Two young boys riding their bicycles along the boardwalk of a small town at sunset. Such a peaceful image…and it was. Everything about this scene translated to tranquility as Cheryl and I ate dinner along this beautiful coastline. These little guys were an added bonus as they were undoubtedly riding to meet their mother nearby to go home. No fear of anything which is how life should be, especially at their age-even though this locale is a tourist destination.
I wish all places throughout our world were like this; peaceful and serene. However, such is not the case. I am grateful we found this secluded refuge. I only wish millions of so many unfortunate children could experience this same dynamic.
Cherish the simple blessings in life…that’s what I tell myself. And, I do.
A month ago I voluntarily had surgery on my right hand; more specifically on my thumb. I had a condition where I over used my thumb by gripping things and squeezing things very hard and often over the course of many years. The pain started about ten years ago, but gradually became worse to the point where I could barely hold a pen or pencil and write legibly. Grabbing a glass became painful and squeezing the handle on a hose sprayer impossible to do. I tried on multiple occasions steroid shots and for a while they helped, but eventually didn’t. The base of my thumb which adjoins my hand bone had no cartilage (cushion) between them which created the pain plus the ligaments were badly worn out. The only alternative was surgery or not use my right hand which is my predominate hand for just about everything. I can’t really tell by this photograph of my x-ray where the exact problem lies, but the surgeon knew, thankfully!
Both images were taken before surgery. I am healing know, but the doctor says it may take up to six months to feel normal again, and up to a year to be 100%. Immediately after the surgery the pain was intense, but it diminishes as each day passes.
I share all of this not because I want you to feel sorry for me…far be it. I am very grateful that medical science can correct such a defect (my hope anyway). My overall purpose for this post is to share with you an insight I had since I the operation.
It seems to me that often to correct a problem, we have to make the decision to inflict a certain amount of pain or discomfort. Far too many of us are too comfortable to do just that. I was. Look at the world scene today…what a mess we are in. America alone has multiple serious issues we have tried to correct over decades, but haven’t. I realize this is a vague statement. However, the rest of the world seems to have little hope of correcting the problems of disease, malnutrition, slavery, adolescent sex trade, gross injustices, hatred, poverty, religious and ethnic persecution, economic crisis and so on.
At some point, we, as a human race must join together to correct all that is wrong in our world. I believe God will eventually do so, but wouldn’t it be wonderful if for a moment we could all agree on something of benefit for humankind? I chose to have this surgery out of necessity. It seems to me that there are far more important necessities awaiting us to correct. I pray that we would all work toward the solution to these great issues that affect us today rather than continuing to be part of the problem. Idealistic? Yes. Hopeful? Yes. However, won’t you join me anyway…even if it is a bit painful at first?
Infra-red thermal imagining technology. I understand that this title is not on everyone’s radar. It didn’t used to be on mine. However, after a prolonged career in the design-build industry of commercial construction, I was ready for a paradigm shift in vocations. I see an opportunity to not only earn an income in this break-thru technology, but perhaps in the artistic/imaging area of photography. I continue to play with possibilities. In the meantime, I focus on what value is already in-place with this vital technology. I believe most folks will see some benefit from it’s use. I hope to help my clients and friends realize the value in this technology.
Obviously, this is a photo of my Jeep after I just parked it. The engine is hot so it heats the front end of the vehicle and reveals warmer colors. The cooler colors show a less heat-intensive image. Think of the possibilities this technology offers. Everything from electrical equipment analysis, mechanical equipment overheating, abnormal heating of various types of equipment to the imaging of walls, ceilings and insulation, and even equine and human joint imaging.
I have been in the commercial and residential fields of construction for thirty years and wish I had come across this dynamic technology ten tears ago. From building envelopes and energy loss to minute mechanical analysis, this technology can reveal things the eye cannot see…preventing catastrophic failures during production to power outages.
I recently became a Level III thermographer via Infraspections Institute, the leading IR training company anywhere. I still have much to learn from direct application, but this much I know: expert training is critical to providing this service to commercial and residential structures. Email me, if you would like more honest information.
I also thought about using this technology as an artistic medium. I have much to do to practice my technique, but please look at the image below. Thanks!
This is a Turkey Vulture. He has his wings outstretched and back to the sun in an effort to warm his entire body. This is a common practice. I happened to see him as I began my early morning walk. I ran back to my car and grabbed my camera. His back was to me, but he didn’t seem to mind that I was walking closer to him.
As I drew closer he turned his head one way and then the other to watch me. He didn’t seem too concerned. The wingspan is typically 6 feet tip-to-tip!
As I stated, he didn’t seemed concerned about my presence and simply went back to exposing his back to the early morning sun. Perhaps he knew he was safe at 35 feet. I happened to meet a couple of gals taking an early morning walk as we looked upon this sight. They said matter-of-factly that this guy perches on their nearby decks daily. No, they don’t appreciate that and consider him ugly and intimidating. I suppose I would, too! However, from this vantage point, I thought him fascinating. Hope you discover something fascinating this week.
Talk about abrupt turns, this pine tree was hit with 100 mph winds ten days ago. The cutoff branch used to be pointed upward at an 80 degree vertical angle, but was snapped at the trunk, and then fell 90 degrees before the ground stopped it. Unfortunately, the tree cannot be preserved and will be removed soon. I planted a stand of Ponderosas on a section of our property shortly after we bought this house approx. thirty years ago.
Ponderosa pines are a beautiful evergreen tree, grow quickly and provide soft needles and great shape. Unfortunately, they are out of their temperate zone which is cooler and higher in elevation, so they are dying due to attrition. This particular tree must have been the weakest of the seven in this group. If you chose to, you can look at another post about this aging dynamic called SAP in last month’s posts.
However, this writing is more about people’s lives than trees-as vital as they are. Sometimes when I look upon a situation such as this storm damage, I resort to reflection and thinking about the days when I was younger and virile. I was invincible! Remember? Perhaps, that is how you may be feeling now…or just the opposite!
I have been encouraged by the profile statements and posts of so many younger writers. I see hope. Sure, there are the thrill seekers and those who boast about travel, but that equals adventure which is a good thing to possess. The self-emphasis will eventually erode away to quite confidence. In the meantime, don’t be surprised when a storm suddenly appears and takes you from the straight-away to a hard right. Go with the flow and see where the next path takes you. Reflect, accept and adapt.
What comes to mind when you read the word drip? A leaking faucet, perhaps? A roof with leaks large enough to place trash cans underneath to collect the welcomed water? Images of thatched roofs dripping from monsoons? The outer edge of umbrellas shedding the rainwater away from your head? Or, dare I say, even the constant whining from a family member or acquaintance?
I thought of leaves and flowers dripping from a fresh watering. In the following photos, I almost waited too long to capture the dripping water. How beautiful water droplets are!