Yet another week in the (seemingly never-ending) countdown to Staycation for me. Here's some random notes on the week:
- I woke up very early one morning this past week smelling smoke -- like house-burning smoke -- in my apartment. That was one of the first nights that I had turned off the air conditioning and threw the windows wide open as the heat had lessened.
- It turns out that two homes were destroyed and one damaged in a huge three alarm fire with 80 firefighters responding right on the street in back of my building. The fire was actually across the street from the Mexican Polka live band people. I'm so running on empty these days that I slept through all the hoopla.
- (Side note: The Mexican Polka live band people were at it until nearly midnight last night. Grr.)
- In the urban jungle news arena: There I was, resting on the ledge by the Plainfield Police Annex waiting for the bus home from the train last night and this creepy drunk non-English speaking dude plopped down practically on top of me. "Ola!" I reacted with exaggerated shoo hand motions and "Go away! Shoo!" I already had plans to knock him to the ground if he didn't go away -- I'm larger and sober, he's drunk. I scared him. He stumbled away. A cop who had been sitting at the traffic light watching called out to me, "Nicely played!"
- I find it very depressing that I'm old enough to join the Plainfield Senior Center which I don't have time in my life to join because I'm not old enough (or financially set) to retire.
- Not that I'd really want to join. I'd probably rather do something like join a whitewater rafting club than do many of the activities they have going on for seniors.
- In more urban jungle news: One early evening on the 59 bus, a guy tried to board with one of those personal shopping carts well overloaded with scrap metal (he probably stole). The bus driver wouldn't let him board and started screaming, "No! No! NO!" -- thus scaring an innocent dude who was paying his fare. I was looking at the scrap metal pieces haphazardly piled atop the cart and thinking it would be dangerous. I was glad the bus driver told him no and drove off forcing the guy to get his foot out of the bus door.
- We're expected another heat wave this week.
|I love the flowers|
But I'll love autumn temperatures a lot more! Of course, autumn has its own flowers, plus glorious fall foliage.
|Fireworks at the TD Ball Park|
On Monday night, just as the 10pm train was coming in, they started the after game fireworks in Bridgewater.
|East Second Street fire scene|
Despite the local newspapers saying the fire was at 240 East Second Street, it was not. It apparently started in the attic of 640 and spread to 642. Both of those homes seem totally destroyed, with the roofs caving in on them. 644 has its siding all melted, but the building didn't catch on fire. No one was hurt. More of the fire scene photos after the jump ...
|News 12 satellite truck|
Parked on Berckman Street with cables leading to a camera around the corner on East Second Street.
|News 12 vehicle|
News 12 New Jersey, around the clock. Or, so they say. At the scene of the East Second Street fire.
|News 12 camera|
Hey, they left it there unguarded. I had to shoot it! A few minutes later, the News 12 guy with his huge camera came along. We talked cameras for a bit. It was decided that while his was several thousand dollars more, mine is easier to carry. I should note that, if I decide to take video, my camera does film in HD.
|Open for traffic|
They opened the street just before I came along. The sign with the police tape is where I catch the 59 bus to the train, work and bus schedule willing. The light yellow house there (644) has its siding facing towards the burned houses all melted, but it doesn't look like any other damage to it.
|The satellite dish remained up!|
Even though the roof is tumbling down.
Again, from Monday night.
|Monday night fireworks continued|
|Even the tiny sparrow is a wonder of nature|
|Hiding in the grass|
But I see him.
|Little sparrow likes his grass|
Not only does he hide in the grass, he eats the grass, too!
|Under the rails|
The rail bridge over Watchung Avenue in Plainfield still needs its end pieces. I'm dreading a shut-down again. They had the Park Avenue overpass closed for months, re-opened it and shut down Watchung Avenue. Then, when Watchung opened, they shut down Park Avenue. That's how it stands right now.
One day this week, the Keyboard Man returned to the Plainfield Train Station. I like the atmosphere he creates -- rather mellow and soothing. Unfortunately, the bums who hang out around the train station 24/7 laying about on the grounds, drinking alcohol with paper bags covering the bottles or cans, using the power outlets on the platform to charge cell phones, taking up the benches, shelters and even the stairs ... that's horrible. I often see the police on the East Fourth Street side of the train station, but rarely on the North Avenue side.
Most springs or summers, I find something new and different at the woody area near the Bridgewater Train Station. One extremely rainy spring a few years back, it was the Spring of the Garden Snails. I haven't seen not a one since that spring. I found this vacant weather-worn shell among rocks by the overpass. Past years included The Spring of the Snakes -- that was spring 2014 when a birthing den of garter snakes was right at the train station. There was the Summer of the Cicada Killer Wasps, too. This year has been a bit of a nothing new summer, with few bugs even.
|The hibiscus continue to do their thing|
|Inside the bloom|
|Older Rolls Royce|
Yep, parked right in my 'hood. No, not a resident's car. It was there for wedding ceremony participants along with a very long stretch limo.
"Red sky at night, sailor's delight." I took this shot from the Bridgewater Train Station with the parking lot solar panels and a bit of the back of the scoreboard from the TD Ball Park in the background.
As seen on East Front Street in Plainfield.
|A fresh new hibiscus bloom|
|Vincent, once again, rolling in catnip|
I don't know what to do about that silly cat!