Saturday, December 28, 2013

The Trunk Series ~ Feb 08, 1964

In the Fall of 1963 I left bucolic Mill Valley to attend UC Santa Barbara. I was 18 and it was time to go away to school. I had no game plan but I was off on a new adventure and that's what counted.

At the time UCSB was the new kid on the block of the UC system. The student population was maybe 3,500 students, mostly living on campus or a short walk away in Isla Vista. The weather was great, the beach was always calling, you didn't need a car, and dogs were allowed in class. Somewhat insulated from the real world it had a well earned reputation as a party school in those days.

Freshman and sophomore year students lived in dorms. The original ones on campus were refurbished military barracks. The four of us met our freshman year while living in Pine Hall. Sophomore year we were moved uptown into Santa Rosa Hall one of the new dorms. The ultimate goal was to move to Isla Vista, but that would have to wait for junior year.

Pam, Maggie, Me and Priscilla
Pine Hall 1963
We decided on some peace keeping measures early on and wrote up this agreement regarding the borrowing of each other's clothes. The signatories: Margaret R. White, Priscilla H. Mullen, Shelley K. Macdonald, and Pamela B. Detloff

Maggie and I have remained close friends over the years, but we've lost touch with Priscilla and Pam. I've started doing some research on line to see if I can find the two of them. It would be a hoot if we could reconnect. There are stories to tell from those years ~ if we can still remember them.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Eve ~ Dec 24, 2013

For a majority of the 32 years Rod and I have been together we've spent Christmas on the road: visiting my parents in Arizona or his family in the Willamette Valley of Oregon. We are orphans now, having lost the last of our parents when Rod's sweet pop passed away earlier this year.

We decided to stay home this year and all it did was get us in trouble.  Well, not really trouble, let's say we have a new understanding of an alternate description of adventure.

  • Dec 9 ~ through Dec 21 the bathroom remodel runs amok.
  • Dec 21 ~ remodel is completed on our wedding anniversary: oh boy we can shower and flush, the best gift ever before we head out for a great dinner at Underwood Bistro in Graton.
  • Dec 22 ~ the new plumbing backs up.
  • Dec 23 ~ septic tank pumped in case that was the problem (should do it every 5 years and it had been 7) ~ not the problem
  • Dec 23 ~ Rod on his belly in the ice plant with a hose and plumber's snake trying to shake loose whatever is keeping the main line to the septic tank from draining.
  • Dec 23 ~ an hour later success ~ splat something unmentionable drops into the empty tank ~ Houston we've fixed the problem, all systems go.
  • Dec 23 ~ well as long as we're in here we might as well dump the black water tank on our Outhouse on Wheels. This puppy saved us during this little adventure in plumbing.

  • Dec 23 ~ get the hall and living room carpets, couch and easy chairs cleaned by Coit due to dust bomb grit aftermath of removing a portion of two of the interior bathroom walls which turn out to be inch thick exterior stucco.

  • Dec 23 ~ go to movies to escape the chaos on the kitchen counter and having most of the furniture parked in the kitchen or out on porch while the carpets dry.
  • Dec 23 ~ get home from the movies in time to see the last heart pounding 5 minutes of the Forty-Niner game. A fitting end to the season and Candlestick Park.
  • Dec 24 ~ I started deep cleaning of one of the bedrooms: as in everything from baseboards to ceiling. Why you ask? Three days ago the afternoon sun was shining in Rod's window when he took a shirt out of his closet and shook it. A cloud of dust rose up and danced about him like campfire smoke. Yikes, cosmic hint, Thor's hammer, Gibb's slap to the back of the head ~ got it.
  • Dec 24 ~ Rod finishes installing wainscoting and trim.
After 8 hours of hard labor we took a break at 2:30 and headed out for a walk around the vineyard next door. Sunny and 66 degrees, hard to believe it's winter. Tomorrow we'll tackle Rod's bedroom, the kitchen floor and do windows before heading next door for dinner.  Pizza sounds good tonight!

Hope you're enjoying the holidays with friends and family. The kindness, humor, love and generosity of our neighbors got us through this little adventure, and I use the term adventure loosely.

Think we'll hit the road next Christmas ~ The cosmos and, by then, my new liver willing!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Omni Trium Perfectum Part VI December 20, 2013

Yes, once again it's time to play What's my Triumvirate? They seem to get a little stranger each time, but the irony and humor are always worth the excursion. 

Bathroom remodel ~ turns into the Remodel from Hell: a four day project turns into a twelve day "medusa of plumbing" marathon. It's worthy of it's own post, complete with pictures, so more on that later.

Credit card fraud - I get a call from the fraud division of my bank saying my debit card had been counterfeited. They were alerted when someone tried to purchase $300 worth of goods at a Target in New York City. The charge was denied because it was outside my area. Thank you Exchange Bank.

The Press Democrat reports today that Target just suffered the 2nd largest credit card breach in US history with 40,000,000 accounts compromised. Customers who made purchases by swiping their cards at its U.S. stores between Nov 27 and Dec 15 may have had their accounts exposed. Guess who went to Target for the first time in a year on December 3rd?

Rogue Ransom Exclusive ORIGINAL Painting 24x30.
Rogue Ransom
Going Nowhere ~ So we're in Santa Rosa round dusk and the Honda won't come out of park. It starts and the wheel turns but we're going nowhere. We get out the "Guide Book" and find there is a work around that allows us to get it out of park and drive home. However that was only after we set off the car alarm three times. What's amusing is no one gave us a second look.

Acrylic on Canvas "Going Nowhere"
Going Nowhere
Rod took it into the dealership and discovered that the remote sensor, that was installed for braking when we towed the Honda (Omni Trium Perfectum IV), had shorted out. The car thought we had no brakes so we become momentary hostages. I guess that's a good thing, though frustrating in the moment. Fortunately it was an inexpensive fix.

If you want to check Omne Trium Perfectum posts I to VI just click on the phrase in the Labels, lower right of blog. Have a safe and happy holiday season.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Holy Cold Snap Batgirl ~ Dec 6, 2013

So much for the gentle waltz into winter with our warm sunny days and slightly chilly nights. The temperature has been 24 and 22 degrees the last two nights, the high may reach 50 today if we're lucky. The little red fox of my last post probably wishes he had socks like these.
Fox in Socks - 5" x 7" print
Fox in Socks
The ice on the windshields this morning is akin to what we see in Elko when we go to the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in early February. Expect it there, not here.

on a winter window 7 - 5x7 frost patterns winter frozen art ice natural macro fine art photo - sand and petals photography
Winter Window
The well has shut down two mornings in a row. Yesterday it was one slightly exposed elbow, now "well" insulated (pun intended). This morning it's the pressure switch. Rod, out standing in his field with a cup of coffee and the little space heater aimed at the pressure switch, got us back on line. Ah the simple pleasures of flushing a toilet, doing dishes or a load of laundry. Le Petite Switch now has on a warm coat too.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

December on the Lane ~ Dec 1, 2013

December tiptoes in as softly as fox paws
On redwood duff beneath the trees
Each morning brings with it
Subtle changes to the universe

The rains of late November
Resurrect the seeds of summer
Pastures turn green on a moment's notice
Morning cold still gives way to warm 
A noble cat stretched out
Toasting in the afternoon sun
Content to watch his normal prey
Instead of giving chase
Robins making rainbows
On their way to winter homes
Bathing rituals
Emptying bowls twice daily
Birdsong in the tree tops
Squeeze the most from your every day
Savor the light, the texture and the sound
Embrace the kiss of late autumn
For once the sun sets
This day becomes a memory