Monday, October 31, 2022

Greetings from Chestertown and Annapolis

Another quickie after even more lovely day with Paul and Cheryl in Chestertown and Annapolis -- the former for the Sultana Downrigging Festival with many tall ships plus Halloween decorations and charming small town walk, the latter for wandering by the waterfront, awesome vegan chorizo for dinner at the Rams Head Tavern, and Vienna Teng at the Rams Head Live (awesome concert, new songs, mention of the fact that she knows Tumblr speculates about her sexuality). More when awake, Happy Halloween! 


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Sunday, October 30, 2022

Greetings from Pennsylvania

Extreme quickie after a lovely day in the Brandywine Valley with Paul and Cheryl, first at the Delaware Art Museum, which has renovated Pre-Raphaelite galleries and was having a Dia de los Muertos festival with food and vendors, then at Longwood Gardens, which had a Bruce Munro light installation, harvest decorations, chrysanthemums, the holiday train display, and the last weekend of the fountain show (we saw two, kids' music in daylight and Madonna and Lady Gaga at the illuminated night show)! 

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Saturday, October 29, 2022

Poem for Saturday and Local Halloween

Ghost Music
By Robert Graves

Gloomy and bare the organ-loft,
Bent-backed and blind the organist.
From rafters looming shadowy,
From the pipes’ tuneful company,
Drifted together drowsily,
Innumerable, formless, dim,
The ghosts of long-dead melodies,
Of anthems, stately, thunderous,
Of Kyries shrill and tremulous:
In melancholy drowsy-sweet
They huddled there in harmony.
Like bats at noontide rafter-hung.


Friday was a beautiful, cool autumn day, bringing lots of birds and small animals and deer around the house and in the woods when we walked. It was otherwise not a very eventful day -- got some work and laundry done, had dinner with my parents. 

While still at my parents' house, we started watching the first game of the World Series, which did not begin well for Philly, but they're tied with Houston now. Here are some of the Halloween decorations we've seen around our neighborhood: 

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Friday, October 28, 2022

Poem for Friday and Middletown Scarecrows

The Scarecrow
By Walter de la Mare

All winter through I bow my head
beneath the driving rain;
the North Wind powders me with snow
and blows me black again;
at midnight 'neath a maze of stars
I flame with glittering rime,
and stand above the stubble, stiff
as mail at morning-prime.
But when that child called Spring, and all
his host of children come,
scattering their buds and dew upon
these acres of my home,
some rapture in my rags awakes;
I lift void eyes and scan
the sky for crows, those ravening foes,
of my strange master, Man.
I watch him striding lank behind
his clashing team, and know
soon will the wheat swish body high
where once lay a sterile snow;
soon I shall gaze across a sea
of sun-begotten grain,
which my unflinching watch hath sealed
for harvest once again.


Paul had to go to the office on Thursday early, so I had a quiet morning at home with the cats, then he came home for lunch and we had butternut squash soup and cheddar cheese. We had gorgeous not-too-warm weather and took a longer walk to see some Halloween decorations and trees a couple of blocks away. 

Nearly my whole Thursday night chat group was away this week, so I just talked to Cheryl briefly, and I also talked to my college roommate on the phone so that was lovely. Evening TV was the Baltimore-Tampa Bay game, and the Ravens beat the Bucs, so it was fun! Middletown has an annual Scarecrow Contest: 

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Thursday, October 27, 2022

Poem for Thursday and Gathland Sights

This Book
By George Alfred Townsend, a.k.a. Gath

This book I wrote at 28
and thought it only light and flip
And did not know, till now, too late,
our best is in apprenticeship
That while we learn, we so enjoy,
as, when we're learned, we never can:
The feats of Hercules, the boy,
he never matched when he was man.


I had a quiet Wednesday morning trying to get stuff done, then I talked to all three of my good high school friends at lunchtime, which is always my favorite lunch hour. By the time we were off Google Meet, the clouds had gone and we had a gorgeous sunny late afternoon, so we took a walk and had Indian food for dinner. 

I had to watch The Masked Singer again (YES I DID) because it was Muppet week, then we Skyped with the kids to try to figure out Thanksgiving schedules. Afterward, we watched this week's Andor, which has gotten better and better, and the Thor: Love and Thunder extras, which are very fun. Scenes from Gathland last weekend: 



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Wednesday, October 26, 2022

Poem for Wednesday and Lake Needwood Leaves

November Night
By Adelaide Crapsey

With faint dry sound,
Like steps of passing ghosts,
The leaves, frost-crisp'd, break from the trees
And fall.


