Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Artesian Springs

Artesian Springs is a hideaway resort east of Newton Texas. The area offers exciting white beaches in the middle of pine forests. It is a favorite camping area.

--steve buser

Monday, October 29, 2007

Steamy sunset

Low hanging clouds above, a retiring sun, a clear horizon and steam billowing from a plant combine for this effect. I caught this shot south of Lafayette, LA the other night as I was driving home from a trade show. A little bit different twist on the sunset genre. Seems to me the sun doesn't just use clouds to do his aerial art works. Like any good artist he likes to experiment with different media.

--steve buser

Sunday, October 28, 2007

I am not talking to you

Are bird tempermental? I mean do they do things like not talking to each other for several days? Or is that just a human thing. I know I have seen some pretty human things from them.

I remember a cat I had back in college. She would lay in the front yard and the mocking birds would come and perch on branches near her. She would pretend not to notice.

Then the game would be for the birds to swoop down and try to rattle her. She would continue to feign inattention -- it was a game of chicken. More and more daring, the birds would sweep closer on their strafing runs toward her. Time after time, she would look away, totally unbothered.

Then on one bombing run, a bird would come into her air space and she would spring suddenly to life and swipe at them. She would occasionally knock them out of the air. A few times she even grabbed one in mid flight -- it was after one of these episodes that I would get a gift.

But the pair of pigeons in the photo today seem to be having just an ordinary lover's spat. "I'm not talking to you, and I'm not telling you why."

--steve buser

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Gentlemanly attire

Grandson Sullivan shows how the gentlemen port themselves at a New Orleans wedding reception. In the background, the jazz and blues band are red hot.

-- steve buser

Friday, October 26, 2007

Wall-waved flag

Jasper, Texas has a series of murals on several of its downtown businesses. If you'e in the area, it's worth a swing by and a drive through the downtown area.

-- steve buser

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Bubbling baby

Our granddaughter Sofie tries to understand what makes the ground bubble up at a water play ground at the zoo in Houston. This picture was taken by her proud mom, and my daughter, Vicky Lynn.

--steve buser

Water pad

The Tony Houseman State Park and Blue Elbow Swamp greet you as you come into Texas on the Interstate 10 from Lousiana. It's unfortunate, that without a boat, you can see much of the beauty. Even the boundaries of the park and wildlife management area are not marked off.

But with a good guide, the park opens its soul to you, as you see in this shot. Canals lead you to old logging sites and drilling areas. How about Swamp and River tours in Orange. I totally enjoyed my time with them --

-- steve buser

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

I'm in high cotton

I'm in high cotton. You don't hear that saying so much any more. I always liked it though. It always had a sense real good feelings about life. I'm not sure there are good substitutes. High cotton -- an overwhelming sense that life is going your way.

I caught this picture coming back from Alexandria a few weeks back -- decided to take the back way. Glad I did. I was in high cotton.

--steve buser

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Blue Jelly

If the blue seems to jump off the screen here, I can assure you it was even bluer in real life. The jellyfish were a big hit with our grandkids on this visit to the Aquarium in Houston. Guess they never even imagined that something like this can exit. Of course, there we lots of tanks and lots of wide eyes. The sharks sure kept them quiet.

Where was this? Here.

-- steve buser

Monday, October 22, 2007

Atlanta and the leadership question

This was Atlanta a night from my hotel room a couple years ago. I was there for a leadership conference. I took a lot away from it. I did, however, leave with a bigger question than I can with.

Every community needs leaeders. There is big interest in learning how to develop leaders. At the conference, and other meetings I have been to, there was a strong assertion that enthusiasm is a hallmark of a leader. In fact, many believe that it is a "sine qua non" of being a leader -- without this, despite all your other leadership skills, you can't be an effective leader.

My question -- how do you train a leader to be enthusiastic? Is enthusiasm a skill? Can it be trained?

--steve buser

Sunday, October 21, 2007

The fence walker

This fence walker was one of my favorite photo subjects in the backyard of our last house. He and I would spend quite a lot of time together . It was a strained freindship -- he was always ready to bolt if I did anything he considered threatening. But some times he would let me get close enough for a good shot. Sometimes, like this, he thought he was more invisible that he would. Any tree was to him a cloak of invisibility.

-- steve buser

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Tools of the trade

Every trade has its own unique tool box. Lawyers have their writs and suits. Journalism have their style books and note books. Dentists have their drills and filling tools. This toolbox of ropes is from a shrimp boat down in Sabine Pass back in 2004. There is a whole fleet of shrimp boats which sail from there -- ice houses, docks, repair yards, all support that effort. I haven't been down there this year, but I suspect that things are mostly back from Hurricane Rita (and the smaller hurricane this year), but there are probably lingering scars.

Sabine Pass is a about 25 miles south of Beaumont Texas. It is the where the Sabine and Neches Rivers (they're one river at that point) empty into the Gulf. The waterway there is a busy place with repair yards for offshore oil rigs and two new LNG terminals under construction. The river there also brings in ships to the refineries and petrochemical plants in the area and the area's three ports.

Where is this? -- Here

--steve buser

Friday, October 19, 2007


Our grandson, Sullivan, holds as he careens down the steepest of mountains, made from a piece of siding and a couple of bricks in our backyard. Such daring.

--steve buser

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Going Home

When the sun sets early in the winter, going home can be a darkening experience. This shot is the Laurel Street overpass (over the I-10) in Beaumont, Texas.

