Posts

Showing posts from August, 2009

The Santa Rosa - Hornblower Yachts

Image
The Hornblower yachts are docked at different piers along the Embarcadero depending on their mission. The photo above is of the Santa Rosa yacht which is docked at Pier 3 and cruises to various points North. I took many shots of this boat and chose this one as I wanted to give you a full view. This particular yacht has a capacity of about 500 and has a ballroom below deck. These yachts are available for private parties and dining. Many have lunch, dinner and brunch cruises. One also accommodates the tours to Alcatraz. I took one of those tours a while back and it was so much fun. Then again, I love boats. I remember having lunch consisting of a salad and chicken cacciatore - almost like my Mom used to make with a dessert that made my palate smile.

The tour to Alcatraz has become so popular that now you need to book days in advance which means you need to make your reservations before you leave home. I sent a couple of friends on a brunch cruise a couple of years ago for their …

The 7 Menopausal Dwarfs

Image
I saw this over at Cute As A Buggy and could not resist re-posting it. Although funny when seeing it now, it was not so funny while going through the stages. Please visit Cute As A Buggy here. Enjoy!

Entrecard /Adgitize /Project Wonderful /Google Adsense

Image
When I began blogging over a year ago now Entrecardwas the first advertising method I used. I loved the idea of having my own business card widget and being able to advertise on other blogs just by using the credits I earned from dropping on different blogs. I have never paid for credits with EC. I always just earned by dropping and I think I only once dropped the maximum 300 which at that time I said to myself I would never do again. It literally took hours. I normally drop around 100 and receive about half back.

As with Adgitize there is the constant problem with receiving virus warnings, browser takeovers and all the other annoyances that go hand in hand with dropping EC. Now with their latest news that alerts all of us they will no longer be providing credits for drop backs I'm asking myself why should I stay with them? EC has said that the credits to advertise on other blogs will decrease as a result of this change and therefore we will all be able to take advantage of …

Perfection

Image
The year’s at the spring
And day’s at the morn;
Morning’s at seven;
The hillside’s dew-pearled;
The lark’s on the wing;
The snail’s on the thorn;
God’s in His heaven -
All’s right with the world!

~Robert Browning I love this poem by Robert Browning. It epitomizes perfection. It speaks of new birth. The birth of Spring, the birth of dawn. It shows how the universe is in order and on a divine path. The earth and nature are perfection. As humans, we manipulate the earth and it’s bounty by our ego driven acts. Rather than looking at the earth and the gifts it has bestowed upon us we are constantly looking for more and striving to be that perfect person. We look for situations and outside sources to make us feel perfect. We look without rather than within. Rather than seeing the earth in awe, we see it as awful.Each day the earth rotates, the sun rises, the sun sets, the stars glisten and the flowers bloom. These daily earthly rituals are perfection yet we only see the imperfections. Bein…

Blog Awards

Image
First I want to thank Icy over at Reach Beyond Limits for the following awards. I am ecstatic! I visit Icy daily and find so much inspiration from her writings and photos that I should be granting her awards. She is such a thoughtful and caring friend which make these awards so very special to me and I appreciate them so much. Thanks Icy. Make sure to visit her blog at http://reachbeyondlimits.blogspot.com

For the honest scrap award I have listed 10 honest things about myself.

10 honest things about myself
I love all music. When I'm down all I have to do is listen to some music and it completely changes my mood.
I love mustard, yellow mustard. I can put mustard on anything, including eggs and love it.I am the most impatient person in the world. Waiting in lines, waiting for buses, waiting for anything drives me nuts.I despise self righteous people. I don't care who you are if you have that attitude, I don't want to be around you.I am addicted to the soap opera All My C…

Green Tips From The San Francisco Zoo

Image
Courtesy of the San Francisco Zoo
Green Home CleaningBefore you do any cleaning, why not start by cleaning out all the cleaning products under your sink or in your cupboard? You’ll free up lots of space while freeing yourself from toxins, allergens and irritants. Be sure not to throw those products in the trash – make sure the lids are tight, box them up and take them to your local household hazardous waste disposal facility (visit www.1800cleanup.org to find a location).All you need in your cupboard for a clean and healthy home are the following:Baking soda (bicarbonate of soda). This multi-purpose alkali powder can remove stains from tile, glass, oven doors, and china as well as fruit juice and acidic stains; clean the inside of your refrigerator; absorb odors; and remove baked-on food from pans.Borax. A powder or crystalline salt sold in most grocery stores, borax is a water softener and sanitizer. It makes an excellent freshener when added to laundry and is an all-around deodoriz…

