Still water

15th June 2022

What is it about reflections that makes them so compelling?

Hudson River in Stillwater, NY

Is it the reflected image?

Or the fact that the water is still?

For once, Grant was able to pull off the road .

He was keen for me to photograph the bridge struts.

And I am always attracted to images of trains disappearing in the distance.

A reflection thrown in, so much the better.

When I was young, a journey by train always had appeal.

Especially if it was an overnight journey with a bunk.

The sound of trains in the distance, at night, provokes a deep nostalgia for a time long gone.


As we stopped to make a turn the other day, Grant swatted his neck and cast his hand toward me.

“Good move!” said I, surveying the rather large insect that now sat on my left shoe.

Having had previous unpleasant encounters with such creatures, I was not inclined to re-new the acquaintance.

So I carefully removed the shoe and threw it out my window.

The horsefly, not the shoe.

Dastardly beasts. They can inflict painful bites.

Later I realised that I do not actually dislike all flies.

Night is very dark here and as the moon was more or less obscured when I happened to glance out late yesterday, I witnessed a brief yearly event. I have no hope of communicating the delight, except to say that it is as magical as it is momentary.

In some parts of the world, these events are phenomenal and I cannot claim anything so grand.

But in their own small way, the tiny explosions of light emitted by amorous fireflies beyond my window is very special. Something that makes me feel good.

Such simple pleasure.

Oh, alright, fireflies aren’t in fact flies at all. (So why give them the name?) They are classed as beetles.

And I have scanned through every other kind of fly and they are all pretty undesirable, though there is apparently a so-called “non-biting midge” I could perhaps agree not to hate.

(Don’t expect me to be able to tell the difference. Come near me and you’ll get smacked.)

There are also dragonflies and butterflies and moths.

It’s hard to believe they have such unappealing relatives.

We had turned in front of this sad house, one of so very many that are abandoned to be reclaimed by Nature.

How many stories took place within?

What befell the owners?

What vestiges of a family are left?

Abandoned homes always call to me. I want to open the front door and walk inside, see what I can feel.

Maybe not after dark.

Some places are just plain creepy.

Something else that appeals to me:

Roads, especially dirt roads that disappear over the horizon.

Where do they go?

Who is at the other end?

And that other road, the one not taken…

Where did it lead and how would life be different if I had gone that way?

It’s something we probably all wonder sometimes.

Though I am glad I do not have to rewind my journey and face the crossroads once again.

The good thing about my old age is that I have finally learned acceptance.

It is very calming.

Like still water.

9 thoughts on “Still water

  1. I share your feelings about departing trains and empty houses. You did not say if anyone owns them?
    My laptop hates the heatwave we have here and refuse to cooperate, perhaps tomorrow’s rain will change its mood.
    I love your musings, keep musing, Carolyn!


  2. Yes, I love reflections on the water … though I struggle to get that type of photo’s … you definitely not! Haha, don’t we all have those unappealing relatives 😉 … I have seen fireflies only a couple of times in the wild and they are quite astoninshing! And I’m a huge fan of dirt roads – they defintely take you to unexpected places (that sometimes turns out to be lovely gems).
    Hmm, “calm like still water” … that’s great to have such a feeling 💌.

  3. Since living in the coutryside, the worst bites I have received are from Horseflies. They hurt when they bit, and the reaction to their bites has caused huge swellings arounf the site. A few years ago, a golf-ball sized bite on my knee made it hard for me to walk for two days. I hate the things!
    (And a bite from a wolf-spider that I didn’t even see bite me caused my hand to swell up like a balloon! I still have the two small scars from where the fangs went into the back of my hand.)
    Best wishes, Pete.

      1. I didn’t even see it. I dropped my stick, reached down to pick it up from some undergrowth, and felt the pain. Someone else looked at the two holes, and told me it was a wolf spider bite. I ended up visiting my doctor because of the swelling, but they said it would be okay and gave me no treatment.

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