Thursday, May 24, 2007

Packing up, flying away...

Here's Oblio enjoying the mess of my stuff to take.....

Getting packed for my trip to Penland. It's strange...
I can usually pack very easily for a three week trip
and tuck everything into a small light!
I only take the small backpack---easy to carry. I've
learned one thing from traveling from AK to anywhere
else in the world: If I check luggage, I lose luggage.

This time, it's proving to be more difficult to pack light.
I'll be in school, but in a rugged setting. I'll be in dorms, but
there is no laundry. How much should I really bring
for only 2 weeks? The biggest dilemna is shoes. I want
to bring far too many pairs....
I always travel with my hiking boots. They aren't the
lightest footwear, or the most attractive, but they are,
by far, the most practical.

I keep thinking of the story Bugheart told me about
being in D.C.'s National Airport when the Twin Towers
were hit by the first plane and the panic that ensued.
A few thousand people running and screaming through
the airport, no one knowing where to go or what to do.
Fucking scary.
Knowing Bugheart, I bet she kept a cool head.

I think of that story everytime I travel, now.
I think: If I need to run, I can't be wearing my slippery
little Danskos....I gotta have my hiking boots and be
prepared for anything. They're hell to deal with at the
security checkpoints---all that unlacing!

If you recall, I did a post about traveling to Seattle and
Hawaii several months back. I had the same dilemna:
hiking boots or no hiking boots?
Several readers weighed in on the 'nay' side---but
I brought them anyway, and was so glad I did. We
walked miles in Seattle and my feet would've killed
me in any other shoes.....

I had a dinner party last night....just wanted to hang out
with friends before I left. Also, it was the only way to
force myself to do some major spring cleaning....knowing
that people would actually see my house.
I also drank a couple of strong head is a little
groggy and I have so much to do today!

I hope to post from Penland.....there'll be computers I can

I'll close with this image of my most recent painting,
"Bowl, Bird, Bone."
Getting back to using recognizable imagry! Fun!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

One Ruby, 25 Years, Fifty Dollars and a Happy Mother

When I was ten, my Mom lost a ruby from one of her rings.
She realized it was gone while she was at work. She called
home and told my sister and I that if we searched the house
for it, she would give $25.00 to whomever found it. (BIG
money for a ten year old!) We searched and searched and
searched the house! While we did this, my mom turned
over her office looking for the missing gem. She then
realized that she'd stopped at the post office on her way
to work, so she went there and looked at every square inch
of floor.
While my sister was scouring the living room and looking
under every cushion on every piece of furniture, I
looked in our mom's bedroom. I jumped on the bed
to look through the blankets and something bounced---
picking it up, I thought it was an apple seed. Then my
ten-year-old's mind registered that my mom never
at was the ruby! I won the $25.00 and my
sister was pissed.

But the story doesn't end there.

Four days ago, I was cleaning up the top soil on one of
my potted Dahlias. Something small glinted in the light
and picking it up, I found a small red gem....thinking it
was plastic, I set it aside on the deck to look at later.
I continued gardening, my mind ticking over this little,
bright thing I'd found in the dirt....and didn't it look just
like an apple seed?

I went back, collected the gem and called my mom.
"Remember when you lost your ruby?" I asked.
"Is there any chance you've lost one again?"
To our mutual amazement, she HAD lost the ruby---again---
and I'd found it---again!

She told me that she'd been in the garage this winter and had
accidentally hit her ring on the edge of the counter, shearing
off the entire setting. (My sensitive perennials, including 3 big
dahlia pots were overintering in there...) She told me that she
was sick to have damaged the ring because it was one of her
favorites and that my father had given it to her.

She was totally thrilled that I'd found the ruby. My sister
and I met up at mom's house to make the exchange....

One ruby for another $25.00 check! I said that
I didn't need it this time around, but I'd accept it for
the beauty of coincidence and symmetry!

My mom holding the ruby.
(See where I got my hard-working little gorilla hands?)

Monday, May 21, 2007


Just have to post about this flower.....

My Oriental Lily, "Aruba." HUGE blossoms---this one is
about 8" across. It has this fascinating fragrance that is
something like vanilla, cinnamon and......heaven? It 'breathes'
more of it's scent in the cool of evening. I've had this lily for
4 years now, carefully overwintering it in a pot in a +40F
environment for 5 of the winter months. (I'm sure the
bulbs are the size of footballs by now...) Every year, it
comes back stronger and bigger. Yay! This year, there are
three stalks, 14 blossoms opening in slow succession and
the stalks are 6' tall....I kid you not.
It's just sooooo beautiful. I'm having a dinner party in a
couple of days so a few friends can witness it's lovliness.

