Monthly Archives: September 2015

Is this Pete the Cat?

Out & About

Remember the classic movie scene where a train or bus goes by and one of two things happens: (1) the person on the other side is no longer there, or (2) there’s now a person on the other side.

Well, recently I was out taking pictures and videos of trains. I was in a location I had never been before but where there’s lots of train action. The only reason I had never been there before is because it’s simply too difficult to get to.

I had been watching trains for 1½ hours and had decided to leave after the next train. Well, after the next train passed, this was on the other side of the tracks:

Cat by the railroad tracks

Cat by the railroad tracks

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I’m pretty sure (actually, 100% absolutely sure!) that the cat didn’t jump off the train as it went by but seeing it there reminded me of the beginner-reader book Pete The Cat’s Train Trip by James Dean.

After watching me watching her for about 15 seconds, she took off up the hillside, climbed over a wooden fence, and disappeared.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift for a special occasion?

Use code YLNNRX for a $40 discount on
Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America

Photographic Art logo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

The Boulevard in San Diego, California

Out & About

Many decades ago the main east-west thoroughfare to and from San Diego was El Cajon Boulevard. About twenty miles long at its peak before the Interstate system, it is a prime example of growth and development that was shaped by the automobile. About six miles of the middle section was obliterated when Interstate 8 was built in the early 1960s; there is a small section remaining in El Cajon. The western end, from Normal Street in San Diego to Spring Street in downtown La Mesa is about eleven miles long.

The remaining eleven miles of El Cajon Boulevard presents to the historian the site of the very first Jack in the Box restaurant built at 6270 El Cajon Boulevard in 1951. Jack in the Box gave us the first drive-through and the innovation of a two-way intercom to allow one car to place an order while another car was being served. Jack in the Box has its corporate headquarters here in San Diego.

Jack in the Box corporate headquarters in San Diego, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

At the other end of El Cajon Boulevard is the historic Lafayette Hotel, built in 1946 with an Olympic-sized swimming pool designed by Johnny Weismuller, winner of five Olympic gold medals and the actor who played Tarzan in twelve movies, arguably the best known of the many actors who played Tarzan on film and on television. The first guest when the hotel opened in 1946 was none other than the incomparable Bob Hope.

businesses along the boulevard (7) lafayette hotel stamp

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

In the latter part of the 20th century (in other words, when I came to San Diego in April 1993), El Cajon Boulevard was a hotspot for prostitution, both male and female.

El Cajon Boulevard also was the site of the El Cajon Boulevard Riot. Also known as the Drag Strip Riot, it was one of the first major youth riots of the 1960s.

The riot began during the evening of August 20, 1960, as an organized protest over the closing of Hourglass Field, an unused Navy airfield, to drag racing. Although drag racing had been organized by the San Diego Timing Association, a local group of hot rod clubs, it was unauthorized. Both the Navy and the police looked the other way because, at the time, Hourglass Field was the only off-street venue available for drag racing. On August 8, 1960, three (maybe four) bystanders were injured during a drag race, causing the Navy to shut down the airfield to drag racing.

Location of Drag Strip Riot in August 1960 in San Diego, CaliforniaAt the intersection of El Cajon Boulevard and Cherokee Street on the nights of August 20 and 21, an estimated 3,000 teenagers and adults blocked three blocks of El Cajon Boulevard and began holding impromptu drag races with just enough room for cars to race two-abreast down the street. When police arrived to disperse the crowd, many protesters fought back, showering officers with rocks and bottles.

Although I found lots of information about Hourglass Field, I found very little information about the riot itself. My research mind is in overdrive.

I’ll have to put it on my to-do list to take you on a tour of The Boulevard during daylight hours.

For the rest of this post, though, we’re going to take a darkness tour because there is a lot of nighttime fun on The Boulevard.

Here ya go:

img_1126 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1125 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1122 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1119 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1118 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1116 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1115 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1112 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1111 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1110 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1109 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1107 el cajon boulevard stamp img_1103 el cajon boulevard stamp

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift for a special occasion?

Use code YLNNRX for a $40 discount on
Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America

Photographic Art logo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Advice from a tree

Picture of the Moment

Moving is like archaeology in that you discover old things that were thought to be lost to history.

When Jim and I moved in May, I found many things that I thought were gone. One of them was a poster that I bought in 1976 at a forestry event. It’s all folded and crumpled but not to worry because all I have to do is take the thought and create something in Photoshop.

I’m creating a set of seven Photographic Art based on the poster, of which this is the first one:

stand tall and proud

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

For each succeeding artwork, the text being illustrated will be in dark blue with all other text in light gray.

The main reason why I am making these is because I have a commission to do so. My Client intends on hanging these on the walls of her new office.

Each of these is a Photoshop file, so I’ll be able to change anything that the Client wants changed. The brushed aluminum frame I used here is just for illustration purposes. My final work will not be digitally framed.

Contact me
 for unique, custom artwork
for your home or office,
or to give as a gift
to family, friends, or business associates.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray PhotosNeed a unique gift for a special occasion?

Use code YLNNRX for a $40 discount on
Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America

Photographic Art logo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Baby pelicans are so cute!

