Country Roads

There’s so much ugliness out there it’s important to remember how beautiful so many things are. I went for a ride to the store tonight to pick up a pint of ice cream, since I can not be trusted with large quantities in the house, and it was a beautiful night:

It’s 70 degrees right now and there are no mosquitoes and it’s just lovely. And I am serious about the need to just unplug and relax- all of you need to do it. More and more this past couple of years I find myself just sitting in the living room with everything turned off except a light, with a dog or cat on my lap, just being quiet and clearing my head.






70 replies
  1. 1
    raven says:

    Take me home. . .

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  2. 2
    raven says:

    Try to see it once my way
    Everything zen, everything zen
    I don’t think so
    Everything zen, everything zen
    I don’t think so
    Everything zen, everything zen

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  3. 3
    NotMax says:

    Ah-choo!

    :)

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  4. 4
    geg6 says:

    Koda and Lovey are two of the reasons I’m still here at this point. On this earth, I mean, not BJ. They love me and need me no matter how fucked up everthing is. They are my reason for going on.

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  5. 5

    It’s already dark here. It’s amazing how much a few degrees of longitude changes the timing of nightfall.

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  6. 6
    Yarrow says:

    West Virginia summers are gorgeous. I miss the state. Love those country roads.

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  7. 7
    Mary G says:

    Those are beautiful pictures. Post more of them, please.

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  8. 8
    MagdaInBlack says:

    Thank you!
    Much better ☺️

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  9. 9
    Elizabelle says:

    Love the photos. And good advice.

    Enjoy the ice cream. (What flavor?)

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  10. 10
    John Cole says:

    @Elizabelle: Strawberry

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  11. 11
    At sunset the tiercel flew above the marsh, pursuing a wisp of snipe. They drummed away down wind, like stone skidding across ice. says:

    .

    More and more this past couple of years I find myself just sitting in the living room with everything turned off except a light, with a dog or cat on my lap, just being quiet and clearing my head.

    I’ve heard of goat yoga, so why not dog/cat meditation?

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  12. 12
    debit says:

    Lovely, John. Truly beautiful pictures.

    In addition to unplugging, doing something physical is helpful in reducing stress. I bike commute to work, and have found that as weather improved and the more I was on my bike, the better I was able to cope with our shit lord.

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  13. 13
    opiejeanne says:

    @Smedley Darlington Prunebanks (formerly Mumphrey, et al.): It won’t be truly dark here until nearly 10pm. And the days are getting shorter now.

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  14. 14
    Aimai says:

    Finally went back to yoga tonight. A slow vinyasa class. Wonderful!

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  15. 15
    Major Major Major Major says:

    Beautiful! Thanks for sharing.

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  16. 16

    @debit: I went to The Huntington today, tonight…out for more Milky Way pics.

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  17. 17

    @opiejeanne: I commented back at ya over at my Flickr.

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  18. 18
    debit says:

    @🐾BillinGlendaleCA: Also making something beautiful is a good strategy. :)

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  19. 19
    R Nuerenberg says:

    Love to see your road photography. As a moto-pilot myself, I take a lot of road photos as well. Anyway, nice photos.

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  20. 20
    Mj_Oregon says:

    I’m hoping your weather stays beautiful and temps are reasonable for the four-rooted members of the family. However. Why in the hell did you need to send the heat to Oregon? It’s almost 7 pm and it’s still 95 in my back yard. Last Thursday it was 75 and perfect.

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  21. 21
    A Ghost To Most says:

    An absolutely gorgeous evening here after a week of 90s-100s (not comparable to WBGV, since the humidity has been in single digits).

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  22. 22
    Brachiator says:

    Absolutely agree that relaxation is necessary. But then it’s whatever works for you. I love the noise and excitement of cities. A play or crowded movie theater where everyone is laughing or gasping recharges me. Or a concert. Reading a book with some soft music in the background.

    Yesterday evening, I ran through the funkiest music clips on YouTube, from Pressure Drop to Sex Machine to Atomic Dog.

    It’s all good.

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  23. 23

    @debit: I’m headed to a new site up the coast, we’ll see how it works out.

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  24. 24
    Pogonip says:

    John, you live in a beautiful area. Almost heaven…

    Meanwhile here in Upper Pogonippia, the heat wave is predicted to resume this weekend.

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  25. 25
    tobie says:

    John, what a beautiful sunset.

