Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Mountain Clouds - Photos

Flatirons,  Boulder, Colorado


Lenticular cloud over volcanic peak

Breckenridge, Colorado


Lenticular clouds   -  Japan


The past several days have been a television viewing pleasure - Clint Watts has been interviewed multiple times, as has Malcolm Nance and Naveed Jamali.  Several appearances by Richard Painter, and some of my favorite Congressmen and Congresswomen have also sweetened the view.  I did not watch the State of the Union address last night, but I did watch Joe Kennedy's Democratic rebuttal.  And I loved Joe Biden's tweet about Joe's speech.  I also laughed myself silly when Sarah Suckabee Sanders said that polls show that "no one" in America is interested in the Russia investigation....  What a hoot!
   Anyway, we've had warm weather and wind the past few days, but there is still snow and ice in the parking lot here.  It was 62 degrees yesterday, but then 26 last night...  Today, clouds are clinging to the tops of the Flatirons, while there are mostly clear skies to the north and east.  Besides our filled bird feeders, Bea tossed out raw almonds for the birds and squirrels this morning.  The usual ravens and blue jays were here, and then a flock of about 100 starlings appeared, but they left after ten minutes.  Tipsi, the white tail-tipped squirrel, has been much in evidence the past few days; and our usual sparrows, finches and chickadees are abundant.
  Tonight is the really wild and crazy lunar event - there's a "super" moon, a "blue" moon, a "blood" moon, and a total lunar eclipse.  My brother-in-law and his neighbor are planning out the best place to be, at the best time, to take photos of the event...  I plan on sleeping.  I'll see all sorts of wonderful photos via the internet tomorrow.
   I finished reading Emergence, the latest C. J. Cherryh Foreigner series book.  - And I want another new one, immediately, as usual.  Last night I finished reading the latest Pendergast novel, City of Endless Night, by Preston and Child - and I want another new book in that series, too.  I'm starting to re-read all the Pendergast novels, in order, again.
   And - just to be silly -  Enlighten yourself!  Go read a new book!

Monday, January 29, 2018

Colorado Snow - Photos

Oh Dear, I Upset a New Neighbor

I moved into the last available apartment in my building on 3 July 2015.  I was informed there was one assigned parking spot for each apartment, and mine was number 50.  There are 30 covered parking spaces, where folks park their cars behind an apartment on the first (ground) floor and under a second floor apartment.  I have a second floor apartment, and I thought my parking spot would be one of the four underneath it.  I was wrong.  My spot is uncovered, in the middle of the parking lot, but at least I can see it from my balcony.
  The only trouble is that the architects, or planners, have the parking lot sloping back to the middle of the lot.  That means that all the rain and all the snow melt runs right into those seven spots, including mine.  And during the winter, when we have temperatures and sun enough to melt snow, all the water flows to those parking spots.  And then the temperature drops to the teens and twenties during the night, and all that standing water turns to - you guessed it - ICE.
   Last Sunday, a week ago, we had 8 inches of snow fall on top of freezing rain.  On Monday, one of the neighbors moved out - I helped him load a few things into his truck, and he had a covered parking spot.  Usually, it takes the management company one to two weeks to clean and rehabilitate an empty apartment, so I asked the building manager if I could park in John's old spot until a new tenant moved in.  Andy, the manager, said, Sure! So, starting Monday night, a week ago, I began using the covered parking spot.  I spoke with Andy this past Friday, and he didn't say anything about a new tenant in John's apartment. So I continued to park there...
   Saturday evening, as I left to feed Pip and Squeak, I found an irate note taped to the driver's window of my borrowed car.   The paper itself was about 6 inches square - but clear packing tape had been used to attach it to the window, and the tape covered the window from top to bottom and side to side. - I guess that was the best way for the writer to express his/her outrage. -  The note read: This is my parking spot.  Because you have been parked here, I have had to move in at night parking further away and crossing ice.  Moving in was not a happy experience.  So thank you very much! -  It was written in a magenta marker, and was not signed.  It took quite an effort to remove the frozen tape from the window....
   However, I have parked in my assigned spot ever since.  I also immediately wrote an apology note, which I had planned on placing on the car which next parked in spot 59, John's covered spot.  No car has yet parked in that space...  I am sincerely sorry that I made the new tenant's move harder than necessary - but it bothers me that I haven't been able to apologize, either.  -  There has been a new addition to the parking lot; a burnt orange car with an equipment pod on the top, but it might belong to someone visiting friends....
   In any event, I am sorry, but I wish I could express it to the new tenant...   *** sigh ***