Wordless Wednesday -Sony Holland Sings "At Last"

Silver Street Performer

We have a wide variety of street performers here in San Francisco. Many perform around the Fisherman’s Wharf area and others just set up shop downtown and anywhere tourists can be found. I was reminded of this story by a post on AVCr8teur's Photo Blog.
Years ago, right after September 11th I was working in Ghirardelli Square. Our store was located right on the West plaza near the fountain. After 911 things were very slow and quiet. No one was really traveling so the square was basically a ghost town. It was in the afternoon when we happened to see some guy with his face and arms painted silver with a duffel bag on the bench across from the store. He opened the bag, took out silver clothing with wires attached to the attire and began getting dressed. Now remember this was right after 911 so we were scared of anything unusual. Seeing wires attached to this guy dressed all in silver was definitely unusual and something we hadn’t seen before. So, panicking, we alerted security…

Standing Alone

Image
Strength of numbers is the
delight of the mind.
The Valiant in spirit glory in
fighting alone.
GhandiDid you ever notice that when you decide on doing something, whether it be changing jobs or following your dreams and you begin to discuss your ideas with family, co-workers and friends, that you will inevitably need to defend your ideas and most likely end up arguing in defense of your thoughts? Why? Because when we put those ideas out there, two things happen. First, behind those ideas is our ego intent on bragging to others in order to validate the thoughts and intent. Remember that intent from ego is taking the wrong direction. Intent from heart is the true and right direction.Second, no matter how strong you feel about your idea, the fact is that when others finish telling you how “out there” your idea is or give you logical reasons as to why it’s never going to work, all that negativity will kill your idea and result in it never coming to fruition.As in the quote above, the Vali…

Alcatraz Island

Image
Before Alcatraz began operation as a federal prison in 1934 hosting residence to the likes of Al Capone and Robert Stroud (The Birdman of Alcatraz) it was a harbor defense post and military prison back in the nineteenth century. The lighthouse went into operation in 1954 and was the first American lighthouse in operation on the West Coast. It can be seen from 18 miles out to sea. Alcatraz was closed as a federal prison in 1963 when it became the site for an Indian protest movement. The Golden Gate National Recreation Area took over maintaining and preserving the island later on and reopened it as a park in 1973.It is owned by the Federal Government and as a result is required to be maintained as is.

There have been various proposals to take down the prison and build hotels, spas and shopping complexes on the island but all of these proposals have been rejected by the government.In 1973, the year it re-opened as a park and sight seeing attraction it hosted over fifty thousand visitor…

Thank You Froggy Bloggy & Secondary Roads

Image
I'd like to thank Justine at The Froggy Bloggy for sending me the 1000 EC credits she won for the most embarrassing contest award on Secondary Roads. Please visit Justine's blog & The Secondary Roads blog by clicking on the images below. Also a very special thank you to Chuck at Secondary Roads - Very much appreciated. You can read all about the contest and submissions here.


Tranquility

Image
Tranquility

Beyond darkness
within light
lies the key
to acceptance,
one with spirit.

Ego absentia
authentic truth
caress the soul,
awakening.

Vocalist Sony Holland - Interview & Review

Image
Photo courtesy of www.sonyholland.com
All Rights Reserved

Upcoming Performances, Discography & Video

Sony Holland Videos

Billed as the largest jazz festival in the world, the San Jose Jazz Festival attracted more than 100,000 people over its three-day gig.The event so huge that trying to find the admission and will call booths is like being on a scavenger hunt – with no clues. There was music emanating throughout the entire downtown area.No matter where you were Latin rhythms from the Salsa stage and Afro beats on the main stage kept your ears reverberating in a sweltering crescendo of musical heat.
It ended on Sunday with a packed house in the Imax Dome Theatre - Tech Museum on the Smith Dobson Tribute stage with the Sony Holland quartet consisting of Sony Holland – vocals, Benny Watson on piano, Seward McCain on bass, David Rokeach on drums and Jeff Buenz on guitar.
It was a much-anticipated concert due to Ms. Holland’s return to the Bay Area specifically for this performance.They did…

Wordless Wednesday - San Francisco Strange

Image
I came across this camel on Ocean Beach near the Cliff House one day while on my walk. I don't know why he was there but I can tell you that his fur was the softest fur I had ever felt and his presence made for a great photo opportunity.