    This is a bit of politics but still good news: I went to my county’s democratic club meeting, which was itself boring, but it had about 40 people, which was amazing in a ruby red, rural county. A wave is forming. Lots of grassroots enthusiasm.

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  26. 26
    CaseyL says:

    It’s hot where I am, and heat enervates me totally. Like that old saying, “Sometimes I sits and thinks, and sometimes I just sits.” These days, it’s “just sits” for me. (Though I did take a nice long walk during lunch. Which sapped about all the energy I did have!)

    I unplugged ages ago. My TV gathers dust. I watch some shows on-line, and follow the news mostly via this place and Twitter. It’s done wonders – I’m still full of rage, and still rooting for the meteor, but my head hasn’t exploded, and I count that a win.

    @geg6: I’m with you there. My kitties have kept me going through some very bad times.

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  27. 27
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @Brachiator:

    But then it’s whatever works for you. I love the noise and excitement of cities. A play or crowded movie theater where everyone is laughing or gasping recharges me.

    I’m just the opposite. Crowds suck the life out of me. Making something, or cruising the high roads recharge me.

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  28. 28
    Dan B says:

    @opiejeanne: With you in the zone of long days – south Beacon Hill, Seattle Beacon Hill. 82 here at 7 PM PST. Our furnace died 9 years ago. We opted for ductless heat pumps, figured we’d use the AC function one or two days a year, ha! Last year we ran it 30 days! Looks like a repeat this year. No vlimate change. Only dog can change the climate.
    Of course it’s good for ice cream.

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  29. 29
    M. Bouffant says:

    @raven: You beat me. (I was going to post Toots if your link had led to John Denver.)

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  30. 30
    Shell says:

    I ran through the funkiest music clips on YouTube,

    Ive been catching up with some Irish (and one Scottish) groups I havent listened to in a while. Clannad, Bothy Band, Silly Wizard, even a few Chieftains. Triona Ni Dhomhnaill singing “There Was A Lady.” Uhhhh,I almost start crying.

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  31. 31
    Brachiator says:

    Ran across this article about Albert Einstein’s advice on recharging. Or maybe a Google algorithm dug it up for me. Anyway…

    “No telephones, no responsibilities, absolute tranquility…I am lying on the shore like a crocodile, allowing myself to be roasted by the sun, never see a newspaper, and do not give a hoot about the so-called world.”

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/bryancollinseurope/2018/07/12/4-timeless-productivity-lessons-from-albert-einstein/

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  32. 32
    chopper says:

    @Dan B:

    well, last year we had the smoke from the fires keeping our windows closed for half the summer so the a/c ran more. today was the first day this year i had to put it on. vlimate change, indeed

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  33. 33
    WereBear says:

    Oddly, the lack of alternative to fighting them keeps my stress level manageable. The outcome may be in doubt, but the necessity is sbsolute.

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  34. 34
    rikyrah says:

    Beautiful pictures 😄

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  35. 35
    opiejeanne says:

    @Dan B: We don’t have AC but I’m weakening. We have gotten by with shutting down the furnace and running its fan, because the intake is in the garage where it’s always colder, and we have box fans we move around, But this summer I am weakening. I have the name of a guy and may ask him for an estimate.

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  36. 36
    Gelfling 545 says:

    It’s been beautiful here in Buffalo. Heat but not too humid with a breeze and cool evenings. Perfect. Well, the 4th was 97 degrees but mostly its been delightful.

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  37. 37
    Brachiator says:

    @Shell:

    Triona Ni Dhomhnaill singing “There Was A Lady.” Uhhhh,I almost start crying.

    Sweet song. Thanks.

    ReplyReply
  38. 38
    Jager says:

    Nice evening up in the canyon, our new septic tanks are covered up with dirt, tomorrow the landscaping begins. Tonight, it’s cooler, pear Gorgonzola salad, Lemon pepper roast chicken and chilled Pinot Noir on the porch. Mrs J and Anze the Dog are content and I’ve had a couple of Jack and waters.

    I’ve driven through “Cole Country” in the summer and it is nice.

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  39. 39
    Another lurker says:

    @Shell: Try the Celtic Punk stylings of “The Real McKenzies” . I am a new convert to them, I only own 1 of their Albums “West Winds”. Lots of Nautical influence, Scottish history, hardcore punk, etc. . They kick ass and they are playing San Francisco in September at The Bottom of the Hill. BTW for what its worth , my info is lost after every post. I don’t really care, though. Enough on my mind with some health problems.

