But does he have a license?

September 29, 2006


Seen in the parking lot of my local supermarket a couple of days ago.


Beware of the … bleagle

September 27, 2006

Marie McC posted a closeup of this strange creature last week on Alexandria Daily Photo. Since we both shot pictures of him at the same time, I’m sure she won’t mind if I post one too. Here he is on a column, guarding his owners’ house.

He’s a chimera—a mythical beast made up of parts of several animals. This one seems to have bat’s wings, a lion’s head and body, and eagle‘s talons. I guess that makes him a bleagle. I’m glad he’s on a sturdy leash.

The original Chimaera was a fire-breathing monster, part lion, part goat, and part serpent. Bellerophon killed it, mounted on the winged horse Pegasus, which he tamed for the purpose. There’s a famous statue: The Chimaera of Arezzo. Photographs of a replica of the statue can be found here.

Studious gentleman

September 26, 2006


This shot is for Elisabeth, who likes statues she can interact with. If Elisabeth finds that Kermit isn’t the greatest conversationalist, maybe she’d prefer to sit next to this colonial gentleman (whoever he is). But unless she’s friends with the owners of this private house in Alexandria, She’ll have to content herself with looking at him through the railings, as I did.

Autumn colors

September 25, 2006


The leaves haven’t started to turn yet in the Washington area (or at least, the ones I see from my balcony haven’t), but these hand-made bags on sale at the Alexandria market, give a foretaste of Fall colors.

Sudden in a shaft of sunlight*

September 24, 2006


I was sitting outside a service station on Friday, on the only bit of curb that wasn’t oilstained, waiting for my car to go through Virginia state inspection and idly watching a cop pulling over hapless speeders, when the sun came out and lit up this tree.

*”Sudden in a shaft of sunlight
Even while the dust moves
There rises the hidden laughter
Of children in the foliage
Quick now, here, now, always—
Ridiculous the waste sad time
Stretching before and after.”
T.S. Eliot The Four Quartets: Burnt Norton

Upside down umbrellas

September 21, 2006


Upside-down umbrellas add a colorful note under the canopy of this flower shop.

Brick sidewalk

September 20, 2006


This narrow bricked sidewalk could be a little country village, but it’s Old Town, Alexandria, just a couple of miles from Reagan National Airport. By the way, charming as those bricks are, they’re uneven and it’s very easy to turn your ankle.