Images tagged "sunflower"

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  1. susan scott says:

    all these different varieties of oranges! Like the colour, there are many shades. It’s a colour I like, though many cannot bear it. We have many varieties here in SA too, though I’ll be hard pressed to name them. If they look good I’ll buy. Satsumas I know .. mandarins/tangerines too. I juice, peel, add to fruit salad, and a little orange juice added to salad dressing lifts the dressing significantly ..
    Thanks Carol, educational as Gwynn says 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Susan, for coming by and for being a loyal reader. Yes, I have eaten oranges from South Africa — Minneolas, in particular. They are very good, and I welcome them here, since your season is the opposite of ours: I can enjoy Minneolas and other orange varieties year round. Too, I believe you have a particular variety of black grapes that are delicious, and I always try to find them during their season. Great idea for adding a little orange juice to salad dressing. Must try. I like a salad for dinner with nice glass of wine.

  2. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Thanks for the education. The oranges that have reached us this year have not been very sweet or easy to peel. I’ll stick with eating Honeycrisp apples – YUMMM!

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Gwynn, for being so loyal and coming by. This post was originally intended for the Hip Senior Magazine November issue, submitted to follow up on my general citrus story in the October issue, but the editor never published the oranges story. Since at the end of the citrus story, I promised to follow up with an oranges story, I published it here. Pressing ahead, I don’t mind mixing apples and oranges, and those Honeycrisps are sweet, crispy and juicy. I love the Winesaps and the Pippins, although I can’t find Pippins here in Delaware, only in California.

  3. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Boy, history sure does repeat itself. Too bad we don’t pay attention to what happened in the past so we don’t trip over our own feet and fall into the past.

    • sammozart says:

      Well said, Gwynn. Thanks. Thanks for coming by a second time and commenting again. Sorry the place got so messy. Moriarty’s been on vacation.

  4. susan scott says:

    Those were the days my friend, we thought they’d never end – and they don’t do they as you’ve shown so well by your walk among the autumn leaves and take in the beautiful surroundings. Lovely piece thank you, beautifully written as always 🙂
    This morning I was looking at the clouds from my balcony – they were unusual and very beautiful. The one looked liked a dove, wings and all … Neil took up a scrap of paper and made a very simple drawing of it.

    • sammozart says:

      The wings of a dove, Susan. It’s good to enjoy the small things, nature’s gifts to us. A robin built a nest in the transom windowsill above my front door. I regard this as a sign of good fortune. She comes every year, but I guess the eggs aren’t fertilized, because I haven’t seen chicks. She gets mad, though, when I step outside to enjoy the camels.

      “Those Were the Days,” one of my favorite songs. The older I get, the more nostalgic I get — not unusual, I suppose. But, with our quarantine, social distancing and mask wearing, it seems remembering days gone by are one way out.

      Thank you, as always, for coming by. I do enjoy your visits, and am hoping, now that my retail store work hours have been cut, to get back to visiting your blog and others, just focusing more on my writing.

      S.

  5. sammozart says:

    Thanks, Gwynn. And, I just found a photo of my uncle and me on the beach in Ocean City, N.J., when I was 16, the age my granddaughter Sophia just turned. My uncle and I loved surfing the waves. And when I came to Calif., I surfed the waves in Hermosa with my four-year-old daughter, Kellie, standing on surf’s edge cheering, “Do it again, Mom! Do it again!” There’s nothing more refreshing than getting hit on the back of the neck by a cold wave.

    Yes, one of the reasons I posted this piece was to take our minds off isolation and social distancing and this whole surreality. I thank your great grandfather a thousand times for working to save Hetch Hetchy, Yosemite Valley’s twin. I’ve read now that the water in that reservoir is no longer needed. I wish they’d empty that valley. Yosemite is heaven on earth. So would be Hetch Hetchy, and heaven knows we need these heavens on earth more than ever these days.

    S.

  6. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Remembering past special times is a way of relieving the stress of being told to isolate and social distance. For me, I remember the joy of watching for a large wave that I can flatten my body onto and soar into the beach on it as I listen to the roar of the surf and the scream of the seagulls as I feel the warmth of the sun on my back. It is such a relaxing feeling. Enjoy your hike, and if you are in the Hetch-Hetchy area of California say a special prayer to my Great Grandfather for preserving that area. Thanks for the memories!!

  7. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Sam, you definitely entertain in style. You need to hide a bottle of the Pinot Grigio under your side of the table so that Moriarty doesn’t drink your share of the wine. Now, I hope you are at least sitting six feet apart and wearing your masks and gloves. Stay safe and healthy!

    • sammozart says:

      The round table’s pretty big, Gwynn, so, sitting opposite each other, we were nearly six feet apart. I like your idea of hiding a wine bottle under my side of the table, since Moriarty pours himself a full glass, guzzles it and only pours me a splash. I’d like to think the alcohol in the wine would keep us healthy, but should it comprise the requisite 60 or 70 percent, we’d both be under the table forthwith. Thanks for coming by, Gwynn. A delight to hear from you. You stay well, too.

  8. susan scott says:

    This was a delight Carol, thanks so much! Off into the stratosphere I was swept, where the atmosphere kept me aloft for a while. Such lovely writing thank you!

    I shared your offer of your books for free on FB … a very generous gift.

    Who will you be eating easter eggs with? Is Moriarty around for that? Any camels in sight?

    • sammozart says:

      Definitely the camels are in sight, habitually, Susan. Don’t know what I’ll do on Easter. Hadn’t thought of it. The retail store where I work is giving us the day off — only due to COVID-19. Otherwise, I’ve been working and haven’t thought much about Easter. It’ll just be a quiet day off, I think. I’m trying to catch up on my writing; I’ve gotten so far behind with all else I’ve had to do. I’m hoping to get caught up on my blog reading, too. It is so good to hear from you. I miss all my writer/blogger friends, and you are a special one. Thanks for coming by. Thank you for sharing my book offer. The more people who download my book, the higher I rise in the Amazon ratings. If I rise high enough, Amazon will promote my books. I think I’m a long way from that, though, but every little bit helps.

  9. Robert Price says:

    Sam,

    You had me at round table, you illuminated me with swaths of yellow sunbeams, Moriarty quenched my thirst with Pinot Grigio, you tickled my fancy with Jane Austen’s snickering, Wolfgang’s sniggering and Schubert wiping his tears of mirth from the lenses of his glasses and with Jefferson’s blank stare. My appetite was wetted with the chips and hummus, macaroni and cheese and popcorn. I was reminded of a friend who once exclaimed, “ These wine bottles must have holes in the bottoms!” I was swept away to Paris, off to the ballet and seated by a quiet poet while peeped at by another not so quiet poet, all the while, contemplating how did we get here? Life is short and so much has happened. Doris and David will tell you, if Charlie will let them talk. I wish you good ‘morrow.

    Ever,
    R.

    • sammozart says:

      Well said, R. And, you’re lucky Moriarty quenched your thirst with the Pinot Grigio, for he made himself such a large second pour and then drizzled such a small splash into mine, I thought indeed the bottle had a hole in the bottom. I’d kind of like to hear from Doris and David. I think Doris has said something; I’m not sure about David. As for Thomas Jefferson, I hear he’s quarantined himself in the Blue Ridge somewhere, writing a blog, composing, out of a decent respect to the opinions of mankind (rare these days), a declaration about the current Course of human events.

      S.

  10. Thank you for sharing this story and a little about your life and what you’ve experienced. It took months to get here, but I found your blog today as I cleared out old email that I’d neglected. Blessed Solstice to you and may there be many new stories.

  11. susan scott says:

    This ode to snow is so lovely Samantha thank you … beautifully written and evocative of its magic.

  12. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Boy, when we first moved to California from Washington, we moved out in the desert. Believe me, I felt like those onions and taters, being fried. Now, that I’m back in Washington, the summers have become warmer and more humid, so I plant myself in front of our fan. I’m definitely not a senior who loves walking around in the heat. I need my walk in the early morning at the waterfront when I have a cool breeze. Ahhh! Fun memories.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you for stopping by my virtual venue on your walk, Gwynn. As always, good to hear from you. Here on the East Coast this summer it’s been frying pan hot, temps to 100 and high humidity. I have to get rides to work. That half mile walk gives me heat exhaustion on those days. Even our store, where I work, is hot. We have a big fan that blows on us when we’re cashiering. It never used to be that hot here, that hot for such an extended period of weeks. Do take care. 🙂

  13. susan scott says:

    As if they were rummaging for a socks! That’s a lovely description! I remember a previous post in where you said you were at the checkout counter weighing strawberries and the customers –

    This is a delightful tale thanks Carol ..

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, it is funny, Susan. I have the pleasure of observing the amazing and absurd human actions. I’m always like, “Really? You’re doing that?” Great grist for storytelling and humor — and laughing at ourselves, as well. Thank you for stopping by and commenting, as always.

  14. Gwynn Rogers says:

    We customers sure can be picky! 😉 I always check that the baskets don’t have rotten or over ripe strawberries or whatever fruit I’m checking out!

    • sammozart says:

      And, I’m one of those customers, Gwynn. Friends don’t enjoy shopping with me, because it takes me a while to weigh and balance and sniff just the perfect piece of produce having just the right color and feel to the touch.

      Thanks for stopping in and checking out this latest story I’ve harvested.

  15. Susan Scott says:

    So enjoyed this Carolina! Thank you! I look forward to the book – with recipes!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Susan. I’m looking forward to getting this book on the market. And, maybe when you’re over this way again sometime, we can sample some of those recipes. So glad you came by, as always.

  16. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Boy, I’m amazed strawberry plants had to be plowed under each year. What a project! Farming definitely is not an easy job. Great descriptions! I’m with Hilary as I can’t believe that someone would lean on strawberries. Maybe she was hoping that you would give them to her for free!

    • sammozart says:

      You nailed it, Gwynn: it’s amazing, the customers’ finagling to get something for free, or even for just 50 cents off. In this woman’s case, I think she was just unaware. I did love those strawberries, though, on that farm — my mother and I both enjoyed picking them. They were the Camarosa variety, grown in California — big, firm, juicy and sweet. Now I’m hungry. Thanks for coming by my blog. So good to hear from you. I have been in such a tunnel lately.

  17. Hilary says:

    Well done Sam – farm work is always hard … but the benefits are fresh air and good fresh fruit or veg … good to read one of the stories here … and having your elbows in punnets of strawberries is just plain stupid … I can quite see you’d need to extract them … cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Hilary, I did enjoy the farm. I stayed in Florida six years longer than I had intended, just because of it, seven years total. Re the elbows in the strawberry punnets, it’s amazing what people do. I work in a discount retail store now, and it’s incredible. I could write a tome about customers’ actions. But, I’ll let my “Funny Farm Stories” speak for both. Thanks for coming by and being a loyal reader. I do love hearing from you. Cheers, Sam.

  18. susan scott says:

    This is a lovely meditation Sam thank you! I love how you say the snowflakes have a mission when they fall out of the sky – it’s a very evocative image.

    Monday 11th Feb was my younger son’s birthday so it’s pleasing to me that he shares your father’s birthday. It’s also the day that Mr. Mandela was released from prison 29 years ago …

    • sammozart says:

      Dear Susan, I apologize for the long delay in replying to your most welcome comment on my snowflake meditation. I like your saying that. It is a meditation, after all. Interesting, our connections — Davy’s b’day is my father’s and your b’day is my maternal grandmother’s. My father often said that he was born on about the same day as the great men — Abraham Lincoln (Feb. 12), George Washington (Feb. 22), and now the day Nelson Mandela was released from prison — but, of course.

  19. Hilary says:

    Hi Sam – I’ve found it almost always snowed on my birthday Jan 13th … so the memories you have of your father’s birthday, almost twinned with yours on the 9th … we have lots of family birthdays in February … so can relate.

    Snowflakes are amazing – while the path it leaves fills all those gaps before melting away … delightful story – cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Dear Hilary — I have been remiss on replying to much hoped for comments on my own website. I do apologize. While trying to keep up with life and my day job, time melts away. I’m so glad you came by. Cheers. –Sam

  20. susan says:

    Truly beautiful writing Samantha thank you. ” True, I lay in wait, ready to pounce on nouns, verbs, images, phrases to combine and devour in whole stories..,” this you do in spades – and more. Life is there even if looking into the abyss or the void…

    • sammozart says:

      True, Susan. Thank you for your kind words and for being such a loyal friend and follower. It means a lot to me.

      –Samantha

  21. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Your descriptive memories are so fun to read. I feel that I’m right there with you and the magic of your words massage my heart. What lovely memories! I hope the Autumn leaves are brightening up your weekend. Enjoy your day off!

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, the day off was welcome and serene, Gwynn. Thank you for your compliments on my writing. My aim is to make you feel like you are right here w/me, so I’m glad I succeeded. Next time I’ll provide umbrellas so you don’t get too wet in the mist and the rain. Thank you for being a loyal friend and follower. It means a lot to me.

  22. susan scott says:

    I remember this story and am struck again by its poetic beauty Samantha, thank you. Bless those phantoms that remind us to be good stewards. Yesterday, the owl box that had been appropriated by bees over the last several years, fell out of the tree. The bee man came and gave them a new home which they settled into after some hours and after their agitation. We were out last night and upon arriving home and turning into the garage, an owl flew in front of us. It must have been on the wall … so, bees and owls … within a space of some hours …

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Susan, for your kind words. And, bees and owls — definitely represent a blessing, a protection, for you. They are watching over you with their tacit wisdom. On rare occasions, I’ll be sitting on my front porch at night, watching the camels, when I’ll look up and there’s a barred owl sitting silently on the wire. I am honored (OK, even though it may be looking for rabbits). 🙂

      Your visits here are always a pleasure, Susan. Thanks!

  23. Gwynn Rogers says:

    You have delightful and wise mentors, plus a loving spirit family. It is hard to believe that this time was so long ago. Life definitely provides much inspiration. You write a lovely story. Hugs to you and Moriarty!

    • sammozart says:

      Moriarty’s blushing, Gwynn. He likes the hug.

      I, too, am amazed at how much time has gone by since I encountered Moriarty in the cupola of my blog. Seems like just last month. Yes, I am so fortunate to have a loving spiritual family, wise mentors, and my angels around me. You are among them, Gwynn. Thanks for coming by and rereading my story.

      Hugs to you, too. ❤️

  24. Hi Sam – honestly I don’t know how people can be so unfair to the growers/ small farmers … but yes it happens and then the habit gets passed down and is worse …

    I’m amazed to read that the strawberry season in Florida has already finished now … interesting to know – cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — I’m amazed that I missed your comment somehow. As for people being unfair, I believe that’s due to the age-old product of the human condition. I work at a discount store now, and while many of our customers are great, there is that element who can be just horrid — insensitive and cruel. My perspective is that these days there’s way too much poverty and suffering out there.

      Re Florida strawberries, they have to be replanted every year, because it’s too hot and humid in the summer for them to survive. For that reason, most Florida crops don’t grow in the summer.

      I do apologize for my late reply here. You are welcome here no matter the season.

      Cheers, Samantha/Carol

      • No worries … these things happen – and you’re busy et al … I suddenly find comments – that I must have seen come through – but never get back, til way later, to acknowledge …

        Our fruits and veg are just coming through now … so should be a delicious time – cheers Hilary

  25. susan scott says:

    oh! now you’ve got me drooling! Cream puffs and strawberries – and cherries thrown into the mix? Thanks Carolina Gringo aka Samantha … much enjoyed. Good images in mind – also, cleverly not letting the customer get away with overloading!

    • sammozart says:

      Has me drooling, too, Susan. Our Florida strawberry season has just ended here. They ship the berries north, so we can buy them in our stores in Delaware and enjoy them. I used to make strawberry shortcake for my mother and me topped with the heavy cream I bought in the store and whipped. Yum.

      These strawberry dealings with the customers occurred 20 years ago. And, as I reread this story for publishing, I wondered if I’d react the same now. I am more subdued and customers are way too sensitive these days.

      Thanks for coming by and commenting. I will be over to your site soon to catch up on your A-Zs.

  26. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Ah-ha!! NOW I know how to get into your blog to read it. Your new blog announcement threw me for a loss. I was wondering if you were going to compete in the A to Z Challenge this year, but I see you are not… me neither. However, miracles do happen as I too posted on my blog today. I haven’t posted in some time. I enjoyed your story.

    • sammozart says:

      Happy you found my post, Gwynn. You can sign up on my website to receive email notifications of my new posts; then, you’ll always find them. Just fill in your email address in the box on the right sidebar here (where it says “Enter your email address,” “Subscribe”).

      I saw you have published a post, also. Glad to see you’re writing. I always enjoy your posts and will be over to visit you soon. I look forward to reading it. No A-Zs this year for me; too much else going on, as with you, too, I’m sure.

      I’m happy you came by and commented, Gwynn. Thank you!

  27. Robert Price says:

    While rummaging through your writing the re-sourcing, arranging, rearranging and hoarding of strawberries in your Funny Farm Story conjured a new character’s name for the antagonist in my latest SoFlo crime, murder mystery, romance, geopolitical triller, novel — Constance Greed.

    Enjoyed this story, I pictured strawberries flittering from towered baskets skittering all over the floor of the the farm stand from the strawberry basket display table all the way to the cashier.

    Looking forward to your next post.

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      Well, actually it was the chain of cherry stems that flittered and littered the floor in front of my checkout counter, R, from customers helping themselves to samples of cherries displayed for sale in quart cartons on my counter.

      Thanks for your comment, the visual and the apropos character name.

      S.

  28. susan scott says:

    The customer is not always right as fully evidenced by this post Samantha! Is this yours or Carolina Gringo’s story? I think it is yours? As you say people came back year after year in appreciation of the lovely produce …

    • sammozart says:

      I know who wrote this story can be confusing, Susan. To simplify, hopefully, when I worked at the farm market, my Mexican coworkers called me Carolina, rather than simply Carol. And, city slicker that I am, I was a gringo on that farm. So, I called myself Carolina Gringo, as I in other writing circumstances and for the purposes of this blog, am Samantha Mozart. So, stories within stories, as it were, Samantha Mozart is composing these stories as told to her from Carolina Gringo’s experiences. I hope this makes sense. I debated whether to approach the storytelling this way, but it’s fun, and if J.K. Rowling can use numerous noms de plume, I figured so can I. Thank you for coming by, as always. 🙂

  29. Hi Sam – I can believe that happening … people are so unfair – probably not Highpockets – he just wasn’t quite right … but others who don’t appreciate the work that’s gone into producing fresh produce – I think I’d have taken Highpockets down to pick his own … but the others … I’d be grateful if they never turned up again – cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — Highpockets provided a source of amusement for us (when he wasn’t in the store), and, yes, there were others who didn’t appreciate the work, and I have stories about them. Highpockets could have picked his own strawberries, but I don’t recall that he ever did. We didn’t offer U-pic melons, though. Most of the customers were wonderful, thankfully — gave me recipes accompanied by samples. They’d return year after year. I enjoyed hearing about their lives. It was fun. And, thank you for returning here. 🙂 Cheers! Sam.

      • Hi Sam – no I guessed that … but if one took him down to pick his own melon once … then he couldn’t return it! Could he as he’d picked and selected it … but sounds like you had a wonderful experience working there though … cheers Hilary

  30. Robert Price says:

    Yes, sometimes you must tell them to get out and stay out.

    R.

  31. Journaleuse says:

    Thank you so very much!!

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks for coming by, Journaleuse. I visited your website, and you have some interesting stories (I know little French, but I got the gist). As a journalist myself, I appreciate your work. I hope you will return.

  32. Hi Samantha – these will be so interesting and fun to read … looking forward to more … life from the fields … cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Hilary. My time in Florida was fun with plenty of novel and amusing experiences. “Life from the fields” — I like that. At the farm stand that’s what it was, for me and for my Mexican coworkers. It wasn’t only vegetables that arose from the fields, but also a variety of critters, furry, winged and slithery. I enjoyed meeting people from all over the world — Lithuania, Russia, Germany, France, Spain, England, French and English Canadians and the Italians from New York who bought the cases of colorful Cubanelle peppers. Cheers!

  33. susan scott says:

    I look forward to more of these stories! They’re very alive not only for the writing; also for the snakes and worms and mosquitoes ..

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Susan. I will post more, doubtless competing for attention with the A-Z readership among my followers. Yes, my experiences in Florida were alive, both in high season with the snowbirds and off season with the critters.

  34. Robert Price says:

    Love this!!! Glad I took a break from a near insane work load. You, with your stories to tell, may have restored my sanity. Thank you.

    R.

  35. I love snow, but it seems like it’s becoming more and more rare where I am in Sweden, if you can believe it. Your post almost reads like a prayer for me, one that I can whisper to myself in the hopes of seeing more snow.

    • sammozart says:

      I’ll send you some snow, Sara. 😉 Temps have been below freezing here in Delaware, until yesterday, for two weeks. Our two or three inches of snow didn’t melt. People’s pipes froze and broke. I could use some advice on how to live in a cold climate (especially after living 30 years in Redondo Bch., where it was 72 and sunny year round). Ehh. But, truly, the snow is beautiful. I love watching it fall, so serene. I believe it is also good for my writing when I’m kept inside and at my computer on a snowy day.

      So glad you came by. Good hearing from you.

      • We finally have some snow here, so your sending snow must have worked! 😉 I don’t really have any advice for cold living other than dress warmly! I believe there’s a saying here in Sweden to the effect of, “There’s no such thing as bad weather.” Meaning, when properly dressed, one can withstand whatever the weather decides to do. Obviously, hurricanes aren’t a problem here, heh.

        • sammozart says:

          Re your advice for cold living, I do have a jacket that’s amazing warm and I do dress in layers; yet, after two weeks of below freezing temps, that was enough for me. The hardest part is heating my house. It’s a Victorian, not a big one, but uses heating oil and that’s expensive. That’s when I want to go home to SoCal, to Redondo, where it’s 72 and sunny year round. Yes, we do have to be concerned about the occasional hurricane here in Delaware, and a month or so ago we even had an earthquake — 4.2, so just a brief little jolt, but most unusual for this region — just a sort of California memento, I guess.

    • sammozart says:

      How sweet, Sara. Thank you. I’m glad you have snow now. It’s snowing here today, flurries, ground too warm for it to lay, but it’s nice to watch the flakes dance on the wind. 🙂

  36. Hilary says:

    Hi Sam – I thought you were in Sweden … but having looked at the Opera House site – I see not. There was a lot of snow on the east coast and I saw they had snow in Europe … being here now – it’s on the mountains (very little here in Vancouver Island) … I await a first proper fall.

    What a wonderful place to work … cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — Yes, I do have a wonderful place to work — at my window watching snowfall in the winter and at other seasons the North American dogwood outside this same window give birth to blossoms deep and white as snow, then green leaf, then red berries for the migrating birds to gorge on, and then the leaves turn vermillion before they fall.

      Normally we don’t have that much snow here in the Mid-Atlantic states — some winters it gets deep once or twice, most winters some dustings and a few six inchers.

      You are on Vancouver Island? When did that happen? How did I miss that move? I thought you were in England. I lived in Southern California for 30 years, so can appreciate seeing the snow on the mountains. It is beautiful. Cheers and Merry Christmas!

  37. Beautiful. There is nothing like soft, beautiful snow falling from the sky. The quietude all around, the joy. You describe the snowflakes dance so well, I can visualize it.
    Some of my best childhood memories centered around those long-ago snowy days. I remember going out for a bit to play, but mostly watching it out the window, especially at night, when everything looked blue and felt perfect.
    Have a good time decorating, Samantha, and Merry Christmas!

    • sammozart says:

      I can just imagine the snow falling in Romania, Silvia. It must be beautiful, snowfall in that beautiful country. Well, I know you can go up to the mountains there in SoCal to experience the snow, as you have. I’ve experienced some magical moments up there and up in Mammoth. I love your image “watching it out the window, especially at night, when everything looked blue and felt perfect.”

      Peace to you and your family, and Merry Christmas!

  38. susan scott says:

    p.s. it was on my FB – and I checked that I din’t receive it via email … I thought I was subscribed to receive emails from schehezerade chronicles but apparently not, but now I AM … I entered into the subscribe …

  39. susan scott says:

    this is so lovely Samantha! Snowflakes with a mission! I agree with R that you’ve captured the magical essence of snow. I loved how you say about the activity that goes on while the snow falls softly.

    And those bells … whose sound captures a timelessness (even though you were almost lifted up off your feet – your angel wings helped you land softly).

    We seldom experience snow here where I live, though in other parts of SA they get their fair majestic share.

    Thank you, I loved this post. I almost lost it (your post) buried as it was under the snow but I’m glad I found it.

    • sammozart says:

      So kind of you to stop by and comment, Susan. You’re like one of those softly falling snowflakes, always thoughtful of others. I know what you mean about emails getting buried. It’s a constant with me. I have to dig out the special ones. And, hopefully, one of these days I’ll catch up. Thanks, too, for sharing the link to my post on your Facebook page. Much appreciated.

  40. Robert Price says:

    Dear Sam,

    You have magically captured the magical sense of snow. The insulation and quietness of snow warms and rouses my spirit, so does what you have written.

    Ever,

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      Dear R,

      Your magical comment insulates and warms me and rouses me to reply, thank you ever so much!

      Sam

  41. Gwynn says:

    Oh this is so lovely, Samantha. I felt that I was right there experiencing the snow with you. However, the good news is that I’m sitting here in the warmth of our apartment, not out wandering around in your snow. Enjoy.

    Have fun decorating for Christmas. I only have thrown out a couple of decorations, nothing exciting. I’m sending you the LOVE OF THE SEASON!!

    • sammozart says:

      I WAS out wandering around in the snowfall, Gwynn — to and from work. Nice, because it didn’t lay, except on the grass and tree limbs and they don’t require shoveling. My decorations will be much like yours this year. I did decorate the Opera House, though — eight of us decorated four trees, the balcony and hung a couple wreaths. I’m glad there were eight of us. A short video of our work is on the Smyrna (Del.) Opera House Facebook page. I’m so glad you came by and commented. Thank you. The love of the season to you, too. Wishing you glad tidings and great joy. <3

  42. A lovely piece. I could almost imagine being there. The amount of mosquitoes sounds absolutely mind-boggling.

    • sammozart says:

      Not in my wildest dreams could I have imagined so many mosquitoes, Sara. They certainly made their point, as it were, inspiring me to write about them and their habitat evoking such a strong sense of place, Everglades City.

      I’m so glad you stopped by, Sara. Thanks!

  43. Hi Samantha – oh yugh … them mozzies I do not like. I was squirming as you related your tale – but great read as I understood a bit more and had to look up where Everglades City is … learning a bit about the geography. Sadly devastated … but it will come around again. Good memories … bet you’re glad you didn’t take the job, adjust to the mozzies and were still there – Irma wasn’t very kind – thanks for this – Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      So glad to see you here, visiting my blog, Hilary — where I have provided a special netting protecting us from mosquitoes. I have never seen anything like those dense clouds of mosquitoes in Everglades City. Residents placed smudge pots and other devices outside their doors to dissuade the creatures, but they swarmed right inside, anyway.

      Florida and especially Everglades City possess a strong sense of place, whether or not one likes it there. Maybe it’s the humidity. It provides a great character for any story — such as Cornwall does — and an atmosphere conducive to writing. I did some of my best writing there, I think. But, yes, I am glad I didn’t take that newspaper job, and certainly glad I didn’t stay in Florida long enough to encounter Irma.

  44. susan scott says:

    This is a piece of pure and beautiful writing Samantha thank you. I was with you all the way which in my view is a mark of excellent writing. I almost saw Lauren Bacall and EH and definitely felt the dreaded mosquitoes – keep on thinking about those haunting and sliding memories from so long ago and bringing them to your readers. Thank you so much for the ride!

    • sammozart says:

      What a wonderful, encouraging comment, Susan. Thank you. This is one of my favorite pieces, which was born as an email on a stormy Florida afternoon, that I keep recycling. Sometimes I get nitpicky, thinking to change a line or two, but, then, let it go, and I’m glad I did. The piece also serves as a genesis for a romantic suspense novel, for which I have made extensive notes. One of these days, when my life falls better into place, I will complete it. Thanks for your constant support. It means a lot to me.

  45. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Wonderful memories, Samantha. Hopefully they rebuild in a positive way. Hurricane Irma has devastated SO MUCH! I hope Hurricane Jose is not as destructive.

    • sammozart says:

      I hope they are able to rebuild well, Gwynn. Actually, I am astonished there wasn’t more damage from such high winds. I cannot even imagine, nor do I want to. Forty mph winds around here blow siding off my house. José’s path is dizzying right now. Let’s hope he blows out to sea.

      Thanks for coming by and commenting. I plan to go over to your site and comment. Better late than rushed, but I do want to see what you wrote. I always enjoy your posts.

      –Samantha

  46. susan scott says:

    Lovely post Samantha! And so great it was read on stage – well done! Lovely memory of your brother saying ‘I’m not doing it’ – It sounds like a Darcy comment –

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Susan. I’m glad I got to know Jane Austen. She sets the example of great writing — and subtle wit. As for my brother, he hasn’t changed. He is an individual; feels no need to please others, whereas I’m the opposite. Thanks for taking the time to come by and read this post. 🙂

  47. Oh, Samantha, how lovely to read that your contribution to such literary gem was read on stage. Thank you for sharing. I think I’m going to scroll back up and read it again.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Silvia. The performance — and the rehearsals — were fun. I had never written a theater script before — except the one when I was 10, at which, with the audience (our family) seated, anticipating, my brother, onstage, said “I’m not doing it.” So, we never know where our writing may lead us and what long-held dreams may come to fruition.

      I’m hoping, too, that high school English teachers will find this script and use it in their English classes.

      Samantha/Carol

  48. Thank you. Your comments fill me with joy. And thank you, Carol.

  49. sammozart says:

    Silvia, I agree with Susan — that deeply thoughtful paragraph stands out. Ah, those days by the sea, on both the Atlantic and Pacific coasts of the United States. I have loved them so much, and I have many happy childhood memories of my days in the surf and sand.

