Saturday, January 17, 2015

Kisatchie Splendors

She Walks in Beauty
I had just 30 minutes to spare when I arrived in the vicinity of Camp Hardtner this morning for a Congregational Vitality Institute day. So I turned west on FS 120, just across from the southern entrance to Camp Hardtner, drove about a mile and parked at the end of this old logging road.

Last summer I set out to find an area of the Kisatchie that was reasonably close to home, an area along Hwy 165 where I could easily stop en route to and from Alexandria and Camp Hardtner. This was my third visit and I love the place more each time.

This morning, after parking my car and getting out, my phone rang and it was an important call. I leaned against the back of my CRV facing the road, finished the phone call, then got my camera off the front seat and began walking down this road. I had gone no more than a few feet when a young deer--probably last year's fawn, based on size--bolted from a thick patch to my left.

I was still adjusting the camera, setting shutter speed and depth of field, checking white balance, deciding which lens to use, etc. But, you know, it didn't matter. I just stood there and watched the deer, all rimmed in morning light, bound across the path about 70-80 yards in front of me.

See it? Of course you do!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

My Awesome 5 to Welcome, 2015!


I have never been any good a New Year's Resolutions. So, instead, because a friend of mine on G+ started it, I took a quick look back. So here's My Awesome 5 that are the jumping off point for 2015:

1. My son got engaged and now I have a lovely daughter-in-law-to-be, plus the hope of grandchildren! How awesome is that?

2. One of my G+ photo posts surpassed 100 +1's for the very first time---all the way to 349 +1's! Yes, I know and agree, the point is not the numbers. Nevertheless, after 3+ years of participating really quite a lot on G+, it feels like an awesome milestone. (For you FB'ers, a +1 is a "like.")

3. And just to say it wasn't a fluke, within a couple of weeks another post went past 100 all the way to 373 +1's! I hope that means my photography is getting better! Awesome.

4. I got wonderful support from many G+'ers and FB friends for the book project I've been working on. It has really kept me going and now I need to get cracking and finish it!

5. I have set a date for retirement. This might seem like an odd one, but... for me to know that in May 2017, I'm walking away from full-time teaching, come hell or high water, is liberating. It's an objective that will help me focus my efforts on doing the things that most need doing to make that happen. I'm excited.

BTW, I took this photo at Restoration Park in West Monroe, which really is a rather awesome place. I'm proud of West Monroe for healing that land.