For Christmas this year, my mom gave me the third book of shadows! The UD Hearts NYC pallette is a great one! I have to be honest, I was a little let down by the Alice in Wonderland pallette because the colors were not fresh, but mostly old colors that had been renamed for the pallette.
That being said, book of shadows 3 is much better! It includes seven new shades and seven old favorites as well as two Sephora exclusive colors! If you were holding out on purchasing Psychedelic Sister or Haight, they're both in this pallette! I am really liking the new shades. The two I am most excited about are Rockstar and Bordello. I love not-quite-neutral colors and bordello fits the bill! It looks dark, but applies dry as brownish-pink. Some of the old favorites I am excited to see are Smog, Maui Wowie, and Snatch. One color that this pallet is lacking? A non glittery highlight color. I have always used Sin as my go to UD highlight but nothing like it is in this pallet. The light colors, Uzi and Midnight Cowboy Rides Again, are just too glittery for a highlight.
As far as the formula of the shadows, they are all very good and smooth. I have had a few UD shadows that are grainy, such as Godess and Crash. Both very dark and rather glittery. I am not sure if it was the color or just a bad batch, but I do not see any of those issues with these colors.
This pallette also includes my number one, all time favorite product, a mini Primer Potion and two eye liners, Zero and Ransom. Zero is a great super pigmented black and Ransom is a pigmented, metallic purple. I was really excited to see a purple liner in this one. I am pretty much the spokeswoman for purple, and the biggest fan of MAC's Bordeauxline ever. So a new purple liner in my life? Yes please!
Overall this is a really solid pallette and restores my faith in UD's pallette combinations. If you were itching to get some new colors and old favorites, this is a good choice, especially if you were not willing to take the $17 plunge for one of the Sephora exclusive colors. The pallette retails for $54 which is kind of steep, but when you divide it out, it works out to be less than $3 a color, not including the liners and primer. With the price of single pans rising, its a worthy investment. My only complaint is that it is not the everything pallette it could be. Missing that highlight color is a big deal to me because when I am packing to go somewhere, I have to grab one more thing.
What are your thoughts? I am sorry I did not have time to swatch the colors before I shared this with you all!
Paramore's newest song... I miss the Farros.
Think Louis XIV damask meets London 60s mini-skirt. It rocks with soft cashmere sweater and above-the-knee boots.
Mrs. Prada found a centuries-old weaving family in Lyon France to take up the challenge to create this piece of cross-century art.
On the body, it snuggles the hips. To the fingertips, it's like soft as bunny fur.
All I want to do is kiss it before I die.
She doesn’t remember arriving, but now she stands before him, embarrassed. “You have come…” He says the only three words she understands, for each sound that comes from him thereafter is as if from a flute. Notes. One lovely note connected to the next.
I must stare at him, and not lose that dot. Then she is floating down a river on her back, the water is warm and she’s floating without a boat, a raft, anything to hold her. But she can’t move, she can’t be terrified. Her terror sits on the river’s bank, as if held in a glass box. She can’t touch it, but she sees it.
She floats on.
Fire burns inches below her feet. The fire sizzles when water from her dress drips onto its embers. She doesn’t see the fire, she feels its heat and the smell of burning wood.
“Please sit now and we will …” The swami is before her. She folds to the floor and a stiff cushion meets her before the hard rock of the tile floor.
“Sit, see the place beyond this room, let it come in and let it fill you. You are filled with this spot beyond space and time. Sit.” The swami never looked at her, and when she tried to look at him as he spoke the final words of the day, she could not find his shape. From the corner of her vision, he was there. But when she tried to see him, to see if he were real, she saw only a shimmer of saffron. And the glass box filled with her terror now sat shimmering in the reflection of the man’s robe.
She opened her mouth but nothing came out. She remembered seeing fish underwater, breathing their water-air.
After I dated three men with the same name- I let the name die for me. I ended up being left with a doubled park dumping and an almost broken nose (my doing from a drunken night of debauchery-aftermath due to the break up). I was left with a bad highlight job of blonde- I needed a change-and him showing up on my doorstep with a b-day present months after he dumped me. And me not wanting him upon my door. He left me with one final email. I never responded. Later I heard he had gone off the deep end. At least I wasn’t left with that.
