This is a complement to Advogato, it is an aggregation of blogs of those who used to post on Advogato, but for one reason or another moved their blog from Advogato. It is provided as a service to those who would like to read the "greater Advogato" community.
This site works only as a Planet, it aggregates the post only, to comment on a blog entry, click on the title or time to go to the blog entry on the original site, hopefully it will have a comment facility.
Yesterday I drove north, past a bonfire and through an almost Sydney-severe rainsquall, to where California State Route 16 West peels off from I-505 into Yolo County. There, the sun came out and shone on the dry Capay Hills, turning them lemon and gold in front of the smudged indigo mountains behind them.
I wanted so badly to go into those warm yellow hills! And then Highway 16 took me around a corner and into Rumsey Canyon, carved out of the stone by Cache Creek, all geology and cattle pasture and gnarled old oaks. I wanted so badly to get out and walk around! And then Google took me up a still narrower canyon through which Bear Creek was running and gently steaming, and I met Tina at Wilbur Hot Springs, a gorgeous place that smells in a very friendly way of eggy farts.
We soaked in the hot green sulfurous water, shared bread and cheese and salami and radishes and olives and champagne and a little chocolate, rode bikes through the nature preserve, past the geyser to the wind chime forest, and talked about books and politics and our children and our partners and the parties we used to throw in the 90s and her painting and my writing and her sister, my friend Jen. We were urged to leave our electronics behind, and I did, so I don’t have any pictures, sorry about that.
Tina and I don’t see each other often enough and this has to be changed. As I drove back, the near-full moon rose on my left through a pink band of sunset. It followed me home to the city.
Today I drove south to a stable in the redwoods, where Salome and I saddled up and rode two bright gold pony mares through the forest to a chain of meadows in the sun. We talked about work and education and our children and her painting and my writing and our plans for the future. I stuck my iPhone in my jacket pocket, so here are some pictures for you.
We saw five mule deer, the sun pink through their absurd ears. One gentle doe was napping under the trees, curled like a cat.
California is so impossibly motherfucking beautiful sometimes, it actually kind of hurts.
My main goal in being unemployed right now is to not launch entire new projects or businesses and so far I’m being very successful in restricting myself to a zine and maybe a eventually forthcoming short series of podcasts. But the zine — a very small run for a group of friends — was fun and not very hard. I like this trend of fun and not very hard. Next in fun and not very hard is my Christmas cards.
Zero businesses launched and not counting!
We’re building up to Australia’s all-in summer, compressing what the US, say, has to spend three periods (Thanksgiving, Christmas/late December, and their summer) on into six weeks beginning mid-December. We finally made it to Wet’n’Wild for the first time this summer. We picked a grey mild day for it, which was a good decision in most respects but it turns out there’s a downside to smaller crowds. Andrew took A home after a few hours to nap, and I discovered that no queuing means riding waterslides over and over and over and over, which means getting motion sick. Especially since Wet’n’Wild, in the parent-child scenario, makes the parent ride the raft facing backwards. But once I convinced a sceptical V to give me a break on the relentless stair climbing, raft-hauling, and being ill on slides, I had more fun. Wet’n’Wild is a two parent experience for sure. Liking speed and getting motion sick is my curse.
For better or for worse I’ve reached the age where my expat friends don’t come home for summer any more. So in the next few weeks we merely have a trip to my family, an extended family gathering, a friend’s annual houseparty, birthday drinks, the Google party for children, and carols. Also, hoping to squeeze a few beach trips in there. We are also rushing up on V’s last weeks at his current school, with three weeks to go yesterday. He is fortunately fairly excited if anything to go to a new, larger, school with children whom he knows from the neighbourhood. I still feel bad that he also won’t get the experience I longed for, of going to the same damn school for the whole primary years. A big part of my attraction to buying a house — in Sydney! — was to have access to that for them, so fingers crossed from here on in.
Well, it's been a long time since I posted here, but still...
I read LJ very regularly, and someone (you know who you are) just described a claim as "arrant nonsense". ¿So, wisdom of LJ, what is the difference between "patent nonsense", which I speak, and "arrant nonsense", which my friend speaks?
1. With my dearest darling bad horse Boo Bear living out his retirement at a lovely farm upstate (no, really, he aten’t ded), I have a new horse, Sam. He is a liver chestnut so dark and shiny that he looks like he was cast in bronze or, possibly, treacle. He is scopey and athletic but also kind and forgiving, sensitive yet gentle as a lamb. He is an education. He makes me a better rider.
2. The worst of grief bogs you down in the past. As I feel myself starting to come out of it, I’ve been getting these little glimpses of a future I might like to live in, enough that I’ve been making a list: Aziz Ansari’s new comedy Master of None, Trevor Noah as host of The Daily Show and, of course, on endless repeat, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton.
It is difficult to say anything about the massacres in Paris, except how sorry I am for those who have been hurt, and how desperately I wish for peace.
4. I tried to make pavlova for Mum’s birthday, a pretty Quixotic endeavor considering I’ve never yet succeeded at meringue. After two dismal failures to achieve glossy peaks, I stuck a sort of eggy soup in the oven, wept briefly and discovered online that our Bamix is almost certainly the problem. It doesn’t introduce enough air to allow the egg white to achieve the proper foaminess. So I ordered a hand mixer and just now, the egg soup came out of the oven as a delicately browned giant cookie, which we all look forward to eating.
5. “Brown liquor,” said Jeremy after he had mopped up my eggy tears. I poured us two glasses of the 12 year old Bunnahabhain and we clinked our glasses: “To Jean.” My mother gave me my love for animals and my righteous anger at the world’s injustices, and she was a much better pastrychef than I am. I miss her every day, but I am very, very glad that she was my mother.