Around The Bend

Hello Friends! Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “The Bend 113020bw” and is available for purchase by clicking the thumbnail and reaching out to me on the contact page.

The low rumble of a distant train echoes across the river as the unseen train makes its way upstream. After a lifetime of listening to the tracks you learn how to tell the difference between a train load of coal and an empty train. This one is empty. I suspect it’s on its way to be filled. The horn blares out a mournful tone at the crossing. I can’t help but let out a silent howl of my own as she passes on hidden by the wilderness around us.

We don’t always see what’s on the other side of the bend in the tracks but that doesn’t mean it’s completely alien to us. Last night I had some thoughts about peace and fear. Fear of the unknown is probably the most common. What’s waiting around the next bend? Forget the exact quote or who said it but the unknown is always expected to be more grandiose than it actually is. The monster in the closet typically turns out to be a mouse that’s trying to find its way out. The lottery ticket is most likely a worthless piece of paper. And the “New Normal” in reality is a temporary thing that’s not normal at all. It just fills the gap between changes. How can anything that changes so regularly be regarded as “normal”? I never really understood that. But I digress. The point of course is that it’s when we can’t see what’s on the other side that we stop focusing on our peace and start to concentrate on fear. Fear is a hungry beast and when we give it attention it consumes everything. That’s not to say that we shouldn’t have any concerns about the future but only that we shouldn’t dwell on the negative. If we acknowledge the truth it should also include the fact that we are overcomers! We have that peace of mind that allows us to plan effectively. And if we can see how to get beyond the bends of our lives we really have little to fear. God is a way maker. He’ll handle what we can’t.

Good night friends and be blessed throughout your days.

Announcement:

I am adding additional social media to my network. Eventually, I’ll be leaving Facebook behind for a multitude of reasons. Even though the Lloyd’s Lens Photography page is strictly non-political I have been restricted from interacting with followers with no explanation for why. But it’s not just that. For years now Facebook has throttled content providers in general. They encourage us to grow our audience and then want to sell us back the access to them. In addition, they collect and sell the data from our interaction. So Facebook has become an entanglement of thorns. In response I have created the Lloyd’s Lens Photography Discussion Group on MeWe. We can still interact directly on the blog but starting today I’ll be looking for more platforms that respect the privacy of my followers and don’t limit who gets to see the post.

I want you to join my group on MeWe: https://mewe.com/join/lloydslensphotographydiscussiongroup

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!

To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simply use the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251

Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer

Thank you again for your support of my page!

The Thorns

Hello Friends! Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “The Thorns 11221” and is available for purchase by clicking the thumbnail and reaching out to me on the contact page.

As I approached the old barn to photograph the rusted hinge and weathered gray wood I’m given one of those “gifts” from nature that I don’t much like to receive. A thorn in the flesh. But it’s okay. I’ve fought this battle many times in my life. I know almost all of the tricks to overcome the trial. I first acknowledge the pain. One the first lessons of adulthood is that uncomfortable doesn’t kill. Don’t recoil from the pain. Accept it. If you try to pull away the Thorns will only rip your skin and cause more pain. The cane that bears the thorns is long dead and brittle. It’s a simple thing to reach down and break off the parts that are not embedded in my skin and clothes. Carefully reach down and lift the remaining branch opposite of the direction it went in. There will be more pain but not as much as going in. I took the photos and headed back to the road. But as did so that thorny branch sought it’s revenge by tangling itself in my pants and trying to make me fall.

It’s an unfortunate fact that some of life’s situations are in themselves thorn patches. We’re drawn in by the idea of a reward such as the perfect rustic image or perhaps it’s hope of gaining approval from others. Whatever it is it’s the idea of the rewards that distracts us from the surrounding hazards and before we know it we’re caught. Most of the time we panic and struggle but the struggle only leads to a greater entanglement. We have to stop and break off the excess material. We have to remove the catches that have attached themselves and do so knowing that it’s going to be uncomfortable. And as we leave tangling thorns we have to be careful not become tangled again.

