Monthly Archives: June 2012

A Southfork Summer

I think I get it now. For years I never quite understood the excitement of another new Star Wars or Batman movie. And what was all that hype about Battlestar Gallactica about? You can’t change gender of the protagonist and expect loyalty. Why watch at all if there is no Dirk Benedict 2.0?

After last night’s Dallas marathon, I get it.

Bobby was a bit grayer, I loved that Sue Ellen was back, and who couldn’t love another Cliff Barnes v. Ewings plot twist? But the most epic returning character was JR. JR in a nursing home? Yeah right. Not for long. Oil on Southfork was just the miracle cure he needed.  Those eyebrows and the sinister lighting let viewers know that JR was still trouble. Those scenes could have been campy, but the fast paced introduction of familiar children now grown up was a great way to deflect any trace of campiness. The years between episodes have not softened JR. Nor have they made him less inclined to treat his family as family. In an unexpected twist, he seems out to cheat his son out of the oil he’s found on Southfork.

The clothes. The fast cars. Wednesday nights just got a whole lot better.

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Latin Detours

I stopped at Whole Foods the other day to see if they had my favorite sherry back in stock. Score! The Good Stuff. Osborne oloroso. Guess I am a bit snobbish about it, but one sip detours me back to high school and I am in the Osborne Bodega in Puerta de Santa Maria, Spain sipping the wines and nibbling on cheese, bits of ham and olives.  Add in the flamenco beat of a Gipsy Kings CD and the tropical rainstorm disappears.

Things Spanish have been on my mind since I read about the passing of Carlos Fuentes, one of  my all-time favorite authors. For six weeks I have scribbled my thoughts, but nothing seems worthy of sharing, so, on a dark and stormy night, I compromise.

His Chac Mool was the first short story I read in Spanish. Gracias, Srta. V. Oddly enough, it was the same year as my Spanish adventure.  Spanish classes at Marycrest College expanded my love of his writing with La Muerte de Artemio Cruz.  It wasn’t until I’d been teaching for about 10 years that I began reading his works in English. Gracias, Barnes & Noble. The Buried Mirror,  a celebration of Spanish and Latin American cultures, captivated not only me, but my students. Commissioned by the Spanish government for the Quincentennial celebration of Columbus’ 1492 voyage, this book and accompanying five-part television special introduced millions of people to the handsome, erudite author and statesman who introduced and narrated the beautifully balanced episodes. Somehow he found a way to celebrate the discovery and honor the New World.

Paging through the stack of his books beside my reading chair, trying to decide which book to revisit, is a perfect way to ignore the deluge outside. The music stops and I notice that the rain’s temporarily diminished. I listen to the frogs croak in celebration of the rain as I pour another glass, switch the CD to some Mana, and return to the book waiting in my chair.

Tropical Storm Beryl’s Aftermath

Last weekend was a rainy washout. Sunday evening a blue heron was standing at the edge of the pond looking up to the sky, judging how soon he’d have to take cover from the storm band moving in. About midnight the eye of the storm reached us.  I was quilting with the sun porch doors open when, all of a sudden, the wind slowed and in blew the joyous sounds of frogs celebrating the rain. Nothing can be bad if the frogs are singing! The next evening when I went out to check on the building and my car (no damages, thank goodness), the heron was back standing guard on the pond, the water had risen about a foot.

The glare of the flash reflecting on underside

This weekend was perfectly sunny so I checked the batteries in the camera and went out to see what’s new. Mushrooms are poppin’ up all over the place. I didn’t want to take the usual from the top or side zooming it in so I experimented with setting the camera at an interesting angle that looked as if I were going to capture the mushroom of choice and clicked the shutter. There are some very interesting shots that I am starting to sketch in thread for future posts.

A "blind shot" -- Camera positioned on the ground, pointed toward mushrooms