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Old Photos (Postcards) of Chincoteague Island

Main Street  -  1890

Atlantic Hotel  -  1910

Union Baptist Church  - 1910

Assateague Lighthouse  -  1915

Red Men's Hall  - 1910

Junior Order of United American Mechanics Hall  -  1910

Killock Shoal Lighthouse  -  1910

28 January 2018

Today is my Mom's birthday.  Were she still here, she'd be 97 years old.  She was the second child born to a man with dual citizenship (American and Swedish), who was a net mender and waterman, and the first born daughter of people who were generations long Chincoteaguers, with the exception of the Danish grandfather.  Mom was a born and raised Teaguer, but was always in love with the Old West of America.
    We always spoke on her birthday, wherever I was located... England, Colorado, Florida.  We were speaking on the telephone, and both of us were watching the launch of the space shuttle Challenger, when it exploded.  We had no words to convey our feelings of loss to each other....  Mom was always there for me.  She did worry a lot of my friends, because she wore bifocals, and, if she was near a person, she had a tendency to "look down her nose" at people, so she could see them clearly.  A lot of my friends thought that she was showing dislike, and I had to explain that she was just trying to see them clearly...
    We had great adventures together.  Dad had always said he was taking her to England to see the Crown jewels when he retired.  Well, Dad died before he could retire, so Mom and I went to look at the Crown jewels together.  We rented a car and drove through England, visiting Newmarket, the home of English horse racing.  We saw plays, went to Windsor Castle, went to the Royal Mews and saw the Gold Coach, and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves in book stores and shops.  We went to FanFare in Nashville, Tennessee, and Mom got to meet Loretta Lynn, while I got a kiss from Marty Robbins; and we went to the Grand Ole Opry and Opryland Park.   I also took her horse racing in Delaware, where she had a blast.  My sister Kathy took her to Alaska, and on several cruises.
   Unfortunately, a stroke, followed by Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease, dulled her interest in outside things.  She stopped reading, but loved to watch old movies and television shows.  She never ceased in her love of Raymond Burr's portrayal of Perry Mason.  She would slip from the present to the past in a heartbeat, and it was, occasionally, difficult to follow her time periods... 
    She passed away in her sleep, during an afternoon nap, a few months before she would turn 81...  It was the same way that Dad went, peacefully, in sleep in mid-afternoon.  I hope I go that way, too.
   I love you, Mom!!!

Friday, January 26, 2018

January in Southern Climes - and Vail, Colorado

Costa Rica

Easter Island

Lima, Peru

Vail, Colorado, USA

Rio de Janeiro

South Island, New Zealand

Cape Town, South Africa

Thursday, January 25, 2018

My Nocks Ancestors - Photos

Nocks Family in Indiana - seated at center are Lucy Hall Nocks (1794 - 1869)
and Eben (Ebenezer) Nocks (1792 - 1873) - my great-great-great-grandparents

Nocks Family in Kansas (above) - seated at center are Benjamin Nocks (1817 - 1907)
and Climena Cleveland Nocks (1821 - 1890)  - my great-great-grandparents

James Loren "J-Lo" Nocks   (1847 - 1933)

James Loren Nocks and his wife Martha Elizabeth Busey Nocks (1850 - 1933) -
my great grandparents

Emery Eben Nocks  (1884 - 1964)

My grandparents, Aunt and Uncles - E. E. Nocks, Aunt Hazel Nocks McBride,
grandmother Grace Pauline Lancaster Nocks (1888 - 1957), 
front left is Uncle Elmer Nocks, front right is Uncle Joe Nocks

My father, Charles Homer "Charlie" Nocks, ADR1 USN retired
(1923 - 1980)

Uncle Earl Gordon, front left; Mother Mildred Louise "Millie" Johnson Nocks  (1921- 2001),
with Dad, Charlie Nocks at the motor