    The Black Sea has long fascinated me, because I have read so much about it by great authors who wrote about it in fiction. I may never get to visit the Black Sea myself, but you have brought it to my shores in your writing. I feel as if I am there. Thank you!

    Carol/Samantha

  50. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Silvia, this memory is so descriptive and lovely. It so reminds me of the days I hung out at Lake Washington and then later the California beaches. I love the pound of the surf and the cry of the seagulls. Best, I LOVE the rocking of the surf as I floated amid the waves, and zoomed to shore on the crest of the wave. I LOVE this memory of yours. Thanks for sharing it.

  51. susan scott says:

    Thanks Sylvia for this perfectly enchanting story. I loved it – so evocative and image-filling. I’m excerpting this particular paragraph –

    ‘What starts as sensory and stimulation withdrawal turns into a heightened awareness of the elements. They listen to sounds the wind picks up from afar — broken sounds, but easily heard. To the lapping of the waves, the sea whispering its own language or that of creatures inhabiting its depths. Sitting on the beach for hours, they try to decide if the whistling sounds came from dolphins or some other fish. They laugh so much’.

  52. Hi Sylvia – childhood memories … they do come back to remind us of those times … sometimes with some prodding … but can see where you absorbed so much during that and presumably other holidays … and the Black Sea does connect to other parts of the world … loved reading this … and I love being near the sea – cheers Hilary

  53. susan scott says:

    I came across your post inadvertently Samantha – I could have missed it. I did not receive automatic notification of a new post. But so pleased to read this – and hope the upcoming (or already past) Smyrna event is/was a huge success! Croissants … who would have thought?

    • sammozart says:

      I don’t know what happens with these notifications, Susan, but you can re-enter your contact info in the “Subscribe” box in the right sidebar here on my site if you wish. It should reconnect you.

      Glad you came across this. This is one of the all-consuming projects I have been engaged with since January. The event will be on Sat. afternoon, June 3. We’re in rehearsals now — it’s Readers Theater, and I must say, we have two very fine women actors.

      Croissants — well, I don’t care what they would have thought, but I think our caterer’s chicken salad w/cranberries mini croissants must be much better than any cake Marie Antoinette could have envisioned. 🙂 And, we could not pull off this event without serving the caterer’s renowned brownies — nobody would come.

      Thanks for coming by and commenting, Susan. So thoughtful of you, as always.

  54. Hi Sam – well this enlightened me … particularly to the period she wrote in – and the other events that occurred and that were influencing Britain at this time … much was changing here and over on the continent and in the Americas. Also the availability of foods available … how times have changed … cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      So nice to see you here, Hilary. I consider yours quite a compliment, coming from a Brit. I found my researching and learning all this about Jane Austen and her contemporaries fascinatingly enlightening and that Lady Caroline Lamb (she must have been quite a character) and Lord Melbourne connect through from George III to Queen Victoria. I’m only just beginning to sort British history, and I like to find out who knew whom and draw parallels among multi-continental simultaneous historical events. I would have liked to have been up there on Lake Geneva that wet summer of 1816 with Byron and the Shelleys. Lord Byron has inspired my writing even from this distance.

      Cheers, Sam/Carol

      • Hi Sam – thank you .. but I’m incredibly unknowledgeable … I am learning via the blogs and other routes. British history – I am very muddled about it – but again I am beginning to fill in some of the gaps (in a basic way) and understand how we interacted across Britain, let alone Europe.

        I certainly need to learn more … she made some mistakes and was only recognised after her death … despite being not particularly well known her brother ensured she was buried in Winchester Cathedral – so appropriate now that she is highly regarded.

        Thanks for your reply … cheers Hilary

        • sammozart says:

          Thanks, Hilary. I didn’t know Jane Austen is buried in Winchester Cathedral. How perfect. And, now that I have researched her and studied her writing, I can see why she is so highly regarded. She could have written her works today. Her wit and observation of human nature are timeless.

          Cheers,
          Carol/Sam

  55. Robert Price says:

    My dear Miss Child,

    Time travel really is possible — your eloquent essay has not only taken me round the world but back in time as well. I felt a true sense of sequential relations to the events of which you have so generously reminded us. It reads like a hymn. Thank you for your time, assiduous research and whetted wit.

    Many cheers,

    R.

  56. Jean Raffa says:

    Thank you, Robert. Wishing you many more sweet walks and fine reads here and everywhere.

  57. susan scott says:

    Those moments of feeling at one are so precious and make live so worth living. This lovely post reminds me of the value of being rather than doing and the importance of slowing down our ‘monkey mind’ and being open to the inner treasures as well as appreciating the beauty that surrounds us, whether it be a cardinal, a blade of grass, the smell of freshly brewed coffee, a sunrise –

    Thank you for sharing this with us – may day is the lighter and brighter for it.

    • Jean Raffa says:

      Thank you, Susan. Yes, these moments of feeling at one are especially rare and valuable during the first half of life when sometimes it takes everything we’ve got just to stay afloat. But once we experience one of them it’s as if the wonder and pleasure take up residency, like a hidden treasure in a far cavern of our mental and physical memory. And the treasure grows every time we experience another moment like this until, with time and attention, we clear a path to it and it spills over into our daily lives. For me, this lightening and brightening has been the greatest blessing of aging.

      • sammozart says:

        Well said, Jeanie. I love returning to this piece, as I commented to Susan. And, Izzy is a wonderfully healing companion dog, even through your words and pictures.

        –Carol

    • sammozart says:

      My feelings, exactly, Susan. I keep returning to Jeanie’s story, to calm and center. And, I do love the dog.

      –Carol

  58. Robert Price says:

    A sweet walk and a fine read…

    R.

  59. Janice Flanders says:

    Your husband Vic was the ultimate teacher Elaine. He restored within them what they came into this profession to be, kind individuals that used their knowledge to care for others. It’s was the most thoughtful and selfless expenditure of his very limited energy. He gave his kindness to them. Thank you for sharing your and Vic’s story.

    • Janice, I’m so touched by your response and words about Vic. Thank you. I’m sorry I didn’t see your comment until now.

      Vic was an incredible teacher. His students loved him and he loved them. The last two years were all about kindness.

  60. Carol Rodi says:

    I am so moved. moved to tears. I love this poem for all of the images it provokes and the emotions your words of that day bring up in me, having also been my husbands care giver. Yes, only kindness and if I may add, compassion make sense. Thank you
    ..

    • Thanks for leaving a comment, Carol. I’m sorry I didn’t know it was here until today.

      I’m with you. Kindness and compassion hold hands. We had some hard times, but there were soul-transforming moments all along the way.

  61. Deborah, you’ve written a flashback masterpiece of a life. The memories that stand out and are never forgotten. The traumas that still hurt. The events and images that make us the women we are. It reminds me a bit of The Soul’s Code idea that we are there in essence in the embryo or acorn of our birth.

    Because of deafness, music is now an inner experience for me. I’m grateful when music shows up in dreams–and I know how much it still forms my sense of who I am.

    • sammozart says:

      I am so sorry, Elaine, that music can now be only an inner experience for you. Music is my first love. Even though I now play infrequently my guitar and only a few notes on piano (I wish I had one), I studied music theory (harmony) — thereby understanding how Beethoven could compose even when he became deaf –, I nearly always am listening to music, spend hours making playlists, and have dreamed of music. Both my parents played piano, and my father would play his records and we’d sit with him and listen to the music. I do sympathize with you. At least it’s an inner experience for you, and it shows up in your dreams

      –Carol

  62. What a wonderful article to read on a Sunday morning, Susanne. I love knowing more about artists and dreaming. I didn’t dream last night, so I get these dreams. And glorious flowers. At the moment, I’m writing about a series of dreams I had in the years after my husband’s death. I had no doubt that these many visitations from my “dream husband” were about my inner masculine energy and the transformation it was undergoing after my husband’s death. Thank you for inspiring me to keep working on this project.

    • Susanne says:

      Hallo Elaine, thank you for your response. I am so thrilled that you are in the process of directing your creative energy into a new book about dreams. I remember that my mother shared a dream with me that so painfully but still beautiful illustrated her feelings about his demise. She told me that in her dream, she and my father were walking, but all of a sudden he entered a new road, and she could not follow him because it was closed off by a gate. She screamed at him, because she felt betrayed that he left her behind. But than she saw his mother who guided him on his new path and she realised she had to follow her own way. I used this dream in my own book about dreams of the deceased.

  63. Susanne says:

    Thank you for such a lovely comments, Susan and Deborah. I really cherish the connection between dreams and creativity and always try to use dreams as soul food.

  64. susan scott says:

    p.s. and the flowers are beautiful!

  65. susan scott says:

    well, I loved this thank you Carol for putting up this lovely mindfunda post. I can ‘see’ Susanne giving this talk … In fact I’m off to my reading group this evening at Carly’s home. Carly was at a conference last year in Holland, that Susanne presented at (and I think she, Susanne, introduced Anne Baring as a key note speaker). My friend (and Carly’s friend and colleague) Dr Deon van Wyk attended this conference too and I know that he and Susanne met. AND, I know that the Jung Development group had Deon give them a seminar this past weekend on Dreams. I wonder if he incorporated this lovely material? I would not be surprised.

    Many creative people use and have used their dreams as source … RL Stevenson – many of his best stories from dreams. Edgar Allan Poe; Coleridge’s The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner inspired by dreams; Einstein and his relativity theory inspired by his dream of sledding down a steep slope approaching the speed of light .. there are many examples in the literature ..

    Love the stories of Dali’s rituals!

    Thank you for the link provided to listen to David Dubal – I hope to listen to it soon.

    I’m still of the view that others who appear in one’s dreams represent an ‘aspect’ of the dreamer … call it shadow if you like, unknown repressed parts of one’s self, including the noble parts ….

    • sammozart says:

      I hope Susanne sees this, Susan. What a number of connections. As for the David Dubal video, it’s only 12 min. long, and all I can say is Wow! Most inspiring. I will watch it again. I see he has made other videos. I may watch them.

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      –Carol

  66. Beautiful, heartfelt writing that stirs mind, body, spirit and soul. As we lean into love, the heart opens wider than ever thought possible. Beyond language really. Blessings always, Deborah.

  67. A rich, in-depth dream article Susanne with great presentation. This poet swooned as she read Van Gough’s inspiring words … ‘the sight of the stars makes me dream’ … reminding me of various poems I love! Deeply fascinating to learn of Dali’s approach to his creative work. Your images enriched the text even further. Blessings always, Deborah.

  68. T. J. Banks says:

    I love the progression of this poem, Deborah and the way that your speaker’s moving back to the beginning of things and remembering that she is the music. That last stanza is incredibly powerful.

    • Thank you so much TJ for your lovely comment. The last verse holds within, pre birth memories. Music is a part of our journey, all journeying I feel, as we search for the music within, and discover our own song.

  69. T. J. Banks says:

    Thank you, Deborah! You know how it is — some poems come to you, asking to be written, and these did.

  70. Many thanks Susan, that’s so kind of you! Blessings always, Deborah

  71. Susanne says:

    I am the music, just dance to my tune. So many times we are fighting in our heads, reminiscing about “the things we should have said” while in the mean time we could be humming and dancing to our own tune. Wise words Deborah, spoken from the heart.

  72. Susan says:

    Wonderful!!! I remember it from some while back

  73. Breathtakingly beautiful poems, pure delight to read! Your first poem “Benison” reminds me of a poem I wrote many years ago. Thank you for opening the eyes of my heart dear poet. I hope the day finds you well. Blessings, Deborah

  74. Thank you so much Robert, I truly loved writing this one! This is my first ever post on The Scheherazade Chronicles, looks wonderful on the page! Blessings, Deborah

  75. T. J. Banks says:

    I was incredibly moved by this. I could see that moment of transformation in my mind’s eye so clearly.

  76. T. J. Banks says:

    Thank you, Susan and Gwynn! “Benison” appeared years ago in a publication called ARTELLA, and “Werewolf Eyes” was read on a poetry radio show. “The Quality of Light,” on the other hand, has been waiting in the wings or at least waiting for the right publication. I don’t write a lot of poetry these days; but I think that my early days of writing poetry somehow shaped the way I write prose.

  77. susan scott says:

    The poems are breathtaking Tammy … will you put them into a book? Into THE literary review for sure …

    Thank you so much.

  78. Susan says:

    Thank you Elaine so much. And Carol for this. Your piece is very image evoking – and I felt my heart soften and an accompanying expansion of blood corpuscles. A humming grace – beautiful.

  79. Robert Price says:

    A generous author and a gracious read…

    R.

    • Thank you so much, Robert. This experience stays with me. Months later, an intern who was there told me the pulmonologist was permanently transformed and softened by the experience. I loved telling the poet Naomi Shihab Nye, a generous and humble woman, about the effect of her words.

  80. Robert Price says:

    The very best of romantic tension.

    The truth will out…

    R.

  81. Robert Price says:

    So happy to find quietly here, a voice of reason…

    The veils shifted and truth more understood.

    So very glad to share your light…

    Please dull the cleaver with all your might!

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      I believe you are going to find many more of these quiet, yet strong voices of reason here in the very near future, R, the veil raised.

      Absolutely.

      Thank you for coming by and for your comment.

      C.

  82. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Beautiful poems, Tammy. I LOVE your heart!

    • sammozart says:

      I will pass this along to Tammy, Gwynn. Thank you — I agree. And, will you not send me something to post?

  83. susan scott says:

    This is wonderful Samantha! O golly as I type I see you have put up the cover of my book! (I was so intent on reading your lovely post ) – thank you!! O gosh, and the Lilith one too! This gal has a wide grin .. you are so generous to we writers, thank you so so much.

    I wish you so well in this new venture and will pass this on wherever I can.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Susan. I will tell you more about the literary review very soon. It is my pleasure to post cover images of my friends’ books here. Visitors on this website can click through to Amazon via these images and read more about the books and hopefully buy them. On The Scheherazade Chronicles “Bookstore” page are your books along with those of the other authors, with a bit about the book and bios of you and Susan Schwartz — I copied and pasted the text from the book cover. So visitors can go to that “Bookstore” page and buy the books through Amazon, too. I see you have a new blog post today; I will catch up. I read the last one but didn’t comment, but will.

  84. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I am looking forward to reading the submissions.

  85. Lovely story for all times, but, of course, especially so for this time of year. I’ve never read it before, bad on me, so this was a treat.
    Gifts too nice to use at present … that stayed with me.
    Thanks for sharing, Samantha.

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Silvia. Yes, this is a special story for all time. I like to read it every now and then. Besides, in its simplicity it exemplifies great storytelling. I’m glad you liked it. I’m glad you came by, too. I hope you have a very happy Christmas, you and your family.

  86. Gwynn Rogers says:

    What a magical and delightful story. I agree with Robert as the story is very beautifully written. Enjoy preparing for the Holiday Season. Christmas should be about family and caring… not presents.

    • sammozart says:

      I agree, Gwynn. Christmas should be about family and caring — why I published this story, particularly in this current atmosphere of fear and anger.

      Thank you for coming by. One of these days I’ll discover how to configure my WordPress theme to offer Christmas season visitors a cup of eggnog. 🙂

  87. Robert Price says:

    Oh Sam,

    Thank you for posting this beautiful beautifully written story. It has been a long time since I enjoyed it last. Yes a fine favorite. Tremendous, mammoth…

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, R. The poignancy of O. Henry’s story is that it gives us the spirit of the season.

  88. Marsha says:

    I am absolutely thrilled to see you back with such an entertaining, short story. I apologize for taking so long to read it. I adore the feeling of being in the same room with a writer. I was definitely part of the scenario. I’ve missed Moriorty and you.

    • sammozart says:

      No need to apologize, Marsha, for taking long to arrive at my blog and read my story “Zinfandel.” I’m just pleased that you took the time to read it — and to comment. I like that you like being in the same room as this writer. I enjoy the company, especially yours, and I think that my narrating this story in the first person intensifies the moment and makes the suspense more imminent.

      Moriarty is getting such a big head, because he perceives he has more fans than I, and I suspect this is so.

      Thank you, dear Marsha, for stopping by.

  89. susan scott says:

    O gosh Samantha! Firstly, I’m pleased to see you’re back. You and Moriarty have been gone a long long while, too long. Glad that the dusting brought you back and the mysteries were partly solved. This is an extraordinary story – I was intrigued from the beginning and with you every step of the way, on the cat walk, with the damp cloth, with the search for Zinfadel .. with Dickens, the raven (while thinking all the while, ‘what the Dickens’) – with EAP and the story and his $50 …

    I agree with Patricia – enter this into a short story competition … worthy of many accolades…

    I’ve been away, just back yesterday …

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Susan, for your kind compliments and suggesting this story is accolades worthy — words every writer wants to hear, of course. I will look into entering this story in a contest, one that is free to enter. I usually don’t enter such contests because they charge a fee. But just knowing you and Patricia think this is competition worthy counts a lot.

      I’m glad you liked the story! And welcome back, yourself. 🙂

  90. Pat Garcia says:

    Absolutely, fantastic! Fantastic, Stupendo as they say in Italian. This is a short story worth publishing. You have incorporated humour and mystery that draws any reader into the story. I love it.
    Excellent writing. It is a joy to see Moriarty and Dickens have returned and I hope they stay around for a long time. Maybe Poe and the Raven will be frequent visitors and reason for Moriarty to stay.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you so much, Patricia. I am glad you liked my story. I don’t think Moriarty will go anywhere; he’ll be around. I think he just hasn’t been at my blog lately because it got too dusty and it made him sneeze. Maybe Poe and the raven will return. I cannot say nevermore about them. Moriarty does have some fascinating spectral visitors — Chekhov’s Black Monk and, naturally, Erik, The Phantom of the Opera, is a close friend. I’ll probably stumble across more of them — just so they don’t guzzle away all my Zinfandel. 🙂

      Thanks for your kind compliments.

      Shalom aleichem,
      Samantha

  91. Gwynn Rogers says:

    What… they didn’t leave any cheese and crackers for you? What friends! At least have them invite you to their party!

    • sammozart says:

      Forget the cheese and crackers, Gwynn. It was the Zin I was after. I think Moriarty didn’t invite me to his party because he didn’t want to interrupt my dusting.

      Thanks! 🙂

  92. Robert Price says:

    I’m thirsty. Could I have more?

    Ever,

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      I am ever concocting more, R. Thanks. And, thank you for sharing this post on Facebook!

      Ever more,
      S.

  93. Congratulations on the award, Samantha, and thanks for nominating me! It was nice getting this glimpse into your life and your writing. You pose some interesting questions, but it’s always the nominating other bloggers part of these awards that gives me pause. (I don’t know many bloggers!). We’ll see! 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      Nice to hear from you, Sara. The hardest part IS nominating other bloggers, since I don’t know that many, either, and am always running behind on reading those I do know. You are always worthy of nominating, of course. Should you choose to accept, that’s great; should you not, I totally understand. 🙂

  94. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Ok, I’m working at answering your questions. I don’t have many people to nominate though. Heck, I would nominate you, Pat, Tammy, and Silvia if I could!

    Hey, since you have generated such a marvelous post, maybe I SHOULD nominate you again and pass the buck back at you. 😉

    • sammozart says:

      It IS difficult finding bloggers to nominate, Gwynn, especially since I don’t read that many blogs and am running behind with the ones I do read, including yours. But, I can’t wait to read your answers to my questions. I’m glad you accepted the award. I’ll be over to see you soon.

  95. Robert Price says:

    My dear Samantha,

    Congratulations on your Liebster award. This is a very fine read.

    Keep digging those clams at low tide, and may your wilder dream come anon.

    A sincere thank you to Pat Garcia for bestowing you this award.

    Cheers,

    R.

  96. Pat Garcia says:

    Hello Samantha,
    I read your tribute to Fitzgerald, and it got me to thinking. I believe he was never really happy after his first book of prominence with The Great Gatsby. Maybe, his own expectations to be like his great grand uncle had something to do with that.
    His legacy is The Great Gatsby. I wonder did he learn to appreciate the jewel that he wrote. How sad if he didn’t.
    I have enjoyed reading about his life. I’ve read The Great Gatsby. It was required literature in my university, but I never really got into Fitzgerald’s life like I have as I read your article.
    Thank you. It is well written and heartwarming for all of us who want to learn more about his genius.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Hello Patricia,

      F. Scott Fitzgerald’s expectations had nothing to do with Francis Scott Key. He was up against himself, often lacking self-discipline, and then there was Zelda’s mental breakdown. And he envied the rich.

      Of course he appreciated the high quality of The Great Gatsby and said so in a letter to his Scriber’s editor, Maxwell Perkins. What he said is quoted in the forewords to publication editions of Gatsby.

      What’s not as often said about Fitzgerald, sadly, is that he was a serious and meticulous writer, produced a great treasure of pristine short stories and some essays. He wrote plays and movie scripts. He is well-known for his accurate ear for dialogue, his astute recording of The Lost Generation and the Jazz Age, and his prophetic observations. He wrote another of our great American novels, Tender Is the Night. That novel is one of my all-time favorites.

      He wrote much on what makes good writing — worth pursuing, studying and implementing for those who want to be serious writers.

      I cannot say enough about F. Scott Fitzgerald. He is one of our great American writers. Also, he discovered Ernest Hemingway and recommended Hemingway’s writing to Maxwell Perkins at Scribner’s, who became their mutual editor and publisher. He invariably spelled Ernest’s last name “Hemmingway.”

      Thank you for coming by and for your thoughtful comments.

      Shalom aleichem,
      Samantha

  97. Robert Price says:

    My dearest Samantha,

    More like a quadruple birthday commoration — yours was just a few days before. Lovely to read this — it is green and cool…

    Ever,

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      R — Thank you for the personal birthday commemoration and for your lovely green and cool comment. Thanks always for reading and listening.

      Ever green,
      S.

  98. susan scott says:

    Here’s another ‘swept away’ on your poesy Carol/Samantha. This was so interesting to read. A time and place – I’m not sure I knew of Zelda’s breakdowns or her tragic death. Didn’t Hemingway meet up with Anais Nin in France, Paris at some stage? I’ll check that out.

    Two weeks ago I attended a one day seminar by visiting Jungian analyst here in Johannesburg on Psyche & Amor (Eros/Cupid). In a space in silence we were encouraged to write, meditate do whatever, I wrote a few short lines, Look Homeward Angel.

    Thank you, this is a lovely piece of writing.

    • sammozart says:

      Susan, as I said to Gwynn, I do find fascinating the meeting or confluence of historical notables, especially of writers and musicians. It is quite possible that Hemingway met Anais Nin in Paris. They all were there. Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast is a great resource for finding those connections, mostly via Gertrude Stein’s artist soirees. The book is a fascinating read; I’ve read it twice.

      As for Zelda, I think she was always a bit off, though I do believe much of what she said in Save Me the Waltz. Her schizophrenic (as they diagnosed it then) condition intensified at Ellerslie, when at age 29, an age when most dancers’ careers are over, she decided she would become a professional ballet dancer, practicing relentlessly at a barre before a great gilt mirror and then taking classes when they went to Europe.

      You wrote on the subject “Look Homeward, Angel”? Do I understand that correctly? Interesting. That is a very deep subject. It is about the father, as regards Thomas Wolfe and how I experience the novel.

      This is a long response. You spark my thoughts. Thank you, Susan. I appreciate that.

  99. A literary giant, thank you for this detailed post, Samantha. I can just see his imagination take flight in that great, big house, and spurred by all his travels. Like all complicated minds, there are the internal demons, the vice. No enduring art without great struggle, I suppose.
    Interesting path to travel on for this reader. While I knew about his writings, I knew next to nothing about his life.

    • sammozart says:

      Clearly Scott’s imagination did take flight in that mansion, Silvia, but most often haunting the guests in the middle of the night, playing croquet/polo on the lawn, carousing the town, and less in the direction of his writing. Nonetheless, Scott Fitzgerald is one of our best 20th century writers. His novels, The Great Gatsby and Tender Is the Night, as well as many of his short stories are among my favorites. I read them over and over. He is my kindred spirit and my great inspiration. I learned much about writing from him.

      Thank you for coming by, Silvia, and commenting. I really appreciate it. 🙂

  100. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I agree with Marsha’s comment. Your post is an amazing history lesson with incredible pictures. Thanks.

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Gwynn. I am particularly fascinated by the meeting of two famous historical figures; in my case, especially writers and musicians. I could discuss/write endlessly on that subject. 🙂

  101. Marsha says:

    Ahhh! Carol, you have done it again. I’ve been swept away, by your tremendous talent, to another time and place. Thank you for the history lesson and smart prose.

  102. Cemre says:

    Beautifully written Carol.

  103. Pat Garcia says:

    Hello Samantha,

    I have nominated you for this year’s Liebster Award. If you decide to accept, the instructions are at my book review website at:
    https://patgarciabookreviews.com/2016/07/17/the-liebster-award/

    Have a nice Sunday.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      I have accepted the nomination, Patricia. At long last.

      Thank you.

      Shalom aleichem,
      Samantha

  104. As I ponder ideas for future challenge themes, I am drawn to those that benefit from, or are inspired by, real-life activities. One of our many future travel plans is to visit as many of the national parks as possible. Your pictures are lovely. I look forward to seeing many of these in person.

    • sammozart says:

      I would like to visit all of the national parks, too, Lissa.

      Thanks for coming by and for including me on your list.ly list. I greatly appreciate it.

      I’m glad to meet you on the A-Zs, and congratulations for making it through.

  105. Congrats on completing the challenge. This theme sounds like a fab way to look back on some memories of your mum and remember the good times you had travelling together 🙂
    Debbie

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Debbie, for coming by. Congratulations to you, too, for making it through the A to Zs. Yes, lots of memories on the A-Z journey — caught me by surprise. 🙂

  106. Samantha, what beautiful and heartfelt words. “Without silence there is no Nostalgia.” So true. We need peace around and in our minds to think. We need to hear ourselves think, and the world all around is full of stimulants that go way over the top. Sometimes, I wonder, how will the young generation with so many gadgets constantly in their hands, in their ears, will learn to hear themselves think.
    So nice that you had the opportunity to revisit places you visited with Mom. So sorry about your loss. I sit here tying to imagine how difficult the journey must’ve been for you both. I imagine there is strength to be found after such difficult time, perhaps strength in the memories.
    Thank you for taking us to all the beautiful places you have visited. I enjoyed each post more than I could say.
    It was good meeting Moriarty. It’s been a pleasure reconnecting in April. I am looking forward to reading your beautiful posts. To hear you “talk.”

    • sammozart says:

      How thoughtful your comment, Silvia. I was wondering if anyone would pick up on the “Without silence there is no Nostalgia,” because that came to be at the heart of my A to Z journey this time around. It was one of thoughts that comes and stands right in front of you as you’re moseying along your story writing path. I think you may have said that in something you wrote. I agree with your concerns about the younger generation with their devices illuminating their faces and blocking the sensuality of their surroundings.

      Yes, the journey for my mother and me was difficult and heartrending — I wouldn’t want to repeat it — but, you know, you grow spiritually, and I believe that’s what life is about; nevertheless, I would have liked a more fun way.

      Thank you so much for your deeply thoughtful and kind compliment. I enjoy reading your stories, too, and look forward to reading more.

      Moriarty says he’s glad to meet you. 🙂

  107. Pat Garcia says:

    I LOVE this! Tell Moriarty I said hello. I am glad I had a sneak preview before it was posted officially. You did an amazing job my dear. I enjoyed each day we travelled together looking at your photos.
    Shalom aleichem,
    Patricia http://www.patgarciaandeverythingmustchange.com/2016/05/reflection-to-z-blog-challenge-2016.html

    • sammozart says:

      That Moriarty, he’s pretty sneaky, Patricia, sending out previews of my posts when they’re still drafts. I never know what he’s going to be up to. Anyway, he says hi, and that next time he’s over in Paris visiting the Phantom of the Opera, he might just stop over and visit you. He’d kind of like to meet The Prophet and The Child.

      Meanwhile, thank you for your kind compliments and for traveling with me all along the A-Zs.

      Shalom aleichem,
      Samantha

    • sammozart says:

      I meant to say, too, Patricia, that I thought about you in these Reflections when I was writing about the music.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  108. Marsha says:

    I so thoroughly enjoyed this wonderful piece. You are a spectacular writer and I have missed keeping up with you and our other group members. I believe in Morirty and his presence in your life. He is a part of the creative universe you tap into and share so generously with you readers. He is real!!

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks for the “spectacular” compliment, Marsha. I know — we know you have been with us bloggers in spirit. You were in our hearts.

      As for Moriarty, at this moment he is beaming from ear to ear. 🙂

  109. Gulara says:

    I loved your theme, Samantha. I loved your posts – the photos are stunning and you captured the soul of those places. Amazing. I also love sea and water in any form, so your posts captivated me with their beauty. Thank you!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gulara. I loved your “Love Letters” theme, too. I like “sense of place,” and in so appreciating seem to capture the soul — I hope. And, of course, I love the sea.

  110. Mary Burris says:

    This year, the challenge started out strong for me, but toward the end, I was so tired and didn’t get around to as many blogs as I had hoped. Thankfully, I did manage to have all my posts pre-written. Next year will be different. I will be better prepared.

    • sammozart says:

      Oh, tell me about it, Mary — getting tired and trying to keep up. I started out ahead with prewritten posts, but nearly fell behind towards the end.

      We did it, though! Congratulations to you for surviving.

      Thanks for coming by.

  111. Hilary says:

    Hi Sam – not sure what happened .. as I’d have been around commenting, even if I wasn’t participating … but now you’ve shown up here – I’ll come back and read some of the A-Zs …

    Sounds like we’re on the same wave length … looking after the land – which will keep us alive and healthy …

    Cheers for now – Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I agree about the land, Hilary. I had a glitch in my website in the beginning — my computer and it had been down for a time — so I had to get email notifications and other details sorted. I think I finally had achieved all that just as I was finishing my last few A-Z posts, naturally. 🙂

      I’m so glad to see you here. I always enjoy your comments, and have enjoyed reading them on other bloggers’ sites.

