Sunday, February 27, 2011

Time To Move

Nancy and I have talked time and time again about where we are going to move next. (Don't panic yet... it won't happen for quite a while yet.)

Our short list includes: Nova Scotia, Seattle (etc), coastal Maine, or Rochester.

Yeah, the last one is kind of funny, right?

Well, here's what we're finding... we really like spending time in Rochester. We have great friends in the greater Rochester area. It is a fun city with an amazing arts community. Lots of great neighborhoods. Most of all, there's a chance we could buy a house near a REALLY big lake, which while not quite the same as living by the sea, comes pretty darned close. Winters are much more severe (look it up if you don't believe me... Rochester's weather is wicked!)...and Nancy and I want MORE winter, not less.

Why is Rochester on my mind? Today I had to zip up there for visit with my new Wound Ostomy Care Nurse, part of the Rochester Colon and Rectal Surgery practice. Now... by and large... I wouldn't say going to the doctor is fun. Truth be told, I get scared every time I walk into a doctor's office. My BP goes up, I get claustrophobic, my anxiety starts spinning... and sometimes it gets the better of me. Last week, I met with a surgeon who thinks he can fix all the various aspects of my abdomen that have been torn asunder.... in ONE surgery. Not two or three like everyone else has said would be necessary.

On my drive back from Rochester, the light was phenomenal. The snow glowed! Despite my desire to skedaddle home to Nancy as fast as the van could carry me, I had to stop. The light doesn't wait. And it never falls the on the same shadow twice.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

TGHA - Last Home Game for the season

There is something so amazing watching Aurora and her teammates hit the ice at Lynah Rink. Normally we are there to watch the Cornell University Men or Women's hockey teams. It is completely different seeing our girls out there. No loud pep band. No huge crowds. And still, it is an amazing feat to watch. The girls played their hearts out. Now they face the FLAG tourney this weekend, then sectionals the following weekend. If all goes well, they'll be heading to the States competition three weeks from now.

As always, prints and digital files are available for family and friends.
Feel free to email me for a password for the zenfolio site where you can order prints directly.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Some folks get roses for Valentine's Day. Others ask for chocolates.
Some couples want dinner at their favorite spot, with candlelight and table linens.

I want to take Nancy dancing.

As someone who has always felt like a penguin abandoned on the dance floor, this is tough. My body doesn't move the way it used to. Parts of me are hard to work around. Heck, even finding clothes that I feel comfortable in, is a real feat. Nothing off the rack fits around this protruding hernia and ostomy. Shirt tails don't tuck in quite the way they used to... if at all.

When I woke up from the coma, I had been in Spain (I think... might have been Italy)... celebrating getting married. The party on the lawn was over, the food was being put away, the last of the kids carried off to bed. We had danced throughout the night. Now it was quieting down. A slow song still played, each note hung from the tree branches like paper lanterns. The glow was almost gone, not quite.

And Nancy and I kept dancing. Slowly, but still dancing. So tired and so happy. I would have kept going till dawn.

So when I woke up, and saw those scared but relieved eyes looking down at me, I was so glad I would have the chance to finally dance that dance. For Valentine's Day, I am taking Nancy dancing. I may still be a penguin lost on the dance floor, but at least I will be out there, dancing.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Winter, oh Winter

These images were taken at Der Rosenmeister Nursery in Ithaca NY, on a "warm" winter day, after it had snowed the day before. Leon Ginenthal had posted some images of his garden in winter, back at the beginning of the month. Check out his latest blog posts to hear more about cold climate rose growing.

At this point in the deepest part of Winter, it is hard to imagine that Spring is coming. When the weather turns bitter, the wind picks up and tosses hard biting snow down your collar... it's hard to believe that these frozen buds will soon swell into blooms.

Only the most tenacious hold on through the winter. The rest are set free on the wild howling winds that sweep the land.

This winter has given us everything... snow, sleet, wind, ice, thunder, rain, chunks, frosting, and sparkles on the lake as steam froze.... all in the span of a few weeks.

This lonely bench calls me out. I remember this setting when it was lush and redolent with roses warmed in the sun. The bees were so loud as to create a wall of white noise. And yet, somehow, it was tranquil.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Heading Into The Weekend

Last weekend was so much fun. Hockey games for the kid, great homemade food each day, and best of all, live music with our friends. As much as I loved rock concerts when I was a teenager, I think kitchen parties are where I see my future. I love the idea of folks, sitting around the table, sharing songs, laughing and telling stories. All of that, topped off with coffee, beer and tea, mingling with wicked desserts.... could there be a better way to spend time with friends?

Nancy is working on her callouses. After many years of not-playing... Nancy is practicing every night. As a result, her fingers and left arm are taking a beating. After dinner dishes have been cleared and I find myself ready to wind down, Nancy will pull out her guitar and the music just pours out. I feel like the luckiest guy in the world.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Our House Is A Very Fine House

Carol, Gordon and Nancy - playing at our house this weekend

Saturday, February 5, 2011

TGHA - 14U Shooting Stars - Girl's Hockey

This is the best bunch of girls out there. Watching them play hockey every weekend is a treat. Today they played against the Jefferson Jaguars and held them 2-2. Definitely a very successful game!

I have been asked repeatedly throughout the year to photograph the girls on the ice. Unfortunately my recovery from my surgical debacle has made that difficult. Even standing still on the ice is tough. Two years ago I would stand on the bench behind the girls and shoot while they skated. No glass between me and them. Two years later, they toss the pucks much higher, much MUCH faster and harder, and that combines to make it wicked unsafe for me to be out on the bench without a helmet. Never mind the potential damage to my camera and lenses.

So I am limited to time when the pucks aren't flying.... before and after the games.

Watching the girls get ready to hit the ice is always exciting. Seeing them as they come off the ice can be hit or miss. After some games they come off the ice with smiles and laughter, and other days they are down in the mouth and scowling. Today was a good game.

Watch that goalie go!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Renata and Stahl's show - First Friday exhibition at Gimme Coffee

Yesterday was First Friday in Ithaca and fifteen galleries and exhibition spaces were open to the public. This month our friends Stahl and Renata put together a fabulous installation at the Gimme Coffee on MLK Street in Ithaca. I think the combination of claywork and sculpture works amazingly well.

One of the unexpected surprises of the night, was running into our friends Renate and Lee Ginenthal.

Renata and Lola

Trying to photograph these sculptures on the walls of Gimme was very difficult. With the folks milling about, or worse, shooting over their heads as they sat and sipped wicked good coffee... it made setting up lights downright impossible. Luckily, Aurora was willing to play VAL for the evening. I love the way the drama of this piece comes to life in this image.

It was cold last night. Not "brutal-I-can't-go-outside-my-face-will-freeze-off" kind of cold, but still definitely February in Ithaca COLD. Renata brought over two hot chocolates for me and Aurora (my grip and VAL - voice activated lightstand - for the evening). Certainly made us all warm and happy inside.

So did you go to First Friday? Which openings did you attend? What surprised you? I know that Rochester has a First Friday event, but I don't know what other communities offer. We've been to the Hungerford Building for First Friday in Rochester, and that was amazing. You needed a guide to get you from one open studio to the next, but despite the labyrinthine passageways, the caliber of artwork was phenomenal. Definitely need to make our way out to First Fridays more often.