A map of Old Lebanon Dirt Road

I like to take the scenic route to Centering Prayer.  It is calming, which puts me in the right frame of mind.  Otherwise I have to take the freeway, which is the exact opposite.  It is faster, but while I gain time, I lose my calm.  Taking the back road makes me feel like I have traveled back in time.

There are little areas along the way, little milestones. I’d like to share them with you.

This is traveling to Centering Prayer, so I am traveling East. (All images are from Google Maps)




The tulip Grove intersection.


A wall of trees that are cut.


The dangerous left-hand curve.

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The graveyard on the left.

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The slope that reminds me of Grandfather or Beech mountain.

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The circle B.

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The rocks as a wall.

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The big empty field.

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The black metal gate on the right.

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Global vision Bible Church.

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The nice little forest.

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The stacked wall at the bridge.

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The sometimes goat farm.

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The outcropping of rocks left and right.

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The chicken farm on the left.

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The chicken mailbox on the right (2814).

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The straightaway with the sign that says “Blessed” (This sign is here now, but not in this picture)

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The wall of trees on the left.

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The gray dry land.

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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.

wall above

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.

wall before

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?


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


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 –


From Avatar –


From Star Wars –


From X-men –


From Farscape –


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


From Charlie and the Chocolate Factory –


From Sesame Street.



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


My door collection


At 88 Kitchen – a Chinese buffet in Madison, TN


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



Downtown Cookeville, TN


Ferdinand, IN  – at Monastery Immaculate Conception



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



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



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


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


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.


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



LLanthony, Wales. An abandoned priory.


Tintagel, Cornwall


Atop the Glastonbury Tor


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



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


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 –


…or high.  It can keep people out…


…or let them in.


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.)


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?


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



Invisible street

This is a place that doesn’t exist. It could, and perhaps it was supposed to, but it doesn’t yet – exist. This is in Old Hickory – a suburb of Nashville, TN.

I first noticed it while on a walk. At the intersection of Jones and 9th, the road stops and there is nothing. Not a house, not a permanent structure. There’s a large fence, and you can see a garage top.  It is a gap.  It is not an empty lot.  Looking to the North-West.


Here’s the end of the road seen from here, turning to your right if you were facing North. Looking East.


So I looked online. It is amazing what patterns appear when you look at things from a different perspective.

Here’s Google maps – Street


And Earth.


Notice that there isn’t a single house between the “ends” of 9th. There are garages. The road could be continued.  Here’s a closer view –


Notice that there is space behind the houses.  There are fences, but there is space between the fences, going vertically. The yards don’t butt up next to each other.  This creates an alleyway of sorts. This is true on all three vertical neighborhood blocks that you can see in the Earth picture. You can notice it somewhat on the Street picture, but it isn’t as pronounced.

Here is the end of the alleyway from 10th.  Looking North.


And here it is from 8th.  Looking South.


And here is the other side of the gap from Cleves, looking East.


I wonder if neighborhood children see this empty space and take advantage of it to cut through behind the houses without being seen.  I also wonder if I’d get in trouble exploring here.  Probably.  So I explore virtually.