Tag Archives: fun

CoCo Chanel, Pocahontas, and me


Ms. Chanel


Me? I’m around somewhere. Mostly behind my camera, or driving, or reading, or knitting….

and paying attention.

One of my favorite teachers in high school described me as “Eagle eyes” because I was always watching, observing, but not necessarily saying much. But whenever he needed to know something about someone in class, he knew who to ask.

I guess I’m that same girl, usually quiet, non-obtrusive, but watching and listening.

Alecto and CG are so very different, and at the same time, so very similar. They are both articulate, opinionated, well-traveled, self-sufficient, self-confident, and down right crazy at times. Riotous fun.

Who else but Alecto would bring the wrong chicken, so that we’d have to make a chicken feed run? She went into that feed store wearing someone’s mamaw’s dress, purple socks and orange tennis shoes, and we had to stop her from tasting the salt blocks. She offered to bail me out of jail if I got into trouble on a run into a college town on Saturday night for supplies. She let  CG and I both indulge in her secret stash of Chanel face cream and lipstick. Decadent.

And CG? CG cooked. I’d forgotten how much I love the sound of a pressure cooker. I was twelve years old again, in my gramma’s kitchen, hearing the sounds and smelling the fragrances of country cooking at its finest. Country ham and gravy, beans and cornbread (with onions and chow-chow), fried apple pies, BACON!

We practiced yoga on the back porch. We relaxed in the hot tub. We went to the local tourist trap and braved the crooked house and dressed up in costumes and had our picture taken.

We were, in a word, girls.

I was never very good with girls. It wasn’t that I “did not play well with others”, it was that I never stayed around long enough to make lasting relationships with other girls. These adventures are new territory for me. As CG says, it’s never too late to have a happy childhood.

So, here’s to you, Alecto and CG: thanks for letting me be one of the girls.

Petticoat Junction

Front porch swing


tale of the pink hippopotamus

Long ago (last weekend) in a strange and foreign land (the mall) there lived a pink hippopotamus. Actually ‘lived’ isn’t quite right….

Long ago in a strange and foreign land, a pink hippopotamus was being held hostage in a glass prison by an evil claw. Many brave villagers attempted to free the poor hippo from the prison where the evil claw held her captive along with many other exotic animals. Alas, none was able to vanquish the evil claw in battle, and the pink hippo sufferred in silence until, one magical day (last Saturday) a brave warrior and his family came to the strange land in search of sturdy footwear (running shoes) for the brave warrior.

The search was long and fruitless, so the entire family stopped at the local tavern (the food court) in search of food, drink and a respite from the throngs of other villagers also searching for trinkets and tasty bits. Upon aquiring grog and meat pies (Sonic and some Japanese stuff) the weary troupe settled down for a brief repast. As they enjoyed their meal (yeah, right….mall food) and observed the antics of some of the younger villagers, the matriarch of the family (that would be, um, me) was taken aback at the sight of the imprisoned pink hippopotamus.

It should be noted here that the family matriarch holds a special affinity in her heart for the noble hippopotamus, having been summarily equated to the beast many years ago by her young suitor, now her soulmate and patriarch of the family. It should also be noted that the comparison between beast and maiden was made in jest and endearment, whereas now the similarities are a bit more, um, veritable.

In a brave attempt to free the pink hippo from its glass prison, the brave warrior offerred to challenge the evil claw to a duel. (Actually, I dared the Wubby to try and get the hippo from the claw game and gave him 4 quarters.) The battle ensued. Both sides fought heartily, and although the young warrior was indeed brave in his quest against the evil claw, he was defeated. He returned to the family to regain his strength (finish eating the Japanese stuff) and possibly prepare for one final bout with the enemy (if anyone had any more quarters.)

After fashioning one more weapon to use against the evil claw (yep, I had 2 more quarters mixed in with the Dominican pesos in my wallet) the young warrior went back into battle, his sister the princess attending to him as he fought. The elders could not bear to face the carnage, so they looked away and prayed for the safety of the warrior, princess and humble hippo.

Moments passed. Tension mounted. Would the warrior vanquish the claw and free the hippo? Or would the evil claw again best the warrior and take his weapons?? (Would we ever get out of the mall????)

An eerie silence settled over the tavern, until, suddenly a cry of victory arose from the warrior as he snatched the hippo from the jaws of death and delivered it to his matriarch.

