Monday, August 30, 2010

Local news at 11:19

Packing is really hard and especially this time as all we are taking is carry-on luggage. As it is, I chase myself through the day, picking up after myself and trying to figure out where I put the damn thing and things and where the hell is it? and now I have to plan what I am going to be wearing and needing for a month and a half. ARG! One thing I did decide. I'm not bringing my bubblegum pink tshirt even though it does say COEXIST. Anyway, back to work. Time's running out.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Babette's Lucky Day

This morning about 6 AM the magpies were screaming like hell so I went out to see what all the ruckus was about. Just then Babette (the squirrel formerly known as Bob) came skidding around the corner at top speed, blasted by and dove under the lilac bush, the cat coming behind her like a steely gray ground missile. Babette took advantage of the distraction, did a 180 and shot back to the Bird Park and I chased the fucking cat off in the opposite direction. It clawed its way up and disappeared over the fence and presumable went back to it's own yard. Talk about lucky. The magpies hate cats. This isn't the first time we've double teamed the bastards.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Return of Bob or is he Babette?

I don't have any new photos of little Leo but I hear he is happily nursing at all hours of the night.

But Bob is back and I not only got more photos of him, here's an :11 sec. short of him dining on a tiny sunflower. One thing though. On closer examination, it seems Bob may be a girl.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Baby Leo, one day old

Here he is.

Baby Leo, one day old.

We got to meet him last night on skype, hence the grainy photos but still... such a beautiful, beautiful little boy. He's far far away in Montana so I'm so grateful for even this.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

FOX News and Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal

Here's one for the brain drain....

Jon Stewart points out how Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, a New Corps co-owner, is the same man FOX News accuses of funding terrorism. You can watch the hilarious, astute revelation of this FOX News circle jerk here.

Prince Alwaleed heads a board of directors meeting attended by
News Corporation executives. (AN photo)

Monday, August 23, 2010

There is a baby!

"There is a baby."

This was the message our very exhausted son-in-law left on our answering machine today.

Happy Birthday Baby!

He was born this evening. I don't know much more than that, just got the call, but it sounds like all's well. So, whew and YAY! More later.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Baby Watch 11, tomorrow's the day.

No more waiting. Tomorrow they will induce labor.

Baby Watch 10, the time has come

It is now two weeks past the due date so tomorrow, unless the baby comes today, they are going to induce labor.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Baby Watch 9 or Tumbleweeds to Black Rock

It's that time again so...

my G'ville expat friends now living in Mexico showed up the other day. They are like human tumbleweeds...

that blow in from the Sonora Desert enroute to the Black Rock Desert where they do the Hokey Pokey Consortium

then blow back to Mexico. As usual, I'm not attending. I have no interest in hanging out on a wind ravaged desert playa for a week even with The Spectacle. Is that so wrong?

Anyway, September 1 we leave for Florida then Costa Rica, in all for a month and a half. And yes. We are still waiting for Baby.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Baby Watch 8 or Equation for BABY + Dinosaur Plant

And now in a Language Barrier exclusive.....

a renown mystery guest blogger aka the Itinerant Mathematician I encountered wandering in a desert dust storm on the Black Rock playa or was it somewhere outside of Las Vegas?, aka my brother (not the guy on the bike), combines the pure art and science of poetry and mathematics in this brilliant proof showing that indeed patience IS virtue, virtue IS grace and put TOGETHER make a very pretty face + Dinosaur Plant in bottom right-hand corner. Thank you Itinerant Mathematician.

(Click for a better look)

All available sizes here.

And thus and still... we wait.

Baby Watch 7 or Power of Pretty Face + Magic of Dinosaurs

“Patience is a virtue,
Virtue is a grace;

Both put together
Make a very pretty face”

~ Anonymous

Anita recently graduated from the University of Montana with a Masters in Accounting so it seems fitting, given that we are still waiting for her to go into labor, some math is in order. My brother is a scientist so I asked him if he would kindly provide us with a tidy little equation for the occasion. As always, he graciously agreed. Thanks, lil' bro. It's great having a scientist in the family.

Okay. Here's the deal. This morning Kristiana noticed that her Dinosaur Plant was dry. Now, the box says that the Dinosaur Plant represents the coming of new life and Baby Thea was born the day she put the Dinosaur Plant in water. Coincidence or science? Seems like science to me.

Anyway, at this point, we've got nothing to lose so Kristiana re-hydrated the Dinosaur Plant and Brother Jim will soon be sending in an equation weaving together the power of patience, virtue, Anita's lovely face and the magic of the Dinosaurs.

Asa Nisi Masa!

Now..... we wait.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Baby watch VI, or otherwise titled SpongeBob at the Alberta

Thea and me watching SpongeBob SquarePants

As we are still waiting for the New Baby to make her/his appearance, here are a few photos from the Alberta to help pass the time. The Alberta is the quirky place we stayed last week while in Montana waiting for the baby to arrive. We had reserved one of the Alberta's tiny studio apartments but ended up swapping places with Baby Thea and her Mom as the room they had turned out to be a baby death trap caboose.


