Yosemite: the Cost of Keeping Up

I had planned to post a few images from last week’s quick Gulf Coast trip. So much for plans.

I upgraded to Yosemite. Chrome is broken. Safari is not living up to the hype of being faster and more of a real browser I’ve never found it to be, but I’m stuck with it for a while, and all thumbs.

iPhotos–also updated–does not like the old version of Java runtime and the new version is taking a half hour to download. So this image was not cheap.

I hope you appreciate the simple picture of leaves on our path that cost me 30 minutes of wait. So many more leaves are down now than when we left for Biloxi last Wednesday.

On the plus side, I have had the sense this past week away that I’d like to get back to writing something more substantial. The shorter days this time of year have traditionally been calendar prompts towards turning in, slowing down, and thinking more deeply now that lawn and garden are not our masters.

I’d started another book in October a couple of years ago. I plan to revisit that notion, so am not stagnant across my entire creative life, such as it is. And maybe the blog will rise with that tide.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. Thanks Rob, I need not to lose heart–or my voice just yet, especially as in many ways I feel I have finally found it–some years after my audience wandered off. You remember the community that blogging used to be.

    This is the first autumn since 2006 (with the publication of Slow Road Home) that I have NO speaking events. Usually this is a peak time, and my best months for book and note card sales. Not this year.

    The pipeline activism shifted me off my usual center, though putting me very much into a “research, teaching, learning” mode that felt quite comfortable and familiar. But it was a down time for the creative juices otherwise.

    Usually after a down time in past years, I have quickly and enthusiastically “reinvented” myself. There’s less and less of that rekindling now, maybe at last giving into the notion that an end comes to all good things.

    Perhaps I should just be still and quiet, collect pictures for me and tell stories to myself–and maybe occasionally to my grand kids and a special friend or two. My public persona may just fit into a less visible package as we go along. Maybe I’ll finally get around to doing more reading than writing.

    Or maybe, after all, there is another book in me!

  2. Remember that we are at a point in life where words like “easing off,” “stepping back” and “pacing” are entering the vocabulary. My bout last week with pneumonia has forced me to re-evaluate my 60-plus hour work weeks and look at the things key areas that both interest and drive me.

    On the other hand, changes in work habits aren’t that easy later in life. If you love your avocation, as both you and I do, the intensity is a driver in itself.

    I’d rather die doing what I want than leave this world with tasks undone.