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Showing posts from June, 2009

Keep on Movin

Picture this:
The rain is falling madly, the air conditioning is too cold, and there are no visitors. You can guess where I was today. Although I've brought a book of short stories by Lauren Groff, Delicate Edible Birds, to read, the stories are so intense that reading them one right after another diminishes their potency...I need time to absorb them for a bit before moving on to the next. Because of the rain, I can't go out to take pictures, so I do something that has never occurred to me before: I begin dancing in the back gallery space to Soul II Soul's greatest hits, chiefly, Keep on Movin. I can't imagine what I would have done if someone arrived. It felt good to be moving I can say that much for sure.

That cd is an oldie but a goodie. If I remember correctly Matt used it as background music for the prom video he did all those years ago, make that 17, if you can imagine. He's turning 33 on Sunday....I can hardly believe I've been a Mom for so many years!

I&#…

Spend More Time Living

Thursday morning Baxter's barking woke me at 5AM which I took for a sign that I should go somewhere early. Packing my things quickly, I got on I-4 intending to head for New Smyrna Beach. I didn't make it that far. Not because of any problems, but while driving I had an idea about catching the sunrise under the St. Johns River bridge near Sanford. I got impatient. I got back in the car and drove along Lake Monroe, pulling the Honda over to catch the sunrise between palm trees. Running across the road into the grassy area alongside the lake, I was swarmed by bugs. When I returned to the car this is what it looked like:

My body looked like the side of the car! For a nice change, at least they didn't bite.

So here's the sunrise in full glory:

Alert readers may notice I said above that I wanted to get the sunrise between palm trees; the one with the old dock posts turned out better. Maybe a little less cliche?

I walked around the marina, got gas and headed home. By now it was …

You've Got a Friend

While talking with Maureen yesterday afternoon she related a story about a friend of hers. During a trip to the beach with some other ladies, the said friend told the others, "excuse me for a few hours, I'm going to Africa." I'm sure you've guessed what she meant--you are much too clever to need an explanation.

That's what I've felt like while reading, The Devil in the White City by Erik Larson. My physical body was at Gem Mary Court, my mind was teeming with the images created with words on the page. I could almost envision the enchantment of the Exposition juxtaposed with the grimy reality that was Chicago in those days. I remembered that I'd tried to take photographs inside The Rookery building where the early planning of the fair took place on the top floors. Immediately upon completing the book I went to my folder of Chicago photographs.

Because I was only in Chicago for such a short time, and still very weak, my foot travels were somewhat limited,…

Blame it on the Heat

Since last we met, the date on the calendar shows that summer has arrived. In Florida what this really means is that we have moved from lesser summer (April, May, early June), to greater summer which can sometimes stretch into November. As I type this, it is 97 outside, a degree or two cooler than yesterday's temp at the market. Not only am I wilting, but my sales are too. Of course I'm sure "this too shall pass."

You were probably thinking that I haven't written because I've been too busy, not really. With sales down, the behind the scenes activity has slowed to a crawl; I've been filling my days with reading and swimming, and of course taking photos when the opportunity presents itself.

Last Wednesday the phone woke me up at 6--groggily I picked up hearing my dear husband's cheerful voice,

Bruce:"it's your wake up call honey." (He'd been up since 4:30 working on email!)

Gail: "why did I want to get up?"

Bruce: "I've…

Beauty Amongst Thorns

By now you know that our neighbor Regina is a wonderful neighbor, very hip at age 73, and always ready for an adventure. Sunday's market was hot--enough said. Pretty much once you are home you don't want to do a thing, but a phone call from Regina changed my mind. "Would you like to join me in seeing some amazing night blooming cacti--I'll pick you up around 11?" she asked. My first instinct was to say no thanks, not to mention that the Magic were playing and I was certain they were going to win, but instead I said, "sure." Not far from us on Orange Avenue, in front of an office building, there are these huge cacti covered with these beautiful blooms. Turns out it is the building Martini Graphics first moved to when they left their home office next door to us, the business our neighbors founded where both Jonathan and Bill worked for some time. Anyway, it was an amazing site to see such ugly plants producing the most gorgeous flowers which open at night…

Media Day

There's gonna be a whole lotta sharing going on today!

