Help a fireman assist burn victims.

Did you miss the opportunity to drop a donation into a firefighter’s boot at a San Diego intersection this morning?

You can still help the Burn Institute educate the public about the danger of fire, and assist and provide care for the severely burned.

Donate online here!

Japanese music, pottery in Balboa Park.

Today I walked into the Exhibit Hall at the Japanese Friendship Garden in Balboa Park just in time to listen to a wonderful small concert.

I seemed to drift into a living dream as I listened to extraordinarily beautiful music played on the traditional Japanese koto and shakuhachi. The musicians, Kyoko Takeda and Jon Crick, talked about the pieces they performed, and the instruments they played.

I heard flowing streams, and the wind, and deer calling, and raindrops, and notes rising and falling, and echoing mysteries, and perhaps even a whisper of the essence of life.

After the concert, I walked about the Exhibit Hall and enjoyed looking at the current exhibition, which is titled Tradition and Beyond. Five talented San Diego potters have used traditional Japanese ceramic techniques to create organic pieces. I saw a flowing, easy, natural beauty, spun carefully from the human spirit, much like music.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

To read a few stories I’ve written, visit Short Stories by Richard.

Ceramic faces express humanity and heart.

I’ve always loved Spanish Village in Balboa Park. I still remember going there as a young adult and immediately feeling a sort of spiritual connection. One feels free and alive in this magical place.

Today I was walking through Spanish Village when I paused outside Studio 13. My feet are often drawn to this particular studio. I’m not sure why.

Sylvia Mejia, the ceramics artist who works in Studio 13, and I spoke a few friendly words. She invited me inside.

I found myself surrounded by many faces.

Happy faces.

Soulful faces.

Expressive, deeply human faces.

Have a look with me:

Sylvia Mejia, in Spanish Village Art Center's fantastic Studio 13, surrounded by her ceramic creations.
Sylvia Mejia, in Spanish Village Art Center’s fantastic Studio 13, surrounded by her ceramic creations.

May you live all the days of your life.
May you live all the days of your life.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

Do you love Balboa Park? Check out my other website Beautiful Balboa Park!

A short story about travelling hearts.

I was startled this morning during my walk through the Gaslamp Quarter.

Something peculiar was moving directly toward me along the sidewalk. For a split second I thought it was a person.

Then I did a double take.

A bundle of heart-shaped balloons was heading my way!

The cluster of balloons moved slowly down the sidewalk, propelled by a gentle breeze. Occasionally they’d float upward a foot or two, then quietly float back to Earth.

The travelling hearts came to a street corner. They seemed to hesitate. They turned decisively and began steadily down another sidewalk!

After venturing into a patio space in front of one building, they lifted with apparent delight and settled down. They leaned against the rail.

Perhaps they wanted to watch people–other travelling hearts–go by.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

To read a few honest-to-goodness short stories that I’ve written, click Short Stories by Richard.

Help reopen Christine’s downtown coffee cart!

I’m not a regular customer of Christine’s Coffee, but I often walk down B Street past the downtown coffee cart, and I’ll grab a hot chocolate on super cold mornings. If Christine happens to see me as I pass by she always smiles and waves. She is the friend of many. She is an important part of the life of our city.

So it was shocking to see a notice on her boarded-up cart about a month ago that explained her cart had been torched by an arsonist. Apparently is was set on fire in the middle of the night by a transient.

A couple days ago I spotted another notice on her destroyed cart. It explains that she has a GoFundMe page, and has plans to reopen the coffee cart.

If you’d like to help Christine, please go to her GoFundMe page here.

A past blog post featured the friendly wave of Christine at her coffee cart. That smile and wave need to be restored! Please click the link to her GoFundMe page and help out!

UPDATE!

Christine’s Coffee has reopened!

Inspiring street art in Golden Hill.

Many colorful butterflies seem to have landed atop an electrical box in Golden Hill, forming a heart.
Many colorful butterflies seem to have landed atop an electrical box in Golden Hill, forming a heart.

Walk down one particular sidewalk in Golden Hill and you might find this inspiring street art.

The messages painted on the electrical box are simple but powerful.

Inspiring street art reveals the sun's bright message . . . Still I rise.
Simple, inspiring street art reveals the sun’s bright message . . . Still I rise.
I am riding a rainbow with a bow and arrow. Try to be a rainbow in someone's cloud.
I am riding a rainbow with a bow and arrow. Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

How to paint light in the city.

I finished writing another short story. This one is titled Light at the Edges.

I don’t know how to paint, but I do like to watch artists animate their canvases with small dabs of color. I also observe people, and the effect of light upon the human heart.

How does one paint light?

I hope this little story, about living in the big city, and human generosity, makes you smile.

Read it here.