Wordless Wednesday

Close up shot of fern frond. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

Fern frond; seen on the Cascades path, Waitakere Ranges, Auckland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

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On birthdays, bugs and being grateful

Close-up shot of orange lily stamen coated in pollen. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

Lily stamen. Image: Su Leslie, 2017. Shot with Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 IS USM macro lens

Well the election gods haven’t (so far — hung parliament) come through with the new government I wanted for my birthday, AND I’ve managed to spend the last 36 hours feeling utterly miserable from a gastro-bug-thingy , BUT …

… the Big T floored me with a particularly thoughtful and wonderful birthday gift.

I’ve been dithering for ages about buying a macro lens, and now I am the ecstatic owner of a Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 IS USM macro lens. I’m a bit hopeless with technical terminology, but even from my first experiments, I can tell this lens is seriously cool.

Unknown micro-plant with slender stem and large overhanging oval seed heads or flowers. Seen growing in ponga logs, Waitakere Ranges, Auckland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

I have no idea what these are, but I found them growing out of punga (silver tree fern) logs in the Waitakere Ranges. The tallest stem was about 5cm. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

Unknown micro-plant with slender stem and large overhanging oval seed heads or flowers. Seen growing in punga logs, Waitakere Ranges, Auckland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

Otherworldly. Unknown micro-plant found growing in punga logs, Waitakere Ranges, Auckland, NZ. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

As my interest in photography has grown, I’m turning my lens more and more on nature, and particularly on the tiny details. In a world that I find increasingly — well, scary — I am comforted and sustained by the beauty and resilience of the smallest life forms.

And by the love of the good people like the Big T. And not just for the awesome gift — I’m even more grateful for his thoughtful compassion and nursing skills — especially at 3am when I’m sick and grumpy and, frankly, stink.

The most beautiful moment

"The flower is the moment we live. The perfect moment." Close-up image of white apple blossom against blurred background. Image: Su Leslie, 2017

“The flower is the moment that we live … The most beautiful moment.” Image: Su Leslie, 2017

A plant has a circle. The seed becomes a plant which has a flower … it transforms into a fruit and the fruit drops. There’s another seed and the seed grows again. This is a circle. The flower is the moment that we live. The most beautiful moment of the circle. The most beautiful moment.Alex Atala, chef.

The road-bumps my family’s been experiencing lately show no signs of disappearing, and it looks as though travelling a new, more difficult road might be the new normal — at least for a while.

If I sound cryptic, then my apologies. Some stories are not really mine to share, even though I’m a character in them.

It is amazing though, how having to raise my head to new horizons also allows me to appreciate much more the simple beauty around me.

I heard the quote above on Chef’s Table last night and was moved almost to tears.

Here it is in context: