Favorite Quotes

  Give me odorous at sunrise a garden of beautiful flowers where I can walk undisturbed. ~Walt Whitman


Out & About—One of only three in Southern California — Russel Ray Photos

I think my last hike might have been this past June when I hiked the Lake Calavera South Trail in Carlsbad. The old body just isn’t what it used to be. In the map below, you can see all sorts of dotted lines representing trails. If only I had discovered Calavera 40 years ago! Lake […]…

Halls of History—The woman belongs in the home…. — Russel Ray Photos

When I was young and living with my wise old grandmother in Kingsville, Texas, I looked forward to the days when the Fall and Spring catalogs arrived from Sears. We also received the Montgomery Ward catalogs, but there was nothing like the catalogs from Sears. Dreamland…. Of course, catalog offerings changed over the years, and […]…

Opinion Page

In Texas yesterday, a man walked into a Baptist church and killed 26 people with a semi-automatic rifle that my colleague Nathaniel Helms says most likely was a Ruger .223 cal., AR-556, “obtained almost anywhere good guns are sold.” And what did Americans do? Some cried: Some prayed: Some prayed a lot: Some cried […] via…

A world-class rose garden in full spring bloom.

Beautiful Balboa Park!

The world-class Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden in Balboa Park was in full bloom on Easter Sunday. The world-class Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden in Balboa Park was in full bloom on Easter Sunday.

Today I visited a very special place. I took a slow stroll through the amazingly beautiful Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden in Balboa Park. It also happens to be Easter Sunday. Many people were enjoying the vibrant colors. The rose garden is in gorgeous, full spring bloom.

The Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden is truly world-class. It has won so many prestigious awards, signs and plaques appear all over the garden singing its praises. Just walking about randomly, I noticed this garden has been inducted into the Great Rosarians of the World’s Rose Garden Hall of Fame, has earned the Public Rose Garden Award from All-America Rose Selections, has gained an Award of Garden Excellence from the World Federation of Rose Societies, and goodness knows what else!

And here I…

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Sparks of light…

The Silent Eye

Bonfire night. In Britain, it is celebrated on November 5th every year to commemorate the death of Guy Fawkes. He was the conspirator charged with lighting the fuse on the thirty-six barrels of gunpowder secreted in a cellar beneath the Houses of Parliament in 1605.

It was a time of religious intolerance, when politics, power and religion were intimately linked. King Henry VIII had broken with Rome  with the Act of Supremacy in 1534 and for seventy years and through the reigns of the last Tudor monarchs, the pendulum had swung between religious factions. When James VI of Scotland, son of the beheaded Catholic Mary, Queen of Scots, came to the English throne after the death of Elizabeth, the Catholic community hoped for a return of their faith and position. King James made it clear that this would not be the case and a plot was devised to assassinate the…

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