Saturday, July 17 – Yeah! Deck finished! One more major project and then done for a while. Hot, but the car kept Carol Gorman and me cool to and from IC for the Book City Festival. She guided me right in to a great parking place. “I grew up in IC, remember?” And, as we headed down the hill toward the River, I asked/said, “This is the hill that Chelsea and the Green Haired Kid rode down, isn’t it?” How did I know that?
As we entered Shambuagh Auditorium, I heard my name and turned to see Sarah Patterson (joke about her being my daughter from church connections) and the Cutsforths behind us. Earlier this week I mentioned thinking I am invisible. Yeah, right. Especially when during Lamaze days you met up with a family you had taught in the O’Hare airport – the general big part, not the “bound-for-CR part.” Invisible indeed.
Audrey Niffenegger , author of Time Traveler’s Wife, was an interesting speaker.
Low key, but with some funny lines. Dressed in black, stunning auburn/Celtic red hair. Skeletons were her passion as a kid and her website has an odd junction of a skeleton and a red-headed “Godiva” (her?). Was trained as a visual artist.
Some quotes/paraphrases: In her new book, Her Fearful Symmetry, The character dies in the first sentence. “That is a speed record even for me.” Quite a fascinating introduction that she read, so I will pick it up.
The intersection of reality and imagination. Must anchor story in a real setting so people identify. And, as Carol and I talked on the way down, meaningful observation to details. Audrey referred to the Newbery Library. Same one where Emma works and where Sarah Nelson will spend time at this summer?
Highgate Cemetery is pretty wild to look at and “enter.” Part of her story.
In graphic novels the artist leaves “spaces” for the reader to supply information and use imagination. Balance a work of art with joy and sadness. Be conscious and present. (Good motto to live by).
When choosing a project think of what experience you can have associated with it. Rich and I do this with writing. What can we do when visiting areas? With a given topic what else is out there of interest?
Six degrees of separation. On the way down, Carol spoke of how she revises and sometimes says, “Oh, the reader does not need to know that.” (Too much detail.) I inserted, like Tolstoy and Anna Karenina? She laughed. Boy we all read these books in high school and the tedious detail. Yikes! But, lovely stories. So, Audrey referenced this exact author and book in her speech. Wow! Was our conversation, “Foreshadowing”?
When asked how she writes, she quipped, “I am Sister Chaos.”
“You get to a different place when you do it slow.” She allows herself to be “taken in a new direction.” Sometimes her writing “got wiggier and wiggier.” Great phrase!
Carol and I were pretty starved at the end, so we went to a small cafe to eat and talk more. Her courses at Coe College in gender issues, her writing, my love of Idaho, Dan’s work in NYC. Then, at her home, views of the Rose of Sharon Tree. So wonderful to connect again, although too rarely, with such a dear person.
So, this is the end of the first half of summer break. “Change-over” is what we called it at camp. First half campers went home and second half arrived. The rest of the summer takes on a different format and feel. Busy but has been enjoyable so far.
Friday, July 16 – Oh, my did my shoulder ever hurt last night after using the crack filler for the drive because I press on the jug and bend over and the muscles all tighten and stay that way. So, after one ibuprofen and then a second, I took two more. By then I was loopy but could sleep. Cortisone shot and massage, but not in that area as the medicine acts like “meat tenderizer.” So Joan worked the neck, arm and back away from the shot. Let’s hope this and physical therapy work. Slow going. Painted deck with primer. Tomorrow before IC I’ll put on a top coat of paint. Yes, lots to do and now is the time to do things – time and weather in my favor. So, that is the way things are.
IC with Carol G should be fun to see the author of the Time Traveler’s Wife and Jane Smiley.
Hummingbirds sure slurp up the nectar and are not intimidated by the sander or people at all. Carolina Wrens making nest in my Swedish Ivy.
Lilies are happy and I have a picture in mind of the entrance to Sand Ridge . Also, the labyrinth is forming much more clearly in my mind.
Sauna time helps with clearing the mind and with letting ideas take form.
Thursday, July 15 – busy again with house projects. Used the crack filler on drive. wow! does that impact my arm and shoulder. Painted the living room trim. Have decided that friends and chocolate are similar. wonderful, refreshing, exhilarating at times, and too much too often is too much.
Thinking of the labyrinth out front and getting very excited.
