Thursday, December 31, 2009

Dec 31, Part 2 - Bend: Snow day

It snowed during the night. For reasons not quite known, I woke up and 4:30 and didn't go back to sleep. No doubt, it has to do with helping Lee pack for his trip. We muscled and coaxed all of the stuff he wanted to take into a backpack and one smallish carry-on. It felt like a sustained effort in puzzle-solving. The trip is four months long, and he's going to be in quite an array of different places with who-knows-what requirements. We were both a little stressed afterwards, but I was thrilled with how well it all fit together, including some bulky things we thought we might have to leave out. I should have taken a few pix of the process, but I was focused mentally, and not with the lens. I'm sure I'll have pictures of the bags before he leaves on Sunday.

It was still snowing when we left for Starbucks.

And it was also reasonably early - and dark from the weather. I like the way the light glowed as we pulled out of the garage.

Snowing. . . .

At the Starbucks parking lot in Bend. I love the colors provided by the guitar van.

From inside Starbucks with reflection. I posted it here also.

By the time we left Starbucks, the world had progressed a bit more in its transformation.

This was our view from inside the Pathfinder. Snow during coffee = a little more build-up.

Home again, and the street is buried a little further. They said it could snow an inch an hour today for much of the day. As it turned out, precipitation was lighter than predicted, but it was fun to watch, and we opted not to drive to Portland today, which was the original plan. Freezing rain is supposed to follow the snow around noonish today. The Christmas lights that were on in the first picture are now off.

The bird feeder looks bleak, and snow blows from the rooftops as it continues to fall from the sky.

I upped the shutter speed to show the flakes.

It isn't really that cold. Snow is melting off the kitchen window.

Finches (?) at the feeder. This is a male with his red head.

I didn't get many chances to get a good pic of the female. They were inclined to scatter when they saw me.

Nice finch. Thank you. He'd take a seed from the feeding tray behind the tube, then poke his head out this side and spit out the shell, or at least that appeared to be the process.

Dec 31, Part 1 - Bend, Oregon: Weekend Reflections, "Warm Inside"

We were supposed to drive to Portland today (three hours, crossing the high desert and the pass over Mt. Hood), but a snow storm started early with anticipated freezing rain still to come, making today one of the worst driving days all year if it pans out. I took this photo at Starbucks around 8:00 a.m, while we were still discussing whether or not to hit the road. Now at 10:48, I'm home, still watching the flakes turn into inches. We'll put off the drive to Portland until tomorrow. The photo? Nothing special, just a reflection of the day, but I've always liked these hanging orange lamps.

See more Weekend Reflections here . . . but I'm a day early. You may have to wait until Saturday.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Dec 28, Bend: Cold and warm

The wall across the street that retains the ground for the church and its parking lot finally looked interesting today with snow emphasizing its lines.

Usually Safeway is one of the coldest places in town, but today it seemed positively warm in contrast with the outdoors, and the colors felt warm compared to the outside black and white winterland.

Some apples and eggs. Let's just ignore the M&Ms and Reese's Bars. We've been snacking on cookies this season already. Mmmmmm.

Safeway from the outside. Cold.

Toward evening we went out again. I thought the antennae on this truck were amusing. Someone adapted it rather creatively to hold pipes.

This is Paul's building. It's just been painted. I like the colors and I like the lights.

Speaking of lights, I haven't taken that many photos this year with Christmas lights (nor in any other year, but I've taken a lot more photos this year, so it would seem that I'd have more of lights, too). I think it's been cold both here and Astoria, and not very tempting to stand outside and try to get exposures right. Inside this rug store, I thought I'd take a pic of this funky reindeer. Kinda cute. He has personality, anyway.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Dec 26, Bend: Splashes of color in a black and white world

Winter in Bend, Oregon We drove into Bend last night in the dark, and weren't able to see the fairy kingdom made by frozen fog on trees and bushes until this morning. I took all of the photos in this post in color, and I didn't change the color in Photoshop. A few of the photos came out really well. Others are included to help me remember the day.

