Placeholder, yet again

5 November, 2017            Placeholder, yet again

Some weeks, blog posts just write themselves. Then, in sharp contrast, there’s weeks like this. I just looked and this is my 312th blog post since I began this blog on March 2, 2011 – with a blog post with no picture! The only one I’ve ever done, I’m pretty sure. This blog post has almost no pictures, and even less text. So a few pictures I’ve enjoyed – a little bit – and I’ll let it go for seven days.

I did a post this week last year called The worst form of government. It’s not a brilliant post either, but the content is appropriate for today. This is how it opens: 6 November, 2016            The worst form of government

“…democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms…” – Winston S Churchill, 11 November 1947

So anyway, vote on Tuesday.

And this is how it closes: The worst form of government

I understand that we’re seeing the worst of “the worst form of government,” at least in my lifetime. But it’s better than any other form. America will do great. Just vote. May the best candidate win.

So anyway, just vote.

I trust the process. Things will work out. Make sure you vote.

An apolitical image – the mighty James River, around 11:00 this morning:

The mighty James River this morning, not in cheerful light, but no less beautiful:

I took this picture of lichen on granite about ten yards from where I took the preceding picture, five minutes later. Lichen is fascinating stuff – part algae, part fungus. I understand very little about it. It’s gorgeous, though.

Lichen (and maybe moss) on granite within a few feet of the James River this gray and lovely morning

This week I finished a book called The Living Forest: A Visual Journey into the Heart of the Woods by Joan Maloof and Robert Llewellyn. Every hike at Pony Pasture is “a visual journey into the heart of the woods” and Ms. Maloof and Mr. Llewellyn piqued my curiosity about lichen (and about a lot of other features that tend to fade into the background if I look at them too often). Ms. Maloof’s text and Mr. Llewellyn’s photographs encouraged me to revisit some fascinating sights on our hike.

Ms. Maloof wrote about how different bark is on so many different trees, and I’ve always been calmed by the steady texture. It only occurred to me as I typed the last sentence how ironwood resembles granite. 

That’s just bark on wood. Isn’t it spectacular?

This post is thin on color and texture (and content and interest, possibly) so I’ll wind up with a couple of flashes of color.

Moss gleaming on the forest floor

And finally, brightest picture of the week, our nasturtiums continue to thrive – even today (though I took this picture Wednesday):

Evelyn’s nasturtiums are not meek or weak

I’ll close with a quote from Albert Einstein that Ms. Maloof used in the book: “What I see in Nature is a magnificent structure that we can comprehend only very imperfectly, and that must fill a thinking person with a feeling of humility. This is a genuinely religious feeling that has nothing to do with mysticism.” I’m drawn to the concept of “…a genuinely religious feeling that has nothing to do with mysticism.”

Have a great week,


About Jay McLaughlin

I am a rehabilitation counselor. I have many friends with autism and traumatic brain injuries. They help me learn new things constantly. I hike with dogs at the James River in Richmond - a lot. I've completed an Iron distance triathlon a year for 11 years. My most recent was in Wilmington, NC in November, 2013. I currently compete in mid-distance triathlons. And work and hike and take pictures and write and eat.
This entry was posted in Flowers, Fun, fungus, James River, Pony Pasture, Rivers, Smiles (including "dog smiles"!) and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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