The “Before I die…” wall

I’d heard about this interactive art exhibit for years.  They pop up and are there for a brief time.

And then I came across one in Chattanooga, tucked away in a corner.  I almost missed it.  It was dark, I was tired.  I told my husband that we should come back tomorrow in the daylight.  He talked me into turning the car around and going to see this right then.

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It isn’t exactly on the main path.  Here is the view of the area from Google street view from above.  The wall is approximately in the middle. It is to the left of the bridge.  This is near Coolidge Park, but not part of it.  It is at the blue square, which is a roof for some machinery.

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Here is a view from street images from February 2017, showing the wall in the daylight before the exhibit.  This is a short walk from Sushi Nabe – a very good Japanese restaurant in Chattanooga that is also off the beaten path and worth finding.

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This exhibit was unveiled July 21st, 2017, and is sponsored by Hospice of Chattanooga.  Tracy Wood, CEO of Hospice, said that the goal was to create an opportunity for Chattanoogans to think about life and live every day as if it were their last.

According to the Before I Die website “Over 2,000 walls have been created in over 70 countries and over 35 languages…..The original wall was created on an abandoned house in New Orleans by artist Candy Chang after the death of someone she loved.

Here is the banner attached to the exhibit to explain it.

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Here are some of the photos I took of it.

 

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Several simply said “LIVE”

 

A few defined that as “Sky dive”

Several wanted to travel – namely to France, or Japan, or New Zealand.

Several wanted to marry  – some naming the person.  I wonder if they proposed at the wall?

Some were funny –

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And the last one that I saw was poignant –

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Saying simply “I want to live a clean a sober life” – and dated that day.  I paused, remembering my own struggle to get clean and sober.  I prayed for this anonymous stranger to have strength.  Sobriety is hard but it makes life much more meaningful.  A life spent messed up isn’t really experienced at all.

What would you write on the wall?

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My butterfly collection

All found near Nashville, TN, mostly in Old Hickory Village, on lantana and butterfly bush.  I believe that the best butterfly collection leaves the butterflies alive.

 

Black Swallowtail

 

Cloudless Sulphur

cloudless sulphur

Gulf Fritillary

Gulf Fritillary

Monarch


Painted Lady

 

Pipevine Swallowtail

 

Red Spotted Purple

Red spotted purple

 

Silver Spotted Skipper

silver spotted skipper

Snout Butterfly

snout butterfly

Variegated Fritillary

Variegated fritillary

Zebra Swallowtail

zebra swallowtail

Blue like sci-fi

From a visual conversation I had online about blue characters in sci-fi. Can you add to this?

From The Fifth Element –

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From Avatar –

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From Star Wars –

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From X-men –

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From Farscape –

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And then the conversation veered off Sci-Fi to popular culture. I’m not even sure who this guy is.

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From Charlie and the Chocolate Factory –

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From Sesame Street.

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So is there a comparable selection of monochromatic characters in other colors?  Please share!

 

My door collection

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At 88 Kitchen – a Chinese buffet in Madison, TN

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Lindsley Avenue Church of Christ (near the Howard School Building)

 

cookeville

Downtown Cookeville, TN

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Ferdinand, IN  – at Monastery Immaculate Conception

 

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Super solid door in the bathroom at Henry Horton state park, TN

 

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At Sewanee – a college on Monteagle Mountain.  A very narrow door outside of a classroom – an emergency exit?  You’d have to be skinny.

 

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At Sewanee – under the stairs in a building with classrooms.  A tiny hatch.

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At Sewanee – a very tall and very narrow door.   A supply closet?  A professor’s office?

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At Sewanee – the entrance to a bathroom.  Almost TARDIS like – it was bigger on the inside.  Very hard to get in, though – the sink was very close to the door.

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Outside Tulip grove elementary school – a utility building?  A tiny metal door.

 

—–

LLanthony, Wales. An abandoned priory.

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Tintagel, Cornwall

tintagel

Atop the Glastonbury Tor
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A tiny door – at the Frist art museum, part of the “Woman on the Run” exhibit by Tracey Snelling.

 

Privet

This is privet.  It is a woody plant.  In certain situations it is an invasive weed.

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Yet when planted intentionally and carefully cultivated, it is a hedge, a living wall.

The same thing can be “good” or “bad” depending on where it is, and how much of it is there.

Too much water is just as bad as too little. Too much water in the wrong place can be devastating.

A hedge can be low –

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…or high.  It can keep people out…

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…or let them in.

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It can even be shaped into a maze, where you can let people in, but they have to find their own way out. (Hint – pick a side, left or right, and follow that exclusively.)

privet-lab

What would be at the center of your maze?

Would you make your privet into a wall to keep people out?

How high would you let it grow?

How long are you willing to wait for that?  It can take a decade to make an impenetrable.

