I'm back! I'm moved! I'm far from settled in! But with the fall leaves becoming sparser and sparser we all decided to go for a bit of a drive this morning to see how things were doing on Carter Ford, just a few miles away and down a long narrow dirt road. ("Down" and "narrow" are the operative words....) There we found actual water in the creek, some leaves still on most trees, and the rhododendron bushes looking beautiful even without their July blooms. So now, to continue the "not yet unpacking" motive of the day, here is my post with some of the informal photos I took this very morning!
|The straight up to the sky tree growth is very typical in our Appalachian forests.|
|We thought this was a playful Hallowe'en mask in the making!|
|This is the "we."|
|Here is enough water to make a refection.|
|This other reflection intrigued me -- it looks so seamless.|
|mossy rocks all along the banks|
|and fish swimming in circles, perhaps because there is nowhere to go? We think these are trout.|
|With more time I might have made a better photo from this, but I love this image even so.|
This year, of course, is also the shock of a disheartening presidential election -- an unnecessarily rough and alienating undertaking this time around. I feel I must comment on how I admire Hillary Clinton for the grace under pressure she has demonstrated when faced with an opponent who only knows name calling and rudeness and who contradicts himself to the point of telling constant lies. His narcissism is more than a personality trait. It seems like a fullblown narcissistic personality disorder, and I feel this is very dangerous and destabilizing for someone who is supposed to be a leader -- which requires being a responsible and visionary human being, NOT a vindictive and fearmongering one.
I know we are spoiled after eight years of a White House without scandal, and we forget how most families treated like the Obamas have been would have caved by now. They have not. They deserve our sincere appreciation, at the very least, for their hard work and steadiness. I think history will treat them very well.
None of these candidates is perfect, and I am not trying to say my way is the right way or the only way. But I would feel less than an active citizen of this remarkable ongoing experiement that is the United States if I did not speak my mind. What happens on election day is always important, even if we mistakenly take voting for granted. This year it feels like that in addition to choosing a candidate we are being required to show our support for our very own democracy!! (Voting for someone who does not have a chance of winning is the same, to me, as throwing your vote away. It is like being a sore loser. Why not instead decide to begin to take part in local politics and make needed changes from the ground up?) It takes work by all of us to make our democracy work. Please do vote. Do your part.
note: I wrote all this for two people I care about. One is my young friend J. who is convinced that Hillary sent people to die in a war that she initiated. He read this somewhere on the internet. Of course this is not true, since she was only a Senator when the war in Iraq was declared. She did not have powers that are the president's. You don't want to believe me on this, J., but you are smart and one day you will figure out there actually are no simple answers or solutions, and there are people willing to exploit us citizens on their way to power. What is important is for each of us to practice, practice, practice using our brain to think for ourselves. Why else do we have brains?? Go for it!!
The other person this is for is my mother, who died in 2008 the day Obama was elected. She was 92 and always voted, but that year, for health reasons, she had had to vote absentee, in New Hampshire. However, she could never fully believe that her vote would count if she died before the election. My sister Robin was there the night before and that election day morning, and she decided to tell my mother, at 8 a.m., "Ma, isn't it great that Obama got elected!" Our mother died an hour later; we feel she felt permission to do so.