(Actually, after grabbing the hippo with the claw, dropping it into the drawer-thingy and pulling it out of the whatever-you-call-it, he tossed it across the food court to me and, as I reached out to catch it, I managed to hit hubby in the head with it.)

Having rescued the pink hippo, the family continued the quest for appropriate footwear and also aquired some recent broadsheets for perusal at a later date. As matriarch and princess wandered from one merchant stall to another, villagers looked on in amazement at the happy hippo. The princess, though, was somewhat subdued by the presence of the hippo among the clan. (You know it’s embarrassing for a 14-year-old girl to be seen walking in the mall, with her mom who is carrying a stuffed animal.)

Gathering their parcels, everyone left for home, where the pink hippopotamus now lives in freedom from the claw and has been befriended by the large family feline who, upon seeing the lovely fluffiness of the hippo’s pink coat, became immediately enchanted by it and now likes to cuddle up with it as he settles in for a long after-dinner nap.

And so, patriarch, matriarch, warrior, princess, feline and hippo now live in harmony in the ancestral cottage.

Until sometime soon, when we pack up all our stuff and move down the road.

Poor hippopotamus might wish she was back in the mall before it’s all over.

sunburn on my shoulders (and other things that hurt)

So, we just got home from a day at the regional amusement park with five, count them, FIVE teenagers. Son, son’s girlfriend, daughter and her two best friends, both of whom might as well live here. One of them practically does live here. As the basketcase in The Breakfast Club (Ally Sheedy) said, her homelife is “unsatisfying.” The other friend met our little girl when they both entered third grade at a new charter school. She lives on a horse farm, so it was preordained for the two of them to become fast friends. But, since she lives in town and we don’t—yes, the horse farm is in the city—they don’t get to see each other as often.

What happens when you spend the day at an amusement park, walking a little and spending the rest of the time next to the wave pool, under an umbrella, without SPF 50 sunscreen? I wouldn’t want to find out, because I had the SPF 50 and I still have sunburned shoulders, and a sunburned face. Yes, I look as old as my old friends this evening. And my feet hurt…..I wore Merrel sandals all day, and my feet hurt. This is not supposed to happen, it says so right on the Merrel box. Ouch.

My son splurged and purchased an iPod for me. A used iPod, which is fine except for the lack of information on how to work the darned thing. What did we do before the internet???? I ask myself this question a hundred times a day. Some niggling thing starts rummaging around in my brain, like when I see a rerun of Star Trek:TNG and recognize a quest star as someone from a movie I’ve seen recently, only I can’t remember which move it was. What to do, kiddies? My brain will not let me rest until I remember what movie, so I hit imdb.com, find the episode of ST:TNG I’m watching, figure out the actress’ name, then search on her movies and ta-da! Instant answer. (Her name is Fionnula Flanagan, she was in the movie The Others with Nicole Kidman, she played a ghost, and she also played Lt. Cmdr. Data’s “mother”, an android.)

Where was I? Oh, internet, iPod, and things that hurt. The iPod decided to put itself in disk mode. I had absolutely nothing to do with it, like randomly pushing buttons trying to get the thing to turn on or off since I didn’t know what I was doing and didn’t have documentation because if I had I would have known not to randomly push bottons to turn it on and there’s really no such thing as turning it off. So, I had to reset and reload. Ouch.

It’s time to start considering what to pack for Arizona. I like going on trips; I hate to pack. Ouch.

Little girl and I are going on a trail ride while we’re out west. I had not been on a horse since before my knee surgery last October, so I decided I’d better give it a try before we leave. Tuesday evening we went to the barn, chased down a green quarter horse named Henri who reminds me of my quarter horse we sold last year, saddled him up and I rode. Henri hates being made to stay on the rail, like my horse did. We argued a bit about where he was supposed to be until he finally gave in and stayed on the rail. He did try once to push me into the rail. He did not succeed. But, having not ridden in seven months, I awoke yesterday morning sore all over, and remembered reading that horseback riding is second only to swimming as the best overall body exercise. Ouch.

Things that make me say “Hmmmmmmmmmmmm…”:

My list of activities that have caused ouchies this week are things that are fun. Well, maybe not the reset and reload. But, playing with kids, or just spending time with hubby in the shade under the umbrella next to the wave pool at the amusement park, riding a horse, taking the trip after the painful packing is done. There’s something profound in there somewhere, I know it. Sort of ‘no pain, no gain’, only I can’t find words for ‘fun’ and ‘ouch’ that rhyme, because I just scratched my head.

I think my scalp is sunburned.