staycation 2011

College Prowler, the website that provides crowdsource ratings of colleges and universities by important factors like campus dining, academics, and the guys who go there, recently also ranks the schools for “weather.” (Really, we’d call that “climate,” wouldn’t we?) Of the five schools rated as A+, three are here in San Diego.

Keeping that in mind, when I was recently trying to decide where I might want to go on a short little summer vacation, San Diego won out. Really, when Newark recently hit 108, D.C., D.C. struck 105 and Dallas roasted at 100 or more for three weeks solid, it was hard to think about going anywhere else, especially now in the hot breath of summer.

Monarch butterfly on ginger

So home it was. Long weekends in the garden…monarrch butterflies…

The long weekends were an excuse to get to the beach and get my feet wet. Pathetic that I haven’t done this in over two years.

The extra days were also an excuse to go for a short visit to Torrey Pines State Preserve, where lots was still in bloom even though it’s high summer and there’s been no significant rain for several months:

The new cat, hiding in the cables behind the electronics...

And we adopted a new cat. She’s closer to feral than being a lap cat, but we’re hoping that she’ll at least not feel the need to hide behind the furniture while humans are around.

James SOE NYUN. Yellowstone Lake Hotel, Yellowstone National Park, 2008. Digital pigment print, 16x19.75 inches.

And last, I had the chance to participate in some art stuff. I’m in the current 20th Juried Exhibition at the La Jolla Athenaeum. I was really surprised and honored that I was awarded first prize by the local big art name jurrors, Kathryn Kanjo of the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, and Joseph Bellows of the photo gallery that bears his name. Woohoo!

This is one of three images in the show, works from the Yellowstone region that channel photographers from the nineteenth century. If you’re on vacation here in town, stop by. The show is up through September 3.

Enjoy what’s left of the summer!

9 thoughts on “staycation 2011”

  1. Congratulations. That photo does look like it was taken a hundred years ago. Torrey Pines Reserve was my favorite place down there when I was a student.

  2. Congratulations seem in order on many fronts: the much-deserved recognition for your art, the new feline family member and the perfect vacation venue.

  3. It sounds like a good summer to me–rediscovering the beach, a new kitty, and exhibition fame. your photo is beautiful, the rows of columns and trees in particular. a round of nepeta faassenii for all!

  4. Congratulations on your first place–it is well deserved. A beautiful photo.

    I liked the videos very much. Standing and watching the waves on your feet, I used to do that ever summer. The ocean is 7 miles away, but seems like another universe these days.

  5. Congratulations James, what fabulous news on the prize! I love the image you show, such a great feel of being an image from far, far further back than 2008. As to the paddling, I am torn between wanting to say “Two years? Get your priorities sorted!” because nothing quite beats that feeling of the sea tugging at your feet, and gradually sinking into the sand, and saying “Thank you” because that is probably the closest I will get to paddling in the sea this year.

  6. Wow – beautiful photo of the Yellowstone Lake Hotel! Never been to Yellowstone before, but it’s on my list of must-see destinations. As for Torrey Pines SP, haven’t been there in years, so it was really cool to see your videos of the tides and blooms (really surprised that there are still blooms this time of year). It’s not all that far from us, so we really should trek out that way again soon. Have you named your new kitty yet? She looks so adorable in her furtive, feline pose!

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