What Remains?

After you have exhausted what there is
In business, politics, conviviality, and so on
Have found that none of these finally satisfy,
Or permanently wear
What remains? Nature remains.
Walt Whitman- Song of Myself

Deadman’s Pass in Boynton Canyon,  Sedona Arizona is quiet in the morning. A walk-a-bout more than a hike, a connecting path between Boynton Canyon and  Long Canyon.  Good to be out in the clean clear air while frost is on the thick stands of manzanita and the deer and birds show themselves.

Hot Loop Trail, located off Jacks Canyon Road in the Village of Oak Creek, Sedona Arizona is a favorite.  Sharing A Hike On  Hot Loop While Old  provides an appreciation, such gratitude  on still having the strength, agility, and wits about me to make the thousand foot climb upward to views that are stand up straight shoulder squaring.   No other hikers but us the entire trek, which is excellent, considering the heavy density of use on so many of Sedona’s trails. The peace, quiet, and bird song, as well as that physical workout deeply energize. An ace choice of hiking trails for the New Year of 2019.

Carroll Canyon, Old Post, and the Ridge Trails are very much ‘in town’,  neighborhood trails. Quick access to outdoors whether on a lunch break from employment at a close by coffee shop, a break for a take away slice or tamale picnic in a day of errands, or out for establishing that exercise every morning routine.  There is activity here. Noise from the sky from the tourist helicopter tours taking off and landing from nearby Sedona Airport,  mountain bike enthusiasts enjoy these trails for their proximity to bike rentals, but then there will be a stretch of quiet time, red rock beauties, solitude, and flowers blooming in winter, or  a red tailed hawk swooping deep through Carroll Canyon to surprise and delight and elude the camera lens.

 The holidays over, the family and friends returned home or traveled on, decorations packed away and fond memories held onto. To Mescal Trail one of the most beautiful areas in Sedona, and one we enjoy in the winter. There was an observation made over the holidays that my website often made it seem as though we were the only ones out hiking in Sedona and that their recent traffic jammed up tight experiences between the Village of Oak Creek and Sedona said otherwise. It was an accurate observation.

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The slideshow above is a  sample of what ‘peopling’ a Sedona Arizona photo essay looks look like. A visual ‘loved to death’ scenario unfolding all around Mescal Trail and much of the area this week as thousands of tourists finish off 2018 in Sedona Arizona.  Clearly we are not the only ones who have chosen to welcome the New Year with being out in nature.

My  personal New Years Resolution is to spend as many days as possible outside in nature.  These three beautiful hiking trails and a walk about recently have reinforced to me that I have made a most excellent choice, a totally enjoyable commitment for 2019.

Thank you for visiting. All my best to each and every one of you for this New Year of 2019.

Comments Closed

 

“Curiouser and Curiouser”

“Curiouser and Curiouser.”
― Lewis Carroll,
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
& Through the Looking-Glass

What fun to look back through the year’s photographs. So many ‘favorites’ and the opportunity to pause and recall many an excellent moment from this almost gone year. Have enjoyed sharing so many of those moments through photographs with you.

In response to  Word Press Photo Challenge: 2017 Favorites

News/Music: Fatboy Slim: Weapon of Choice, The Worst Antiscience BS in 2017-MOther Jones

 

“You Can Observe A Lot By Watching”

“You Can Observe A Lot By Watching”
L.P.Berra

A quick curving ascent of pavement above the City of Flagstaff Arizona, just before dusk.  A visit to the  Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff Arizona on the day of the Geminoid Meteor Showers.

Here is how the Lowell Observatory describes itself:

Lowell Observatory, founded by Perceival Lowell in 1894, is a private, non-profit institution dedicated to the research and education in astronomy. Home of many important astronomical discoveries including the first evidence of the expansion of the universe and discovery of the planet Pluto., Lowell Observatory continues as an active major research observatory today. Sharing our founder’s conviction that scientist bear an obligation to convey their work in a way that all interested people can appreciate, the Observatory also offers educational programs to school children, and the general public.

Here is how I describe the visit to the Lowell Observatory:

A day to savor as a time so filled to the brim, overflowing with wonder and  cool.  Of humans embracing and chasing curiosity, talent, and the very universe. Being at the Lowell Observatory opened me to both remember and consider anew about just how much bigger the Story unfolding is than my own experience.  A day full up with a strong infusion of inspiration

First we attended lectures on The Solar System, and another Stars and Galaxies. The young women who presented  were knowledgeable, well spoken, and passionate about their love of space and exploration. Learned so much, including that the, much photographed by me, moon was once a part of the earth and broke away;  the three qualifications to be considered a planet are : It is in orbit around the Sun. It has sufficient mass to assume hydro-static equilibrium (a nearly round shape). It must also  “clear the neighborhood” around its orbit which means it is  gravitationally in charge in its vicinity in space.

