Ridiculous, I know.  But I couldn’t resist.  When I saw this I had to have a shot of it.  Even on a bad day, he makes me laugh.  I find it interesting the way his cigar, hat, glasses, and boots contrast the rest of him and his “lounge chair”.

Old man at peace with his life

Old man at peace with his life

But then I think, he looks so pleased with his situation.   Comfortable, rested, settled.  In no hurry to get anywhere, do anything.  Harmless.

In contrast with the way the world looks to me today.  Sometimes the smile he brings to me is accompanied by a tear.

Click on the link and see what other’s have to say about “contrast” @ where’s my backpack.  Thanks for hosting Ailsa.

And thanks to all of you for stopping by.





The travel theme this week on Ailsa’s blog is benches.  I found a few photos that I thought fit the bill, but not many.  I drove around today hoping to find one or two more.  You would think that a person could find an interesting bench or two driving around a few city blocks by the beach, but NO!  I saw benches to rest on while waiting for NJ Transit 501 to take you to the casinos, and benches in gardens that are not meant for sitting, but for decorating. (just not very decorative in my opinion)  Sadly, I found nothing like the beauties I’ve seen on some of the other blogs that have joined in on this interesting challenge.  The price of gas nagged me into heading back home with nothing but a bag or two of groceries that I stopped to pick up along the way.  I thought, while I was out:  spinach, salmon, a few green grapes …

Anyway, there aren’t many shots here, but they’re slightly better than the bus stop benches I saw today.  Enjoy.

A place to rest while waiting for a table - Adelphi Diner, Deptford NJ

A place to rest while waiting for a table – Adelphi Diner, Deptford NJ

Outside a shop in Smithville Village, NJ

Outside a shop in Smithville Village, NJ

Ouside same shop, Smithville Village, NJ

Ouside same shop, Smithville Village, NJ

Outside Perkins Arts Center, Collingswood, NJ

Outside Perkins Arts Center, Collingswood, NJ

I will be on the lookout for more benches, just in case.  In the meantime, click on the photo below to get to Ailsa‘s blog – wheresmybackpack for more on the theme.

Bench and tree - after a storm

Bench and tree – after a storm

Thanks for stopping by and resting here at my site.  I appreciate the visits and would love to have you drop back.


Ain’t no mountain high enough…

Oooooooh yes there is!  Mount Washington in New Hampshire is the highest peak in the Northeastern US, looming at 6,288 ft.  (1,917 m) and back in the day, I climbed up that baby.  Never having done anything like that before, and at a friend’s suggestion, I packed some things and joined him and his 76 year old mom for the trek of my lifetime!  Little did I know what I was getting myself into.  I won’t bore you with the details but suffice it to say, half way up I was totally incapable of looking down.  Vertigo!  Who knew?  But if you know nothing else about me, know this.  I AM NOT quitter.  So without ever looking back, I made it to the top of that mother of a mountain, where I literally kissed the ground before pulling myself up over the edge and onto my wobbly legs.


My friend was an experienced climber, so I felt (reasonably) safe.  His 76 year old mom, by the way, was ahead of me every step of the way.  And I DID take a vehicle to the bottom.  Hey! One way is better than no way.

Make click on her link your way over to Ailsa’s at Where’s My Backpack for more on mountains.  Thanks Ailsa. And thanks to all of you for stopping by.


Currently, I am sans computer. ANNOYING! But there’s a good reason.

Anyway, this leaves me with no photos except what’s on my iPhone and iPad, so this will be a bit of a challenge for me for a while. But hey! That’s what I’m working on – challenges mostly – so I’m holding true to my mission.

Ailsa has thrown out the “gaudy” gauntlet so here’s my find.

Home Goods, if you know the place, has a plethora of fun furniture, a myriad of mirrors, and some really loud, flashy, showy, gaudy lamps.

Feast your eyes an this dazzler!


Gaudy, but in a funky kind of nice way, wouldn’t ya say.

For a good look at some gaudy, click on the lamp and it will take you to Ailsa’s blog @ Where’s my backpack.

(I’m having issues figuring out how to link on my iPad. In case I’m failing miserably, I wouldn’t want you to miss a trip to Ailsa’s blog, so here’s the URL: )


Groundhog’s Shadow

Shadow of Your Smile

Cast a Shadow

Valley of the Shadow of Death

Me and My Shadow


Me and My Shadow (and a lone flower) at Smithville Village, NJ

When we see the shadow on our images, are we seeing the time 11 minutes ago on Mars? Or are we seeing the time on Mars as observed from Earth now?  It’s like time travel problems in science fiction. When is now; when was then? ~ Bill Nye

Only the Shadow Knows!

What?!?!?!?  OK.  I need to read and reread that a few times.

While I’m doing that, why don’t you stop over at Ailsa’s @ wheresmybackpack to see other shadows.  Click on her link, and quit following me!  Get it? Shadow?  Follow? Oooooooooh!

