Here are a couple of windmills

2021 hasn’t exactly shaped up to be “the year we get it all back” after a completely nuts 2020, but I did manage to work a little less. I just didn’t get as much photography done as I’d wanted. I did, however, take a few photos, and naturally there were a couple of windmills in there.

I just got this one today, and it’s close to town. It sits right along 71st Avenue in Bismarck. Thankfully a guy can get this shot from the road, as the land is posted and I don’t violate those signs.

As the second photo demonstrates, fall colors are here! I wonder if I might be able to get a bunch of fall photos. We’ll see…

Go with the grain

I took this shot one evening when I was in kind of a hurry, and I didn’t check my camera settings. After I’d done a few shots I noticed that the ISO had been cranked up to 12,800, so I reshot a bunch of stuff, but I didn’t get this angle. Well, high ISO puts a ton of grain into the image, but I wanted the shot…so I decided to tone it for a vintage look, which plays right into the grainy look. After all, old film stock was awfully grainy anyway.

So, with the grain problem addressed, I was able to enjoy this photo…and now I get to share it. The ones I shot properly will appear in color at a later date.

Humor at the range

We recently took a group to a range in South Dakota to shoot for Marksman and Sharpshooter badges, and while we were there I spotted something I just had to share. See it yet? If so, you’ve got a good eye.

It’s cool that there’s a special lane just for those who utilize a wheelchair for mobility, but I give it extra points for the customized signage!

Ya gotta admire the job someone did at putting a semi-auto in this guy’s hand. It gave us all a chuckle, and I couldn’t wait to share this with my readers (assuming I still have some…I post so infrequently these days)!

If you’ll permit me a moment of bragging, I’d like to show you a grouping shot by my boy. I was able to cover this group with a quarter, shot with a gun he’d never even seen before. Proud Papa Moment.

So we had a great trip to the range! I got the photos and video I was looking for, my boy qualified for his badge, and I got something to share on the ol’ Blog. Trifecta.

Reflection

2021 has been as busy as 2020, unfortunately…although it has allowed some photography time. Sadly, I’m not posting them in a very timely fashion because I’m really busy. Take this photo, for instance: at the time when it was taken, there was still ice on Lake Sakakawea.

I really liked the reflection on the perfectly calm water. I’ve been doing a lot of personal reflection lately, too, and I’ve come to the conclusion that there just isn’t enough time. When I do take time off, I end up working at least as hard as when I’m on the job!

I’m working on a better work-life balance, but right now I’m still in the “as soon as I get _____ done…” phase. Hopefully in a few weeks I’ll get to do some more roaming with my gear and decompress a bit. Meanwhile, if I have opportunity, I do have plenty of photos to share. Stay tuned.

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2020 was “the lost year” for our family, since I was simply working constantly through it. I declared that 2021 would be “The year we get it all back.” And it has been quite a whirlwind of a year, just like 2020 was… but for some fantastic reasons. One of those reasons is a little more photo time, even though I haven’t posted much of anything.

I couldn’t wait to post this one, however. My travels took me past the little hamlet of Heimdal (that should get the attention of you Thor fans) yesterday, and I had to do a U-turn to come back and actually enter the town. The reason: this flag. Simple yet elegant. I love small towns, especially those in North Dakota.

Not only is a flag placed upon this sign, but it’s also been dressed. It hangs perfectly I wish I’d taken a photo of the back of the sign now, because it was as perfectly placed from that angle as it was from this one. All too often I get home and think, “I should have taken one more photo!” Well, this was one of those times. I’m so glad, though, that this caught my eye as I whizzed down the highway so I could get the photos I needed to show you my discovery.

Thank you, Heimdal.

Been a while since a windmill

I spotted this as the rain was about to move in, but I knew I had some time to make a quick capture. Windmills catch my eye often, and this one didn’t disappoint. It looks like it’s got a lot of character, no doubt derived from years – generations, maybe – of service.

Since I was in Morton County, I couldn’t help but hope that it would say “Mandan” on the back. But as I got closer, I saw that wasn’t the case. This is still a grand prairie specimen…and I just just enough time to take its picture before the rain moved in and brought my photography day to a profitable end.

So many Monty Python references here

I saw this tree along a Morton County highway and immediately thought of a litany of references from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. First was the easiest: “Your arm’s off! No it isn’t!” See where I’m going here?

“It’s only a flesh wound!” and “I’ve had worse!” also come to mind. I couldn’t help but stop, snap a couple of photos, and post them to share.

You’ve Got Mail – and lots of available space

This mailbox is many, many miles from…well, anywhere. But I’m sure it makes rural deliveries possible for plenty of folks ranching or farming in the area! It sits just south of our border with South Dakota, and naturally it caught my eye as unusual.

I don’t know if it’s been repurposed by the nearest resident or if it serves as a distribution point, but it sure looks cool, standing in isolation out along a vast stretch of the CanAm Highway!

Settled in

I spotted this little old building on my way back from the Black Hills recently. It’s got a lot of chaotic angles going on here, and even plenty of curves, and of course that’s what caught my eye.

How could you not have your attention grabbed by something like this? It’s almost like the structure is melting from the rear forward. Of course I had to do a U-turn and come back to check it out.

I admit, one of the things which made this one stand out to me was the little cupola at the top. While it’s pretty ragged, it’s actually hanging in there quite sturdily.

Remember I mentioned curves? Much of this wood is positively wavy. This wood has aged in a way which gives it a series of incongruent curves reminiscent of the lumber pile at Menard’s!

I have plenty of other photos to share – FINALLY – and hope to get back to some regular posting here in the future. That is, until the next emergency gets me swamped again…until then, let’s have ourselves some summer!