Dreaming imaginary Prague, reposted

Dreaming imaginary Prague

 I have never been to Prague, except in daydreams…
but my impressionable mind is easily led
into the magical world of zithers and Gypsies,
of violins singing and wailing in ageless melodies…
music of joy and abandon…or sadness and melancholy.

Put on your hat, my girl, and come along with me…
We will trip the light fantastic (or is it a Fandango?)
whirling, twirling and dancing …and laughing at nothing
as our echoing soles  click and ring among  the cobblestones…
back to the days of fancy and intrigue.

Halcyon days of exquisite youth and passion for it all–
sordid or glorious, respectable or ridiculous–
days when common sense stayed at home amid the quiet
and comfortable over-stuffed chairs…and crackling radio static
never quite able to drown out the strains of an orchestral tune.

Prickles of goose bumps remind of running with n’er-do-wells
and bad influences…those mysterious, exciting  ones that
never existed, masquerading as “ladies” and “gentlemen,”
life’s forbidden (or at least frowned upon) adventures
among the brilliantly dark recesses of shadowy corners.

The mere mention of Prague always brings unseen wonders–
half-vision, half-dream.      There are Ladies in satiny dresses
and impossible shoes…. dancing away the nights, until dawn.
They sway with the music of instruments with no names,
enticing dangerously handsome partners with unknown designs.

But I digress, as is my wont…
the thoughts of romance and mystery subside–
old Prague returns to an idea that lives on
for dreamers…and poets.

©Sometimes, 2016

a glimpse of life…passing by (Daily Post Entry: Blur)

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/out-of-focus/”>Focus</a&gt;

village blur a glimpse of life.JPG

above is a shot taken years ago, in early 1980s, through the window of a van traveling at high speed along a rural road in Yucatan, near the archeological site of Chichén Itza, Mexico.     At first glance it is just a ruined photo, which is often what an amateur photographer gets when shooting on-the-fly from a grimy vehicle window, speeding down a road.    However, on close inspection, the camera apparently focused automatically on the village scene in a clearing beyond the surrounding jungle and captured this candid scene.   (Cropped close-up image below.)   Image by Robert Dreger, ©Sometimes 2017.

village-blur-a-glimpse-of-life-e1497725886780 CROP

 

 

Airport traffic

jet trails 4 w red

Afternoon traffic from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.     Jet trails against picturesque cloud cover.   We always have a ring side seat on airport activity.   These photos are facing southeast.    ©Sometimes,2017)

 

jet trails2

Voyager 2’s Golden Record… intercepted? or still out there?

For no apparent reason this morning I thought about the space capsule that went zooming out beyond our Solar System on June 16, 1977.      I have known about the “Golden Record” containing various information about Earth that space aliens might be interested in, assuming that they someday “find” the capsule floating around out there and delve into our characteristics.      The NASA Space Agency facility in Cleveland, Ohio used to be open to the public, and I visited a couple of times on field trips with Girl Scouts or school class groups.     I was especially impressed with two features…although there was an endless wealth of exhibits: our Sun, in an animated flaming ball complete with sun flares and other details; and the Golden Record on Voyager 2.

The thing that impressed me the most was that the United States’ choice of popular music at the time was Chuck Berry’s Johnny B. Goode, also famous as featured at the “Under the Sea” high school dance, in the movie Back to the Future.      Not sure I ever knew much more detail, except that the compilers had included some Bach and Beethoven, chosen by some of the more grown up nations.

Included here is the Wikipedia link for those of us who would like either a refresher course in Voyager 2, or a deeper look into the contents of the Golden Record….which is, I believe, literally a well, golden…record.      There are all kinds of information about various countries of Earth, animals, humans (although NASA apparently got some flack about naked human pictures, so they used silhouettes.)    I love that there is a recording of authentic Navajo Chants, and an hour-long recording of someone’s brain waves thinking about “earth-things” including thoughts of love.  Also, the sounds of thunder and rain, birds, animals, and motor vehicles…uh, wind and thunder maybe, but a John Deere tractor?   (They didn’t specify the brand, that’s just me.)   Other humanoid species probably would identify with Earth nature sounds…but a rumbling bulldozer or whatever is a bit of a stretch.

This Wikipedia site is really good…pictures and easy-to-follow charts and symbols.    Here’s the link:     https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contents_of_the_Voyager_Golden_Record

 

 

Teotihuacan 1996 revisited

Wow!   Two promises in two days….      I checked out my Digital Film/Slide Projector for my pal Judy Dykstra/Brown over at Lifelessons, AND in the same swell swoop…or is it fell swoop?… found some of my ancient slides of ancient archeological sites as I had promised my buddy BadFish!