Next visited, the Putman Collection where the Science Library, artifacts, and collections are offered. Just a glimpse of a few of the displayed treasures:

Including the  centerpiece in the lobby –  Percival Lowell’s 1911 Stevens-Duryea automobile. “Big Red” was Lowell’s state-of-the-art “horseless carriage” which still appears in local parades:

Then to the telescopes to see what is currently in the sky!

The McAllister Telescope, a reflecting telescope with a Cassegrain optical system featuring a 16- inch primary mirror. The largest telescope I have personally ever seen.  The dials and mechanics mesmerize and dare me to figure out how they work together to show the very stars. Once again a Guide to knowledgeably/ enthusiastically explain, and assists in using the telescope. Adrenaline push and a happy dance;  then yet another look  into timelessness  with gratitude and high spirits step out into the cold fresh high altitude pine scented Flagstaff air. A short  walk to The Clark Telescope Dome:

The Clark Telescope Dome was built in 1896 by local bicycle repairmen Godfrey and Stanley Sykes. There is much local Ponderosa Pine in the construction and has the look and feel of love, artistic attention as well as sustainability of  Italian Cathedrals.  The Clark Telescope surprised me with it’s size, dwarfing,  the just minutes ago largest ever I”d seen,  McAllister Telescope. The Clark Telescope built in 1896 was the instrument used when the first evidence of the universe expanding was discovered. To have the opportunity to not only photograph this beautiful piece of equipment, but to watch it in motion as the dome is opened. Consider the Sykes brothers as chains, wheels,  and gears smoothly swing the scope into the place and yet another set of instruments to be adjusted and set. Then the  Guide offers a look, and there I am gone clear through space to see clear to turquoise blue Uranus. That’s right ! No words to use to describe to you the positive sea-change shift that such a look into space gives. Using the telescope that was used to discover the expansion the universe. Can you give me an Amen!

The night continued with a careful drive down Oak Creek Canyon with raccoons,deer, and skunk on the move and the Geminid Meteor Shower in dazzling full swing overhead. The energizing fullness and wonder of this visit to the Lowell Observatory remains.

I wish to take this time to thank you for your support, kind words, and interest in the success of JoHannaMassey.com in 2017. I enjoy visiting with you here, and on your websites whose quality challenge me to do better, teach and inform me daily, surprise me and make me laugh and provide a very real sense of a global community through WordPress. Such a diversity and exchange of ideas and people to appreciate and consider. May each and everyone  of you experience and share Joy and Peace during  this Holiday Season. Again, thank you. – JoHanna

Music/News- Alex Cross- Mad World, What the United States Could Have Done With Trump’s 1.5 Trillion Tax Cuts for the Rich…

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Wherever I Am Going

‘Peace in my Heart.
Peace on my Soul
Wherever I am going,
I’m already Home.’-

A safe and peaceful weekend to each and everyone.

In response to WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Ascend

Oxford American Writer’s Thesaurus:

Ascend: verb ascending the stairs | we watched the missiles ascend: climb, go up/upward, move up/upward, rise (up), clamber (up); mount, scale, conquer; take to the air, take off; rocket. ANTONYMS descend.

 

What You Have Tamed

“Men have forgotten this truth,” said the fox.
“But you must not forget it.
You become responsible, forever,
For what you have tamed.”

Antoine de Saint Exupery

Gray Fox arrived to the walled garden as a delicious secret. Appearing unexpected and for the first time at the townhouse,  for cover the sparseness of the desert willow saplings.  More prancing movement than form-along the  late afternoon shadow-for the  length of hedge. Through the cover of the willows again. In a  quick graceful leap Gray Fox is atop the vine sheltered corner where garden walls meet,  takes a good look about and then curls up nicely in repose. She has a full view  of the garden,  and a quick vanish option by simply slipping over to the other side and gone. She has a full view of me.

An estimate would be that Gray Fox is about two feet in length with a tail to match that two full feet, fifteen pounds,  and appears to me a young adult. A full healthy coat of thick fur which runs from gray to rust to white with black accents and trim. Golden eyes that stare deep.

Gray Fox will mate,  somewhere between January and April  in the Southwestern United States, often birthing a half dozen pups.  Her mate and her stay together for the romance through the rearing of the pups, with shared responsibilities. Pups are weaned at three months, taught and able to hunt on their own at four months, and leave their parents in the autumn of the year. Gray Fox and her mate may or not seek out and choose each other to mate and rear offspring again,  their  average lifespan being six to eight years.  Gray Fox’s extended family is scattered far and near, not a red alert threat for extinction, but there are often serious concerns due to habitat loss, poor quality habitat, food sources, disease, parasites. Some diseases and parasites being contagious to other species.  Being caught out and killed by humans, bobcats, golden eagles, great horned owls is possible for Gray Fox.

Gray Fox eats rodents, insects, fruits, vegetables, and birds. Rabbits are a favorite as are  grasshoppers and crickets currently bountiful. It’s important not to habituate them to humans by feeding, they are wild things best left wild.

