Early on a hot August day, we made a quick 2 a.m. run to the Rotes Kreuz Hospital in Wiesbaden, Germany. I called before we left our home in Königstädten, normally a 20-minute drive. There was no traffic at that hour, and I made it in less than 15 minutes. The doctor was already there waiting for us, and a room was ready. “Baby An Bord,” as the German bumper sticker said. We were soon to be parents.
My wife was in labor, but after several hours, the doctor decided to do a C-Section because she was becoming very fatigued. “She’ll need her strength for the days to come,” he said. I was relegated to the waiting room.
I paced the floor, waiting less than patiently. Within an hour, two nurses came into the room with our daughter, Shannon, wrapped in “swaddling clothes” – clothes that wrap an infant tightly in cloth to help the baby transition from the womb to the outside world.
The nurse placed her in my arms and said, “Hier ist Ihre kleine Tochter.” Her eyes were open and deep blue. Later she closed her eyes, and when she opened them again, her eyes were brown, like her mother’s. She was returned to her mother and I came in a little later to take this photo.
Wife and daughter were kept in the hospital for over a week with full care. The head nurse explained to me that they believed in keeping the mother safe and resting because “she’ll be plenty busy when she gets home.” An vast understatement, as we soon found out.
Theresa had a private room in the elegant old hospital on a hill overlooking the city of Wiesbaden on Schöne Aussicht Strasse – “Beautiful View Street.” And so it began.
See the USA in your Chevrolet America is asking you to call Drive your Chevrolet in the USA America’s the greatest land of all
On a highway, or a road along the levee Performance is sweeter Nothing can beat her Life is completer in a Chevy
So make a date today to see the USA And see it in your Chevrolet
Travelin’ east, Travelin’ west Wherever you go Chevy service is best Southward or north, near place or far There’s a Chevrolet dealer for your Chevrolet car
See the U.S.A. in your Chevrolet. The Rockies way out west are calling you Drive your Chevrolet through the U.S.A Where fields of golden wheat pass in review
Whether Trav’ling light or with a load that’s heavy Performance is sweeter, oh.. nothing can beat ‘er Life is completer in a Chevy So make a date today to see the U.S.A
And see it in your Chevrolet
The song “See The U.S.A. In Your Chevrolet” (title as filed for 1950 copyright) is a commercial jingle from c. 1949, with lyrics and music by Leo Corday (ASCAP) and Leon Carr (ASCAP), written for the Chevrolet Division of General Motors.
The view from my office window high above Market Street, looking up Van Ness, as the fog rolled in from the Golden Gate onto The City, changing day into night. I always had a sweater ready in the middle of summer.
The Changing Light by Lawrence Ferlinghetti
The changing light at San Francisco is none of your East Coast light none of your pearly light of Paris The light of San Francisco is a sea light an island light And the light of fog blanketing the hills drifting in at night through the Golden Gate to lie on the city at dawn And then the halcyon late mornings after the fog burns off and the sun paints white houses with the sea light of Greece with sharp clean shadows making the town look like it had just been painted
But the wind comes up at four o’clock sweeping the hills
And then the veil of light of early evening
And then another scrim when the new night fog floats in And in that vale of light the city drifts anchorless upon the ocean
I took this photo during a snow storm on our farm during the last winter of my beloved German Shepherd Nikki’s long life some years back. Her story over 14 years was one of trust, loyalty, protection, and love. I strive to follow her example.
The first to welcome, foremost to defend
Whose honest heart is still his Master’s own
Who labours, fights, lives, breathes for him alone
At beaches at and around Kalaloch are massive piles of driftwood washed ashore over decades and centuries. These “drift logs” include ancient trees that are several feet in diameter and tens of feet long that can weigh several tons.
Over time, the branches, bark, and heartwood—what appears to be nothing more than floating debris—become either home to or sustenance for a range of plants and animals that change the properties of the wood dramatically. This is an example.
Traveling north on Washington’s Pacific coast, vast sand beaches and endless horizons of rolling surf are replaced by towering stone stacks in a restless, crashing surf that carries battered driftwood the size of entire trees to the beach.
Inland lies the lush, primordial rainforest.
I love Kalaloch in winter when there are fewer people and the storms roll in, blackening the sky, sending mountains of water into the air before crashing to the beach. I rent a rustic cabin on the beach, going to sleep and waking up with the insistent pulse of the mighty ocean right outside my door.
In future posts, I will share more of this world. Here is Ruby Beach.
Good night, Emerald City, I’m on my way home across water. Shine on, you crazy diamond.
“Here in the corner attic of America, two hours’ drive from a rain forest, a desert, a foreign country, an empty island, a hidden fjord, a raging river, a glacier, and a volcano is a place where the inhabitants sense they can do no better, nor do they want to.”
– Timothy Egan, The Good Rain, Across Time and Terrain in the Pacific Northwest
I wonder what the future had in store for this child, whom I call Pigeon Boy.
He was shy, and he loved his pigeons.
I took this photo on my visit to the Ueno Zoo and Japan’s oldest Buddhist Temple, Sensō-ji, in the Taitō ward of Tokyo.
Here is a photo of Pigeon Boy’s apparent father and sister, who tended this large pigeon crate and sold small bags of grain to feed the pigeons. He watched me very closely and gave permission to take photos. I call him Pigeon Master.