      Cheers!
      Sam

  112. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I loved your A to Z posts as they showed the beauty of nature across this incredible country. The history of the land and your wisdom that you shared made the posts even more interesting. Great job and Congratulations for surviving!!

    • sammozart says:

      Well, thank you, Gwynn. I appreciate your compliment. Congratulations to you, too, for surviving!

  113. susan scott says:

    You did a truly extraordinary and beautiful A-Z Samantha, showing us the beauty of your travels with your family. Also, you revealed the importance of retaining the land in its pristine state, while giving us some fascinating history behind the scenes. I was captivated …

    And thank you for the photo of Moriarty; please send him my very best wishes. I look forward to climbing those stairs one of these days to have a blueberry scone and lashings of delicious cream with him and you –

    • sammozart says:

      If Moriarty doesn’t eat it all first, Susan. 🙂 Even so, how lovely it would be to spend some time together.

      Thank you for your kind and thoughtful complimentary comments.

  114. Mary Burris says:

    I love the mountains, and I especially love the mountain lakes. When I lived in Central Idaho, I would spend my weekends just relaxing by a nearby lake, not doing much of anything but taking in the beauty and splendor and recharging my life batteries for the next week.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you for coming by, Mary. Relaxing by a mountain lake sounds like just what the doctor ordered for me just now. 🙂 Idaho — I’d love to visit there one day.

  115. Julia says:

    Yosemite is very lush and green. I have not been there in a couple of years, but how are things faring with the drought here in California?

    • sammozart says:

      About the drought I don’t know, Julia. They did have a good Sierra snowpack this year, but I had read where it will take several years of good rain and snowfall to recover from that drought.

      I am emailed an L.A. Times newsletter, but I’ve fallen behind on reading it while attending to the A-Zs.

      Thanks for coming by. I appreciate your comments.

  116. susan scott says:

    It was lovely to re-read this Samantha. I remember The Fisherman and his Soul .. a telling story.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, a telling story. Thanks for coming by and re-reading, Susan. 🙂 Once I get started reading Oscar Wilde, it’s hard for me to stop. His words and his thoughts just flow, and with such wit and wisdom.

  117. Red says:

    You certainly have some beautiful pictures of some lovely places! (Speaking of being a travel writer!)
    Congrats on surviving the challenge!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Red. Yes, it would be nice to be a travel writer. I haven’t figured out how I can carry that off yet and make it a viable income.

      Contrats to you, too, on surviving the A-Z challenge. I really did enjoy reading your posts.

  118. Susan Bruck says:

    This is a beautiful and inspiring post. Thanks so much for sharing the photos and your thoughts. There is nothing like the beauty of nature to bring peace. We are lucky to have our national parks.

  119. Nature’s bounty can definitely be mystifying. Zen indeed. Congrats on completing the challenge. Being your minion was nice.

    Blog: QueendSheena
    2016 A to Z Participant
    Joy Brigade Minion

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Sheena-kay. Glad to have met you on the A-Zs, and thank you for being my minion. 🙂

  120. The perfect quote form Muir to close such an amazing run, Samantha. “I wonder if leaves feel lonely when they see their neighbors falling.” He sure had a way with words when it came to the beauty of nature. And being there sure felt as if a grand master laid it all before us and said — This is for you, enjoy. I imagine it was a treat on top of many treats to see snowflakes on the way in the month of May. Gorgeous all around. Images to leave one in awe.
    It’s been truly wonderful to spend this month with you, Samantha, to read so many beautiful posts, enjoy the images, and read your poetic words.
    Congratulations on completing the Challenge. Now, a break, then back to our normal routine. I look forward to read many, many more of your posts.

    • sammozart says:

      To be able to be out there contemplating nature as John Muir did and then to be able to describe it so evocatively and poetically, yes.

      Thank you for your kind compliments, Silvia. It has been my pleasure to read your beautifully expressed thoughts throughout this series. Congratulations to you, too, on completing the challenge.

      Right, now a break, and I am already thinking about what I want to write next, how to present it. 🙂

  121. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Google, “The Greening of Paradise Valley” the book about Hetch Hetchy. You will find my great grandfather James A. Waymire there. Man, what a GORGEOUS area. Your pictures are stunning. I may sit and stare at your pictures all day and zone-out in a state of Zen to celebrate surviving the A to Z AND everything that transpired this month. Congratulations on an excellent job!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you. Congratulations to you, too, Gwynn. I will look for that book.

      I would love to stare at these pictures, too — well, in fact, I have throughout writing this post. I have enlarged prints of some of these, too, in the house. So, I get to see them a lot. But, I still have A-Z blog reading to catch up on; plus, related emails to answer. So, I must trek around in the woods a bit more before I’m out.

      Woohoo! Almost out. 🙂

  122. susan scott says:

    Well, Samantha, such beauty! I am astounded and almost speechless. This is zen in its purest form. Zen – in the zone. Nature, in her zone – I would have felt that. It’s been such a joy to go along on this ride with you, the beauty of your photographs and the very interesting history accompanying them. Thank you! How terrific to hover the mouse and get the location –
    Whew! Well done for completion of the A-Z!!!!

    • sammozart says:

      It took me the entire A-Z series to figure out how to mouse hover, Susan. And it’s so simple to set up. Wish I had thought of that in the beginning.

      Zen — Nature in her zone. Thank you for enlightening me on that. I suppose I had thought of it that way, but hadn’t identified it as such. You know, when you enter Yosemite Valley, you come around a bend and suddenly the whole valley opens up before you and there is this unexpected beauty and grandeur. At the Grand Canyon, you go through a conifer forest that suddenly ends at the edge of this cliff and wide open canyon, and you stand there and go, “Oh. Hmm. Awesome.” But when Yosemite Valley opens before you, it’s all green and silver and crystal, and you feel every burden just fall off, like the stream when it reaches the edge of the high granite cliff, and you are at peace, and, for me, at least, I think, oh, this is what it’s all about.

      So, now the A-Zs are over for this year. As you say, Whew! How you went on that Botswana adventure and still managed to get through the A-Zs is quite a feat. Well done to you, too!

  123. Gulara says:

    Simply stunning, Samantha. Wow! You were right – this post is a gem in its own right. And what a way to close the series. So pleased you reached out and we connected. Beautiful!

    • sammozart says:

      I am glad we connected, too, Gulara. I meet the most wonderful and interesting people along this A-Z journey.

      Thank you for coming by and for your lovely comments.

  124. Pat Garcia says:

    My Dear Samantha,

    Looking at your Z post this morning, I am in Austria heading toward Southern Italy in my mind. The photographs remind me so much of Austria, especially around Innsbruck, and Matrei which is almost the last village you drive past when heading toward the Italian border. I usually drive in the direction of Bolzano and Merano when I drive because of the mountains. I love the mountains, and I love sitting on my balcony in my hotel with the sea before me and the mountains in the background.

    You have done a wonderful job of awakening memories that I treasure. They are all in the treasure trove of my mind and you have tickled each one out of its hiding place during this A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Thank you very much.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Having never been to Europe, I am glad to have these images you present of Austria/Italy. Sitting on a balcony with the sea before me and the mountains behind me is my ideal. A music soundtrack springs to mind — Schubert’s “Trout” quintet and Philip Glass’s “Tirol Concerto,” the luxuriously long second movement — pieces perhaps not representative of that exact same area, but close in image, I would imagine. Too, I think if I ever got to Europe you could give me a wonderfully grand tour.

      I have awakened my own treasured memories in producing this series, Patricia. I took myself adventuring along a path I came upon unexpectedly. The Lily Pad of our dreams, I think. Thank so much for your kind and thoughtful comments and compliments.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  125. Julia says:

    I wish I could visit Yosemite again.

  126. Julia says:

    I would love to visit Yosemite again.

    • sammozart says:

      Your comment came through twice, so I’ll reply twice. 🙂 Tomorrow, Saturday, Yosemite Valley — heaven on earth.

  127. I have the warmest spot in my heart for Yosemite–for the experience of traveling up winding roads on our way, the sight of El Capitan, the ride up to Glacier Point, looking down at the valley while knowing John Muir and others like him walked by the river, down the path. I am forever in love with the place, and greatful we have national parks, something, to a large point, uniquely American.
    Thank you, Samantha for sharing your story and the images. Lovely seeing you smile in one of the shots.

    • sammozart says:

      And, why wouldn’t I be smiling, being there in Yosemite, Silvia. It holds a warm place in my heart, too. It beckons, always. Yes, the national parks are uniquely American, and there for all people. The people own the parks, all of us Americans do. I have a great love for Yosemite, like you.

      And this week, as I have been writing my posts, I have had the privilege of watching the re-airing of Ken Burns’s “The National Parks” on our local PBS station. Inspiring and informative for my writing these stories.

  128. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I always wanted to see Yosemite, and now I have! It is stunning!! I think my great grandfather was involved in trying to preserve this area too.

    You definitely are gifted with taking excellent pictures. Thanks for the excellent description of the area! I loved it!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gwynn. You’ll see more of Yosemite tomorrow — Yosemite Valley. No doubt your great grandfather was involved in preserving that valley as well as the area that I wrote about today. Tomorrow I will post comparison photos of the twin valleys — Yosemite and Hetch Hetchy. The comparison lends impact to the cause for restoring Hetch Hetchy. I’ve been watching, this week, the Ken Burns National Parks series on TV. It’s interesting all those who worked so hard to preserve this area, how they went about it and how they thought about it, often with opposing viewpoints. Gifford Pinchot, for one. No doubt your great grandfather knew him. I see him almost as a nemesis to preserving the parks, but that’s how he saw it. He just thought that clear cutting the forests in certain areas would help maintain the society-nature balance and that filling Hetch Hetchy with water was the most economical way to find water, and pure glacier melt water, for the city of San Francisco. Stephen Mather had a nervous breakdown over this ongoing preservation debate and had to be put in a sanitarium for a while. The only thing that brought him out of his depression was going to a National Park.

  129. Gulara says:

    Wow, just wow! Stunning images. Thank you for introducing us to such amazing places!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gulara. I think the most stunning will be posted tomorrow — Yosemite Valley. So, please do come back for them. Of all the places, perhaps in the world, I think Yosemite has the most stunning, spiritually uplifting, awe inspiring beauty.

  130. Pat Garcia says:

    Samantha,
    Thank you for the beautiful pictures of Yosemite. The United States is beautiful. As I have said to you before, I had the privilege of traveling across country from the West to the Southwest, to the Midwest to the East, to the South in 2008, and I was always amazed at the beauty. As an American living outside of my country, I think I treasured it much more than when I was living there.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Patricia, you and I will have to tour Italy and come tour the U.S. again. Definitely, yes, I, too, treasure this country. That accounts in large part for my great attraction to Thomas Jefferson. Visiting both his homes — Monticello again, and Poplar Forest for the first time — top my travel priority list.

      My aunt took me and her other niece to see Independence Hall when I was 4, and I saw the Liberty Bell. That gave this country meaning for me. Of course, at that age, I’m not sure which impressed me the most — Independence Hall, my new brown and white saddle shoes with the red rubber soles or my aunt’s other niece’s long, thick braids.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  131. susan scott says:

    Extraordinary photos Samantha thank you! That sequoia trunk is breathtaking …
    Ahwahneechee – just looking at the word makes me think of a wide open mouth. It’s lovely when words sound like what they mean!

    Sweet little marmot. Glad it was not a bear. I also do not feed wild animals …

    I think I can see Methusalah’s face in the trunk of the last photo …

    Thank you for this lovely post on Eden on Earth …

    • sammozart says:

      More Eden on Earth tomorrow, Susan, Yosemite Valley. Ahwahnee does sound like what it means. I’m disappointed the new concessionaire changed the name. I thought readers would like my marmot. I did meet a bear once in Yosemite. It’s amazing how big they are close up.

      Thanks. 🙂

  132. Susan Bruck says:

    Thanks for writing about Bodie. I’ve never visited a ghost town. It looks really interesting. The photos are great! I’m not sure I’d want to do the night tour, though,

    • sammozart says:

      Well, I most definitely would not go alone at night, Susan, but I think it would be, well, intriguing, as well as fun.

      Thanks for coming by and for you compliment.

  133. How very interesting, Samantha. This is historical gold, to have this place preserved so well. I have never visited, but in looking at the images, which I scrolled though several times, I can almost get a feel of how it must have been. Even walking on that road, closing one’s eyes and being able to reconstruct the past in our mind’s eyes. Not a great time, I imagine, for the inhabitants, but amazing to see in our days. And talk about bad luck for Mr. Bodey to die the year he struck gold …
    Thank you. Enjoyed going back in time for a minute.

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Silvia. The photos do convey the feeling. The place is so photogenic and the feeling comes through. I’d like to go back and take better pictures, now that I have an idea of what’s there and how my photos turned out; this time, digital. 🙂

      The other interesting thing about Mr. Bodey is that he left a wife and child behind in the East to strike out for gold. He was a respected member of his community. He was gone several years already, when he struck gold.

      You never know….

  134. susan scott says:

    The first pictures look so interesting. It seems those rooms are being preserved exactly how they were left. Is it open to ‘tourists’ and those who visit the Historic Park? Well, you say oit is if they use use the tight kind of transport. But if it gets so awfully freezing then maybe it is not such an attraction? But it’s good to know that ghosts reside .. and the occasional ranger.
    Thank you Samantha, amazing photos! What a pictorial record, let alone its history.

    • sammozart says:

      Bodie is open for tourists, Susan, even in winter if you have skis, snowshoes or snowmobiles. You wouldn’t be able to get there by car; the snow is too deep. Bodie is open year-round, even at night for ghost walks. Many photography tours and classes are held there. Bodie is very near Mammoth Lakes and Mammoth Mountain Ski Resort as well as Yosemite. So, there’s plenty of tourism, though there’s no charge to visit Bodie and while there you might not even see a park ranger, but you probably will see a few other tourists. You drive down a long, graded dirt road three miles to get to the town.

      I took an English couple there on tour once and at the end they invited to visit them in England, gave me their address and phone number. Sweet.

      Yes, the park has been preserved in a state of arrested decay, as I have quoted. That’s why some of the rooms are screened off, so people won’t come in and take stuff. They also repair the buildings so they don’t collapse. They keep them just as they were the last residents left. Bodie IS the historic park, a state park, and is now also a National Historic Landmark.

      Thanks. 🙂

  135. Pat Garcia says:

    I read through your post about Bodie and found myself becoming sad. The people just got up and left, but why? Were there no other options to keeping the town going? I think that greed and progress sometime tend to strip us of our ability to care.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      It was just a rush on gold, Patricia. As soon as that mine was depleted, they moved on to other places, like Tombstone, as I said. There’s another ghost town very near Bodie — Aurora, Nevada. They’re all over the west. Some of them have been restored by artists, like Jerome, Ariz. Tombstone, disappointingly, has gotten too commercial. In other ghost town locations, you’d never know there was a town there; there’s nothing left but wide open space.

      That the inhabitants stayed as long as they did in Bodie, and there were only a handful, amazes me, because Bodie, up in the hills, out in the open is so exposed to that harsh climate. The park rangers love it, though. But they’re equipped.

      Bodie was just a lawless, Wild West town, with more brothels and bars, some say, than homes. The ones who made the real money on the gold, anyhow, were those who sold picks and axes to the miners. Moreover, they left because, there was no other source of income; they were out in the middle of nowhere.

      It’s romantically nostalgic; bittersweet. And a very intriguing place to visit. The lore and allure of the West.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  136. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Fascinating post. You really had fun exploring California! I’ve never been to that area of the state and didn’t know the history existed. Thanks for the education and pictures!

  137. The Naples pier brings back memories. Was there November 2014. So beautiful. Thanks!

    • sammozart says:

      It is beautiful. Glad I was able to bring back some memories for you, Suzanne.

      Thanks for coming by to visit me here on the A-Zs.

  138. I love Catalina. We visited on twice, and I enjoyed being there more than getting there each time. Love walking the streets, taking golf cart excursions up the narrow roads. Probably what I enjoyed the most, exploring the island.
    Thank you for the detailed history, Samantha, and the photos. An impetus to go look for my photos, take a few years back. Cool fact about the buffalo, too.

    • sammozart says:

      I loved driving around the island, too, Silvia. That there are buffalo there always fascinated me. In researching for writing my post, I found out that they give the surplus buffalo to the Lakota under the agreement that the Lakota will not kill the buffalo.

      Thanks.

  139. Julie says:

    In my much younger days, I lived in California, but had no idea. Mostly due to my age and my funds! I love that there are buffalo and a waiting list for cars. 🙂 That mansion reminds me of the houses in Cape May, NJ.
    @abetterjulie from http://www.persephoneknits.blogspot.com

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Wrigley built a Victorian mansion on the side of a hill on Catalina. I’m glad that during the years I lived in SoCal I was able to visit Catalina. It’s a unique place.

      Thanks for coming by!

  140. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Oh, I so enjoyed Catalina. I remember seeing the Wrigley Mansion, but never went inside. Another gal, Betty, commented on my “W” and she wrote about the Wrigley Mansion too with pictures of the inside. COOL!! Our senior class went to Catalina, then years later I sailed there. I dove off the trimarane to swim to shore. As I swam, I looked down and a huge Manteray glided down below me. Catalina is stunning. Thanks for the memories and the beautiful post.

    • sammozart says:

      Wow, Gwynn. You did more at Catalina than I did. We only went for a day. We walked around Avalon and drove a golf cart around the island and that was it. I’ll have to look for Betty’s comment on your blog.

      Thanks! Glad you enjoyed the memories.

  141. gulara says:

    I need a holiday after reading this post 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      Catalina is a wonderful place to spend even just a day, Gulara.

      Thanks for coming by and virtually holidaying on Catalina. 🙂

  142. Pat Garcia says:

    Beautiful, Samantha. When I saw your post pop up in my cue and saw the name Wrigley, I immediately thought of Wrigley Field in I believe Chicago and of Wrigley spearmint gum, which I loved to chew.

    Your photographs bring up so many wonderful memories. Even I have never been to Santa Catalina, the name Wrigley, I know.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      William Wrigley Jr., the same, owned the Chicago Cubs, Patricia. I hadn’t thought of pursuing that same name research until you just now mentioned it. So, he owned Catalina Island and he owned the Chicago Cubs. Interesting person, and, for me, a fellow native Philadelphian. I wonder what else he owned? (Well, besides the chewing gum company. I do know he explored other businesses, earlier, which didn’t do so well.)

      Interesting about photographs and how they affect viewers. Thinking I’d just post a few photos and say a few words became not nearly as simple as I had intended. I have learned a lot. I am heartened that my photos recall memories for some and introduce new places to others. And I am inspired.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  143. susan scott says:

    What an extraordinary history of Santa Catalina. And good that people get about by bike or golf cart or just their feet, buff by hoof. And that they limit the number of cars on the island. Thanks Samantha! I’ve so enjoyed your series!

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Susan. From the mainland sometimes you see Catalina out there across the water and sometimes you don’t, depending on how far the sea mist that rolls in every night has retreated. I lived in SoCal for four months before one hot dry morning walking outside and, lo, there was an island out there on the water. It’s like they set it out there some days and other days they don’t, you know…? 🙂

      Glad you enjoyed my series. It’s been a voyage into self-awareness that I didn’t plan.

  144. Karen says:

    Cape May looks really lovely. So charming and with such a distinctive style. I would love to visit someday.

    • sammozart says:

      It is lovely, Karen. A charming place to visit.

      Thanks for coming by and visiting my blog. 🙂

      Samantha

  145. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Awesome pictures and what a GLORIOUS area!! I so love the beauty and the history of your area. Thank you for sharing. I truly think you should send these to travel magazines.

    • sammozart says:

      Well, I could send these photos to travel magazines, but the photos are old, not digital and, besides, the magazine would pay very little. I have actually tried selling my photos through a third party, a photo agency. It doesn’t pay. I’d rather retain the rights and write current stories with current photos for travel magazines or newspaper features. And, then, all five people who still read print could enjoy my travel photojournalism. I do make photo note cards that I sell in packs of 12 for $25.00: my Mustard Lane Note Cards. But, these days most people simply email.

      I agree, Gwynn — Glorious. I think that’s what the Victorians were thinking when they designed their architecture — Glorious! I can hear Emerson, Thoreau and Muir now. 🙂

  146. Pat Garcia says:

    Samantha,
    if you were to go to Poole or to Brighton or to York, you would believe you are in Cape May. I am amazed at how much British Culture still influences some parts of the United States. Thank you for sharing these beautiful pictures.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Interesting, Patti. Thanks for giving me that picture of England. I would like to visit there. The older I get the more I realize what a relatively short time ago it was that the early settlers arrived here from England; and by the Victorian period, the harnessing of steam power enabled people to travel all over the world rather quickly and comfortably, so they could sail to England, say, and see this new style of gingerbread architecture with long windows and high ceilings and fancy colors and say, “I will build one of those for myself when I get home.” You probably know all this. There are people I’ve met here in Delaware who tell me stories of their English and Dutch ancestors who lived here in the 1600s. The British beat the Dutch in various dustups, and that British culture remains strong, from Georgia to Maine.

      What I found really interesting when we moved to California was meeting Mexican Americans whose families had lived there since California was part of Mexico. What classy people they are. And, fortunately for us, they opened a lot of Mexican restaurants. 🙂

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  147. The images are so beautiful. It makes me want to visit it sometime.
    Thank you for sharing and have a great last week of the challenge. 🙂
    [@samantha_rjsdr] from
    Whimsical Compass

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Ramya. Maybe you will visit Cape May sometime. It’s quite a lovely, relaxing place.

      Thanks for coming by. And, I hope you enjoy this final week of the A-Z Challenge.

  148. susan scott says:

    Those are the prettiest pictures I ever did see Samantha thank you! Those Victorians knew a thing or three about charm.

    • sammozart says:

      They did, Susan. The Victorians were smart in a lot of ways — constructed their buildings intelligently and with a spiritual aspect, with lots of light and reaching upwards to the heavens. It’s a shame we have foregone much that the Victorians have given us.

  149. Gulara says:

    Wow! It definitely looks very loonar 🙂 very beautiful.

    • sammozart says:

      The first time I saw Mono Lake was when I watched the movie High Plains Drifter. I thought, “Where is that fascinatingly beautiful place? An ocean-looking body of water in the middle of the Wild West high desert? Then, a few years later I saw Mono Lake in person. It’s one of those places you have to keep coming back to, I think, because it changes appearance with the rising and falling water levels and with the light at different hours of the day.

      Thanks for coming by, Gulara.

  150. Gulara says:

    Breath-taking views and stunning architecture!

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, the Appalachians are so inviting with their own special kind of silent beauty, I think, Gulara. And that Gothic Biltmore House architecture — I love the spires and gargoyles — so interesting to look at and study. Inside is beautiful, too. I think the house has something like 26 bathrooms — you know, one for each guest room. All I could imagine was having to clean them all; but, I suppose if I could afford such a vast house I could afford the help. 🙂 (I could be wrong about the number of bathrooms, but that number sticks in my head.)

      Thank you for coming by!

  151. Gulara says:

    Stunning photos and a fascinating place. Thank you for showing us around.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, it’s a photogenic town and a pleasant place to visit or vacation, Gulara. Thanks for coming by. Nice to meet you on the A-Zs.

  152. The marble angel is so beautiful. Looks like you and your mom had a great road trip.

    Blog: QueendSheena
    2016 A to Z Participant
    Joy Brigade Minion

    • sammozart says:

      We did have a wonderful trip, Sheena-kay, My mother loved to travel. The photos bring back many fond memories.

      Thanks.

  153. We traveled to Virginia some three years back, but didn’t venture off the beaten path — there seems to always be the issue of time. Did the touristy places, Jamestown, Williamsburg, both nice and historically mesmerizing. This is a different kind of beautiful — just splendid scenery and history. Would love to go back. Thank you, Samantha.

    • sammozart says:

      It is a different kind of beautiful, Silvia, but beautiful in its own right. Virginia’s a beautiful state. I have visited Monticello and would love to go back. Thomas Jefferson’s spirit is still there. You can feel him all around you. I didn’t know about Poplar Forest until a few years ago. That is because it didn’t exist as such. The land all around it was built up and Poplar Forest was privately owned. But the private owners are gone and Poplar Forest and the land that is still part of it is being restored. That tops my list of places to visit and only about four hours from home.

  154. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I LOVE your pictures as I have never traveled in that area. Your area of the country drips in fabulous history as it oozes out all over. It is FUN to see. Thanks for the education and sharing your world.

    • sammozart says:

      It does drip and ooze, Gwynn. It’s humid.

      I’m glad you like my photos. Thanks! 🙂

  155. susan scott says:

    Gorgeous photos Samantha, lovely part of history explained too. And the photo of your Look Homeward Angel is so lovely to see – I remember from a long time ago when I first came to your blog, reading that inscription –

    • sammozart says:

      Yep, that poem is still here on my blog. The poem, the novel and the marble angel are all part of that peak synchronistic moment that showed me I must write. That moment happened when I climbed the dirt road in Jerome, Ariz., with the sculptor, whom I thought had fallen into a bag of flour, to his studio overlooking the open copper mine. “I look like this because I am a sculptor,” he said. “Let me show you what I just finished.” And, so, we walked up the hill and there on the back shelf lying in a box of straw was a flat marble angel he had sculpted.

      Welcome back, Susan! Can’t wait to hear about your trip!

  156. Pat Garcia says:

    Do you know you were actually in my part of the woods. Well, you were in Northern Georgia and I was born in Southern Georgia but I know Georgia, North Carolina and the Southern States very well. I also go to North Carolina every time I go visit the States.
    Excellent article my dear.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I figured I was in your neck of the woods, Patti. And now my daughter treks all through those states — on business and with my granddaughters for cheer. She lives in Charlotte. And, as I’ve mentioned to you before, I did live in Southern Georgia briefly, on St. Simon’s Island for four months in 1967, when my daughter was a newborn and my husband was going to a Navy officers school in Brunswick.

      One of these days we’re going to overlap. Won’t that be fun! 🙂

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  157. Red says:

    That’s stunning! I’m always amazed at the natural beauty out there. You’ve certainly seen some unique places!

  158. So many wanders we have in California. Wonderful learning more about Mono Lake. You’re right, it looks like lunar landscape — I suppose very different and alien, almost. Glad the committee has been able to protect the lake. Goes to show that when there is a will, humanity finds a way.

    • sammozart says:

      So true on all counts, Silvia. As for writing about Calf., I was thinking about how much I’ve written about the state and that I could go on. It has a lot. Its geological energy, those dynamics, I think energize the inhabitants. It’s hard to stay still. 🙂 Yes, the Committee, and I’m amazed that nevertheless how slowly the lake level rises.

  159. Gwynn Rogers says:

    This time I receive your post via Facebook and not your Admin so I hope you receive my comment. Mono Lake reminds me vaguely of the Great Salt Lake. The land scape in some of the pictures looks how I would visualize the moon or other planets. Interesting pictures and history.

    • sammozart says:

      The Great Salt Lake and Mono Lake have a quite similar ecology, Gwynn. The Great Salt Lake, of course, is bigger. Yes, Mono Lake does have an interestingly alien landscape; and when you view it from overhead it looks like a caldron of soup.

      As far as connecting to my site via FB, I post those FB links personally, daily, as soon as I can get around to them.

      Better post notification signup app — it’s Feedburner, which I had before and that worked so perfectly. Sign up, if you’d like, in my right sidebar. I tried it and I’m good to go.

      Thanks!

  160. Pat Garcia says:

    I didn’t know that High Plains Drifter was filmed at Mono Lake. I will take a look at the links you put in the article. What I do find fantastic is the banding together of people to stop the water pillaging and to preserve the characteristics of the lake and its environmental surroundings.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      When the movie opened, when I first saw it, and Clint Eastwood rides across the high desert sagebrush into this town beside what looked like a little ocean in a lunar landscape, Patricia, I thought where could this possibly be? And then a few years later I went to Mono Lake and I found out. I didn’t even know Mono Lake existed until I worked for the commuter airline flying to Mammoth Lakes. Phenomenal.

      People who live in that area are outdoorsy anyhow, so it’s natural and good they came together. That and the Hetch Hetchy story and what St. Andrew’s school does and what they teach the children, these are all tied together, protecting the ecosystem step by step.

      Thanks.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  161. Pat Garcia says:

    I love your pictures of the Pacific Ocean. When I was living in Monterey that was one of my highlights. To wake up in the morning and look out on the Pacific Ocean was nourishment for my soul.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Nourishment for the soul, absolutely, Patti. Thanks for commenting and enjoying my surf and sunset photos.

      I will add here that my “Reflections” draft got published accidentally. I’m not done writing it, as you could probably tell. Comes from trying to do too many things at once, including accepting phone calls while I’m doing all those things. Anyway, I returned it to draft category. You got a review, you lucky person. 🙂 You’ll see the finished version when it is time.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  162. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Now, this is interesting. I left a long message and your blog didn’t post it. Yesterday I talked with a gal at the museum as she and her husband taught about nature. They are very familiar with the Hetch Hetchy project. My Great Grandfather Judge James A. Waymire tried to back the Bond that was to provide money for the project. The bond failed and the State of California took everything my family owned. The family home in Alameda became the Navy’s officers’ quarters. So it is interesting that you would post about Hetch Hetchy.

    • sammozart says:

      Interesting story, Gwynn. Thank you to your great grandfather, Judge James A. Waymire. I’ll look for pictures of the Navy officers quarters. Just think, my husband and I could have been at those quarters had we been stationed in SF rather than Long Beach when he was a Navy officer back during the Vietnam War.

  163. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I love your pictures of the beaches down south. Some of the beaches stand out in my memory where other pictures seem to have faded from my memory bank. It now has been 40 years since I left and have only been back twice but for business. Thanks for the beautiful memories!!

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, they are fond memories. SoCal, especially Redondo, still seems like home to me. The last time I visited there it felt weird, because I felt like I was home but had no home to go to. Saddening.

      • sammozart says:

        I’m going to add this here, Gwynn re your comment on my “Reflections” accidental post —

        Well, for me, someone left the gate open — probably Moriarty — and my “Reflections” draft escaped before it was fully groomed. I lassoed it and put it back in the stable. It will be re-released at the proper time. Geez. You have to watch those blog phantoms every minute. You never know what they’re up to next. No wonder this one’s named Moriarty.