Another. He left me with one less book on my shelf- my favorite book Unbearable Lightness of Being and wondering what would have ever happened if he had really took a chance. He later found me. And came to give it round. Kissing me upon my doorstep. Anticipation of years made me feel faint. For the first time. But he ran away again. Left me wondering.
For years, I wondered. Until he almost died. And I had to tell him. And wonder until. I couldn’t anymore. We said goodbye in a hospital room. He might be healthy now. His body. But a fatal flaw of a man who would rather be full of potential than fail is not a tragic hero but a sad estate of affairs. If death doesn’t breath life into your bones into your body nothing will. Needless to say. He let me pass through his life again.
What ifs. Were better for him. He stopped being a what if. After one last summer of living out our past college days of infatuation. I walked down that hall of the cold clinical hallway and pushed the button to the elevator. Wanting to run down the hall and say goodbye. Or just say no. Don’t die. Not now. Because as I walked slowly and purposefully. I never wanted this what if to die. I wanted it to grow and flourish into something. But it had. As it lay lifeless inside of me. In that hospital. The elevators door open. Two faces appear before me. I hesitate. Not sure. If I can. Walk away. For good. I find my place in the elevator as the doors close in slow motion. Closing my view. Smaller each minute. Until it disappears. Dying. The death. Of me wanting it to work. He didn’t die. But we did.
“Will you look at that!” a man standing a few feet further down the platform said, “Must have been drunk on the holly berries.”
Sai turned to examine the faces in the windows with a smile on her face. Perhaps the bird was a sign that tonight her search would be rewarded.
Cyclist in the Dutch
Fog seem to
The tram tracks
She had seen others around the field simply vanish. Maybelle called them the unlucky ones, the tasty ones. She had instructed Margo not to graze on the fine corn meal they kept scattering around. Maybelle had long ago calculated that eating too much of what those, those, uh, humans – yeah, that’s what she called them - directly correlated to the increased number of missing animals a few weeks later. Maybelle had figured out how to beat the system, and Margo was the latest one Maybelle took under her udder.
“Just squeeze in there. I’ll come over in a second and pretend I found something to nibble on over there.” It was Margo’s last chance. The loud little one was gaining speed as she ran downhill. She was the cute one, but still Maybelle had her doubts about that human’s long-term integrity.
That’s how I felt on my 11th birthday when everyone forgot about me – because my sister was sick in the hospital. I felt as if I’d disappeared – I didn’t really exist. Yet I finally did get it.
On Saturday morning, after a night of dancing all night long to awesome live classic rock music with a bunch of my friends, I managed to pull myself out of bed and jetted over the hill to Santa Cruz to play my ukulele on the beach and sing with at least 60 or 70 other people. They show up at this one beach rain or shine, and they play and sing. I try not to miss being there with the group that calls themselves either “Sons of the Beach” or “Babes of the Beach,” because there’s nothing like playing ukulele and singing on the beach with dozens of people – there’s always someone with an upright bass or even a bass ukulele, conga drum players, guitar players join in, you name it. We bring music stands and the Santa Cruz ukulele songbooks if we have them – something you should not do without – one can play songs on guitar, ukulele, anything.
I got there right before 10 am and when I walked around the building next to the Crow’s Nest Restaurant to set up with the gang, I had to stop because what I saw took my breath away, literally. The fog had lifted and the sun shined on the ocean, bright blue sky, sail boats close up gliding by, the lighthouse on the rocks majestically presiding over the beach to the right, waves crashing against the store and the birds…people playing volleyball on the beach, and the group the wonderful group of people I’d found who welcomed me each week – from all walks of life and backgrounds – no one cares who you were or where you came from. We were all there to have fun and play music. I had brought the sign someone had given me the week before with a picture of a guitar on it that said, “If it’s too loud, you’re too old!” Everyone loved that sign and wanted me to bring it back. There were many older people in the group, mixed in with younger ones, even children – and as we formed our large circle, I couldn’t stop thinking of how this reminded me of growing up in San Francisco when we sang along with random people sitting on stoops or standing around playing guitar – how we all played and sang together and no one ever cared or worried about who you were or where you came from. A different life.
Knowing that it still exists gave me great comfort somehow.
I felt as if I belonged with these people, and had already gotten to know a few of them from camping with them at Burning Uke for four days down at Big Sur, an amazing experience, one of the most wonderful experiences of my life. Music has always been such a huge part of my life.
