Landscape, Seascape, and Mindscape

“For oft when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.”

– William Wordsworth

What can be retained in travels are the images etched in the mind…the thoughts and feelings they had evoked.  As time passes, we can still relive those moments as we extract the gems from our mindscape.

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These pilings once formed the foundations of houses built on the waters of Astoria. They are now resting posts for cormorants and gulls. Once useful for human settlement, they now blend in the natural seascape like mazes for the birds…still offering a haven of rest despite their weathered and beaten forms.

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The old and the new can co-exist in the elasticity of the mind.  The human imagination and creativity can reach boundless horizons, and connect timeless landscapes in the mind’s eye.

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Trolley in Astoria, Oregon

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Frank Gehry’s Disney Concert Hall in L.A.

Disney Concert Hall, L.A.

Photos taken by Arti of www.rippleeffects.wordpress.com,

October, 2007. All rights reserved.

To read more about Frank Gehry, the architect who designed the Disney Concert Hall, Click Here.

Hollywood loves Astoria

           

        Astoria, Oregon (1904)

 

After a nauseating night on rough sea sailing from Vancouver, I was relieved to plant my feet on solid ground the next day in historic Astoria, the oldest city in Oregon.  Lewis and Clark explored this area by the mouth of the Columbia River in 1805, and were impressed by the pristine river valley.  Six years later Fort Astoria was set up by the first American millionaire John Jacob Astor.  Since then, Astoria has been known for its rich fishery resources.  By the late 1800’s, it was basking in the fame of the “salmon-canning capital of the world”.  Today, this town of 10,000 lures tourists from land and sea to its serene setting, unique antiques and arts and crafts stores, character Victorian homes and rolling hills.

So, what does Asotria has to do with movies?  Lots.  Just as its link to the history of the Pacific Northwest and the Lewis and Clark Expedition, Astoria has a long history with Hollywood.  In 1908, the first movie made in Oregon, The Fisherman’s Bride, was shot in Astoria.  Well, that may not ring a bell, but since then, other more well known productions have also selected Asotria as location for filming.  These include: 

The Great Race (1965), The Black Stallion (1978), The Goonies (1984), Kindergarten Cop (1990), Free Willy (1992) & Free Willy II (1994), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles III (1992), Ring II (2004), and most recently, Into the Wild (2007)…just to name a few.

But what really caught my attention was the concert that I missed.  During a week in July of this year, there was the Astoria Festival of Music, held in the town’s Liberty Theater.  One of the highlights was the virtuoso violinist Elizabeth Pitcairn, performing John Corigliano’s Red Violin Chaconne, and yes, playing on her 1720 Mendelssohn Stradivarius, the very instrument that inspired the 1999 Academy Award winning film The Red Violin.  

Indeed, lots are happening in this small, serene town of 10,000.