Monday, January 31, 2005

Plumbing update...

Ok, this is not my traditional..snow is falling...prisms are glistening in he golden sunshine...although I am thinking about this great cache of icicles I came across on my walk tonight...


However, this is about plumbing... (if confused,see this week's Sunday Passage)...

So, I come home from my week out to frozen drain pipes in my downstairs bathroom. Well, it is cold in there, I mean, visitors dress quickly after their showers, but I have not had frozen drains yet..until arriving home..

Now, this is distressing, I do not want to pay for a plumber (I much rather buy quilts and tea pots and books) so with a little phone help from a friend (no names are necessary but he lives far away on an island)...he says put hot water in the bathtub. I proceed to do that..however, the toilet is also plugged. I decided that if a little hot water is good...lots of boiling hot water is better..so I kept the tea pot going while I poured the steaming, hot water down the drain. I also propped myself up on a wooden box in the cellar with a hair dryer on the pipes.

I am happy to say that I did, indeed, thaw the pipes, but melted the wax ring on the toilet in the meantime.

So, today the plumber (my cartoonist neighbor, Lee) came and fixed it for me.....

All I can say is that it makes a great story!

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Chatting in the late afternoon with lovers of books...

Every afternoon I check in with email and such at the school library...today not much got done..we spend all of our time chatting about authors and books and kitchen stores.

The topics ranged from the Orphan Train to cooking in Tuscany. Words just spilled out of our thoughts as we all tried to go about our work, but then knew it wasn't going to get done.

It is a nice feeling to know that wherever we go or travel, common denominators bring folks together for a moment or two..enough to say..it was a very good day.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

The Emerald City

This week finds me working daily in a school in West Lafayette, Indiana sitting among poppies..a yellow brick road..and the great Oz. Oh, well, take out the great Oz...he is in Florida for the winter...

Actually a parent committee decorated a lovely room for me to work in to teach children to love poetry and words. The room is full of winter murals, snowflakes, decorated pine trees, a wall of the Emerald City, yes, the yellow brick road and a field of poppies.

From early in the morning we write cinquins and haikus...talk about lovely words and write in journals. Tomorrow I will share some of their writings...they fill my mailbox with their words each moment of the day.


Tuesday, January 25, 2005

An Ode to the Bard...

Today is the anniversary birthday of Robert Burns, the Bard of Scotland. He was born in 1759 in the small village of Alloway.

Folks in Scotland will celebrate his life tonight with the cooking of haggis, the drinking of whiskey and a toast to the lassies. They will conclude with a recitation of his poetry, Oh My Luv is Like a Red, Red Rose; Comin Thro' the Rye, and Auld Lang Syne.

As for me, I am working out of town, will have an early dinner at Appleby's and read the night away. Ok, ok, I might hum a tune or two to the server!!


Monday, January 17, 2005

The same story...

I am trying to find something wonderful and creative to write about...but the truth is that deep winter is here in Northern Indiana. Streets are slick, neighbors are shut in, evening walking will be cold tonight with temps at 9 below. (I'll go line dancing instead!!)

My neighbor boy, Ed, just shoveled my walks (at least I think it was Ed, I couldn't tell with all those face masks and hats and such.)

I used to have boy friends shovel at my parents house...the my own children shoveled..now it's the neighbor boy. I hope he does it because he thinks I am fun and have lots of good stories and hot chocolate...I hope he doesn't shovel because I am "old lady Homan"...

I think I better go outside and have a talk with Ed. But then again...forty pounds of clothing, 9 below zero. shoveing for hours...it doesn't really matter what he thinks, does it?

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Saturday evening post..

I have moved my writing desk to face my window full of prisms...by day and sunlight I am surrounded by ribbons of rainbows dancing all over my house..and now by evening I sit and watch the pale sunlight go from day to dusk, and I can view my neighborhood.

Winter Saturday nights are quiet...the neighbors to my south (Larry and Sherry) always go out to dinner with their grown children on Saturday night. They leave the porch light on to light their pathway when they reurn. It is never late...9 or 10.

Across the street my neighbor, Lee, has his girls this week, and with all the blinds open I can see them cooking supper and laughing.

On the other side the Lutherans are out for dinner also. Amy (a part time Lutheran minister) once told me that they use "funeral" money for Saturday night dinners. Sorry I can't oblige, Amy!!

My neighbors to the west are in Sante Fee visiting their daughter.

The rest of the neighborhood is quiet..very few cars approach; although the snow has come and gone and come and gone..just a light dusting tonight.

My house is quiet too...I can actually hear the clock tick and the furnace hummm, so I think with a half moon beckoning me...I will don my purple hat, coat and mittens, and hiking boots and celebrate this raw, cold day in January.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Haiku for January...

heavy winter tracts
circle around my garden
frost bites my big toe

inky night of black
halogen snowflakes falling
crystal shooting stars

deep under woolens
canopied dreams of ice cream
maraschino nose

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Garrison Keillor, John McCutcheon, ee cummings

So, a long winter's night...snow abounds everywhere. A long first storm that was predicted for days brought inches of snow...then last night..an unpredicted surprise snow brought more inches. I was surprised to be awakened by the blinking, chugging lights of the plow in the night.

My neighborhood is quiet. No one walks or even drives much for that matter. I know folks are home because I see lights come on around 4 in the afternoon after dusk knocks on the door.

I am lonely, but I am content. I have decided to take up knitting again between painting and NRP radio. I have made my dining room my January headquarters...it is rather cozy with my big flowered chair...lap top and candles, and the radio, of course.

Here is a lovely piece from e.e.cummings for a cold winter's night:

i go to this window
just as day dissolves
when it is twilight(and
looking up in fear
i see the new moon
thinner than a hair)
making me feel
how myself as been coarse and dull
compared with you, silently who are
and cling
to my mind always

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

The Snow Plow and Other thoughts...

Dear Friends,
I often say, hey, are you listening? I am back after a short hiatus...

It is cold and dark in Northern Indiana...snow pelts on my window pane as I am snuggled inside with a pot of hot tea, leftover candy canes and my Christmas tree still blazing on this Twelfth Night.

News comes in packages...my Dad has been very sick in Houston, but has been moved to a regular hospital room, and I spent a half hour laughing with him on the phone tonight. My Dad is so full of story..he brings me so much joy. I send wishes to him across the winds of sleet.

Philip was here for two weeks, and just left yesterday morning. I miss him. We spent a quiet two weeks..decorating the tree, baking cookies....cooking, walking, talking..being together. I miss his presence, I miss him voice, I miss the touch of his hand.

On this Twelfth Night...I hid a charm in a piece of leftover coconut cake from our New Year's Eve party...I found the charm (well, I am the only one attending my party!!) so I got to make a wish....

So, here's to a belated New Year's...to Twelfth Night...to good health to my Dad...and to wishes on a winter's evening.