Tuesday, August 29, 2006

We got a behind-the-scenes tour of Sheabel's, the vet. place that Allie works at. It was neat to see the surgery and grooming rooms, though the bad-news room wasn't much fun to look at. It had a squashy couch for people to spend the last minutes of their pet's life. We met a vet who does specialty work, but I couldn't help but wonder whether he'd have a job back in the days when pets were just animals. I love my cat and my dog, but I don't plan on spending big bucks to prolong their lives if they have terminal problems.
There were some weird looking dogs in the kennel; they looked like beagle heads stuck on badger bodies. We also got to meet a Hemingway cat--she had an extra claw/appendage on each paw. If you held her paw up, she looked like she was giving you a Vulcan greeting.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Dwain has a link to this on his website : the Encyclopedia of Arda I've had time to browse their Movie-goer's section, which is quite an extensive compilation of the various inconsistencies and differences between the movies and the books.

I will always have a special place in my heart for the movie The Fellowship of the Ring--indeed, I even associate my college years with it, but the latter movies weren't quite up to par. Poor Faramir! To see such a character sunk to such squirmy, insecure depths!

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

School starts tomorrow. Am I a dork because I'm looking forward to it; or am I looking forward to it because work is rather boring?

It's my birthday on Friday and I just realized it will be only FIVE more years until I'm 30. I used to tease my older friends with that--"You're a quarter of a century old!"--and now the joke is on me. That means my parents are more than half a century old, and both my Grandmas are approaching their centuries. Time is weird.

A fat brown spider with a body shaped like a rough thorn lives on (or, I should say, between) the garbage and recycling receptacles. Everyday, it spins a new web about the span of my arm, stretching from the handle of the blue recycling bin to the ivy on the ground. I lift the lid carefully, and the web stretches and flutters like a piece of thread crochet. It squats in the center, skinny legs tucked in, ready to spring at any hapless bug the web ensnares.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

While rummaging through my stuff stored in the Edwards' basement, I came across a bag of books--it must have been forgotten in the move to Stone Ave.--that contained the Anne of Green Gables series. The time seemed right to re-read them (you know how you can't read some books unless the moment is right--I couldn't read the Lord of the Rings at a certain point, only to pick it up again a year or so later and lose myself forever in Tolkien mythology), so I carted them all home and have been plowing through them. I'm almost finished with the third book already.
Anne is turning out to be one of my favorite literary characters. She is described at one point as being "surrounded by possibility", which makes me think of my cousin Rosie. When Rosie walks into the room, things seem to pick up. She has that rare talent of being the center of attention without demanding it; people flock to her, not because they wish to get on her good side, but because she seems to bring out the best in those around her.
We got a food processor from Jon's parents as an anniversary present. We sacrificed a potato so we could see it in action. The spud was gone in 3 seconds, reduced to white specks plastering the sides of the bowl (I think we pulsed it too long, but it was fun nonetheless). Jon was giggling like a little boy.
I'm looking forward to making hummus and salsa!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Sue recommended Paradise Alley to me, so I've started working on it. The book is thick enough to serve as a handy doorstop, or to knock an unwary pedestrian severely unconscious. It's taking me a while to get into: all those descriptive passages for mere minutes of a character's time! It takes place in New York City against the backdrop of the Civil War, while the draft is being enacted and plenty of Irish-Americans are unhappy with it. I must be hundred or so pages in, and it's still morning of day one, in the dead silence that comes before a mob outbreak. Rather unnerving.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

On my way to the library, some guy stopped me on the street and told me I "look like that girl from Princess Diaries".

I'm reading a book titled GenerationMe, which is a study on how the generation after the Baby Boomers has high opinions of themselves and feels no need to cater to the needs of others. I'm only a couple chapters in, but it's rather interesting. The author has compared hundreds of thousands of personality tests of this generation to that of past generations, and has found some marked differences, such as a growing disregard for convention, the belief that we know everything and therefore don't need to listen to our teachers, etc.

Monday, August 14, 2006

There's a new animal on the farm at Maple Hill Manor. Tyler got a Tennessee Walker horse for his birthday, and she's a very friendly one at that. Any time we came to the fence to watch the alpacas and llamas (a decidedly more reserved set of animals), Penny would march up to the fence and push her face into our hands. She'd be looking for a treat, but would stick around for a scratch.
She seemed to tolerate the other animals well enough (even gracious enough to allow one little alpaca to treat her as mama and nose around her belly for a nipple to nurse from), but when she got annoyed, she'd stamp her hooves and nose them out of the way. One time, she elaborately walked up past a llama, paused with her rump against him, as if loudly stating "I'm ignoring you!", then raised a mighty-muscled back leg and kicked him!

Friday, August 11, 2006

We're getting ready to head to Maple Hill Manor for our anniversary weekend. I remember the first time we drove out there, cautiously optimistic about its potentiality as our wedding site. When we pulled up, I took one look at the house, the giant tree shading the lawn, the red barn, the alpacas grazing in the adjacent field, the dogs and cats trotting out to greet us, and looked at Jon. That look was full of meaning.
Every time we go back, our experiences have always been pleasant. The owners are gracious, the grounds a balm to the spirit (I can't avoid the cliche). This keeps pulling us back. The same goes for Shaker Hill in Enfield, NH and the Woodstock Inn in N. Woodstock, NH. Whenever we go back to the Whites, we make sure to stay at those 2 spots. We're in a rut!
This means I now understand why Dad and Mom revel in their preference for familiarity. They go to the same restaurant every Friday night. The people there know them by name, and will find a spot for them even if there's a long line of people ahead of them. They keep going back because the food is good, the service great, the familarity comfortable.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

I rented a version of the Mikado that was set in the flapper era, with curly bobs, drop-waist dresses, and curly moustaches. Eric Idle, from Monty Python, stars as the Lord Chief High Executioner. The scene in which we first meet him is priceless, the physical humor truly funny, not stupid-funny, like those Will Ferrell movies. Anyways, the chorus is singing "Behold the Lord Chief High Executioner, etc. etc.", and he comes skipping out in a pale yellow and white sweater/shorts tennis outfit complete with knee-high white socks, simpering at his observers under a ridiculously boy-ish center-part, ear-length haircut.
Reading this doesn't remotely convey the hilarity of that scene. :(

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

My apologies for a listless blog. Our computer likes to disconnect from the internet at random times without consulting us, which makes posting to this blog a haphazard affair.

Anyways, we got home safe and sound from a whirlwind weekend of family reunions, a wedding, and an 80th birthday gathering for the family matriarch. Dad said this just might be the last time we might see some family members, so that added a weird dimension to it all.

My cousin Julie is a hoot to watch, and fun to be around. During the wedding ceremony, right before the ring exchange, she paused to hike up her strapless gown. At another point, while stepping down from the candle-lighting, she swayed with her arms out wide for balance. She told me later at the reception she didn't care whether her dress got dirty. Not your typical bride!