Okay, here we go – we’re going to start to play and sing now – we always open with an old song called “All of Me” and later close with “Please Don’t Talk About me When I’m gone,” both old standards from the 1920’s and then we play dozens of songs that someone gets tapped to pick each week – from old standards to a couple of awesome Hawaiian songs, to folksy music, even Beatles and Bob Dylan and a bit of rock n’ roll. We play and sing it all. It doesn’t matter. We even got to do City of New Orleans, a song that tells a story – I never get tired of playing and singing them.
It was so warm that I got my shoes and socks off between songs, and my jacket went and we played and sang with the ocean stretched before us.
I couldn’t leave right after the jam, no way. I had to hang out all day. As I sat on a stone bench putting away my music stand, an older woman sitting along waiting for someone began to talk to me. She told me her name was Jean, and that she loved playing uke and singing. She asked where I lived, and I told her Sunnyvale.
“Oh yes, I lived there for many years, until we finally got to move here, about 25 or maybe 30 years ago now…”
I nodded. “That’s a long time.”
“Yes, I’m 94 now!”
Wow. Ninety-four? I looked over at this lovely, beautiful woman – yes, older with wrinkles, but still so spry and alert, holding a ukulele in her hands – maybe the uke somehow was like a time machine…hahaha! Funny thought.
She went on to tell me all about her kids and grandkids, and asked me questions about my life. I told her about all of my kids, that I was going to be a grandma for the first time this year and I was excited, that ‘d found music with the ukulele groups and it made me happy. She agreed.
As we both sat there, I thought again – I could disappear and stay right here in this spot and never go back. Oh yes. I could.
The day Hawley escaped the small, bigoted California town where he grew up, a cool crisp April wind bent the reeds of the estuary and wet the people standing around the outside the appliance store down from the bus stop where Hawley stood with his duffle bag. Still without a uniform, Hawley looked enough like them to fit in. Checkered shirt, blue jeans, short hair—he looked like most boys working the fields. But he didn’t want to join the crowd looking so happy. They weren’t happy because of the cloudless, blue sky or the bright sun. The crowd didn’t look at none of that. They were staring through the big, streaked window of the appliance, eyes fixed on the flickering pictures of the television sitting on display. If he was standing closer, they’d be wanting at him to join in and grin about what they saw. It was no great feat. Not even a hundred yards, closer than Oswald’s shot on Kennedy. No need to adjust for wind. No long night sitting out the cold. The shooter had level a 30-06 from out a bathroom window and shoot across a street and a toilet nearby while he waited. Still the people in front of the appliance store window, the people from his town, smiled in admiration, as if it were some great feat.
He stood up holding his duffle with his back toward them as if he were trying shield himself from the wet breeze, but mostly not wanting to be part of it. When the bus rumbled down the street, brakes squealing, he stepped on as soon as the doors swung opened. He sat down on the hard bench, and studied his green duffle. As the bus rumbled down the highway, Hawley thought about the shot. With a telescopic sight he’d see the pores on King’s face. He’d see him breathing and he still didn’t, just like the people giggling at the images on the black and white t.v. like school children.
Where ever the army sent him, Hawley told himself, he wasn’t coming back.
Josh felt his head clearing. Maybe he was waking up. Or not. As his eyes adjusted to the dim light, he saw he was surrounded on all sides by dark stone walls. So was this still the dream? His hands were tied behind his back. His wrists burned. So did his shoulder. He struggled to sit up. He heard metallic sounds coming from above. He looked up and saw movement. Something was crawling out of the ceiling toward him. Its head slowly swiveled. Two bright blinking eyes looked down at him. He had seen that face. It was in that video he’d downloaded. Right before he’d fallen asleep.
