Sunday, January 01, 2012

Off Topic - That Was the Week It Was and Happy New Year 2012!

Happy New Year!

I'm posting this a bit earlier than usual -- at midnight, for some odd reason! My best wishes for a happy and healthy 2012 (or, I believe, 5722) to all. Over the years, the community on this blog has become a part of my life ... and definitely a welcome part! I can only hope each and every one of you have a wondrous and amazing year ahead.

Thinking back on this past year, 2011 actually was a good year for me. Finally I have two knees which are, for the most part, painless. I've had chronic knee pain for more than twelve years and I can finally walk once again without pain. Sure, it was a bit rough getting there with the knee replacements. However, except for the dislocation kerfuffle with the new right knee, the recovery was so much easier than the first knee!

Also in 2011, I had a fantastic vacation in the Outer Banks of North Carolina with fabulous friends I originally "met" through this very blog! Laurie, Margo, Ruth, Marge, Elaine, Delee, Ann and a tremendously cool waterfront house made me forget my knee was still healing! Wild horses, the ocean, great food and fun. You can't beat that with a stick!

Also in 2011, I had my first invitational photography exhibit. True, it was the local city library and not some fancy-schmancy gallery in SoHo. But it was an honor to have my photographic works on exhibit all summer at the Plainfield Public Library. Perhaps 2012 will brng about a fancy-schmancy artsy exhibit in NYC and worldwide photography recognition! Well, I can dream, can't I?

There have been some down moments during 2011. However, I've definitely had worse years throughout my life. Thanks to my new knee, I feel better than I have in years. Vincent (the cat) is still a treasure and remains in excellent health. I can't complain. Well, I could but that would be whiny and ungrateful of me. So I won't.

I do have one brief whine. I sort of kind of broke my best camera. It technically works, I guess. But I dropped it on Christmas Eve. Since then, each time I take a photo, it wants me to input the date and time. I can skip the step, but then the photo file has no date or time and each photo becomes its own folder. Ack! It's a nightmare when I take lots of photos and put them on my computer.

For a few days I couldn't figure out what was wrong. Then I realized there's an opening on one side there never was before. Huh? I researched online and found out there had been a door there with an internal battery (not to be confused with the regular batteries). That battery controls at least the date and time. GRR! I found the battery size -- a watch type battery -- and will order it from Amazon. I also found the missing battery holder/door doohickey on Ebay. So it looks like I can fix it myself. 

With the camera the way it is, it's put a damper on my photo taking this past week. I ended up taking my next best camera out just so I'm not as annoyed. The zoom on that one isn't as good. But least it doesn't want me to program in the date and time with each photo! Soon I'll have my first DSLR camera as I'm buying a used one from a friend ... that I met on the blog! I can't justify a new one, but it will be a treat for me nonetheless. I've never had anything other than a point and shoot. Maybe that fancy-schmancy gallery exhibit might just happen!

Onto the photos ... these are from the past couple of weeks ... 

Times Square

NO ... not tonight (or last night)! I'm not crazy! I stayed home! Do you know that you have to go through a metal detector to get in Times Square on New Year's Eve these days? I fail that at airports and courthouses. No way would I even think of going into that mass of people going through that! I took this shot a couple of weeks ago when I went into town. With the latest lighting, Times Square has an almost pinkish brighter than daylight color about it.

Just an illusion

Playing with the "Illusion" filter on the GIMP photo editor, this is a street lamp in Bridgewater, NJ.

Holiday police

Huh. The Plainfield Police Station has two less trees than last year and only white lights. Last year they had blue and white lights. The city tree in front of City Hall is done up in red lights. Alas, it's never lighted when I'm near it!


Penn Station departures board

For those of you who don't visit the city, huge crowds gather around this train departures board. You do not want to be standing in the way when the letters flip to reveal what track a train is arriving for boarding. Penn Station is where I end up when I take the train to the city. Grand Central Station is where I arrived at back when I lived in Connecticut. Grand Central is SO much more classy! The original Penn was cool, but this one is "eh."

Last work bound train of 2011

Saturday morning, December 31, 2011. Plainfield Train Station.

