I’m bowled over. What I’ve learned about mushrooms has amazed me. Here’s a shocking fact: There are over one-and-a-half million species of fungi on planet earth. Here’s another one: Fungi can be used to create antibiotics and building materials. Here’s a third, mushrooms are closer to humans than they are to plants.
When I was young, my grandma taught my sister and me how to knit bed socks. Well, to be clear, she taught my sister how to knit them and she tried to teach me. My sister seemed to have the knack that she gained from our mother and her mother. I fell short. Though I could appreciate the effort, the artistry, and the results — wearable garments, mostly — I couldn’t quite gather enough interest or facility to continue. We all have our gifts.
When I was ten, I had an imaginary stable of five, poorly-named horses. To be fair, I had no idea back then that I’d become a writer. Maybe if I’d had an inkling, I would have tried harder to create more intriguing names. Instead, they were about as predictable as a sunrise: Queenie, Star, Princess, Brownie, and Blackie. I hang my head in shame, lol. But I did enjoy roping them in my front yard, though my siblings didn’t know what to do with me. I guess you could say my imagination always was in overdrive.
I can remember enjoying tree tunnels even as a child. When I lived in a rural part of northern California, in tall, redwood country, the road that led to the town of Santa Rosa often had stretches where the tree canopy closed well above the road. The resulting shade created a magical place. At night, when the dense canopy cut out both moon and starlight, the darkness was eerie, yet still magical.
I originally decided to feature dandelions because they’re a fun flower and make beautiful photos. But after doing a bit of research, I’ve decided I must add dandelions to my diet. The health benefits appear to be significant. I’ll be interested to know how many of you already make sure you have the various parts of this plant in your diet.
With their large, round eyes, enhanced by intriguing feathers, owls have an appearance of intelligence. In Mongolia, the owl is considered a benign omen. In the West, the owl is at times a symbol of wisdom and at others a ‘funereal bird and monster of the night.” In Mayan and Aztec cultures, the owl is the harbinger of death and destruction. Some Native American tribes associate owls with sorcery and other evils. (Source) Regardless how owls are viewed within a given culture or time period, they are incredible birds of prey with unique attributes that make them amazing hunters.
Many moons ago, I was a tour guide at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, where I met people from all over the world. It was wonderful. One of the most famous rides in the park was ‘The Matterhorn’, a mild, bobsled roller coaster ride, built in 1959 and fashioned after the beautiful Alpine peak. So, the Matterhorn has been part of my consciousness for a long time.
After I researched Slovenia, I knew I had to do at least one blog on the country’s famous Lake Bled and its fairy-tale island. I even found photos of the island covered in snow which give it an even more romantic look. Since the days of the Hapsburg’s, Slovenes would take their guests to this magical island. Lake Bled is near the Julian Alps.
Though made of fossilized tree resin, amber is still considered a gemstone. It’s been valued since neolithic times and is most often fashioned into jewelry. Beyond its magic and beauty, amber is a window to the past because of what gets trapped inside during the formation process. Think Jurassic Park.
The word ‘Pamukkale’ means ‘cotton castle’ or ‘cotton kingdom’ in Turkish. The hot springs and natural travertine terraces of Turkey’s Pamukkale have made this area a tourist destination for thousands of years. The beautiful, pure white terraces are filled with mineral rich, warm water. Take your swim gear and enjoy a relaxing soak.