She eventually set aside the fantasies and abandoned the box with all the props and memories at the back of the hall closet. The circus lived on, however, but at night and in dreams that insisted on repeated viewings and that weren’t much fun. The beginning was always exciting and irresistible. Alice was entering the circus grounds with a crush of people all on their way to the three-ring spectacle under a brightly striped big top. The way to the big tent was lined with the gaudy sideshows that came with the circus. Barkers screamed for attention. The snake charmer leered, freaks with absurd bodies posed and sickened, midgets strutted, fat ladies overflowed stools. There was much to see on the way to the big top. In each dream, however, Alice was prevented from going inside to see the show she so desperately wanted to see. Some nights when she reached the sign that said Entrance the opening had disappeared. Or the ticket she had so carefully placed in a coat pocket was gone when she reached for it, and, while Alice stood wretched and starting to cry, the rest of the mob pushed past her into the magic of the tent without a glance. Some dreams ended with the stairs, which was the worst. Alice was forced to climb a wide, steep, slippery blue stairway that reached almost out of sight. It never had a banister. Far above she could just make out an alabaster orb resting on a slender pedestal. She needed the orb to see the circus so she climbed. She climbed and climbed until only blue sky and thin air surrounded the stairs. She panted but there were only 4 stairs left and the orb would be hers. Suddenly a short clown in a white tuxedo with sequined lapels stepped forward and looked down at Alice with darkly decorated eyes. His initial amusement quickly turned into a horrid sneer and with a theatrical flourish he brought forth his right arm. Between the thumb and index finger he daintily held a large, exquisitely sharp silver pin. He looked from Alice to the orb, no not an orb Alice realized in that moment but a cheap white balloon. He looked at Alice one more time before he stabbed the balloon and Alice’s hopes of the circus into oblivion.
The door hadn’t closed. Relieved. Slowly, slowly, he opened it, so slowly he could almost not hear the metal door latch moving out of its socket.
Dr. Jackson’s howling was muffled by their hands. Ace walked the empty corridor in her direction, but had to stop. The sounds of her voice were bouncing making it difficult to identify her location. He went downstairs, drilling down into the building three, four, five floors. It was difficult to tell if some of the landings were actual floors.
They disappeared. He wasn’t where to exit. He peered through the glass window over a door handle. What he walked out to was a catwalk that cut across a vast open space. It was filled with stations of circular lab tables that were on different levels. Columns of these circular tables were connected by cables with bubbling liquid. The doctor was being carried away on a catwalk one level down. Ace got down on all fours to not be seen; the area was bright with glowing catacombs of extra large tubes that were filled with globular tissue.
On one circular table there were large glass tubes with embryo-looking forms. Oh my god, that couldn’t be human.
- today or tomorrow, the new Mac will be up and running.
- then I can work on photoshoots.
- and my Project Life stuff.
- and print receipts for taxes.
- maybe that will take my mind off the big investment in myself I made 2 days ago, I doubt it, but it might help. It's a huge step, outside my comfort zone. I'm not ready to share the details. I'm waiting for things to be finalized. Maybe then, my stomach won't clench up when I think about it.
- now you are wondering what I've done. It's not bad, really.
I missed the early crew, somewhat regretfully, with my solo crusade up the mountain beginning at about 7am in optimal weather conditions (ie: beautiful and awesome!).
A sneakily sub-50min effort to Nebo (wet with sweat and a wee bit dizzy at the top), I ran into John P of Epic Cycles fame. As I am on prac at the moment, and I didn't get up early enough to get up to Glorious with the boys, I turned around with a few friendly Epic faces for a cruise down the hill. The 'cruisy' bit lasted about 5 minutes, as we turned up to tempo pace.
When some bloke in a lime green kit advertising an allergy drug came around our wee bunch, then sat up, slowed down and held us up, John and I turned up the pace and launched the rest of the descent in the dog, smashing it (and each other!) down the hill. It was a gleeful pain, and one you really have to want to inflict upon yourself, but awesome fun nonetheless.
Followed by a coffee, and a day of patient transfers and drunkenness on prac...at least the day started well! Nothing like a ride and beautiful weather to put a smile on your dial.
I really like the tape. It's sticky but not so sticky you can't reposition it carefully. It's easy to tear. It is slightly see thru, so it gives a light airy look to glass, and on patterned paper, you can see the pattern through the tape.
And with so many patterns, there's something for everyone's taste.
“Who’s there?” Lily asked. She jumped up and looked around but didn’t see anybody.
“Not much time to explain. So sorry but this is urgent. Lily, you will understand when you hold the stone you wear around your neck. You found that stone when you were with Josh the last day you were together, before he moved away.”
“Who is this?” Lily demanded, as she unconsciously reached for the little blue stone with her right hand. This couldn’t be Josh. He was a couple of thousand miles away. But he was the only one who knew where the stone had come from. He’d put it on the string for her—making the necklace she never took off.
