Jackie Link's Blog

- A blog for no good reason

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Grapes on a bike

It was really foggy when we started on our ride to Rodeo Beach this morning, but a big group of cyclists were getting ready to ride as we left The Presidio. They passed us on the bridge. Wish I'd thought to wear a costume!

Once we got on the other side of the ridge the sun came out. Had a terrific ride with Dianna and Nancy.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

New photos

These were both taken in low light and I could say a lot about how digital technology has made this possible (neither image has noise and neither has been worked in Photoshop except to reduce the files for the Web), but I'll spare you. I'm having fun.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Trying is trying

I sit in the living room in an easy chair reading my new-to-me used texts on converting color digital images into snappy black & whites, and then when I come to my office and actually work an image I completely forget everything I've read. I need to learn just one exercise/process from the books well, never mind the image, until I know what I've learned. Yeah. I'll get right on that. Ha.

Nothing I've read lately went into processing this wimpy self-portrait. And being in b&w doesn't hide anything or flatter me much, it was just more fun to do.

In other news: Hercules has disappeared for the winter, even though it is summery here in SF. Sibyl (she's the one in color above) is probably going to lay another egg soon, which means she isn't great company while she solicits for a mate. But the dear, dear Freds in their big aquarium are always happy to see me, hoping I will give them some turtle chow. They too slow down a bit in the winter, but having lights on timers means they don't know when the days are short - I think I will change the timer.

I look forward to the winter, thinking I will study and contemplate and sew and cook and do all those indoor things I don't do when I ride a bike, any bike. And I have been better about not running away for several weeks, but writing the blog is really about procrastination from something, like now.

Yesterday I actually vacuumed most of my tiny cottage, even under the bed!; maybe next week I'll mop and wax the kitchen and bathroom floors.

But tomorrow I'm riding to Redwood City to see Kit. The heck with all this work!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Riding the waterfront

There was no sign of the sun today, but in spite of the gloomy sky I took off riding around the waterfront after lunch. The crowds were thicker, there were many more hazards from passengers opening their car doors into the bike path and jumping out into traffic, but I knew it was Fleet Week and enjoyed the sight of people having a good time.

I was passing the Hyde Street Pier when some fighter jets started their show and I assumed they were the Blue Angels. I thought perhaps I'd become jaded, they were rather slow, too tame.

And then VA-ROOM! the real deal, the Blue Angels exploded overhead! They hit the right note to put goose flesh on your arms and tingles up your spine. Whooeee.

The first year they hit this town I went to see them with my mother. We were standing on the Marina Green when they flew straight at us, we could see into the jets and into the cockpit, they were that much right in front of us. That was also the year they buzzed the tall buildings in the financial district, causing serious panic.

They've been a lot tamer ever since.

I try to forget what they're designed to do. How much they cost. Etc.

The real show, though, was a flock of pelicans diving into Aquatic Park for their supper. Neither the noise nor the crowds deterred them in the least. My little camera couldn't catch the action. (This was taken in Santa Cruz.)

Right after this tight formation of Blue Angels went past, a flock of six pelicans flew by us in the same tight formation---right in front of this crowd on the end of a Ft. Mason pier, barely over our heads. Everyone applauded them.

Love the Angels, love the pelicans.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Man in the Purple Hat

I was taking a picture of this orchid display in the Conservatory of Flowers when this man walked into my frame. I couldn't believe his purple hat, but there it is.

(OK, so it's really lavender, but I like the sound of The Man in the Purple Hat better.)

Sunday, October 04, 2009

Best if Used by

I made a big pot of pinto beans today, and in my family we'd have fried potatoes, cornbread, wilted spinach and sliced tomatoes to go with the beans, and so I went into the pantry for cornbread fixin's. You can't see it well in this photo, but I wrote "4/11/04" on its lid with a marker to show when I opened the can (and probably not used since).

That got me pulling other things out and, sure enough, most expiration dates are many years old. I'll fill the garbage bin tomorrow with an unopened tin of Crisco and boxed soups and other odds & ends - they're even too old for a Food Bank donation.

You either have to cook things like this often, or not at all.

But five years since I needed baking powder? That's pathetic.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Homesick for San Francisco

Yes. I know I live here. I often tell people I'm a hopeless tourist in my own town, and it's true.

Last weekend I bought a used copy of Travelers' Tales - San Francisco at the big Friends' of the Library book sale in Ft. Mason. Instead of reading class assignments I'm indulging my love of The City (don't call it Frisco! - but I jest; I don't actually mind when yahoos stab me with that word) while a cold virus works its unforgiving way through my upper respiratory tract.

Reading about North Beach I'm remembering my days at the art school on Chestnut, sitting out on the balcony, listening to the soft, distant cable car bells and fog horns, not painting. Another time I'm sitting on the tracks on the still hard-working waterfront, drawing with pen and ink. . . .thought I was oh so bohemian in my black tights and Capezio shoes.

I have so many sweet memories in this town, right up to this week (I'd say today, but I haven't left the house since Tuesday). It's always interesting. Never boring. And maybe homesick is the wrong word, but a frequently felt sudden fear that it could be taken away (think The Big One) keeps me always aware of where I am in my city, awake to its beauties. Warts and all.