Created of iron and living foliage, this crab is located at the entrance to Pier 39 and is photographed hundreds of times per day by tourists. Why? I will never understand.



Pots n' Pans drummer along the Embarcadero. He makes a living at his craft.

Ya'Sou! Ezine - A Call For Submissions

Image
Ya'Sou! Ezine is now closed and has been for quite a while. I am no longer accepting any submissions. Thank You.



Ya'Sou! Ezine is a creative arts online magazine being published on a daily basis. It was started over a decade ago in print form and transformed onto an online platform when hard copy printing costs increased to a level where I could no longer afford to print and mail a hard copy version.

I created Ya'Sou! as a tribute to my Mother Dorothy who always encouraged my writing and poetical interests. If it were not for her I seriously do not think I would have become a poet/writer. This ezine is a tribute to her memory and a way for me to give back to the creative community a piece of myself in honor of my Mom who passed away in 1994.

I'm always asked about the name Ya'Sou! Though spelled a bit different, the Greek meaning is "To Yours" which is commonly used as a toast on special occasions. I decided on the name because it was different and al…

Fort Mason

Image
Located along the Northern tip of San Francisco Fort Mason served as a Military Army base for over one hundred years. It was also a coastal defence base for over 30 years. After the military conversion it now houses officers’ quarters with many buildings open to the public. Sitting on twelve hundred acres of land the area hosts over fifty buildings which are used for entertainment and educational purposes. There is a youth hostel located within Fort Mason Park and is frequented by many tourists especially during the Summer.



San Francisco residents who own boats and yachts use the docks adjacent to Fort Mason for their housing. Hundreds of years ago these docks housed merchant marine ships and served as a military port.



As in the above photos the views from this area are gorgeous. The Golden Gate Bridge can be seen in the far background as well as the Marin Headlands. If you enjoy walking or biking there is a path along the Fort Mason and Marina area where you can walk or bike t…

Vocalist Sony Holland - Upcoming Performances

Image
Photo courtesy of www.sonyholland.com All Rights Reserved

Visit www.sonyholland.com for more detailed information.





August 17
MASSIMO'S: LOS ANGELES, CA
8p - 10p (guitar/vocal duo)

August 20
CAFE DIVINE: SAN FRANCISCO, CA
7p - 9p (guitar/vocal duo)

September 11
PORTFOLIO: LONG BEACH, CA
9p - 10p (guitar/vocal duo - all original material)

September 19
THE VENUE: FARGO, ND
7pm - Appearing in concert with the Jazz Arts Group Big Band. Sony will be singing standards from the Great American Songbook.

September 20
THE DAKOTA: MINNEAPOLIS, MN
7pm - Performing with a quartet of Minnesota's finest musicians at the Twin Cities premier jazz room. Sony's debut @ the Dakota!

Sutro Heights Park

Image
Sutro Heights Park is where the Pacific Ocean meets the San Francisco Bay. The twenty fourth mayor of San Francisco, Adolph Sutro owned about a tenth of the property in the city during the late 19th century. He built the famous Sutro Baths, Sutro Heights Park and The Cliff House. The above photo depicts the gazebo located within the park area.



Near the main entrance you will find the above photographed stone ram sculpture. The park hosts various stone statues to include the lions situated at the main entrance to the park located at 48th Avenue and Point Lobos.



Adolph Sutro built the park for his own pleasure. This was basically his backyard park. He enjoyed walking through the exotic trees and flower gardens while picnicking and exercising. The stone sculptures were his babies.