The dog’s eyes were watering as he cocked his big head to the side. The stone in Lily’s hand began to feel warm. Feeling dizzy, she sat down. Then the memories flooded her head. It was like watching a movie. And she was in it. She then knew who the dog was. His name was Sam and he’d saved her life—many times. She’d traveled with this dog to a place where she could talk to monkeys with blue skin. She saw herself with Sophia, the Medicine Monkey—her friend. She also knew something was wrong, why Sam was so unhappy. Tears came to her eyes too. Her friends were in trouble.
And as I walked in between classes. I saw the belonging parties to the cars. Didn’t recognize either not our cop. And as I walk down our long corridor cold pavement blasts into my face so cold I have to wear my coat inside. I realize the two cops I am following have picked up their pace and make eyes together and readjust their radios. I’m following two cops on the way to do something. The pursuit in the middle of school. In the middle of this school. Then I turn and they continue on their way to the yard. Back I see them now running. Middle of school two cops running around the halls. Not fishy. At all. Students ask me what’s going on because how could you not see that. Miss that one. Normal maybe someone might believe in a public school but its not. And that’s that until.
Until I found out why. Why they were here. And what they were looking for. Because I know the realities of this school. I know that. I know that there has been mace fights (two) and sometimes the students when searched have box cutters. That was hard enough for me to stomach. I went out some sort of personal tirade on the in and outside. But the presence of a gun. A gun from someone who came here just to shot one of our students. The thought of it is more than I can take. On any day. Ever. So I do what I can to not think about it. Because if I do I will fall upon my knees in the fetal. And never get up. Being strong. Is part of this job. Denial might be too.
The details come in. Slowly sporadically and shockingly. Upon the radio of this telephone game of high school. And as I walk across the hall. Hall to the main office. I see the student. The student. The student who was the intended target. I see him as he sits upon the chair. Leaning down his legs open. Sitting quietly. Happiness I feel for him just sitting. There. And for once I don’t know what to say. Say. I look at him. So he knows I see him. Really sees him on that chair. That chair. Breathing in and out. And I look at him and with no words ask him if he is okay. He nods slowly. Cautiously. As if we can ever be okay.
We were back driving through the streets of Oakland for the first time in 4 years and heading to ore and salvage to find furniture and bits for the new apartment. In the last week, knowing we would be going to Ore and Salvage, I imagined that we would run into Mel. That is if he was still alive- and still living in the house on Solano Ave and still doing carpentry or construction and still being Mel. A dear sweet man, a Mr. Fix-it, fun to be with but largely alone, reading books and pursuing astronomy, ham radios and other hobbies that thrived when done alone. I had last seen him in the late 70’s, when I was still with Ann and Mel and I were remodeling her first house and bidding on small carpentry jobs. Like hanging the heaviest door made out of the hardest wood, which had sat for 3 years getting harder awaiting someone insane enough to hang it. We spent so many hours getting this door hung and finally succeeded but not without a lot of damage to this beautiful, solid core door. I am not making this up but the homeowner was largely vision impaired -legally blind – and we were relieved to know she never ever suffered knowing what a mess we made of the door. About 2 years after we hung it, I ran into her at a party and she said she was surprised we had ever agreed to hang it—no one else would because it was so heavy.
The damn washing machine
is sucking and spinning
outside my door
and it makes for crap silence.
- of which there is none -
This is probably
punishment for allowing
stories to atrophy -
for revoking wonder
and a sense of dreams.
For defending against music
because it opens what is closed.
Tricksy seductress silence –
in the crevice between doing and hearing.
“What I’m saying is…No. What I’m doing is giving you feedback on your approach in class yesterday. That’s all.”
“But wait. Maggie, you’ve never done that. And you know my methods aren’t conventional. Controversy, even, has been part of it all along.”
“I know. And you produce results that no one else does in the whole field of pain management and rehabilitation. That’s why I’ve stuck out my neck for you, literally, and why I let you teach on your own. We could both be fired if someone thought that you’re doing deep psychological work in your rehab program without proper certification yet”
Ace interrupted: “what’s this really about?” They were having their first argument. Maggie had heard from Jake’s orthopedic surgeon that he was turned off by Ace’s class yesterday, which he was checking out surreptitiously. Too weird, kinda freakish talk about shape-shifting, was the complaint. “That was at the tail end of three hours. I was doing the wrap-up and giving the homework.”
“Your methods are sound. The best. That’s why your classes have been oversubscribed. The waiting list is long. It’s why we want to expand big.” He interrupted: “the kid was sneaking around”
“Jake. His name is Jake.”