And NOOOOOO!  Don’t really quit following me!   🙂


Overlooking the Marina in Atlantic City, boasting a magnificent view of the city, is the Chart House Restaurant.  I haven’t had the pleasure of dining there, so I don’t have a photo of the exquisite view they’re bragging about, but I did travel the glass-enclosed walkway right up to their front entrance and enjoyed a different view.  If you look UP, here’s what you see.




Sometimes, you just have to look at things differently.  I’m UP for that!  

Thanks to Ailsa for hosting this posting 🙂  You can see more at her site, wheresmybackpack, by just clicking her link.

To all who stop by to like, comment, or just to browse, my appreciation. 🙂


Ailsa @ wheresmybackpack suggested the word “new” for this week’s challenge.  I immediately thought of the new year, because, well, you know.  But then I looked at Ailsa’s photo and I realized the word new could mean so many things – just like the new year can bring so many new things.  New growth, new friends, new job, new diet, new resolutions, new attitude, new lots of things.  So I looked through my photos and decided to try something new – new old.  Confused.  Well you won’t be for long.  If you know anything about me, you know I’m all about peace signs and The Beatles, tie-dying and denim, funky beads and VW’s.  And ok, sometimes living in the past. So when my son spotted this, he thought of me.  He knows his mom :-).

This is my newest post.  Old, restored, rejuvenated, retro, NEW.    PEACE and HAPPY “NEW” YEAR!

vw bus

Scoot on over to Ailsa’s @ wheresmybackpack for more groovy ‘new’ posts.


mall tree

During this festive of all occasions, two neighbors have a friendly rivalry concerning Christmas decor and who can display more.  Each year, for as long as I can remember, they have added to the light display on their lawns, one trying to outdo the other.  It’s all in fun, but I can’t help thinking “what about the electric bill!”  I suppose the priority here is fun, and bringing joy to the hundreds of families, especially the children, that drive down this brightly lit street each December.  It’s my understanding they start working on their displays in October!  I can’t even THINK about Christmas while I’m handing out Halloween candy, but hey!  To each his own.

To all of you, from all of us, have a very festive holiday.  Enjoy the lights!

Stop by Ailsa’s site by clicking here and see more Festivus for the Rest-of-Us!


While wading through some photos to submit to Ailsa‘s Liquid Challenge, I found a few shots that I thought might apply.

But here’s the deal.  A challenge within a challenge.  The photo below was taken at the Cape May Zoo.  I didn’t notice it until my step-son brought it to my attention, but their is a face of sorts in the falls.  Clue:  Look at the top left and refer to the tequila bottle in the gallery.  Do you see it?  Once you do, you won’t be able to look at the falls without seeing it.  There was nothing photoshopped – something I can’t afford 🙂 and no editing was done.  Kind of freaky, really.  Good luck.

For more liquid – libation or otherwise – stop by Ailsa‘s site.

TRAVEL THEME: BRIGHT and Super Storm Sandy

This week Ailsa, at wheresmybackpack, offered up a “bright” challenge.  As I am always and forever the procrastinator, bloggers left and right were posting some fabulous takes on the theme and in doing so, took a few of my ideas.  Well, they didn’t exactly take anything.  They more like beat me to the punch.  These ideas were formulating in my head (and sitting on my hard drive) but, as always, good ol’ me – a day late and a dollar short – or several dollars to allow for inflation.  Alas (does anyone use that word, really?) I am forced to stray a little from what Ailsa probably had in mind, but here it goes.

Many, if not all of you by now, must have heard about the devastation that bore down on the east coast last week.  Her name was Sandy, and she was wicked.  The losses are too numerous to mention.  Monetary calculations reach into the millions.  Lives were turned inside out and memories were wiped away with the force of the horrific rain and wind that blasted it’s way into so many lives.

Jeff and I were one of the more fortunate.

We drove to our place in Brigantine when we were finally allowed to cross over the bridge.  There isn’t much I can say.  The pictures speak for themselves.

The north end of the beach was pounded by waves that rushed over the seawall to the right.  Everyone was working together to clean up and help out.

This is where there use to be a house.

All some people could do was stack the mud and dirt, along with their possessions, out to the curb.

When we pulled up to our place, this is some of what we saw. 


Siding ripped from the house, pieces of fence torn from their frames, a broken screen, what use to be our mailbox (someone said a unmanned boat floated down our street and crashed into it. OK?) a refrigerator flipped on its side, and a cracked driveway.

We spent the day putting the contents of our garage out to the curb:  the flipped frig, a few beach chairs, our grill, our bikes :-(, tons of tools, and a bunch of other stuff.

We were lucky.

Channel 6 news (ABC) partnered with the American Red Cross to raise over 17 million dollars  to help the people devastated by Hurricane Sandy.  If you haven’t given, 10 bucks will do the trick.  Ten bucks times all of you.  Wow! 

Click here to donate to the American Red Cross and help those people in need.  I did.  It just takes a minute. It will put a “bright”, beautiful smile on your face and give you a feeling of extreme satisfaction  :-).

There’s always a positive side – a “bright” side, if you will.

We finally cleaned out our garage!

Please pass the link to my blog to your friends.  There are so many people that can use your help. And thanks, Ailsa, for the opportunity to make a difference.