God, guide my steps but do so knowing that I’m human and as such I’ll most likely make a wrong step. And when I make the wrong step give me the grace to get free. And as I leave those circumstances behind pick me up if I fall.

Good night friends and be blessed throughout your days.

Announcement:

I am adding additional social media to my network. Eventually, I’ll be leaving Facebook behind for a multitude of reasons. Even though the Lloyd’s Lens Photography page is strictly non-political I have been restricted from interacting with followers with no explanation for why. But it’s not just that. For years now Facebook has throttled content providers in general. They encourage us to grow our audience and then want to sell us back the access to them. In addition, they collect and sell the data from our interaction. So Facebook has become an entanglement of thorns. In response I have created the Lloyd’s Lens Photography Discussion Group on MeWe. We can still interact directly on the blog but starting today I’ll be looking for more platforms that respect the privacy of my followers and don’t limit who gets to see the post.

I want you to join my group on MeWe: https://mewe.com/join/lloydslensphotographydiscussiongroup

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!

To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simply use the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251

Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer

Thank you again for your support of my page!

A Few Minutes Of Solitude

Hello Friends! Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “Solitude 100820bw” and is available for purchase by clicking the thumbnail and reaching out to me on the contact page.

I stand on the little bridge that crosses Peter’s Creek looking in the direction of the falls downstream. The warm autumn sun bathed landscape as the gentle breeze flowed over the mountains connecting all things. Each sound from the surrounding forest told it’s own story. A redtailed hawk cries out as it finds its strength in the wind. Small fish leap from the water and land with a tiny plop on the surface. The catbird just beyond the trees rings out its ever changing melody as the first of leaves to fall provide a rhythm for his tune. Gazing into the surface of the water I read the ripples eminate from the stones that peirce the surface. Their gentle influences mellow out into a uniform pattern that holds my attention. The breeze shifts again and delivers the scent of hay drying in a nearby field. It lasts only for a moment. The voices of nature are the whispers of God speaking peace to the troubled soul. A few moments of solitude are all it takes if you choose to receive his words.

Good night friends and be blessed throughout your days.

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!

To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251

Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer

Thank you again for your support of my page!

The Forgotten Tomorrow

Hello Friends! Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “The Forgotten Tomorrow 122920bw” and is available for purchase by clicking the thumbnail and reaching out to me on the contact page.

If I close my eyes and listen with my inner ear I can still hear the voices. The voices of people calling out orders, conversations at break time and the preshift prayer for safety. When your job is to dig deep or run the big machines on a highwall you tend to be a little more conscious of mortality. A few weeks ago I told you about my one and only day working on a strip mine and it happened just a little ways “down yonder” from where I took this photo. At the time I thought that there would never be an end to it. I helped as hired muscle but after that the real miners came behind me and pulled light from darkness. The coal that they harvested went to power plants and steel mills. It’s very possible that some of it would have made it from West Virginia to California. But that seems like a lifetime ago now. The voices are only echoes in the cosmetic moment we call time and the mountain has a way of reclaiming what’s her’s.

Image Titled “The Forgotten Tomorrow 122920a”. All photos found on my website are my original work and are available for purchase by clicking the thumbnail and reaching out to me on the contact page.

The ground heaves and throws and the grass spreads across the landscape to bind steel. The trees come next to sure up those bindings with roots that bend, break and swallow iron and steel. Heavy beams are slowly pushed aside like children’s toys. In God’s creation that which is idle is cast aside to make room for renewal.

Image Titled “The Forgotten Tomorrow 122920b”.

It’s given to mankind to subdue the land but to land its own charge is to be wild. Without consistent effort all that is left is a mystery for some future archeological explorer to find the bands of steel and marvel for the world that was. And for Chandra, here are your trees growing in the railway that you asked to see. 🙂

Good night friends and be blessed throughout your days.