I will do a proper post about these pyramids  soon, right now the goal is to show that my old slides really can be  resurrected and restored by even ME…klutz that I can be even after thirty-some years of computer-practice.

The purpose of this post is to show the results of my test of my scanner converter…yes it works, and yes I love it!    It took me about four times longer than it should have, and I had a LOT of hassle getting the photos into the post.

No, that is not me up on that pyramid…no way.   It may or may not be my late husband, who went up part way.

These shots were taken in 1996 at the Teotihuacan archeological site near Mexico City.  This particular occasion marked the last time Bob and I went to Mexico together, although I made several more trips by myself.

These are not Aztec pyramids, but were constructed by the Teotihuacanos, who predated the Aztecs by centuries.    The city was a hub of commerce and trade that extended even down into what is now Guatemala.   National Geographic did a great magazine issue featuring this fascinating city.

There are hundreds and hundreds of photos of the pyramids.       https://www.bing.com/images/search?q=teotihuacan+pyramids&FORM=IARRTH&ufn=teotihuacan&stid=1a1f9c4b-ec11-aeee-db7b-def752eff0af&cbn=EntityAnswer&cbi=0&FORM=IARRTHds   I’ll check it.   I just googled Teotihuacan pyramids and got it.

OH yes!  the link works…many of the photos I looked at on the site have been taken much more recently.  There has been on-going reconstruction work at many of the Mexican sites for many years.

All photos were by Robert Dreger, 1996.   © Sometimes, 2017

pict0021
The Pyramid of the  Moon photo © Sometimes, 2017
pict0001
The much larger Pyramid of the Sun.
pict0017
A partially reconstructed Administration or residential Building.

Mercado Flores Pantleon Re-Blogged

Here is a great treat! I found this site this morning and just had to browse the marvelous photos. This post is of a flower market in Guadalajara, Mexico. I do love Mexico and all things Mexican—so I’m happy to look around. These photos are great! Be sure to click on one of the photos so as to get the slide show—and be prepared to say WOW!!! Thanks to the blogger for permission to repost…

Guadalajara en Fotos

This is the biggest flower market in Guadalajara, and the best place to go on Valentines day.  It is across the street from the Cemetary, so people can buy flowers for the departed.  It has stores that face the street Federalismo, and more and more stores as you walk a block behind the storefronts.  My favorite part is the open air Flower Market and watching the trucks unload flowers in bulk.

View original post

travel tales

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2015/01/01/1355081/-Why-Airlines-Collude-To-Make-Flying-As-Miserable-As-Possible/

Here is a story about just how terrible the experience of flying has become.    Once…not too long ago, the process of taking an air trip from a major airport, on a major airline, was one of life’s pleasures for those who could afford it…and that was a pretty broad segment of the population in the United States.

Not to belabor the fond clichés of those of us who remember the dressing-up in “air travel outfits” in order to look good while strolling the airport terminal, and creating a “Wow!” factor appearance for emerging from the tunnel into the waiting area–where sizeable groups of people awaiting the arrival of air-travelers.   Then each little group would walk off down the concourse  sharing snippets of exciting conversation about the flight.   “Man, the sun is shining back in Albuquerque!”   “Wow!–look at all the snow!”  and “It was so rough that I really thought we were going down…”

Here’s the thing that has always griped me.   Why don’t we have a decent cross country train system, like Europe and Mexico, Japan, the United Kingdom…etcetera,   One of my most wistful dreams has always been about traveling on a glamorous  fast-moving train, sipping fine wine in the club-car (my ideal of glamour) and watching scenery flash by.     Yes, I know–a bit exotic, but hey–that’s me.  And yes, I also know about Amtrack–which I hear is great once past Chicago or so, heading West.

Of course I DO know the reason we don’t have a cross-country railway system…and between you and me that is easy: the auto industry.  Our society and economy has always been about making cars, advertising cars so that everyone must have at least one…and except for the East coast cities where there IS a decent train system (as far as I know,) efforts at installing  North-South Corridor high-speed systems have been suppressed.     At least that is the case here in Ohio.

I admit that my experience with train travel has been limited, consisting of a trip to California from Ohio when I was five-years -old; travel from Bremerhaven, Germany to Frankfurt in 1955 (courtesy of the U.S. Army); at least one ride to and from Boston when my son lived in Massachusetts.   I think that is all..not counting some rapid-transit travel in Cleveland back in my commuting days, and assorted tourist travel in New York City, London, Mexico City and Quebec…. oh–and in New Orleans, the trolly from the city out to the university.