-- steve buser

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Backyard sunset

This was my first sunset shot with a digital camera. Back in 2003, in Beaumont, I was out in the backyard barbecuing when the sky just exploded with color. I ran inside and was able to capture it just before the sun got tired of spray painting the undersides of the clouds.

Where is this? Here

--steve buser

Monday, October 15, 2007

Water Wow!

My granddaughter, Sophie, is fascinated by sea creatures at the Houston Aquarium. We took her and her brother there a few weeks back. The pair were capitvated by the colorful display and things that go swim in the night.

--steve buser

Cozumel calls.

A skiff off of Cozumel's coast sure did bekon me when were down there last year on a cruise that stopped at the four locations on the Yucatan Peninsula. The azure blue water just pulled the cares right out of you.

I think the boat has my name on it.

Where is this? Here.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

On the seas again (I just can wait to get on the seas again)

Okay, the day in Cozumel is over. Don't feel sorry though, it's back to the ship for a good meal and fun time as our Norwegian Lines ship sails further south through the night to the bottom of the Yucatan Peninsula to Quatemala.

This is from a trip we took last year about this time. It's only when you are on the dock that you get a true feeling for how big these ships are.

So what did we do during that day? We rented motor scooters and drove around the outside of the island to the other side -- the scenery was pure eye-candy.

Where is this? Here

Anchors aweigh..

--steve buser

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Into the misty

I had to play with the photo of this boat quite a bit, because it was a lot foggier than this photo suggest. The scene is the harbor of Victoria Island, just off the coast of Seattle. It's a fun ride out their by ferry and the town and the island is quite quaint. Unfortunately, we got there right at the end of the good season for seeing things.

Where is this? Here

Friday, October 12, 2007

Oh! the web we weave...

This guy was blocking my path as I went down to the water to get a shot. I guess he was mad because his spider web was getting all messed up. The scene is White's Park -- the Chamber's County Park, just off the I-10 about 40 miles west of Houston. Turtle Bayou flows along the back of the park.

Where is this? Here

--steve buser

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Clouds don't sleep

On a nearly cloudless day, the clouds have escaped onto the dark glass of this building in Beaumont, TX.

Where is this? Here
--steve buser

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Arboreal art vs kids climbing land

Through the workings of storms and millions of little happy feet, the trees near the lagoon in City Park have been formed into very climbable works of art. The branches hang low enough that even the smallest of munchkins can climb aboard and pretend to be aerial arborists. But the tops of the tree, seem to want to distance themselves from all that and use their twisted limbs to wave Spanish Moss art at benched parents.

--steve buser

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Sun bathing.

Thousands of flower enjoy the soft sunlight bath at the Timberline Nursery near Woodville, TX.

The nursery's indoor growing cycle allows year round output for retail nurseries all around Texas.

--steve buser

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Waterfall -- concentration, struggle, peace

Calm, peaceful, struggle. I captured this image at a waterfall up in Washington State on a trip we took to Seattle a few years back. I keep it framed. It captures a message for me of concentration no matter what is crashing down around you. And enjoying the struggle because that is what it is all about.

--steve buser

Lava lodge

This view is inside the Vistor's Center at Mount St. Helens in Washington State. We were there a view years ago. From the center to the ridge of the volcano is quite a hike. It was late when we got there, so we didn't take it.

If you were around in 1980 when the mountain erupted, you'll never forget it.

Here's the park web site.
And check out this St. Helen VolcanoCam -- (Make sure it's day there -- the camera is black at night).
You will also want to check out the USGS site on the volcano which has been erupting now for three years -- spewing out lava the size of a small pickup truck every 3 seconds.

--steve buser

A dry kind of wet

This photo is from the Bolivar Peninsula -- just across the bay from Galveston, TX. I had stopped the car to shoot a picture of birds across the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. When I looked down I saw this. There had been an extended drought that had crackled the bottom of the ditch. Then a sudden rain filled it with water. Result -- crackled bottom, wet on top.

Where is this? Here.

--steve buser

Friday, October 5, 2007

Acting tips

I just couldn't help but offer Whoopi Goldberg some acting tip when we were in Las Vegas back in 2004. She seemed to take them well -- but somewhat waxy-eyed. For that matter, she seemed to totally wax on too much for my tastes.

Enough with the spoof. This is her life-like wax statue outside the wax museum there. When you want to take a picture, you can just stand there like normal firing squad shot, or, as I have done here, have a little fun with the pose. Sorry about the quality of the photo -- we had a 3 megapixel camera back then, and thought we were in heaven.

By the way, I'd like to tell you the actual advice I gave to Whoopi, but you know, what happens in Vegas stays.......

Where is this? Here
--steve buser

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Scavenger hunt

This is on the ferry from Crystal Beach to Galveston. The birds are following the boat, hoping someone will throw them something. All you have to do is raise your empty hand and they will zoom in.

-- steve buser

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Morning crossing

This is the railroad bridge over the Neches River in Beaumont. I've been told it has 50 trains a day crossing it. Which makes me wonder when, if ever, they have the time to lift it up to let boats pass below it.

--steve buser

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

River life

This scene is from Guatemala -- we took a cruise there last year and took an excursion up the river. What captured my attention is the houses right on the river. The people really lived off the river. I guess they knew how to get away when the floods came.

--steve buser