Thursday Thoughts – Sallow, a Keystone Species

The old sallow (salix) standing in our summer garden is slowly ageing – and decaying. They seldom reach 100 years, but this one is even older. These trees are very important for the biodiversity, as almost 200 species of butterflies are dependent on it for feeding their larvae. And, so are many other insects too, like bees and bumblebees – in spring they can find food there during the first harsh months of the new year. Salix trees are also home for birds, mushrooms, lichen and mosses.

When we arrived in Spring 2019, our old man was still in one piece, standing in a pink field of sea thrift – but in autumn the same year, the middle part of him had fallen down.

This year we had to take down another of the oldest and longest arms from the trunk as it would not have made it through the winter.

But, as you can see, he is still standing there…overlooking the sea. And there is a new little one shooting up from the trunk of his old master. We hope he too will be a survivor when the old man is gone.

Lens-Artists Challenge #169 – The Ordinary

As you get older, you want less from the world; you just want to experience it. Any barriers to feeling emotions get dismantled. And ordinary things become beautifully poetic. – Richard Linklater

Our theme this week is The Ordinary, hosted by I. J. Khanewala. There are many places, moments, things, etc. that we would say are ”ordinary”. But, we humans often use this word or concept differently. I find it interesting how easily ordinary things can become remarkable…In my examples, light is often the difference, and the combination of colours and an open mind. I guess many of us who photograph, write or paint – or are involved in similar activities, recognize the feeling and can easily appreciate the beauty of our ordinary surroundings.

Two days ago, we went to our summer house to close it down for the winter. It was an extremely foggy day, and I was walking Milo (our dog) back to continue packing. Unexpectedly, as from nowhere, the sun shone through the dull hedge on my right hand side, revealing the intense beauty of backlit leaves.
In my own garden, the mist and cold continued when we picked the last grapes, where some of them had ventured up on the roof. While climbing down with my basket full of grapes, I admired the red autumn vines clinging to the walls, windows and ladder.

Then, on my way up to the house again, my eyes followed the adventurous vine climbing along the laundry line. I believe I have one of the most intriguing and beautiful laundry lines in the neighbourhood… an ordinary Monday.

We hope you will join us this week for the interesting Photo Challenge #169: The Ordinary.  Please include a link to the original post from our guest host of Don’t Hold Your Breath, and use the Lens-Artists tag so we can all find you in the Reader.

A sincere thank you to all who responded to last week’s “Seen Better Days” challenge. It clearly shows that most photographers love to focus on the beauty lingering in old, worn or dilapidated places and things. Finally, we hope you’ll join us next week when Patti brings us challenge # 170. Until then, please stay safe and be kind.

Thursday Thoughts – Chasing Colours

Every day I am hoping for the colours to arrive… but it is raining, pouring, every day. This morning though, there was a pleasant fog and the occational glimpses of sun. Which made for a lovely walk with Milo!

– Still not many colours so far along the path.

But, I found a single tree that had noticed my wish!

Otherwise, nothing. All this rain and no frost – will keep everything green for a while.

Muted colours and the sun was gone again – but no wind, so the harmonious tone lasted. I will let you know when I find them all…the sun and the colours.

Lens Artists Challenge #168 – Seen Better Days

Tina’s challenge this week is – Seen Better Days. Old, worn and dilapidated …yes, but I’d like to think one of the reasons to why so many of us love these things, and even take photos of them, must be because ageing is unavoidable. Things around us have all seen better days, and so have many of us. We have to accept it and find the intrinsic, inner beauty in what remains of the former glory.

Because often we can find a different beauty now. Just like deep love grows from a stormy infatuation, other values can make things shine. Shapes and colours for example.

Or, like this dilapidated shed, softly dressed in a snowy winter gown.

But – sometimes everything appears to be just a sad story…

Sad, but not without beauty, is Kyrkö Mosse – a famous car graveyard some 200 kilometers from my home. Standing silently there in the forest, even I can feel them talking to me. Someone, somewhere, once found the car of his dreams, and now that car has found its final resting place here, in the middle of nature. (All toxic parts have been taken away from the cars.)

Well, what can I say…Thank you, Still Restless Jo, for giving me the idea to this post when she read this week’s title! Jo wrote: ”Things that have seen better days? Ha! Sounds like me,” Sorry my friends, but I just could not resist the coincidence! Because today happens to be my birthday, and here I am – seen in better days. The photo on the left was taken when I met the world’s oldest blogger, Dagny, in 2017. I had just turned 60 and Dagny was 106 years old. The last photo was taken for my teacher’s ID-card, and I had just turned 50. Those were the days, and life was easier then in so many ways.

Should I reach the same age as Dagny, ( who is now 109, going on 110 – and still blogging…) my qualified guess is I would never look as bright and alert as she does…and I would certainly not be blogging.

Thank you all for the beautiful Autumn colours for Amy’s challenge last week! You offered some really sparkling and fiery entries – no wonder so many of you declared Autumn as your favourite season!

We are looking forward to seeing your posts for this challenge, and please link to Tina’s beautiful original post and use the Lens-Artists tag. Next week we are delighted to welcome I J Khanewala of Don’t Hold Your Breath as our guest host. Until then, stay well and be kind.