“Jake was sneaking around to scoop me out. I didn’t even know he was there.”
“You’re being observed closely.”
“Yes, and” she hesitated, “and,” Maggie looked around away from Ace.
“Maggie, this is bizarre. Why are you making such a fuss about what this kid thinks of the program. And me?”
“Jake, his name is Jake. He’s Frank Sylvester’s son.”
Frank Sylvester was the Physician-in-Chief of the national hospital network they were part of. He was on the board of one of the biotech giants in the area and his family the biggest shareholder. Maggie and Ace needed support to take their programs to the next level. They were currently stifled by management and only dealing with severe budget constraints.
Their driver had the car running and ready when the three of them emerged from the house. How many days were they actually together as a family anymore. How many days did they spend with other families. Sasha had made them a picnic lunch, everyone would be competing for honors about whose contributions were more English. An English picnic.
Margaret shut her eyes to the sights as they passed out of the city. Today she would do what her husband must do every morning. She would not see the children with deformed feet and lips. She would not see the men begging. She would not see the girls with babies filling their tiny bellies. No, she would stare at Charlotte’s almost gold hair.
“Mommy, mommy. Look at the kites.” Charlotte saw them before Margaret or Ash, they were lost in adult thoughts, but not their little girl. “Look, can we get a kite too?”
The driver pulled up in to a spot between two other cars she recognized. The Watsons and Andrews were already setting up under a lovely tree. “Mommy, let’s go.” And with that Charlotte pushed open the car door.
“Charlotte, wait. Wait for us. We’ll get a kite. Just wait.” Ash came alive and was with them. Let the burden of their strange daughter fall in him, just for a moment, or an hour, thought Margaret. “We must say hello to everyone, then we’ll get a kite.”
Margaret saw that the kite flyers were the children of her friends. For a lovely moment, she felt comfortable. At the park on a lovely day with friends, or with people that she could at least pretend were her friends. Charlotte charged ahead, ignoring her father’s words.
“Ash, why don’t you go ahead with Charlotte, I’ll get us settled with the others.” Ash smiled and went after Charlotte. Go dear, you go see what your daughter sees.
“Margaret! Come, come see what our cook has made for the picnic.” Margaret turned to her friends, surprised she was excited to see what Annabelle had brought. She had not care if her basket was filled with the best chicken or tarts or who knows what Sasha had made. Margaret was simply happy to be here, out of the house, out of the nightmare of her mind, that of a stranger in a strange place. Margaret made the rounds of the other women, taking time to bask in the comfort of their soft cotton dresses and weak-scented perfumes.
I’d seen Dr. Wark before and he’d been to our flat in San Francisco even – he came into our bright lime green bedroom in the middle of the night once when I had a bad case of red measles – everything was blurry because my eyes were all messed up and I only could see out of one eye anyway. I never forgot how I had to sit in a dark bedroom and not do anything that involved using my eyes, no reading, no watching TV. Dr. Wark was our family doctor and he remained my Dad’s doctor until he retired.
It was a foggy, cool summer afternoon when I saw him pull up in his fancy, shiny car – one you’d never normally see in the neighborhood I lived in. I was careening down the hill of Second Avenue on my skateboard, feeling the cool salty air rush against my face – and trying not to think about whether Dr. Wark would tell my mom who hated it when I rode the skateboard down the hill like that.
I remember how he looked, tall and skinny with gray hair and round wire-framed glasses. He looked just like the doctors I’d see on TV on those shows such as Dennis the Menace or Leave It to Beaver.
He walked briskly as if he was on a mission, looking a little mysterious in the fog as I expertly swerved around him and jumped off the skateboard just barely missing him as he headed up the wide porch of our flat on Second Avenue.
“Woooo, look out! You know, I just treated a young girl with a broken arm – she was riding one of those skateboards!”
“Ohhh, I won’t get hurt!” I laughed. “I know what I’m doing.”
Dr. Wark nodded, smiled and waved and continued up the stairs. I’d seen him before a few times, but then I wondered – what was he doing here today? Something was weird.
I sat outside on the stoop holding on to my skateboard, not wanting to go in and hear my mom yell at me about riding my brother’s skateboard that I’d taken over after he got it for Christmas. She was afraid to buy me a skateboard or a bike or anything because I was blind in one eye, but my 11th birthday was coming up in a couple of days, maybe, just maybe I’d finally get a bike!
