Monday, July 31, 2017

Another "On a Dime"

It is easy to forget how fragile life can be when we are busy meeting the goals of the day, checking off the items on the list, or crawling into the life of some fictional character through a book, TV show or movie.  Yes, we may get interrupted by a bee sting, but unless and until we get a nasty allergic reaction, we tend to be strong and impervious and move on.

Hubby was working on our boat one afternoon a few days ago.  We had had some problems with the pump and I think he may have been checking that.  I was upstairs working on photos, which I do a lot.  He called me on his cell:

"You might want to come down and see this.  I have already called it in."

I grabbed the nearest camera and it had a telephoto, which was both a good thing and a bad thing.  I was unable to capture the true vastness of the plume of smoke, but I was able over the time to zoom in on the volunteers from our fire department that finally arrived, although sometimes a blurry zoom due to no tripod.  Hubby said he had heard a small explosion/pop as he was stepping out of our boat and turned to see what I saw below and that the emergency operator, who took his call a minute later, said he was the second person to call it in!

Neighbors up a few docks on our side of the river had seen two young people heading to the boat in flames and screamed at them to back off which they did.  There were small explosions from various containers going off while we waited for fire rescue.  Boats have fuel compartments and docks sometimes store fuel, so fires like this can be dangerously explosive.  People do not usually smoke in boat yards.

The fire was just a dock's width (about 5 feet) from the boat in the foreground.  I am still wondering if the hull on that boat was bent by the heat.

It took the firemen almost 15 minutes to arrive because as those of you who live on coastlines know, the roads are never straight but usually narrow and our fire station is only a couple of miles away.  They had to haul that heavy hose from some distance I am guessing.

Once they got the water on the bow and into the middle, the smoke began to immediately change to white and the heavy water brought it down onto the river.

We were surprised that the dock had not been so compromised that firemen could walk out and attack the fire from the side and rear.  You can see the platform on the stern is still burning.  Yep, they are brave...or oblivious.

They had pretty much put out the fire by the time the rescue boat arrived with its water pump.  No one was hurt, and we did not know the owners, but someone had said they appeared to be out of town.  This type of boat can cost from 25K to 50K, so I am hoping they were insured!  The very next day the hull was hauled away to protect future navigation.

Life changes on a dime even if you are not paying attention.

Friday, July 28, 2017

People of New York, My Version

My photoshopping of some of the candids I took of folks on the streets of New York City.

The blonde lady seemed to be providing instruction to the two other women while they sat on a park bench.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Miscellaneous Fun Stuff

I could have spent longer in New York City because much of our time was programmed with little left for serendipity.  I did not even get a good street crowd scene when we were rushing to see "Wicked" and had to cut through the long lines of fans waiting in line to get their tickets for "Hello Dolly."  It seems that Bette Midler's understudy had been carrying the lead role while Midler was vacationing in Hawaii for two weeks. (Hawaii vs. New York City...wrap your mind around that for a bit.)  Anyway, she was obviously back because the street was so full even cars could not go by!

The Schubert Organization is one of the oldest theater companies in New York and has two corner theaters above on "Schubert Alley."  The brothers were very good businessmen and "by the mid-twenties, the Shuberts owned, operated, managed or booked over 1,000 houses across the United States."  I think their successful history might make a good musical.  One of the brothers had his home and offices in that top floor above.

Notice all the gum in the photo above!!

As a lover of books, I was happy to see that our first hotel had a small library in the lobby.  My granddaughter, who is not really an avid reader, checked it out.  We were staying at The New Yorker which has an Art Deco style.  As some of my readers know I love the Art Deco with its curves and homage to nature.

Above was taken from our hotel room window.  Just a hint of the architecture.

I also stumbled across the New York City Public Library and had to check it out.  New York City has reduced the crime and homelessness substantially in Mid-Town and I was glad to find the library much like any other city library.

I keep hoping by exposing her to books that she will want to read more!

We changed hotels the last two days to use some points for another brand hotel and ate breakfast in their "Bistro" which also had shelves of books above our heads.  Notice anything unusual?