We lucked out. We got the Burlington Northern at the Annex across the street. Okay it's a death trap but, that aside, for $35 a night (kitchen included!), it is the best deal in town. Plus Swami and Pete the Mule loved the window seat. (You can barely see Swami in this photo but, trust me, he can see you).

The Annex is the Great Falls version of Wonderland. It's funky as hell, but there is method in the madness, that is if being an "RV" park beats the building codes. In any case, it's a fun place in spite of also being a disaster waiting to happen, whether in the form of a big building code violations bust, someone breaks their neck slipping in the mud or the whole place just burns to the ground due to faulty wiring.

It looks like these truck cabs might even be available soon, unless the mattresses inside are just extra. But a word to the wise... if you want to stay at the Annex, schedule that Great Falls vacation sooner than later. No telling how long the magic will last.

However, I don't recommend the Burlington Northern if you are a baby or you plan to do the kind of drinking that leaves you crawling around the floor like one. One slip on these sharp metal stairs and you may lose a toe, a few teeth, or perhaps your head.

The Burlington Northern. Treacherous but cheap fun.
Hell, that should be our motto wherever we go.

Detail of fine decor.

Views from the front deck. I wished I could have peeked inside the other places but the Annex residents didn't seem the "howdy neighbor" type.

The lady in the Sweetheart Suite was especially standoffish. There is tinfoil on her window although clearly she has fashioned a few peep holes in it. Whenever I went out to the car for something she opened her door, looked around, then quickly shut it again all without making eye contact.

All in all, the Annex is a work in progress. I'm not sure the fire engine is quite ready for anyone to call it home but the old U Haul truck is.

This cabin is currently under construction. Judging by the truck load of logs they just dumped in front of it, we're guessing it will be transformed into an Abe Lincoln cabin on wheels.

Compared to the hairy bed Motel 6 in Ely, the Annex was a dream although Motel 6 really wasn't that bad. After spending the night there, I can happily report that it was quiet and, within reason, quiet trumps hairy.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Baby watch V

Mother Rabbit's Magic Lamp
With time and patience the mulberry leaf becomes a silk gown.
~Chinese proverb~

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Baby watch IV

The baby is now a full week "late". If she/he doesn't come by next Sunday, the doctor will induce labor. Unfortunately, we had to leave today as did Yasna and Vinko, Anita's sister and brother. They, and their mother, came all the way from Norway for the birth but, though she will stay a few more weeks, they were out of time. Bummer. Of course, what matters is that everything goes well and the baby is healthy but damn. We all really wanted to be there.

Mr. Lee and I made it to Elko Nevada this evening after 12 hours on the road and are spending the night at the Motel 6. It's a nasty place. The sheets are rumpled with hairs on them left from the last occupants or series of occupants. Who knows how many people have slept on them before us? Lovely, eh?

On the upside, I finished reading the Pisan Cantos aloud this afternoon as we drove south through Idaho on Hwy 93. At the same time we were roughly due west of Hailey, Pound's birthplace. Coincidence?

Excerpt from Ezra Pound's "Pisan Cantos," section LXXXI, read by the poet

"What thou lovest well remains, the rest is dross
What thou lov'st well shall not be reft from thee
What thou lov'st well is thy true heritage
Whose world, or mine or theirs or is it of none?
First came the seen, then thus the palpable Elysium, though it were in the halls of hell,
What thou lovest well is thy true heritage
What thou lov'st well shall not be reft from thee"

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Baby watch lll

Still no baby. I thought maybe he/she was waiting for Friday the 13th but no such luck. We did have a helluva rain storm though and Gpa Lee and I got to babysit Baby Thea while everyone else (maternal grandma and grandpa, aunties and uncle, new mom and dad) went to the world famous Sip-n-dip Lounge, home of the Great Falls merman. We leave in the morning... baby or not :(

But the maternal grandparents are staying so at least there's that.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Baby watch ll

No baby yet. It's two days past the due date.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Baby watch

Kooskia Idaho, wide spot in the road between a mountain and a river.

We left home about 7 am this morning. It's a two day drive from where we live in Nevada to Great Falls Montana. Mr. Lee is driving and I am reading Pound's Pisan Cantos to us over the engine and road noise. The combination is mind altering. I nearly finished them before we got to Kooskia where we are staying the night in the town's only motel. Our youngest son and his wife are expecting their first child any day and, if we're lucky, we'll get to Great Falls before the Big Event.

Kooskia was very lovely this evening. Twilight made it seem more like a stage set than a "real" place.

We ate at the China Cafe, one of Kooskia's two restaurants. I highly recommend it. We had a surprisingly good vegetarian dinner there. Even the fortune cookies were delicious.

My fortune read: "A pleasant surprise is in store for you in the near future."

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Here are a few more photos from Chinatown in Oakland. It's nothing but I enjoy photographing the layered perspectives caught in window reflections.