There rests in the park a cornucopia of tree and plant species as well as colorful flower beds and lush foliage. From within the confines of the park you can get an aerial view of the Cliff House, Ocean …

More Trees @ The Botanical Gardens

Image

Teatro Zinzanni

Image
Located along the Embarcadero in San Francisco this venue is a bit difficult to explain due to its uniqueness. It is an eclectic mixture of cabaret, circus, acrobatics and dinner show. The music is mostly cabaret type theatre music along with high wire acrobatics and pole maneuvers by the entertainers. This is all taking place while you’re having dinner. It’s fun and entertaining if you don’t mind this type of theatre while dining. If you are the type that just wants a nice dinner with some leisurely conversation, this is not for you. It’s also interactive in that the entertainers will at random pull diners up on stage to be a part of their act.The seating is good especially if you are seated along the walls in the booths. You will get a great view of the entire room by sitting there. The costumes are colorful, vivid and just really beautiful. Everyone including the waitstaff is very friend and accommodating.The food is good as well. I loved the black bean raviolis. The por…

Latin Fever

Some Latin fever from the San Jose Jazz Festival this past weekend. Enjoy!

The S's of Sex

The S's of Sex

Sensual
Sensations
Scald
Sweltering
Skin
Singeing
Sacred
Spaces

Slowly,

Sinfully,

Seductively.

Wordless Wednesday - Australian Grass Tree

Image
Photo taken at the Botanical Gardens in San Francisco.

Garden Bouquets

Image

High Society Nights with Jonathan Poretz @ Yoshi's San Francisco

Image
Read my interview with Jonathan Poretz on JazzWest.com


Photo courtesy of Yoshi's San Francisco

www.jonathanporetz.com

August 19, 2009Jonathan Poretz - vocals
Lee Bloom - piano
Jeff Neighbor - bass
Kent Bryson - drums 8pm show $12 advance / $16 at the doorInformation and Tickets

Squirrel Standoff

Image
I'm walking the paths at the gardens and decided to take a short cut up a stone walkway surrounded by dirt and fallen leaves. Without even looking I begin climbing the stone path when I see something move towards me. I look down to find a squirrel propped up standing before me about six inches away from my feet. He's glaring at me as if to say "okay move, you're blocking my way." I had my camera in my hand and immediately thought of my buddy Ratty over at the Everyday Adventurer blog.

I thought to myself what a great shot. He's looking right up at me and I'll be able to finally get a closeup of one of these critters. So, I slowly raise the camera to get a photo of him when in a split second he dodges his way between my feet and my camera caught him "leaving the scene." I guess he doesn't like his picture taken :)

Odds n Ends at The Gardens

Image
While walking the gardens I came across this dirt path through another pathway of tall trees. There were no flowers on these trees yet you can see the pathway through a Cabernet colored infusion of what looked like dust along the dirt. It was unusual yet beautiful.




I found this interesting. It tells a story and I love the colorful hues. I like the contrast and the fact that it is so unusual.




There are stumps and odd shaped stones and rock providing unusual decor all around the gardens of which I find wildly fascinating.

Wordless Wednesday - More From The Gardens

Image

Musing Seaside Canticles

Image
Musing Seaside Canticles

It is about solitude
In the wake
Of anchored foghorns
Over a voiceless pitch
Of baritone riptides.

Strumming undertows
Syncopate rhythmic currents
Fusioned in a clef
Of aqueous harmonies.

A soulful soliloquy
Of seaside stanzas.


Sony Holland in Concert This Sunday August 9th

Image
Sony Holland in Concert @ The San Jose Jazz Festival
August 9, San Jose Jazz Festival

Smith Dobson Stage, 6pm
w/Benny Watson, Jeff Buenz, Seward McCain & David Rokeach
www.sonyholland.com

Redwood Trails at The Botanical Gardens

Image
I have been to the Botanical Gardens three times this past week including a plant fair and show yesterday. I can never get enough. While there a few days ago I decided to absorb the redwood trails. I was so invigorated, refreshed and inspired by the trails that I did not want to leave. I was there during the week when it is virtually quiet. Being there late in the afternoon, thoughts ran through my mind like a waterfall. I began thinking "what if I just hide somewhere, which would be very easy to do and spend the night under these redwoods." I just wanted to experience waking up in the morning under these gorgeous trees. If the weather hadn't been foggy, overcast and misty I would have done just that.

These photos were taken on three different visits this past week. I find new and interesting paths and surroundings each time I visit. More from the gardens in the next few days so check back often.