Monday, April 27, 2009

Digging In The Dirt

Well, we got about 90% of the plants and seeds in the ground at The Farm on Sunday. I need to offer a million thanks to Heinz, Jim and Noah (pictured here with me). They brought a willing effort and a ton of mulch that I will spread once I finish seeding maybe tomorrow afternoon. This is a group effort designed not only to produce some wonderful vegetables and flowers, but a chance to decompress and relax with good friends. I believe my son Daniel plans on having a vegetable stand in Reynolda Village to help supplement his lawn mowing income this summer - Ill keep you posted.

Yarddawg: please take note of the freshly planted Nicotiana at our feet.

***Update - Noah and I finished planting (still have some real estate left however) or I so I thought until I reached into my pocket while sitting with some friends last night to find a pack of seeds I intended to plant in the cutting garden. Well, we need to get more mulch anyway (about 60 bags), so I will have to dig a little more before I can claim complete installation of the Brookberry Garden 2009.***

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Goodbye Solo

I just saw this at the River Run Film Festival - you must go. Filmed here in Winston-Salem.

Clip from the movie -

Official trailer Click Here.

Release dates Click Here.

"On the lonely roads of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, two men forge an improbable friendship that will change both of their lives forever. Solo is a Senegalese cab driver working to provide a better life for his young family. William is a tough Southern good ol‘ boy with a lifetime of regrets. One man‘s American dream is just beginning, while the other‘s is quickly winding down. But despite their differences, both men soon realize they need each other more than either is willing to admit. Through this unlikely but unforgettable friendship, GOODBYE SOLO deftly explores the passing of a generation as well as the rapidly changing face of America."

Winner of the Venice Film Festival’s prestigious FIPRESCI International Critics Prize, ‘Goodbye Solo’ is the latest film from internationally-acclaimed filmmaker Ramin Bahrani (‘Chop Shop,’ ‘Man Push Cart’). 'Solo' has been hailed as “A force of nature!” by Roger Ebert. And The New York Times’ A.O. Scott says it has “an uncanny ability to enlarge your perception of the world.”

Friday, April 24, 2009

Lonesome Road

This is Highway 12 on the way to Cape Hatteras (looking north, Hatteras is south of where I am standing). Something really wonderful about being the only one on this road with huge sand dunes on either side. Sand blows whimsically across the asphalt and the roar of the ocean falls over top the seaward side. The smell of the salt reduces blood pressure and for a moment I, like the landscape, could care less that the market and economy are in bad shape. I envy the fact that when I left this place, it still had no clue about our condition.

Click Here:
Maybe these will inspire you to head down to the outer banks of NC.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Reynolda Gardens

I mentioned in my previous post about Reynolda Village, that I would take some pictures*** in the Gardens. If you are looking for a good place to decompress, this is it.

My Garden
By Emily Dickinson

New feet within my garden go,

New fingers stir the sod;

A troubadour upon the elm

Betrays the solitude.

New children play upon the green,

New weary sleep below;

And still the pensive spring returns,

And still the punctual snow!

***I need to mention that I had to get special permission to take these and was only able to acquire it due to the fact that I am a tenant and I was taking pictures to be used in an ad - this opportunity is not open to everyone, although ignored by some, photography in the gardens is generally prohibited for commercial use***.

If you do decide to visit, please stop by my wife's new shop Karen Gray Design.

Friday, April 17, 2009

We're Gonna Need a Bigger Boat....

Well, maybe not. However, I suspect that if Robert Shaw, Roy Scheider and Richard Dreyfuss had one of these bad boys, I think the movie would have ended a little sooner and with everyone giving high fives making the announcement that they were headed to Disney Land.....

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Through The Woods To Grandmother's House? Where Does It Take You?

It's been a bit, but I wanted to continue with my "Paths and Roads" series. I am always curious to see what may be around the next bend. Better yet, I am more interested in what peoples' imaginations tell them is around the next bend, or maybe it reminds you of some place. Like life, the expectation of what is to come is always more fantastic than what is actually found. Sometimes I'd rather live with the expectation, other times I am glad that it was not realized.

Link to older posts on "Roads".

Sunday, April 12, 2009

OBX = Roanoke, Bodie, Hatteras, Ocracoke & Cedar Islands in 24 hours

As promised in my blog back in February, I did make it to the coast, only not in winter. Daniel and I took off Friday evening, spent the night in Rocky Mount and hit Roanoke Island by about 9:45 AM on Saturday. We took tons of pictures, explored light houses, ate at local haunts (I recommend the Froggy Dog Cafe in Avon, NC for lunch - I had the Froggy's revenge). We rode the ferries from Hatteras to Ocracoke and then to Cedar Island. Lots of good shots for the "Where does this lead you" series and just some good landscapes of the dunes and whatnot. I really think everyone should take a weekend and make this drive, you will not be disappointed. It was wonderful to see so many large sections of the coast undeveloped. I expect much of the thanks for that belongs to the North Carolina Coastal Federation. Anyway, I am planning on making the trip again, but scheduling in about four days so we may take our time.

Click here to see the slide show of all my pictures from the coast set to music.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

To Your Health, Again

Related to my previous post on Algaen. And yes, I am the stiff in the suit.

To The Lake Once More

I know all of you have read or seen "Charlotte's Web" or "Stuart Little" by E.B. White. However, if you have not, you must read his collection of essays. "To The Lake Once More"(click to read it) is possibly my favorite. He, like me, seems to live in nostalgia. I hope to create the same kind of memories for my children.

The pictures are of Lake Katherine, mentioned below in the post about Reynolda Village. It was man made almost 100 years ago and was allowed to fill in due to the high cost of maintenance and to allow for wetland restoration. If you look closely in the old photo you can see the boathouse on the right and of course the condition of both as of this last Saturday.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Reynolda Village

As most of you know by now, not only do I maintain an office in Reynolda Village, but my wife also now has a small boutique there as well. I finally got the chance to wander around a take some pictures today. It really becomes a whole new place when you look at it from all points. I could have spent and probably will spend several more hours taking additional pictures. I will also then include the grounds up around Reynolda House and Gardens. This place is a real treasure. While walking around, there were young families parked on blankets, students either sunning themselves or studying and the occasional solo napper all laid out on the hill by Lake Katherine (or what's left of it). This is a true community asset and I consider myself lucky to show up there each day for work. Incidentally, that's my son Daniel who got to spend all afternoon running around without a care with the other children in the Village.

More pictures of the Village.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Bethania, NC Settled 1759

Do you remember my post "Local History Mystery" about Nathaniel and Aggee Brooks Lash? Well the answer is that the Lash family settled in Bethania from Berks County Pennsylvania. Thanks to Bev H. for solving the mystery and inviting me to be part of her research into Bethania. Below is a link to a slide show of some of my pictures, set to music, from that day. You will have to wait until Bev's book comes out to get the details on the where, what and who. What I will say is that the tobacco barn is on what was the old Conrad plantation as are the collapsing slave quarters. This was a moving experience and I am really looking forward to the book.

Bethania slide show (music by The Boys Choir of Harlem)