Any good book person would have caught it before even getting that early cup of caffeine.  It annoyed my anal-retentive personality to no end.  One of the books above is upside down!  As a friend pointed out, they could also have used some book stops to keep the books from leaning.

It was a rich trip.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

We Took a Bite of the Apple.

Those of us who are fortunate enough to travel know that there is always some kind of time warp upon re-entry to our homes. I spent a week with my granddaughter and husband on a special 10th birthday celebration in New York City.  We had planned this a year in advance and participated in a workshop that introduced us to Broadway and the surrounding area.  This was like visiting another planet and we were a little dazed upon re-entry to the rural country.

I have been to New York City a few times before, but I think this was finally the time that solidified for me the layout of Mid-Town south to Washington Square Park.  The workshop had us moving throughout the theater district as well as the other tourist areas.  We walked many blocks some days but also took the subway sometimes and relied on cabs at the end of the week. 

I will not fill this post with the 800+ photos that I took.   But it was fun!

Taken from the top of the Empire State Building.
It was an active time and it was invigorating and exhausting to be on a daily schedule again in our lives.  Grandchildren and Grandparents were lectured and taught by dancers and actors on Broadway.  There were 13 children, only two of them boys, between the ages of 9 and 12.

For most, it was a first time trip to the Big Apple.

We went behind the stage of the Art Deco New Amsterdam Theater which was currently playing Alladin.  The history of this theater was amazing in that it was almost completely torn down before being saved.  Those decorative balconies in the top photo had been cut away when it was a movie house and all the beautiful decorations were painted black.  It was abandoned for a long time and then purchased without the buyers seeing the inside which had become a place for rats, mice, mold, etc.  It is a truly beautifully restored landmark.  We saw Alladin at this theater and Wicked at another theater as well as the show Blue Man Group.  The actor who has played Jafar (for over 20 years both as a voice for the animated version and acting on stage) was interviewed during the workshop.

The professional dancers also got us up on our feet to practice using space with our bodies and to practice trading leads with our grandchild.

The children rehearsed singing and dancing to one of the songs from Aladdin and I am waiting for the video to share with Mom and Dad.  

We used a few days of free time to do traditional tourist stuff.

There, only 0.012% of my photos.  Pretty good, huh?

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Keeping a Card Up Your Sleeve On a Rainy Day

Since I have led a sheltered life (meaning the last time I played poker I was 12 and played with my Dad), I have not a clue about the rules or etiquette or strategy for Poker.  Today my husband was playing five card stud (?) with his 12-year-old grandson.  I was asked about a Full House, and I said that was what we had on the 4th of July.

They both threw a sofa pillow at me.  When we got to talking about a Royal Flush, I assumed that had something to do with Princess Diana, and they told me to leave the room.  Just as well, because they were playing for quarters and I don't have any since the quarters you see in the photo below are what I took out of the jar in the laundry room where I put the loose change that I collect from the dryer and which I donated to the two of them.  I then took the same amount off of hubby's dresser and they were happy.

Anyway, they had a good time learning math and strategy on such a pummeling rainy day.  (We got 2.75 inches in 12 hours, although as I write this the sun is now out.)

Grandson's first hand was not good and not bad.  They seemed to be pretty even back and forth during the afternoon of card playing.  It was fun listening to them jibe and bluster each other as they got bolder and then more discouraged.

At least we got him away from videos on the I-phone!

Monday, July 03, 2017

Peace and Pause, You Will Not Find That Here.

My calendar is crowded until the end of July. Grandchildren coming to visit for a few days, then taking one child to a "camp" up in NYC, and then returning with her for three days, and then dropping her off midweek, and then finishing the month off with a doctor's appointment, a dentist appointment, the fireplace cleaning service and two trips to the Children's Garden to work and harvest. I know that my readers do not care, nor should you care.  Just making an excuse as to why my posts may be little more than outlines and not well-thought-out or meaningful; prior posts were, weren't they?  

I would like to write more deeply about my thoughts/experiences at this time in my life...but right now I am extremely busy living it.  I am thankful for the busyness, because when my days get empty, as all of our days do, I wonder about my life and its meaning and how fast it is moving.  Now I have no time for that.

Hoping I can squeeze in some time to read from my blog list as many of you give me peace and pause.