Sunday, November 06, 2011

Off Topic - That Was the Week It Was - November 6, 2011

It's Sunday morning, time for my weekly off television topic reflection on the week gone by in both words and photographs I've taken. Unlike last Sunday when I was powerless due to the freak nor'easter which passed through, this week I have power and heat. Thankfully I was out only about a day; others didn't fare that well. Even so, I'm spoiled. It's incredibly annoying to be without power for more than twenty minutes.

This week was active for me. We had the snow aftermath, Halloween, a walk I took just to walk around (and run a few errands) on Halloween day, my return to work after being out for over four months recovering from the knee replacement and kneecap dislocation, and attending this year's Plainfield Library Photo Competition opening and exhibit.

I'm including some photos of the snow aftermath, but I posted others on my Facebook earlier in the week. I hope that link works. Most of my Facebook is Friends Only, but I did make that album public. As I was out and about in town yesterday, I noticed there are still some traces of snow here and there. While the sun has been out every day, it's been chilly and the nights have been below freezing. But, honestly? I don't mind it at all. Autumn and its crisp nip in the air is far preferable than 90 degree high humidity summer days.

My walk about town getting my train pass and stopping by the post office actually was my Halloween. As it's been for ten years in this apartment, I had no children trick or treating even though there are children in the building. Unlike many local schools, Plainfield schools didn't close with power outages or particularly dangerous streets with wires down. I was out early in the day and it was very pleasant. I made the mistake of exploring the various dollar stores ostensibly to find lantern oil (ran out Saturday night) and ended up carrying bunches of cheap stuff that I can use back home with me. No lantern oil though.

On Thursday I returned to work. I set three alarm clocks to make sure I didn't oversleep as I've become quite the night owl in my time off. As I had to walk to catch a train at 6:37, it was dark. My pace is definitely better than pre-surgery, however I really had to watch my footing on uneven spots or where branches were still strewn about. I don't dare fall.

Work itself, both days I worked this week -- Thursday and Friday -- went fine. We had just switched to new computer software before I left. So I ended up slightly lost as I had only worked a few days on the new system. It was good to see folks and find out that people actually missed me. Ah, warm fuzzies. I have a new boss whom I had met briefly after my surgery. I like him. This is all going to be fine. My knee held up well, my energy level not so much. It takes a good six months to a year (or more) to really feel recovered with both the knee and regaining stamina. I ended out conking out on the couch at 8 PM Friday night.

Yesterday I headed to the library for the annual Photo Competition. Since the library had some of my works on exhibit all summer, I was invited to submit photos out of competition. That means I wouldn't be eligible for any awards. Since I really enjoy the competition, the idea behind it (to build a photographic history of the town) and the folks involved in it, I entered four photos. And, oh my ... I ended up winning an "Out of Competition" certificate and ribbon for one of them! I wasn't expecting that at all. Cool!

The photo which won first prize this year was by a newcomer to the competition and taken about five blocks from me. While it wasn't anything artsy, it was an amazing shot of the flooding aftermath of Irene -- men wading waist high in the flood waters to rescue a stranded motorist whose car was all but underwater. Great dramatic shot and it shows that the people in this town will help out others in need!

Welp, enough blathering. I'll be getting a Peapod grocery delivery a little bit later today and need to rest up for catching that 6:37 AM train tomorrow! Remember to hit the "read more" link to see all of the photos. Clicking on an image will open it larger in a new window ... more of a gallery with the new Blogger set-up.
Library Park Lamp

After I left the library yesterday, I found myself all alone in Library Park. The leaves are probably slightly past peak right now, but it was still colorful with the bright blue cloudless sky as a backdrop. It's fun to walk with leaves crunching under my feet. Have I mentioned how much I really love autumn?

Another Bird on a Wire

The European Starling is considered a nuisance bird here in the United States. It was introduced by someone determined to bring every bird mentioned in the works of William Shakespeare into our country. Well, that worked. They're here to stay -- all 200 million (or more) of them. (Gosh, I love the Internet. I can learn ANYTHING here!) Although a "nuisance bird," they sure do make the neatest sounds and quite an array of them!

Wanna buy a mattress?

