Please enjoy a pictorial visit to the beautiful state of North Carolina, primarily the Blue Ridge Parkway.


To the End of Time and Back: An Epic Journey is available via Amazon and Kindle. It will grab you from the start and carry you to places you have never been. The book contains many diverse ideas and is a great love story filled with adventure and intrigue. Questions? Email me. To go to Amazon, click here.

Click here to link to a You Tube radio interview about To the End of Time. (Friend David Riggs produced it for me. To link to his book, click here.)

  • Two Poems on this Page: Within and The Beyond

  • Vignette this Month: Dan Ritchey

  • Recommendations


Father and son enjoying fishing along a small lake on the Parkway

This Issue: On this page we travel to North Carolina as we pictorially travel along the Blue Ridge Parkway. There are two serious poems this month, Within and The Beyond. The vignette discusses some little known facts about this newsletter.

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Two Poems this Month


High above the clouds
I long to write.
To capture these feelings
    of personal history.
Sadness looms
    for I possess no pen or paper.
My computer remains stowed
    for the flight duration.
Instead I savor the moments
    understanding that pen and paper
    cannot capture the within.
    I no longer feel sorrow.

Comments: Several of the quotes in this issue also touch on this topic.

The Beyond

As one enters the autumn of this journey–
    for the Chinese the springtime of life–
    one ponders the beyond,
    the infinite, the unknown.
Science claims
    we are eternal,
    turning into dust,
    atoms for the stars.

But we desire more,
    to reunite with those who have gone before.
Some claim to know.
Bless them.

But a Chinese Proverb
    is also wise.
“To say you don’t know
    is the beginning of wisdom.”

Comment: You interpret.


We took a quick break at Altapass where ice cream was being served and an opportunity to dance or simply listen was available..

Floral trees greeted you along the Parkway.

Despite the impending rain, a young woman models by standing on top of a bear proof trash bin. Lucky for her, it didn't tip. Frankly, I expected to capture a picture of a falling model.


Blue Ridge Parkway: We begin our tour at Asheville, ending at Blowing Rock. We started in clouds and rain.

Vignette this Month: Dan Ritchey

All of us somewhere in our lifetime have had an individual or individuals impact us and perhaps even change the directions of our lives. In past PJs I have written about several individuals who changed the course of mine. This month’s vignette is about one such man.

Dan Ritchey will always have special place in my heart for the role he played in my teenage life. At the age of 12 I fell in love with photography and in high school I learned much more from my mentor Dan Ritchey after I joined the photography staff of the Galion High School yearbook. (I being the staff. Dan was the photographer for the local newspaper and graciously volunteered his time.) Dan introduced and tutored me in the use of the old Graflex camera, at that time the workhorse for photojournalists. With that camera I needed to learn of then foreign concepts of f-stops, depth of field, and shutter speed. Plus you also built up your arm strength due to its weight. There was none of this point and shoot and magically a fine picture occurs. He also spoke of composition and the importance of a picture conveying a message. As a very shy teenager this role as yearbook photographer helped in many ways prepare me for my future. Seeing my photos from the Friday night football game appearing in the local paper enhanced my self-esteem and sense of pride. The ability to organize groups for a yearbook picture helped build my confidence. I remember well one assignment where I had to pose the cheerleaders for their yearbook shot. Despite my nervousness the picture turned out great. I could go on and on.

Because of Dan my original college major was photojournalism. Later, I returned to my hometown and taught school. I was privileged to have had Dan’s children in my classroom and in my way tried to pay him back for all he had done for me.

Today, photography is still an important part of my life, largely due to this man, Dan Ritchey, who over the decades continued to contribute so much to his beloved community. He passed at 90 years of age.

If you had an individual impact your life and want to share in the PJ, please email me with your narrative.

The rain clouds began to lift generating a portrait-like image.

The rains eventually dissipated providing a magnificent view of the vast green landscape and a cloud layer
second to none. Note the sunlight reflecting off the clouds.

The Parkway is cut through the rock cliffs.


If you happen to be traveling in North Carolina, here are some suggestions for good eating!


Village Inn in Blowing Rock, NC: We were lucky to get a table at this legendary
restaurant–a local favorite. It was Father's Day–delicious food and wonderful service.
Open breakfast/lunch - You walk down this picturesque lane to the seating area.

Mint Restaurant in Boone, NC: If you want to enjoy superb Indian food flavored to your taste, here is the place.

Miguel's in Charlotte, NC: A hole in the wall but delicious, authentic Mexican food–inexpensive and very popular.


Please take a look at the online book and gift pages.


Above and Below: A sea of greens


Table Rock off in the distance

Blowing Rock, NC: This rock formation is located near the resort community of Blowing Rock. It is
". . . an immense cliff 4,000 feet above sea level, overhanging Johns River Gorge, 3,000 feet below.
The phenomenon is so called because the rocky walls of the gorge form a flume through which
the northwest wind sweeps with such force that it returns light objects cast over the void."
For a link to the legend



Above & Below: This pictorial views were taken from the Blowing Rock observation deck.



Episcopal Church in Blowing Rock, NC


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