Monday, January 4, 2010

A Turn for the Good

Oyster House View, 2009

I was coming home on New Year’s Eve from visiting my mother at the hospital. I’d taken my camera with me because 1) I try to always have a camera handy, 2) I hadn’t taken any pictures in a week and was itching to do so and 3) I find that people at the hospital are a little more attentive if they think you might start documenting things with a camera.

I was tired. I’d been working late hours over the Christmas holiday to catch up on work-related projects. My wife was at home preparing for the arrival of dinner guests without any help from me. And just when I didn’t need anything else to slow me down, my mother, who just celebrated her eighty-ninth birthday the week before, had fallen the day before at her assisted living facility and broken an ankle. A serious lapse in notifying me of the fall and delay in getting her to the hospital for treatment had added unnecessary additional physical and cognitive complications to her condition.

On New Year’s Eve, though, she was safely in the hands of the hospital. By all rights, I should have taken a left when I got to the intersection near our house and driven the last half mile straight home. But instead something told me to turn right and go down that road to a vacant lot overlooking Lynnhaven Bay.

I thought a brief walk by the water might be just the thing I needed. This wooded lot usually affords a sweeping view of the Lynnhaven Bay. (You can see a sunnier view here.) But on New Year’s Eve it was, as you can see in the picture above, very foggy and even when you got up to the water’s edge you couldn’t see more than a few yards in front of you. The only noise was the sound of moisture dripping from the trees and the quiet lapping of water at the shore line.

Whatever it was that had compelled me to take this brief moment out of the day was a voice I should probably listen to more. The calm and quiet of that foggy moment restored my peace of mind and sent me home minutes later in a far better mood. But before I left I took a few pictures to remind me of the serenity of the moment.


  1. "...I took the one less traveled by,
    and that has made all the difference."

    I, for one, am glad you did--what a beautiful photo! Hope your mom is doing ok. You really had a stressful time over the holidays! Here's wishing things ease up and calm down for you.

  2. Beautiful photo - and message, and so true.
    I am in similar place with my mom, and sorely in need of peace myself. ( I do like the tote-the-camera into the facility idea - will most definitely try it! I have already upped the attentiveness quotient, just by being very, ah, vocal about what I see that is (not) happening - as it should. So they get jumpy when I'm around!)