I should go inside and see why the doctor’s in there, I thought. Oh yeah, my little sister Jennifer was sick – Mom was worried, had said something about a high temperature. Jenny was fragile and small and got sick a lot. In fact, she was the reason my Dad transferred to San Francisco from Chicago – she was sick all the time and the doctors said she was better off in milder climates. But here I was sitting in the fog in the middle of summer. It seemed perfectly normal to me.
I’ll go in there in a few moments to see what’s up, I thought. Meanwhile, I could take this hill one more time. I ran to the top of the hill with the skateboard and put it down on to the pavement, one foot and then the other, okay, here goes – as I whizzed down the hill, it felt wonderful exhilarating – but then I swerved to slow the skateboard down and expertly jump off.
My mouth dropped open as I watched Dr. Wark slowly walk down the steps of my flat holding on to – no way. That was my little sister totally wrapped in a blanket. He didn’t even look at me, but headed straight for the car with my sister. All I could see was a little bit of her dark hair sticking out of the end of the blanket as Dr. Wark opened the car door with one hand and ever so slowly and carefully placed Jennifer whom everyone in the neighborhood called Jenny Pooh, into his shiny silver car.
Suddenly my mother burst out of the flat as if out of nowhere and dashed down the steps. She looked up the street at me for only a moment.
“Mary, I have to go to the hospital now. Someone will be over to look after you in a little bit. I’ll be back.”
She got into Dr. Wark’s car and they drove off.
I stood there for a long time holding on to my skateboard.
One day he asked Wanda, Olivia’s nanny, if she could go with him to pick up supplies in Baraboo, the closest town to the compound. On the way they took a side trip to the International Crane Foundation. Wang Lung’s ancestral homeland lay along the shore of Poyang Lake, the largest body of freshwater in China. Poyang is the wintering grounds for millions of birds, including the Siberian Crane. Wang Lung’s family had treasured the Cranes the inhabited their farmland in the winter months.
As they drove through the gates of the Foundation sanctuary, Olivia heard the rattling k-a-r-o-o-o of Cranes for the first time. It was a sound both familiar and strange. It made the hairs on the back of her arms stand up in the humid summer air. As they walked through the pens and looked at the Cranes from around the world who were threatened and Olivia listened to Wang Lung talk about his family’s farm and how it had been taken from them during the time of the Red Guards she became very sad.
“Why is life so hard?” she asked him.
“Why do you think like should be happy?” he answered.
“Isn’t that the way it should be?”
“In China we have a saying, Chi Ku. Eating bitterness is the American way of saying it. Chi Ku means that we will only find true meaning in life through hard work and discipline.”
“And if you work hard will you be happy?”
“There is no heaven in China. There is only more hard work.”
Olivia looked up at Wang in that moment and her nine year old mind opened and saw a man who had lived such a hard life, losing his entire family, still working hard and he seemed happier than all the people she saw at the clubs and parties that her mother and father attended. She decided then and there that Chi Ku would be her path.
His wife favored a slightly more high-pitched run at life; nothing gaudy but quicker. She played the organ at the church where she pulled her mouth way to the side when it was time to make the sanctuary vibrate on the big hymns. Garnita also taught piano in the dining room of she and Slim’s house. Most of the students came once a week and patiently Garnita helped small fingers driven by little interest find the right keys to push. She was kind and honest with the kids, even ones that had no love of music didn’t mind coming to Miss Garnita’s for an hour.
Sometimes if it was too hot too work or the fields were too muddy Slim kept his wife company while she taught. He sat bent over a jigsaw puzzle spread out on the dining table while Garnita worked through that week’s piece with the student. He never said anything but ‘humm’ once in a while as he pondered the pieces. But when she was finished and if the kid was one he liked he’d say, “I believe I could use a little help with where this piece goes. Suppose you could help me?” The student would rush over to Slim and take the piece and concentrate with a frown while Garnita collected the music and put it back in the piano bench.
Garnita and Slim had a closet full of jigsaw puzzles they had worked, some, their favorites several times. That is how they spent their evenings, one on each side of the dining room table moving quietly over the hundreds of colored pieces of cardboard spread out before them. Slim and Garnita were never able to have children of their own.
Rich in love or rich in type of booty that women delight in or rich in family.
