Surprising contrasts on a quiet walk.

Sunday afternoon I took the trolley to East County to enjoy a quiet walk near Gillespie Field. I knew that along Marshall Avenue there’d be no traffic.

As I walked down the long, empty sidewalk I turned my eyes toward sleepy hangars across the street, burgeoning spring flowers at my feet and a large construction site abandoned for the day. All I heard was the whisper of the breeze, birds flitting here or there and small planes rising into the sky.

The time and place was perfect for a stretch of thinking. I’m struggling with a short story that is particularly difficult. It’s a story about the complexity of people and the small actions that help to define a life. I keep changing the words.

As I walked along in a state of abstraction I slowly became aware of surprising shapes and contrasts in the world all around me. Exactly like the complexity we find in ourselves.

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!

A photographic adventure by the water.

I enjoyed a small photographic adventure yesterday evening.

Walking along the Embarcadero, camera in hand, I gazed out toward San Diego Bay and the descending sun. Occasionally I paused to frame long shadows, glowing clouds, silhouettes and bright reflections on the water.

These photographs represent a segment of my walk from Broadway Pier to the Greatest Generation Walk, just south of the USS Midway.

The exaggerated contrasts in these photos were produced by my camera’s automatic mode. When I shoot into the sun, many of the resulting images can appear very dramatic. And darkly mysterious!

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!

What’s that up there?

A dirty spot.
A dirty spot.

During a recent morning walk through downtown San Diego and the Gaslamp Quarter, my curious eyes kept turning upward.

What’s that up there?

New paint.
Fresh paint.
The sun about to rise.
The sun about to rise.
A baseball cap.
A baseball cap.
Machu Picchu.
Machu Picchu.
Construction at the 1887 Grand Pacific Hotel.
Construction at the 1887 Grand Pacific Hotel.
A guy hanging from the roof of a hostel.
A guy hanging from the roof of a downtown hostel!

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!

Mysterious reflections of ships on water.

Reflection on the water of HMS Surprise.
Reflection on the water of HMS Surprise.

Early this morning I walked from Cortez Hill down to San Diego Bay. I spent a few quiet minutes between the Maritime Museum of San Diego and the Grape Street Pier.

The sun was very bright. It wasn’t long before I noticed wavy reflections of ships on the water!

Without reading the photo captions, can you identify each ship by its mysterious reflection?

Reflection on the water of Steam Ferry Berkeley.
Reflection on the water of Steam Ferry Berkeley.
Reflection on the water of HMS Surprise and Steam Ferry Berkeley.
Reflection on the water of HMS Surprise and Steam Ferry Berkeley.
Reflection on the water near USS Dolphin of Steam Ferry Berkeley.
Reflection on the water near USS Dolphin of Steam Ferry Berkeley.
Reflection on the water of Medea, Pilot, America, San Salvador, and Californian.
Reflection on the water of Medea, Pilot, America, San Salvador, and Californian.
Reflection on the water of Admiral Hornblower.
Reflection on the water of Admiral Hornblower.
Reflection on the water of Star of India.
Reflection on the water of Star of India.
Reflection on the water of Star of India.
Reflection on the water of Star of India.
Reflection on the water of Star of India.
Reflection on the water of Star of India.

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!

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.

Sunrise at Balboa Park’s Desert Garden.

This morning I spent a few minutes in Balboa Park’s Desert Garden, enjoying a beautiful sunrise.

I had hoped to take photos of new snow on the mountains east of San Diego, but they were too distant for my small camera. What I did discover as I walked down one path was completely unexpected, and indescribably powerful…

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!

A silvery, sparkling tree in Little Italy.

Stand in certain spots on the North Embarcadero, look east toward Little Italy, and your eyes might be dazzled by a sparkling tree on a large wall.

The glittery abstract tree decorates the west side of the Broadstone Little Italy building, near the corner of Grape Street and California Street. The branches of the mirror mosaic rise above train and trolley tracks. As the sun descends toward San Diego Bay, the silvery tree really shimmers and shines.

I’ve learned that the artist’s name is Stephanie Clair and that her piece is called The Shimmer Tree!

The Shimmer Tree, public art in San Diego's Little Italy neighborhood by Stephanie Clair.
The Shimmer Tree, public art in San Diego’s Little Italy neighborhood by Stephanie Clair.

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!