Posts Tagged With: Edinburgh Castle

Day 1703: Everything is going to be alright

Yesterday, we found out that everything is going to be alright at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art.

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Even though the weather was gloomy, most of  the beautiful river walkway to the museum was blocked off because of temporary damage due to rain, and I have a cold, I still believe that everything is going to be alright.  Do you?

Is everything alright in these other photos from Edinburgh?

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“Everything is going to be alright” reminds me of this alright song by Kenny Loggins.

Any comments you leave will be alright with me.

Alright thanks from Edinburgh to all who helped me create today’s alright post and, also, to you.  Alright!!!

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 390: What kind of wall (is there around you)?

Last week, somebody in therapy used a phrase I’ve heard many times:

I have a wall around me.

This person was referring to a self-protective barrier, between themselves and other people. And it made sense that the wall was there, because of past betrayals and inappropriate intrusions.

I like to reflect other people’s language back to them, because I think the words they use are very important. I also find that metaphors can help explore and uncover possibilities for change.

So I asked  questions about that wall:

What kind of wall is it?

What does it look like?

How much space is there between you and the wall?

How high up does it go?

What is it made of?

Does it change?

How does it feel to be inside the wall?

As we talked about the wall, we agreed a wall could have good sides: Walls can protect and give somebody a safe place to be.

I’m reminded of the saying:

Good fences make good neighbors.

… which is defined by The Free Dictionary like so:

It is easier to be friendly with your neighbor if neither of you trespasses upon the other’s property or privacy.

This person recognized the benefits of a wall, but was unhappy with it.  This wall had served a protective purpose in the past, but was no longer effective. This person had out-grown that wall; also, the wall was keeping out others besides the original people it was designed for.

So, together, we tried constructing a different wall.

At first, this person was unable to think of other  possibilities. The existing wall was so familiar and so old, it was difficult to imagine anything else being there, instead.

But, very soon, we were speculating about other walls. We considered castle walls, like these:

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And garden walls, like these:

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(thanks to Steve Snedecker’s Garden and Landscape Blog)

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We both realized there were lots of options, to re-construct that wall.

And, we realized the reconstruction project is completely under the control of the wall owner, who has the control to change the old wall to a new wall better fitting the current needs and conditions. There’s no need to tear down an old familiar wall, too soon. There’s time to work on that reconstruction, and (unlike real home re-building projects) every step along the way can bring improvement.

This post I’m building is almost finished.  What improvements are left to do?

(1) Check my trusty iPhone camera, for an example of walls.

Wow!  More than I expected:

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(see this blog post, for that wall)

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(this post, for that wall)

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(this post, for that wall)

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(this post, for those walls)

Oh!  And here’s a photo I took recently, that I haven’t shared yet:

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It’s a Wall of Candy (etc.)!!

Sorry, I got distracted. Where was I?

Oh yes. What’s left to do, before I end this post.

(2) Look into the near future, for walls (and other things) I may be seeing soon:

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Ahhhhhhh.  That’s better.

(3) Give credit, especially to writers, artists, and other people who create.

For example, the phrase “Good fences make good neighbors” is not just an old saying. It also appears in the poem, “The Mending Wall,” by Robert Frost:

Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That sends the frozen-ground-swell under it,
And spills the upper boulders in the sun,
And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.
The work of hunters is another thing:
I have come after them and made repair
Where they have left not one stone on a stone,
But they would have the rabbit out of hiding,
To please the yelping dogs. The gaps I mean,
No one has seen them made or heard them made,
But at spring mending-time we find them there.
I let my neighbor know beyond the hill;
And on a day we meet to walk the line
And set the wall between us once again.
We keep the wall between us as we go.
To each the boulders that have fallen to each.
And some are loaves and some so nearly balls
We have to use a spell to make them balance:
‘Stay where you are until our backs are turned!’
We wear our fingers rough with handling them.
Oh, just another kind of out-door game,
One on a side. It comes to little more:
There where it is we do not need the wall:
He is all pine and I am apple orchard.
My apple trees will never get across
And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him.
He only says, ‘Good fences make good neighbors’.
Spring is the mischief in me, and I wonder
If I could put a notion in his head:
‘Why do they make good neighbors? Isn’t it
Where there are cows?
But here there are no cows.
Before I built a wall I’d ask to know
What I was walling in or walling out,
And to whom I was like to give offence.
Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,
That wants it down.’ I could say ‘Elves’ to him,
But it’s not elves exactly, and I’d rather
He said it for himself. I see him there
Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top
In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed.
He moves in darkness as it seems to me~
Not of woods only and the shade of trees.
He will not go behind his father’s saying,
And he likes having thought of it so well
He says again, “Good fences make good neighbors.”

