Friday, July 19, 2019

Out of the Jurisdiction: Lisbon II

Lisbon's National Coach Museum has a collection of the carriages used by Portuguese royalty over the centuries.  They are stunning.  These three were used in a triumphal procession orchestrated by King Joao in the 16th century to celebrate his fleet rounding the Cape of Good Hope.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Out of the Jurisdiction: Lisbon

There is time for one photo from Lisbon tonight, so it has to be Belem Tower.
It is an early 16th century tower on the Tagus River built as a fortress but, just as much, as a ceremonial gateway to Lisbon.  It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Ridgefield Victorian

Just steps off Main Street, a meticulously painted and maintained Victorian house catches my eye.

Tomorrow:  Lisbon, Portugal.

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Leila and her friends

I spotted Leila coming toward me.  In a leopard pattern.  And a tiara.  A bare midriff.  And braids.
She was happy to be photographed, but she picked a location with harsh light and shadows.
I told her I didn't think the lighting would work.  These two pics could he saved by heavy cropping.

Then, around the corner came the friends who were meeting Leila for lunch.  Square pink glasses and a sundress.  A shaved head.  Tattoos everywhere.  We found a nearby place where 
an awning provided the necessary shade.   

Meet Sunny (square pink glasses), Alexis (black dress), Rockie (shaved head and tattoos), Olivia  (black camisole and fish tattoo on her shoulder), Tiara (pink and black dress and wanting to be anywhere else), Jess (tie-dyed dress) and Leila.  The baby declined to be identified.

Monday, July 15, 2019


A pair of swans and their two cygnets spend their time on Lake Naraneka in Ridgefield.

Sometimes in open water, sometimes near a dock.

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Red Dress Race for Women. And Kids.


The kids start the races.  100 yards for the youngest.  Half mile and mile for the older.

The start!  Brittney Telke (a former UConn cross country runner who has won the event several times in the past) was in the lead by the first turn.  She finished an amazing 2 minutes and 
30 seconds ahead of the second place runner.

It is a fun run.  Some runners pushed strollers.

Many wore red tutus.

Even the pace setters.

This family runs together every year and finish together.

Afterward there is food and swag.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

More People I Have Met

Chane (pronounced Shane) is from Antigua.  She came to the States eight years ago to work.
She manages a wine bar in West Hartford center.  Chane was wearing a crisp white blouse 
and walking past a white wall.  How could I resist?

And how could I resist Trevor's style?  Especially that bowtie?  And we had an interesting background.  I'm so sorry I let him stand where a seam would run through his head.

Kristen was walking back from lunch with Trevor.  They are both medical assistants at a health care facility.  At least I was able to move her over so the seam didn't go through her head.

A friend was taking Mary's senior picture in Elizabeth Park.  Two big dogs were tugging at leashes in my left hand while I squeezed off a fast photo with my right hand.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Hosta, Coleus and Shingles

This north-facing West Hartford house gets a lot of shade in the front.
Hosta, coleus, mountain laurel and rhodies work nicely in the shade.
The shingles make us feel like we are on Nantucket or Martha's Vineyard.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

The Cycle of Life

Prominent international architect Tai Soo Kim lives near Elizabeth Park.  He worried that old trees were being taken down, but tight budgets constrained a vigorous tree replacement program.

So, he donated $100,000 to the Elizabeth Park Conservancy to fund the planting of new trees.  
Last fall and this spring, healthy young trees have appeared all around the park.

Well done, Mr. Kim.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Many A's for These Ladies

Anita.  Angelina.  Angelica.  Angela.
Four women dressed for an afternoon in the Elizabeth Park rose gardens.  I had leashes for two eighty pound dogs in one hand and a camera in the other so I couldn't take notes.

This is Anita.  She was the group's photographer.  
Anita handed the camera to a young girl so I could take her picture.

Here we have Angelica and Angelina.  Or Angelina and Angelica.

The A with the blue flower in her hair had a marvelous 1940s or 1950s styling.

I am pretty sure this is Anita.  (Oops . . . no . . . Angela.)  She used to work in a tattoo parlor.  
The boss got bored and tattooed her arm.

Monday, July 8, 2019

A New Mural in Hartford

Corey Pane is a local artist known at first for designing brightly colored hiphop patterns for the athletic shoes of professional football and basketball players.  He has branched out into painting canvasses and painting murals.  I showed his mural tribute to Nipsey Hussle in May.

Cirque du Soleil is in town this month to present "Luzia."  They hired Pane to paint a mural celebrating Mexican heritage in Hartford.  It is on the side of a parking garage underneath Constitution Plaza, Hartford's oldest high-rise office building.  The banners seen on the walkway above the mural advertise Stanley Black & Decker's manufacturing innovation hub on the first level.

See Monday Mural for more posts of murals.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Talcott Mountain Music Festival

Simsbury is on the other side of Talcott Mountain from West Hartford.  They have built a stage in a park near the Farmington River.  It is the summer home of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra. 

On Friday evening, the HSO and the choir of the Asylum Hill Congregational Church performed an annual concert of patriotic music.They announced a crowd of about 7,000 but it felt bigger to me.

The concert began with the pledge of allegiance, with colors presented by the First Company Governor's Foot Guard.  The Foot Guard was organized in October 1771 and is
 the oldest military organization in continuous existence in the United States.

The orchestra played pieces like a compendium of American folk songs by Morton Gould, the official songs of the five American armed forces, the suite from Oklahoma, and some movie music
 (Dances with Wolves, Raiders March and Titanic Suite).

By nine o'clock, the sky was completely dark.  The orchestra and choir concluded with
God Bless America, a stirring rendition of the 1812 Overture, and Stars and Stripes Forever.

The concert ended, as a Fourth of July concert always does, with fireworks.
I didn't want to disturb other guests by bringing my big elephant gun camera,
so I used my iPhone.  An acceptable compromise, I thought.

Yesterday was the start of the tenth year of this blog.

Saturday, July 6, 2019


May is a charmer.  She was born in Burma (Myanmar) and came to the States when she was nine.  She has lived all over the East Coast and graduated from college in Rhode Island.

May now works in corporate brand marketing for Stanley Black and Decker in New Britain.
I told her I went to the Travelers Championship golf tournament where Stanley Black and Decker sponsored a big entertainment area.  May said, "That was mine!!!"