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  40. 40
    Another lurker says:

    Why am I in moderation? I mind my manners :-)

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  41. 41
    ArchTeryx says:

    Yeah. I’ve spent the last 24 hours or so suicidally depressed (and that’s not hyperbole – when I feel I have no way out but death, I start looking for the cleanest and most painless way to go). A little beauty is sorely needed medicine for my tattered soul right now.

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  42. 42
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Just listened to Red Ryder’s “Lunatic Fringe” to close out the evening’s music.. I’m sad to say it seems obsolete now. I wonder how Tom Cochrane would write it today.

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  43. 43
    Dan B says:

    @opiejeanne: We remember moving fans around. Friends have it down to a science. When we moved 9ff Capitol Hill this new house had no insulation. It hit 104 degrees the first week and 99 the next, with no shade and no insulation! We went whole hog: Solar PV, radical air sealing and insulation, ductless heat pumps, and electric car (with AC). We stay inside and the cats stay outside enjoying the heat. The heat pumps are amazing. It’s hard to believe they heat, or cool, the entire house and are quiet and inexpensive. Without them we might spend more time at Jefferson Park, for the breeze and views of city and bay (and families of every race and nationality) or Seward Park, with the lake and old growth forest (and more UN of families).
    Sunday we’ll be at our friends in West Seattle. They’ve got a 1500 square foot deck 6 floors up with a view of Puget Sound and the Olympics to die for. The forecast is for close to 90 but they seem to get a breeze off Puget Sound, whose waters top out at 50 degrees in late summer. Their place gets warm enough to want to sit in the shade and drink French wine, but not to sing the Marseillaise!

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  44. 44
    NotMax says:

    @Brachiator

    Atomic Dog

    No Atomic Rooster?

    #1#2

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  45. 45
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @ArchTeryx: Do you have someone to talk to? Some sort of support system?

    “Don’t let the bastards beat you”

    – Billy Joel

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  46. 46
    NotMax says:

    @ArchTeryx

    Don’t hesitate, don’t try to rationalize, make the call to a hotline.

    They’re not there to judge, they’re not there to lecture, they’re there for you.

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  47. 47
    Mnemosyne says:

    I went and got a massage because the muscle in my back that likes to spasm was acting up again. It was lovely.

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  48. 48
    The Dangerman says:

    @A Ghost To Most:

    Just listened to Red Ryder’s “Lunatic Fringe”…

    I can’t get The Calls “The Walls Came Down” out of my head; “corporate criminals playing with tanks” seems so apropos right now.

    ReplyReply
  49. 49
    gene108 says:

    @ArchTeryx:

    What help do you need? What can we do?

    Please hang in there, you are a valuable part of this community.

    ReplyReply
  50. 50
    ArchTeryx says:

    @A Ghost To Most: Yes, thank heavens. I live with my closest friend and have a fiancee and a small networking of lifelong friends. In that, I’m luckier than most – if it wasn’t for them I’d have killed myself off 20 years ago from depression alone – before any of the terrible political things started happening.

    I feel like a cornered animal. Maybe that’s not entirely rational, but the country that this Supreme Court is going to inculcate will be unrecognizable and quite possibly one I cannot survive in, as I’m a walking preexisting condition. It’s exactly as a wise person said in another thread – it’s effectively a mini-constitutional convention, one utterly unanswerable to the voters or to either of the other branches of government. No liberal law will stand more than a year for the foreseeable future, and folks like me are hunted animals now.

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  51. 51
    ArchTeryx says:

    @gene108: Gonna do my best. Valuable? I’m just some lurker most days, reading comment threads and trying not to be too behind the times.

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  52. 52

    @Shell: I foolishly listened to Sandy Denny’s recording of Who Knows Where The Time Goes a couple of days ago, and things got really blurry there for awhile.

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  53. 53
    Mnemosyne says:

    @ArchTeryx:

    I know your medical situation is complicated, but an antidepressant could save your life. If you can’t add another medication, some people have had good luck with a new magnetic intercranial therapy.

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  54. 54
    Barbara says:

    @ArchTeryx: It is oppressive to the soul to be so worried but I know that there are many people who are going to do our best to keep anyone from being hunted by these bastards. I beg you not to do their dirty work for them.

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  55. 55
    At sunset the tiercel flew above the marsh, pursuing a wisp of snipe. They drummed away down wind, like stone skidding across ice. says:

    @ArchTeryx:

    Aside from the prosaic yet shouldn’t be dismissed puppy dogs and cotton candy and true love – there’s lots to live for. Mueller will indict or Trump will be out of office in January 2020. There will be a blue wave in 2018 and an even larger one in 2020.

