Welp, it was New Year's this past week. Years ago, I did celebrate. But nowadays I prefer to stay home or, if out, only to the home of friend for a mini-celebration. I find the amount of drunk drivers out there on the roads is scary to begin with. When you add in the amateurs, it's much better to stay inside!
We had some snow and ice here on the Saturday before, so when I headed out to work pre-dawn on New Year's Eve (day), I had to deal with lots of ice on the sidewalks. It's sad that I'm walking up on people's lawns to avoid their icy sidewalks! The snow is easier to walk on -- more traction. Of course, if they had salted their walks, I wouldn't be all over their lawns.
The sun has taken care of most of the snow on the walks and many lawns since. Although we've had typical cold January temperatures, only snow piles and snow in areas which don't get much sunlight remain.
Since I didn't take any impromptu trips into the city this week, it was a rather mundane kind of week. I like a four-day work week for sure. But, since it's dark when I go to work, getting dark or outright dark when I get home -- my photo taking tends to suffer. Plus, it's been COLD. So, last week was an overabundance of photos, this week not so much.
I did encounter two cute kid tales this week. Since I don't have children, I just have to watch what the children of others are doing. On Monday, with the snow still all about, I saw three kids playing with the snow -- making snowballs, dunking snow on each other and such. The youngest was perhaps three or four years old. As their mother told them they were going into a store, I saw the youngest duck down around the corner and ... wait for it ... he FILLED ALL HIS POCKETS WITH SNOW! Jacket pockets, pants pockets, too. I don't think he grasps the concept that it's going to melt. And, I could just see the mother wondering why her child is dripping all over the store.
The other cute kid story was something which probably isn't really allowed by the company, but she was adorable. Last night, a young girl, perhaps six or seven years old, was helping her father at his job. His job is being a New Jersey Transit train conductor. She was having such fun that it was infectious. I made her father get out the special flashlight to shine on my monthly pass which now bears a snowflake under its light. He told me that she begs to go with him all the time and this was the third time he's taken her along. Later in the evening when the train gets a bit rougher, he sends her to the back (in an empty car) for a nap.
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|Sunset at the Plainfield Train Station|
Once again, lots of overcast skies this past week. But one day boasted a nice sunset.
|What is going on here, Vincent?|
Has someone been rolling in catnip?
|It's spring! It's SPRING!|
I spotted several dandelions trying to thrive on a hill which takes advantage of good sun cover (when the sun is out). However, this contradicts the old Rolling Stones song. Dandelions DO lie. It's far from spring. Sigh.
I've known that the quiet cars have existed on the trains for a few years now and have seen some exterior signage. They're the last cars of trains during peak commuting times. Unfortunately, my ride isn't considered peak although I do travel those hours. I just go the wrong way. When everyone is heading towards NYC/Newark, I'm going the other way and vice versa.
I also don't sit in the last car with the exception of Fridays when train friend Donald saves me a seat in a four-seater. He's a last car rider; I'm a second to last car rider. But, since we want to sit together and he gets on before me in Newark ... it's the last car on Fridays. Yet, this is the first time I've seen this posted. I'd love it if the times I ride would include this. The biggest problem is the people shouting at their cell phones.
|Same sunset as earlier, different spot|
I took this shot from the parking lot on the south side of the Plainfield Train Station.
|Gaggle in flight|
They're getting better at their V formation, albeit I do see some unevenness and a straggler. No, they're not migrating south. The Canada geese are year-round residents around here. They're just circling for a landing at the toxic superfund site Field of Geese in Bridgewater.
|Not quite Stonehenge|
The construction going on at the Bridgewater Train Station makes for some interesting shots as the sun attempts to rise. This is part of what the union workers with the inflatable rat were protesting. I'm not sure what is being built. At first, I thought a parking garage. Next, I thought just new lamp posts. Now this week, these have appeared. Hmm. A covered parking lot?
Many homes still sport holiday decorations, including the house at Richmond and East Front in Plainfield.
|My building at night|
I honestly don't recall why I was outside here at this hour. I must have taken trash out late. My windows are to the right of the brightly lit window on the second floor. Huh. Usually I take my trash out on the way out in the morning, but too many lights are on for that hour. I generally have no reason to be on that side of the parking lot. There's no entrance or exit there.
|Is it a bird? Is it a plane?|
It's a sea gull. Case closed.
|Icy walk, NJ Transit!|
As per the usual, NJ Transit didn't clear the snow/ice at the station. This winding walk is what's supposed to be the accessible (for wheelchairs, etc.) walk so folks can avoid using the stairs or elevator. Trust me, you probably don't want to use the elevator at the Plainfield Train Station after a cold winter night. This was Monday morning. It snowed Saturday. I used the stairs.
Hoo-rah. Now it's gone as are the bags over the parking meters. Those are for free parking over the holidays.
|More catnip, please|
Of course, practically every day is a holiday for a certain cat!