Sunday, April 15, 2007

An in between moment, morning


Looking out my hotel room window
San Francisco, CA, March 2007 [Click to embiggen]


In between moments come fast and furious when you're away on business. There's little free time to capture the spirit of this place, so you try to grab snippets wherever they present themselves.

It's early in the morning, and I'm getting ready in my hotel room. If you really want to know, I'm carefully ironing my shirt because, well, it's one of those on-the-road rituals that keeps me grounded. I've got a long day of work ahead of me. But I notice the soft glow of the morning sun reflecting off the front of the lovely old building across the street. My camera's right there, so I pick it up and take a quick couple of pictures before I get back to the serious business of eliminating creases.

Later on, I look closely at the picture I've captured of this genteel structure (click on it now, if you wish. No worries: I'll wait.) There's obvious decay in the corner, testament to its years of standing guard over this busy neighborhood. But it still looks regal, elegant, substantial.

Somewhere in this idle musing, there's an analog for humanity that I'm sure I'll be writing about before long.

Your turn: Maybe you want to take a stab at explaining the lesson this building holds for the rest of us. What is it saying to you?

15 comments:

Mr. Althouse said...

It looks like I feel sometimes. Still strong, but not as strong as I used to be.

Mike, via Michele's

MissMeliss said...

It looks sort of - not hopeful, and not anxious, but something in that vein. As if it's waiting for sunrise to come and chase away a nightmare. Can a building feel that?

Also, I like the way the positive and negative aspects of the building create a sort of "greek key" pattern (I don't know the name for the architectural feature, sorry.)

craziequeen said...

It looks, as you say, substantial, yet slightly decayed.

'Decayed' is a word used often to describe the British upper class, with elderly peers and crumbling stately homes......

Sadly, I have a mental image of Carmi ironing his shirts now..

I have a post at the Palace today you might be interested in....

cq
Michele sent me to see this magnificent picture today :-)

Pearl said...

It says to me it always gets more complex the higher you go, with a greater percentage for ornamental show. The less decorated do more of the business of holding everything together.

Michele sorta sent me.

Awareness said...

We are all beautiful, warts and all. In fact, maybe we are more beautiful because of the nicks and bruises we have accumulated along the way.

Definately more intersting when not so darn pristine.

will contemplate this one today. thanks.

kenju said...

It says.... I might have a few surface imperfections, but look at my core...see how long I have been standing, giving shelter and purpose to those who dwell or work within my walls. How sturdy and strong I look, in spite of the slightly crumbling outer surface. There's life and strength in me yet!

kenju said...

P.S. CArmi, I have a question....
what does the word punim mean, when used to describe a man?

(I am reading a book in which this word was used)

Anna said...

Well said Mike....another idea is that things arent always what they seem on the surface....a closer look reveals more than you could see at first...

Anna said...

BTW, where's your CAPTION THIS?!?!? :)

Sarch said...

Somehow the aging of the building adds to the solidity of the building to me.

It is a testament to the fact that the building has in fact weathered the storms of time. A perfect facade would hide the fact that the building has had a past and survived.

I see a parallel with life here.

Hey Carmi, your invited to a little get together over at my blog this evening.

Anna said...

Carmi, you presence has been requested over on Sarch's blog! See you there! :)

Rainbow dreams said...

I wonder about the stories a building that old has inside of it... what has happened in those rooms, what history there is behind those walls... and I wonder how bad the flaking paint and the wear and tear will have to get before anyone takes notice enough to do something about it....

jadedprimadonna said...

If you look at the entire thing, there is a clear order to the design. But I imagine if you were a fly crawling in one of the groves in the middle of two bricks, you might not be able to see the pattern. You might feel like it was very chaotic, as you tried to climb. But if you kept trying, reusing to stop when it began to feel chaotic, you might eventually find reassurance and even strength in the recognition of order.

tommiea said...

It looks like what people think I am....strong,

but I am not, this last year has shown me that.....I do have little crumbling corners of my life that people don't notice just at a glance.

Michael Manning said...

Carmi: Looking at interesting buildings such as this one and the fine details the bricklayers created from those early years, makes me wonder how many lived to show a grandchild their work as they walked below and gazed up for a look?