The Oquirrh (pronounced like “ochre” and meaning “wooded mountain” or “shining mountain” in the Goshute Indian language) Mountains provide a natural boundary for the western edge of the Salt Lake Valley…and while they are not as impressive in forested ruggedness and height as the Wasatch Mountains that serve as the eastern boundary, they do have their moments of splendor. Something that detracts from the natural beauty of the range is the open-pit mine that you can see toward the right of the image. All of that being said, the Oquirrhs do still provide a compelling backdrop or landscape feature when viewed under particular circumstances and from certain perspectives. I made this photo while on the summit of Grandeur Peak (8,299 ft), which is on the opposite side of the valley, just north of the entrance to Millcreek Canyon.
This is from March, 2011…with another two months of snow to come…two weather systems per week moved through the area mountains from March to May of that year, bringing record snow levels to the Wasatch….
This was the first of five images in the Homestead series…to see all of the photographs in the collection, you can scroll to the bottom of the page and click on Homestead Series under the Categories icon.
I don’t often post twice in one day, but this was too good to pass-up, given the occasion…. It’s been snowing for almost two hours now…close to two inches of white stuff on the ground so far…projected to get close to four inches in the Salt Lake Valley…and over a foot in the nearby mountains….
Baby Cosette joined us in time to be an early Christmas present for her Papa….
We were sitting on the couch, my little one and I, with his mom on the love-seat across from us, watching a movie. We had a bowl of popcorn between us, and as my little one reclined into one of the pillows, he took handfuls of the popcorn and not so delicately or accurately plied the fluffy stuff into his mouth. When the majority of the bowl was gone, he started playing with the pieces of popcorn, alternately flicking them into his mouth or smashing them in his palm and then licking-up the pieces like a dog. We paused the movie occasionally to ask or answer a question, to run to the bathroom, get a refill of one of our drinks or the other…and then continued watching and eating and enjoying the movie and each other’s company. The further into the bowl we got, the more broken pieces of popcorn there were on the little one’s blanket, pillow, pajamas, and surrounding couch area.
I reached over to pick-up some of the crumbs and broken pieces to put them back in the bowl…and made a mistake….
“Do you think you’re making a big enough mess, you little slob?”
Did you just…call me a slob?
My little one asked this with a quivering chin and downcast eyes as he picked a piece of popcorn off of the blanket beneath his chin and placed it anxiously into his mouth.
“Well yeah, look at the mess…hey….”
There were big alligator tears and an immediately running nose and the sobbing of words and half words that I couldn’t understand between his crying and the movie and his mom and my questioning and….
“Hey there…I was just playing….”
Why…did you…call…me that? What was…why are you….
And more tears…and my heart was breaking at his breaking heart and I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, and oh….
“Hey, Buddy, look at me,” as I patted his foot, “I was only playing…you’re making such a mess here…hey…look…I was only playing.” I reached over and dragged him to me…. “Hey…I call your mom a slob too, sometimes…when she makes a mess…I wasn’t trying to be mean….”
And his chest was shaking and he was wiping tears across his face and his mom brought over a Kleenex to blow his nose…and I was holding back a smile in my amazement and tears in my sadness at how I had just crushed his little heart…his daddy calling him a slob.
“Hey there…why are you crying? I was only playing….”
I…don’t like…being…called names.
“I’m sorry…I’m so sorry, Buddy. I wasn’t trying to hurt your feelings or upset you…I was just playing with you.”
I accept your…apology. Sniff….
An important aspect of my little one’s life and existence, at this point in his eight years (now eleven), and possibly for many more years as he learns to decipher and remember the various meanings of our vast array of socially constructed and freighted expressions and intentions and nuanced meanings, is his acceptance of things as they are presented to him. He doesn’t see the gray or shading in many of our words and intentions. The idiosyncrasies of our speech and the subtle and not-so-subtle meanings of our paired words sometimes escape him, even when we’re joking around…they mean, to him, what they literally mean. In my playing, I forgot about the concreteness of his brilliant little mind…and the tenderness of his easily broken heart.
Oh…how it hurts sometimes….
This is a Favorite Re-post from April, 2010.
I borrowed the title from my friend Melanie at Lemony Shots…a compelling photographer who has a discerning eye, one that finds the extraordinary in decrepit buildings and spiders’ webs and transporting images of dandelion seeds and gray mornings of peaceful solitude in empty fields…you’ll want to visit with her if you haven’t done so already….
1. to cause to run off the rails
2. a. to obstruct the progress of
b. to upset the stability or composure of
Synonyms: agitate, ail, alarm (also alarum), bother,concern, disturb, discomfort, discompose, dismay, disquiet,distemper, distract, distress, exercise, flurry, frazzle, freak (out), fuss, hagride, perturb, undo, unhinge, unsettle, upset,weird out, worry
Related Words: aggravate, anger, annoy, bug, chafe, chivy(or chivvy), exasperate, fret, gall, get, grate, harass, harry,irk, irritate, nettle, peeve, pester, pique, put off, put out,rile, vex; bedevil, haunt, plague; abash, confound, confuse,discomfit, disconcert, discountenance, embarrass, faze,fluster, jar, mortify, nonplus, rattle, shake up; daunt,demoralize, discourage, dishearten, dispirit, unnerve
***Above information courtesy Merriam-Webster on-line dictionary
This is another view from my perch on the slice of mountain that exists between Days Fork and Cardiff Fork…what I believe is called the Reed and Benson Ridge…looking toward the left, or east, of the panorama that you can see in the recent post, My Mountains. Again, this gorgeous area is found in Big Cottonwood Canyon, part of the Wasatch Mountains that form the eastern boundary for the greater Salt Lake Valley.