Saturday, April 30, 2016

Vondalee Makes an Appearance

I was on my way home from the plant nursery when I caught sight of this convertible and my jaw dropped. Not that I'm blown away by old cars (though this was much like some I remember from my high school years) but because this is the car belonging to the main character in a short story I'm writing.

I followed the car for a while, hoping the woman driving it would turn in at the grocery store where I was headed but, alas, it was not to be.

Here's the opening of the story titled  "Vondalee Puts on Her Cat's Eye Glasses" :

Vondalee puts on her cat’s eye glasses with the diamonds on the edges and checks her lipstick in the mirror. Revlon’s Fire and Ice has always been her signature color, just as Emeraude is her scent. Back when she was a senior in high school she read in some magazine – Mademoiselle? Glamor? – about the importance of having a beauty signature and she has stuck by her choices ever since. The girls at the doctor’s office always comment that they can tell it’s her in the waiting room, just by the waft of her perfume.

            The white felt of the poodle skirt has yellowed and the waistband won’t meet but Vondalee has a big old diaper pin to hold it shut and she drapes a cardigan over her shoulders to hide the gap. It’s her best sweater -- baby pink angora with a precious kitty cat made of black sequins on the front. She frowns as she sees the sequins of the cat’s curling tail hanging loose and makes a mental note to get SueEllen to tack them down later.

Vondalee eyes the faded shoe box that holds the black and white saddle shoes with red rubber soles. She adored those shoes -- they really completed this outfit. But there's no point even getting the box off the shelf what with the bunions on her feet. The ugly sandals the foot doctor put her into will have to do. She will rise above her feet.

She’s stayed close to home ever since the hip operation – watching soap operas and never going anywhere but to church and to the doctor and to the grocery store with SueEllen where she can ride around on one of those little scooters. Like some old lady, she thinks. Time I got out on my own, like I used to. Time I got back to where I used to be.

Just a taste -- I'm about half way through the story and can't wait to see what Vondalee gets up to . . . and where she's going.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Sometimes I Have Apocalyptic Nightmares . . .

Manipulated from original image by Kena Betancuria-AFP/Getty Images

 . . . and I dream that a huge number of my fellow Americans think that a vulgarian with a fourth grade vocabulary and a kindergarten mentality would be a good president for the USA. I imagine this egotistical, know-nothing, bloviating disaster engaged in talks with leaders of other countries and I wake up shaking, hardly able to breathe.

Then I am faced with the chilling realization that I'm even more terrified by the smarmy, evangelical, would-be Messiah that is the alternative on the (R)ight side of the ticket.

Someone wake me up again.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Greener Pastures

The cows gathered around the hay ring are about to have a nice surprise. 

This one, on babysitting duty, wonders what's up.

John has used a bucket of sweet feed to toll the herd down to the little pasture by the hard road. Justin is behind them, ready to turn any who might want to go back to the hay ring.

As if! Most of these girls remember the nice green pastures across the road and are in favor of the move, especially since our pastures are cropped close now.

Two of our neighbors across the way who no longer keep cows have once again offered us the use of their pastures. It's mutually beneficial -- we don't have to buy hay and their pastures don't grow up and go back to woods. 

Even the grass just on the other side of the fence is a treat.

Everyone's got the idea now and they're eager for that greener grass.

It's all new to the calfies but they're happy to follow their mamas.

Through the gap they go!

And into the Promised Land!

There's even an idyllic little stream . . . and acres of fresh green grass. Cow Heaven!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Purple Plain

No, this isn't meant as a tribute to Prince though if you like to consider it as such, that's fine with me.

I don't have anything against the late artist -- it's just that my involvement with pop music pretty much ended with the Sixties and I couldn't hum one of Prince's songs if you put a gun to my head. (I couldn't have even named one a week ago but the internet has remedied that.)

But when I looked through the pictures I took yesterday, there was so much purple . . .

The columbine . . .

The wisteria going crazy on the porch of the Gran House . . .

The first irises . . .

Wisteria at the pond . . . 

The centaura . . . and more wisteria. Such a beautiful time!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Earth Day 2016


 Every  day is Earth Day around here, especially in the Spring.

John did the tilling and I've been hand weeding the asparagus and my creepy garden, as well as pruning back the black pussy willow that was making too much shade.

There was enough asparagus to provide a gracious plenty for supper. 

And I had seeds to plant -- look at that nifty radish!

A young toad kept an eye on me to make sure I didn't forget the purple carrots . . .

And the asparagus takes a bow, topped with red bell pepper sauteed in butter and lemon juice and accompanied by potatoes with dill and chicken roasted with rosemary and lemon.

Love that first harvest!