There is a yin and yang to traveling together. Chinese philosophy explains how opposite forces are actually complementary and interdependent in the natural world and how they give rise to each other as they interrealte to one another (thank you, wikipedia!)
In no where is that more evident in traveling with a partner! For Rick, it was a bike ride as soon as we landed in Geneva, to be followed by work at the trade show. For me, it was to connect with people I enjoy in a part of the country I love. While I am content in my world and eagerly anticipate venturing out to see sights and then return home, Rick just wants to move! (He was ready to move to Oberlin last fall, Massachusetts or upstate New York last week and Canada any time!)
But our opposite forces clearly interrelated, as wiki would say, on this trip! After driving through torrential rain, we landed in the best spot imaginable -- the cozy home of Randy and Elaine, Rick's brother and wife.
We were warmly welcomed not only by the humans but by Pickles and Daisy, two of the friendliest cats ever!
The following morning it was off to the trade show where Rick and I hawked his wares.
Then a special event -- the reunion of Rick and his high school friend Eugene after at least 20 plus years (and more likely, more than that!). Gene and his wife met us for dinner and both were so terrific I wished they lived next door! Somehow I felt we would be doing lots of fun things together if we lived closer. While I expected Rick and Gene to pick up quickly, I often have a hard time meeting with new people and yet within minutes I felt like I'd known both of them a long time. It was such a treat and I was sorry when the evening ended.
After another day of trade show we returned to Pittsfield, riding through some glorious countryside as we abandoned the turnpike for one of the quieter routes.
We passed through the small town of Lee where I was finally able to capture this church in a drive-by shooting. I've been trying for years but the sky was right and so was the camera!
Randy and Elaine invited their good friends Tim and Nancy for dinner and it was another delightful evening with much laughter and camaraderie.
I would be remiss about talking about our visit without mentioning the birds!
Randy and Elaine have a wonderful deck and many bird feeders. They attract a wide array of birds and I couldn't stop photographing them!
One disturbing thing was the prevalence of a disease affecting many finches, notably in the northeast. It's a mycoplasmal conjunctivitis and is caused by a parasitic bacterium. The eyes become red and swollen. Apparently the disease is contagious, at least among finches. (For more on this visit HERE.)
Apparently after pet stores stopped illegal sales of finches, the birds were released, bred and the disease spread. There are concerns as to how far west it may have spread since it crossed the Rockies in 2006.
Nevertheless, the birds are still lovely to watch, though this is a bit disturbing.
And it's clear that Daisy is watching, too!
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