  164. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Boy, today has been filled with coincidences! I was talking with one of the gals at the museum as she and her husband taught classes about nature. They come from California too. Cheryl knew about the Hetch Hetchy, and I told her that my great grandfather Judge James A. Waymire was also instrumental in attempting to pass the water initiative. Some one created a Bond for the Hetch Hetchy Valley. My great grandfather backed the bond. When the bond failed the State of California took everything from my great grandfather. Sadly he died in 1910 from Ptomaine poisoning. The pink mansion in Alameda, used by the Navy Admirals was formerly my great grandparents’ home.

    The Modesto Water System put out a book, “The Greening of Paradise Valley” and it mentioned my great grandfather there. I talked with Chery today about this subject.

    • sammozart says:

      So sad about your great grandfather, Gwynn. I wonder, did he know John Muir? This Hetch Hetchy story is one more people need to know about I think. And, as I mentioned in reply to Silvia’s comment, Sen. Diane Feinstein is against the restoration. You’d think she’d be for it, being a Democrat, but I guess her decision has political relevance to her being a former SF mayor. Anyway, I’ve commented to you further on this cause on my FB page.

      Too, yes, coincidental that this subject is currently forefront, but it is Earth Month, and today, April 22, is Earth Day. My St. Andrew’s School story has relevance to that, big time, too. It’s a long post, but needs to be said. We need constant reminders.

  165. John Muir is one of my heroes. When we go to Yosemite, I try to sit on ‘his rock’ along Merced river, and try to imagine the valley as he saw it in those days. Too bad about Hetch Hetchy, and the fact that he died somewhat heartbroken as a result. Great images, Samantha.

    • sammozart says:

      One of my heroes, too, Silvia. I didn’t know he had a rock. Maybe I’ve sat on it or stood by it. My “Y” post will be about Yosemite Valley. Maybe I’ll have John Muir’s rock in one of my photos.

      FYI, Diane Feinstein is against restoring Hetch Hetchy Valley. I’m surprised, but maybe it has some political relevance to her being a former SF mayor.

  166. Pat Garcia says:

    This is one part of the United States that I haven’t seen. Through you photographs and the story you told I’ve now like to see the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir.
    Thank you.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      A beautiful area, Patricia. And such a tragedy. I want to see Hetch Hetchy Valley restored.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  167. This is stupendous and I love the values the school teaches it’s students.

    Blog: QueendSheena
    2016 A to Z Participant
    Joy Brigade Minion

  168. Red says:

    At the time I saw it, I was at a State-side boarding school, and after watching the movie, we all were really grateful the school was co-ed! (Dorms weren’t, of course.)

  169. Pat Garcia says:

    Your first sixteen or seventeen pictures remind me of old England or better said of Oxford. You have seen a lot in your short life and have many treasures that you can share from your treasure trove of memories.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      I believe that is the whole point of the tudor style architecture as relates to the Anglican religion of the school, Patricia. This whole area looks like England. It’s no wonder the English settled here; they felt right at home. Some of them even speak with an accent or inflection closely sounding like an English accent. Many of them, especially down here on the Delmarva Peninsula, haven’t changed much since their ancestors left England. The British dramas I watch so many of and thought were quaint when I watched them in California, I find quite natural watching them here in the Delaware/Maryland region.

      I think more likely than a short life, I have taken many pictures over the years, but especially in the 1990s.

      Thanks.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

      • sammozart says:

        I have to add here, though, Patricia, it wasn’t so much the pictures that were my focus in this piece but my point, which I made in too many words for an A-Z post, I know; and then I had to wrap the pictures around all that long text.

        I figure if someone is truly interested in what I say about sustainability of humanity and the environment, they can come back and read and discuss later.

  170. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I vaguely remember the Dead Poet’s Society. It was an excellent movie, but amazingly the river and water makes me think more of The Boys in the Boat, even though it is about the University of Washington’s rowing team. Some of the pictures remind me of Lake Washington.

    Interesting post and beautiful pictures.

    • sammozart says:

      Well, I was introduced to rowing a long time ago, when I was college age, by Univ. of Pennsylvania students. Penn has a boathouse on the Schuylkill River, alongside others (Boathouse Row) and I love to watch the rowers sculling on the river. So, I was intrigued when I did my St. Andrew’s School interviews, about their rowing. I got a tour inside their boathouse. You know, those sculls are very expensive.

  171. Red says:

    I love that movie! I recognized your allusion to it in the title immediately. Sadly, I had no idea it was filmed in Delaware, or I would have visited. Beautiful pictures.

    • sammozart says:

      One of my favorite movies, too. It’s funny that while I was watching the movie in California, to me the scenery looked nothing like Delaware. But, there you have it, and now I live in it, just a few miles from Middletown. The St. Andrew’s campus is quite photogenic.

      Interesting that you recognized the allusion from the title. The title came at me indirectly via Peter McLean’s saying in an interview I did with him, something to the effect of answering the questions nature provides.

      I don’t know what your boarding school experience was like, overall, Red, but I think I would have liked attending boarding school at St. Andrew’s. I really like the way they think and their approach towards humanity.

      Thanks. 🙂

  172. @IsaLeeWolf says:

    Such gorgeous photos! I don’t know what it is about piers, they really spark the imagination.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Isa Lee (I hope I’ve got your name right). There is something about piers that endlessly fascinates me.

      Thanks for coming by. Nice to meet you on the A-Zs.

  173. All the reasons I love SoCal, Samantha, and put up with traffic and high-everything prices here. 🙂 I lived in Redondo Beach for five years — on Huntington Lane, off Grand Ave, not far from the Galleria Mall. We had a townhouse there. It was a five-minute drive to the beach and we spent an inordinate amount of time there, either for exercise, pleasure, or at El Torito for beer with chips and salsa. Nowadays Hermosa is overruled by college kids and wannabe poets, and Manhattan is getting very ritzy. As for Redondo, it’s jokingly referred to as Recondo, as so many houses are demolished and turned into condo complexes.
    I have a soft spot for South Bay in my heart. We go for a drive once or twice a year. Thank you for sharing. Lovely to see all the familiar places.

    • sammozart says:

      Ah, El Torito, yes, Silvia. Brings back memories. I think Hermosa was always the hippy, poet place — even some of the streets are named after poets; and, Recondo — so sad that all those charming beach bungalows were lost, all in the sweep of a few years, too. Money. We lived in the Hollywood Riviera mostly. For a while I lived on Elvira Ave., parallel to Broadway and Catalina Ave., just off Knob Hill.

      Yes, all the reasons we love it, despite the traffic and high housing prices.

      • sammozart says:

        Oh, I just had to add this, Silvia — you’ll love it: When we first arrived in SoCal, we rented a two-bedroom garden apt. in the Hollywood Riviera/Redondo, overlooking the Santa Monica Bay, just a couple blocks from the beach, for $127/mo. That was in 1967.

  174. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Ahhhhh, the California piers bring back so many memories. Do you remember the Triathalons… swimming, rowing, and surfing? How about the volleyball contests? The beach is a fun place to be! Thanks for the memories!! 😉

    • sammozart says:

      I had a haircut customer who did the triathlon. More power to him. I do love the piers. I lost a red, dangling earring off the Hermosa Pier when I was looking over the rail and it dropped into the Pacific. I often wonder where it is now. Great memories for me, too, Gwynn.

  175. Pat Garcia says:

    Your night scene photographs just made my day. Especially the one with the sun going down. I think it is Redondo Beach. It is perfect. I needed to see these tonight.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      I guess if you’re talking about the upper ones, that’s Hermosa Beach, the long pier with the really tall pilings, Patti. From that pier one night I donated a red earring to the Pacific. It just fell out of my ear into the water. There is something comforting about those photos. I think I saw The Prophet just there, too, standing on the shore in the near darkness. 🙂 I will have a Redondo “Sunset” — that’s its title — photo coming under “S”. (The lower sunset photos are of the Naples Pier.)

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  176. Fascinating, Samantha. You’re right, the island’s story and history feels like something known only to a private club or cult. The aerial image of the water and domes…amazing, now that I know something about the island, the walking trail gone. I am thinking the island would make an intriguenly fascinating setting for a good mystery or any type of book. Thank you for sharing. I am not in the habit of picking favorite post, but this one’s fascinating.

    • sammozart says:

      Yeah, this is an utterly fascinating story, Silvia, and back when I first heard about it and saw photos, when I was working at that job on Marco, my mind conjured up all sorts of potential mystery stories, as with you, and I’m still inspired. I must confess that after I wrote about this, I had to make a strong effort to pull myself, my mind, away. I just wanted to indulge and sink into it until my novel was finished.

      They talk about Californians being “far out,” but Floridians are way more so. You can do and get away with pretty much what you want in Florida, and nobody says anything. For the rich, you build a solar dome house on an island for the fun of it, and if it sinks, so be it.

  177. Julia says:

    I have never heard of Marco Island before, so thanks for the lovely write up and photo tour. Spending time at the beach is quite nice, and I wish I could get around to it more often.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you for coming by and visiting my blog and virtual beach, Julia. It would be nice to be there on Marco in reality. I think you’d like it if you went.

      Nice to meet you on the A-Zs.

      I’ll come by and visit you now.

  178. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I attempted to leave a comment and then my computer could not find your page, so I’ll try again. The Marcos Island beaches remind me of some of the Mexican beaches that I have seen pictures of, and also some of the Caribbean beaches. Beautiful pristine white sand! Those poor domed homes look DOOMED! You take GORGEOUS pictures! Thanks!

    • sammozart says:

      Well, I didn’t take the photos of Cape Romano and the sinking homes, Gwynn, as you probably know. I’ve never been there, though I have wanted to go ever since I heard about them 20 years ago when they weren’t so far under water. Yes, that part of Florida has a distinct Caribbean and Bahamian appearance and feel — and I would suspect, Cuban, too. Of course, I’ve drunk Cuban coffee in Florida. One of those two-ounce cups keeps you buzzed for days.

  179. Pat Garcia says:

    Beautiful, Samantha. We have several islands in Northern Germany that are similar to Marco. I have had the privilege of going to three of those islands, my favorite being Langeoog.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      In Northern Germany…. Interesting, Patricia. I never would’ve thought. I guess it IS warm enough in the summertime. Long Island. No sinking, I hope. No wonder the Germans like Naples and Marco so much. The Germans are very polite — always say hello and thank you and goodbye.

      And thank you, Patricia, for visiting and for letting me know about Langeoog.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  180. Liz Brownlee says:

    Looks like a colourful place – I read somewhere that people in Florida are ignoring the fact that when the seas rise they will flood – is that true? ~Liz http://www.lizbrownleepoet.com

    • sammozart says:

      Colorful people, that’s for sure, Liz. Re rising seas, read my “O” post, “On Marco Island,” and find out more.

      Thanks for coming by. Nice to meet you on the A-Zs.

  181. Interesting seeing the pictures from a different time, Samantha, particularly accompanied by your descriptions of a place that is no longer there. The villa with the colorful flowers painted on it — so joyous. The view from your mom’s place, so peaceful. I imagine it was lovely spending quality writing time in such a nice place.

    • sammozart says:

      I think I did some of my best writing in Florida, Silvia. I don’t know why that is. I didn’t really like Florida. Yet, maybe it was the clean air that smelled like orange blossoms, the humidity (even though I don’t like humidity) and the relaxed quality of life. Most people there generate enough income during the tourist season to take the summers off.

      We knew that the farm market was temporary. My boss leased the land from a developer who kept testing the wells for salinity.

      Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings lived and wrote in rural Florida, and it seemed just the right atmosphere for her. There’s something about the mysterious goings on in the the swamps that conjures up the imagination.

      Thank you, Silvia.

  182. Pat Garcia says:

    Of course, when I saw the title of this posting, I first thought it was about Naples, or Napoli, Italy. Funny, how our minds play tricks on us. Naples seems to be an interesting place to live. I have been all over the east coast of Florida but never went totally down south of the State or West. I did stay a couple of nights in Pensacola but that was it.
    I enjoyed the photographs and your excerpts. I do believe I must plan for a eight week trip or more in the United States.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Or, next year maybe The Prophet and Child will visit Italy and we’ll travel with them. Actually, there are a lot of Italians, mostly Italian-Americans in Naples. When I was leaving L.A. to go there, an Italian-American I knew said he had lots of relatives there, that he had been there and enjoyed shopping at Publix. :-).

      Of course some of the architecture there is Neopolitan style, but more so Venetian — there’s a Venetian Bay, and largely Spanish. The Old Florida style, which makes the most sense, is disappearing.

      Anyway, here’s to our visiting Napoli one day. Thanks, Patricia.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  183. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Lovely and interesting pictures. You really should be writing for travel magazines. You can inform people about your area. Great post.

    • sammozart says:

      You’re the third person that’s said I should be writing for travel magazines, since I’ve been writing on this A-Z theme. All I need is the funding to travel. I’d love it! What a great career. Funding to travel and take a friend. Let’s picture that. 🙂

  184. I do love Mammoth, Samantha. The winter pictures here bring back memories, as I’ve only been up there in winter, and only for a short time, or so it felt…short. Love looking at the photos and reading the history, much or most of which I didn’t know.

    • sammozart says:

      Mammoth does have an interesting history, Silvia — colorful, like the histories of other places around the state. The gold rush aspect fascinates me. Those ski area photos are old and the sunlight was so bright at that altitude and on the snow, it was hard to get a good picture with my point and shoot camera. But it gives an idea of what the ski area looks like. It’s fun to look at different places in California, I think, even if only in photos at this point. I’ll do a couple more posts on the state.

      Thanks.

  185. susan scott says:

    Just back after Susan Schwartz’s talk, and much to do Samantha. I normally spend several minutes reading/admiring your posts but this time because of lateness of hour and still much to do, I will not do it justice by rushing through it. I’ve admired the photos … and look forward on my return to reading properly! No wi-fi in Botswana .. no comms no nothing! Have got prescheduled posts up. xxxxxx

    • sammozart says:

      Safe and happy travels, Susans. And thank you Susan for coming by and dropping a line.

  186. Pat Garcia says:

    Looking at your photographs, I now know why I love California. If I had stayed in the United States, that’s exactly where I would be. Thank you for sharing so much beauty-. I have a big heart for California.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      You and me both, Patricia — big hearts and preferred place to live in the States. Thank you.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  187. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I think I have mentioned that I have friends living in Big Pine and she talks about meeting her kids in Mammoth when they go snowboarding or skiing. It is fun actually seeing the area instead of guessing what it looks like.

    Great pictures and history. Thanks!!

    • sammozart says:

      Oh, Big Pine. Yes, I have been there. Beautiful area, close to Mt. Whitney. Makes me miss it now that you mention it. Thanks, Gwynn.

  188. Red says:

    I did not know the name of the plateau. I know the river, like most people. I saw the Grand Canyon on a whirlwind “southwest” trip during college, but would love to go back and traverse the canyon on burros (if they still do that).

    • sammozart says:

      Definitely they still traverse the Canyon on burros, Red. I would love to do that, too, but I’m not in good enough shape these days. Twenty years ago, when I took these photos, it would have been easier. On the other hand, maybe this is an incentive to exercise more — a lot more. 🙂

  189. Red says:

    Awww… more home-like images! My favorite pic is the second from the bottom.

    (sidenote, I’ve had issues with accessing your comment section from my work computer, so I’ve been reading, but not showing my presence! – it happens to my husband’s blog, too.)

    • sammozart says:

      I’ve had other readers say they have trouble accessing the comment section, Red. Sometimes they can and sometimes they can’t. It’s mystifying. I’ve tinkered with it and nothing seems to work. May be my WordPress theme or maybe my web host, I don’t know. Anyway, I will come back to visit your site; I’m just running a little behind. Glad you like the Chesapeake City home-like images. It is a picturesque town.

  190. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Hmm, I tried to leave a comment from your Facebook post and Facebook couldn’t find your page. Anyway, I loved the pictures as they remind me of the Seattle Locks. Like Susan, since it is near my dinner time, I was looking for your lunch. Beautiful shots of the area. Thanks!

    • sammozart says:

      Hmm. I wonder what you clicked on, Gwynn. I tried it and found the page just fine. The only pictures of my food I’ve taken are for a recipe book I was planning. Since this lunch on the C&D Canal was nearly 20 years ago, I’m having a hard time remembering what I ate. It was good, though; that I remember.

      So nice to see you come by and visit. It means a lot to me. 🙂 Thanks.

  191. Beautiful. Sounds like a great day spent with your mom. And in October, pleasant weather, too. The photo of the red boat is gorgeous, certainly gallery quality. Looks like a peaceful place to take a walk after a delicious lunch. Thank you for sharing.

    • sammozart says:

      I try to travel mostly in October, Silvia. The weather is great pretty much everywhere at that time of the year, at least in the U.S. Chesapeake City is a peaceful place, a good place to go on a day’s outing.

      Thanks.

  192. Susan scott says:

    I was hoping also for photos of the lunch Samantha I must confess.. Maybe blueberry scones whose recipe you were able to wangle out of the resteranteur? But, never mind, the photos are beautiful. Was the red boat photo that was exhibited, yours? I suspect so .. You really do have an eye. I always have a few scrolls to check them out.

    • sammozart says:

      These are all my photos, Susan, unless I note otherwise. “Red Boat” was one of six of my photos exhibited in the Naples gallery.

      You know, I don’t recall what I had for lunch. Wish I could go back and do it again. This A-Z photo series makes me miss my mother, as you probably know.

      Thanks for the photo compliments.

      Thank you for your dedication staying with us on the A-Zs thus far. I know you are about to embark on your Botswana journey. Safe and happy travels — and lots of photos, please. 🙂

  193. Jean says:

    Beautiful. I love sedimentary rock. The color gradations appeal to me. Thanks for visiting me.

    Jean visiting for the A-Z Challenge. @PolarBear60 on Twitter. http://pmtoo.jeanschara.com/journal

  194. Pat Garcia says:

    I am not sure, but in 2004 I drove up to Queens in New York City from Augusta Georgia to visit my aunt and I do believe I drove over the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal because I had to drive through a corner of Maryland and a corner of Delaware. The photographs are wonderful and are really motivating me to take another long trip throughout the United States.
    Love this.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      When I-95 crosses from Maryland into Delaware, it crosses at the top of the Chesapeake Bay, above the C&D canal; that is, north of it. The dramatic body of water you crossed was at the Conowingo Dam at the mouth of the Susquehanna River, just north of Havre de Grace (pronounced “havver dee grace”), Md., where that river meets the Chesapeake Bay. That’s a pretty area over there, a historic tourist site.

      We have a few road trips planned together, I think, now, Patricia — one here and one in Italy.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  195. Simply gorgeous, Samantha. I’ve never been to the Grand Canyon — a shame — but plan to take my son in the near future. I am just struck by the majesty and beauty of the whole area, all that you show here and describe so well. In looking at these images, particularly the way in which you capture the light in the top three images, I am marveling over and over at how good a photographer you are. Thank you for sharing fantastic your travels.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you for the compliments on my photography, Silvia. In those days I used a camera with film, of course. At midday in elevation that high the sun washes out the color, so I had to wait until near sunset to take the photos, when the hues were deeper and richer, the shadows longer and more dramatic.

      Anyway, definitely take your son. You only live a day’s drive away, so do it while you have the opportunity. And maybe you, your son and your husband are all young enough that you are in good enough shape to ride a mule down the Bright Angel Trail to Phantom Ranch. That would be fun, I should think. 🙂

  196. Pat Garcia says:

    These pictures and the accompanying explanations are beautiful. I have never been to the Grand Canyon. It’s never been high up on my list of things to see, but you have awoken a tiny urge. Maybe, one day I’ll go there.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      First time visitors have an interesting reaction the first time they see the Canyon, Patricia. We’re all just kind of dumbstruck. It’s hard to wrap your mind around such vastness and color. It is absolutely worth seeing, though. And it is beautiful in all its grandeur.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  197. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Oh I LOVED visiting the Grand Canyon. It is SO spectacular! Your pictures are dynamite as I felt I was there! To me, the Canyon is God’s gift to the earth. It is a total wonder. Thanks for the marvelous memories!

    • sammozart says:

      I couldn’t have said it better, Gwynn. The Grand Canyon is awesome in all its grandeur. Thanks!

  198. susan scott says:

    Samantha this is very magnificent – in a post or two before I had a similar thought to what someone else said I forget who that you could be a travel writer …

    Around this time two years ago I was with Susan Schwartz in Phoenix and we went to the Grand Canyon and viewed from I’m unsure which side, east or west … at a guess I would say east side and was truly in awe … she will be here tomorrow early a.m. and I will show her your post. We will remember – she is magnificent.

    Thank you also for the history of land being given and taken – very sacred land which the Havasupi are still maintaining, and the hotel maintaing sustainability –

    Thank you for this beautiful post! Nature, she is wonderful!

    • sammozart says:

      Susan, the person who commented that my stories qualified for great travel writing is Rhonda Gilmour at “Late Blooming Rose.” She commented on my Harpers Ferry post. So, thank you for saying the same. I love traveling and writing stories about a sense of place. I had considered travel writing in the past, and have been toying with tying this series of A-Z posts in with that. I’ll pursue it further when the A-Zs are done. All I need is a digital camera.

      Has it been two years already since you visited Susan in Arizona? No doubt you viewed the Grand Canyon from the South Rim; that’s where most tourists go.

      Yes, a fascinating history the Grand Canyon and surrounds have. Thank you.

  199. Tom Hodukavich says:

    From a site called overfalls.org: William J. Miller, Jr. was born in Wilmington in 1917. After graduating from Drexel University as a Civil Engineer and distinguishing himself during World War II, Mr. Miller returned to Delaware. In 1963 he was appointed the first Executive Director of the Delaware River and Bay Authority, and served until 1991.
    Under his guidance and in 1968, the “Twin Span” of the Delaware Memorial Bridge was opened in 1968 connecting northern Delaware and New Jersey.
    Ferry service began in 1964 under Mr. Miller’s leadership. The first ferry was secured from the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel District. Five new world-class vessels would later make the Cape May-Lewes Ferry System not only a transportation link but a major tourist attraction for the entire Delaware Bay.
    Bill Miller was chosen Drexel’s Man of the Year, Delaware Outstanding Professional Engineer, President of the Delaware Society of Professional Engineers, President of the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association. He has served as Chairman of the March of Dimes, Board of the Blood Bank of Delaware, Delaware AAA, Delaware Safety Council and first chairman of the Council of the Laity of the Diocese of Wilmington.
    He is a distinguished author of two books, Crossing the Delaware and A Ferry Tale. The Cape May Lewes Ferry has carried 13,800,000 vehicles and 42,000,000 passengers since its inception.
    Bill Miller’s efforts have promoted tourism and commerce and he has left a legacy of service to residents along the shores of the Delaware River and Bay.

    • sammozart says:

      This is very interesting, Tom. Thank you. I went to the website and read all about the lightship Overfalls. Although I had heard of the Overfalls and knew it was a tourist attraction, I didn’t know what a lightship was. So, I’m glad to have learned about that as well as about Bill Miller’s books and activities. I know mariners have been glad to have lightships around.

  200. That lake looked beautiful during the winter. Such lovely photos.

    Blog: QueendSheena
    2016 A to Z Participant
    Joy Brigade Minion

  201. Tom Hodukavich says:

    Carol, nice ferry pics, I ride the boats often. In the gift shop you may have seen a book for sale called “A Ferry Tale” that relates the history of this ferry service. It was written by the dad of one of my classmates at Holy Cross Elementary in Dover – he was instrumental in getting the ferry started.

    • sammozart says:

      I don’t ride the ferry as much as I’d like, Tom, disappointingly. Glad you ride it often. Is your friend’s dad’s name William J. Miller, Jr.? I see the book on Amazon, if that’s the one. It would be interesting to read. There is a recent video documentary on the ferry — “Billion Mile Journey, the Cape May-Lewes Ferry,” celebrating 50 years of operation begun July 1, 1964, that I watched just recently on WHYY (PBS). The story is fascinating. I donated one of my photos to the Cape May-Lewes Ferry website about 15 years ago, the last one on this post, that I call “Ferry Wake.” I’m so happy your friend’s dad was instrumental in getting the ferry started — much needed and much fun. Stay tuned for my blog post, “Victorians and Menhadens,” photos of the Cape May Victorian houses and of course the menhaden fishing boats, both of which are so photogenic.

      Thank you for visiting, reading my post and commenting. I appreciate it.

  202. All that open sky, so blue, above those mountains. A lovely place that helps rest the mind with its beauty. Place of inspiration, introspection. The yellow flower and the Tule fog crystals on sagebrush — such contrast. There is nothing like natural beauty, the majesty and bigness of it, to put everything into perspective. The pines remind me a bit of what we saw in Yosemite. Thank you. Happy to have taken a shorty trip to June Lake and Lundy Lake with you.
    Last week we went for a hike up Malibu Canyon, Santa Monica Mountains. Didn’t go all the way up, but high enough on the rocky path where every step was an exercise in balance. We were just commenting, once we reached the top, on the natural beauty here in CA. So many hidden spots.

    • sammozart says:

      You have said that so well, Silvia, painted a beautiful picture. Even just around L.A., how high those mountains are and the hidden beauty they hold.

      Thanks!

  203. Pat Garcia says:

    I am so happy that I am able to comment here now. I tried yesterday but the comment section did not come up. Thanks for your help.

    These pictures remind me of Germany and its trains. If you ever visit Frankfurt, for example, you have to take a ride on the Apple wine train. It is an old train from way back then which has been restored and now rides people through the Apple Wine district of Frankfurt and you drink Apple Wine while riding. I believe you would love it.
    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      I did play around with my site a bit last night, Patricia. I must’ve done something that worked.

      I am sure I would enjoy the Apple Wine train. In movies I have seen some of those German train stations. There’s one, especially, that fascinates me — in Berlin or Munich? I can’t think of the name and maybe that’s changed. But, I would love to travel around Europe by rail. I envy them their rail travel.

      Thanks for stopping by my site. 🙂

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  204. Pat Garcia says:

    Beautiful, Samantha. Simply beautiful. Your blog theme takes me back to the lovely times that I have spent in the regions that you have shown so far. This one takes me back to Monterey and Carmel, 1974. I was stationed in Fort Ord, which was in Monterey, and very close to the Pacific Ocean. I woke up every morning looking at the blue ocean and dreaming. I visited Carmel. There I fell in love with the homes and the many beautiful yards filled with flowers and large trees. I was able to revisit in 2008. It was still beautiful.
    Thank you.
    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      It is beautiful, I agree Patricia. The awesome evidence of the upheaval caused by subduction earthquakes — begun when dinosaurs roamed the area. Dramatic. I wish to visit again.

      Back in those days when you were at Fort Ord, I, too, was waking up every morning looking at the blue Pacific, down in Redondo.

      Thank you for visiting and commenting. It means a lot to me.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  205. Mary Burris says:

    I always thought those rabbitbrush plants were yarrow plants. I am learning something new here! I love the mountains. There is nothing quite like a good majestic peak.

    • sammozart says:

      I thought they were sagebrush flowers, Mary, until I looked them up. I had never heard of rabbitbrush before. Nothing like a majestic peak — you are right. They are awesome.

  206. susan scott says:

    How lovely to see these photos Samantha and take a trip along with you! Those autumnal colours are beautiful – are they really called quaking aspen? June Lake looks and sounds mysterious … and that fog seems to be so low-lying .. and the photo of the crystals on the sagebrush is an award winning photo.

    Thank you so much for the road trip vicariously much enjoyed!

    • sammozart says:

      They are called quaking aspens because the leaves quake — shiver in the breeze. In the autumn it looks like someone is shaking a tree loaded with gold doubloons. Tule fog means ground fog, Susan. Tule is a Mexican-Indian word incorporated into Spanish, meaning low-lying, and used in Northern California. Several scenic loops exist in that area of the Sierra. Since most of those little towns have one way in and out, they built scenic routes as a means of secondary escape routes, since that area is extremely earthquake prone and prone to escaping volcanic gas — and, of course, very deep snowfall. Being a tourist area this is not advertised — just beautiful scenic routes.

      You and I do have our penchant for research. I am fascinated by the geology of that Eastern High Sierra and after my first visit immediately researched more about it, so fascinated was I that I bored people with my geological conversations. 🙂 Given the wherewithal I would move there in an instant — and you could come visit and we’d tour the area.

      Thanks for the compliment on my photo, too. That is one of my favorites. I use it on Christmas cards.

  207. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I never traveled up into that area of California. Your photos are lovely. I have a friend who lives up in that area so now when she talks about it, I will be able to see what she is describing. I still laugh that it actually can snow in California! Beautiful post!

    • sammozart says:

      At an elevation of 14,000 feet, you bet it can snow in California. There are glaciers in the Sierra that never melt, living glaciers that feed the waterfalls year round. My next place to visit is wine country in Calif. Can you believe that I have never been to wine country? 🙂

  208. Beautiful photos, Samantha. From a historical standpoint, just amazing. Can take one back, particularly the top images. Passenger coach looks nice and well maintained, the decor retaining shades of the past. Also the photos of the Amish moving across the countryside, something out of a storybook.
    Amazing to think this has been continuously running, going way back. Can almost close my eyes and imagine it being horse drawn.

    • sammozart says:

      Horse drawn — that’s something, isn’t it Silvia. It is a charming area and I love steam locomotives. Actually, where I live in Delaware, we are surrounded by Amish. I will go to the supermarket and sometimes there will be a horse and buggy hitched to a lamppost. Mennonites do my lawn and have cleaned my house on occasion. They are far more modern than the Amish, though — they drive cars and use cell phones and computers — just can’t go online or watch TV.

  209. Gwynn Rogers says:

    You live in such a historically fascinating area. Plus, the culture of the Amish peoples reminds me of the way this country started. I love your photos. Thanks.

    • sammozart says:

      The Amish are interesting, Gwynn. The more updated Mennonites are my gardeners and they often bring an Amish with them — pleasant, friendly people, industrious, their lives so simple. Pennsylvania is a beautiful state with its mountains, farmlands and rolling hills. Thanks for the photo compliment.

