Thursday, November 29, 2012

Azalea Bonsai Exhibit at Ueno Park - Part 2

Here are the rest of the Azalea bonsai that I saw in Ueno park. You can find the first post here.
These unlike the last post are more tree like and stand up in a Christmas tree like shape. I am not feeling it and it might just be my preference but they are still beautiful to look at. 


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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Fall is coming to an end

Hey guys!

So it has been a little while since I have done an update, maybe since late October or the post about hurricane Sandy on Nov. 1st. Well anyways not to much has really changed since then. The large job that I was working on at dominion Power is now for the most part complete. I wont be going back in unless they have some other thing about it that they need me to check out for them. I was there for a lot longer then I was expecting and was great to build up some money. I did talk to my boss that (company that I interned for and now a contractor) and she said she probably has an idea to use me on another project with Dominion since I am already use to working there and have clearance. I can hope for it! She also invited me to the company Christmas Party which is nice. I am still also the server which I have to work 6-9:30pm tonight which isn't to bad. After tips it's like making $20 and hour which is great, plus you get to take home all of your tip money even what was put on the credit cards. Now I walk around like a boss with my wad of $1 bills haha. I still am looking around for that full time position as that is what I need period. I am a graduate and need to pick up and go with it!
Fall is really coming to an end now, most of the leaves have changed or fallen now. Some maples still might have their leaves on with bright reds and oranges, check out Maymont post from last week here. I mist a lot of the nice weather but I was glad that I was able to go to the mountains when they were changing and hike Old Rag and also the check out around town at the colors. Fall is one of those awesome seasons that really draw me outside to capture the colors. It rivals the Spring time! I think I still have a few more pictures that I can post of the fall so look forward  to them! I also been taking out my Fujica AX-3, I tried something like removing the old foam and covering up the window in the back of the door to see if that fixes the light leak. If not then it is the foam at the hinges and the edges where the door comes together. I will find out when I get this roll developed, just need to use it up first!
Winter is heading our way. I am starting the feel the cool air coming on us, especially those crisp clear sky nights where their is a breeze and you get that shiver up your spine. It isn't to bad yet with the days peaking at 45 Degrees F. It has been freezing at night a couple of times but I don't mind the cold weather but so much. My hands get really dry though and that can be annoying. I can't wait for it to snow, I love it when it snows and it is really pretty when it happens when you are back in the woods.
I did not do any buying of anything on Black Friday or Cyber Monday at all! That is a record for me as I have done so and gotten up early for it for years, before I could even drive :) I did buy a model the other day at normal price because I was dying to have it and needed something else to keep my hands and mind busy inside for the holidays  Problem is that I use spray cans and it will probably be to cold to paint outside for a while. I  might get a lucky day where there is no breeze and it is over 50 degrees F. Today was right at 50 but I need to not be lazy and go get the right color of spray.
How was everyone's Thanksgiving for those that celebrate it? I ended up working on thanksgiving but no one came in the bowling alley so I was let go early and had two Thanksgiving (one before and after work) that day and they both were tasty!!! My grandparents form Maryland came down to enjoy it with us and it was nice.
Oh yeah, how was everyone's Halloween???!?!?
So right before Halloween I met someone. Well more like I didn't meet someone but I knew them, just made my feelings more obvious to them. It was someone that I worked with at the retail job I had for all that time (2007-2011) and I kinda just kissed her when we were hanging out. I was super nervous that I made our friendship awkward by doing so but she returned it. It made me really happy and not to long after did we start to date. I can easily say that I have been really happy. I feel that I can be really honest with her and she really cares about us and myself. Oh did I mention she is in culinary and a magnificent baker? She makes some great meals! I am not the kind of guy using her for that, I cook for her and she loves it. I smile every time I see her it's crazy. Sorry to get all mushy, but it is just great that I can feel at ease around her. Take a look!
Oh and she is camera Shy!

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Anyways thanks for taking a look!!!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Fall Colors at Maymont

Hey everyone! 
I hope you guys have been enjoying the fall weather and colors that have appeared everywhere. I was going to go camping in the mountains where the colors are long gone now with my new girl friend but we decided to stay in town. Plus we had some colds that we wanted to rest up on and get better. We decided to do a picnic/drink tea at  Maymont in the afternoon this past Saturday and the colors on the Maple trees were gorgeous! The deep reds and the oranges with yellows were driving me crazy. She also loved them as well! I think I might have to do a post on how we ended up together but I will keep that for another time. Anyways enjoy the leaves, that is pretty much the majority of the pictures!

Like I said the colors were so vivid and deep, it was to bad that the sun was mostly down so there wasn't much light. 

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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Azalea Bonsai Exhibit at Ueno Park - Part 1

When I visited Tokyo and went to Ueno park, post here, I was able to catch a special Bonsai exhibit near the fountains by the museums. All of them were Azalea's, check out my azaleas here
They were all really fantastic and nice to look at. A lot of people my age walked by them and didn't pay any mind but all the older Japanese folk stopped and were taking pictures like I was or talking among themselves deciding which might be the best technique in the designs. I love all bonsai and plants but somethings are breathtaking to what you can manipulate a plant to do and show. Yo can put an entire story into or a landscape and it fit in a pot not larger then 12" X 12". I got big into bonsai and I have a few small ones but these are great! Also these are way older then me by probably another 40 years. I have two posts since there were so many to see so sit back and enjoy them, the next post will come out in a few days. Also as a side note, there is not a normal azalea that has multiple color leaves, like some leaves are white then the rest or pink. They were grafted onto the azalea and there are of course hybrid ones as well ^^

The colors are great in this one.

