My young friend from England visited and, of course, I talked her into letting me take some Beautiful You images of her. She’s a photographer too, so she was already into posing before I even asked her to turn her head, twist at the waist, and all those other “torturous” things! We has so much fun applying makeup and curling hair and making gorgeous images!
I needed to work on my Beautiful You portfolio, so I called my sweet niece (who just happens to be married to my “favorite” nephew) to come over and “play Barbies” with me. I call it “playing Barbies” because I want the models to twist at the waist, turn their head 180˚, pull their chin out and down, twist their shoulder to the front, and smile – all at the same time! (I did ask one model if she could spin her head around like the girl in the Exorcist!)
The little mining town of Bodie, California began life in 1859 during the Gold Rush fever when a couple of prospectors found gold. Twenty years later it was one of the largest boom towns in California. Mining companies came in and built stamp mills that pounded the ore to remove the precious metals. At its peak almost 10,000 people resided in Bodie with over 2,000 buildings, many thrown up as fast as wood could be delivered. The railroad transported the gold bullion from nine stamp mills to Carson City and San Fransisco. Along with its own newspaper, a telegraph was installed to connect Bodie with neighboring towns. Today you can see some of the original poles still standing and used for telephone lines.
As a bustling gold mining center, Bodie had a bank, four volunteer fire companies, a brass band, a railroad, miners’ and mechanics’ unions, and a jail. At one time over 65 saloons lined Main Street, which was a mile long, and it wasn’t uncommon to have several murders, shootouts, brawls, and holdups each night. With the mines running three shifts a day, the red light district at the north end of town was said to be busy 24 hours a day, seven days a week. At the other end of town it was said that the respectable people of Bodie held Saturday night socials and dances. There were several restaurants and ice cream parlors.
By the 1880s the boom town has started to decline. By 1915 the pounding of the stamp mills had grown quiet and Bodie was already known as a ghost town. In 1920 only 12 people lived there and there were still residents until the 1940s. One of the mining stamp mills still stands as a reminder of Bodie’s glorious past. The town is in arrested decay now and what’s left of the bustling town is being preserved just as it was when people deserted it. Many of the houses have furniture and household items left in them. Stores still have merchandise stacked on shelves as if any minute someone would stop in to shop. Time has stood still for Bodie, and the ghost of the once booming town waits for the next tourists to walk its streets and bring back to life the stories of long ago.
(Bodie is located in the hills east of the Sierra Nevada mountain range between in California. It has an elevation of 8379 feet. When I was there at the first of October, the businesses in the neighboring town of Lee Vining on Mono Lake were already boarding up for the long cold winter. The rangers who live full time at Bodie spend the winters with snow and the only transportation in or out is on snow mobiles.)
I’ve visited Yosemite National Park several times and each time I’m in awe of the majestic panorama that surrounds me. The granite mountains carved by glaciers long ago stand as a testimony to God’s handiwork. Standing in Yosemite Valley and looking up at the granite structures surrounding you makes you feel very insignificant in the realm of creation. El Capitan stands guard while Half Dome watches over the serene valley below. I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of visiting Yosemite National Park and the Mariposa Big Trees that have stood the test of time for centuries.
“… the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.” Isaiah 55:12