24 Days, 11 Shootings

Yesterday was the twenty-fourth day of the new year, 2018.  Yesterday, the United States of America saw the eleventh shooting take place in a school this year.   Look at the numbers - 24 days, 11 incidents where gunfire was heard in a class room.  Something is not right in our society.  What has gone wrong?
   When white people infiltrated North America, they brought with them a society that was "more advanced" than the Native Americans had.  The main advantage was in weapons, the second was in disease immunity.White people wiped out the native people by killing them diseases the natives had no immunity against, by taking over the natives producing agricultural fields and the settlements near them, and by sheer force.  A bow with arrows and a spear, possibly a hatchet, were no match for a flintlock rifle.
   My own ancestors participated in "taming" America - one of my many-greats-grandfathers was a trader among the Algonquin-speaking tribes in Tidewater Virginia, and he took a native lady as his wife; but he was also a part of Bacon's Rebellion, and was hanged.  In New England, a lot of my ancestors killed natives, and were killed by natives. One ancestor, originally a cabinet-maker, ended up being the coffin-maker at Plymouth Plantation - he was rarely without work.
   And, of course, as the new American civilization moved westward, so, too, did my ancestors... usually with plows, but sometimes with guns.  My Mom was a great fan of "the Wild West," but my Dad, who was born in Oklahoma and raised in Oklahoma and Kansas during the Dust Bowl, knew the realities. 
    So why, today, in the year 2018, and the past year, 2017, did we Americans see so much violence wrought against school children, church-goers, and folks out to have a good time at concerts, clubs, and cinemas?  Why are people, young and old, grabbing a firearm and killing others?  Why?
    My parents did not own a gun while I was alive.  I know that Dad used to hunt for the dinner table as boy, and so did my Mom... They knew how to use a gun, but they did not own one.  I was taught how to use both a handgun and a rifle, and I have killed rattlesnakes - but I've never thought of using a weapon on another human being.  How can people do such things?
   Is it the proliferation of slow-motion bombings and killings that we now see regularly on television and at the theater?  Is it the proliferation of video games, where the object is to kill as many people or things as possible? 
    Why are the only people protesting these continuing horrors people who have been harmed or who have lost loved ones?
    We, as Americans, need to examine our moral fiber and see what is WRONG.
          Gun violence is NOT the answer.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Boulder Snow - Photos

Snow and Boulder

Sunday (two days ago) marked the deepest snowfall of the season - seven to eight inches, depending upon your location and the wind.  I figure we had 8 inches, since I had four inches of snow over ice on the car in the morning before I went out, and I had to remove another four inches at 5 p.m., when I made my evening trip to Pip and Squeak.  I realize that a lot of people in Boulder are new residents - we have a growth rate of more than 1,000 people each month - but it would be nice if people used common sense in snowy weather.
     First, when you clean off your car, besides the windshield and side and rear windows, clean off the mirrors and your headlights and tail lights!  If you don't have a good scraper, wait until your defroster works well enough to clear your windshield.
    Second, turn on your headlights!! 
   Third, if you are crossing an area that has NOT been cleared by a snowplow, remember that your vehicle WILL fish tail, if you use too much speed.
  Fourth, please do NOT ride on someone's bumper (like mine)....
  Fifth, be aware of crazy pedestrians - they will walk in front of you with great nonchalance - whether they have the right of way, or not.  A person ignored the "Do Not Walk" crossing sign yesterday, and was struck and killed by a vehicle.   -  Last night, in the dusk before true nightfall, a did not see a person dressed in either black or navy blue who was walking a black dog.  I DID see the white doggie poop bag, which was my only warning there was something/someone on the street corner.
  Sixth, please give yourself enough time to clear off your car (if you aren't lucky enough to have a garage, or covered parking) and get it warmed up BEFORE you leave for your destination...  Driving the roads without a clear view, and/or speeding to make up lost time is both dangerous and stupid.
  Seventh - be aware that "black ice" is everywhere - if you think you see water on the road when it's cold out, it's probably ice.  You will slide and swirl.  It's fun, if there is absolutely no one else around - but if you're in heavy traffic, count on multiple hits....

   My last comment is about the beauty of the snow at North Boulder Park - I pass it twice a day, morning and evening - and I have a fantastic time watching the cross-country skiers having a ball out upon the open playing fields coated with snow.  It's a glorious sight!

Monday, January 22, 2018

My Favorite Women's March Signs

*** WARNING  -  Crass vulgarity below  ***

Of course the orange circus peanut tweeted that women all around the United Sates were marching to celebrate his first year in Office, and to celebrate the "lowest women's unemployment rate in 18 years!"   - Yep - He's so vain.....