Saturday, September 24, 2011

October in the Cemeteries

 As you likely know, I love going to cemeteries, and spending hours there photographing the stones, monuments and other testaments we as humans leave behind to remember our lives and those whom we've loved. 

And there's no better time than October to photograph a cemetery. Which is why I have decided to visit one unique, upstate New York cemetery a week and document what I find, see and photograph here on the Floor. 

I have some interesting destinations ahead of me, some I've never been to-- and legends I've always wanted to check out. More than one of these cemeteries have been reportedly haunted--by many different people, over a great number of years. I plan on making my visits each weekend, and writing up the post on Saturday-Sunday. Fall is here, and I cannot wait to share the orange falling cooling dim harvest nights among the stones. 

Until then, I leave you with a brief video I took at Forest Lawn in July, of a small stone, circa 1800's, which caught my eye. 

Monday, September 19, 2011

Another first.

 My first pumpkin of the season. Imagining, before the first day of autumn this Friday, what I could carve on its face, what decorations will go up soon around its spot on the porch. Yet again this year, I have no pumpkins of my own (ones that I have grown.) The garden was going so well, so strong, until I was away for three days, when they just weren't watered the same, and about a month later I believe they became the victim of a fungus, and the plants never yielded any fruit.

 I will try again, more determined, next year. But until then, I am more than content imagining how I can carve this beauty. 

First pumpkin, 2011

Friday, September 16, 2011

Fall comes to Forest Lawn Cemetery

 This past weekend, I visited Forest Lawn again. Unlike trips of the past, where my intentions consisted only of wandering the cemetery, walking among the stones and finding new monuments and areas to photograph, this visit had a more specific purpose.

 I was looking for my great-grandparents' grave. My mother mentioned this to me the week earlier, and I was, of course, absolutely interested on where these relatives of mine were in the great cemetery. I've visited Forest Lawn so many times, but I'd never gone with the intention of finding a specific grave site.

 And so I set out on Saturday afternoon with my partner. The people at the office were extremely helpful, looking the names up on what appeared to be a DOS based system, and then going to a very large, very old, very heavy and very informative bound book of maps of the cemetery's different sections. I did not know what to expect, or guess where they could be. The woman at the desk gave me directions on the larger map of the cemetery to the section they were in, and a blown up guide of the section, with varying, possibly larger stones and monuments marked, in the hope I could use them to find my way to where my grandparents were.

 On our way I came across some interesting items of note. Autumn had begun to shine in the cemetery. Early fallen leaves crowded some of the roadways, and these gorgeous few leaves had begun to burn a bright orange red near section D, where my relatives were.

 I hadn't expected it to take long, but it began to take longer than I felt it should have. I took about 10 minutes to realize I was looking at the section map from the wrong angle, and once figured out, another ten to realize where the graves marked on the map where. I made my way through what I thought was a direct line to where my relatives should be... And I found a tree. A large tree, which literally encompassed several stones. Markers laid in the ground, toward the base of the tree, were almost covered with age and earth, and two stones stood back, behind the leaves.

 Around the tree, several stones I had to feel to read, as time had worn so much of the inscriptions away, appeared to have circa 1800 dates, and I began to wonder if my great-grandparents were among these older, nameless graves.

I was walking to the front of the section when I spotted their names, and found them.  By their own tree, in this older section of the cemetery, with decidedly unique designs and structures to their stones. A rough, well preserved, coral-like boarder lines their stones, and I have to say I've never quite seen something like that before. Their urn had a wildly strong weed growing out of it, and at the base, had a green plant which easily may have been planted when the stones were made. I intend to go back and clean up the urn a bit, perhaps put a new, fall-hearty plant in there. I snapped dozens of photos of my great-grandparents stones, and also of the surrounding area. I'm always fascinated that there are so many areas of the cemetery I haven't been in, and the unique beauty that lies within.

 You may view my photo album of the trip here.

Forest Lawn, 09-10-11 (Start of Fall, Trietleys)

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Full Harvest Moon 2011

  And so it begins. Nature's way of ushering in the harvest, the Full Harvest Moon (seen here), is peaking. Best  seen in the Northern Hemisphere, what distinguishes the harvest's full moon is that it's moon typically rises about 25-30 minutes later each night, as opposed to the usual 50 minutes later. The moon, appearing in the lower southeastern sky, was given its name when farmers used the moon's light to continue gathering their harvested crops after sunset.

 These photos are from my front yard, and taken on my iPhone, and I wish they could have been of better quality. But I think they show, nonetheless, the position, height and fullness of this first full moon of the harvest.

 And here, in my local supermarket, the very first signs of the harvest for sale. I believe it goes without saying that I love this time of year, and welcome autumn, the harvest and the fall of the changing leaves back with open arms.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Big Lots? Really?

Also, I took this photo well over a week ago, and have been meaning to post it.