After the Solstice

_C1_9687 smallAt the edge of Fayetteville, pavement becomes gravel and neighborhoods become farms quickly. Just a couple of miles is enough to convince me I’m in the middle of nowhere._C1_9644 smallToday, the day after the solstice, was very gray. I headed out near Lake Wilson, an old reservoir just outside of town that mirrored the flat gray sky. I had been out there a few weeks ago for a story on a local group trying to keep clean the lake and the river flowing from it.

Today it was cold — below freezing. A few tiny flurries blew in my face. I should’ve brought a hat. Despite the cold, however, water still flowed on all sides. Creeks and streams wove under and around the road every few yards. Despite the gray, color still showed.

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_C1_9699 smallHere it was very quiet, the kind of quiet where you can hear an approaching car a mile out, and there were only a handful of those. As I walked a rooster called out insistently. A red-tailed hawk swooped silently over a field. The wind picked up. I really should’ve brought a hat.

_C1_9648 smallAfter a good hour’s walk I got to my goal:

_C1_9673 smallMaybe it’s not a whole lot to look at, but I’d wanted to get a photo of this basketball hoop since I first drove by a month ago. To me it seemed to hold just a little something of life here, where instead of playing basketball in front of the garage door, they play it in front of the hay bale shed. Maybe I’m too sentimental.

_C1_9669 smallThis boat was easily worth the trip, though. I don’t know if I’ll ever see such a thing again.

It was around this time that I turned back around and met Lisa, a woman who looked to be in her 50s and wore brass-colored glasses with small lenses and a woven, brown wool hat with a matching vest. She said hi and that she lived nearby — and that I should get a hat. I should’ve gotten her picture.

_C1_9694 smallFurther down the road I saw a black lab standing outside a house’s front door. As I kept walking I heard a soft padding behind me and turned around. The lab, now motionless, looked at me without a sound. I kept walking. I turned around again. Sure enough the lab was still there, sniffing where I’d walked. He followed for a few minutes before turning around and running back.

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I love dogs. And I really do plan on getting more people into these pictures, I swear. I’ve put up a lot of introverted photography lately, to be blunt. Maybe I’m always tired of people by the weekend. But I hope these are OK to look at. Thanks for looking!

Dan

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