  210. susan scott says:

    Wonderful photos of the Iron Horse – so elegant -and the Amish horse and wagon and countryside Samantha thank you. Is it really the only operational wooden dining car in the US? I hope to watch the clip later …

    I want to check out our Blue Train (Rovos Rail) and see whether that is a wooden one … I know it rides from Cape Town to Pretoria; and is luxury all the way and quite out of my reach 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      As far as I know and can research, Susan, the Strasburg Rail Road has the only operational wooden dining car in the United States. There are many wooden train cars, some of which are operational, but apparently what the Strasburg Rail Road claims about their operating wooden dining car is true.

      I looked at Rovos Rail briefly via Google online and saw a steam locomotive but no wooden cars, which by no means indicates they have none; I just wanted a quick look at a rail line I hadn’t heard of. A safari train journey might be interesting. That is, as long as I could stay inside the train, I’d feel safe (as long as the windows were closed). The Strasburg RR, though, is no luxury train, just a fun day trip for families. The Amish don’t like their pictures taken, but this Amish just happened to be in the farm scene and at a distance. 🙂

  211. Gorgeous place, and to stand there and think of its past, all the history. Moving, I’m sure. Thomas Jefferson was right. Also, the color and vitality come across well in your photos. Thank you for taking us there with the lovely descriptions and images.

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Silvia. Harpers Ferry exudes atmosphere and sense of history. You can almost feel John Brown and Thomas Jefferson and all the others standing there right beside you. Harpers Ferry is one of those rare places that calls you to come be there.

  212. Those are some really beautiful photos.

    Blog: QueendSheena
    2016 A to Z Participant
    Joy Brigade Minion

  213. Great pictures and interesting information. I love history, especially of WV. My family is from there!

    Happy A to Z ing! Yay, the weekend’s here! 🙂
    Ninga Minion @YolandaRenee from
    Defending The Pen
    Parallels
    Murderous Imaginings

    • sammozart says:

      West Virginia is a beautiful state, from what I’ve seen; I would like to see more. Nice to meet you on the A-Zs, Yolanda Renee. Thank you for coming by.

  214. Red says:

    I’ve been there! I didn’t see much though. I had ambitions to be the “camping” aunt – take all my nieces/nephews on a camping trip when they reached a certain age. I enjoyed camping as a kid, so thought that would be fun. I bought a dome tent, a small cooler, coleman lantern, etc. I decided to start camping regularly so that I could build the habit and re-learn skills. First trip: Harpers Ferry (I was living in southern PA). Just a weekend with no plans.
    I got poison ivy. Or oak. I don’t know which, but the first night was misery, so I packed up first thing the next morning and went home to nurse my itchy skin. Never actually got INTO Harpers Ferry! Thanks for showing me what I missed!

    • sammozart says:

      What a shame, Red, that you missed touring Harpers Ferry. I would have headed home right away, too, with that itch. Luckily I’ve avoided poison ivy and oak so far, but did get into a patch of nettles one time. Glad I could show you some pictures of what you missed. Maybe there’ll be a next time, but no camping. 🙂

  215. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I love your historic area. It is so intriguing and beautiful. Thanks for the history and the incredible pictures.

    At least Facebook notified me of your post!

    • sammozart says:

      I have to agree with Thomas Jefferson, Gwynn — not that that’s difficult –, it is an especially beautiful area. It’s one of those places that holds a meaningful, sensual feeling. Yes, thank goodness for FB. One good thing I can say about it is that a lot of people, mostly non-commenting phantoms, though, have seen my posts via my FB notifications.

  216. Pat Garcia says:

    When I think about Harper’s Ferry, I think about John Brown and his raid. The abolitionist belongs to my hero clan. I have a very good friend who is from West Virginia. He and his wife came back to visit Germany after thirty years last year and stayed in my home. I also have had the privilege of driving through West Virginia several times and also stopping and resting there.
    Your pictures bring back those memories.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, John Brown was a fanatical abolitionist, Patricia. It’s sad he met his end the way he did. I think I do recall your saying your visiting friends last year were from West Virginia. I’d like to see more of that state; I’ve seen only the Harpers Ferry corner.

      Speaking of abolitionists, one of the main reasons I volunteer at the Smyrna Opera House is that Frederick Douglass spoke there. That’s quite a legacy.

  217. I love good travel writing, and this definitely qualifies. Thanks for sharing your lovely photos, too. I haven’t yet had the chance to visit much of the Eastern U.S., but Harper’s Ferry is on my list of must-see places. Greetings from Tacoma, WA.
    @RhondaGilmour from
    Late Blooming Rose

    • sammozart says:

      I’m glad you think my writing here is good travel writing, Rhonda. That fluffs up my ego considerably. 🙂 Greetings to you in Tacoma. One part of the U.S. I haven’t visited is the Pacific Northwest. That is on my list.

      Nice to meet you on the A-Zs.

      Samantha

  218. susan scott says:

    A lovely post Samantha, thank you for sharing your lovely family with us. If they make me smile they must make you smile even more so, relishing those memories! Your Mom and daughter are truly lovely as is the in-between one – you!!

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, they were lovely to travel with, Susan. Many enjoyable moments. Even during my mother’s dementia, she would sit with a map open in her lap and plot a trip. Bittersweet.

  219. susan scott says:

    Stupendous is the right word Samantha .. I too would have run around wanting to capture the moments! The history is so interesting thank you.

    • sammozart says:

      Most importantly is the FEEL of the place, Susan. It has a mystical quality, though very different from that of the Chiricahua Mountains. It’s interesting that of these places I write, Teddy Roosevelt and Thomas Jefferson were involved — in the planning, in ideas about what these sites should become to benefit the expansion of America.

  220. Red says:

    Aw, thank you! This was so nostalgic for me. I lived in Lewes, DE, and took that ferry trip – maybe three or four times (so, six or eight, including return). If you go during the heat of summer, you can see jellyfish over the side.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank goodness I didn’t take the ferry during jellyfish season, Red. Ick. But I am fascinated by the seagulls who follow the boat to get all the passengers’ food. 🙂

      Thanks.

  221. Beautiful family photos, Samantha. Lovely smiles. Our world–so much to see, interesting places. ‘Chocolate place’ is the perfect reference, with all the beautiful sites in memory. Love that you went to the cemetery, searching for possible traces of yourself from a previous life. 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      It does intrigue me, Silvia, that I am impelled to look for myself in a previous life in Charleston and no place else. Maybe it’s just the air, the climate. It gets kind of a hold on you.

  222. Red says:

    I love all the pictures and reminiscing. Obviously, travel has been a pretty big part of my life, too.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I have been to some beautiful places across this country, Red, but you’ve been to and lived in some pretty exotic ones. Fascinating. I do love to travel.

  223. Pat Garcia says:

    Delaware is beautiful. I have an acquaintance that was born and raised in Delaware. His family is still there. He’s married to a German woman and they live in Germany. I have drive
    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChangen through Delaware on the way to New York but never stopped to look around.
    Excellent post.

    • sammozart says:

      Delawareans do get around, Patricia. It amazes me — so few a population get to so many places.

      I’m so glad you’ve come by to visit me here at my blog as I write from Delaware. It means a lot to me. Thank you.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  224. Pat Garcia says:

    These pictures bring back so many beautiful memories of my trip to the USA in 2008. I took six weeks to drive across the country from the west coast to the east coast and it was beautiful.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

  225. Pat Garcia says:

    I have had the privilege to stay almost a week in Arizona, vacationing and driving around in 2008 and I loved it. Falstaff, Phoenix, and ll of the other places that I managed to see were places that I knew I could live in.
    It was a wonderful time for me.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Patricia. Wouldn’t be fun to return and meet up there one day.

      Shalom.

  226. Pat Garcia says:

    I was a big fan of Ed McMahon and Joe Paterno also. The scenery is beautiful and shows a side of life where one can sit back and relax. I like the houses also. They remind me of the houses that I lived around in Blythe, Georgia. Your pictures bring back pleasant memories of the past.
    Thank you.

    Visiting from the A to Z Blog Challenge.

    Shalom,
    Patricia @ EverythingMustChange

    • sammozart says:

      It is so relaxing there, Patricia. You feel like you haven’t a care in the world. I’m glad the photos bring back happy memories for you. One of the beaches I was on was in Georgia — St. Simon’s Island. We lived there for four months — Feb.-May 1967 — when my husband was taking a Navy course at Brunswick. St. Simon’s was beautiful then, and they had a little library on the island, which I loved visiting.

      Shalom.
      Samantha

  227. susan scott says:

    ha ha re: me watching the animals go by (if a hippos or croc doesn’t get me) xx

  228. susan scott says:

    O to sail on a ferry boat and watch the world go by! These are lovely photos Samantha thank you so much!

    • sammozart says:

      Won’t you be sailing down some river in Botswana soon, Susan, as the wild animals watch you go buy…? 🙂

      Thanks.

  229. Love those photos. I want to ride a ferry.

    • sammozart says:

      Next year, Sheena-kay, I’ll see what I can do about providing an actual ferryboat ride on the A-Zs. That would be cool, huh. 🙂

  230. A most enjoyable photo essay, Samantha. The map helps in giving a good understanding of the area. This west coast girl only sees such scenes in movies – car and passenger traveling together yet separate. Might have to add such a trip to the list. Thank you.

    • sammozart says:

      When I was little, Silvia, my grandfather took me for round-trip rides on a passenger ferry that crossed the Delaware River between Phila. and Camden, N.J. That started the whole thing with me, I think. Nearer to you, of course, are the ferries in Seattle. Our friend Gwynn rides the ferry all the time, as you probably know.

  231. Mary Burris says:

    Call me crazy, but I’m a sucker for Ferry Boat rides. Whenever I visit my brother in Staten Island, I make sure I get at least one ride to and from Manhatten on the ferry.

    Mary
    #AtoZChallenge F is for Fitzgerald

    • sammozart says:

      Yeah, I like ferries, too, Mary. Always have since I was a kid. There’s something exciting about riding on a ferryboat.

  232. Gwynn Rogers says:

    You have a beautiful area. Your ferry is much smaller than ours. Most of our ferry trips to town are about 20 minutes except the Bremerton/Seattle run, which is about an hour. Then of course going up to Vancouver or Orcas Island in the San Juans is longer. I love your pictures.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gwynn. I thought you’d appreciate the ferry story. I have loved ferries since I was a child. My grandfather used to take me on a round-trip passenger ferry ride across the Delaware River between Phila. and Camden, N.J., when I was quite young.

  233. Gorgeous images, Samantha, and what interesting stories. Flying sure was a whole different experience back in those years, perhaps a much more pleasurable one compared to today’s long lines and such. A great way to see the country. A way to collect memories and stories from various parts and people. Love the image of the cabin, the lake. So much natural beauty up in those mountains, balm for the heart and soul. As a little girl, I wanted to be a flight attendant one day, to travel. It never happened, but I remember those vivid thoughts like yesterday.

    • sammozart says:

      I love to fly but haven’t flown in years, now, Silvia. Commercial flying is like flying on a city bus, though. Not fun. I was lucky to work for a commuter airline. I much prefer small planes. We flew out of Imperial Terminal. That was even easier. I was going through the interview steps to become a flight attendant for MGM Grand Air when the airline I worked for gave me a big promotion and raise, so I stayed put. I do love to travel and love the High Sierra.

  234. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I have a friend who lives up near Mammoth and her kids go snowboarding there each year. It is fun to see pictures of the area. Now I see what she sees… except in all the years since these pictures were taken I’ll bet the area has changed and grown.

    Your pictures are lovely and very interesting. Thanks!

    • sammozart says:

      It’s grown a bit, Gwynn, but not changed a lot. It’s still the beautiful, pristine Sierra. I have a couple more posts upcoming on the area. What’s changed this year is that they have a lot of snow on the Mountain and they’re thankful for that.

  235. Samantha, this is such a treat. I’ve never been to Delaware. A file clerk in our office is from DE, and one of the running jokes, as I understand, is that most residents have at one point or other met the Biden family. I’m thinking it’s just a joke, but it says something about the spirit, size, and closeness of people. Love the Opera House picture, and your brother’s place. All images, really, so beautiful. Such a pictoresque place. Thank you for taking us there.

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Silvia. Your coworker probably laughs at all the people who ask her if Delaware is a state and if it’s in New England or next to Indiana. As small as this state is I’m always amazed that I run into Delawareans everywhere, leading me to wonder if there’s anybody left in the state. It’s quite a culture contrast from Calif. in many ways. Everybody knows everybody here, so you have to be careful what you say; on the other hand, the red tape is negligible and that’s refreshing. I never met Joe Biden, but he was in my stepbrother’s U. of Del. class, and he grew up a mile down the road from me, but since he went to Catholic school and I to public our paths never crossed.

  236. susan scott says:

    Just lovely Samantha thank you – so genteel and gentle, romantic somehow – as if poetry could be written on the bench or meandering through those pastoral scenes – or gazing through those magnificent windows of the Smyrna Opera House – or walking through the Green Door .. and composing music ..

    • sammozart says:

      You said it all, Susan, pretty much as this area inspires me to do. 🙂 Thanks.

  237. Gwynn Rogers says:

    What a beautifully diverse and charming area! I love your pictures and the history of your area. How lovely! Thanks for the view of your world.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gwynn. I am appreciating what I have, and it’s lovely to be able to share it with others. Delawareans do get out: small as the state is, and considering many don’t even know it’s a state let alone where it is, I run into Delawareans nearly everywhere I go. You’d wonder that there’s anyone left here.

  238. susan scott says:

    This is a beautiful piece of writing thank you Samantha. Such a vivid appreciation of land and rock, stone and plant. The spirit of Geronimo came through to me. What a tragic story, and sad that he died while still a POW. What a striking man.

    I loved also to try to say the names – Chricahua – like the wind somehow … and others too. Thank you for this slice of life. It’s spiced up my morning 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      I thought of you when I wrote this one, Susan. I thought you’d like it. Chiricahua is pronounced “cheer-ih-cah-wah” with a mild accent on the third syllable. And, yes, it does sound like the wind, I think, too. Cochise is “co-CHEES.” Maybe you and Susan can visit there next time you are in the States. And, wouldn’t I love to join you!

  239. Very scenic. – Joy Brigade Minion

  240. Red says:

    Such cool views! I love the ocotillo cactus.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, wide open spaces and fascinating rock formations, Red. I just had to get a photo of that ocatillo.

      Thanks!

  241. Red says:

    I’ve driven north through NJ to get to New York, New England, and once or twice, a friend’s parents’ house in northern New Jersey. My NJ beach experience is simply Cape May, when I would take the ferry across from Lewes, DE.
    But I don’t have the length of nostalgia you seem to. Sounds delightful.

    • sammozart says:

      I’ll do two upcoming posts on Cape May, Red — one on the Victorian homes and in a couple days one on the Cape May-Lewes Ferry. I grew up outside Philadelphia and have lived in Delaware, as I do now — so I have spent lots of time on the South Jersey beaches.

      Thanks for coming by.

  242. Red says:

    The desert is its own beauty!
    And I love the images of the Horseshoe Café, too.
    (found you through AtoZ, and as a fellow traveler and former Delawarean, I’m starting at the beginning of your alphabet!)

    • sammozart says:

      I’m glad you like the images of the Horseshoe Cafe. To me, it is quintessential Southern Arizona, especially the high desert around Benson. It holds the aura of the romance of the Wild West for me.

      Thank you for coming by, Red. Nice to meet a former Delawarean. I have lived in California and other places, yet run into Delawareans so often, I couldn’t help wondering if there was anyone left in Delaware, it’s such a small state.

  243. So interesting, Samantha, reading about settlers, Geronimo, down to the elevations and climate. Arizona sure seems to have it all. In summertime, the heat, in most places, chases the residents out of the state, and you give a good example of the winter status in the elevated areas. Wide open roads hold such an appeal to me, still, even after all these years in CA. Having grown up in Europe where everything is so crowded, I do appreciate wide open spaces. Thank you for sharing your trip with us.

    • sammozart says:

      I asked some Japanese once why they came to live in California, Silvia: “Because it’s big,” they said. I agree. Crowded as L.A. and Orange counties are, and up around San Francisco, California still has its beautiful coastline and wide open spaces. Lots of Westerns have been filmed up in the Sierra, as you probably know — Gene Autry movies, the TV show “Bonanza,” and Clint Eastwood movies, to name a few — and Roy Rogers in Arizona.

      At least it’s a dry heat on the Arizona and California deserts; nevertheless, too hot for me — except up around Mammoth — that’s OK.

      I’ve never been to Europe. Still hoping to go someday. The parts I see of it are so clean and ordered and beautiful.

  244. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Arizona does have a phenomenal history. I loved seeing the cliff dwellings up outside of the Flagstaff area. I enjoyed the Native Americans’ baskets and jewelry too… so beautiful. It is amazing that peoples could live in such a bleak area.

    • sammozart says:

      I’ve seen some ancient Indian dwellings but have never been to Canyon de Chelly, Gwynn. The cliff dwellings fascinate me. I imagine those people were in pretty good shape. I do own some Navajo jewelry, and, I think, some Hopi, too. The Navajo, Hopi and Havasupai and probably other tribes still grow crops in Arizona. So does white man. The state isn’t as totally bleak as you might imagine.

      You know, as Turquoise Roo, I have to own some turquoise.

  245. Paula says:

    I love the beach. I have been to some fabulous beaches, but never to these two!

    Paula from
    Smidgen, Snippets, & Bits

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks for coming by, Paula. I’m glad I was able to provide you with views of some new beaches. 🙂

  246. I have great respect for the saguaro cactus. Two hundred years to full growth for a cactus? Amazing! The stories if it could talk indeed.

    You have been minioned by Sheena-kay Graham
    Proud Minion of the Joy Brigade

    • sammozart says:

      It is amazing, Sheena-kay — 200 years. I had know idea that saguaro I stood before was so old. I only found out about their slow growth and how long they live when I researched them for this story.

      Thanks for coming by.

  247. sammozart says:

    That’s what we used awnings for, Susan, to keep the house cool in summer. People still use them here and there, but they must be cloth — in the old days, canvas — to be ecologically compliant. When I was growing up, there was no air conditioning. People went to the movies often just to get cool, because movie theaters were “air cooled.” The Strand Theater on the Ocean City boardwalk is one such old theater. I don’t remember if it was air cooled, because normally the sea breezes keep the boardwalk cool.

    The seagull is on the signs marking the Ocean Highway, a coastal route that travels along the islands and across the inlet bridges. It’s not a major highway, but rather a slower, scenic route. I don’t have a photo of the sign.

    Since Ocean City occupies that whole island and has for generations, most of us are not aware that the island is named Peck’s Beach Island. I wasn’t; I learned that in my research.

    I once considered living in Ocean City (where I had spent many happy summers), but moved to Redondo Beach, Calif., instead. 🙂

  248. Robert Price says:

    The beaches along the Atlantic shores are most beautiful in the fall. You have represented them well on this April showers of a day.

    Arggggh matey,

    aRgggggh

    • sammozart says:

      A lot of places are most beautiful in the fall, R. I took most of my photos shown throughout this A-Z theme in the fall. I like the warm colors and the pleasant, crisp temperatures. 🙂 Thanks.

  249. Gwynn Rogers says:

    What incredible photos and memories. The beach on your side of the country is so unique and interesting compared to the bare Southern California beaches! It is intriguing to me that towns have similar or same names on both coasts, as we have a Port Townsend an Historic logging and fishing town on the edge of the straight of the San Juan de Fuca and the Puget Sound.

    Thanks for sharing your lovely area and the history.

    • sammozart says:

      We’re on the Eastern (Atlantic) Seaboard here, Gwynn, which is low-lying and flat. The coast along the South Jersey shore and down to Florida drops off gradually. The beaches in South Jersey have to continually be replenished because the sand gets washed away, especially during Nor’easters — unlike the West Coast, which drops off dramatically. Santa Cruz, though, has a nice boardwalk — I’ve always wanted to visit there.

      We don’t have to travel far west of here to be in the higher elevation Piedmont Plateau, the foothills of the Appalachians.

      Each coast has its beauty, I think. And, we’d better appreciate these scenes before they disappear as the glaciers melt.

      We even have a Townsend right up the road from me in Delaware — pronounced with the accent on the second syllable, as we have discussed.

  250. susan scott says:

    Lovely to wander through your memories and photographs Samantha thank you! I found some of the places on the map you mention eg. Pecks’ beach named after whaler, Townsends Inlet but the seagull was not forthcoming in any way?

    I also like striped awnings – I’d never thought of them in terms of keeping things cool but now I can ‘see’ that ..

    • sammozart says:

      That’s what we used awnings for, Susan, to keep the house cool in summer. People still use them here and there, but they must be cloth — in the old days, canvas — to be ecologically compliant. When I was growing up, there was no air conditioning. People went to the movies often just to get cool, because movie theaters were “air cooled.” The Strand Theater on the Ocean City boardwalk is one such old theater. I don’t remember if it was air cooled, because normally the sea breezes keep the boardwalk cool.

      The seagull is on the signs marking the Ocean Highway, a coastal route that travels along the islands and across the inlet bridges. It’s not a major highway, but rather a slower, scenic route. I don’t have a photo of the sign.

      Since Ocean City occupies that whole island and has for generations, most of us are not aware that the island is named Peck’s Beach Island. I wasn’t; I learned that in my research.

      I once considered living in Ocean City (where I had spent many happy summers), but moved to Redondo Beach, Calif., instead. 🙂

  251. Ah, I found your AZs, so happy. Thank you for writing back, and for your help. The Wild Wild West sure in a very interesting place. I drove through Arizona a couple of times and was always enchanted by the wide-open skies and freedom they evoke. There are a few similar places in California, where I live, but there is a certain character to Arizona all unique. Thank you for sharing images and thoughts from your trip, Samantha. Very inspiring.

    • sammozart says:

      It’s kind of you to come back and comment on my Arizona post, Silvia. It IS the wide open spaces of Arizona that I love the best, not places like Sedona. But, I have found some in California, too, and I will be posting some of those photos in a couple of upcoming blogs. Yes, Arizona is a character unique to itself — maybe another reason I like it so much…?

  252. Samantha, such a beautiful way with words you have. Storytelling, a passion, a gift a way of life, is indeed one of the most important aspects of our lives, going way back to the beginning of time. The Sultan’s story is a great illustration of the power of story, and your emotional output throughout very compelling. I came looking for your AZs, found only a header as of now, and am thrilled to have found this story of storytelling and more. Thank you.
    Silvia.
    https://silviatomasvillalobos.wordpress.com/

    • sammozart says:

      It seems meant to be, Silvia, after your “A” post that you should encounter my “storytelling” post. It hadn’t occurred to me that when bloggers click on my ID website link that they’d come to my static home page and not to my most recent post. My recent posts are linked to via my right sidebar. But, anyhow, I changed that around so that now when you click on my website ID you will come to my most recent post.

      I’m glad you came by, and thanks for reading my very long post and for your lovely comment.

      Samantha

  253. Mary Burris says:

    I’ve always wanted to visit Arizona, but I’d have to stick to the higher elevation areas as I don’t think I’d be able to handle the heat very well.

    Mary
    Twitter: @KnottyMarie
    Literary Gold
    Jingle Jangle Jungle

    • sammozart says:

      At least it’s a dry heat, Mary. 🙂 In general I prefer higher elevations; I just feel better when I’m high, as it were. So, when I visit the desert, it’s usually high desert and in the cooler seasons.

      Thanks for coming by!

  254. susan scott says:

    Ah lovely Samantha! Was it two years ago this time round that I was in Arizona? yes it was – susan schwartz and I did a collab on the A-Z. We did some driving around and it was wonderful and I saw the suguaro en route to the Grand Canyon. Those open skies, the air …

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I agree, Susan — those wide open spaces. Two years since you’ve been there, 20 since I have. Hard to believe. Time to climb into the saddle and return, I reckon.

  255. susan scott says:

    Samantha, I’ve just got out the bath and was going to write to you to say where are you on the A-Z. Glad to see you’ve got one up on Arizona – popping over in a minute ..

  256. Robert Price says:

    Cool! Congrats on your first A-Z this season!

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, R. The first step on my ride through the purple sage, and, so, on to hitch up at the next post.

  257. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Arizona is an interesting area. I prefer the Sedona and Flagstaff areas to Tucson and Phoenix, but it is amazing wherever you go. Thanks for the interesting post.

    • sammozart says:

      Believe it or not, Gwynn, I have never been to Sedona. I have a post coming up later about the Flagstaff area. Thanks! I’ll mosey over to see you shortly. 🙂

  258. Thank you for the beautiful photos in Arizona. It makes me want to hop on a plane and fly to Tucson straight away.!

  259. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha … short and simple – also they’ll be good learning curves about places or areas we can look up ..

    I’m sure I’ll enjoy your A-Z … cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Hilary. So nice to see you here. I doubt few of my photos will be as stunning as yours of Cornwall, but I hope they will make a nice tour for those who haven’t seen parts of the U.S.

      Of course, I am looking forward to reading your A-Z posts — bound to be fascinating. Meanwhile, re Cornwall, presently I am contenting myself watching “Doc Martin.” Such wild and beautiful scenery, I can see how Daphne du Maurier was inspired.

      Cheers,
      Samantha/Carol

  260. Robert Price says:

    Just stopped in to see what condition your condition is in.

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      Oh, hello, R. Doing well. Haven’t posted lately because I was arranging drop cloths for Moriarty while he was painting a mural on the folly wall a la della Francesca and now he’s off at zither camp.

      Thanks for stopping by. Come back soon and see the mural. 🙂

      Samantha

  261. What a majestic waterfall. Can you imagine the people who first saw that? What must they have thought?

  262. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi,
    I couldn’t get the webcam link that you printed in the blog but that is okay. The article gave me a great picture of water falling over rocks. Sometimes, the GEMA, something similar to ASCAP that protects the rights of authors, photographers and filmmakers prohibits us from seeing video clips that have not been registered at GEMA.

    However, I love the picture. It is wonderful.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      I don’t know why the webcam wouldn’t work, Patricia. Maybe it’s an overseas thing. I think Susan had a problem with it, too. It’s a nonprofit that offers it, the Yosemite Conservancy, so it should be available, for fundraising purposes. It could have to do with the functioning of the Adobe Flash Player, too.

      Anyway, the image shows the contrast between my spring photo when the snow is melting and now in August with the falls dried to a trickle.

      I do appreciate your reading and commenting on all my 5 Day posts, dear Patricia. Thanks for taking the time. And I have written you some long replies. I can’t resist when one story leads to another. 🙂

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  263. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi,
    Your pictures and the stories that stem from them are very interesting. I have learned something new. I had no idea that Delaware had the oldest schrooner. I thought the oldest was in Louisiana.
    Thank you so much.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Specifically, Patricia, the Maggie is “the oldest continuously working Delaware Bay oyster schooner under sail in the United States.” It’s important to be specific about that. I researched her history, captain lineage, and history of oystering on the bay all the way back to the day she was built and commissioned. Utterly fascinating. She’s never been out of commission, rare in itself. Clearly there exist other types of schooners that are older.

      I was working in a hair salon one cold, blustery, sunny January day in 2004 when a guy came into the shop and said he wanted his ponytail colored green. “I can’t wait to hear what the guys on the boat say tomorrow,” he said. It was too windy to be out on the bay that day. I asked what kind of a boat; he told me about the Maggie. I asked my newspaper editor if I could write a story on that. He agreed. The story expanded to three parts, and including horseshoe crab conservation, which the editors called “the fish package.” I met Jean and Thumper and through them a circle of really special friends, good friends to this day, including Michael Oates (http://302stories.com), who has made several video documentaries on the Maggie, Delaware Bay oystering and horseshoe crab conservation..

      Stories and stories and stories come from this one green ponytail in the hair salon incident.

      Thanks!

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  264. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi,

    This picture is relaxing. It reminds me of Monterey. I lived there when I was stationed at Fort Ord. The fort no longer exists. It is sinking into the Pacific. I went back in 2008 and was sad to see that happening. However, I enjoyed being stationed there. My room at the brand new barracks built for us looked out onto the Pacific and every morning I would get up and see the ocean. It was a wonderful time.

    Thank you for sharing your memories of Santa Monica. I was never there but I can imagine its beauty and feel the essence of it being home for you.

    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Beautiful as Redondo, the Palos Verdes Peninsula and Southern California are, Patricia, Monterey has a more dramatic, stunning beauty. I envy your getting up every morning and seeing the ocean.

      The Navy took us to Calif. Our first apartment had a patio over a three car garage, with a view of the whole Santa Monica Bay coastline; but, interestingly, we moved there in June — totally new to SoCal. I looked out over the ocean each day and saw the sea mist, having retreated early in the morning, sitting out on the horizon. I got up one morning in October, and, lo, there were the Santa Monica Mountains and Malibu to the north and out to the southwest, Catalina Island. My first view. It’s as if at certain times of the year they set them out there for all to see. 🙂

      Thanks! And I didn’t know Fort Ord was gone.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

      • Pat Garcia says:

        Yes, my dear. It is sinking into the Pacific Ocean, and I feel so bad about that. That was my first duty station in the United States and the last duty station before I volunteered to come to Europe and landed in Frankfurt, Germany In October 1974.

        Amazing for me was the early mornings at Ord. They were cold, even in July/ August, but by 10 am the sun was high and it was hot. I learned at Ord to always take a jacket with me in the evening because the temperature would drop dramatically because of the Pacific.

        Reading this post made me look back and see that I have been allowed to travel to many places within the United States and also here in Europe. Sometimes I am not fully conscious of what a blessing that is, but reading your post made me aware of how wonderful it is as I re-connected with Ft. Ord and thought, Oh yes, I remember when….

        Your articles revived the memories that I have of California and its beauty.

        Thank you.
        Shalom,
        Patricia

        • sammozart says:

          Yes, ah those jacket nights. I do miss it all, too, Patricia. I think I wrote somewhere that homes on the western side of the Palos Verdes Peninsula are sliding, too. They have to sometimes weekly replace portions of Palos Verdes Drive West, that runs along there, because parts of the road slide leaving a gap between that section and the next. And the repaired road is very bumpy. You have to drive really slow.