 

A Pleasant Chat With Myself …with no regrets

This post was first published October 16, 2015 here in SOMETIMES.

SOMETIMES

Writing 201, poetry: Pleasure, Sonnet, Apostrophe
(not that kind of apostrophe…)

                     Say What, SELF?

Talking to Myself is something I do
Listing accomplishments, dreams, and regrets.
Bragging to Self is always permitted
as long as the truth is told.

But sometimes I resent what SELF has to say
in questioning and doubting and high-handed
pouting over things that
I never got to do.

Travel might have been, should have been, would have been
had the opportunity and ability been present
much sooner in life than it was..

What’s that you say, Self?–
I didn’t apply myself?
I wasted much of the time of my life
on the mundane and unnecessary (in the grand scheme)
pursuits such as housework and not
enough adventure and travel?

Well that’s not the case!  I hasten to say–
I’m not indignant, I just need to explain.
My years as a gadabout (now I only…

View original post 371 more words

Lake Voyage

What I remember
of that day in September
is the Canadian shore line
drifting away to the North.

The warm sun and the rafters
of the ferry as it lumbered
southward, plying the waters,
widening the distance encumbered.

Green and gold on the tree line,
still shades of autumn, the hint
of  coming winter still vague.
The horn sounded farewell as it widened the wake,
and set off on its great voyage across the lake.

©Sometimes, 2016

New Years Eve

Sauerkraut balls, bubbly champagne, and midnight kisses notwithstanding, the long-awaited New Year’s Eve Date was highly over-rated.

From about the age of fourteen the push was on, as magazines, movies, television, newspapers…all extolled the glamour and excitement of the parties and celebrations of New Year’s Eve.

There were two major criteria for a stereotypical New Year’s Eve to be officially successful: the Magic Age of Twenty One–and A DATE.

Alas…for various obvious reasons, my ideal perfect date, involving a handsome escort–required to be old enough to gain admittance to a gala ballroom in a romantic city, and be of sufficient financial resources to pay for the evening revelry–was always just beyond my reach.    (OK, way beyond…but this is my tale and I’m sticking to it.)

My actual first legal-age New Years Eve was in 1955…a week after my arrival in Germany to join my army husband.   We had not yet moved into the official US Army living quarters, which were still under actual construction, and were living in a small German-owned apartment.     New Year’s Day 1956 marked the first day of the official German sovereignty return, following World War II.

There was no gala celebration, no fabulous ballroom,  no champagne…nothing any where similar to the stereotypical New Year’s Eve bashes promoted by the fancy magazines.   Actually it didn’t even enter my mind that I had finally achieved the Magic Age of 21 and, although I did have a handsome husband…he was disinclined to partying on the German economy.    We MAY have attended a movie on the military base.

The following year on the Eve of 1957, we did celebrate the occasion with friends from downstairs…and we all played Pinochle.  This was fun, but not really a special celebration…we always played card games, Pinochle or Canasta, for example…or board games like Scrabble or Monopoly.   Besides, I was pregnant, so there went the fancy ballgown and dance shoes, any extravagant evenings out on the town.

…fast forward about thirty years…

After remarriage, we did do some reveling on New Year’s Eves…small parties among a small group of friends, mostly laughing and telling jokes, …  or attending such as local Civic Balls (more fun than it sounds) and dances…or a Game Night….  held in a rental hall somewhere in town.

A few New Year’s Eves we were in Mexico, or Portugal, or Arizona or somewhere else.   Once we were invited to a large private party in Mexico City…that was fun.   We were in Lisbon at the time that the US was involved in invading Panama, which did not make us popular with the Portuguese…at least I felt a chill from the locals, and a kind man in a pub invited us to sit at his table and he told us that we (Americans) were sort of shunned.

Then we just stayed home on New Year’s Eve…maybe went out to dinner and then sat around listening to music and having snacks and red wine, or maybe champagne…     At this point I usually declined sitting up to watch the “ball drop” in New York City.   The New Year did not depend on my attention to become active.

So I never did achieve my dream of the Perfect New Year’s Eve date.   No gala extravaganzas…no dancing like Ginger Rogers in a glittering flowing gown… but then I have always been something of a Dreamer, and although being a Dancer was high on my things I wanted to do when I grew up…my absolute lack of rhythm or dance poise completely dashed that aspiration.   Besides, I think Ginger Rogers had red hair….

Happy New Year 2016 everyone!!!