Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Veterans Day

And the star-spangled banner doth wave...

We didn't need a committee
We didn't need a fundraiser
We didn't need snacks and beverage
We didn't need fore though of sacrificing our time
We didn't need pomp and ceremony, awards or a thank-you
We didn't need to question why
All we needed was a few good men and women to get the job done to honor the Veterans
We didn't forget

words and photos by roman blazic_all rights reserved


At least hear me out.

This is the third time in my life that I had such an encounter. The first time was with my mother when I was about six years old. We talked about this for many years. Yes, family would laugh and roll their eyes as you might be doing now. It was something you never forget regardless of what people would say or think of us.
This first encounter took place at Country Lakes (Estates) as it is now known in the New Jersey. Country Lakes is a short distance from Fort Dix. Fort Dix, the common name for the Dix unit of Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, is a former United States Army post (now Army Support Activity under jurisdiction of the United States Air Force's 87 ABW).
It was late at night when something didn't seem right. Mom paused to look upward to the sky. I heard our neighbor call to his wife to get in the house. They ran and closed the door. Mom was still looking up with a smile of amazement. It must be something good if mom is smiling. That how I, as a young child, thought things to be. So I looked and it became very clear what she was looking at.
A bright but dull circular light was silently descending from the sky. It kept coming down until it was hovering above a forty foot tree or so. It was bigger than the size of  our house. It was motionless but yet you felt a slight tingle on your skin. Mom still had that smile on her face and so I wasn't afraid. Neither one of us had to shield our eyes with our hands because the light was clear but not brilliant.
It began to slowly ascend after a few minutes and then it suddenly, in a burst of speed, flew up and sped across the night sky and disappeared from view.
Dad was early to bed and way too early to rise. That had to do with his work hours. So he never got to hear our story. He found out that something important happened when several military cars filled the roads during his early morning walk. One car pulled over and a MP asked him if he noticed anything last night. Well dad didn't notice anything. He was asleep.
Dad continued his long walk and then returned home. The rest of us had gotten up a little before he came home. Dad told us of his brief conversation with the military and how they took off when he asked them what was up. Mom was still excited and told him what happened. She told dad that she would talk to the MP's. Dad exploded and said, "No!" "No you won't." He then hurried us to eat breakfast and to get dressed. "Mary please just do what I said." Dad was in a hurry to take us for a drive to Brown's Mills New Jersey, which isn't that far from us, to visit a family friend. Dad did the right thing. He knew that mom would have been relentlessly questioned. He was protecting us both.
The ride was very quiet, no conversation at all.
Once we arrived dad told my brothers and I to go out and play. That was the end of it. But mom and I never forgot and talked about it many times over the years and didn't care who heard our story.
This is what I saw a few night ago in Fishtown. These pictures were shot from a tripod.

Then this happened.
It took off with a sudden burst of speed before the camera's shutter closed.
What else can I tell you.

real event story and photos by roman blaic_all rights reserved

Friday, October 31, 2014

A Point of Honor

I enjoy walking the streets of Fishtown. Many homes are decorated in the spirit of Halloween with witches, ghost, goblins, jack-o-lanterns, creepy effigies, cobwebs and spiders and the such.
My intention was to photograph these displays to highlight the spirit of the neighborhood too. It would be a good challenge to take photographs at night to capture the full effect and try to frame it through the eyes of a child.
I already had many photographs to process from last Saturday's "Halloween Hoedown" at Penn Treaty Park. I had to stay focused because the community newspaper, The Spirit, asked me to provide some pictures for this week's edition. I also had to finish up these pictures for The Friends of Penn Treaty Park. I'm still not finished because old injuries have a way of up and biting me that slow me down.
There was one home's decorations displayed that was made by the families youngest child. I could not for the life of me remember seeing any other home that displayed their child's decorations throughout the neighborhood. Maybe there was something I had missed during my walks over the past two weeks. Still, for the life of me, I didn't see any others.
These child's decorations struck me with a deep sense of honor. It is the honor of family togetherness, participation, acceptance and the patience of a parent to instill goodwill, cooperation and foster creativity in that budding stage of a child's development. This made my day.
Trick or Treat!

story and  photo by roman blazic_all rights reserved    

Monday, October 27, 2014

Halloween Hoedown 2014

Words and pictures for our nearest and dearest neighbors and those who came from Puerto Rico, Spain, Germany and France to experience the culture of Fishtown.

 On a sun splashed day, the community came together for what has become an annual neighborhood tradition. Almost one thousand kids and adults had a blast at the 4th Annual Friends of Penn Treaty Park Halloween Hoedown, sponsored by the Penn Treaty SSD and Johnny's Hots
Along with fabulous refreshments, fresh apples, candy and other Halloween treats, each child received a free pumpkin. The kids enjoyed some time in the moon-bounces, face painting and the soon-to-be upgraded playground after the fun of picking their pumpkin.
This year was even more special as I got to greet a young lady who just moved from Puerto Rico to Port Richmond. This the first time she ever saw a pumpkin patch and she hardly could contain her glee. Visitors from Spain and Germany read about and saw pictures of Penn Treaty Park. It was after our introductions that the man from Germany asked if I was the Roman who has the blog. He complimented me on my photos and said he never read anyone who writes stories that made his brain bounce. He loved "The Annoying Middle Class" stories and then we got cut off for what looked like a fire had started. The generator began bellowing smoke due to a malfunction. 
It was the people from France that warmly sought me out. They thanked me for writing about Francoise Hardy. Yea, my stories drove them nuts too and with laughter. It was the words "by deeds of peace" that held the most meaning to them. They were so glad to see Penn Treaty Park and planned to dine on Girard Avenue. It was a wonderful day for all. Fishtown is global. Go figure.
(click picture for slideshow)

all photos by roman blazic_all rights reserved

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Monday, October 13, 2014

River City Festival

Rain, Rain Go Away...Yea

It was a day where I couldn't help to think that maybe, just maybe, Gene Kelly or Judy Garland would appear on stage performing "Singing In The Rain": "What a glorious feeling." "I'm happy again." Everyone was happy as the rain stopped and the festival went on full swing.
Many braved the weather and wisely so. The reward was a fine and friendly crowd and that undefeated spirit of togetherness.
The Fishtown Neighbors Association organized this event at Penn Treaty Park "by deeds of peace." So if you missed it, here's a peek at that day. Oh yea, there was beer but you had to pay for it.
Enjoy the pictures.
(click on picture for slideshow)

all photos by roman blazic_all rights reserved

"by deeds of peace"