Morning photo: Edit

Sometimes it’s fun …

OK, you can say I’m over-editing, but what the heck … sometimes it’s fun to see how far you can take an image without totally losing it. All the pics in this set are taken in Linz, Austria, and they’ve all been run through multiple Instagram filters, along with a few other tools to bring out grain, structure and color. They may not be photography masterpieces, but to me, they’re gritty edits of some of the places and views that I’ve become intimately familiar with in the last few weeks — a new look at familiar sights.

Morning photo: Golden

Before the change …

Autumn gave us one more dose of glorious gold the past few weeks, a gift of warmth before winter drapes its frozen fingers over the land. It’s almost as if the season is saying, “Look at me one more time, things are about to change.” Of course, things always change; they never stay the same, and that becomes especially obvious when trees shed their leaves en masse, with an entire summer’s worth of photosynthesis and chlorophyll drifting to the ground under the touch of the gentlest breeze. Cherish the change of seasons; don’t hold on to the past because there’s only here and now!

Morning photo: Vineyard mists


A weekend visit to southeastern Austria focused on visiting the border to Slovenia, where thousands of refugees continue to migrate toward Germany, and on interviewing local citizens who have taken refugees into their hearts and homes. But in between, I had a chance to wander through the vineyards of the region and capture a few scenes, especially as the valley mists started to lift in the mornings to reveal the enchanting landscapes. Stay tuned for more photos, as well as reporting on the refugee crisis that’s starting to split Europe along old fault lines.

Morning photo: Lingering …

Sweet October

After a chilly and rainy spell in mid-October, Indian Summer made a comeback late in the month, except here in Austria, it’s called Altweiber Sommer (old women’s summer). In the lowlands of the Danube River Valley there still hasn’t been a killing frost, which means there are garden roses hanging on to brilliant summer hues, and in the fields, wild mushrooms still abound. I wonder if it will last into November?

Morning photo: Rainy day(s)

Finding color on rainy, gray days isn’t all that hard, especially in the fall, when the plant world erupts in one last blast of color before winter’s grays and whites take over. Keeping my iPhone dry deep in the pocket of a raincoat, I set out for a short walk along the base of the Pöstlingberg, where residential streets give way to small urban garden plots, hedges and farm fields, looked for the brightest splotches I could find, including backyard fruit trees and berry bushes along the trail.

Morning photo: #Fleamarketfinds

One man’s junk …

Since I didn’t need a pair of used — but shiny — wingtips, I didn’t buy anything at the Linz fleamarket this morning, but I still had a good time. Fleamarkets can definitely evoke some pretty strong feelings if you let yourself drift down memory lane. I recognized several toy cars that I coveted as a toddler, and at another stand was a collection Pez dispensers that also brought back a flood of childhood remembrances. But the best part is watching the negotiations between buyers and sellers — the Italian shoe salesman explaining the intricacies of a small espresso maker, or the Matchbook car dealer, knowing that he has some real treasures, and refusing to sell himself short.

Morning photo: Snaps

Die Waldschänke …

After a few days of good old Central European gray and drizzly skies, the sun burst forth on Monday morning, so we headed up the hill to a local Waldschänke — a mountainside eatery that’s favored by hikers seeking a view over the broad Danube Valley around Linz. Don’t get me wrong. This isn’t the type of place that requires hours of strenuous slogging — more like a short walk up a country lane through farmyards and orchards, just enough exercise to work up a bit of an appetite for some country cooking.


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