Whispers in Gray

Golden Gate Bridge – San Francisco, California

San Francisco is one of my favorite places to visit, specifically for the weather and terrain. I’ve been there enough over the years to appreciate the good along with the bad, which is why I no longer want to live there anymore. A fine place to visit, yes; to live, no. I had some friends that were long time residents of downtown San Francisco – having been there since the psychedelic paisley days of the late 1960s –whom decided to shutter their businesses, sell their home, and relocate far away from all of the crime, drugs, and homelessness that have inundated San Francisco in recent years. Which is a crying shame because it’s such a stunning city to experience.


Photo info:
Golden Gate Bridge
Fort Point National Historic Site
San Francisco, California
May 2003
Canon PowerShot G3 digicam

Celebrating Our Declaration of Independence

Old Glory and the USS Constellation – Baltimore, Maryland

Living in Maryland, one is constantly reminded about its rich history and the crucial role the state has played at critical points throughout our nation’s history. Given the current highly-polarized political climate, it’s easy to simply dismiss Maryland as just a blue state that always votes liberal, but that doesn’t do justice to the incredible list of contributions that the state and her people have made over the past 389 years.

  • Founded in 1632 by a colonial charter, Maryland was one of the original Thirteen Colonies of England
  • In 1649, it passed the Act Concerning Religion, a law that helped inspire later legal protections for freedom of religion in the United States
  • It was active in the events leading up to and during the American Revolution
  • Four of its delegates signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776
  • In 1790, it ceded the land required for the creation of our nations capital, Washington, D.C.
  • During the War of 1812, Maryland bore the brunt of the British attacks – some 11 major battles, 63 skirmishes, and 86 raids over a period of 2-½ years
  • The Star-Spangled Banner – our national anthem – was written in 1814 by Frances Scott Key, a native from the state, during the the bombardment of Fort McHenry in Baltimore.
  • Although it was a slave state at the time, Maryland remained in the Union during the American Civil War and was considered pivotal during the conflict due to its strategic location

The lengthy list goes on.

Similarly, each state in our union – whether blue, red, or purple – has made significant contributions to our great nation as a whole. On this day of national celebration – the Fourth of July – we need to remember that we are all part of the same nation.

Together.

All of us.

No matter the race, gender, religion, or political persuasion of each of us as individuals – we are all Americans.


Photo info:
The USS Constellation at dock
The Inner Harbor
Baltimore, Maryland
July 2014
Voigtländer 21/1.8 ASPH lens
Leica M240 digital camera

Published – The Skipjack, Wilma Lee

The skipjack, Wilma Lee – Ocracoke Island, North Carolina

Back in mid-January of 2014, Cindy and I made a mad dash for the Outer Banks of North Carolina, to see a rare irruption of snowy owls all the way down on Ocracoke Island. While we were successful in that venture, we saw other things of note there as well – including a rare Chesapeake Bay skipjack, the Wilma Lee. You can read all about Chesapeake skipjacks here, but most of the remaining examples of them are on static displays at museums – not actually floating in the water or even able to sail anymore.

Within a few weeks after I had published my image on my old blog, I received a commercial use inquiry from an Annapolis-based sailing publication, Spinsheet. We negotiated terms, came to an agreement, and within a month my photo was used as the title image for their article on the Wilma Lee – which was being used at the time as a tourboat for visitors and as a floating classroom for school children. The Wilma Lee was severely damaged by Hurricane Arthur some six months after I took my photo of her, and she has since changed hands again and is now berthed at the Annapolis Maritime Museum & Park in Maryland.

In the publication – Annapolis, Maryland

Photo info:
The Chesapeake skipjack, Wilma Lee
Ocracoke docks
Ocracoke Island, North Carolina
January 2014
Apple iPhone 5S