The streets of Brooklyn were mostly empty. The few brave souls outdoors wore masks, scarves, or bandanas around their faces to keep virus at bay. A sign posted on a lamppost encouraged neighbors to stay connected in spite of the shelter-in-place order, now in its second month. And yet, the flowering trees still bloomed. Their message: your worldly illusions have been shattered, but deep within the earth, it’s business as usual.
Four years ago, Philadelphia beckoned. With its historic streets, ample museums, and plethora of restaurants, there was never any reason to be bored. What surprised me the most, though, was the vast geographic area the city took up (135 square miles, to be precise). Living in the northwest corner of the city, my husband Jeff and I often cruised a stretch of road called Lincoln Drive, which passed underneath a deeply forested area that reminded us of Jurassic Park. I […]
“I now realize that life held a divine purpose, for shoving me into places that were as changeable as the wind. In between the floundering of then and now, the eyes of fate were following me–watching, always watching with narrowing glances. Now, having given deep thought to life’s offerings, I realize that everything that happened should have happened.” -Gordon Parks (1912-2006), from “No Apologies” Pebble Pond, (2012)
Philadelphia’s Laurel Hill Cemetery is one of America’s most notable burial grounds. Founded in 1836, during a time when the only options for burial were in overcrowded churchyards, Laurel Hill was established as a bucolic alternative where the living could bury their dearly departed. In recent years, the cemetery was designated a “National Historic Landmark” — the first graveyard in the country to receive such a title. Many notable figures have been buried here, among them Civil War generals, Titanic […]
The Wissahickon Valley is a 1,400-acre park in the northwest corner of Philadelphia proper. Second to none when it comes to beautiful scenery all year round, the area is particularly breathtaking in autumn. No wonder it has inspired poets, writers, photographers, and painters for so many centuries. Nowadays, the park hosts mostly pedestrians, equestrians, hikers and bikers. (Few rollerbladers come here, however, since the vast majority of paths are unpaved.) Scattered alongside the wooded paths, ancient trees bear the markings […]
Can you find the hidden heart in this pic? A garden statue with remarkable character. Bike on! A little patriotism goes a long way. This kitty damn well sleeps where she pleases. An autumn’s day in Carpenter’s Woods. Victorian Tulpehocken. Victorian Tulpehocken (detail). How many faces of Jesus can you spot in this pic? Baby Girl blends in so well with the fallen leaves. Super puggle! Food art. Mural art. More mural art. Even more mural art.