Monday, October 31, 2011

Talking Rubbish In My World

A GRASSY FIELD littered with brightly hued leaves is expected this time of year ...

so is this cluster of ghostly white mushrooms buried amid the weeds.

But this trash of plastics, glass bottles and tin cans was a complete surprise when I came by a grassy nook recently to take in the serene scene below.

The picture perfect landscape with the Nicomekl River flowing by deserves more respect. Although I prefer not to engage in cynicism or talk rubbish, I'm afraid writer Mason Cooley might have been right when he said: “Human society sustains itself by transforming nature into garbage.”

To view more sights from around the globe visit Our World.

Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bridge To A Cloud

TRAVELING OVER THE ALEX FRASER BRIDGE involves driving alongside a gigantic web of steel ropes. The 1,525 foot structure opened in 1986 and was (at the time) the longest cable-stayed bridge in the world. It was named after a local BC politician who happened to have the same surname as early explorer Simon Fraser for whom the river beneath the bridge is named.

It sometimes seems as if you could soar to the clouds in an unending horizon when the sky is not gray. When going back and forth across the bridge from Surrey into areas such as New Westminster and Burnaby, there are typically thousands of cars scurrying like spiders on all six lanes ... three in one direction and three in the other. Recently, I was was able to enjoy a blue cloud-filled view while my husband kept his eyes firmly fixed on the road.

See more skies from around the globe at Skywatch.

Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Monday, October 24, 2011

Saying BOO To Halloween Horror

SO MUCH TRUE TERROR exists in our paradoxically dangerous and nurturing world that I have difficulty understanding the fascination people have for the macabre and with violence.

This is the season when horrific images abound. A company called Spirit Halloween that I visited with my husband recently set up shop in Langley, BC, selling costumes and images of torture, dismemberment and death.

Press a button and ghoulish characters perform dastardly deeds.

A few appear to be clowning around.

Perhaps we are trying to confront our fears and yell back, "Boo ... I refuse to be afraid of you!" As a culture we rarely acknowledge our own inevitable demise or barely speak about dying.

We deny our fate but an unpleasant truth is lurking.

We are not immortal. But if we are lucky ...

we will grow very old, have a good dental plan and come to a peaceful end.

As my mom used to tell me, the dead can do no harm ... and there are no ghosts, zombies or boogie men hiding under the bed.

But there are live monsters in our world.

Evil exists ...

and it isn't pretty.

We try to focus on the sweetness of life. Knowing the unimaginable can strike at any moment, we certainly don't want to dwell on it.

Many sights in the store made me squeamish. But a few made me smile.

My husband tried on some masks. He looked silly as actor Charlie Sheen ...

and more believable as President Obama. We didn't see a mask of Canadian Prime Minister Harper who frightens a lot of people with his policies.

Let's face it ... even I can look scary at times, especially in the morning.

Animals were also at their demonic best.

This kitty cat wasn't cute or cuddly. Although the theme was far from warm and fuzzy, I became slightly less repulsed. The painted plastic objects around me were no more than smoke and mirrors and well crafted illusions.

Desensitization occurs not only at Halloween but daily through computer games and the movies. Technology adds realism to fake horror, blurring fact and fiction. Newscasts are emboldened to show tragedy in the raw.

What effect all this has on impressionable young minds isn't clear. But we know that evil intent is not always recognizable. It doesn't always have an ugly face ... and it can be deceptively charming.

To view more sights from around the globe visit Our World.

Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Thursday, October 20, 2011

People Magnet At Kwomais Point Park

WHEN IT ISN'T RAINING sunsets blaze a little brighter during autumn at Kwomais Point Park in South Surrey, BC, where I often visit.

The area overlooking Boundary Bay is a compelling feature for people taking their evening stroll in the neighbourhood. A woman was there ahead of me with her camera trying to capture the magic of the rapidly changing hues.

Soon more people gathered to soak in the stunning scene.

But it is not just the showy sunsets that attract onlookers day after day.

Even in the mornings when the horizon is a blank slate and the sea is shrouded in mist, people are drawn like magnets to the edge of the park to ponder life and to marvel at existence.

See more skies from around the globe at Skywatch.

Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Monday, October 17, 2011

Scary Tricks & Treats In My World

BLUSHINGLY BRIGHT images in their last gasp, such as this Virgina creeper, fill the nooks and crannies of the places I explore in my world.

Birds chirp somewhat anxiously from within trees that soon will be bare. Although southwest BC has the mildest winters in Canada, some will be packing up and winging to warmer regions by the end of fall.

Chimes swing as breezes build, casting soulful melodies in the cooling air.

Puffs of pillowy clouds rarely hang in the sky now. Rain clouds and morning mist persist in saturating ...

the washed out flowers already dripping with too much moisture.

The watering hoses that failed to keep the grass green in summer will soon be rolled up and out of sight.

Backyard picnics will creep indoors.

The cat with a summer haircut will need its coat back for the coming chill.

There are walls of bright orange pumpkins at each new turn.

Spooky black cats, bats and witches appear around every corner amid pumpkin pie temptations and memories of hay rides on a farm.

Some reflect on Halloween's past as they unwrap their seasonal decorations and carve strange expressions into pudgy blank faces.

I remember trick or treating as a child when the pillow case full of goodies I collected was ripped from my hands by teenagers lurking in the shadows waiting to pounce. I cried mostly because I thought I should have hung on tighter or put up a fight. I went trick or treating twice that night.

As this mask of American television personality Charlie Sheen shows, Halloween traditions stemming from ancient times evolved into a harmless excuse for both children and adults to play dress up and become actors.

Real fears are associated with the season, however, especially after razor blades were found embedded in apples several years ago. As a result, children are warned not to accept fruit or sweets that are not fully packaged.

Statistics Canada says that in 2009 $331 million was spent on Halloween candy alone. On October 31st costumed children will knock on doors and treats will be handed out by the truck loads. Pretty princesses, wicked witches, little pirates and giddy goblins will appear on thousands of Canadian doorsteps.

There is usually one door in the neighborhood that will be a little scarier to knock on than most.

To view more sights from around the globe visit Our World.

Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms

Monday, October 10, 2011

Ends Of The Road

FALL AND A PICTORIAL DIARY of my world reminded me of endings this holiday weekend. This adorable dog wearing shoes is well cared for despite its owner having possibly reached the end of his road in finding a lucrative job. By the look of the load on his bike, he now earns a living by cashing in discarded bottles. Perhaps he is content with a pet and the simple life.

These forlorn shoes in the sky swung in the breeze as if worn by an invisible dancer. The high flung sneakers tossed onto a telephone wire might never again touch the ground or pound the pavement with their heels.

This railway disappearing beneath weeds and overgrown grasses will never again know the screech of wheels down its tracks ...

but people still stop as a sign of respect before crossing.

New roofs eventually replace the tattered and old ...

old trees become brittle with barely a branch to hold.

Crumbling leaves dissolve into dust and vanish down drains while some of us ...

escape into churches in search for an afterlife at the end of the road.

On this Thanksgiving Day in Canada, I am grateful for fresh starts that like spring, can be foreseen in the leafy debris of autumn. It brings to mind words by American author Louis L'Amour who said about endings: "There will come a time when you believe everything is finished. That will be the beginning."

To view more sights from around the globe visit Our World.

Copyright by Penelope Puddlisms