I have been terribly remiss in failing to keep this blog current. It is way past time to post something, and what better subject than our trip to Cancun, Mexico?
Under ordinary circumstances we probably wouldn’t have chosen Cancun as a destination, since we aren’t exactly beach people, but we had a timeshare week to use and decided it would be fun to discover what the Mayan Riviera is all about. We had a two-bedroom unit (plus kitchen and living room) and we wanted to share it. My sister and brother-in-law, Wanda and Mark Ostler, were kind enough to agree to go with us. Mark is a vacation planner extraordinaire—we really should have paid him to join us.
We stayed at the Royal Mayan resort, one of three Royal resorts in a row toward the south end of hotel row. We had a wonderful view from our balcony, looking out over one of the swimming pools and beyond to the ocean.
Last week ago Dawn and I flew to Salt Lake City to attend the wedding of my niece, Rebecca Ostler to Austin Copeland-Rynders. For the record, the wedding date was October 7, 2012. It was a fabulous event at a beautiful location. Picture taking was fun—all the Ostlers clean up quite nicely! Here are some photos I took at the wedding.
The wedding and reception were held at La Caille,
a picture-perfect venue for a such an affair (though with a tragic history).
In late August 1967, Dawn and I set off from Ventura, California, in our two-toned 1962 Plymouth Valiant, pulling a U-Haul trailer containing all our earthly possessions. Our destination was Cambridge, Massachusetts, where I was to enroll in Harvard Law School. We had been married slightly less than one year; I was 24 and Dawn was 20. Our emotions vacillated between anticipation, exhilaration and apprehension.
Dawn, our Valiant, and our U-Haul in front of a motel in Lodgepole, Nebraska,
where we spent a night on our trek east.
We just returned from a cruise along the Rhine River, from Basel to Amsterdam. It was our “big vacation” for the year and the following posts will be my photographic essay, which I’ll break down by ports of call. First stop: Basel, Switzerland.
Basel’s central square was a colorful place – a hub for the many tram routes throughout the city. The beautiful red building is the Rathaus (Town Hall).
Our neighbor and friend, Christina Reeve, has hosted wonderful pre-Christmas dinners for a number of years. Chris, a culinary artist, is in charge of the food for these parties, aided by her friend Anita and cousin Gigi, who likewise know their way around a kitchen. Recently, Chris’ daughter, Jessica, (aided by Anita), decided to turn the tables and surprise Chris with a birthday party. Jessica is a director of culinary services for Bon Appetit, a top-flight catering company. As you might guess, the feast was wonderful.
I took along my camera and shot photos of the food. But what I most enjoyed was shooting the people. (I know that last sentence sounds a bit odd.) I enjoy recording the character in the faces of friends we have known and appreciated for many years. Most of my photos are un-posed candids; I simply try to capture a familiar expression. Sometimes they turn out well; sometimes they don’t. Here are the ones I particularly liked from Christina’s party (in no particular order). My apologies to the folks whose photos I missed — there’s always next time.
Christina Reeve — Our frequent host and nearby neighbor for thirty-four years. Apparently she is only three years old (or maybe thirty, if each candle stands for ten years).
My brother-in-law, Brad Parrett, visited us this week. As Brad and I both enjoy photography, we decided to go on a photo shoot somewhere in Orange County. The places we chose were the South Coast Metro area and Old Town Orange. Although the day wasn’t perfect for photography (it was sunny, but hazy), we had a good time and I got some decent photos. Here are some that I liked.
My career as a practicing lawyer was spent with Latham & Watkins, now a global firm with some 2,000 lawyers. When I began with the firm in 1970, however, there were less than 50 — all in the Los Angeles office of the firm. In 1977 I transferred to the Orange County office of L&W, its first branch office. Several years later we moved into the top floors of Center Tower — a prime location adjacent to the O.C. Performing Arts Center and one block from one of the world’s great shopping centers, South Coast Plaza. The above photo is looking up at Center Tower, the tallest building in Orange County.
Today was my oldest grandson, Quade’s, birthday and we had a party at our home. Tyson had flown out from Chicago to visit for a few days, so I took the opportunity to give my garage photo studio a workout. It was the first time in a long time that we all found ourselves in one picture.
Last weekend Dawn and I attended the annual Mormon History Association Conference, held this year in St. George, Utah. I gave a presentation at the conference titled “Edson Barney: ‘The Oldest Man in the Church.’”
Edson was one of my great-great-grandfathers. A carpenter and millwright by profession, he lived in St. George from the 1860s until the turn of the century and helped build the tabernacle and the temple there. Between sessions of the conference I had a chance to shoot some photos of those buildings while Dawn patiently waited. The photographs turned out quite nice, so I thought I would share a few of them, interspersed with a few words about Edson. I hope this format doesn’t seem too disjointed.
The theme of the MHA Conference was “From Cotton to Cosmopolitan,” meant as a nod to the vast changes in Utah’s Dixie from the time of the first settlers in 1860 (sent by Brigham Young to establish a cotton industry) to the current era, where St. George has become a vibrantly growing city, a destination for snowbirds and a retirement Mecca. I took this shot of the St. George Temple at dusk, with setting sun illuminating the stream of a 21st century jet behind the 19th century steeple. I thought it captured well the theme of the conference.