Wednesday, October 29, 2008

New Poem

Return to owner, please

My mind is gone...
left with Ike
Blown out with the surge
gone with the leaves and birds.
Perhaps it will be found
among the soggy bits of dry wall,
broken twigs and branches
in the debris pile at my curb.
My sense of time and space
sits beneath the water's surface
like a sunken boat
leaving an emptiness among the bones
waiting for something
something safe and sure.
I should have labeled it, I know.
My Social Security number etched
upon the right temporal lobe.
Return to owner, please.

@Kay L. Cox

Monday, October 27, 2008

Halloween is just my absolute favorite of holidays. I love decorating for it and getting out my collection of witch hats and ghouls and I love greeting all the kids at the door. We are blessed with a neighborhood full of children and that is safe enough for them to go up and down the streets Trick or Treating. Parents are usually in the background with flash lights but what a creative tribe...some of the costumes are so imaginative that my artist heart just swells.
Saturday my grandaughter brought two of her friends over to create Halloween ATCs. We had so much fun and the kids stayed for hours . I love 5th graders...they can do so much and yet haven't gotten to the reticent "I am too grown up" stage to try something fun and new. Taylor and I had gone to Hobby Lobby and gathered up a couple more rubber stamps to add to my collection and some more stickers. I had cut out the cards from orange, black and white card stock and they delved right in. It was interesting to watch them work...John loved rubber stamping and whizzed along; Michelle loved collage and was quite selective in her choices working slowly as she experimented; Taylor's were a mix of stamping and collage and stickers. I gave them all official sleeves for their cards and baggies to cart them home. After cookies and a few phone calls from moms they hurried off on their bikes agreeing to meet today for their trading.
We leave for Charlotte day after tomorrow and I am excited to be spending my first Halloween with my other grandchildren. It will take us a day and a half or so to get there and we will be back home on the 11th. It will be fun to share election day with my son and his wife as they have been really active in support of Obama so we will have a lot to celebrate on Nov. 4. I'm hoping that Texas will return to being a Democratic state which it was for all the years I was growing up. How could one grow up in Austin and not be interested in politics? I think it is in the water and Molly Ivins, bless her departed soul, will vouch for me.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

More of Ike

In case anyone has forgotten us, this is a reminder that there are still thousands homeless and devastated by Hurrican Ike. This picture was taken this morning a couple of miles from my house on a street that runs along the Bay in my small community of Seabrook. Just one of many that were thrown off their piers or wiped out. Everyone seems to be at the mercy of FEMA who makes the decision on whether they can rebuild. It is hard to explain how or why some homes nearby seemed to come out unscathed while others are flattened or just flat disappeared. The clean-up and rebuilding will take years.
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Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Princess Star

Buchart Gardens

One of the highlights of the cruise for me was in Victoria, BC visiting Buchart Gardens. I could have spent days in there. This is a dahlia like none I had ever seen before. Some of the dahlias were the size of soccer balls...amazing. I would so love to go back to Victoria and spend a week. We only had a few hours so we had to breeze through the 53 acres.

More of the atrium

This is a close-up of the ceiling. On formal nights a photographer set up on the bottom floor and every evening there was a pianist playing.

The Princess Star

This ship is so beautiful. Amazing decor and so clean. This is a shot of the artrium...a little over the top, huh! Shops all around the second level and usually tables of vendor all around. Geez...who buys all that jewelry? Why would anyone buy diamonds on a cruise? They weren't even great bargains. There is a whole part of the female population that I've never been a part of and just don't get. It's been years and years and years since I have been to a "style show" and guess I've just developed my own sense of what I like to wear and feel good in. I love handmade clothes like Blue Fish and hang on to those wearing them for years and years and years.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Alaska rocks for Obama

This sign was near the entrance to the salmon hatchery where thousands of tourists go every day. Ha! We never saw any McCain/Palin signs anywhere in Alaska which makes me question just how popular is she?The salmon hatchery was very interesting as we learned how they gather salmon eggs, hatch them until they are about 6 inches long and then turn them loose after clipping a small dorsal fin near their tails. When fishing for salmon, it is okay to keep a hatchery salmon identified as such this way but one must throw back the wild salmon. The NY Times ran a picture of Sarah Palin, her daughter and their salmon catch spread before them. Three of the salmon were obviously wild. This woman does seem to do whatever she wants to whomever wherever. We saw lots of salmon in the fresh water creeks who were loosing skin and dying. Evidently the females lay eggs and then die and only the guys get to go back into the ocean. Another interesting bit of salmon trivia is that when leaving the ocean for the fresh water streams, they swim into a mix of brackish and fresh water where they rest for a while and physically adapt to the change growing different gills, etc. Then do the reverse when returning to the ocean. I was disappointed that we didn't see any whales but I did see a seal near Victoria, BC. We did see a brown bear on the road gathering berries when we toured on the Klondike Highway into the Yukon.
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Saturday October 11, 2008 - 12:15pm (CDT) Edit Delete Permanent Link 1 Comment
Leaving Tracy Arm for Juneau

It was amazing to me how this huge ship could turn around in this narrow channel but it was so fine as everyone got a view of the glacier and the ice flow.
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Saturday October 11, 2008 - 11:57am (CDT) Edit Delete Permanent Link 0 Comments
What a treat!

