Sunday, April 25, 2010

Space, the final frontier

I will never get over my amazement that we've come so far in our space program that we now get pictures like this.

The Hubble telescope by the way, just celebrated its 20th anniversary on Friday. I'm so old I remember when they sent instruments into space that performed one function and then died.

Friday, April 23, 2010

As the crow flies

I think I'm inadvertently taming a crow. I've taken to throwing the heels of my bread out on the lawn for the birds. In the beginning it was mostly the squirrels eating it, though I did occassionally see a mockingbird or little sparrow taking a chunk. Now I have a big old crow who has discovered the stash. For the last few days he has taken to swooping in and sitting in the tree where I throw the bread and loudly demanding I throw more out. Yesterday, I quietly told him there were still at least five chunks still on the ground and he should look a little harder. He looked at me, hopped onto the lawn and collected all five of them -- at once -- and flew off with them.

Oh and I keep forgetting to tell you about my exciting new find. There's a Goodwill store in the big city nearby, well about 40 minutes away, that has an outlet center. It's a crazy place. Never seen anything like it at the second hand stores. It's a huge space and the stuff is all thrown willy nilly in big flat bins that you have to dig through. They charge by the pound. It's like a treasure hunt. We spent about 20 minutes there and I walked out with a brand new fleece with a ESPN logo, an old Dana Girls mystery book from 1934, a newish silk scarf from Casual Corner and a funky wooden bead purse in perfect condition for $2.87 total. Want to go back there sometime and spend a whole day just digging through the bins.


Saturday, April 17, 2010

Pie in the sky

This has got to be the most honest commercial I've ever seen in my life. Hilarious.

And I just discovered that the little city has its own downtown webcam.

Oh and did you hear about this fireball in the sky? Apparently a small metor hitting our atmosphere. Would have liked to see that in person.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Little City Life

Not sure what was going on here. Some kind of reenactment last weekend. Couldn't quite hear what the guy was saying, but I assume he was talking about life during the colonial times since the cemetery dates back to the 1700s. Loved the contrast between the guy and the very modern young woman with the very red hair.

And this little girl was very bored standing at the entrance, I guess to establish the mood. She was thrilled when I asked if I could take her picture.

Probably should have joined the group but I was already tired out. I was on my way home from the County Convention.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Just Spring

I'm a little sad today. I'm missing a birthday party I would have liked to have been included in. But this cheered me up a bit. Not my favorite ee cummings poem, but I love the graphics they chose to go with it.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Little City Life

The heat wave is over, which was a good thing because it was cool enough to wear my black suit without looking weird when I went to the County Democratic Convention yesterday. It was good to have some human contact. And I met the local liberal blogger but he doesn't live that close. It's a big county. But I also met a woman about my age who lives in the little city and is a transplant from Vermont. Guess I'm going to join her local Senior Democrat club. Appears to be a few older people who meet once a month to socialize. Next meeting is Saturday at the Golden Corral breakfast buffet.

Meanwhile, even though the heat wave is over, the spring flowers are still racing through their cycle. Early bloomers are leafing out but the dogwoods are flowering along with the late tulips.

And just found this link to some really fun treehouses. If I ever get my own place, I want one of those.

Friday, April 09, 2010

Cross purposes

Crazy week punctuated by a telephone call at 1:30am a couple of nights ago. The phone woke me up. I looked at the clock. Huge adrenalin rush. Nobody calls me at this hour anymore. Figured somebody got badly hurt. Turned out to be a robocall from the county announcing a 81 year old Alzheimer's patient was wandering around town.

Of course I couldn't fall back to sleep for hours. Actually went downstairs and looked and up my street as long as I was awake. No sign of lost old guys. Still haven't caught up on the lost sleep. But on a brighter note, they did find the guy and I have a new picture of the little city. This was still in front of one of the big churches in town, a remmant of their Easter services I guess.

Very pretty in person. Even though the flowers were all wilted, the colors were still very cheery.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

The south is weird

One of the weirdest things about race relations in the south, that I've especially noticed since I moved to the little city which is more traditionally southern than where I used to live, is that blacks and whites seem to self-segregate. For instance there are two unisex beauty salons on the main street here, right next to each other. There's no signs in the window but one only has black people in it and one has only whites.

When I take my walks I occassionally end up on a street where only black people live, kind of a dividing line between neighborhoods. The black people on the porches look at me suspiciously. Some of the women even glare at me. No one returns my smile and nod. Even downtown, it's rare for a black person to return a friendly smile, although it occassionally happens there.

But I had a breakthrough of sorts yesterday. I went to pay my electric bill at city hall. I always pay in person because I don't trust the mail and they shut you off in a hot minute if you're late. There's never more than a couple of people in line usually. Yesterday there had to be at least 40 or 50 people. Line so long it snaked through the hallways. I ended up in a group of about six black women.

A half hour wait like that is more conducive to idle conversations so I initiated some. One woman behind me was worried her husband waiting in the hot car would be mad she was taking so long. Was afraid he wouldn't believe her about the line and think that she was just "running her mouth" with some friend.

After I paid, I had dropped off a couple of cans at the recycling bin next door to city hall that you can't recyle on the street. On the way back she was just pulling out and stopped her car to talk to me. Took a few seconds to figure out she needed confirmation about the line for her husband, which I duly gave in my best southern dialect. Think I saved her some trouble with her old man. She called me honey when she drove away. That felt pretty good.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Easter

Happy Easter to those who celebrate and a belated Happy Passover to my Jewish friends. Hope the Easter Bunny brought you lots of chocolate.  All I have is for you is this picture of one of my favorite yards in the hood. Picture doesn't really do all the different purple flowers in the lawn justice, although clicking to make it bigger may help. 

Hope everyone has a great day with good food, warm company and peace of mind. Don't eat all the jelly beans at once.  Adding, here's a gallery of spring flowers by a really good photographer and Bing Crosby singing Easter Parade.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Barefoot blogging

Finally got warm enough to take my socks off. I don't actually walk around outside barefoot because there's so many bumblebees around but I do in the house, which is pretty big since I've been wearing socks and felted slippers right up until two days ago. And in more good news, it was almost 90 degrees out there yesterday and the house stayed a comfy 70. Meanwhile, the flora keeps getting better outside. Some early iris.

And it's that time of year again at the Washington Post. They held their annual Peeps Diorama contest and the entries just get better every year. Kind of loved them all.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Around the hood

It's finally warming up here. Yesterday hit the high 70s and it's supposed to be in the 80s the rest of the week. It makes me very happy. Took a walk in the late afternoon yesterday and found this not far away.

If I ever have a place of my own, I want stairs just like this. And a patio with benches made of the same stuff. Reminds me of the Gaudi park in Barcelona.