          You are so blessed to have traveled so much and now to be in Europe.

          Shalom,
          Samantha

  265. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi,
    Hannah Whiteall Smith was also a part of the friends and she wrote a book that is still being read by some people to this day. I have read her book, The Christian Secret of a Happy Life, and marvelled at her wisdom. I believe she was born in 1832 in Germantown, Penn. (Not sure about that).
    Thank you for highlighting this in your 5 Day Challenge. Many people are unaware of the number of people that helped with the Underground Railroad. Many people of my colour survived and were not recaptured or hung because of the people who were willing to risk there lives to help..
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      The name Hannah Whiteall Smith is familiar, Patricia. I may have encountered her in one of my readings or video documentaries. I try to read and watch everything I can on the slaves, bolitionists and the Underground Railroad. There are alcoves in walls of buildings in our town, and buildings, that are believed to have been on the Network to Freedom, though nothing has yet been proved.

      This is an integral and monumental part of our history that of course we weren’t taught in school. I have William Still’s book (the abridged version) and a few related others here in my home library. How brave and wise those people were. I am awed.

      As an aside, Germantown is a section in the northwest area of Phila., the “Quaker City.” My paternal great grandparents lived there for a time. Though my great grandparents died before I was born, I remember as a small child hearing my grandparents discuss the Civil War. They must have heard stories from my great grandparents, who were born in the 1850s. I was too young to understand or recall what they discussed. Too bad there are no hidden tapes. 😉

      The photo of the space under the Friends Meeting House here doesn’t do it justice. You can’t stand up in it. It is very small. I held my film camera at the opening and fortunately got this good picture.

      Nor did I know, I must add, that I grew up on land that was part of Thornfield, the Garrett farm. Of course, many things in the area are named Garrett, including Garrett Road, that we traveled often; yet I didn’t know at that time who Thomas Garrett was. Even though we lived on what once was his family land and I attended school on that land, we never studied him. Also, the Methodists and others did much to help the abolitionist cause, but that wasn’t the focus of my story here.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  266. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi,
    I can honestly say Bodie would not be a place I would settle down in or a place where I would have desired to be born. It is much too cold and since I have an intense dislike for cold weather, I wouldn’t go there.
    Thank you for the pictures, the history and the film clippings.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Bodie’s great in the summertime, Patricia, but, as with you, I would not like to be there in the winter. It just goes to show, some people will do anything for gold.

      So glad you took the time out of your full itinerary to come by and visit Bodie on my blog. 🙂

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  267. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – well I’m going to say ‘yes’ I will post some pics on my return and some history of Herstmonceux; and ‘no’ – it isn’t ‘a castle’ in the true sense – it is not in a sensible position for defence, and was built for style and expression, rather than as a castle per se. I nearly got the details all correct in the post I wrote about it under my H in 2012 A-Z Challenge … but will amend that slightly anon … I hadn’t visited then.

    Thirdly – I don’t want to surprise you too much – you may never have been to a proper castle .. but I wrote about 23 of them in the 2012 Challenge; XYZ were various informatory posts … I selected castles that were different in character from the norm and the expected – eg Windsor and the Tower of London … I did do Windsor – under Q for Queen’s Castle …

    Should you remotely wish to start at A – here’s the link and you can select from the other castles!! http://positiveletters.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/is-for-alfreds-castle-berkshire.html – or see the summary at the end under Z – but I left out the photos of the castles and included others in the surrounding areas … it is long! Mind you the weekend is upon us …….????

    Cheers and I’ll await your comment on this! Take care – til anon – Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Oh, I must visit these castles via your blog, Hilary! Thanks for letting me know and providing the link. Just short of Harry Potter, wouldn’t it be nice to click on a link and physically arrive at the physical place where we want to go. Ah, well, I’ll put that on the list for my next lifetime.

      Cheers.
      Samantha

  268. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – my dotage is a-creeping up .. but who knows! The idea and thought is inspiring … off to see a Castle now … Herstmonceux … has an interesting history and though it’s nearby I’ve never been – been to the astronomical bit (Observatory) .. but am looking forward to a meander in Elizabethan gardens, a tour of the castle and generally a good look round …

    Enjoy your day – cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — You will take photos, right? And post them on your blog, with a story?

      What a wonderful day you will have (or have had by this hour). I have never been in a castle, an actual castle centuries old, with turrets and such.

      Enjoy!

      Cheers
      Samantha

  269. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha … I was too lazy to look up close … I would have known the trees weren’t pines – and did know .. as Yosemite is in the west … so the trees had to be ‘otherwise’ .. ie sequoias, cedars … and perhaps pines .. who knows.

    In 1978 before I went to South Africa a couple of weeks later … I flew out to NY for a wedding of a friend in the Cathedral of the Pines – probably New Hampshire .. but I remember an avenue as per your picture … with a ‘smallish’ clearing … some huge trunks and pine needles everywhere .. that formed the basis of the Church … where they married. The pics I found are not as my memory serves me … somewhere I may have some photos – where .. is anyone’s guess!

    Yes I’d love to come over and spend time with you .. and see Yosemite – must be incredible … one day perhaps – if I haven’t hit my complete dotage by then!!

    Thanks for replying .. but yes the Cathedral aspect took me back to Sarah and Yank’s wedding all those years ago …

    Take care – cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — What a cool place that would be to have a wedding at the base of Yosemite Falls — the many tourists would certainly increase the guest list. Glad it reminds you of Sarah and Yank’s New England wedding — it must have been especially beautiful. I hope you come upon those pictures.

      There are many species of pines in the West, and right there in Yosemite. But, before our dotage, you must visit and we can go identify them. 🙂

      Cheers,
      Samantha

  270. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – those falls look amazing and what a great place to be able to walk through that Cathedral of pines – if that’s what they are … fantastic view – no wonder you’re hooked. Water is extraordinary and so strong … quite daunting when it comes from a great height …

    Cheers and good luck to Gwynn for carrying on the challenge .. Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — I had to look this up. It’s a question I’ve been wondering about and should have looked up years ago in my days of wandering among high mountain conifers. The sequoias and cedars are members of the cypress family, as opposed to the pine family of conifers, maybe you know. I think these are mostly sequoias here, but probably with some pines mixed in. I’d love to be able to return and check for you. Wouldn’t that be fun! You could come over and join me.

      It is a cathedral, though. One can do nothing but stand and gaze in awe at the magnificence, imbued with the scent of those trees.

      Thanks for coming by, as always.

  271. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – what a great story … sad about the disease – I hope they can help clear it up. Wonderful to see the Dredger and read the story .. and then to have been able to have a sail … fascinating – and it made me look where Delaware was … I hadn’t realised it was so small … still live and learn .. a drop of the ocean!

    Cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — Yes, sad about the disease; oysters once common fare are now a delicacy, and it affects the incomes of the watermen, their catch regulated to limited numbers. Biologists think the diseases are caused mainly by runoff — mostly from fertilizer on the surrounding farms, but from other contaminants, as well.

      Yes, Delaware is our second smallest state — comprised of only three counties. It’s good in that you have easy access to government officials; you’re known more often by a name than a number. But, at the same time you have to be careful what you say, because everybody knows everybody. Despite their small numbers, Delawareans get around. No matter where I’ve traveled or lived, I’ve run into Delawareans, to the extent that I wondered if anybody was left in the state. 🙂

      Thanks!

  272. Susan Scott says:

    Well now, that’s pretty impressive! I went straight away to watch the webcam but it’s not working on my side. The photo is beautiful and breathtaking viewed between those magnificent trees … and especially your wonderful descriptive prose. I reckon even I could write poetry were I to see them. Thank you Samantha for this slice of mother nature in all her glory.

    And Gwynn, you spelt it wrong – it’s pleasure not pressure. I look forward to your posts!

    • sammozart says:

      It was John Muir who used the word glorious to describe Yosemite, who wrote the poetry — and the book The Yosemite, and got Yosemite designated and preserved as a national park. This is good. Yosemite Valley has a twin, Hetch Hetchy Valley, but sadly that one couldn’t be saved. The Tuolumne River there is dammed and the valley filled with water for San Francisco. Due to recent technological advances, all that dammed water there is no longer needed to serve SF water and electrical power. There is a grassroots move on, therefore, to demolish the dam. I have photos. Will write a story at some point.

      Sorry the webcam didn’t work. That’s odd. Maybe it was just momentarily down or not available to S.A. I don’t know how those things work. Anyway, it shows Yosemite Falls as just a trickle, and the spring snowmelt water stain on the granite walls behind the falls.

      Thank you, Susan, and thank you for pointing out to Gwynn her misspelling. 🙂

  273. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Well, I’m laughing Carol. I really enjoyed your post and description of Yosemite Valley and Falls… until I read about me and went EEEKKK… NOW what am I going to do?? I really am going to have to do some work to see what humor I can find out there!! PRESSURE!!!!! 😉

    • sammozart says:

      No pressure; just be yourself, Gwynn. Like the rules say, have fun — way up there on that Pacific NW peninsula. Didn’t you have a picture of a ferry or something and a talking bag story? Something like that. Pictures of birds and their hunting routines; you know … like that.

      You’ll do well. Everybody will love your stories.

  274. Susan Scott says:

    Lovely post Samantha thank you! I remember reading a more detailed one on Maggie May a few years back and your wonderful Friend(s) – and your taking her on a pilot ride! Is she still operational – i.e. dredging for oysters? One day, we’ll have oysters and champagne whether there or in Plett!

    • sammozart says:

      Oysters and champagne in Plett sounds delightful, Susan. I’ll hoist my sails to that. 🙂

      Thumper and his crew take the Maggie out on the bay dredging nearly daily. That is his means of income. He and Jean live off the land, by choice. And, sadly, oyster dredging on the bay is very limited due to depreciation in numbers from disease. Authorities are constantly seeding the bays — both bays — the Delaware and the Chesapeake — to grow more oysters.

  275. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Maggie is a classical and beautiful schooner. The pictures are stunning and the history is intriguing. You are lucky to have such a wealth of history surrounding you. Lovely post!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gwynn. You have history surrounding you, too. I mean, after all, the Maggie is not a Viking ship.

      🙂

  276. Susan Scott says:

    Just to add – and to ask – the Louis L’Amour novels – weren’t they about cowboys and such like? I remember reading these highly charged, quick paced novels under the blankets the night before school exams.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Susan, Louis L’Amour, Cormac McCarthy, Larry McMurtry among other authors wrote Western novels. I haven’t read them, but my favorite, probably is Larry McMurtry’s “Lonesome Dove.” I haven’t read the novel but I saw the movie, the series, featuring Robert Duvall, Tommy Lee Jones and Angelica Huston, a gritty, desolate saga set in Texas.

      Gripping stories.

      There is another movie I really like and have watched several times, “Tombstone” (1993), about Wyatt Earp and his brothers, starring Kurt Russell, Tom Paxton and Sam Elliott. The ambience reminds me of Bodie.

  277. Susan Scott says:

    Good on Thomas Garrett and others of his ilk who did what they could to prevent slaves being sold. Sadly, for many a long while, we had the same thing here in South Africa, whites and blacks for separate entrances and exits, loos, beaches, buses and heavens knows what else while we lived under apartheid. Now there is no such thing but the memories linger on.

    I will read the link to the magazine article on this Samantha at a later stage thank you for providing it (load shedding keeps on happening – black outs, in the middle of winter). Keep on crusading with your pen; these are stories that need to be told.

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Susan. The only blacks I knew growing up were our housemaids. Then, I moved to Washington, D.C., and worked with a green-eyed, light-skinned beautiful woman who told me her stories of growing up in Northern Virginia (across the Potomac from D.C.), having to ride in the back of the bus even when there were seats up front, and traveling with her family through the South — you had to plan well where you could stop for food, restrooms and gasoline.

      Thankfully, much of that kind of discrimination is in the past.

      Thanks. I’ll keep writing them; these stories are important to be told, as you say.

  278. Susan Scott says:

    That ramp down to the beach could be the ramp down to one of the main beaches (Beacon Island Beach) in Plettenberg Bay! Extraordinary! The mountains though in Plettenberg Bay are off to the left looking toward the sea called the Tsitsikama mountains. Yours look as if they are more in front of you looking to the sea … from the pier I guess.

    What happy memories Carol! I can imagine Kellie yelling at you more Mom more! Even today I perform in the waves if the family is watching – e.g. overdramatise a tumbling in the waves! (am not suggesting you did/do the same, really!) Thanks for sharing this with us!

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Susan, from your photos, Plettenberg Bay reminds me much of that area around Redondo Beach. The mountains to the north, the Santa Monica Mtns., where Malibu is, form part of the mountains surrounding L.A., forming the L.A. basin. It’s like a bowl with three sides, the fourth open to the ocean. Consequently, the smog — the sea breeze blows the smog up against the mountains and it can’t get out, especially because commonly there’s an inversion layer over the basin — cold air on top of warm air, like a lid. The American Indians called the L.A. basin “the valley of smoke.”

      To the south in my photo is the Palos Verdes Peninsula, with San Pedro and Long Beach, both pretty flat, south of that. The peninsula juts out into the ocean, with stunning views from the cliffs. The land above the ocean is constantly sliding, so houses slide and they have to keep repaving the road — daily, weekly, monthly.

      Thanks for the info about Plettenberg Bay. I like to know. Fascinating.

      I haven’t swum in the ocean in a long time, and I miss it; though I think at this stage of my life even the gentlest waves might knock me down.

      OK, and about Kellie: When her kids were little she’d take them to Disneyland or some amusement park and say to her companions, “Here, you watch the kids. I’m going to get on this ride.” 🙂 She hasn’t changed much.

      Thanks!

  279. Gwynn Rogers says:

    YUP… Good old Redondo Beach, where we were neighbors and never knew it… I don’t think… unless you were my client at the B of A in Palos Verdes Estates. I’ll bet I wouldn’t recognize Redondo any more since I left in 1976 when Heather was 15 months old. I loved riding my bike along the Strand down to Venice and back. Prior to Heather’s arrival I spent a great deal of time on the beach body-surfing. It was a fun time. Beautiful post that brought back LOTS of memories.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I miss Redondo, Gwynn. Too bad we never met there, that we know of. I never banked at the B of A in PV. Redondo has changed a lot since you were there, as I noted in the story. When I went back in the late ’90s, it had changed much in the few years since I left — even more people and traffic, and a new demographic of Yuppies, those who could afford to live there.

      You know, we rented our apt. on Camino de las Colinas for $135/mo. — 2 bedrooms with a patio over a 3-car garage and a sweeping view like the one above — from PV to Point Dume. On winter and spring nights when the waves were big I could hear them pounding on the shore.

      Ah, me. Whatever happened to those days.

      I was air mattress surfing in Hermosa one time riding wave after wave, while Kellie, 3 or 4 years old, stood on the shore calling “Do it again! Do it again, Mom!” 🙂

      Thanks, Gwynn

  280. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha … it is sad – yet heritage and life stories are built on these eras. Thankfully some escaped and got free again … this reminds me of Solomon Northrup in 12 Years a Slave – who was a black man born free … but was re-enslaved … very good film – interesting history to be reminded/told about.

    But checking up on Solomon Northrup – because I knew about the violinist .. but couldn’t remember ‘from where’ exactly … I found a story about a slave who settled in Cornwall and performed around Cornwall, rather than risk going to London. Fascinating – I’d never heard of him either … I might write about him at some stage.

    Thanks – great story line .. cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — Yes “12 Years a Slave” captures (as it were) this story completely. In 1850 our U.S. Congress enacted The Fugitive Slave Act, as you may know, mandating that all runaway slaves, even in the North, be captured and returned South. If a Northern sheriff didn’t capture one he knew to be a slave, then the sheriff was heavily fined.

      One former slave, Frederick Douglass, spoke for abolition, and went to live in London, I believe, so he wouldn’t get caught, even though by then he was a free man. He loved the English and they loved him. He stayed for many years, but was eventually drawn back to work for the cause. After the end of our Civil War, Frederick Douglass spoke at our local Smyrna (Delaware) Opera House, for which I volunteer these days.

      Do write about the slave who settled and performed in Cornwall. I’d love to know it.

      Thanks so much for coming by. I enjoy your visits.

      Cheers,
      Samantha

  281. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha .. extraordinary ghost town – you can see why they filmed there … ‘beautiful views’. Fun to see – thanks for sharing and yes also we can see where the idea of cowboy movies came from.

    Glad you’ve taken on the mantle of the 5 day photo blog challenge … I’m still managing to stay clear of blogging – til mid September …

    I enjoyed the story line and the photo .. and the video … cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary. I love that area up there in the Eastern High Sierra. I have lots of photos. I may do an A-Z Challenge on photos or sense of place next year and include some of these Eastern Sierra photos.

      Nice that you are taking time off from blogging. I’m getting pretty blogged out, myself. Don’t get much else done — including the dusting — and Moriarty doesn’t dust, so….

      Thanks for coming by. 🙂

      Cheers,
      Samantha

  282. Gwynn Rogers says:

    The really sad part is this almost sounds like the Jews hiding from Nazi Germany. It is so sad that treating people so badly is a part of our history. Excellent post.

    • sammozart says:

      The same story repeats itself, Gwynn. This is why I chose to write on this subject, for the deeper meaning, hoping that somebody in addition to you will read it and take thought. This is my personal crusade as my fingers ride the battlefields of history upon the pen.

      Thanks for your complimentary comment.

  283. Pat Garcia says:

    Good Morning,
    Every things changes; nothing remains the same. Your avec le temp remind me of this and confirms my own perception that life is to be lived to maximise the gifts that have been planted within us.
    The French singer, Patricia Kaas, reminds me a lot of the singer Melina Mercouri from Greece. She was an activist and participated in Greece’s revolution in 1967. She had to leave her country and live in exile but later became a member of the parliament in 1977.
    So, you avec le temp speaks to my heart. It confirms the necessity of fulfilling your life purpose because everything changes.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      You are so right, Patricia — maximize the gifts and live life to the fullest we can. I strive to do the best I can with what I have, to fulfill what I perceive as my life’s purpose, as you do and exemplify so well.

      I remember Melina Mercouri — that takes me back. I didn’t know she was a political activist and a member of the Greek parliament.

      Yes, everything changes. Thank you for being my constant friend.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  284. Susan Scott says:

    Most interesting Samantha thank you! That really was the wild west. I can see where Clint Eastwood got his inspiration for cowboy movies. Amazing to see the preacher man get out his gun and shoot. As Gwynn says, educational. May your dream come true to visit at nighttime; hopefully the Phantom will help you record. And to have Dickens there to help sniff out ghosts may be useful …

    • sammozart says:

      Since I was a child I loved the Wild West, Susan. So, I was thrilled when we flew to Tucson when I was 16, in 1958 — I was in cowboy country, just like Roy Rogers! Tucson was wide open spaces in those days — Arizona was. And I’ve always loved Tombstone. Then when more than 30 years later I got to spend time up in the Eastern High Sierra, there I was again — in cowboy country. So many westerns have been filmed up there, including all of Gene Autry’s pictures. I love it up there in that high, dry air and the mountains and the sagebrush.

      I have photos of inside that Bodie church. There’s a really old little pipe organ in there. And, yes Moriarty and Dickens may help me connect tithe the ghost prospectors and ghost dogs.

      So, if I’m out there while you’re visiting Susan in Arizona, then you’ll have to come on over and we can visit nighttime Bodie together. What’s truly amazing are the stars blanketing the night sky and the satellites among them. No artificial lights around for miles and miles.

  285. Gwynn Rogers says:

    WOW! I’ve been close to the Brodie area but never there. In fact, I didn’t know about it. Thanks for the educational and fun treat! Great job!

    • sammozart says:

      Bodie is not to be missed, Gwynn. I love it there.

      Thanks for the compliment. 🙂

  286. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – lovely story .. the more I read of Moriarty and Dickens – the more I become enamoured by them … and feel they’re talking to me too. Yes – Gifts do come from unexpected places and at times we can ill afford them and wonder why – then the realisation …

    Once we realise there’s a reason – it’s easier to accept the next time … and as Susan’s doing to try and understand ‘the whole’ of that gift …

    Ah the gift of bird poop …. we have blackberry poop time soon! With seagulls around .. it’s larger than normal …

    Borscht – love it .. and a thick bowl with crusty bread and fresh butter – too good … cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary. Thanks for coming by. It does help to understand the whole or at least the learning to be gained from that gift. I do try to remember this passage every time I receive one of those unexpected gifts, and hopefully I reach the realization.

      Next time you visit my blog, I’ll ask Moriarty to have some borscht ready for you. No telling if he’ll comply — he’s so unpredictable, you know.

      Meanwhile, stay out from beneath those seagulls. 🙂

      Cheers, Samantha

  287. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi,

    I love this one with Moriarty, and I love his gifts to you and to Dickens. I have laughed through this one as I contemplated some of Moriarty’s wise words. And of course, listening to Pavarotti and Friends is kind of like the cherry on the cake. I have that CD also.

    Moriarty’s sharpness is a force that causes you to be creative. His answer to you when you said what will readers think when you haven’t posted for a while had me cracking up. I have two characters in my series that I am working on that give me the same smart aleck answers. Especially the man, who insists that he is my protector. He wakes me up some time at 2 am saying, “that not the way I talk. You have to change that sentence in my dialogue now. I don’t like it.” And he won’t let me rest until I get up and change it. That’s why I sleep with my iPad by my bedside. We’ve come to an agreement that I don’t have to go downstairs to my office and change it. I can do it on my iPad since my writing software syncs with all my computer components from iPhone to iPad to MacBook, to iMac.

    So my dear, your quote applies to a very real situation that takes place in everyone’s life and you have used a situation between you and Moriarty and Dickens to describe the process of problems forcing us to display the gifts in our hands. Great job.

    Now I know that my problems reveal the gifts that are inside me, and I agree. I probably would never have grown or experimented with certain things if I had not tackled the problems.

    I can’t wait to read a book about Moriarty and Dickens.

    Thank you.

    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Pat — Moriarty insists he’s not my fall guy, and as he looks over my shoulder when I write up my experiences with him, he often tells me, “That’s not how I said that sentence,” so I have to go back and change it. I wish I had your setup of synchronized Macs/Apple products. That’s my ideal. But, in the meantime, I’ll concentrate on spying on Moriarty to insure he doesn’t hide the blog snow shovels before next winter.

      I am looking forward to hearing more from your characters. I so enjoy the Prophet and Child.

      Moriarty’s pushing me to publish that book about us. I ought to have him call Theo my computer tech to find out what’s the holdup on getting my refurbished Mac Pro. He would have some sharp remark to make, and the process might speed up.

      Those Pavarotti & Friends CDs are so wonderful, beautiful and moving.

      Thanks for the compliments. Always appreciated. 🙂

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  288. Pat Garcia says:

    Good Morning My Dear,
    Before I begin to work on my backlog, I thought I would sit back and relax by reading your day one of the 3 Day Quote Challenge, and I am glad I did. Your first day has given me strength. What a wonderful article on Pavlova. The strength of her character, her endurance and her perseverance comes through.
    What impressed me most was that she realised that it was a constant practice, constant working to make herself better in what she did, and she did excel in so many ways. She was the number one because of what she endured. She stayed focused and when she danced, it was an experience that touched the hearts of everyone. She drew them into her world.
    Seeing Pavlova and reading about her in this article gives me the strength to keep on writing. To be the very best writer that I can be in whatever I write.
    Thank you so much for going into detail about the great woman whose footprints left a great mark in the world.

    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Pavlova inspires, Patricia. She created an aura around herself, a brand. She used to arrive at events, where her fans were waiting outside, in an automobile with the interior lit, and then step out with a grand flourish. Frederick Ashton, who met her, tells that story in the video here, if you haven’t watched it.

      Studying ballet was hard work, but fun, and felt good: you have to feel a passion for it. I would arrive at class sometimes feeling like a slug and leave feeling exhilarated. I think it’s that way with anything you seriously enter into in life; it grabs you spontaneously with a passion and you can’t let go.

      Shalom

      • Pat Garcia says:

        Hi,

        Thank you for mentioning the other 3 short cuts. I have just seen the interview about her. It is an in depth look at the woman Pavlova. To think that he thought she was ugly when he first saw her and then she started dancing and drew him into her world. She was indeed an extraordinary ballerina. She was in a class of her own.

        Shalom,
        Patricia

  289. A lovely poem, undoubtedly more lovely in the original French. It seems sad, but then that’s just me not wanting to let go. A poignant and beautiful reminder to enjoy the moment while it lasts, but to also let it go when it doesn’t. Thank you, Samantha.

    • sammozart says:

      I agree, Sara. Thank you. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could have a basket of the things we liked the best in life and we could pick one out and live the good parts again. Oh, well, I guess that’s what nostalgia is all about. 🙂

  290. Susan Scott says:

    Just lovely – so real and true Samantha thank you…just last evening we were listening in the car to a CD that my husband had bought – French music. And we were saying how delightful it is and so different, so little accompaniment to the singing in those deep throaty voices that express so much even if we were not familiar with the language. But – a universal language nevertheless ‘… and we feel frozen in a bed of chance…’ –

    • sammozart says:

      I do like French pop music, Susan — well, the classical, too. Even if I don’t understand the language, I get the feeling — the music and the feeling are universal, as you say. There’s that synchronicity again — interesting that you and your husband were listening to French music as I was posting this. There’s something about French thought — melancolique ending on an upbeat; deeply thoughtful yet laissez-faire — feeling frozen in that bed of chance.

      I appreciate your thoughts. Thank you.

  291. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Lovely post. Yes, with time everything changes. Being able to deal with change is an essential part of life. Many people can’t deal with change… it is sad. Change in life is inevitable.

    Both songs are so lovely and compelling. Thank you.

    • sammozart says:

      Things come, things change and things go away, Gwynn. It is the chain of events.

      Poignant poem, song and performances.

      Thanks, Gwynn

  292. I like the quote. I wish I could think that way more often. But as you say, it’s easier said than done.

    • sammozart says:

      Oh, absolutely, Lori, easier said than done — sometimes I just want to hold onto the past in hopes I might magically bring it back.

      Thank you for coming by and commenting, Lori. 🙂

  293. That’s a great quote, and important, I think. I find it comforting that the problems we face happen in order to teach us something–about ourselves or our lives. I sometimes think the whole meaning of life is just one big lesson. We’re here to learn, for what reason, I don’ t know, but somehow that seems important.

    And borscht and baguette sounds positively yummy right now. I need to go eat breakfast… 😉

    • sammozart says:

      “If you were perfect, you wouldn’t be here” — a spiritual master, well, really, more than one, told us that. I don’t know the reason exactly, Sara, but I do believe we’re here to learn.

      Borscht and baguette reminder — now you’re making me hungry. 🙂

      Thanks!

  294. How beautiful and yet fascinating. Ballet is an interesting art, of which I know very little. But the amount of discipline that goes into it is quite mind boggling. And I had no idea one must possess that special, ethereal “something” to even be considered a ballerina. Thank you for the insight.

    And thank you for the nomination! I will have to give this one some thought and see if I can find some interesting quotes. We’ll see. 😉

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, ballet might appeal to your ethereal storytelling side, Sara. The discipline of ballet practice arises out of a deep passion for the dance. Dancing ballet always made me feel spiritually high, even when I thought my leg would fall off when I had to do 16 more high kicks.

      As for the quotes, I’ll bet your characters, Oswald, for example (I love the name), could come up with some quotes. 🙂 No pressure, though.

  295. Susan Scott says:

    This took me back Samantha to the years that I was a ballet student! Yes the older the pointe shoes the better. Not sure if I resorted to slamming them in doors to soften, maybe jumping on them. Can you believe that Dulcie Howes the doyen of ballet in Cape Town recommended me to the Royal School of Ballet London? Not on so far as my father was concerned … finish your schooling first. By which time I had grown out of my shell a fair bit … and discovered the opposite sex!

    The clip was magical thank you and I’ll follow up on the Markarova interview when time permits. Yes, dedication to one’s craft pays no matter how difficult and this moments of happiness in achieving a little more are worth the effort.

    Thank you! And also for acknowledging me dear friend.

    • sammozart says:

      There is a kinship dancers share, Susan; we are of a particular thought group and sensibility. This adds sense to your and my friendship. To be recommended to the Royal School of Ballet by a prima ballerina assoluta is quite an honor. I could’ve watched you dance in great ballets. Wow. My daughter and a friend who took class with us were both told they could become professionals if they so chose. They chose not to — my daughter because she wanted a more rounded life and our friend because she opted to become a mathematician. She taught university math and then became a lawyer. She plays piano, as you do, and now shows Dobermans, lives on a farm in upstate N.Y.

      My mother gave me lessons when I was 8-10 years old. I saw those older girls on pointe and thought that’s what I naturally should do. But, my mother stopped my lessons, so I didn’t go back until I was 30. Dancing on pointe was never easy for me, though I loved it, in my 30s and 40s. Nevertheless, I have a deep passion for ballet — even if it’s just taking class.

      Thanks!

  296. Susan Scott says:

    Richard Bach’s quote is powerful. It’s made me think of something extremely unpleasant that happened recently in a group I am in – the effects of it still ongoing – and I am wondering about the gift that it contains. So multi-layered! But it is an important consideration and I am now looking at it all in a different light thanks to this post of yours. I too had to stand up for my dignity and cause so my heart felt thanks to Moriarty and you. Please tell him.

    The clip by Bono and Pavarotti is lovely – One.

    • sammozart says:

      Richard Bach’s book “Illusions” IS powerful, Susan — the handbook for the reluctant messiah. How timely that you and I often write about just what the other is struggling with. I do keep “The Messiah’s Handbook” pretty much handy. And interestingly, Richard Bach’s subsequent book was called “One,” which I hadn’t thought of when I chose Bono’s “One” to accompany this piece.

      I hope you — well, I know you will — find the gift among the layers.

