Thursday, March 31, 2011


Bulbs are like surprise presents we give ourselves in the Fall, but don't open until Spring, after we've forgotten what's inside. I'd totally forgotten about the KH iris until they came up.

Katharine Hodgkin iris and chionodoxa, both came into bloom just in the last few days. The rhubarb leaves are unfurling. The daffodils are opening today as well. It's one of those balmy early Spring days that takes you by surprise, and suddenly you're behind on everything! Ack! How did that happen? It was snowing last week! I must plant seeds this weekend, cut back the old dead foliage, and get things ready.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Vacuum Filled?

We may have a new cat.

Hubby noticed a cat hanging around over the weekend. He saw it run under the bushes and heard it meow, but didn't get a good look. Then on Monday afternoon I saw it sunning itself on the gravel in the garden area across from our side door. It was curled up in front of three old tumbleweeds that had blown there over the winter. At first I thought it was just another tumbleweed, but then it meowed at us.

We were just going out, but we stopped to see if it would let us pet it. Surprisingly it didn't run as we walked over, and after a few seconds it came to us and was very friendly. She's female, and either not very big or less than a year old - hard to say. But she's very affectionate and so far has been quite civilized in the house.

We've asked around a bit, and called the local cat shelter. They haven't had any inquiries about her. And they said that a lot of the cats they see are left behind by people who move away and just leave their cat. Why anyone would want to leave this cat I don't understand. She's very nice, well-behaved and seems to love everyone.

Anyway, we're taking care of her for now. There are probably a few more local neighbors we could ask, but it's looking more and more likely that we have ourselves a cat. We'll see...

Friday, March 18, 2011

Kind of a Rotten Week

We had a great time at the Portland SCD workshop and ball. I wore my dance sneakers for part of each class, then changed to ballet slippers. It seemed to help. I would have worn the dance sneakers the whole time but unfortunately they're a bit narrow in the toes, which pushed my left big toe over far enough to become painful after an hour or so. I've never been completely happy with the darn things, and now it looks like I can't wear them for more than two hours at a time.

There were other people there with a different make of dance sneaker that looked wider in the toe. I may have to find a pair like those instead. It does make a difference to my plantar fascitis when I have to stand for long periods in a dance class. If dance sneakers are what it takes to get through a long workshop class, then that's what it takes.

Anyway, I was able to do more than I expected during the day. Then Carol and I went out for dinner right away, and back to the hotel room. I soaked my feet in cold water for a bit, and we got ready for the ball.

I'd also expected I wouldn't be able to do more than half the dances at the ball. But in fact, I did at least two thirds of the program or more! I had to walk one or two, but even that wasn't as painful as it could have been. So we had a good time. The drive up went really well, sunny and dry. The drive back was windy and wet most of the time. Not snowy or icy, but not easy driving either. We got to Meridian about 10:30pm, and I got home around 11. Pretty good.

Then Tuesday was my sister's birthday. It was also the day she ended up having to take her dog in to the vet to be put to sleep. Callie suddenly started having a lot of trouble breathing, her gums were blue-ish, and she was having a lot of trouble getting up in time to go potty. Rather than waiting until Callie couldn't walk at all and then not be able to lift or carry her, or letting her suffocate because she couldn't breathe, Brenda decided to take her in. It was very sad. I lived there over a year, so Callie was a tiny bit my dog too, for a time. I stopped by to give Brenda a b-day present just a little while after she got home from the vet, so we talked and cried a bit.

As it happened, that was the same day our cat, Falfi, didn't come home in the evening as usual. He does roam outside, but he always comes back at night. He likes sitting on Ken's lap too much to stay out. It was odd he didn't come back because it was raining most of the afternoon and continued raining all night.

We looked in the morning but didn't find him. It's been 72 hours now and no sign. We're beginning to think the worst. We've been out looking each day in different places. We both miss Falfi. He's a good cat. But it's harder on Ken, since he spent so much time w/ Falfi at home.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A Big Project Started

Pagyesa Temple, outside Daegu, S. Korea. Looking upwards at the painted eaves.

I started a big project yesterday. Got a lot of the organizing done, which was the un-fun part that's been holding me back. Figured out where my Korea weekly journal was on the old laptop and copied from the emails into a document file, and went through all the photo CD's to figure out the chronological order. Hopefully I still remember well enough that I can put the pictures to the things I talk about in the journal. There are hundreds of photos. Not sure how many hundreds, but I was there a year and took roll after roll of 36 exposure film. This was back when digital cameras were still pretty expensive, so it was all Fuji film. Fortunately I got good advice and had all the pictures put onto CD disc when I got them developed. I kept the paper photos in order in little albums, and made sure to write my journal in enough detail that I hoped I could match them up later. We'll see.

Next, I'm trying to figure out where I'll put them (online), and how I want to organize everything. So far I'm thinking of a Flickr dump, then using selected photos linked from there in a separate blog about my year in Korea. It's a big job. So it'll take me a while. Just not sure of the most effective way to do it, yet.