Under the Texas Weiner ... sign

A different angle on the sign. It was raining as I stood under it. Watchung Avenue, Plainfield.

Moss does grow on stationary stones

A testament to all of the wet weather here this year. This stone fence surrounds a cemetery in Bound Brook. I've never seen it grow moss before. Mountain Avenue.

The longest night

It was the Longest Night on the day I went for the six month follow-up appointment for my knee. Knee got an A. I didn't use the sanctuary of the Presbyterian Church on Union Avenue in Bound Brook. I prefer my home as a sanctuary.

Solitary walk

I walk alone early in the morning. East Third Street approaching the Plainfield Train Station.

No thanks

Perhaps decades ago, these row houses were nice. But no. Not now, thank you. East Second Street in Plainfield.


The moon hides behind barren branches.

Donuts before dawn

The Plainfield Donut Shop -- a friendly oasis in the pre-dawn hours! Watchung Avenue.


The spots light up the "Bull Durham" building which is still standing. North Avenue, Plainfield.

Still awaiting demolition

You can barely see the ghost sign on the building due to the spotlights and soot. Thankfully I have taken many photos of it over the years well before the building burnt.

Plainfield Police mobile unit

Stationed at the Bull Durham building.

Night windows

This is perhaps 35th Street, not far from Penn Station, NYC.

Cymbal Monkey, Lennon and Boop

An odd collection of goods in the window of a store outside of Times Square, Manhattan.

Largest collection of shrunken heads!

"Hey! After we watch the ball drop, let's go see some shrunken heads!" Times Square.

Vincent imbibed too much!

Like a chicken in every pot, Vincent wishes catnip for all and to all a good year!

My best wishes to all for 2012!


Donna in Alabama said...

Happy New Year Jackie!
and all bloggies!

Your pictures are extraordinary! Just a guess but is that the north wall of the cemetary? LOL

Poor Vincent's head tomorrow will be aching! Give extra catnip, you know "hair of the dog".

Here's to bigger and better recognition of your photographic excellance!!

Jackie said...

Thanks, Donna! It's the west wall, but it might be a bit northwest.

Have a great new year and hopefully we'll have some good television seasons ahead!

Anonymous said...

mmmmmm Texas Weiners...i may need to make a trip home soon for some dogs! Happy new Year Jackie!!

Donna in Alabama said...

I was taught moss only grows on the north side of trees, etc. Maybe that is just in the south? I know only the north side of my house gets it.

Survivor will be back in Feb right? Does TAR come on again soon?

Donna in Alabama said...

I was taught moss only grows on the north side of trees, etc. Maybe that is just in the south? I know only the north side of my house gets it.

Survivor will be back in Feb right? Does TAR come on again soon?

Jackie said...

It should grow on the north side, yes. But this moss is definitely west-ish side, perhaps a bit to the north. I didn't walk around the whole cemetery, though.

Yes, new Survivor in February. I think new TAR too! And American Idol and more! Right now we're in TV doldrums.

Delee said...

The moss stone wall is beautiful! Thrilled you will get a fancy camera, can not wait for those photos!

Poor Vincent, S is recovering from 5 nights in lock-up (LOL). Takes around 24 hours to sleep off the affects of all the excitement! Her voice takes much longer, at least it is a bit quieter here!

Happy New Year to all! I have high hopes for this year. Except it will be an expensive New Year! Oh well, I can not take it with me!

Bernice said...

You certainly are Plainfield's best chronicler! Keep that camera eye open in 2012 to enlighten and entertain the rest of us!

SueGee said...

To all my pool party mates - may you have a great 2012! Looking forward to "watching" the shows with you and tossing down some cold ones!

Jackie - may you have a great 2012 too and keep up the great blogging!! I'm sure looking forward to the return of some new shows soon and the end of Football delays LOL!

Sue on the left coast

Sally said...

Jackie, thank you for providing week after week of enjoyable Sunday visits in 2011! Your interesting photographs, clever captions and keen observations make each Sunday visit a treat. You have a real talent for photography (subjects, angles, lighting, etc.) regardless of what camera you're using. I look forward to what you'll do in 2012!

Happy new year to you, the very photogenic Vincent and all your blog readers!