I'm spending my days getting ready for my trip to Penland.
My job is over for now, so I am packing, cleaning house
and making wild concoctions for Fromage's dinner.
Above is a picture of Pad Po Tak, a Thai dish I made
with ginger, garlic, lemon grass, scallops, shrimp, mussels
and cod. It was fu*&ing great! I LOOOOOOOVE shellfish.

Seven little known facts about me....

Finally! I am tagged! I've seen the "Seven Facts" meme travelling around the blogosphere for ages and I finally saw it at Needle's Edge---and begged her to tag me. What fun----you know how I love here goes!

"Each person tagged gives seven random facts about themselves. Those tagged need to write on their blogs seven facts, as well as the rules of the game. You need to tag seven others and list their names on your blog. You have to leave those you plan on tagging a note in their comments so they know that they have been tagged and need to read your blog".

Seven Facts About Eero...
1. I dreamed about shoes and shoe shopping for about 15 years. Not every night mind you, but just about. Usually, I was in some huge thrift store searching for the perfect pair of shoes or boots---I knew them when I saw them, of course---and the dreams took on several different patterns. In one scenario, I'd find the perfect shoe and spend the rest of the interminable dream searching for it's mate. In another scenario, I'd find the perfect shoes but they didn't fit. In yet another variation, I would find the shoes, but on my way to pay for them, winding my way through the labyrinth of the store, the shoes would turn into hideous orange bowling shoes or something....
The shoe dreams tapered off when I was around 30 or so.

2. I legally changed my middle name to the name I would have been given if I had been born male.

3. I am not afraid of bees in the slightest. I attribute this to one terrible night when I was 15. I went out to my mom's storage shed to get a small suitcase for a trip we were taking. I saw a small canvas case on top of a pile of boxes, laying on it's side. I unzipped it and pulled it open. Unbeknownst to me, the suitcase had been laying there all summer and black and white hornets had built a mammoth nest inside, filling the interior. When I opened the case, I tore the nest in half. The angry bees swarmed out so fast and hard that I actually felt the impact of their combined fury hit my chest. They began stinging me at once---as I was wearing a loose shirt and skirt, they quickly found their way into my clothing. I ran into the house screaming my head off, already hysterical. My mom had to tackle me in the kitchen to keep me from crashing my way through the whole house. A dozen hornets followed me inside, now chasing my mother and sister around. Later, after the bees in the house were killed and I could speak coherently, my mom helped dress the stings and counted as she did----coming up with a final tally around 45. Since then, individual bees don't bother me at all. One sting? No big deal.

4. I have a shoe superstition. If a person takes off their shoes and puts them together but opposite than how they would be worn, it is VERY BAD JUJU. Left shoe goes to the left, right shoe on the right whether you are wearing them or not. If you switch them, the wearer or owner of the shoes will suffer something terrible somehow, in some way. I don't exactly know what, but I feel it every time I see shoes set down the wrong way. If I see Fromage's shoes set down wrong, I fix them immediately. I have been known to spend some time "fixing" the shoes at parties when no one is looking. I think it comes from reading a story when I was a little girl about a practice of dressing the dead. You put coins on their eyes so that they have money to pay the ferryman over the river Styx. You also switch the shoes on their feet so that if they come back to haunt as a malicious spirit, they won't find their way home. Putting your shoes down the wrong way is like calling the bad dead. Can't explain it any better than that.

5. I have a very special relationship with orange cats. I've had three orange, male cats in my life that have affected me profoundly and I've loved them each wonderfully. I think there will be many more to come in my future and I welcome them.

6. All of the very best friends I have ever had in my life are left-handed Sagittarians. Fromage, included.

7. I was once "caught in the act." My best friend Rebecca caught me having sex with my boyfriend on her couch. Seeing as it was a one room cabin and she had just walked in the front wasn't that hard to miss us. She said something like "Yikes!" and left. I was horrifically embarassed....but what can you do? We got dressed and I introduced them more, uh, formally.

And Now....
I tag: Bugheart, Minkett, Johnny, fpea, Dirt Diva, Up in AK, and Bike & Beer!