were short spurts into life in Oregon and Arizona, and now New Mexico–all places clearly western.

This beach is only a couple of blocks away from my granddaughter’s house. We stopped by on our way home after school yesterday. Once we got to the beach she seemed in no hurry to get home. The temperatures were in the low 40s. No wind. Not too bad. I gave my new dslr camera a workout.

I am still switching back and forth between the two cameras. I keep the small digital handy in my purse and still tend to plan my outings with the larger camera, even though I chose to purchase a dslr that is on the smaller, lighter end of possibilities there. I’ll be in NH another 6 days so may blog again from here. It’s certainly photogenic.

Sweet in Sedona

On a sunny warm day #1 in my visit to Sedona I hiked up a fairly easy trail with two friends. Everything seemed exotic and beautiful. At the end of the trail was this tantalizing view. It was exciting to see from the light behind the column that the base was free-standing.

This is the bark of an Alligator Juniper tree. This I do remember. I was very taken by these trees which were fairly numerous along the same trail. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one before. They grew pretty tall by Juniper standards and seemed very happy in that environment.

This was taken at a park I do remember the name of–Red Rock Crossing. It’s a very special place but sadly is difficult to access unless you go by the book and drive in and pay a steep $9 fee (per car). We walked in for $2 per person, but finding a place to park is tricky (don’t ask). A friend and I visited here twice out of my total five days in Sedona.

This red rock face, with its distinctive chimneys, overlooks the creek (Oak Creek) at the base (seen in the previous photo). This offers drama as well as shelter to the park. I managed to get in a hike, or at least an interesting wild-ish walk on each of the 5 days there. My friend and I would meet up at a local cafe–Java Love. It seemed to be THE local’s hang out, as over the course of my days I often saw the same faces there. The staff seemed to know the names of the customers and everyone acted like they were very much at home. It was easy to feel included in this ambiance and I would highly recommend the place to anyone visiting Sedona. Wifi of course.

Part of Red Rock Crossing park is Buddha Beach. A favorite pastime here is building rock structures and I had to try my hand as well. I believe anything goes but the favorite style seems to be stacking as high as possible. There are some stretches of flat red rock next to the water and my friend and I chose to lie in the sun a while and listen to the sounds of the water. This general location is one of the many vortex spots in and around Sedona and is a feminine (yin) one. We let it have its way with us. Sweet.