WPC — Orchid Awakening

For this week’s Weekly Photo Challenge, we’ve been task with showing, in the spirit of rebirth in the spring season, an image of an awakening.

Where I live (San Francisco, CA), we don’t really have a old, snowy, freezing winters, so many plants (and other living things) continue to grow and bloom year round.

My wife loves orchids and we have a bunch growing in our garden and five or six potted orchids inside our home. During most of the year, some of them are in bloom. Right now, though, there’s only one that seems to be “awakening.” And so I decided to take this picture (with my iPhone 8 Plus) of the new buds that my wife assures me will be opening up over the coming few days.

WPC — Make Me Smile

I need to apologize in advance for this post. When this week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge called for us to share a photo of something that has brought a moment of joy into our life recently, or to focus on the outcome of that joy, I looked through the photo folder on my iPhone. I found pictures of my wife, kids, and pets, all of which brought smiles to my face and joy to my life.

But then I asked myself what, in these troubled times, would make me smile the most? What could bring me the most joy?

And this is what I found:

224CB3DB-D113-4C02-B5AC-0A4AC6F5BCDDOkay, this is not a photo I took. It is not something that has brought any joy to me yet. But if I were ever to see a picture — a real picture — of Donald Trump behind bars or of him and his despicable family wearing orange prison jump suits, I cannot express to you what a huge smile that would put on my face and how much joy that would bring me.

29508D27-9083-4A7E-9401-C77CE675A50CAnd as far as I’m concerned, it can’t happen soon enough.

WPC — Pacific Sunset

For this week’s Weekly Photo Challenge, we are asked to share our favorite photos of a sunrise or a sunset.

I do wake up early every morning before sunrise, but I spend the first hour or so in bed reading posts that show up on my iPhone’s WordPress app’s reader. So I have no sunrise pics to share.

But in the early evenings, my wife and I often walk our dog to the top of Strawberry Hill in Golden Gate Park. And sometime the views looking west toward the setting sun over the Pacific are picture-worthy.

So here are a few of my favorite sunset pictures.


SoCS — Picture Perfect

I don’t know why I had so much trouble with this week’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt from Linda G. Hill. The instructions seemed relatively straight forward. “Write about, or theme your post on, the first picture you see when you sit down to start writing. You don’t need to describe the picture necessarily — you can even put yourself in it if you’re not already there.”

So should I look at the newspaper or a magazine first thing after I wake up, find a picture, and clip it into this post? Should I write a bit of flash fiction around a picture? After all, as Rod Stewart sang, every picture tells a story.

But then I had this brilliant idea to Google “interesting pictures.” You know what? There are a lot of interesting pictures on the internet. Who knew?

Anyway, perhaps the most interesting picture I saw was this one of a remarkable cloud formation somewhere over New Zealand.

4FABFF3B-8C19-45A2-8922-7A13922EDBC6This type of cloud formation is called “undulatus asperatus.” It is formed when there’s rising air that creates a wide-spread cloud cover, together with wind shear that blows across the rising air. This can set up gravity waves, where air moves up and down as buoyancy and gravity battle it out, creating long rippling waves that carry the clouds up and down.

While the undulatus asperatus clouds in the picture appear somewhat menacing, storms seldom follow their dissipation.

This particular photograph, which came from NASA, generated a weird amount of online notoriety because it was featured in several conspiracy-oriented websites that claimed it was evidence of government manipulation of the weather.

Damn chemtrails.

WPC — The Top of the World

This week’s Weekly Photo Challenge asks us to “share an image of your happy place, a secret spot you love, or a faraway location you return to again and again.”

I love panoramic, scenic views and one of the best places around San Francisco to get a sweeping view of the area is at the top of Mount Tamalpais in Marin County, just across the Golden Gate Bridge north of the city. Known locally as Mount Tam, its elevation is 2,753 feet.

It’s not exactly a secret place, but it is a spot my wife and I love, and we go there every few months to get away from the hustle-bustle of the city and to savor the views. It’s a short hike from the parking lot up to the summit.

If you ever get to the Bay Area, be sure to put a visit to Mount Tam on your list.