Will people notice that you are growing a barrier, or will it be a surprise to them?

Will they step over it in the meantime?

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(All pictures are from the internet. Used for illustrative purposes.)

 

 

Fall is coming

It is good to slow down and watch the seasons change right before your eyes.  Ideally, I’d take this picture every day at the same time, but my lunch schedule doesn’t permit it.  So noon and 2 it will be.

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tree12pm101916 Noon, Wednesday 10/19/16

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2 pm, Thursday 10/20/16, after a storm

And then I run into a dilemma – I’m off this next week.  But if I don’t take a photo of this every day, I’ll miss it. This isn’t as forgiving as the “Tuesday Buffet” series I did.

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2 pm, Friday 10/21/16

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2pm, Sunday 10/23/16

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2 pm, Monday 10/24/16

It doesn’t seem like it is changing very fast.  So do I need to take a picture every day?  But – if I don’t try, I won’t be able to go back and fill in that gap.  However – art must serve the artist, not the other way around.  If this isn’t fun to me, but work, then it defeats the purpose.

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2 pm, Wednesday 10/26/16

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12pm Saturday 10/29/16

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12 pm Monday 10/31/16

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2pm Tuesday 11/1/16

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12pm Wednesday 11/02/16

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12pm Saturday 11/05/16

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12 pm Monday 11/07/16

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12pm Wednesday 11/09/16

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2pm Thursday 11/10/16

Off four days, did not come up here to take pictures.

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2 pm Tuesday 11/15/16

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12pm Wednesday 11/16/16

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2pm Thursday 11/17/16

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12 pm Saturday 11/19/16

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2 pm Tuesday 11/22/16

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12 pm Wednesday 11/23/16

A rainy and windy day.  I drove here rather than walk so I didn’t get stuck outside in a storm.

And then it was Thanksgiving break, so I missed 4 days.  I almost skipped Monday as well because I was off to tutor for the second time this school year.  But a lot has happened, so I had to.

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12 Monday 11/28/16

We had a big storm with 50MPH winds on Monday night. Leaves are everywhere and finally there is the smell of late autumn – wet leaves decaying.

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2pm Tuesday 11/29/16

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12pm Wednesday 11/30/16

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2pm Thursday 12/01/16

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12pm Saturday 12/03/16

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12pm Monday 12/05/16

Since you can barely see any more leaves on it, I’ve decided to post this. Perhaps I’ll do a Winter, Spring, and Summer series too.

Monastery Immaculate Conception

150 Sisters of Saint Benedict live in community in Ferdinand, Indiana.  Here are some pictures I took when I went on a silent retreat there.

I hope you are in good shape if you go there.  The dormitory is downhill from everything else – dining hall, the chapel…and there are over 70 steps to get there.

There is a way to get where you need to go if the weather is bad.  There can be some pretty impressive snowfalls in Indiana, so there are tunnels all over this complex. They can be a bit damp, however.

Here’s one of the places you are headed to – the dining hall.  The food is served cafeteria style, and guests and nuns eat the same food.  They keep a separate eating area for us so we can be silent. The nuns are quite chatty and amiable, and while that is nice, it is hard if you are trying to have a silent retreat.

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Some scenes in the dormitory.

In my room, I made  little votive shrine of the saint cards I bought at the gift shop.  All churches should have gift shops, in my opinion, and the Catholics do not disappoint in this regard.

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In the basement is a lounge area with a lot of recliners.  It is quite homey and inspires naps.  I wonder if the chairs came from the nuns when they entered and had to give up all their possessions?

There is a statue of a young Mary with Jesus in the basement dining area – I’ve seen the same statue, painted, at a Sisters of Mercy convent.

There are some other interesting things in the dormitory that seem very old.

The various services were quite confusing.  We were fortunate that the nuns understood and took the time to set up our prayer books for us so we could follow along without getting lost.  They recite the office of the hours several times a day. Note all the different bookmarks – this is for just one service.

 

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The pews were cleverly designed – you could create your own bookstand. This is closed, and then open.

Here is the pew-side view of the service.  The nun who helped us at this one is sitting in front of me on the right.  They no longer wear their habits. But you can still tell they are nuns by their kindness.  They have a sort of inner glow.

More of their impressive chapel – the baptismal font is the first thing you notice (on purpose).  Ideally, it is always in line with the table where the Lord’s supper is celebrated. This unites the two sacraments.

 

Views from outside the chapel, and the grounds.

I was especially enamored of this corner, and took the time to sketch it. It looks a little strange broken up like this, but I didn’t know my phone could do panoramas at this point. While sketching, some nuns noticed me and started to ask me questions.  They thought that I should stay with them.  I’m not sure how that would work out since I’m married, not a Catholic, and past their age requirement for entry. But it was kind of them to see a calling in me.