      Moriarty was looking over my shoulder as I read your comment. He is smiling. 🙂

  297. Gwynn Rogers says:

    OMG… the Blue Bird of Happiness found you!!! 😉 What better luck can you receive than that!? 😉

  298. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I keep receiving gifts where I have to learn a lesson. I would prefer to receive the gift of the Lottery, Thank You! Heck, I have to walk the waterfront to receive the gifts that Dicken’s receives… lucky dog!!

    • sammozart says:

      You’ll love this, Gwynn: Just when I finished my final edit, posted and shared this, I went out to the backyard to take down my laundry. A bird who had eaten deep red berries had pooped on my white bed sheet.

      It’s a gift of good luck … right?

  299. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Quite inspiring! Ballet obviously was an important part of your life. It is such a graceful dance. I do admire people who can do it! Thank you for the education.

    • sammozart says:

      Two and a half hours a day, six days, sometimes seven, a week; yes it was important, Gwynn, and it still is. Kellie and I have a family of friends from those days, and whenever I watch a ballet my muscles are tired at the end from moving them with the dancers, even from my chair, throughout the performance. It comes automatically to move with the dancers, lifting, elongating, turning….

      Thanks.

  300. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – I’ve kept this back for ages to read .. and then reply … how lovely and I do look forward to more stories, more of Moriarty and Dickens .. and generally more of the Scheherazade Chronicles …

    You did Emma proud and she will appreciate you adding to our knowledge of dementia and caring … good luck to you bringing those stories into the light, or onto the page …

    Cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary. What a pleasant surprise to come to my blog and find you have been here and commented.

      I sent my British friend Barbara (who lives near me here in Delaware) to your website. She is a retired history teacher, has taught history around the world, knows a lot about Cornwall and wanted to know more. I don’t know if she commented, but she is fascinated with your site and your history and lore of Cornwall. She loved it. She maintains a house in England and will be over there in a few weeks for the summer. I’d tell you where, but the name escapes me at the moment. Somewhere around London, I believe, and maybe near the coast.

      Thanks for your visit and inspiration. Moriarty has a lot to say, so he’s been pressing me to write another blog post. 🙂

      Cheers!
      Samantha

      • Hilary says:

        Hi Samantha .. I’m so pleased Barbara enjoyed the postings etc … I’m ‘shocked’ she’s a history teacher – but delighted she appreciates ‘my history’ …. I was hopeless at school! Yes, I mean it. I think I must be a (very) late developer!!

        Looking forward to more Moriarty and Dickens … and ‘see you around’ .. cheers Hilary

  301. Celine says:

    I will most definitely come and join, and pour myself a glass of wine or a cup of Lapsang Souchon, depending on my mood, and then curl up in a chair to listen to you and Moriarty. I might even bring a treat or two for Dickens. Listening to a storyteller weave a tale is one of the great pleasures of this world so I look forward to all the stories you will tell us! 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      Such a kind compliment, Celine. Thank you. I look forward to your visit. Moriarty does, too, I think. He’s blushing. Of course, Dickens is always up for a treat.

      I agree with you — listening to a storyteller weave a tale indeed is one of my great pleasures and the world would have greater peace if more would listen, I believe.

      I apologize for taking so long to reply. My computer has been down, so I’m using a notebook computer and trying to keep up. 🙂

      • Celine says:

        Oh no, sorry to hear that. Computer issues are the worse….Hope you managed to get it all sorted soon!

        • sammozart says:

          I do, too, Celine. That is, I hope my computer tech does — he’s had my computer for over two months. I wrote the A-Zs on a notebook computer — that was a challenge in itself. 🙂

  302. Susan Scott says:

    Thank you Samantha for your delightful stories and for your invitation to join in at the cupola. May I request blueberry scones and thick thick cream please – and also to leave the bowl of the mix for me to lick – as a human (myself) and not as Dickens. He can lick my fingers … I so look forward to this meeting, listening to stories, drinking a glass of whatever’s on offer, and viewing the blue deer and maybe a camel or two.

    • sammozart says:

      Superb, Susan. It so happens that I just bought fresh blueberries to put in my scones when I bake them tomorrow. Will certainly save the bowl. Dickens can lick fingers; he doesn’t mind. Moriarty’s rushing around — no he’s not; he never rushes — he’s going around cleaning the blog. I think he’s up washing the windows in the cupola right now.

      What a joy to look forward to. 🙂

  303. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi,
    You can bet that I’ll have a nice glass of red wine or a glass of champagne when you and Moriarty get together. I am already a fan of his and I think you two are excellent partners along with Dickens, of course. I don’t want to forget Dickens.

    So I accept your invitation. It is really inspiring to enter into the world of a storyteller.
    All the best.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      I will have Moriarty set the table and lay out some cheese and crackers, tuna salad finger sandwiches, miniature chicken salad croissants, garlic hummus and pita chips with Mediterranean seasoning and some sliced mango, raspberries, pineapple and grapes.

      Dickens is not quite tall enough to lay his nose on the table, but he’ll be right at your feet waiting for crumbs to drop. We will enjoy animated conversation, says Moriarty. When you enter into our world, Patricia, you will further inspire us. Thank you.

      Slalom,
      Samantha

  304. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi T.J.
    Reading your story made me think of one of my favourite writers, Catherine Marshall. She used to write a lot for Guideposts and wrote many books that are still being read today. She was quite a woman. Her first husband was Peter Marshall, who was also a Chaplain of the United States Senate and died at the age of 49, leaving her behind with a young son, Wee Peter, who was just nine years old.

    Your story drew me in from the beginning. I am a person that believes we are warned when changes are about to take place in our lives. Sometimes they happen right away, and sometimes not, but the feeling that something is about to happen is there and I have learned not to ignore that feeling.

    Thank you for sharing and especially about that third person. We are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses that have passed through to life eternal.
    Love you.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    P.S. Thank you my dear Samantha for this feature. It was a joy to read this Monday morning and it was very encouraging to me.
    Shalom my friend.
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Patricia, thank you for your words of wisdom. I know T.J. will want to read this. I will pass it along to her, and she may reply. So, watch for that if you can.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

    • T. J. Banks says:

      Thank you, Patricia. How interesting that you mention Catherine Marshall and that she wrote for Guideposts, too. I read her book CHRISTY years ago and found it very spiritual, very moving. There was a series based on that book, but I did not care for it: the writers introduced a lot of soap-opera-ish elements in it that undercut that spiritual element.
      I believe that the two worlds are more interconnected than we realize — that those who loved us in this life, love us still and find ways to be with us.
      Love you, too, and sie gesundht, as my grandmother used to say.

      • Pat Garcia says:

        T.J.
        Catherine Marshall wrote three books after her first husband, Peter Marshall, died that have left deep imprints on my life. They are non-fiction, 1. Beyond Ourselves, 2. To Live Again, 3. Something more. I bought them and read them so often and highlighted them in red, yellow, blue, green, whatever colour that I hadn’t used to indicate that my eyes had opened to a principle that I had not seen before. Her first fictional book was Christy and her second book is called Julie. I started reading Julie and have never finished it. I don’t know why, but it didn’t draw me in as Christy did. Christy was a fantastic book.
        I am glad that I wasn’t in the States to see the television adaptation of Christy. I am one of those people that thinks a film adaptation can never take the place of actual book and how the story is told. So, I stay away from a lot of movies because I have read the book and the descriptions from the book are so clear in my mind, that I am often disappointed when I see the film.
        C. Marshall second husband was Leonard Lesourd. He had three children and she helped raised them. Lesourd was one of the senior editors of Guidepost Magazine.
        Peter Marshall, her first husband was a Scottish and I must admit I am partial to Scots because I have some Scottish genes in me. When I visit Scotland, I feel at home, like I’ve returned to my roots.
        Just wanted to share with you a little more about my relationship with Catherine Marshall. In fact, I have a letter that she wrote me personally. I had written to her about my own writing desires; that I knew writing was in me and she wrote me back a very encouraging letter, personally. Today we have computers, but back then I received a letter from her and I still have it.

        Wishing you a nice day, Lady and thanks for the German. That is cute.
        Shalom,
        Patricia

        • T. J. Banks says:

          Thank you for all the additional information on Catherine Marshall, Patricia. I really didn’t know much about her, as CHRISTY was the only one of her books I ever read. And, FWIW, I just looked her up and found that we share the same birthday as well as a Guideposts connection.
          I, too, dislike film/T. V. adaptations of books that I love. For me, there are only a few that come close to the books that they’re based on: “Watership Down,” “Pride & Prejudice” (the BBC version), “The Age of Innocence,” and “Possession.” In the case of “Christy,” the writers played the-doctor’s-wife’s-not-really-dead card so that they could have her appear and mess things up just as he and Christy were about to marry. That, of course, spoiled an important part of the book — namely, that he had lost his faith because of his wife’s death.

        • T. J. Banks says:

          I think it is wonderful that Catherine Marshall wrote and encouraged you. What a treasure.

  305. Gwynn Rogers says:

    You are an extremely apt story-teller. I clearly see you sneaking around looking for books that tell stories. You have a wonderful mind for detail. Well written!!

    • sammozart says:

      We Virgos have a mind for detail, as you well know, Gwynn. And, I do love reading and telling stories. Thank you for your compliment.

  306. Celine says:

    What a beautiful and yet sad story. It made me shudder a bit, and I got the urge to send my husband a message after that. Beautifully written and so poignant.

  307. Marsha Lackey says:

    My dear Tammy, I have no doubts as I’m sure you are aware. What a beautiful, soulful, loving experience. I know they visit us from the other side. The picture of Tim gave me the most calm, spiritual feeling. You wrote this experience so well, that words escape me. Thank you for sharing your love story.

    • sammozart says:

      I have forwarded your comment to T.J., Marsha. Well-put. I couldn’t have said it better. Thanks!

    • T. J. Banks says:

      I know, Marsha. Your comment about Tim’s photo moved me. It’s one of my favorite photos of him — his intelligence and quicksilver personality really shine through in it.

  308. T. J. Banks says:

    I’m glad that you shared my story, Samantha. Thank you — I hope it helps others who are grieving.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, it does, T.J. Plus, it’s comforting to know that we are not alone. It confirms what we think we see or feel, that presence of the other who has passed. This phenomenon intrigues me, and I’d like to explore it more. Additionally, this is simply extraordinary writing. If all three of my readers see it, hopefully that will help a very deserving writer. 🙂

  309. Gwynn Rogers says:

    This is a lovely and endearing story. I had posted on Tammy’s Sketch People site as well.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I saw your post on T.J.’s blog, Gwynn. I posted a comment right after you. I could not resist reposting T.J.’s story here. It is so poignant, true and beautifully written.

      Thanks. I know T.J. will appreciate your compliment here.

    • T. J. Banks says:

      What can I say, Gwynn, other than thank you for understanding (no pun intended) the spirit of this story?

  310. What a great song! I love the “Hennery”. 🙂 I hadn’t heard of filk music, but it sounds really interesting. I’ll admit I have a tendency to tune out lyrics in music, and just listen to the melody, so any response songs I might have heard would probably have gone unnoticed. And that’s a wonderful bit of serendipity, there.

    • sammozart says:

      Maybe I appreciate the “Hennery” more because Zola Taylor was from Los Angeles, and I lived there (Redondo Beach) for 30 years, most of my adult life until recently, when I moved to Delaware. I see you are from California, too, although I don’t know whether from Northern or Southern. To me, though, the “Hennery” sounds L.A.-ish, and it makes me homesick and it makes me smile.

      I hadn’t heard of filk music, either, and I must admit, too, that these days I gloss over the lyrics and just listen to the melody. Nevertheless, I remember every word from every song that was popular back — way back — in the 50s when I was a teenager. 🙂

      Thanks for coming by, Sara, as always.

  311. Mary Burris says:

    Such a great post! Thank you for including my blog. The answer songs remind me of East Coast versus West Coast rappers who seemed to use the question and answer method. I will be setting this post up on my page to publish soon. I will leave a link here when it’s ready 🙂 and of course, you will most certainly get proper credit. Thank you.

    • sammozart says:

      Well, I’m not into rap music, Mary; it’s enough that I overhear it on the street. 🙂 But, that’s interesting to know, and I wondered if they did engage in answer rap, because it seems natural that they would.

      I’m glad you will be setting this post up on your blog. It fits your venue, and I thank you for inspiring me. I don’t know what triggered my recollection of that particular song, “Roll With Me, Henry,” but it intrigues me that I recalled it on the 60th anniversary of the cover version’s topping the charts. And then that my writing of blues music, which I know little about, should occur the day B.B. King passed, also on May 14. You’ll no doubt want to tie his death into this post.

      Thank you so much, Mary. I’m glad you came by to connect with me on the A-Zs.

  312. Susan Scott says:

    Samantha! I honestly can’t believe that I am getting to your reflection post only now. I’m sure I receive your posts automatically? I don’t recall receiving this one. I missed out on Hilary’s too and commented on hers only yesterday but hers I cannot sign up to.
    Anyway, enough of all that. But I will go back and check for May 5th.

    It’s wonderful that Kern, Hilary, Sara (besides the others who we ‘know’), those wonderful women were supporters of your blog. It gives me such pleasure that I was instrumental in a small way in encouraging you to take part. Your work deserves a larger ‘platform’. It is always a delight to read your posts which leave me gasping with literary envy I have to say .. and Kern nailed it when she said you bring your heart and soul to your writing.

    Please send my very best wishes to Moriarty, the Phantom, and a special tug of the tail to Dickens. One day I hope to meet them at the round table when we’ll have wine, blueberry scones, thick cream and irises and camels in the near distance.

    • sammozart says:

      Dear Susan — Moriarty’s blushing; and Dickens is wagging his tail. (I think he’s actually smiling, too, at Moriarty’s rare blushing.)

      I signed up to receive notification of my new blog posts, but I haven’t checked that email box in ages, so I don’t know if the notifications are going out. I lost widgets and gadgets when my website was down, and then I had the A-Zs, so I am just now getting to fixing things.

      I thought that since I was seeking intelligent readers and good writers such as Kern, Sara, Hilary, Fee and the others to support my blog, then I should tap yours, and I am thrilled. Thank you. And thank you for your kind compliments. Ah, a larger platform: now I must go out and build that.

      Here’s to seeing you at the round table. Cheers!

  313. Celine says:

    I love the idea of artists responding to one another through their songs! As you say it’s kind of like a pre social media form of social media – that’s wonderful!

    I love the serendipity that led you back to this song! And on the anniversary too – that’s pretty amazing.

    • sammozart says:

      And what’s more amazing is the passing of B.B. King on the same day. There must be some connection, but I don’t know yet what it is.

      I love the answer song idea, too, Celine. It’s odd that I only just now found out about it after all my years of nearly constantly listening to music, all kinds of music.

      Thank you for coming by and commenting. It means a lot to me.

  314. Mary Burris says:

    Just now getting around to visiting the blogs in the challenge. April was a busy month for me. Congrats on completing the A to Z Challenge! Looking forward to next year! See you on the Road Trip!

    Mary http://www.JingleJangleJungle.net

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Mary — I am really glad you stopped by — and for a particular reason: music is my first love; in fact, some of my posts have soundtracks. Unfortunately, currently my mp3 player is down; now that the A-Zs are over, I will work on fixing that.

      I just visited you site and left a comment on your “Reflections” post. I also read your “Tequila” post and that recalled for me — out of the blue — the first rock ‘n’ roll song I ever heard, back in 1955, when I was 13 — “Roll With Me, Henry,” sung by Etta James. So, upon recalling that song today, I set off on a Google expedition to find it and learned it has quite an interesting backstory.

      Back here on my blog, I interrupted a series on music that I was posting, to begin the A-Zs. Now I will return to that: I will write a post on “Roll With Me, Henry.” I will let you know when I have posted it, and if you’d like you may re-post it on your blog, as long as you credit me and link back to my site.

      Thank you for coming by. Some say there are no coincidences, but it so happens that the Georgia Gibbs cover, “Dance With Me, Henry,” topped the juke box charts on this date 60 years ago — May 14, 1955. Wow.

      Don’t yet know if I’ll do the “Road Trip” — it depends on if I can fit it into my writing/reading schedule.

      Best!

  315. Hilary says:

    Then I forgot the honourable mention – appalling manners us Cornish have … it’s been a delight meeting you .. and Susan’s blog seems to have been a great spin off for some wonderful writers and blogging friends from this A – Z … I will be forever lurking! Cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Hilary. I am delighted to meet you, too, and shall return to visit you and learn more about Cornwall. Last year I learned about Calabria and the foot of the Italian boot’s vulnerability throughout history; this year Cornwall. Utterly fascinating.

      When I sought spinoffs from Susan’s blog, I sought people as intelligent and interesting as she, and you are among those. 🙂

      Cheers!
      Samantha

  316. Hilary says:

    Hi Sam – I am slowly catching up – very slowly. Now I’m getting to grips with your Chronicles and now of course realise Dickens is Moriarty’s beloved black dog … there’s me thinking he was Dickens of literary fame, also stepping out of the spectral wilderness to help you … mind you having run off – perhaps he is leading you to pastures new.

    I loved the Chronicle take … and like you I need to start at the beginning and follow your whimsical mind through … I think I did – as I was very impressed with your thoughts on Emma and your journey with her to her new pastures in heaven.

    I’ll be back ‘soon’!! Cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Hilary, without being overly redundant I tried to note in most of the episodes in which Dickens appeared that he is Moriarty’s dog and that Moriarty is The Phantom of My Blog, because I realize readers are jumping into this midstream. But, I didn’t want to overdo, thus creating stumbling blocks for regular readers — you know how it goes.

      I read a wonderful book last year by Gay Talese, one of our best American writers, “Unto the Sons” — 600 pages, hardback, dense type, recounting enthralling tales of his experiences growing up in Ocean City, New Jersey, the son of an Italian immigrant from Calabria, a tailor, and the history of his family and the Italian people, since before the Etruscans, in evocative detail, indeed since the first human set foot on the Italian boot. He does not miss a stitch. It was a lot, yet Talese always seemed to know when to re-identify people and places for his reader without seeming redundant. I’m still working on mastering that. So, I apologize for not making clearer the identities of those characters seen out of the corner of my imagination — and not that Dickens the dog isn’t inspired by Dickens the author.

      I think you are right about Dickens (and Moriarty) leading me to new pastures. I allow my characters to do that, and so far it’s worked for the best.

      Nice spring weather for exploring new pastures. I think I’ll go see what’s out there.

      Thank you, Hilary, as always, for your kind compliments and insight.

      Cheers!
      Samantha

  317. Hilary says:

    Hi Sam – hopefully Barbara will give a shout out when she visits … I’m still catching up … and must write another post shortly – probably at the weekend! I just saw your comment on my Z for Zennor post … but felt I must call in now …

    I will be back to read properly too .. I need to take Moriarty under my wing, and make sure I’ve understood the Dickens connection in amongst the chronicles of Scheherazade … I shall return anon … that glass of Zinfandel beckons! Cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — I just now saw your comment here. Sorry I missed it yesterday. By now you’ve made the Moriarty/Dickens connection as told in the Scheherazade Chronicles. Conan Doyle’s Moriarty connection with Charles Dickens would be … well, it might be interesting. Charles Dickens might have put Moriarty to intriguing use. –That thought and I’m only drinking my morning coffee — no Zinfandel yet. That’s for later — and please do stop by to share a glass with me. 🙂

  318. Fee says:

    Samantha, huge congratulations on completing the challenge. I feel that I can’t impress on you enough just how utterly magical I found your posts. Your writing is beautiful, thoroughly imagined, and inspiring. Since the challenge has finished I’ve really missed my evening routine of sitting down before bed with a cup of apple crumble tea and reading my favourite A-Z Challenge blogs. I always saved yours until last because your writing was so calming and I enjoyed having your words in my head as I drifted off to sleep. I look forward to keeping up with your writing in the future.

    Fee | Wee White Hoose

    • sammozart says:

      Fee, your gracious compliment really means a lot to me — as warming as apple crumb tea (I must look for that in our local markets), and most encouraging.

      I am very glad to have met you. I shall return to The Wee White Hoose to read more and to catch up on your earlier A-Z posts I missed.

      Thank you so much.

      Cheers!

  319. Nick Wilford says:

    What an elegant and creative Reflections post! Congrats on finishing the Challenge and I’m glad it was such a good experience for you. I’ll definitely be back to read more.

    • sammozart says:

      I am so glad you came by, Nick. Thank you for your kind compliment. I went back to your site and read your “Nick Wilford, Freelance Editor” post. I do the same thing you do — writing, editing, proofreading, copyediting, formatting for indie print and epub books. And — subconsciously editing the backs of cereal boxes.

      I’m disappointed that I found you after the A-Z fact, but will return to read more; in fact, I plan to take a brief break from writing posts and return to read earlier posts of favorite A-Z authors I met along the way. Besides, my doing so will give Moriarty a chance to hang a new header photo and otherwise clean up around my blog without my being underfoot. 🙂

  320. Pat Garcia says:

    What I like so well about Moriarty is his independence and is self-confidence. You’re sitting there talking to him about the challenge and he says, ” Some of them said they liked me.” That is a great sentence from Moriarty and it has me laughing. 🙂

    I so enjoyed visiting your blog on a daily basis and yes, I do hope that you take the time to be a part of it next year. Notice, I didn’t say, “find the time” because busy people with purpose in life never have enough time, we take the time, regardless. So I look forward to reading your blog posts and I wonder if my dear Moriarty and Dickens will make an appearance or two.

    Thank you also for your recommendation. That is a good idea and one that I want to follow up on for my own blog.
    Love you and Happy Mother’s Day.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Patricia. What a happy surprise to have you come by and visit me on Mother’s Day. A great gift.

      Yes, Moriarty’s comment did make me smile. So understated. I’ll bet he spent the rest of the day admiring himself in the mirror.

      True, we do make the time for what’s important. My friends are important, so I try to keep up with them. I’m already thinking about next year’s A-Zs. May do a “flash” story based on a photograph, if I can find 26 titles to match corresponding letters of the alphabet.

      Thank you again and again for reading my posts and commenting. It means a lot to me.

      Moriarty will be back. Except when he’s taking his zither lessons, he’s usually lurking around somewhere in my blog, and he normally has Dickens with him.

      I love you, too. Be well. Belated reply to your email coming up in the next few days.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  321. What a great way to reflect.

    I had a few comments disappear into a black hole too – except I never learned to copy them 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Annalisa. Glad you came by. I appreciate it.

      It took me a while to get the bright idea to copy my blogger and BlogSpot comments before posting them. 🙂

  322. Jeri Burns says:

    “…the dead are more alive than we…” I just LOVE that.

    Beautiful writing, and although I came into this story mid-stream (this is the post you alerted me about when you visited me), it carried carried carried – and makes me want to read more. I am so there in that house with that woman in white. How chilling that others saw her who weren’t aware that she could be there.

    Yes we do agree on something profound – storytelling matters. My blog is usually not ghost focused, but very much focused on that. Still the ghost stories matter in so many ways too… the story of your devotion to your mother is incredibly touching. I look forward to really delving in.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Jeri. I am glad you came by and commented. Yes, the dead being more alive than we is definitely food for thought. Since my mother’s passing I am becoming more aware of this aspect. And I now believe — just in the past few days — that when my uncle was dying of cancer back in 1973, my sensing a man visiting me, in the form of a dark shadow, was indeed he. This intrigues me and I’d like to learn more.

      Thanks again for the After Party. 🙂

  323. Val Rainey says:

    Oh Sam! You are way too funny! Your fellow must have been related to Henry V111. He coudn’t decide what to do with his wives…….divorced, beheaded, died…divorced, beheaded…survived as wife number six outlived him.

    • sammozart says:

      Perhaps he was related to Henry VIII, Val, but more apropos to this story, he was more closely related to Scheherazade’s Sultan, I think. Frankly (to toss in yet another name), I think Henry got the idea from the Sultan (or in this story, the pumpkin-hatted pasha. 🙂

      Thank you for visiting and commenting.

  324. Enchanting as always. I’m inclined to agree with Kern, I’m a little bit jealous my blog doesn’t have a ghost. It’s just me, and maybe some tumbleweeds. And thank you for sharing the story of Scheherazade. I recognized the story after reading it, but I didn’t connect it with the name. Now I understand why you’ve named your blog that, and it’s beautiful. Thank you for the shout out, too!

    • sammozart says:

      Tumbleweeds are good, Sara. They present a good image in which to relax between intense story scenes.

      Yes, I thought I had better come right out and say who Scheherazade is and the intent behind my blog name; sometimes I can be a little too subtle.

      Do serialize your stories. I think you’d be very good at that, and I look forward to reading them.

      I’m so glad to have met you and I have subscribed to your blog, if the sign-up went well. So, I will see you soon. 🙂

  325. See, this post is exactly the reason I’m so glad I found you through stalking the commenters on Susan Scott’s blog. It’s your creativity and inventiveness that first captivated me, and the heart and soul of your posts that kept me (and will keep me) coming back for more.

    I’m a little bit jealous that your blog has a ghost. I may have to conduct a seance to summon a spirit to haunt mine–I can only hope that spirit is as entertaining as Moriarty and his dog Dickens.

    • sammozart says:

      Here’s to stalking the commenters, Kern.

      Well, I think every blog has ghosts. Moriarty would know; I’ll have to ask him.

      “Heart and soul” — thank you so much for such a kind compliment. (Moriarty says utterly observant — but, then, he would.)

      I am so glad to have met you. I have subscribed to your blog, if all went well at the sign-up, so I will see you again. 🙂

  326. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Lovely post. It is wonderful to meet new friends a long the way. I hope you derive everything positive from the Challenge!! Hopefully your computer works again too. I’ll be without mine for a few days… EEK!!

    Congratulations on an excellent job! Hugs, Gwynn

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Gwynn. Taking up the A-Z Challenge has been a pleasure. And I made it all the way through without a word processor. All I had was WordPress on my blog and this Lenovo Notebook with a screen and typeface so small that I cannot read it from the distance of my external keyboard (my buttery keyboard, if you recall) that I attached to the Lenovo. My computer’s supposed to be ready tomorrow — unless there’s a glitch Theo thays. 😉

      Congrats to you, too. Thanks for being here all the way.

      Hugs

  327. Robert Price says:

    Very sweet!

    R.

  328. Beatrice says:

    fascinating!

    • sammozart says:

      Why, thank you, Beatrice. What a joy to have you come by and comment.

      Cheers!

  329. Celine says:

    What a fun post to end A to Z with, I had a chuckle (I confess, I had to google zither – what a gorgeous instrument!). I like Moriarty and Dickens a lot already – I’m looking forward to going back and reading more about them.

    It’s sad that A to Z has ended, but it will be nice to go back to normal life, with dusting and other chores getting done so we’re not all living in chaos 😉

    • sammozart says:

      I agree with you, Celine, about the A-Zs ending and getting back to dusting, laundry, etc.

      Moriarty says he’s glad you like him, and Dickens is wagging his tail. Their stories are interspersed throughout my blog, and I am planning to collect them into a book.

      Thanks! Nice to have your visit again.

  330. Hehe! The end is not nigh, it’s just the mac and cheese. Phew. A fun and imaginative end to a great series of posts. Congratulations for surviving! I think we’ll all need to get busy dusting.

    It was great having met you, Samantha. I look forward to your future posts. 🙂

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, thankfully just the mac and cheese, Sara.

      So glad to have met you, too, Sara, and I will be back to read more of your delightful and imaginative posts. 🙂

  331. Pat Garcia says:

    I’m laughing again!-:) This is so funny and I’m falling in love with Moriarty. I can see everything so clearly from your descriptions. You have a keen sense of humour.

    Outliers? I’ve got a bunch of those too. If you look at my desk the only thing you see is paper everywhere. Then there’s my iPad. It’s got a whole bunch of outliers where I woke up at 2 or 3 in the morning and began typing out words that The Prophet or The Child was dictating to me. My these characters. They can be really pushy when they have grabbed hold of your imagination. They know they are a part of you and they can be quite fresh.

    Samantha, I have so enjoyed your blog during the A to Z. You have been a blessing to me. When I needed to laugh, then your Moriarty was there with Dickens. Beautiful.

    Congratulations you made it, and I have gained insight into a dear friend that I love.

    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, these pushy characters grabbing hold of our imaginations, Patricia. Thank you for gently prodding me to put their antics into the A-Zs.

      I, too, have gained insight into a dear friend. I think of you often and I love you, too. I would love to hear you sing one day.

      And, speaking of our friendship, I will be back to reply to your touching email soon. It’s just that momentarily I have gotten behind, because Moriarty wouldn’t be pushed into doing my laundry, so I had to catch up on that this morning. 🙂

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  332. Fee says:

    Love, love love! Congratulations on completing the A-Z! I’m so glad I found your blog in my travels this month. I’ll definitely be back in the future 🙂

    Fee | Wee White Hoose
    Scottish Mythology and Folklore A-Z

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you so much for your encouraging compliment, Fee. That means a lot to me. So glad to have found you on the A-Zs, and I will be back to read more. 🙂

  333. Marsha Lackey says:

    Microwave END. What a way to go. So perfectly Samantha. There is always an adventure in your posts and characters beyond imagination. I will miss and I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of the follow up book. Thanks you for all the emotions, that covered so many areas of humanity.

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Marsha. Your comments are always so insightful. I try to relate my stories to universal human experiences. So, hopefully, as you say, I have succeeded a bit. There’s always more, and I will write more. I think Moriarty’s busy right now, though, unpacking his suitcase and seeking a zither teacher. 🙂

      Book coming up, as soon as I get my computer back. Thanks.

  334. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha – the Zephyr wind can gently blow all which ways .. a great tale with many twists .. and here’s the ZZZing around the Round Table – are you coming over to Cornwall to Tintagel .. or will you try another Round Table setting … but I will definitely join you for some Zinfandel … congratulations and good to meet up with you – cheers and see you shortly .. Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — I plan on coming over to Cornwall to Tintagel, at least virtually; would love to join you for some Zinfandel, at the round table or anywhere.

      I am so glad to have met you. Thank you for coming with me and supporting me on this journey. It means a lot to me.