    Trump is the giant ball of phlem coughed up during the death rattle of the RWNJ, white people are best people, hold an aspirin between your knees for birth control crowd. They’re done.

    With their passing, America actually has a chance of being the beacon of hope and equality she has always pretended to be.

    That’s worth sticking around for.

    Make sure you reach out to you fiancee and friends tonight. Not tomorrow. There are people who love you and trusting them enough to tell them your troubling thoughts is the greatest honor you can give someone and it will only bring you closer.

    ReplyReply
  56. 56
    Shell says:

    @Barbara: Well said!

    ReplyReply
  57. 57
    Platonailedit says:

    Arguing on Twitter.

    pic.twitter.com/r7t5xQLnBG— Paul Bronks (@BoringEnormous) July 12, 2018

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  58. 58
    gene108 says:

    @ArchTeryx:

    Something from a support group I went to after I got out of the hospital after my suicide attempt 15 years ago. Helps me even now, when I feel down and disconnected from people. Wording is a bit awkward, but I highlighted the part I can remember

    NO matter how bad my physical, mental, social, or spiritual condition. I am always a human person and a connecting link between persons. I am valuable; my life has a purpose; and I have a unique place and unique part in it”.

    May not be what you are looking for right now, I don’t know, but it has helped me stay grounded, when my inner voice keeps saying bad things about how much I am worth.

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  59. 59
    The Dangerman says:

    @At sunset the tiercel flew above the marsh, pursuing a wisp of snipe. They drummed away down wind, like stone skidding across ice.:

    there’s lots to live for. Mueller will indict or Trump will be out of office in January 2020. There will be a blue wave in 2018 and an even larger one in 2020.

    Pretty much this; Trump won’t win in 2020 if he isn’t impeached, Obamacare may be attacked in the short term but something better (and unassailable; see Medicare) will come out of it in the end, it’s gonna be a little interesting for a little while, but we’ll get through it

    ETA: For whomever brought up Ireland and the Chieftains earlier: Nanci Griffith with The Chieftains

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  60. 60
    danielx says:

    Yes, times ten. A drive in the country with the music turned up is therapy, almost as stress-reducing as a purring cat in your lap.

    ReplyReply
  61. 61
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @ArchTeryx:
    I understand. I was there at the end of last year.

    This fight is far from over. The coming indictments and the election will hopefully turn the tide. WASF – We Are Still Fighting

    ReplyReply
  62. 62
    Mnemosyne says:

    There’s a documentary coming out soon about songwriter Howard Ashman — a distribution deal is still being discussed.

    ReplyReply
  63. 63

    @raven: This. This. So much of this.

    Great pics John, thank you.

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  64. 64
    Miss Bianca says:

    @Shell: I do a version of “Do You Love an Apple” that’s pretty much a shameless rip-off of Triona’s, so I feel ya. : )

    ReplyReply
  65. 65
    jl says:

    Thanks to Cole for the beautiful and relaxing W by God Va countryside pix. I think that area is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been to.

    ReplyReply
  66. 66
    Mnemosyne says:

    @jl:

    I’ve mentioned before that I read a travel book about America written by Frances Trollope around 1836. She thought America was beautiful but hated Americans, and she said that Wheeling was the most beautiful place she had seen in all of her travels,

    ReplyReply
  67. 67
    cokane says:

    youre right cole but you need to take the time to bang out some essays with the forethought from these meditative moments like you did in the old days they were good and will be good again

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  68. 68
    NotoriousJRT says:

    Trey Gowdy May be bright, but he needs help dressing and grooming himself. Swimming in Hagrid’s suit coat, Harry Potter hair, and goofy stubble calling attention to his jug handle ears, he looked unhinged.

    ReplyReply
  69. 69
    NotoriousJRT says:

    @NotoriousJRT:
    Meant to post downstairs. Sorry!

    ReplyReply
  70. 70
    SectionH says:

    Almost Heaven, West Makaha, high ridge mountains, crystal clear blue water…

    IZ’s version: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vQJTIlKKYK8

    (eta: Sorry for ugly link, something’s not working with links.)

    That’s Israel Kamakawiwo’ole’s (IZ’s) cover. Gotta admit I like Makaha more than I do WV ( sorry J R) – I get both places have their beauty.

    ReplyReply

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