A collection of distilled sarcastic wisdom, numerous photographs, discussions of books and stuff to learn and more stuff to think about from a retired economics professor turned blogger and photographer.
My daughter in law kindly volunteered to take me to the gardens at Thanksgiving Point yesterday. The tulips were about 10 days past their prime, but I found enough color to make the trip worthwhile. Workers are in the process of pulling the tulips to make way for the planting of thousands of annual flowers. We found some leaners, some stragglers, and quite a few survivors awaiting their demise. But I have never seen a tulip of any color or condition that I did not like. More tulip pictures to come.
People who know I go around the neighborhood taking photos of every flower that blooms often ask me, "What is your favorite flower?" My answer typically is, "The next one I discover." Every new flower I see is another revelation of the great gift of nature that we are given in the form of flowers. I always admired flowers, but I don't think I became passionately in love with them until I started taking thousands of photos of them and watching in wonder as they emerged on my editing screen.
Please don't wait until afternoon before you take my picture, because I will turn into a limp red dishrag only a few hours after I bloom. I love to show off, but the clock is ticking so get out your camera so you can remember my incredible transient beauty.
Every few months, as snow birds we either flee or fly north or flee or fly south. Every few months, we must change TV, phone, mail, subscriptions, newspapers, internet, etc., etc. Every few months we assume (mistakenly) that we have neatly taken care of everything and that everything will function smoothly. The phone will be working, the internet will function smoothly, the TV will come on, and we can sit in our recliner chairs and live the high life. We made two trips to the post office in St. George to fill out the forms and make sure that, for the first time in twelve years, we hoped, the mail would correctly be forwarded from Point A to Point B. We even received a printed form from the USPS detailing the correct mail adjustments and forwarding times and address.
Then we arrive in Salt Lake City. Go to the mailbox. No mail. Remove yellow stop mail card. Go to mailbox second day. Remove second stop mail card. No mail. By fourth day, we visit the loca l post office. Ignoring the instruction card and the official post office notices and directions, the local carrier had been very busy continuing to forward all of our mail to St. George. I hate to criticize the post office. These people work very hard. But after twelve years of making mistakes every six months in our mail delivery, they wouldn't have to work half as hard if they would read the forwarding notices and make the changes. Now the mail that was sent to St. George, forwarded to Salt Lake City, forwarded back to St. George, now being forwarded back once more to Salt Lake City, is starting to dribble in. Reminds me of the simple days when we had the same rural mail carrier in Penrose Wyoming for nearly three decades. He never missed a day or a letter, even though we knew the loveable local postmaster in Garland Wyoming carefully studied all of our postcards.
Long time blog followers know by heart Blood's Law of Modern Technology:
Nothing ever works
If it stops working no one can fix it
If you get it fixed, it will stop working again
Latest example is our garage door opener. For nine years, we endured the cheap peace of junk garage door opener installed by the contractor in our condo. It was noisy and slow and finally, one day, it ceased working altogether. We looked up garage door openers and a nice new one was installed for $450. Behold, it was quiet and smooth and we loved it. Then, upon returning from St. George for the summer months in Salt Lake City, the new and expensive garage door opener ceased working. Since we had been gone at least half of the past two years, it had only about a year of use, and not very much at that since we hardly ever go any where. Upon calling the installer, we found out what we already knew: the warranty on this inferior and expensive circuit board had expired a year ago and a new one would cost $130. Moral: Do not ever count on anything working right, or working very long, or that any0ne can fix it. What you can count on is continuing to pay for inferior products. By the way, the name of the company is Genie. One would think that Genie could make a garage door opener that would work longer than a few months and that it would provide a new one for free if its piece of junk embarrassed them. But that is not the way our "free" enterprise system works. The customer always gets stuck with the mistakes of the company.
I had only my heavy-duty telephoto lense when I went to the flower gardens at the Jordan River Temple in Salt Lake City last night. But you get the general idea. If you want to see what the Jordan River Temple looks like, go to search and look through my archives. I was anxious to get to the Temple gardens because I was fearful that the tulips were about to be pulled in favor of summer annuals. The Jordan River Temple flower gardens are likely the best of the temple flower gardens in the Salt Lake Valley other than Temple Square in downtown SL City and I was hoping I hadn't missed the last of the tulips.
Fortunately, I was in luck. Some of the tulips were past their prime, but the main tulip garden by the main east temple door was still intact. Many people attending the temple stopped to admire the lovely muted pinks, yellows, reds, oranges, and whites of the tulip garden. These people were all dressed up and I had on a Little America baseball cap, a green polo shirt, and was carrying a walking stick to prop me up while I photographed the garden. No one seemed to mind, and many were interested in the fact that I was capturing the tulips at their last minutes of survival.
But, alas, as we drove through the parking lots on the west of the temple, the fate of the tulip gardens was all too imminent Here were hundreds and hundreds of flats of annual flowers lined up along the side of the parking lot just waiting for the gardeners to pull the tulips and other spring flowers and send them to the compost bins. But thanks to the miracle of digital photography, I was able to capture the muted beauty of the last of the tulips and preserve them to help me remember them long after they are gone.
Here is just a small sample of the annual plants and flowers awaiting the demise of the tulips. Then, in a few more weeks, I will return and capture the beauty of the summer flowers as they provide feelings of peace and tranquility to all who see them. And for those who cannot visit the temple grounds, I will show many of them to you here.
I was fortunate at 6:00 a.m. to catch a few moments of morning glory from the sunrise over the Wasatch Mountains in the South Salt Lake Valley. We will miss the red cliffs and desert climate of St. George for a few months but the Wasatch Mountains provide a forever changing panorama of the wonders of the heavens. I greeted our wonderful paper carrier who faithfully delivers the Salt Lake Trib (a tad more liberal) and the Deseret News (a lot more conservative) to our doorstep. And now we are ready to start the day and try to find out, once again, why the Post Office couldn't get our address change right when we change our residences every few months. Have a nice day.
Another trip to the Salt Lake Valley along I-15 netted numerous more photos. All were taken through the windshield at a speed, my son assures me, only one mile per hour over the 80 mph speed limit in some sections of I-15. A few bugs (as in insect smashes) will show up in some of the photos. Here is the first photo. Others will follow