We arrived in Tracy Arm early in the morning to view the glacier and ordered a champagne breakfast served on our balcony. So all bundled up ( it was in the high 40s) we sipped and dined and thought we had died and gone to heaven. Then I remembered I'm not crazy about lox.
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Saturday October 11, 2008 - 11:36am (CDT) Edit Delete Permanent Link 0 Comments
The blue glacier

This was as close as we could get to the glacier up Tracy Arm as there was so much ice coming off of it. It is a lovely blue between these mountains and is melting at an alarming rate. Go soon as it may not be there in a few years thanks to global warming.
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Saturday October 11, 2008 - 11:29am (CDT) Edit Delete Permanent Link 1 Comment
Check out God's painting with light

Now here is a view!

Hey Sarah Palin (with lyrics/subtitles)

This pretty much says it all.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Was that a debate?

After last night, the Saturday Night Live clip seems not so funny after all.

Well, like everyone else I suppose, I watched the VP debate last night though I can hardly call it a debate. Palin was a huge disappointment. I thought she had more in her than that but I guess I set my expectations too high. I hear some had such low expectations that they were thrilled she didn't shoot herself in the foot. I felt I was watching a high schooler on her first debate team outing. She didn't debate! She came with a well-rehearsed, memorized speech that she was determined to get through somehow. She responded to every question with another one of her canned prepared responses. At least she was honest enough to more or less announce that is what she was going to do. I felt like I was watching the vice-president of the elementary school PTA enjoying her 10 minutes of fame chairing the school carnival BUT I'm sorry...I expect more than that from someone who wants to be a breath away from the President of the greatest country in the world. She gave no specifics really and scares the living daylights out of me. She stands for losing nearly everything that my mother, grandmother and I have worked so hard for these generations to gain rights for women. Having been to Alaska where I encountered women who had struck out to create new opportunities on the frontier, it surprises me that she serves as governor. I thought Joe Biden did an incredible job of addressing specific issues and reining in himself in what must have been a challenge facing this woman.

And Hillary, where the hell are you? You are the one Democrat who could legitimately go after her woman to woman. I was willing to vote for you if you had been the nominee but now I am SO disappointed that you have put yourself off the radar. Obama can't do it...Biden can' least not in the way that you could. Come on, Hillary. You pledged to support the ticket.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Back to the Alaska adventure

Back to the cruise

The Princess Star at boarding in Seattle
Our flight to Seattle was uneventful but crowded. On arrival we nabbed a taxi (I hate the Seattle has to trek up and across with luggage to get any ground transportation) and headed for the best kept secret in Seattle...the Executive Hotel Pacific downtown. Old hotel but very nice rooms and very reasonable. Leaving our luggage until check-in time, we walked over to the Seattle Art Museum which had an amazing installation of white cars with beams of light hanging from the ceiling. After checking in, we went in search of food and found a rather trendy spot called Purple with a huge wine rack in the middle. We were pooped and the food was just fair. Off to bed.
The next morning we left our luggage in the hotel's care and went off to meet Tom, a blogging friend. We sat for hours talking in Starbuck's...very interesting guy with his fun Kindle...very enjoyable way to start a vacation. Then off to Pier 30 to board. Boarding went quickly and well organized and we were led to our cabin.
Talk about being pampered! We were upgraded to a Premier Suite which meant we had a double balcony, a living room and bedroom and a huge bathroom with a jacuzzi tub and walk-in shower, 2 TVs and a wet bar with fridge. OMG! Chris and Karen had arranged for flowers to greet us and after meeting our cute steward, we went off to tour the ship and find food and drink, of course. It's a cruise...isn't that part of it? Even after days on board we still got lost or turned around.
The entertainment the first night in the Princess theater was just fair in comparison to what was to come but it was fun and we learned to get there early if we wanted a seat. Casinos aren't our thing so we went for the entertainment and there was lots of it. Nice bars with small bands and singers. Not being much of a drinker I managed to nurse a drink all the way through one set.
Then we were on our way to Ketchikan with beautiful scenery on the way.