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And one more thing, before I end this post. I want to provide a soundtrack, for those who might enjoy that.  So here’s a tune, by Sting, that’s been playing in my head:

Thanks to PrettyBluePeople (for the “Fortress Around Your Heart” video on YouTube), to Sting, to Robert Frost, to people who build walls, to all my good neighbors (here and elsewhere), and to you — of course! — for visiting today.

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  1. I found this image here.

  2. I found this image here.

  3. I found this image here

  4. I found this image here.

  5. I found this image here.

Categories: inspiration, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 43 Comments

Day 225: Reasons why I should move to Edinburgh, Scotland

Reason #1:  Because humor is really important to me.

After spending just one full day in Edinburgh, I saw lots of evidence that this place would be a good match for my personal sense of humor.

For example, I like a good pun:

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I really appreciate visual humor, too:

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Also, my son and I went to several comedy shows yesterday, at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, (and we plan to go to more today).  By far, the funniest person we saw yesterday was Tom Joyce, apparently a non-professional comic and student at Edinburgh University.

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I want to say these things about Tom, after seeing him perform yesterday:

  1. Tom’s humor appeals to many ages. My 15-year-old son and I both started laughing as soon as Tom started his set and we didn’t stop until he did.
  2. Tom was very smart.
  3. I’ve never seen anybody quite like him, and I’ve seen a lot of comedy shows.
  4. Another time I had a thought like #3, above, was after seeing Steven Wright in a local Boston comedy club, when he was starting out in the late 1970s.
  5. People in Edinburgh must be REALLY funny, because Tom tied for 1st place as Edinburgh University Stand Up of The Year, 2013.

Reason #2: People in Edinburgh seem to be very modest.

After the comedy review show where we saw Tom yesterday, which included comics performing on their own during the festival, Tom was very gracious as he told us the disappointing news that he did not have his own show at the Fringe. When we asked Tom his last name, and told him how much we admired his act, he was kind and appreciative, but also wanted us to know, “I’m not really famous.”

And, nobody mentioned Tom’s recent stand-up award; we had to find that out by googling him.

I’ve seen other evidence, in Edinburgh, that the people can be quite humble here. And even though I’ve written, previously, about how bragging can be a good thing to practice (especially if you are working on self-esteem issues), I still value authentic humility and modesty.

Here’s more evidence of that, in Edinburgh, where people recognize the value of the little things:

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Reason #3:  There are so many amazing things to look at.

I wrote about photo opportunities in London, a few days ago. And while London is a truly beautiful city,  in Edinburgh every moment is a photo opportunity.  Here are just a few of the ones I was able to capture yesterday (in reverse chronological order):

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I wanted to end with that last image, above, because of my final reason, this morning:

Reason # 4: If you look more closely at anything in Edinburgh, you’re likely to see something else.

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Thanks to Tom Joyce, to the other wonderful people who live in Edinburgh, and to you, for looking today.

Categories: humor, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Day 224: Reasons why I shouldn’t spend too much time in our hotel room blogging this morning

Reason #1:  What’s outside the room.

Edinburgh and the Festival Fringe!

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Reason #2:  What’s inside the room.

This might be yet another example of the Cognitive Distortion of mind reading, but I think this creature, which I discovered in our hotel bathroom, is trying to tell me something:

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You may read something else into that expression, but I see this:

Ann!  Go out and enjoy Edinburgh, as soon as you can!

And who am I to argue with a purple duck?

Thanks for reading, everybody.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

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