Cactus, Rocks, Support and Connections in AZ – Picture to Ponder – Vol 4- Issue 38

by Sheila Finkelstein on October 15, 2008

Red Prickly Pear cactus in Boyce Thompson Arboretum

Lindy Erwell photographs Sheila Finkelstein in Boyce Arboretum Sheila on Rocky ledge in Boyce Arboretum

Today’s Picture to Ponder Photos

Top photo is Red Prickly Pear Cactus in the Boyce Thompson Arboretum in Superior, Arizona, between Scottsdale and Phoenix

In the bottom left picture is Lindy Erwell photographing me as I (in the right photo) aim my camera at her

As I poured through my almost 500 photos from Boyce, for some reason the top photo, with its pinks, contrasts and shadows begged to be the featured photo for the day. So I followed that “little voice.”

In the meantime, since similar cactus plants seemed to be almost everywhere in Arizona, I realized that you would not get a sense of the Boyce Arboretum from this photograph. I, thus, selected the bottom two photos to give you some visuals of the environment and our hike.

The Story
Ordinarily when I am on outings, my camera and I are intent on the elements of Structure and Nature as we meander through wherever we are. On this particular day I became totally captivated with the different postures Lindy assumed as she photographed whatever she was intent on capturing with her camera. Starting with her lying flat on the ground to photograph a grasshopper, as close up as she could, I took many photos with her as subject. (See the start of my Arizona Set on FlickR for a few of the others.)

I was enthralled with the rhythm and the flow of the lines of her body and the ease with which she assumed the postures necessary to fulfill on her intentions. The featured photo of her, I think, gives a sense of that.

Aside from being the “candid camera” subject of so many of my photos, Lindy also volunteered her arm for support for me as I went down many of the rocky paths. She even offered, and managed, to add my camera bag and water bottle to her slim shoulders. I agreed with some reluctance. See LINDY with camera bags.

One of the most exciting aspects of the outing with Shellie, my hostess, and Lindy is that I “met” Lindy when she was a participant in one of my Through and From the Lens Teleclasses, more than two years ago. We have maintained occasional email contact since, mainly as a result of her having become a periodic commenter to various issues of Picture to Ponder. Knowing that she lives in Scottsdale, when I planned my visit, I contacted her, in advance, to see if we could get together.

After our day together, we both shared our delight on the “connections” made through the course and how it seems like we’ve known each other forever.

Although it’s been some time since Lindy has updated her photos on FlickR, you can see many that she took during the four weeks of our course on Lindy’s FlickR Photos.

Reminder – Through and From the Lens is being offered in-person for the first time in South Florida on Saturday, October 25th. “Connections” are one of the bonuses of the course. See Saturday Workshop It will be resumed as a teleclass series starting in November. To be on the list for more details for these classes, fill in your name and time preference on the form on the blog.

Today’s Self-Reflecting Queries
As I think, and write about, my experiences with Lindy, her support during the climbing up and down over rocks at Boyce Arboretum becomes a prime part of my experience and memory.

Today, I invite you to look into your life to see:

1. Are there areas in your life where there are people who want to be helping you and supporting you and you, in your need to be “strong” and “independent,” are either ignoring or outright rejecting their offers?

If so, I invite you to open yourself up to the contribution being offered and see what opens up for both parties. Keep in mind how much you, presumably, enjoy helping others.

2. Are there people in your life with whom you’ve had some connection, would like to have more and, for whatever reason, you haven’t taken that first step?

Again, if “yes”, I invite you to reach out, have some fun and see what opens up for you.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Nancy Dault October 17, 2008 at 2:45 pm

I’m very much like the prickly pear here, standing with my thorns, saying try to bite me and see what happens! But there are people who, for whatever reason, seem to like me as I am. They know that even a prickly pear cactus has its beauty, has its reason for being here. People who like such a plant would not want it to be anything else.

Such people are the solid rocks in my environment, the ground that sustains me, the nourishment I don’t easily see but know I receive, because I thrive.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post:

© 2017 Sheila Finkelstein - All Rights Reserved - Photography and Writing are by Sheila Finkelstein unless otherwise noted. For information contact Sheila[at]