Monday, April 28, 2008

Lulls in the Conversation

This is the only time I'll write about this here, but I've been quieter than normal mainly because I haven't known quite what to say. Betsy, who I love as much as it's possible to love a friend (in other words fiercely and with total acceptance) has been diagnosed with lung cancer. For the last two weeks I feel as though I've been pushing my way through a fog; brief and bright openings at times only to have it close in abruptly and without warning at other points in the day. Sleep was elusive for that first week. All I could think about was Betsy. They'd moved in February, far away from their Monte Nido home and many friends, pursuing adventures and lifestyle changes further north. And then. This. So while it's been tough for me and all who love Betsy (and there are many of us) I know from personal experience how other-worldly and difficult this has been for her.

But in the last few days, I have had this injection of confidence about Betsy's future. It's not just a positive feeling, it is something deep in my soul. I know she will be going through some very rough days, but I also have a very strong feeling that Betsy will be fine. It will not be easy, but she is going to be fine. Don't ask me how I know this, but I just do.

We're going up to see them in a couple of weeks and I can't wait.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Women in Art

Try and watch this Women in Art short video sent to me by my friend, Pat. It is exquisite and with Yo Yo Ma celloing in the background, a beautiful treat.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Les oiseaux en ma gorge

Um, did I tell you I was taking a weekly French class, a language in which I used to be fairly comfortable but in which I now sound like a Parisian toddler...sheesh, rereading that sentence should alert everyone to the fact that I also seem to have some trouble with English. are some birds that were in my garden yesterday.

A Hooded Oriole on my Blooming Aloe.

And the Great Horned Owl that has taken up residence in my yard.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Springtime in the Canyon

The sage greens and greys and colors of the earth and stone are suspended in the spring when the winter rains have done their job. These Santa Monica Mountains are particularly beautiful when that happens.

Wild Lupine and Grass growing on a hillside that in just a couple of short months
will be dry and dusty

Pride of Madeira and a Christmas light

Calabasas Farmer's Market
Rununculus at the Farmer's Market

Farmer's Market Beets

Orange on Little of the few not pecked to rot by the birds. A neighbor has an orange tree that he doesn't irrigate or fuss over that produces oranges by the hundreds and interests the birds not at all. We do everything the book tells us to do and the birds seem appreciative.

We are getting more orange blossomsthan last year and the air is thick and sweet.

Western Tiger Swallowtail

The Madagascar Jasmine giant pods burst

Aloe in full flower

And finally...what gets us all excited around here.
It's Coming our Way!

October, 2004

I thought I knew enough frustration and anger and disappointment and shame that surely, surely I was not alone. Roger and I talked about what we could do, how we could most help, where we could go and we decided we'd head back to Milwaukee, the city we'd moved from two years prior. That way we could see old friends by night and do what the young campaign staffers in Wisconsin told us to do by day. Democrats and Republicans campaign hard in Wisconsin and it's difficult to know which way elections will go, so according to all the pundits this state was up for grabs. And the final tally proved that to be true.

We were going to work on the Kerry/Edwards bring out the vote efforts for that week before the November election. I had voted for Edwards in the California primary, given small sums of money to his campaign and fervently believed in his message. His wife, Elizabeth, was also a powerful intellect and I knew she'd bring much to the office. I wanted him to be my president and enough of the rest of America felt the same that Kerry chose him to be his running mate. While he was one of the reasons I decided to get active in the election, the primary reason was my fervent opposition to the Bush/Cheney ticket.

I can't remember what the weather was like when we left Los Angeles in late October, but I'm assuming it was dry and hot and that we were desperate for summer to end. It ended abruptly four hours later when we arrived at General Billy Mitchell Field (or Mitchell Airport as it is now called). I remember beautiful autumnal colors, rain, dampness and sleet; in other words, typical late October/early November days along Lake Michigan. And I remember our optimism, not only for the Wisconsin elections, but for the country. We were going to get this one trick pony out of office and it was going to happen soon. (Here's where I shake my head in disbelief and say fuckfuckfuckfuck over and over again, still horrified that we've had to endure another four years of the dangerous ineptitude of the current administration.)

And so when I read about the excitement generated by Obama or Clinton, I feel a tickle of a sneer cross my face. Yeah, it's great that we Americans are excited about this election but why the hell weren't we jacked up enough about the election in 2004? Indifference by too many in the last election allowed another four years of the current administration to inflict their misery on too many. And now I read about the surge in popularity of McCain. All I can say is too many Americans seem to suffer from short term memory loss. Don't think, fellow Democrats, that we've got this election in the bag.