You are three years old, sitting between your mother and father on an airplane. It is summertime and you are going to visit your aunt and your big cousin in New York. For now, Mami and Papi are your whole world.
With the exception of the feathered friends who ply our bird feeders (and the rascal squirrels that rob their share), it’s easy to believe that most other creatures have vanished into thin air at this time of year. Animals we often encounter in warmer months seem to be absent as we hike or drive in the Upper Delaware River region.
Those three words pop up frequently here in the Upper Delaware River region and have transformed the way I view art. While it may be perfectly fine to go to a gallery and stroll the halls making personal observations, getting a glimpse into the mind of the creator often puts a whole new spin on the subject at hand.
Two recent events are playing off each other in my mind.
Sometime in the early 1970s, I rented the Cessna Skyhawk from our aero club near where I was stationed in Germany. Although it was a little breezy, the weather forecast was good for that Saturday afternoon. I took my camera along, which was a Minolta 35mm film SLR at the time; I was hoping to get some aerial photos of some nearby landmarks.
No, I’m not about to fill an entire page with sticky, gooey, far-too-sweet, lighter than air nothingness. Or am I? Not entirely unlike the marshmallow crème, a “fluff piece” is a form of journalism, even though there are folks who would argue the point. And in fact, it’s what I do.
“To the attentive eye, each moment of the year has its own beauty, and in the same field, it beholds, every hour, a picture which was never seen before, and which shall never be seen again,” wrote 19th-century American poet, philosopher and essayist, Ralph Waldo Emerson.
It’s no secret that I’m Jewish and celebrate Hanukkah rather than Christmas, but since the Jewish calendar follows the lunar cycle, the “Festival of Lights” falls on a different date every winter, and this year it coincides with all things ho ho ho. And although the first night of Hanukkah fell on Christmas Eve, it’s still ongoing.
For some reason conductors in Santa hats seemed wrong. It would be nice if they were giving free train passes, but that is never the case. Well, that was last week. Now, as we get closer to ending this year’s journey around the sun, we wonder what the new year will bring.
At the writing of this column, the temperature is in the low 20s and the wind is blowing at 20 mph with higher gusts. A winter storm is forecast for the upcoming weekend, with several inches of snow possible before it turns to rain. It is certainly a good time to be indoors writing a River Talk column.