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Yasaka Shrine - Kyoto, Japan

This shrine was once called Gion-jinja or Gion Shrine which as you can tell is in the Gion district of Kyoto where you will find Geisha and tourists. The shrine was originally constructed in 656, that is a long time ago. 
An interesting piece of history and I have found that it has had shaped a lot of shrines is that there was an epidemic in 869 in Kyoto. The mikoshi (divine paladin  of this shrine paraded around town to ward off this epidemic, and that started the Gion Matsuri (festival) which is a huge festival now! You can also access Maruyama Park if you walk through. Enjoy the pictures.
One cool thing about shrines is that they are open all the time and free usually. You can come through at night and see all of the lanterns alight. Brings a whole new experience.


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I really love the orange that you find in all the shrines...

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Friday, November 16, 2012

Home away from Home in Kyoto

So it has been 6 months to this day that I spent my first night in Japan. I stayed at a house that does home stay's. Some short term and long term, what ever you are looking for. They are the Konaka's Residence, they have a small imported Wine store on the first level off Kitayama-dori. It is up in the Northern part but it is an easy walk to places to get food, and there was a new store that opened right next door so I could get all my food to cook. Also you can walk with no problem or bike to the Golden Pavilion or Kinkaku-ji temple. It was a nice place to stay at and you get your own room. there might be others there but the family generally will let you do what you want. They will answer any questions that you might have while you are there and will give you plenty of information. Well here are some pictures from the place that I stayed at. 

My room had not to big or small, it was good for my stay. I had a closet, futon, cabinets, a table and a shorter table. I loved Mets Grapefruit!


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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Rain, leaves, twilight

Yesterday I got out and around my woods for a bit after the sun finally broke through the clouds. It was right after 4pm so the sun was setting and it was golden time. Problem with golden time in my woods is that most of it is in a hollow so the light is at the top of the trees. It had rained yesterday and was a bit cool out maybe around 40 degrees F. Anyways, there still some colors out there from fall that have yet fallen off. Enjoy.


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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Box Turtles Everywhere

Few weeks ago there were turtles all around the place, what was up with that? Matting seasons I suppose!
I enjoy these turtles, we had one live in our front yard for a month this summer. 

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Saturday, November 10, 2012

Fall in Shenandoah

I went up in the mountains specifically the Shenandoah National Park where I hiked Old Rag mountain and then spent the night up at Loft Mountain and did some minor hiking. 
The park is super crowded at this time of year and makes pulling in lookout points really hard as it is packed with cars and people taking pictures with cameras, phones and iPad's. Don't get me wrong it was nice to go and quite relaxing to see the colors and enjoy my favorite destinations!

Enjoy the pictures below!

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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Maiko girls on the Streets of gion - Kyoto, Japan

Walking around in Gion area after I visited the Kiomizu-dera temple I came across a few Maiko girls which are Geisha in raining. I do not know if they were real or not as you can come in this area as a tourist and pay to get dressed up in makeup and walk around for a few hours in it and get pictures taken. 
Anyways, here are a couple girls that I took pictures of, crazy amount of time is put into the outfit. 
They are cute though, am I right?


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Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Maruyama Koen Park - Kyoto, Japan

Maruyama Park which is located really close to Yasaka Shrine and Gion area. It is a great place to Cherry Blossom view but of course I was not there and missed out on that. There is a weeping cherry tree that is really popular and during the time of blossom viewing they light it up at night. this is a public and free park here and you can cut through Yasaka Shrine and it is the oldest park in Kyoto. Anyways enjoy the pictures that I have. 


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Nice clock in the middle of the park...

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Sunday, November 4, 2012

Old Rag Mountain

I went a few weeks ago myself to hike Old Rag Mountain myself and it was a blast. It was right after a lot of rain so there was fog that hung around for a long time.
The colors were nice to see as I went up...

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Friday, November 2, 2012

Jishu Shrine of Love - Kyoto, Japan

I visited the Jishu Shrine of Love which is located on the grounds of the ever so popular Kiomizu-dera Temple in Kyoto. This Shrine was dedicated to Okuninushi which is a god of love. At this shrine they have two loves stones that stand apart. If you are lonely or single then you can walk between then with your eyes closed. If you can walk all the way to the other rock and reach it with out opening your eyes then you will find love or perhaps true love. I had this explained to me while I was there by some students and I went ahead and did it successfully but I might have received a little help haha. If you get some assistance then that means that you will be assisted in finding that love through other means, a go-between. Something to start things moving. 
It was crowded and I had a lot of people stare at me while I did it haha.

The shrine was popular among the students, probably trying to find out who likes who :)

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I picked up my green  traveling charm for safe travel at this shrine, I have safely traveled everywhere since then since I always have it with myself.

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Thursday, November 1, 2012

After Hurricane Sandy

I would say that we here in Richmond are really lucky and out of the horrific grasp of Hurricane sandy. Many states in the North East and New England were not so lucky though. There was a lot of damage and I am sure you probably have seen it on the news at some point. I didn't ride it out at home like I said and there was not really any type of damage around here for us to worry about. Just leaves and limbs down and didn't even lose the power.
Here is the backyard, looks like we have more the rake now!

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Sophie was out enjoying the nice weather after the storm, my cat actually decided to go outside that night in it, she isn't to bright haha.

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Thanks for looking!
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