Gray Fox is secretive, nocturnal, moves about mainly at dawn and dusk, avoids confrontation, is excellent at camouflage, tree climbing, and if forced capable of a good winning fight.

Gray Fox has showed up throughout my life, observed and gone dozens of times and places. On a Cottage Roof along Pamlico River, high above  in a Pine in deep Oregon woods,  a chicken coop in New Jersey, Heart Island as a child.  Never tame or taming, the periodic and fleeting visits always honored as a gift. A pattern and portent of coming change and transformation observed.

In 1997 my dear friend Bonnie gifted me with the book , Animal Speak by     Ted Andrews. Ted Andrews wrote in seductive and beautiful words  of  the mythological, metaphysical, mystical, historical, shaman, and spiritual realm connection of critters. Basically the belief is that  species appear to individuals  with signs and messages.  By observing their behavior and attributes, and the careful consideration of circumstances in life when they show up, they are designated as an individual’s totem. Having Gray Fox as a totem is overflowing with mystery and magic. Who wouldn’t want to embrace the fun of  life charged up on Feminine Magic, Shape-shifting, Cunning,  Big Transition, Supernatural Power, Freeing of the Creative Force, and the ability to dwell ‘Between Worlds’ – ‘Mix this Sedona Speak with my  preexisting science background, and lifetime wanderlust it can surely  make for a fairly exhilarating day.  I do believe I choose  Shape-shifting, Feminine Strength,  and Camouflage as my choice of  prancing through this season of holidays with calm, safety, and joy.

Over the years I have been told and read many stories about Gray Fox. Of the Choctaw Tribe who believe Gray Fox is the protector of the family, the Apache story of Gray Fox stealing the fire from the sun and gifting it to humans.

Acknowledging the message from Gray Fox of possible big upcoming transformation,  I encourage Gray Fox take  a quick exit back to Coconino National Forest that borders this Planned Unit Development where humans may not see magic transformation in progress  in sighting that  big  bushy tail.

In response to WordPress Photo Challenge: Transformation

A safe and joyful holiday season to each and everyone. I send a heart filled with gratitude for your kind words, support, insightful smart websites, shared lives, and feeling  of community  that we have shared throughout the year.

 

Gray Fox : Order: Carnivora Family: Canidae
Genus: Urocyon

More Carefully Examined

“See now the power of truth;
The same experiment
Which at first glance
Seemed to show one thing,
When more carefully examined,
Assures us of the contrary.”
Galileo Galilei,

Raptor: Super B&W- Photo: JoHanna Massey Autumn 2017

Have photographed the raptors several more times since  ‘Unless We Go Alittle Crazy.‘ Photographing them is simply bliss, chunks of time fall away and by return home to peruse the newest images, I’m surprised to find the morning vanished too.

Enjoying the focus on editing several sets of the same subjects, each unique, experimenting with all the variations and editing options, often for the first time. The  focus and attention to details grows.  Today I am experimenting with the Black & White features of the tools.

In response to Krista Steven’s choice for subject in this week’s  WordPress Photo Challenge: Experimental

Galileo Galilei, Quote FromDiscorsi E Dimostrazioni Matematiche: Intorno a Due Nuoue Scienze, Attenenti Alla Mecanica & I Movimenti Locali

 

Wishing each and everyone their  best and highest outcomes.

Oxford American Writer’s Thesaurus

Experimental: adjective1 the experimental stage: exploratory, investigational, trial, test, pilot; speculative, conjectural, hypothetical, tentative, preliminary, untested, untried.2 experimental music: innovative, innovatory, new, original, radical, avant-garde, cutting-edge, alternative, unorthodox, unconventional; informal way-out.REFLECTIONS Stephin MerrittexperimentalStrictly, experimental music is a style of composition in which the actual sound produced is beside the point. Historically, it was a genre lasting from August 29, 1952, the day of the premiere of John Cage’s 4’33” (the ‘silent’ piece), until the 1974 publication of Michael Nyman’s book Experimental Music: Cage and Beyond, which negated the genre by defining its limits.

Unless……We Get A Little Crazy

Miracles will happen
As we speak
But we’re never
Gonna survive …unless
We get a little crazy-
Crazy- Seal

 

Hawks  arrive unannounced… my lived long life.  When three show up, two Harlan’s and a Red tailed on one morning walk, chances are they arrive  and bestow with a screech, glide,  and potent stare,…. a feeling of optimism, encouragement, wonderment, and change, …which I am pleased to share a glimpse of with you. A most excellent way to begin the day.

 

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In response to WordPress Photo Challenge: Peek to show you a peek this week of what I see and am able to capture on the camera.

Oxford American’s Writer’s Thesaurus;

PEEK- noun: a peek at the map: secret look, sly look, stealthy look, sneaky look, peep, glance, glimpse, hurried/quick look; informal gander, squint.

Wishing each and everyone a most safe and peaceful weekend.