      BTW, I have an English friend here, Barbara, whom I told last evening about your writing on Cornwall. She was very excited and provided some of her own historical knowledge of the area. I emailed her your blog link. So, she’ll no doubt visit and may or many not comment; I don’t know. She is a retired teacher of math and history and has lived all over the world — even taught at Guantanamo.

      Cheers. See you shortly. I got a little behind, as I couldn’t get Moriarty to do my laundry, and had to catch up on that. 🙂

      Samantha

  335. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Goodness, what an escapade! See what happens to you when you don’t get enough sleep! 😉 But, I felt I was right there with you the whole way. I did enjoy your journey. I hope you picked up many friends on your journey. We DID IT! Congratulations!!

    • sammozart says:

      Well, Gwynn, since you were right there with me all the way, you could’ve helped catch the 12 lb. zither flying at me. But, oh, well, this Storyteller got enough sleep that she managed the catch despite a black, fluffy dog being in the middle of the whole thing.

      Yes, it’s been quite a journey and I have thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you for taking the journey with me and for your support. Much appreciated. Made some fascinating new friends, too — some really good writers.

      Hugs.

  336. Robert Price says:

    LMWATWT, (Laughing my way all the way through), love it.

    Write a lot more!

    Ever,

    R.

    • sammozart says:

      I slept with the windows open last night and awakened this morning to a zephyr at dawn and then to read your LMWATWT (glad you translated) — glad you laughed.

      I think the maiden would have been more forthcoming had not the pasha spoken in text lingo to her, so that she could get a handle on what he was about….

      Thx for the writing encouragement, as ever, R.

      S.

  337. Susan Scott says:

    Ah whimsical to the last .. may the zephyr wind continue to blow in and out of your being, your space, your sight and sound Samantha , as you go hither and zither and not get into a tither … that mac and cheese for Jefferson is re-usable and I hope to partake of it and of course the Zinfadel when next at your round table.

    Time now for some real zzz’s what say you?

    • sammozart says:

      As I go hither and zither, indeed, Susan. What might get me into a tither is trying to say zitherist 10 times, fast. 🙂

      Yes, time for some real zzz’s.

      And then for us two, mac and cheese and Zin and camel watching, I’d say.

  338. Thanks for visiting my blog yesterday, Samantha – Hilary is a huge supporter of all the bloggers she follows 🙂 Lovely song.

    Annalisa, writing A-Z vignettes, at Wake Up, Eat, Write, Sleep

    • sammozart says:

      My pleasure, Annalisa. I want to return and read more. Glad you liked the song. Thanks for coming by. 🙂

  339. Pat Garcia says:

    What can I say outside of the fact that the music was a great joy to hear and your article a highlight to read. I have had the privilege of visiting Paris, and some other towns in the province. I looked at the video and it made me think of the cafeteria where I had lunch when I was in Paris. I speak some French, so I looked at the entire video. It has made me desire to visit France again sometime in the future.

    Thank you for sharing this. I enjoyed it tremendously. Music is the only universal language that can stir any heart. It binds and heals wounds.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      I would love to visit Paris, Patricia. People say it is the perfect city for writers, as it matches the writer’s daily rhythm of routine — getting up, going out for coffee, coming home and writing, going out to a café for lunch, writing all afternoon into the evening, and then going out for a late dinner. Suits me. 🙂 So, when I visit you in Italy, we can stop over in France…. (Wish I understood more French.)

      For me, music is it — the universal language of understanding — that, as you say, stirs hearts and binds and heals wounds.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

      • Pat Garcia says:

        Samantha,
        You will find the same thing in Italy. The Italians and the French are famous for their morning coffee, but most Italians drink an espresso. But yes we will visit France too. The people are quite unique. I love the European flair.
        Shalom

  340. Celine says:

    The song is gorgeous, and I immediately saw what they mean by ‘melancholy and light’ , it fits the music just right.

    I think of the song as a greeting, it’s quite hopeful and positive in its own way. A goodbye is often a hello to something else anyway, I know I’ve certainly found that when I said goodbye to everyone I knew and moved across the world to Hong Kong. Goodbyes are never really goodbyes, not with those people who really matter, but there is always a hello after a goodbye.

    • sammozart says:

      You’re right, Celine. Goodbyes are never really goodbyes to those who really matter.

      I suppose you could understand the French introduction to the song? I get the gist, but would like to know what she actually said.

      Thanks for coming by.

      • Celine says:

        Hi Sam, I hadn’t forgotten about this, just took a little while to come back to it with all that was going on!

        In the intro, she explains that she finds it hard to write about her family and where she is from — it’s too close to her so she can’t find words that she’s happy with. She asked a friend – Richard someone (I didn’t catch the surname) to write the lyrics, telling him what she wanted in the song, and he came back a week later with perfect lyrics. They only changed a word or two.
        And then she mentions the guest musicians, saying they have a great sensibility, they write melodies that make you dream, so she was really excited to see what would happen from the collaboration. As it turns out they clicked really well and all really enjoyed the process.

        So there you have it! It’s such a beautiful song, I’m listening to it again as I write this 🙂

        • sammozart says:

          Oh, Celine, thank you so much for translating. I missed a lot by not understanding the French. I would love to learn French and Italian, and maybe I should seriously pursue that. Back in high school and college (in a past lifetime, it seems) I spoke fluent Spanish, but a few years ago I thought my Mexican coworker, who spoke no English, said he ate his horse for lunch, so that language needs brushing up.

          As for the music, I really like Alexandra Streliski’s compositions and have her only album, “Pianoscope.” I thought she was French, but it turns out she’s French Canadian, although she has spent time in Paris.

          Thank you so much for this. A treasure.

  341. Marsha Lackey says:

    Although I speak about six French words, the video was understandable (is that a proper word in this case, lol?). Your post, of course, is so wonderful. The video was icing on the delicious cake. I look forward to you next book and simply know it will be excellent. Thank you for the warmth, passion, love and healing you have provided your audience. You are special beyond word Dear Turquoise Roo.

    • sammozart says:

      Wow, what a compliment. Thank you, Marsha.
      And my next book — thanks for the encouragement and inspiration. That will be my next project, as soon as I get my computer back (instead of working on this Notebook), and have access to my files.

      You are a reader, and I love your insight, always illuminating for me.

  342. Susan Scott says:

    Lovely post Samantha, written in your beautiful style. The computer’s playing up a bit, so I’m not going to chance the playing of the video. Actually now it is playing. How lovely and light. I’ll listen through, what a beautiful woman she is … and though I don’t understand a word, the yearning and lightness comes through. And he so handsome.

    So, we come to an end, always a new beginning … and I love Sara Snider’s comment and as she said about playing the notes. Yes, we’ve made new friends, found our way to others’ terrific writing, new insights into other worlds … and the song has come to an end …

    • sammozart says:

      He is so handsome, Susan, but my personal opinion is that he needs a shave — a little too shaggy for my tastes. But, anyway, I like Alexandra Streliski’s music and enjoyed the ambience of the café and the snow outside.

      You say it all in your second paragraph — the song is coming to an end, but there will be new songs and new notes to look forward to playing. 🙂

  343. I feel truly honored to have been mentioned on your blog, Samantha. You and Susan both write with poignancy and beauty that speaks of deep truths, that I honestly feel honored just to read your writing. So thank you.

    The A to Z Challenge, for all its difficulties in having to blog almost every day, is wonderful for all the reasons you have mentioned. I think this year (my second year participating) has been truly wondrous in regards to all the amazing people I’ve met, you included. I’m glad you decided to participate, and I’m glad you found the experience to be a good one.

    And yet another beautiful song by Alexandra Streliski. I found this one rather hopeful in its tune, so I will imagine it as a possible goodbye, but also a warm greeting. Because that’s often the way of it in life–one thing ends, but another begins.

    • sammozart says:

      I couldn’t have said it better, Sara. I guess this is why Susan and I have remained friends these three years — we’re both deep thinkers.

      Glad you liked the music, too. I am really glad to have met you and hope this is the beginning of a new friendship. Glad you decided to take up the Challenge. I look forward to reading more of your wonderful and charming writing.

      Thanks!

  344. What a beautiful moment and memory. I love that you were able to give a party that your mother also enjoyed in her final days. Daphne sounds like an angel.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I think my mother enjoyed the party, Sara. Daphne is an angel. Amazing family. They have very little yet give a lot.

      She doesn’t use a computer, so she is unable to read all the kind words my readers have said about her. I will pass them along — and she’ll smile, just smile quietly and then go on with the next thing.

      Thanks.

  345. Gwynn Rogers says:

    Ahhhh, at last I can sit and enjoy a cup of Joe with my friend Samantha. A visit would be lovely after all of these years. I love the music. So soothing. I’m glad the Challenge has been a good experience. I enjoy meeting new friends too. I literally met one of the bloggers on Saturday as she lives in Port Townsend. Your cruise blogger lives not far from me too. See… you need to look at HUD here too. You would love Port Townsend!

    • sammozart says:

      I may as well stay here as live in Port Townsend, Gwynn. I want to be with people who love me, where I’m needed and around friends. Thanks.

      Nevertheless, I loved the ambience of this Montreal café with the warm coffee, music and camaraderie inside contrasted with the human activity in the snowstorm outside.

      Yes, and we need a visit. Glad you liked the music, too.

  346. Pat Garcia says:

    That is so true. Those were the irreplaceable offerings of friends that helped you get through Christmas, and it was gift where value cannot be measured.

    I believe Emma lay there in bed and listened. She was contented and maybe she even thought of days gone by when she was the mistress at the table.

    I too was at home in Georgia for my mother’s New Year’s Eve. We watched the year change over, and she was recovering so well when I left. Neither of us knew that within months her health would deteriorate and that I would be flying home to care for her and say goodbye.

    This was a very touching post.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Patricia, I feel fortunate that I have such extraordinary friends — who just took the whole thing in stride — and I like to think that among us we made my mother’s departure happy and pleasant.

      It is comforting that you watched the turn of a new year and a new turn in your relationship with your mother and then that your were able to be there in the end.

      Moments in our lives that touch us deeply. Thank you.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  347. Fee says:

    I love to read your posts at the end of my day. They’re so calming. Beautifully written, once again.

    I can’t believe that tomorrow’s the penultimate day – where did the time go?

    Fee | Wee White Hoose
    Scottish Mythology and Folklore A-Z

    • sammozart says:

      The ultimate compliment. Thank you, Fee.

      Me, too — don’t know where the time went.

      Thanks!

  348. Susan Scott says:

    What a lovely Xmas memory Samantha thank you for sharing it with us! Good on Daphne for ‘insisting’ on getting Emma dressed for the occasion and for all the friends who came by bearing gifts and joy. May this memory live on …

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Susan. You put it all so well and concisely. The memory will live on.

      Yes, and thanks to Daphne and all she did. She loves photography and photographed my mother in her last days, so I have a little album of her all dressed up and with backdrops. Plus a CD video of photos taken throughout my mother’s life that Daphne put together, too, for the funeral service.

  349. Marsha Lackey says:

    Merry Xmas Dear Emma and company. I may, likely, always have this festive vision in my memory. As I’ve often said I’m as much an observer as I am a reader. You bring us into your presence. Thank you so much for continuing your loving and spiritual sharing of your celebrations as well as your challenges. I am going to miss this. Love, Coral Roo

    • sammozart says:

      Thanks, Marsha. I will miss it, too. But, I’ll see what other of these stories, that I didn’t get to tell this time, I can tell in future posts. Especially with Moriarty around: he is the constant throughout.

      Love to you,
      Turquoise Roo

  350. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I completely agree with Hilary’s comment. Your mom must have thoroughly enjoyed that Xmas with the dinner conversations, music, and after dinner chats. Daphne definitely was a treasure. The evening sounded quite fun and lovely. Wonderful post, Samantha! Hugs, Gwynn

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Gwynn, as I just replied to Hilary, I believe Mother did enjoy the event. There was a sense of peace about her.

      Daphne remains a friend and a treasure, as do her family, helping me in lots of ways.

      Hugs,
      Samantha

  351. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha … I’m sure your mother loved hearing the banter, and quietness of voices over the Christmas Fare .. what a generous and wonderful gesture to your mother – and Daphne sounds like a total godsend ..

    Cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      I sensed that Mother did enjoy the banter, Hilary. And, Daphne remains a godsend. She kind of watches over me, and she and her family help me in many ways even now.

      So glad you came by. Thanks.

  352. What a strangely comforting tale. Ghosts can be creepy, but not always. I was convinced my mother’s house was haunted while growing up (I’m still not convinced it’s not), and I saw plenty of creepy and unsettling things there. But there was one time I saw a woman watching me when I woke in the night. It wasn’t scary though. And when I woke the following morning, I felt sad she was gone. I think it’s lovely you have a caregiver ghost in your neighborhood.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, our ghosts are mostly like the people who are living in our town now, Sara — no doubt the ghosts’ descendants. They are kind, open, warm and friendly people.

      You are yet another child who witnessed an otherworldly spirit in human form. She was watching over you — because she knew you were tuned it and would someday write about these phenomena, as you do. How special.

  353. Marsha Lackey says:

    Thank for the beautiful response! Your experiences have given me the chills. Loved both posts and you!!

    • sammozart says:

      I probably could talk endlessly on this subject of otherworldly beings, Marsha. Thank you.

      XX

  354. Hilary says:

    Hi Samantha … my mother for quite a long period would on occasions talk to her relatives who had passed on … the ones I knew and then we’d go on a journey with them … and I’d keep it in my mother’s time frame with them, and the practicalities of doing it in the 21st century … my mother was very happy … I never saw them. We ended up having a very happy gossipy chat all on the same wave length … just in somewhat different time frames … My mother had her marbles, but it didn’t matter if she lost them at time – it was good for her imagination to wander off … or her soul to explore the transition phase .. cheers Hilary

    • sammozart says:

      Hi Hilary — How wonderful you went on the journey with your mther and relatives. I do wonder if your mother had really momentarily lost her marbles.

      My father, in good health a few years before he died at 90, said to me, “I wonder what it’s like when you die.” “Let me know,” I said. I thought he never did let me know, but maybe this is his way and simply haven’t recognized it until now.

      Intriguing. Thanks, Hilary.

      • Hilary says:

        Hi Samantha … to a point I think she was in both dimensions … I wasn’t going to make a fuss … my sister-in-law tried to get my brother to correct her … but if it didn’t matter – why … I could see no sense. My SIL is/was a nurse too … Common sense is so much better at times …

        My mother died and went down the tunnel to the light – but decided she didn’t want to go then … and so lived for another 5 years, in bed and fed via a stomach tube … it was fine … we mostly had good times and she knew what was what …

        Cheers Hilary

        • sammozart says:

          Interesting that your mother changed her mind and lived another five years, Hilary.

          Re correcting them, my aunt lives in a nursing facility and at 101, her mind goes in and out. I just mostly agree with her, because, as you say, why correct her at this stage. It’s fine. She and I are just glad to have the contact.

          Cheers,
          Samantha

  355. Susan Scott says:

    Ah, visitations from the other side helping with the transition. I remember when some days had passed by after my father’s death, and we were in the sitting room, night time, curtains not drawn. Mike who was about 7 or 8 said, oh look Papa Jim has just passed by. When my mother died a few years later he was in the bath when I told him. He was about 12 and that afternoon he was out knocking balls on the tennis court. He said o, Mama Psi came by to say hello. He distinctly heard her and paused awhile to catch her –
    When I dream of my parents who are often at the dinner table I know that they’re visiting and are nourishing in same way or the other – thank you Samantha for this affirming post.

    • sammozart says:

      Isn’t it wonderful, Susan?! That Mike saw them, as children often do, but then later had no fear and took the time to say hi and pass the message along, that’s special.

      I am so glad — honored, really — to have received the affirmations. Interesting, too, how the children are often visited by their grandparents, as was my younger granddaughter visited by my mother (my daughter, as well).

  356. Marsha Lackey says:

    Well!! You know my reaction!!! I am delighted that your mother had all those visitations, assisting her in her transition Home. Too have the awareness of loved ones that had gone before her, in communication with her. I hope we all understand that we have these experiences. The Woman in White must be a comfort to your town. I loved this post as I do the previous ones. Thank you for sharing. Love you very much my friend!!

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, I believe it’s a little step over the edge of consciousness to be aware of these visits, Marsha. Of course I thought of you when I was writing this post, Right up your path, I know.

      Yes, Mother must have done something right to have had all those visitors. I like to think she would be well set with compassionate guidance on her journey as she passed.

      I don’t know how much of a comfort The Woman in White, specifically, is to our town. She is a popular curiosity, though. I think, in addition to her, we have other compassionate spirits here, especially in the Pope-Mustard Mansion(1700s), three doors up from me, where the donut guy was working. The woman who owns that house has many stories to tell of her compassionate spirit housemates — a Revolutionary War soldier, possibly The Woman in White, and a prankster child. They wave to her and she waves back, says hi, and she has felt a compassionate hand on her shoulder.

      What interests me is that in the first few months after we moved here, I was out in the backyard one windy November day, and I said to myself, “Oh, we have ghosts here in this town, lots of ghosts.” That’s before anybody had told me about the ghosts and their stories.

      Anyway, I could go on.

      Love you, too, Marsha.

  357. Pat Garcia says:

    Hi Samantha,
    This is interesting because I remember my mother telling me about my grandmother seeing people they could not see. In fact, the day before my grandmother died, she told my mother that my granddaddy had been there and told her to get ready. He would pick her up when he came from the market. And the next morning, she crossed over in my mother’s arms with a smile on her face.

    I have had two experiences that I consider heavenly experiences that have shaped my life. One a visit from my grandfather on my father’s side and then a visit from my grandmother on my father’s side.
    They were very real. So I believe that we are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses that have gone on before us.
    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Healthcare professionals who daily deal with the dying mostly all say the same thing, Patricia, that they believe the dying receive visits by those who have gone before and that the dying travel in their last days.

      I do believe, as you, that we are surrounded by these witnesses and guides — especially now, after sensing the presence of The Woman in White and having that confirmed. Now I can reflect on the presence of others I sense, and be pretty sure they are here. What an honor and blessing to be visited by your grandparents. Yes, and the more powerful of these visits are life shaping.

      Sometimes my daughter and I have simultaneous sensings, even though we live miles apart.

      I really do want to find out more about this.

      Thank you.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  358. Gwynn Rogers says:

    We do have a mansion with ghosts over in Port Gamble, but nothing close by to me. The only spirit I have sensed has been my brother… however, I just typed “mother” so maybe mom is trying to get a word in here.

    Beautiful description.

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Gwynn, quite possibly both your mom and brother are there watching over you.

      Our town’s ghosts are friendly spirits, thankfully, except for Elizabeth, who is said to be nuts.

      Thanks. 🙂

  359. Pat Garcia says:

    As I read your article the View from the Cupola, I listened to your music. Most of the time when I want to listen to music that is posted in a blog, I get “Prohibited! The music rights are not registered with the GEMA.” It was nice to find out that this was not the case with your article. It is a beautiful piece of music and it speaks of days gone by, of friends that we will not meet again in this life, on this planet. Yet, they are not forgotten.

    Living in Europe, I have learned and I am still learning to carry an extra burden and that is the burden of being so far away from dear friends that live in the USA. Each time I go home and see them I know it could be the last time. I have shed many tears because of a phone call received that has informed me that a dear friend is no longer among us.

    And then my involvement here in the European way of life where again I have people, dear friends, who have opened their hearts to me and made me a part of their family. When we are disconnected by death, it hurts, even though I know I will see them again.

    I like your V – View from the Cupola because it reminds me of my own view from my Cupola. It is a bittersweet view mixed with tears and joy. It is a view that says, everything changes, nothing remains the same.

    Thank you. Your article inspired me to think.

    Shalom,
    Patricia

    • sammozart says:

      Patricia, I feel the same tug as you — California or Delaware. I grew up in this area but lived my whole adult life, nearly 30 years, in Southern California and it feels like home to me. I have many friends there. But I have friends here in Delaware, too, and am established here in town. Definitely two different ways of life — that of small town vs. big city Los Angeles.

      So, for now, it is what it is. And as Sara Snider put it on Susan Scott’s post about dreams being an unfinished symphony, it’s in the process, the playing of the notes.

      If I were more mobile, I think it would ease my dilemma. I have a friend who grew up in this town but lives in L.A. Yet, he is ubiquitous, there but often here.

      I hope this makes sense. I am rather distracted at the moment because the cable guy is here — fixing, no less, a splitter on my phone lines.

      Shalom,
      Samantha

  360. Wow, that piano piece is so incredibly beautiful and inspiring, I love it.

    This post resonated with me. My partner’s father passed away earlier this year after a long battle with cancer, and we’ve been dealing with some of the issues you’ve described here. My own grandmother passed away earlier this month, and that song brings tears to my eyes when I think about her. I like the idea that thinking of those who have gone before us is like posting a thought on the universe. Maybe somehow, somewhere, the ripple of such an act will reach them.

    • sammozart says:

      I agree, Sara, that hopefully the ripple of our thoughts will reach them.

      This minimalist music that Alexandra Strelinski and others compose is defined as “melancholy and light,” and it seems to resonate with lifetime departures. (I think I may include this thought, expanded, in my “Y” post.)

      I’m sorry for your and your partner’s losses of your loved ones. The good news is that they are released from their suffering. I like to think those gone ahead are still around me. I know you must miss your grandmother very much. Who knows, she may be looking over our shoulder and listening to the music, too.

      Thanks, Sara.

  361. “Although caregivers are repeatedly reminded by the observers to take care of ourselves, take time for ourselves, we don’t.” So very true. I don’t know if I mentioned that I work for the Alzheimer Society, but this is one of the things we work on with the caregivers we try to support. For the longest time our family caregiver education series has closed with the “self-care” session, but we find that if participants skip any session, this will be it. Many of our staff now dispense with this session altogether, building self-care exercises and “homework” into every other topic instead. We refer to “building resilience” rather than “self-care,” because (a) it’s less patronizing, and (b) it seems to resonate more with caregivers.

    I love how you phrased this: “You have to get to know yourself again.” So many bereaved caregivers struggle with that loss of identity after so many years of shelving so many aspects of themselves. They struggle with leaving the support groups that have nurtured and bolstered them on their journey, and yet to stay immersed is to stand still–and that’s a poor way to live.

    Four years to regain normalcy. That’s a long time, but then there are a lot of pieces to pick up and contemplate. And, as you say, the grieving is never over. It just changes, becomes easier to carry, perhaps. My own mother died more than twenty-years ago, but every so often a fragment of memory will trip me up and the tears find me again.

    Such a beautiful post, Samantha.

    • sammozart says:

      You put the caregiver experience and aftermath so well, Kern. Good for you, working for the Alzheimer’s Society and that you incorporate self care into the caregivers’ sessions. Building resilience was a major thing I learned from caring for my mother. That has stayed with me. There was really a lot for me to deal with after my mother died — largely, financial considerations, which I am still working with.

      It suddenly gets quiet after the loved one dies and the support groups leave. This is why I feel so fortunate to have met my “Roo” friends, among them Susan Scott, whom I met online a month before my mother’s passing and who still remain my friends. My hospice bereavement counselor continued to visit me monthly for a year after my mother died, and now, three years later, she and our hospice nurse and I are still friends and have lunch or dinner together occasionally.

      Thanks for providing insight from your perspective. Hopefully some will read what we’ve both said here, and it will help them.

  362. Marsha Lackey says:

    Awww Dear Carol, what gentle terms you use to express what so many fear: death. I believe as you do. The spirit is becoming accustomed to leaving the body. Today I spoke to a friend, from as far back as high school. We also worked together and have been close, I believe, many lifetimes. Her younger sister, has been actually dying of many ailments and has dementia. It breaks my heart. My younger brothers died fast. Margaret has suffered losing her sister all this time and Diane must be in a medical facility. The time my other family members, with long term illnesses, came to mind. Shorty thereafter I read your post. It reminded me of what I believe. That is that the spirit is in and out, preparing to leave? A fetus needs to have the spirit enter and leave preparing for birth? I don’t have all the answers, yet I believe a loving God would give our bodies time to adjust to this or the other side. Thank you for your thoughts. I actually feel relieved that it makes sense and someone else may agree. I go with what makes sense. And yes, I feel many around me. Thank you so much for sharing your understandings with all of who ponder life after life.

    • sammozart says:

      Life after life. Yes, to be pondered. Apparently this phenomenon of the spirit’s being here and already there is quite common, so I have read; but I didn’t know about while my mother was in that process.

      It’s quite an experience to watch someone’s long, slow, decline and dying. I never thought I could face it — always avoided it — but when put into the situation, wow, what consciousness raising and a growing (evolutionary) experience.

      If my sharing helps others, then this journey I have experienced is good.

      Thank you, Marsha.

  363. Fee says:

    Your writing is just beautiful. Bless your Grandmother, my heart ached for her when I read the line about her friends’ passing.

    “Often, near the end, the dying enter a process of departure, still here and already there. ” This is so true, and such a perfect way of describing it.

    Fee | Wee White Hoose
    Scottish Mythology and Folklore A-Z

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, Fee, my grandmother made her remark back in the 1940s, when people didn’t live as long. But, she, herself, had a good, long life living with and surrounded by family. It’s interesting, though, what bits of conversation little kids hear, when you think they’re not listening, and remember.

      Since experiencing my mother’s being here and already there, I have read about this phenomenon and that it’s quite common. Intriguing.

      Thanks for your compliment on my writing. It means a lot to me, coming from such an accomplished and beautiful writer as you are.

  364. Gwynn Rogers says:

    I listened to the piano piece as I read you piece and the music made me feel as if I was at the beach resting on a wave enjoying the rolling back and forth. Very soothing. It is difficult to go through the caregiving process no matter how involved in actual caregiving we are. The trauma, the judgment, the stress, and the sadness still are there. Mom has been gone going on eight years and I still feel as if I’m recovering… becoming ME…allowed to be me.

    In fact, I lost a very good and dear high school friend due to breast cancer a few years ago. Her sister and I have become good friends so we celebrate on her sister’s birthday… remembering her. In fact, my “W” is in memory of the fun my friend and I had while in high school. She is still with me, in my heart.

    But caring does not die with the person. Their spirit still surrounds us and encourages us to pick ourselves up to move in new directions and make new connections. I think we are doing that. You left a very beautiful post. Now, I may go play the music again. Hugs…. Gwynn

    • sammozart says:

      You are doing a great job becoming yourself, Gwynn. And I do recall your telling us about celebrating your friend’s b’day every year with her sister. That’s a wonderful thing to do.

      Yes, as you say, their spirit remains with us and the gift they give us to take our lives in new directions is an honor.

      Thank you for your compliment on my post, and I hope you were able to enjoy Alexandra Streliski’s piece again. Not dancy, but as you say, soothing, meditative.

      Hugs,
      Samantha

  365. Susan Scott says:

    Thank you Samantha for this and the music which I’m listening to as I type. The music is very beautiful, lyrical, reaching for the stars and bringing the light back. (I wanted to play it again but I don’t know what happened .. please double check because it’s now on a different you tube setting – and my apologies if I am the cause of changing the setting).

    My husband’s father Graham died at 97 many years ago, and it was a sadness to him that many of his friends had died along the way.

    I especially wanted to remark about the new relationship that one makes with one’s self. I’m thinking of a sort of vacuum when a loved one for whom one has cared so long, is no longer there, and the void is ever present. But slowly the one left behind, catches up and uncovers the neglected parts of one’s self; and new discoveries are made. Samantha, you will always keep growing and reaching for the stars – and bring your light back to us.

    • sammozart says:

      I recognizing the urgency of setting everything in place for my next life, my transition from this lifetime and for the rest of this lifetime. I don’t know why this came out first in my reply to you, Susan; but it’s been on my mind and obviously of imminence. So, that’s where I am on my path.

      The vacuum of being left behind by those who have died is similar, I find, to the empty next syndrome. It was really hard for me when my daughter, Kellie, moved out. But, now I have two granddaughters. I call them all The Three Kellies.

      As for returning the YouTube video, they all end by showing other videos you might like. But there’s a little return/replay symbol in the lower left corner that you touch or click on and the video replays. Alexandra Streliski’s album “Pianoscope” is really nice. It’s just her, solo, playing her minimalist piano compositions. I first heard her music in a movie and from that, found her album.

      Interesting, thoughtful times. Thanks.

  366. Hi Samantha,

    There is a lot to think about in this post. Sensing the spirit of someone that is still alive, loss and old friendships, caring for the carer. You describe it all so well.
    Reflex Reactions

    • sammozart says:

      Yes, a contemplative overview, Ida. The conditions connecting the facets of the whole. An awareness I gained through being caregiver to my mother. I think you can relate.

      Nice to see you here. Thanks.

  367. Marsha Lackey says:

    The words are stuck in my throat. It seems so long ago, yet longer while your mom was in hospice and close to passing over. I joined many writing groups before your title said, “You’re here Marsha”. My first message to you proved me right and I stayed with only one other group and the lady who began that group, joined ours. Yes “ours”! You made it all inclusive. The following month we grieved with you and your family and friends, although they were strangers to us. You no longer were. You were a friend, a bestie, and a new member of a late blooming family

    Carol, you have been and continue to be giving a karmic, spiritual connection that all of us have reached out for. I don’t believe in coincidence. You were chosen by our Creator to wrap us in this incredible group of ladies who would unlikely have ever been brought together, due to our varied places of residence. What a dream come true to win the Lottery and meet someplace special (Sedona comes to mind because of it is a mid location and spiritual focal point).

    For LinkedIn to drop our group only made our love and respect stronger. Thank you LinkedIn!! I have had no reason to return, nor the time. Between you wonderful ladies, my family and friends and other emails and posts, I don’t need another group (although I do have many). This is my group of love and light. The spiritual meals I receive here are more than enough to fill me. I have had to drop out three times, due to illness and/or accident and to return, all arms have caressed me with unconditional love and the essence of eternal closeness. I never left.

    I am proud to be Coral Roo and love all of my Roo sisters!!

    • sammozart says:

      Thank you, Coral Roo, for the kind things you have said about me, and for filling in the details about our group, that I couldn’t fit into my brief post, and for pointing out that indeed we a