Country Roads Take Me Home

Lately, I have wondered if God were my D.J. At the exact moment I need to hear a song, Pandora, Whole Foods, or some random person selects the song with the appropriate message. During the last two weeks, I have heard John Denver’s Country Road two times. I am not from West Virginia, yet the song reminds me of my old Central Valley home town. The day after hearing the song a second time, my favorite Fresno County farmers told me to visit the Fresno County Blossom Festival. NOW!

Fresno County Blossom Trail-4702

On my good days, I trust that God and farmers will feed my soul and nourish my body. I am grateful that I listened last week. I woke up two hours before sunrise Wednesday morning, turned on the radio, turned onto the interstate and headed for the country roads. As the sun rose,  “I (could) hear her voice, in the morning hour.” Fresno called me… taking me home.

 (bryan farley)

People who are not from Fresno joke about our town, and if I seem a little defensive, I am. I do not find the jokes funny. I joke that if you are from Fresno and you do not have a chip on your shoulder, you are not really from Fresno… or you have not grown up.  I find this especially true for those of us who have left. We must defend ourselves away from Fresno and when we return and our old friends or our old selves ask, “Does he drive the interstate, or does he take them old back roads?” I drive both.

 (bryan farley)

When I left Fresno for Santa Barbara, I found that I missed the seasons. I missed summer and fall. I missed the thick valley fog. I definitely missed this time of year. In addition to Lent, this is Blossom Season. Lent and Blossom Season are similar. Both seasons are times of uncertainty and both offer a promise of  a better time.

 (bryan farley)

People who are not from The Valley, might think we are simple folk who all post Bible signs on telephone poles. Few of us believe we have all the answers and most of us understand that there is something greater than ourselves… call it what you will. God, The Universe… or the time when one can feel the winter giving way to warm.

See the Fresno County Blossom Trail Photo Gallery.

Comments

comments

26 Responses to “Country Roads Take Me Home”

  1. Karen Clark says:

    This blog and the pictures are really beautiful. I am born and raised in Fresno and am tired of it but your pictures and words remind me of the good things about home. Keep writing and keep posting pictures!

  2. [Comment imported from blog]

  3. Bryan Farley says:

    [Comment imported from blog]

  4. bryan farley says:

    Thank you Karen,

    I had to leave to appreciate the area. I am glad that I can help others see what I now miss.

    When I drove to Fresno Wednesday morning, I took the highway from Interstate 5 through Los Banos. Just as day broke, there was a large bright orange disk on the eastern horizon. It was huge! I did not recognize the sunrise.

    After ten minutes, the sun became normal again, but for about ten minutes it was amazing.

    Looking forward to my next trip with a camera, my radio and a little time.

    bf

  5. [Comment imported from blog]

  6. Bryan Farley says:

    [Comment imported from blog]

  7. [Comment imported from blog]

  8. Bryan Farley says:

    Lynette Brondstater-Carlisle I intended “home” as a state of mind as well as a place. (I realized when I saw your name that you have a place in West Virginia, the location in the John Denver Country Road song.) For me, home is a place where I can find answers and people who can help me understand myself when I am confused. Lately, I have been struggling with a few big questions. “Home” was necessary.

  9. [Comment imported from blog]

  10. [Comment imported from blog]
    March 18, 2013
    7:31 pm
    Fumbling with my reply…

  11. Carol Egoian says:

    So glad you got to see the blossoms in time. The pictures are great!

  12. Carol Egoian said:

    So glad you got to see the blossoms in time. The pictures are great!

    at 9:36 am on March 31, 2013

    [Comment imported]

  13. Bryan Farley says:

    Thank you Carol Egoian. For those who were wondering, you were one of the “favorite Fresno County farmers” who told me to visit the blossoms while they were blooming. I also went last week and photographed some of the same places fifteen days after the first visit. It was amazing how much had changed. Do you have any suggestions for my next Valley farm shoot?

  14. Bryan Farley said:

    Thank you Carol Egoian. For those who were wondering, you were one of the “favorite Fresno County farmers” who told me to visit the blossoms while they were blooming. I also went last week and photographed some of the same places fifteen days after the first visit. It was amazing how much had changed. Do you have any suggestions for my next Valley farm shoot?

    at 12:10 pm on March 31, 2013

    [Comment imported]

  15. Carol Egoian says:

    The kings river will be rising as the snow melts…a float down might give you some action shots. Whitney Egoian might have more suggestions.

  16. Carol Egoian said:

    The kings river will be rising as the snow melts…a float down might give you some action shots. Whitney Egoian might have more suggestions.

    at 10:21 am on April 7, 2013

    [Comment imported]

  17. Bryan Farley says:

    Carol Egoian Thank you for the advice. I have mixed memories of the Kings River from my childhood so it might be time to float down with a camera and repair memories. This year I even avoided the river despite driving past it several times. I will also ask Whitney.

  18. Bryan Farley says:

    Carol Egoian Thank you for the advice. I have mixed memories of the Kings River from my childhood so it might be time to float down with a camera and repair memories. This year I even avoided the river despite driving past it several times. I will also ask Whitney.

  19. Bryan Farley said:

    Carol Egoian Thank you for the advice. I have mixed memories of the Kings River from my childhood so it might be time to float down with a camera and repair memories. This year I even avoided the river despite driving past it several times. I will also ask Whitney.

    at 9:30 pm on April 9, 2013

    [Comment imported]

  20. […] beginning of Spring is the end of blossom season… but it is the beginning of Spring. When I photographed the blossoms two weeks earlier, the sky was full of trails and clouds. The trees also had fewer leaves and more blossoms. Two […]

  21. Theme Songs for a Simple Man Life or Bad Company Funeral | Bryan Farley Photography Educator said:

    […] beginning of Spring is the end of blossom season… but it is the beginning of Spring. When I photographed the blossoms two weeks earlier, the sky was full of trails and clouds. The trees also had fewer leaves and more blossoms. Two […]

    at 11:56 pm on April 10, 2013

    [Comment imported]

  22. Theme Songs for a Simple Man Life or Bad Company Funeral | Bryan Farley Photography Educator said:

    […] beginning of Spring is the end of blossom season… but it is the beginning of Spring. When I photographed the blossoms two weeks earlier, the sky was full of trails and clouds. The trees also had fewer leaves and more blossoms. Two […]

    at 11:56 pm on April 10, 2013

    [Comment imported]

  23. Bryan Farley says:

    Theme Songs for a Simple Man Life or Bad Company Funeral | Bryan Farley Photography Educator said:

    […] beginning of Spring is the end of blossom season… but it is the beginning of Spring. When I photographed the blossoms two weeks earlier, the sky was full of trails and clouds. The trees also had fewer leaves and more blossoms. Two […]

    at 11:56 pm on April 10, 2013

    [Comment imported]

  24. Bryan Farley says:

    Theme Songs for a Simple Man Life or Bad Company Funeral | Bryan Farley Photography Educator said:

    […] beginning of Spring is the end of blossom season… but it is the beginning of Spring. When I photographed the blossoms two weeks earlier, the sky was full of trails and clouds. The trees also had fewer leaves and more blossoms. Two […]

    at 11:56 pm on April 10, 2013

    [Comment imported]

Leave a Reply