You know how I mentioned the wonderful wildflowers on one of my previous posts? Well the heat has, surprisingly, not killed them all off just yet. This morning I drove Bruce to The Villages for a brief meeting leaving me little time to explore.I wanted to spend time with him but he was mostly making business calls. When I dropped him off back at his office around lunchtime his boss came out and we went to Nordstrom for lunch--good stuff. Ok, back to the story-- as you know, there are thousands upon thousands of homes, along with two "town centres" (I'm using that on purpose), and 36 golf courses located there. Not much rural life left, but there is one road I like to travel when I'm there. I saw these on my drive:

Behind this fence are a group of about twelve Shetland Ponies and their babies. I've tried my best to find out what baby ponies are called, to no avail. I did however, find this out about the bree…

Nothing But Blue Skies

For two days now there has been no rain, it's as if we never had weeks of torrential downpours with high winds, thunder and lightening. After a big storm on Tuesday afternoon the skies cleared causing me to say it was a good omen for the Magic game. That sounds perfectly silly, but sports fans are a superstitious lot. It worked you know.

The pool cleaner, after initial hiccups, has done a remarkable job. Oh my, it is a sight to behold how lovely the pool looks. As you may have guessed the above photo is of the pool immediately after the filter came on. Remember how I mentioned that air in the line may have been causing our difficulties? Well, I'm sorting all that out. Not one to let any opportunity go to waste, I grabbed my camera and here we are--lovely bubbles captured. I spent a good part of the afternoon either in the pool, or in the shade reading Life of Pi. Matt gave the book to his dad in 2001 (as evidenced by the U2 concert ticket stub in the book) but I'd never rea…

It's What I Do

I take pictures.

I've only just realized that when something interests me I tend to get a bit compulsive. If I think back over my life there have been different phases of compulsiveness, beginning with sewing, which kept me occupied for many, many years. It is kinda fun looking back at old pictures seeing all the old clothes I made that everyone wore except for Bruce; he was exempt from homemade clothes. In fact, in our foyer there is a picture of me with my mom in a gown I made for her when I was around 17. She would have been 46 at the time. I remember it was for a big charity ball and I was put on serious restrictions because I didn't work hard enough on it, instead spent time with Bruce when he visited. And then there was cross stitch, quilting, cooking, of course reading goes without saying. You will notice an absence of anything physical.

So now I'm obsessed with photography. Today there will be pictures, and more pictures. I was absolutely delighted to see this on th…

Baxter Earns His Keep

Well, sort of.

Baxter had a traumatic week. First on Wednesday I took him for his annual check up which is never a lot of fun for either of us. I made a 10AM appointment which did me little good as I had to wait until 10:50 to be called back. Squirming all the while during the blood drawing, another tech had to hold him still to get his shots. Eventually the vet arrived giving him two vaccines. He pronounced him stubborn, nothing we didn't already know. One good thing, Mr. Baxter now weighs in at under 12 pounds and not because of exercise. I've tried my best to get him to like taking a walk but it is a no-go. Occasionally he'll do it but lots of the time he plants himself and only with strong tugging can you get him to get moving. The vet said just let him run around the yard. Good thing. You may recall that during his neutering things went terribly wrong and ever since visiting the vet is not among his favorite things to do.

Secondly he's getting weird about getting hi…

Calendar Girl

By now you know I'm obsessed with getting the cover photo of the calendar. As such I'll try most anything including throwing clothes on at 6:15AM, hoping to get something good. Unfortunately the sunrise was fairly weak and didn't do much for my photograph. Although I'm fairly confident everyone will be taking this shot, Bruce still suggests I add my version.

This one won't be it, but I'm posting it so you can see the dramatic results lighting makes. While thinking about the contest, I realized how challenging it will be because everyone will be shooting the same thing. The words of Professor Burt Stout came back to me--photography is mostly about "light management." Thus I'm trying it in all different lighting conditions, hoping I'll be able to use it to make the pictures more dynamic. Here's the one I took about 12 hours later:
As well you can see that I stepped over more tracks to give it more foreground which I'm hoping not so many pe…

Excitement in the Air

The Orlando Magic WON! I'm sure I'm not telling you anything you don't know by now, but it still feels good to type it! Yesterday the market was abuzz with people happily reliving Saturday night's game. Thankfully the Magic took an early lead, never letting it go, allowing the fans to watch a great game without having a heart attack. Dave sat court side for game 4, as I may have mentioned, he said it was pretty stressful! Although the Lakers are favored to win, I have a feeling the Magic may surprise some folks with their grit and determination. Let's hope so.

Speaking of favored to win, I only learned this morning that Susan Boyle came in second for Britain's Got Talent. Later on I read she entered a clinic for what may well be a nervous breakdown. What that woman has gone through in the last seven weeks, can you imagine? I'm sure her mother never imagined how this would all turn out. As they say, truth is always stranger than fiction, or the imagination fo…