In Which I Go Through a Car Wash

Or let me be more clear. I was a passenger in a car that went through a car wash.

So what, you might say, and you would be right. Cars are washed every day and people are in them when it happens. Yes. But when that person is me, who is afraid of being in a car wash, well, now we have a little story.

You might also say, why not just wait outside while your husband takes the car through, and I’d say, if you saw this car wash site, which holds not only the car wash building but another whole section including a whole lot of self-car-washing stations, vacuums, cars rushing here and there, and so on, you’d stay in the car, too. It’s just safer.

And last, you might say, you could wash the car at home. Yes, I could, but I’d just rather not. I already wash a whole lot of other things at home and I don’t want to add to the list. My husband prefers the car wash for the same reason and since he’s willing to drive through it, well…you get the idea.

What’s the point of all this? Well, today I decided to photo the terrifying experience and let you get the shivers along with me. Maybe facing my fear would lessen it. maybe some day I’d take the car to the car wash myself. No, that might be too much to ask. Let’s just take things one step at a time. So…

Here we  go.

The photojournalism slant of this trip through the car wash was a success for me, because I was so busy clicking pictures I did not think a lot about the feeling of being helplessly carried along a track soaped and scrubbed and rinsed and blow-dried. That’s good.

What the car thought about it, I do not know. She (Our car is a she and she is named Cara Mia) is beautifully clean now, though, and looks really nice.

All is well that ends well, right?


Look Up to the Sky

October is a time for beautiful skies in my area, the suburbs of Philadelphia, PA. Take a look at these photos.

October 11, red sky at morning – sunrise. Taken from my house, looking out into the back yard.

Glenside/Jenkintown, PA, October 16, taken as we were driving to the grocery, about 7:15 AM.

Another sunrise from my back yard. October 19.

A Good Omen And Things Starting Off Sunny

I got a text from a friend. Driving through Glenside, PA, our town, he went past our florist. Your name is the name-of-the-day at Penny’s, he told me.

I knew exactly he meant. So I hopped in the car and drove right over there.

And there it was.

I went right inside and announced myself. My name is Claudia, I said, and that’s all I had to say. I was escorted into the flower refrigerator and left to choose. I took my time – so much to look at,  and also, I love that cooled flower air smell, why not indulge?

I made my choice and stepped back out into the sunshine.

I brought my rose home and put it into a vase. And now I feel the first day of spring is mine! Thank you, David, for alerting me; Penny’s Flowers, for choosing my name; and first day of spring, for …being the first day of spring!

“And I Really Mean It…”

…said the aliens (?).

Seen on a sidewalk in Glenside, PA, on July 15. Write down that place and date so you’ll have a reference for when you read about the new people in town here!

Marks on sidewalk 7-15-16 small

You May Be Amazed and You May Not, But I Think You Might Laugh

I went to the dentist today. I park at the library and walk a few blocks over to the office. I had a very satisfying visit to the dentist, and I say visit, because I have gone to the same dental hygienist for years and we have an ongoing conversation we pick up every four months. We’ve been talking weddings for the last year, my son’s, and now her daughter’s. Plus, I did not have any problems with my teeth and now they are beautifully shiny and clean.

So, in a pleasant state of mind after my appointment, I was strolling back, quite slowly, to my car. It was a hot sunny day and I was taking my time, in a noticing mood. I looked at this building’s door…

Pope F small door 6-1-16 small

and I noticed a familiar face looking back at me. I had no idea Pope Francis was in Glenside; I thought he went back to work in Rome after being here in Philadelphia last September.

Pope F small 6-1-16 small

Look closely at the picture, near the bottom and directly under the Pope’s hand, and you can see my hand on the camera. My goodness, now I’ve included myself in this history-making moment.

I now am left to wonder at the assortment of covering-up items this homeowner has used to block sight into the house through the door – the Pope poster and what looks like a car windshield cover – and why not just get a curtain? This question is just the kind of thing I ponder as I walk along the street and see things.

Free Information Right Here

I’m not sure if I have shown this scene before. If I have, well, my memory is not so good, and I do have to say this location is a place I am quite fond of, so looking at it twice is not too many times, is it?

It’s the display window of a local pest-control business. It’s looked this way as long as I can remember, 24+ years. I still stop in front of it to take a look when I pass by. A museum in two small spaces. Plenty of bugs. I especially like the chewed-up items along the bottom of the case – bugs sure can do a lot of damage to the oddest things.

And if you want to identify a bug, drag him in here and get things straightened out.

I took these photos this past weekend at the art festival I participated in – two miles from home, Glenside, PA.

Not Just Your Hair, Either

I was doing some writing at Arcadia University, near my house, a couple of days ago. The school is on spring break and everything was very quiet.

In the bathroom I saw this sign. I liked it.

Hair 3-16 small

Passage of Time, In Person

If you look around, you can find markers of the passage of time everywhere – statues of famous people now dead, every kind of old building, the little kid who grew up next door and is now married. How about this one? I saw it today at the Glenside Library, Glenside, PA.

This wall runs along the library’s driveway up to the upper parking lot and holds back a section of earth behind it.

The library was built in 1968. So this wall has spent about 50 years in position, dealing with annual freeze-thaw cycles. It’s hanging on, but not without a cost. The wall has some splits – and not just in the joints, but right through the bricks. What do you think of that?

I’m inclined to admire this wall. It’s not giving in. But…

I’m admiring Mother Nature, too. She is patient and can wait.

Cracked brick wall GL library 1-16 small


This building, formerly a house, is now divided into apartments. It’s a common type of arrangement in my area. Something about the building has always attracted me, and I always take a look when I’m in the neighborhood – it’s next to my dentist’s office. I think interesting and nice people must live in it.

And now I feel sure they do. Why? Look to the right of the picture, the little structure in the yard…

Little library GL 1-16 #3 small

It’s a new location of the Little Free Library!

I’ve written about them before. There is one about a mile away, next to a florist shop; one in Lorimer Park by the ranger’s house; and one in Mondauk Park in Upper Dublin, near the main picnic structure. Now this new one here on Mt. Carmel Avenue in Glenside, PA. Hooray, and thank you. More books. More books! I love to see it. I’ll bring some volumes to put inside soon.

I also love the repurposed nature of the construction. Looks like a school desk, a cabinet or cupboard, and what about those license plates for the roof?

Magic Morning

I drove my husband to the train this morning, before seven o’clock. He had an early meeting.

The morning was mild, gray foggy, with a slight rain falling, and the sun was just coming up. As I came into the parking lot I noticed people looking at the sky and taking pictures. Here is what we saw – this breathtaking perfect rainbow all across the sky. The picture doesn’t do it justice.

People were smiling and looking to the sky. Everyone felt a bit of awe to see such a sight in our ordinary routine.

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