By Barbara Falconer Newhall, with a little help from her friends
On my last birthday, in September, I had three wonderful days at Tuolumne Meadows and Inyo National Forest in the Sierra Nevada with two wonderful friends.
It was probably my best birthday ever — though there’s maybe some forgotten birthday back in my school days when I dressed up in a tafetta dress, put on my Sunday-best patent leather shoes, played pin the tail on the donkey and accepted wonderful gifts from my little girlfriends, also dressed up in tafetta and patent leather.
We were pretty, surely. But Tuolumne — Tuolumne is spectacular. Even my friend Al, who spends lotsa time in the Himalayas, swears that Yosemite and its high country is the most beautiful spot in the world.
I had my camera and took hundreds of pictures. I mean it, hundreds.
At every turn in the trail something new and unforgettable cried out to be noticed and recorded. Big things like rocks and mountains. Small things like the pinecones and duff under my grateful feet.
All that beauty, just sitting there, outdoing itself, whether anybody happened by that day or not — what to do about it?
If you’re my two friends, you quietly take it in. If you’re me, you snap yet another picture. And another. And another.
And you post another collection of them on your blog. And another.