Winter in Bend, Oregon There was only a dusting of frost on the ground - no snow - but every branch and needle were covered in lacy white, making the green of the trees look more black than green by contrast. After this week, I won't be back to Bend for a number of months, so I've included a lot of photos in today's post. It was magical being out in these conditions.

Winter in Bend, Oregon First stop, Starbucks, where the papers were full of the news of the fizzled "device on Flight 253. This is when I realized what an entirely different feel the day would have had if the thing had gone off - not only for family and friends of the passengers, but for everyone. Of course, the news continued to be filled with bits about airport security failures, failures to make use of information in databases, etc. The consequences will not be over at the end of the day, even though (thankfully), the passengers touched down safely.

Winter in Bend, Oregon We stopped in a parking lot, because we wanted to take photos of various plants we'd seen along the roadside. There were a few colorful leaves on this dark green bush.

Winter in Bend, Oregon This one came out really well. It may help to enlarge it.

Winter in Bend, Oregon I took this because I liked the shape of the small trees. When I saw it, I liked the color in the otherwise-monochromatic scheme.

Winter in Bend, Oregon Heh. Iced mocha today? Actually, I've been getting cold coffee drinks lately, but not at McDonald's.

Winter in Bend, Oregon Aesthetically, I could have left this one out, but I like the variety of trees covered in frost.

Winter in Bend, Oregon
Winter in Bend, Oregon Approaching the traffic circle.

Winter in Bend, Oregon This is one of the things I wanted to photograph. I like the deer in the wreath and the feathery white background. Bend has sculptures of one sort or another in every traffic circle in town, or nearly all of them. Some are realistic and some are not. I think the city has done a nice job trying to beautify the sterile new streets.

Winter in Bend, Oregon The exposure isn't quite right here, but I liked the sun glow on the trees that were painted on the door to Pine Mountain Sports. It looked very nice as we entered.

Winter in Bend, Oregon We stopped at Strictly Organic for some breakfast burritos, and this was the view out the window in front of the counter where you can sit down to eat. I've had their coffee before, and I think it's the worst I've ever had anywhere. In fact, after much consideration, I threw it out. But their burritos were fantastic.

Winter in Bend, Oregon The bell-shaped lights are reflections from inside Strictly Organic.

Winter in Bend, Oregon The "numbers" they give you that correspond with your order aren't numbers at all, but countries. Funny that we got Tanzania, because Lee will be there on his upcoming trip, so he was able to show me his route and where he'd be staying. I'm certainly looking forward to the photos.

Winter in Bend, Oregon More reflections, more frost. I like the shape of the arch in the bricks, too.

Winter in Bend, Oregon I took this out the other window. I like a number of the elments here, but the first thing that caught my eye was the unusual coloring of the trim.

Winter in Bend, Oregon Again from the cafe window: red, red, nice shapes of the bike rack, and a square within a square.

Winter in Bend, Oregon In the corner of the room behind us as we were eating, was this nice tree painted on the wall.

Winter in Bend, Oregon The counter where we ate was cool. I think it must be palm wood in laminated rectangles. The next photo shows what nature can do in Creative Design class.

Winter in Bend, Oregon Isn't that wonderful? The smaller dots look like a jaguar's coat.

Winter in Bend, Oregon I'm not sure why I included this one. It was just part of the moment.

Winter in Bend, Oregon Strictly Organic supplies water for dogs. But today a dog would need an ice pick.

Winter in Bend, Oregon Frosty bike. Cool bike rack design.

Winter in Bend, Oregon I've taken pictures of these grates before and liked the color better without the frost, but this time I noticed the type: It says, "Bend, Oregon - Est. 1905."

Winter in Bend, Oregon Oak leaves. I love the pale brown.

Winter in Bend, Oregon This is one of my favorite pix of the day. I took it through the windshield of the car, looking at the lacy white-on-white trees on the right, but it turned into a nice composition, and and love the colored sign, too. We were almost home.