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Copyright © 2017 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

…in a puddle.

We’ve been enjoying a fair amount of rain in Northern California of late. So much so that Northern California has been declared officially out of the drought!  The reservoirs are full and spilling over, and the aquifers are filling up. WHOOO-HOO!

Last week-end I had signed up to join one of my Meet-Up groups at a National Wildlife Refuge to do some birding. Thankfully the weather was partially cloudy and no rain was in the forecast.  Gordon who some of you know from Thursday Doors lives just north of me an hour or so was also going and has caught the Birding Bug…it’s addicting! Just sayin. We talked/emailed ahead of time and after hearing my plan to get an early start and visit another refuge, and stop for lunch at my favorite burger joint in Merced before meeting the group he decided to join me.

Gordon picked me up at 6:3o ish in the morning and we headed south down to Hwy 152…Pacheco Pass.  Famous for gnarly accidents, and its beautiful rolling hill scenery.

It’s a two lane highway/pass that gets far more traffic than anyone foresaw way back in the day when highways were being constructed.  Just outside of Gilroy, CA…the Garlic Capitol of the USA are vast fields that used to be used for flowers, and garlic. Today they’re used for garlic, flowers, pastures, and ….fields.

After rain…heavy rain there are pretty good sized puddles, and fog out in the countryside, and while Gordon and I were driving to Merced we saw both our dreaded Tulle fog, and puddles. There was a vineyard and hills with fog that we loved so we pulled over to photograph what we saw, but the sun was rising just then and by the time we got our gear set up the fog had retreated to the farthest trees. Isn’t it annoying how fast the fog, sun, and moon disappear when you break out the camera gear! Seriously!

While Gordon was photographing the vineyard across the road and the field we parked in I was interested in photographing the setting Moon above the fog and hills. I found a big puddle with the reflected Moon in it and thought, ” this is where I’ll make my composition.”.  This is the resulting image.

Mist, Moonset, Puddle, Reflection

By Spring I’m hoping the powers at be will relax the stringent conservation rules and relax them a bit since we’re going to have a surplus for a while up here in the north. Southern California hasn’t seen enough rain to break through the drought yet, but by Spring when the snow melts I hope they do. There’s a lot of snow in the mountains and I’m hearing it has good water content.

I’ve lived in California since I was 1 yr old. My Mom wanted out of the south and live in a warmer climate with fewer bugs.  Thank you Mom! 🙂  She did all she could to get my Father to get a commission in CA.  He was in the Marines then.

This is the 4th severe drought I’ve lived through. Severe meaning putting buckets in the shower, and bathtub to catch all the running water while it’s heating up to do dishes, and water plants, taking a ten minute or less shower. I hate that! I love a HOT, LONG shower! We gave up watering the back lawn all together and only watered the front lawn twice a week for 10 minutes, and severely cut the amount of lawn and plants we have outside due to the severe drought, the cost of water to maintain them was too dear, and the worst is not flushing every time. The motto in a drought is: ” Let the yellow mellow, and flush the brown down”.  That’s the reality at my house during drought years.

I’m so happy the drought is over!  I hope prices of water will come down soon, but I’ll continue to conserve and not waste too much water because I know it’s only a matter of time before Mother Nature and weather here in California go into another long drought cycle.  It’s California, a very arid and drought prone state. I fully anticipate a 5th severe drought in my lifetime.  Long sigh. Earthquakes and droughts…long droughts. You really don’t want to move here.

I hope the Northeast and other parts of the country get enough rain, and snow with good water content to break their drought too.

Nikon Df| Nikkor 20mm f/1.8G| Delkin Digital Film| PS CC 2017

More to come…

 

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45 Comments

  1. But I forgot to mention how much I enjoyed the photo! It is just gorgeous. Yay for reappearing puddles! 🙂

  2. I’d still move back to northern CA in a heartbeat if I could. I am reading “Cadillac Desert”~have you read it? It is an eye-opener although some of what he talks about I knew. I worry that Wa will begin having human -induced drought. At any rate I have been so happy to read of your drought ending now. Of course, now there are rivers in the skies and dams threatening to give way. What next?!

  3. Water is such a precious resource! Love this photo and what you had to say Deborah!

  4. I admire what you do to conserve water. I also loved the puddle reflection of the gorgeous sky with bright spot of moon upon the water! This was really special, Deborah. 🙂

    • Thank you Robin!

      • It takes work to really find the right shot, Deborah. I am learning a little as I go but I admire your photographic craft! Hope you have a beautiful weekend! xo

        • Thank you so much Robin! I’m still learning…I’ll be learning the rest of my life. I love this medium!

          Spent the day birding with a friend and clocked a lot of miles, and got two “lifer” birds! It’s already a great week-end. I hope yours is great too! xx

  5. I’m keenly aware that Canadians are among the worst for wasting water. Most of us just take it for granted and a post like this one is always a bit of a reality check.

  6. Love your moonset and composition, Deborah! And I am happy for you and California to be out of the drought. Although the news informs us of the floods, I hope it’ll all recede nicely and replenish the waterways and lands back to their beauty. 🙂

  7. I went from drought in Sanoma Ca. to drought in South Texas. I feel your pain.

  8. Glad the drought has lifted! How’s Mono Lake faring? Our #2 Daughter worked out there two or three summers during college, and we were sad to hear it was drying up. Good for tufa-viewing, though!