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!

To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251

Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer

Thank you again for your support of my page!

Forage Friday #88 Privet – Toxic

Hello Friends! Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “Privet Berries 113020” and is available for purchase by clicking the thumbnail and reaching out to me on the contact page.

Please remember that Forage Friday is presented as trivia and not to be mistaken for medical advice. In addition, Privet is a toxic plant that in a survival situation could produce symptoms that are counterproductive to survival.

Folk tales are full of forbidden fruit archetypes. The poison apple is a classic. And although these cautionary tales have a symbolic reference to morality the dangers of a fruit that looks yummy but could wind up costing a unwise traveler their life is very real. Privet is just such a plant. In several of plant forums I belong to there’s always a novice that posts a picture of beautiful berries that are available at a time of year when there’s not much to forage on. Of course those of us have learned about Privet are quick to point out that it is a toxic plant and sometimes that warning is given with exuberance that can come off as being harsh. I like to believe that’s only because they care and are frightened for the poster. It’s nothing to be embarrassed about. We’re all a novice in some areas. According to Wikipedia, Privet is a mild toxin under normal circumstances. Symptoms include abdominal pain, nausea and vomiting and one online source advises to seek medical attention if more than 5 berries are consumed. They go on to warn that for some people just contact with the leaves and berries can cause rash and that smelling the flowers causes respiratory distress. Hence the extra caution in tonight’s disclaimer. I presume that the medical professionals would treat the poison with pumping the stomach and activated charcoal. Because the modern world has such wonderful equipment and training it’s likely that the victim would survive. But a lot of people are exploring the world of foraging in relation to wilderness survival. Food is actually the lowest priority in a sudden survival situation. The first priority being shelter, then fire, then water and food is last. The higher priorities will usually require a bit of effort. A person suffering from the symptoms of Privet poisoning will not be as capable of doing the physical work needed to build shelter and gather firewood and diarrhea will cause dehydration making the need for water even more urgent.

Image Titled “Privet Berries 113020bw” and shows the color of the berries.

The confusion over the ediblilty of Privet Berries is understandable. In nature we see a lot of blue and purple berries that are edible. Our minds automatically associate those colors with things like grapes, blackberries, blueberries and elderberries. So naturally we see these colors and our reflexes are to expect the same pleasant experience.

Wikipedia and other sources also say that private is used in traditional Chinese medicine. The leaves and inner bark are used to treat diarrhea, ulcers chapped lips and sore throat. Skin problems are treated by using it to wash the area. But I also read that warning about how contact with the foliage causes a reaction.

In closing thoughts the two biggest things to remember are that it’s good to get a positive ID so never be afraid to ask before you try a new plant and remember that just because your instincts tell you that a plant looks good to eat doesn’t mean you’re instincts are right.

That’s it for the first Forage Friday post of 2021.

Good night friends and be blessed throughout your days.

Hey Friends! Just a quick reminder that Lloyds Lens Photography is available for portraits!

To book me simply reach out using the Contact Page and we’ll set a date. If you’re within a 50 mile radius of Summersville West Virginia all travel fees are waived.

If you would like to Follow me on Facebook the web address is

https://www.facebook.com/aviewfromthelens/

If you’re enjoying my blog and don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website.

https://lloydslensphotographyllc.com/

Have you checked out the Zazzle Store?

I’m now using Zazzle to fulfil orders. What this means for you is a secure way to place an order, discount codes & a broader product selection! Simplymessage me on Facebookoruse the contact form on my websiteand tell me which image you want and I’ll reply with a direct link to where you can place the order.

Clicking on the photo takes you tohttps://www.zazzle.com/lloydslensphotos?rf=238248269630914251

Lastly, all of the photos and writings are my original work unless otherwise specified and are not to be copied or reproduced without expressed written permission from the photographer

Thank you again for your support of my page!