We finally passed the 90-day mark and were able to get our bivalent Covid boosters, which was the major event of my Tuesday after a morning of chores -- a drive to Walgreens in Potomac Village, filling out the forms (again) because the online versions didn't go through this time any better than last time, waiting, and getting the shot, which so far is making me a bit tired but no major side effects, huzzah. It was overcast all day but no rain, so we got to take a walk in the afternoon, too. 

My Voyager group watched "Demon" -- I thought I remembered clones, mostly because I remembered fan fiction involving clones, and I forgot how stupid the science of the clones was, but it's still mostly a fun episode as long as I don't think about it for more than five seconds. Then we watched The School For Good and Evil, not just silly but in most ways a straight rip-off of Harry Potter and the stories Harry Potter ripped off in turn, but all girl power so entertaining. Leaf color at Lake Needwood: 



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Tuesday, October 25, 2022

Poem for Tuesday and South Mountain Cows

The Two Trees
By William Butler Yeats

Beloved, gaze in thine own heart,
The holy tree is growing there;
From joy the holy branches start,
And all the trembling flowers they bear.
The changing colours of its fruit
Have dowered the stars with merry light;
The surety of its hidden root
Has planted quiet in the night;
The shaking of its leafy head
Has given the waves their melody,
And made my lips and music wed,
Murmuring a wizard song for thee.
There the Loves a circle go,
The flaming circle of our days,
Gyring, spiring to and fro
In those great ignorant leafy ways;
Remembering all that shaken hair
And how the wing├Ęd sandals dart,
Thine eyes grow full of tender care:
Beloved, gaze in thine own heart.

Gaze no more in the bitter glass
The demons, with their subtle guile,
Lift up before us when they pass,
Or only gaze a little while;
For there a fatal image grows
That the stormy night receives,
Roots half hidden under snows,
Broken boughs and blackened leaves.
For all things turn to barrenness
In the dim glass the demons hold,
The glass of outer weariness,
Made when God slept in times of old.
There, through the broken branches, go
The ravens of unresting thought;
Flying, crying, to and fro,
Cruel claw and hungry throat,
Or else they stand and sniff the wind,
And shake their ragged wings; alas!
Thy tender eyes grow all unkind:
Gaze no more in the bitter glass.


I had four chores to get done on Monday and I finished two and two halves -- holiday exchange finished for now, scanning of documents done, photo uploads partially done, laundry would have been complete except for a cat incident that required doing an extra load. So that occupied my time while it was chilly and drizzly, then we took a walk when it was warmer and smelled like fall, which was lovely. 

Kristen and I are watching The Rings of Power together and started tonight, so we had a quick dinner before that, and afterward we watched the new Doctor Who, which I forgot was on this week and ran into a small spoiler on Twitter that made me immediately want to watch, though there were so many other gifts in that episode that I heartily recommend it! Cows at South Mountain Creamery:








Monday, October 24, 2022

Greetings from Lake Needwood

Most of Sunday was as gorgeous as Saturday, though we got rain at sunset that's on and off now. We had a pretty quiet morning of reading and hanging out with cats, ate veggie sausages and eggs for lunch, and met Kay and Chris at Lake Needwood, where we walked around the lake with their dog Lila and saw leaves in every possible color (plus a couple of turtles). Then we went to Roots Market to get nuts and various foodstuffs. 

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My track record of teams winning when I don't watch continued as the Ravens beat the Browns, but we got to see the Phillies take the pennant over the Padres and we just watched Miami beat Pittsburgh in the hope that our not watching the Yankees would cause them to lose (yet to be determined but it's 6-5 Astros). We did take a break to watch Interview with the Vampire, which made some changes from the book to Claudia but it makes for a great story. 


Sunday, October 23, 2022

Greetings from South Mountain

Quickie after a gorgeous Saturday that we spent on and around South Mountain. Our planned first stop, Gambrill State Park for lunch, was inaccessible by the usual roads so we ended up deciding to skip it, and instead we brought our picnic to Washington Monument State Park, ate at the picnic tables down by the play equipment, then hiked up across the Appalachian Trail to the monument and went up to see the raptors (though we saw far more ladybugs)! Then we went to Gathland State Park, whose museum was open, a rarity in our experience, including a building with Civil War artifacts that we had never seen. There were also ladybugs all over the war correspondents' memorial there. 

After avoiding geese in the road and wild turkeys heading into a cornfield, we ended up at South Mountain Creamery, which had live music and hayrides to a pumpkin patch and was therefore more crowded than usual when we went to visit the cows and goats and to buy ice cream. We stopped at Giant on the way home, watched the glorious ends of the Maryland-Northwestern game and the Astros-Yankees game, took a break to watch The Girl King, which was a little slow getting started but well acted and generally enjoyable, and then caught up with the Phillies as they caught up, plus we checked the Washington-California game and got to hear Marshawn Lynch drop a lot of swear words live. 

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