Sunday, March 01, 2015

Off Topic: That Was the Week It Was - March 1, 2015

Good morning! It's Sunday. You know what that means -- it's time for my weekly off television topic reflection on the week gone by in both words and photos I've taken along the way.

Once again this week, the photos are a bit lacking. It's been way too cold to play with the various features of the new camera. They've determined it to be the third coldest February on record here. Only 1934 and 1895 were colder. But, of course, they didn't measure windchill temperatures back then. It probably hasn't been much colder than where I spent a good part of my youth in Saratoga County, New York. But I was a kid then. Cold doesn't matter as much to a child! Nor does a child have a fancy-schmancy new camera to explore!

We're due more snice (snow/ice) later today and during the overnight hours. We haven't had the snowfall amounts of Massachusetts. But, for some reason, every time it snows, we come out of the deep freeze momentarily and get ice, then return to the deep freeze. 

Unfortunately, because the new camera is too big to fit in my pocket and I didn't take it with me for a brief walk to PetSmart (someone demanded I not come home without cat treats) one evening at my workplace, I missed what probably was a shot of my lifetime.

I kept hearing ooo-oooo noises and footsteps behind me. I thought a child was imitating an owl. I slowed to a stop and the maker of the footsteps walked by. It was an older woman! I heard ooo-oooo again. I looked up. There was a HUGE OWL atop the nearby parking lot lamp! It wasn't a snowy white owl -- it was brown or grey, hard to tell in the dark. But it was HUGE! I told him to stay there and ran back to work for my camera. When I returned, he was gone. ARGH! I haven't seen an owl in person since childhood and never one that big.

Other than that, I don't have much to report from this end. I'm still not 100% health-wise and realize I probably will never be. I still really, really, really want to retire and do something I enjoy. Yet I don't dare as I can't cut my income. Gah. Childhood was a lot easier.

Onto the photos for the week --

 A very cold Big Top

You would think that, after last year's horrible winter, the Big Apple Circus might think of scheduling its annual appearance in Bridgewater, New Jersey, a few weeks later. Nope. There they are! I would imagine there's some kind of heat in the tents. But going there in this frigid weather to watch a dog and pony show would be amongst the last things on my list of fun stuff to do.

Like ships passing in the night

It's trains passing in the day! I took this shot just east of the Plainfield Train Station. While the locomotives are both facing the same way, the locomotive on the right is pushing the train while the one with the headlights is pulling the train.

The one coming my way (headlights) is a newer dual duty locomotive -- both diesel for my train line and has an extendable doohickey to attach to overhead wires, thus being powered by electricity to go into NYC. Diesel trains aren't allowed in the tunnels. (We're all gonna DIE!) Most of the trains on my line stop at Newark Penn Station and passengers have to transfer to get into Manhattan. Now they're up to several trains daily directly in and out of the city or, as they say, one seat rides.


Plainfield Train Station at night

I'm thankful that the Plainfield Train Station is accessible. I do wish the street people would stop using the elevator as a drug den or urinal, though. Sigh.

It can stop, really.

I took this shot last Sunday when I went down to the front of the building early to get my Sunday newspaper. I have to get it early or someone will steal it. If stolen (or not delivered), I have yet to actually receive a redelivery. I end up with pennies taken off my monthly bill when I only get the paper once a week. I only get it on Sundays so that I can access the online version without paying per article. But, am I wrong in thinking that if I'm missing one paper out of four in a month, I should be credited for 25% of the bill?

Playing with the zoom

It's been way too cold to really explore the new camera much, but I have played with the zoom. I took this shot of the Courier-News now apartment building, ex-Frost Building according to its revealed original marque, from the corner of North Avenue and Gavett Place. That's a block away. I can zoom more and practically look in the windows. But I didn't want to know.

I see dead people

Eek, I also see my reflection in the window! People really need to stop sleeping on NJ Transit trains near me.

North Avenue, Plainfield

They've rehabbed some of these buildings in this Historic District quite nicely. I've seen photos of some of the new apartments online and they are attractive with way cool kitchens. That said, they're overpriced for the area. I don't know who would be renting there. The train station approach (cue: frequent train horns and noise) is right in back of them. A bar is on that block with its bar fights and brouhahas. Drugs at night in that 'hood are rampant and most of the night has ne'er-do-wells taking over the streets.

Where I live, I'm about seven blocks either way to either of the two train stations in Plainfield (Plainfield and Netherwood). But I'm actually only three blocks from the tracks. In nice weather with the windows open, I can hear the train whistle in the distance. That's a pleasant sound. I wouldn't want it fifty feet from my windows, though.

Huh? Whazzat?

I have no clue what this thing is on the eastbound track near the Plainfield Train Station. Whatever it is, it put the trains to one-tracking. I've seen the ice/snow clearing thing and it's not that. I'm not sure it's related, but it does look like they're starting work to replace the two rail overpasses on either side of the station. That's some really frozen ground they're digging!

Another zoom test

I took this shot from the end of the platform at the Plainfield Train Station by Watchung Avenue, looking up East Third Street. That stop sign in the middle is at least three blocks away, possibly four blocks. Why are some people walking in the street? Because of large ice patches on cleared sidewalks and some sidewalks never cleared at all!

Look! It's SNICE!

A whole big stack o' snice! That's my word for what we've had this winter -- a combination of snow and ice. Children can't even play in it; they'd probably cut themselves. You can't build a good snowman, nor can you have a snowball fight. You can only try to maneuver over piles of it everywhere.

Vincent in his chair

Vincent in his chair by mine nearby the computer. He likes to be near me. Sometimes he's not near me, realizes he's not near me and comes running in a panic to be near me. What a silly kitty!


lynn1 said...

Jackie, even with the bad weather you have made great photos. The Plainfield train station at night is a work of art.

Jackie said...

Thank you, Lynn.

Palmaltas said...

Jackie, I would have to use the elevator at the Plainfield Train Station despite the horrible people that "use" it. There is no way I could go up or down those icy stairs.

Jackie said...

If I come home from work late at night (which I've been doing lately), I do take it down to the tunnel so I can get to the taxi stand on the other side. Earlier in the evenings, I just walk down to the corner on the same side as my train arrives and catch the bus which gets me a five-minute walk from home. If spring ever comes, I'll walk more.

Becky said...

I have really missed coming to see the pictures, but I can only be on the computer a short before my new camper Headache lets me know they are still with me.

I saw in the paper where TJMaxx, Marshall and Home Good employees were receiving a pay raise.

We finally got a TFMaxx and Homegood store here but I have only had one trip there and that was to geta gift certificate for our daughter for Christmas.

Nickelpeed said...

I love your pictures,always great. Poor owl, must have been hungry or just passing by. They do get big.

Well, will miss TAR Friday. Going to go see Dinosaur Quest. Can't wait. So, that will be 3 of these I'll miss. :-( I have to work next Wednesday Wednesday, too. Missing 2. Survivors will be a deep withdrawal! LOL. Glad I have a DVR!

Nickelpeed said...

I love your pictures,always great. Poor owl, must have been hungry or just passing by. They do get big.

Well, will miss TAR Friday. Going to go see Dinosaur Quest. Can't wait. So, that will be 3 of these I'll miss. :-( I have to work next Wednesday Wednesday, too. Missing 2. Survivors will be a deep withdrawal! LOL. Glad I have a DVR!

Rochelle said...

pix look great Jackie. You just get better and better. Since you've entered and did well in several contests - is the next step a show? Even if in several local coffee houses?

Jackie said...

Thank you, Rochelle. I did have an exhibit all summer at the local library. I'm hoping to expand more down the road.