After a certain age, I'm not certain what I want to be rich in.
Maybe I've had the embarrassment of riches that goes along with a spouse that has loved his career and me, children who have loved me and left me,
a house that I’ve loved and now left, old suitors who are now more ancient that me, who still love me that I left fifty years ago. The richness is in
holding it all, having whatever memory suits me to enrich the moment and yes, there's still the tangible love of breathing in life here on the beach in Israel.
Even if I am alone.
On Friday, I made this super cute little baby album for a class. Contact me if you are interested. I don't have many available.
And we had our first Project Lifers' meeting. We did a lot of deciding what we were going to, a bit of snacking, some more deciding, and lots of talking. I'm very excited about this album, it's for me, not for a class. It's not very often that I do stuff for me anymore, well, unless you count my Road Trip album which has grown so much that I had to go out and get another album on the weekend. And I still don't have all my photos printed.
Which brings me to the computer. I shipped it back to Apple and the replacement should be here any day. I am so hoping we just had a Lemon and that our problems will cease when the new computer is up and running. I'm hoping it's not some kind of electric current I have that is frying hard-drives. I have been assured by numerous techs that killing 3 hard-drives is un-heard of, but so is killing 2 and I did that just fine. And if you want to get technical, the PC hard-drive went this year too, so that is 3 in one year. If my mom is reading this, she is now worrying about her Macbook that I am using right now.
And the biggest news of the weekend...
I ran out of space in the Picasa/Blogger photo album and had to purchase more today. I've been blogging for more than 3 yrs., I take a zillion photos and it was bound to happen.
Been looking so long for a big bold watch. And I got one now! found this at Urban Icon Store. :)
I’m doing lots of preparing recently, pretty stoked! School stuffs, new project, the band & Bloggers Yard Sale part 4! :) and I found this at Urban Icon, new lovely watch! I actually have been looking for one big bold watch and fell in love with this one :) Suits my casual looks, kinda boyish but feminine at once, and I could change the portable part which has svarowski in it, for parties. Purrfect! Now I won’t be late for meetings anymore, ayye :p
Die-hard fan. :)
First Up! Deborah Lippmann Waking Up In Vegas. I, like many out there, really love OPI's You Don't Know Jacques! However, sometimes it was too dark or too brown for my tastes. I first saw Waking Up In Vegas on the hands of Gaga and I won't lie, my love for her is what initially drew me in. My love for gray neutrals is what drew me in further. I really like this color. I would not say I love it but it is definitely now in my go to color line up. It is a true gray, not too brown, not too blue, just true. Major bonus: Two coats give you a solid finish! Available at Nordstrom.com.
Second: Seche Vite! I have read about this top coat numerous times. I have even been caught talking about OPI's RapiDry top coat. I went to Ulta on Friday and broke down and bought Seche Vite and Seche Rebuild base. I LOVE them both. I could go on for about an hour about how much better this top coat is for hours, but I will spare you. The high lights include: Super clear, super easy to distribute over the nail, long lasting, and the best part - SUPER fast drying. Most quick dry topcoats dry the top layer in a few seconds, the second layer in 5 minutes, and anything lower than that, two hours. My nails were dry and HARD withing moments. As someone who is notorious for painting her nails then falling asleep on the couch and destroying them, this is a life saver. I can say that with confidence because I fell asleep on the couch about 30 minutes after I used it and I still had pretty nails the next day! Also, I am not sure how long this sale will be lasting, but I found all of the Seche products on sale at my local Ulta! Most were $4.99 a bottle and up!
Moving On! This product is not so exciting. OPI's Bring on the Bling from the burlesque collection is a lovely glitter party. I received it in a set from a friend for Christmas. I really like the ridiculous amount of gold glitter and the hint of pink and green scattered through out in this polish. What I don't like is that every time I wear it, the majority of it has chipped off by lunch time. I have tried wearing it alone three times, each time using a base coat, three coats of the polish to make it an opaque glitter, and two top coats. I will admit, it is mighty thick, but anything less leaves either a slightly sheer finish or a lumpy texture. I want so badly to like this polish, to sing its praises, but its just too chippy for me to do so. I think a single layer over another color, this would be really great, but alone, not so much. I am hoping the upcoming release of the Katy Perry glitter polishes do not have the same fate because I am really interested in Teenage Dream!
Have you had the chance to try any of these products? Did you have the same feelings?