“It is the last straw that breaks the camel’s back.” Charles Dickens
I stopped at an Amish flower stand to check out the sunflowers I saw last week and an old woman on a bicycle rode up and said hello. I mentioned how big they got and she told me that she didn’t plant them, it was the birds.
When I asked her if any were flowering she told me there was one on the end of the row but something was wrong with it, it wasn’t perfect. I walked over with the curiosity of Schrödinger’s cat and wondered what she meant.
As soon as I saw it I knew that it was absolutely perfect! The leaves protecting the flower were growing at an odd angle but it was very healthy and probably happy to have someone care so much about it.
I took a few photos as the clouds burned off into bright sunshine, the kind of bright that makes color photos of flowers look washed out, so I knew I would end up converting this to black and white. I thanked the woman and told her she made my day.
“Do you think it will be OK?” she asked me before I left. I was a bit surprised at the question but I figured she was used to dealing with two headed calves and vegetables that grow to look like genitals, the Amish hate when that happens. I assured her the flower would be fine.
The Buddha said: “Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up because you will lose the ability to learn new things. Move forward with your life.” I didn’t tell her that because she was close to 80 and I’m sure she has life pretty much figured out by now.
“Life begins well. It begins enclosed, protected, all warm in the bosom of the house.” Gaston Bachelard
I stopped to photograph this Amish farmer getting his field ready for planting and it was such a tender moment that tears came to my eyes. It might have been the near freezing temperature and biting wind, but the scene reminded me of many things.
Time passing so quickly, the changing of the seasons, the beauty of spring and the hard work of these farmers. As the smell of horse manure rose into the air, I thought of the show Green Acres, and Oliver deciding that working with his hands was more important than working as a lawyer in the big city.
I would say that farm livin’ is the life for me, keep Manhattan just give me that countryside. But I don’t like getting muddy, or working in a field all day, or having obsessive photographers standing there taking my picture while I’m trying to do my job.
“In the mirror of your mind all kinds of pictures appear and disappear. Know that they are entirely your own creations, watch them silently come and go. Be alert, but not perturbed. You see the picture, but you are not the picture.” Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj
“Melting our attachment to self is the most powerful medication for bringing mental and emotional imbalances in check.” Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche
“The vehicle screeched away. A pair of black tire-tracks scorched the asphalt in its wake, as if the ground had sprouted its own set of horns.” The Wake Up, Angela Panayotopulos
“How do you let go of attachment to things? Don’t even try. It’s impossible. Attachment to things drops away by itself when you no longer seek to find yourself in them.” Eckhart Tolle
Note: this is mostly true for living room chairs but also applies to couches, especially if you have pets.
The Quiet Haven Motel is located near Lancaster County’s most popular sites and offers a peaceful, inviting atmosphere. Don’t let the gravestones scare you; I don’t think anyone has died there in a long time.
“You have to be what you are. Whatever you are, you gotta be it.” Johnny Cash