Wednesday, July 14 – Wow! A Kansas summer day – strong south winds – but with humidity. Yuck! Worked early on the drive, did sauna – good down time, although I didn’t need to sweat anymore; went to Kramer’s Flower Farm and looked at their fabulous lilies. Came across three “must haves.” Basically, when I do anything I think of people who might enjoy the activity or who just come to mind. i.e. When I pass the sunflowers in the crack on 29th St SE I think of Mom who so enjoyed the sunflowers growing in the patio crack in Kennewick. When, I see the pretty yellow waterlily I think of Anne S. who has a good eye and camera for pictures. Galena brought to mind the Chicklets and things they like, even a funny statue for Rich he would enjoy. Today, Dave explained the names of the lilies and pointed out “Malachai.” Well, I know a little guy named Malachai whose birthday is in two weeks. So, I bought a lily and got it to his mom, who I had at KCC as a student. Then, Dave pointed out a pretty one, saying Sue really liked these when she sees them at Burger King. So, he said, “Steal one.” Well she found them legitimately so she didn’t have to. But, they call the lily, whose real name is “Pardon Me” “Burger King.” I thought of LS who buys a pop and fries there and where I find interesting rocks. She of the vegetarian mode. Then, Dave introduced me to “Cinnamon Roll.” Well, between the two – Burger King and Cinnamon Roll, which is LS favorite food, I think, I decided to get one each.
Her husband, JG, once said, “When I found out she was vegetarian, I thought she ate healthy food.” I replied that was my impression, too. Then, we both learned at different times of course, she loves junky food! Well, this cinnamon roll she can look at and JG can enjoy the Burger King. Well, Pardon Me.
Visited scout camp today. Hot but a great tour!
Tuesday, July 13 – Nicer day for weather. Got ready for staff/board picnic. What a nice group of people came! The kids had fun watching and feeding the chickens and were amazed at how Summer Bunny and Jumping Bean tag-team the digging project. Colton measured the tunnel and figured it goes under the fence. If they dig up, we are in trouble as they will escape. Tamara and Margaret commented about the movie Chicken Run and how we should make Chicken Run II where the chickens and rabbits team up to escape!
Pulled weeds from the cracks in the drive in preparation for sweeping and applying the filler in the cracks.
Physical Therapy working on the shoulder. Mary Beth at Sisters helps to stretch the joint. Gettin’ there.
Monday, July 12 – Oh ennui! Muggy, foggy, like a New England day. A sudden downpour dropped four inches at our house. My poor herb garden is drowned. I did exercise, set up saunas for the next several days, did
P.T. and didn’t cry after from hurting. Then, made pies for tomorrow, organized downstairs and found some wonderful rocks that I didn’t realize were in the boxes from Mom. Oh, well, there will be another time for geology. Wow, I am really tired, though, so I napped, read. Later Rich and I went to the welcoming of Abby ? (didn’t get the last name) of Cultural Allianace at Cedar Ridge Winery. Quite nice.
Rich is disgusted that Sunland area SE near Indian Creek maneuvered to have a dike put in. More water will be sent faster downstream. No care for communal action. It’s all about “me.”
This picture above elicits the poem by Carl Sandburg, “Fog.”
THE fog comes
on little cat feet.
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.
Sunday, July 11. Sluggish day. Hard to breathe. No O2 I am sure of it. Slo Mo cleaning, but it is done. The mystery I am reading is too scary for me. Maybe I’ll forgo the rest and get into something less stressful. I would be a good “Cowardly Lion” in Wizard of Oz. Later neighbors with four little kids came by to see the chickens and bunnies. Nice family.
Adele called. This is a hard week. Frank died two years ago on the 8th, his first wife many years ago on the 14th, and Mom three years ago on the 16th. Then, she had to put down her little dog, Lexie, last year in July. A new generation of children is coming along, and remembering our elders is important and more, their lives and how they influenced us.
A sudden rain that last an hour and a half, cleared the air. Hummingbirds and turkeys are back foraging.
While shopping, S. at customer service stopped me and said, “Since it is quiet here, I am going to tell you a story.” Then, she relayed how we know each other going way back to Gayla and Mike Newmeister days! I guess we went to their house to check her out for a sitter. “I hope you passed muster,” I exclaimed, quite embarrassed. “Oh yes.” And, I always think I am so invisible. But, so many people seem to know me and have run into me. Yikes!
I heard the Owl call my name last night. Hmmm. Wasn’t LS But, I recall hearing a thrush a few days before Mom died while up in the incredible mountains of Wyoming. It was almost like that. Or I am imagining because I am thinking of her.