Snippets

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

snip-pet: a small piece of something

Snippets: mini blog posts

SNIPPET 1

I like reading the comment threads of online articles because they reveal the hatred, stupidity, and ignorance that seem to be so prevalent in society. I was reading a sports article yesterday on the web site for an arch-conservative newspaper serving an arch-conservative community and an arch-conservative university. After reading the article I scrolled down to the comments only to find this:

Rules of conduct

Should I admit that I found the comments essentially dull, boring, and uninteresting.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

SNIPPET #2

Sunset and a tall ship in San Diego, California

That’s the sunset from the Maritime Museum of San Diego on Friday, September 4. I had just come from the Parade of Sail which opened the Festival of Sail taking place this weekend. Many of us consider the Parade of Sail to be the unofficial start to San Diego’s “Fleet Week” in recognition of the military stationed and living in San Diego, mostly Navy and Marine. “Fleet Week” is a misnomer since it officially starts September 8 and ends October 4.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

SNIPPET #3

I liked this statement from author Anne Rice about Kim Davis:

“Whatever gave this woman the idea that any individual has the right to publicly and stubbornly disregard the rights of an entire group of Americans, based on her personal belief? And to think all of this is over secular marriage licenses! Not life and death. Not war and peace. But secular marriage licenses! What a colossal waste all this has been of the tax payer’s money and the court’s time.”

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

SNIPPET #4

Climate change seems to be bringing a lot more rain to San Diego. Along with the rain—July was the wettest July in recorded history here—has come some strange weather, like hail on March 1.

Rain and hail, though, mean clouds, something that usually is an all or none situation. However, we’re getting some really nice clouds which means really nice pictures, like this one:

img_1975 abandoned railroad tracks stamp

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

SNIPPET #5

The place where I go each year to watch the Parade of Sail has a lot of friendly pelicans, like these two:

img_5122 pelicans stamp

The little baby pelican in the middle is soooooooooo cute!

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift?
Marriage? Anniversary? Birthday? Other special event?
Photographic Art logo
Choose Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Fall, football, fleet week, festival of sail—It all starts today!

Out & About

The unofficial start of the Festival of Sail at the Maritime Museum of San Diego begins today with the Parade of Sail at 3:00 p.m. For most of us here, that means it’s also the unofficial start of Fall, football, and Fleet Week (a misnomer since the “week” lasts from September 8 to October 4).

The Parade of Sail features tall ships from around the world and is, for me, one of the best events occurring each year in San Diego.

Here’s a selection of tall ships, some making San Diego their home, others visiting during the year, and still others visiting specifically for the Festival of Sail:

Tall ships in San Diego for the Festival of Sail Tall Ship Parade at San Diego Festival of Sail Tall Ship Parade at San Diego Festival of Sail Tall Ship Parade at San Diego Festival of Sail Tall ship in San Diego Tall ship in San Diego Tall ship at the 2012 Festival of Sail, San Diego

The Californian, official tall ship of the State of California

The Californian, official tall ship of the State of California

Tall ship

Tall Ship Parade at San Diego Festival of Sail

Tall ship at the 2012 Festival of Sail, San Diego

Esmeralda

Sagres ship

Star of India

Master & CommanderPictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Most significant today is that the San Salvador, the recently completed full-size replica of the galleon that sailed into San Diego bay in 1542, will make its debut. While it is not expected to be under sail today, it will lead the Parade of Sail using its propellers, also known as “iron wind.”

San Salvador

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift for a special occasion?

Use code YLNNRX for a $40 discount on
Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America

Photographic Art logo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

The most southwestern point in the continental United States

Out & About

When the real estate bubble burst around 2008 and everyone decided to stay home on staycations, I decided to stay, too.

I set out to explore everything that San Diego County had to offer.

That was when I first discovered the most southwestern point in the continental United States.

It’s called Border Field State Park.

Border Field State Park in San Diego County, CaliforniaPictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Border Field State Park makes the local headlines quite often because it is the only place where U.S. and Mexican families that are separated by fences and walls can go say hello to each other…. But only during certain times, and when those times are announced, headlines are made!

Border Field State Park in San Diego County, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Road and safety conditions change frequently, and the vehicle gate is closed Monday through Friday. Other weird things…. Here is a great gateway web site to Border Field State Park.

On a recent trip to Border Field, I found a new fence. Looks like this (click on picture for a huger version):

Fence at Border Field State Park, Imperial Beach, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

The dohickeys hanging on the fence are mosaics created by schoolchildren throughout the area and feature wildlife that can be found at Border Field State Park. Here are some close-ups of the mosaics:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

There are a great number of horse rental businesses in the area, and I can highly recommend a horse ride to the beach where you can actually ride the horse ON the beach, the only place in San Diego County where you can do that.

Border Field State Park in San Diego County, California

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift for a special occasion?

Use code YLNNRX for a $40 discount on
Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America

Photographic Art logo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post

Shall we go to bed?

Picture of the Moment

Many decades ago when I was but a poor college student, at the end of each semester some friends and I would travel around town gathering up all the box springs and mattresses that graduating seniors were throwing away. We would then deliver them to the homeless shelters. We thought doing that served three purposes:

  1. Got rid of the visual blight that hits so many college communities at graduation time.
  2. Helped the homeless shelters because they could either set up the beds for use by the homeless or sell them to make money.
  3. It made us feel good.

Probably 90% of the beds were single beds, sometimes double beds, but rarely queen or king size. Those same 90% were in good condition; the only reason they were being disposed of was because the graduating senior had a job and was going to buy a much bigger bed, probably a queen or king size, figuring that, after four five six years of college, s/he had earned the privilege of buying and sleeping in a big, comfortable bed.

Memories came flooding back when I saw this bed abandoned in a college community near me:

img_0101 discarded bed ocean beach stamp

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

It was all wet from a day’s worth of rain (in San Diego?) so it wasn’t salvageable, but I thought it would make an awesome picture.

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

Need a unique gift for a special occasion?

Use code YLNNRX for a $40 discount on
Photographic Art by Russel Ray Photos at Fine Art America

Photographic Art logo

Pictures copyright 2012 Russel Ray Photos

I'm Zoey the Cool Cat, and I approve this post