    • I was at Mono Lake in Oct. 2016 and the level looked pretty much the same as it had from the previous year.
      Since the water authority is letting the lake fill up again naturally it should rise a bit this year with all the rain and snow melt. Well, I hope!

      You’re probably one of only a handful of people outside of CA that has heard of this amazing lake, and probably pronounce it correctly too! 🙂

      The Tufa’s are amazing. I feel very blessed to have been able to see and photograph them.

  9. I love the photo. I really enjoy looking at reflections in photos and I like how this one has the moon, but not the low colors of the sunset. It’s a nice bit of separation. I was surprised that I liked that.

    We are still in drought conditions here in New England and the latest forecast says it will continue through the winter. No snow remains around here, and the ground is warm enough to have absorbed the recent rain storms. We are supposed to get rain this weekend, and maybe heavy rain on Monday, but I think we finished 2016 way below normal.

    I am glad you included the geographic description. Once, while attending a technical conference, I attended the Gilroy Garlic Festival. I thought it was pretty weird, but my wife loves garlic, so I went and I shipped a garlic braid back to her (I wasn’t putting that in my luggage).

    • HAHAHA! Oh gaul, your whole suitcase would have had to air out for sometime if you had, and you’d be thinking about Italian food or something yummy with garlic every time you smelled it.

      I haven’t been to the Garlic Festival in eons. It’s so, so crowded now. I think it’s neat that you know the general location of where I was when I made this image.
      Did your wife use the garlic or use it a decorative piece in the kitchen?

      I hope you’re out the drought soon! It’s not fun when it goes on and on, and on.

      Thank you so much for the compliment on the image!

      • My wife used the garlic, and for several years, I ordered a braid for her, from that same farm, for Christmas. I think they changed hands. The order process changed and the last braid I bought her was very dry. It was fun for several years. We still have a garlic-shaped magnet on the fridge.

        It is nice to know a big about where people were when they take photos. It brings back good memories.

        • I noticed the big garlic factory has a new name when driving by it last Saturday. That surprised me!

  10. water is such a precious resource! sometimes it takes not having it to realize. I LOVE the moon reflection in the water. So beautiful.

  11. Beautiful photo. I applaud your water saving skills. We have an on demand water heater that is so very efficient but requires a fair amount of water going down the drain to get to the hot water. I have often thought I wish I had a way of reclaiming that water besides carrying buckets through the house and down the stairs to the outside. I’ll keep thinking on that. 🙂

    • Ugh! Lugging the water down stairs would be a pain! Our house is single story. I’ve never wanted a two story b/c of the stairs…while wonderful when your young I’ve seen first hand how hard they can be to manage in old age with my Mother-in-Law. She ended up moving down to the first floor of her house in her last years.

      I hope you come up with an amazing, plan to get the cold water downstairs!

  12. In Summer if our reservoirs in the UK are full on Tuesday there’s a hosepipe ban by Friday. Not because of an arid climate, far from it. Water companies with religious ducts, I guess (they’re holy).
    A fascinating insight, Deborah, thanks. 🙂 And well done mum! Or should she have pushed for Hawaii for the extra running water ; )

    • I would think islands have more worries about fresh water. No?
      Hawaii is gorgeous, but it’s so expensive!

      When I was 10 or 11 my Dad opened a huge world map on the kitchen table and asked me where I’d like to live between the following countries. Australia, Hawaii, or Alaska.
      I voted for Australia. My Dad wanted Alaska. My mom had veto power. We’re all still in the States. 🙂

  13. So, this is the replacement blog to Thursday Doors! Nice post. How did your San Felipe Lake photos turn out?

    • Thank you so much Gordon!
      There’s no replacement to Thursday Doors! I need to work on a couple of door posts.

      My San Felipe Lake/pond images are pretty, but you know how much I wanted the fog rising off the water…the sun burned it off so fast! So, it’s not what I had in my head.

      How did yours turn out?

  14. Wow! Here in Utah I think we are well on our way to a nice summer with few or no water restrictions due to all the rain and snow we’ve been getting this winter. Glad your drought is over!

    • YEAH!!! I’m so happy to hear you’re out of the drought too. The strain of conserving and the cost are stressful…more so these last two severe droughts. I fear in the future the cost will be worse than now. As the population increases the drought gets worse and worse! There’s never any talk of population control. Why not?
      People who are serious about water conservation and resource conservation have to also be serious about population control. Yet you never hear that. NEVER!

      • Hmmm. I don’t believe in population control. I believe there is plenty of room and resources for everyone on this earth. I think education is key. Teaching our future generations to respect what we have and to waste not, want not. Most of all, I believe in God and his plan for us. He created all life and we existed before we came to this earth. So, rest easy! God is good and he knows more than we do and sees more than we see. ❤

        • I hope you’re right! 🙂 I think I have pretty strong faith, but when it comes to the west and water…I have doubts.

          • Well, my husband explained it this way- there are areas that are highly populated and they do have water issues, but there are a lot of open areas that have more than enough water, such as Ontario, which has most of the world’s fresh water. Thanks for the conversation! 🙂


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