This brand new mattress was at the corner of Berckman and East Second Street when I headed off to the library and was still there when I returned four hours later. I would guess it must have fallen off someone's car or truck. I was surprised no one had snagged it. I don't really have a use for it, nor could I lug it around the corner home. Hopefully either the rightful owners will return for it or some person who really needs it will take it. Mattresses aren't cheap and this one was still wrapped in plastic with no signs of damage.

Sunset over Plainfield

The sun was just starting to set when I got off the train Thursday after work. This is the view from the Plainfield Train Station parking lot.

Fall Colors

Looking towards the Plainfield Train Station, corner of Watchung and North, Friday after work. Ignore the small snow pile. It will be gone shortly! (I have a photo of it taken Monday down a bit.)

Unitarian Glass

This is a section of the Unitarian Society's front stained glass window. Park Avenue, Plainfield.

A Sidewalk Goes Around It

In Library Park, a sidewalk actually circles around a tree. Neat! Luckily the tree has weathered all of the bad weather. The sidewalk would look silly doing that sans tree!

Looking Up Part 1

Have I mentioned how much I really love autumn? Library Park, Plainfield.

Looking Up Part 2

My favorite season of the year! Fall, spring, winter, summer. That's my order of seasons. Library Park.

Halloween Snow

I took this shot on Monday. This is the house where they have the bird feeder on the dead tree tied to their fence. They're still feeding the birds and there haven't been any more murders there.

Against the Fence

I couldn't resist the red of the leaves in this shot. This is the main post office parking lot fence at the corner of Watchung and East Second in Plainfield.

Pete's Ash Market?

There may be no "i" in team. Yet we really need an "i" in FISH. Pete's gonna lose it if he doesn't get it fixed soon! East Second Street, Plainfield.

Snow Piles Way Too Early

Gah! Too early! Corner of Watchung and North by the Plainfield Train Station. I took this shot on Halloween day.

Global Warming

Watchung Avenue on Halloween day looked like mid-January. I edited this one to leave only the neon Texas Wiener sign in color.

Odd Merchandise Mix

How did they decide they'd sell this odd conglomeration of goods? Maybe I'll start a store. I'll carry only cat food, books and Cheetos. How's that? East Front Street, Plainfield.

No More Value Man

I guess it's been a long time since I ventured downtown roaming about on foot. This store was always The Value Man and now it's not. I always think the building itself is cool. I'd love a loft apartment on the top floor (with an elevator, please). East Front Street, Plainfield.

They did have a plan

Last week (I think it was) I photographed the painting going on at the UHaul building. I made some negative comments about it as they painted over the letters and it was all a boring beige-ish tan. Well, they had a plan ... I shouldn't have doubted them. This does look more attractive. Taken Monday, East Front Street in Plainfield.


By Thursday morning as I headed to work, all of these pseudo-gates lined that very side of the building. Now, there's only one real window under the one gate. That's weird. Now I'm doubting them again.

Tree Carnage

This had been the last standing tree right up close to the Presbyterian Church on East Front Street. In the time since I've lived here, a good half-dozen trees there have been felled by storms. This one suffered the early snow last week. I think it's probably dead Jim.

You woke me up why?

Look at those fangs! When I was out of work healing, Vincent always greeted me at the door on days I ventured out to physical therapy, doctor appointments, whatever. But he didn't go crazy. Now that I've gone back to work, he's once again trying to climb, jump, etc. on me the second I come in the door. His goal is my right shoulder and he wants me to carry him around while he purrs frantically in my ear. At least twenty minutes of placating him upon my return. He even did it when I was gone for about four hours yesterday. What a baby!

How was your week?


Delee said...

Heading out the door so will comment later and look at all the photos! Glad you are getting back into a routine, but sleeping late can not be beat!

Petals said...

love love love the photos, especially "Looking up 1 & 2".

Sally said...

Congratulations on winning a ribbon on your photo! Sounds like the "out of competition" category might need a slightly different title.

It's good to hear that your return to work is going smoothly, even if it's a big adjustment for Vincent. He sure provides a warm welcome home for you.

I like seeeing sidewalks that jog around big old trees. There's one across the street from me--a sign that some city planner or engineer actually valued nature and whimsy over convention.

Becky said...

Finally had a chance to check out this week's photos. Great job -- as usual. Love and look forward to seeing Vincent each week.

Delee said...
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