Saturday, April 29, 2006

A Slice of Life and Golden Orbs

It's strange having Katie here with us. Different. I imagine if it were all the time it would be different too. Now, it feels like we have to, not so much entertain her, but consider her. I don't know what she likes to eat. I don't know what she likes to do. So I think, well, she'll eat what we eat and she'll do what we do. So, Saturday morning we take a walk around the 'hood, followed by (what is a rarity these "fit" days) breakfast at Millie's, then a stroll over to the Farmer's Market before trekking on home.

As they don't allow dogs in the market, Will took Shadow and headed over to the slice of park to sit and wait at the fountain, while Katie hesitated, not knowing which direction she wanted to go. With Dad and Shadow to sit in the grass? Or into the market with me? She came with me. I was glad. We strolled and I asked her if she wanted some juice. She answered shyly and very politely "No thank you". Cute. She tagged along as I handled and bagged some produce.

I chatted momentarily with a man at a stall selling African carvings. Something in his features and demeanor made me think that he was not American born. There was a soulfulness in the eyes, a gentleness in the smile. I asked him where he was from.

"West Africa" he told me.

I told him I had been to East Africa; Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda and Zanzibar.

"How many times? Once?" he asked.

"Twice" I said.

"And will you go back again?" he asked.

"Yes. Definitely. It's beautiful country." And I let my fingers trail along a couple of the carving as if to feel the warmth of the African sun on their surface.

I'm enjoying the market with Katie on my heals and Africa at my fingertips.
I told Katie we had one more stop at the flower stall and we picked out some blooming stalks of lilies, snap dragons and golden orbs of some sort to adorn the piano.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Inspiration Point, Mt. Lowe

8 hours on the mountain.
11.7 miles. 2600 foot elevation gain. We were way up there and back two canyons. Beautiful trail. Too beat to go on about it tonight.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Duly Blessed and Flower Powered

Our third pilgrimage to the day-before-Easter event at the Olvera Street Plaza that began here in 1930. Buster was flower powered and a big hit as always. The usual suspects were there with any number of shivering Chihuahuas, baskets full o’ pups and exotics of all kinds. I’m a sucker for animals, big and small, and this puppy pit bull was a sweetie-pie. Before we could begin the procession, our Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was introduced and he took the platform speaching away like crazy. Once the politicking was over the Cardinal came on board, said a prayer for all the animals, released a flock of doves into the Southern California skies, then let the holy water fly.

Duly blessed we beelined it over to a patio table at El Paseo Inn for Margaritas and lunch. The sun was out as we ate and drank and listened to Mariachis and watched the procession of the usual suspects pass us by.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Ashes and Snow Exhibit

After breakfast at the Sidewalk Cafe on the waterfront of Venice BeachWill and I walked up to the Santa Monica Pier to see the Ashes and Snow exhibit. The "gallery" is built of shipping containers.
The images by Canadian photographer and film maker, Gregory Colbert, of man and beast define the beauty of art as art exists in nature and all living beings and animals. From the cheetah to the elephant, it's as if they understand that no harm will come to them and respect each other.
A wondrous exhibit and a gorgeous sunny day in Southern California.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Today's Mission

Our walk today had a mission as our good freind Cybele said we could drop by and score a couple of Valomilk's from her. Understanding their delicate constitution, Will gingerly wrapped them in a green bandana and gently stowed them in his oversized pant pocket for the rest of the walk.We walked through the latest art installation on Silver Lake Bloulevard. Then wondered around the Monkeysomething toy shop, which was full of all kinds of neat handmade toys and art.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Why I Love My Husband So

The flowers in my office. My co-workers will periodically stop by and ask "Is this Conrad's?"Why I love my husband so.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

@---^---- (a rose)

Actually 2 dozen long stemmed red roses, and lilies and sunflowers, and daisies, and more. Many more.

As I opened the door to my office this morning I was greeted with 4 vases sitting along my desk and credenza brimming with flowers, and a hand made card in front of my monitor and a single red rose next to it. I took it all in and breathed in the heady scent, then called my husband.

"Happy Birthday" he said.

Apparently he, and his accomplice Tigre (my coworker) had a plan. After I left work yesterday, he was on his way to my office when Tigre gave him the call that the coast was clear. A set up. A sting. A surprise. A grand gesture. A gesture of love.

Thank you sweetie. I love you too.

Throughout the day I find it difficult to focus, intoxicated by the scent of roses that fill my office.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Rolling in the Grass

It's been a busy week. I look at my blog and wish I had more time to post. And if the weekends aren't already short enough, I had to go in to the office on Saturday, so to have it cut even shorter doesn't make me happy. It's been raining lately and breezy, but this morning the skies were clear and the air warm. I walked out the back door to see the Lillys blooming, and other plants are budding, soon to be abloom. The spectacular blue flowering shrub above is from a neighboring house. I wanted to take a walk up to Bellevue Park so husband and dog and I headed out this morning after breakfast for a 3-mile walk. Will wanted to check out the avocado tree around the corner to see if any other fruit had fallen from its limbs.

I love walking through the neighborhood, taking paths I haven't taken before, peering through fences to see what I can see. So when I saw the alley across the street I suggested we take it through to Bellevue on the other side. About half way down the pavement ended and nature took over. We were traipsing through dewey wet grass taller than Shadow.

We passed citrus trees, and more avocado trees, and banana trees with clusters of young green fruit, not yet ripe. Definitely have to come back and harvest some of those.
Arriving at Bellevue Park we entered and meandered through the picnic area and along the jogging path. It's a really nice park. And I like that they have a few BBQs set up, plenty of grassy knolls and burms for kids to roll down and get all itchy, and big mature trees just right for climbing. When I was a kid I spent a lot of time at the park down the street from our house on Louise Avenue in Lynwood. (Funny, that's about the only street name that I remember growing up. I don't think I can name one other street I've lived on). A neighborhood park like this one with grassy knolls and burms, and we loved to roll down 'em, getting itchy from the grass. One summer my brother and I entered a roller skating race at the park. My brother still had the clamp-on kind of skates that you tightened to the soles of your shoes with a skate key (like thses) and all the other kids had those fancy new shoe skates, and my brother still won the race, and he probably still has the medal.