Hybrid Calendula

We bought a couple of different varieties of calendula, which apparently decided they were a great match, and have self-sown. The hybrids are just wild, with a range of colors, shapes, and sizes. We shared a bunch with some friends & transplanted as many as we could to other parts of the yard. There are still dozens to dig out and encourage, and it’s worth the effort!

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Nothing much to share. We’ve been isolating, of course, and even stopped visiting the farmer’s market about a month ago. Grocery delivery means we’re only leaving the house to walk through the neighborhood. I’m considering getting a trickle charger for the car, simply because the only time it goes anywhere is if we need to visit a doctor; we’re being very good about brushing our teeth, as that’s on hold for a while as well.

I hope you have some flowers in your life. If not, they’re cheap, and a real joy – just don’t get sidetracked by the gophers (new plants are cheaper than traps, in more ways than one).

-D

Emo Statuary

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Dramatic Man Is Dramatic No, really – Dra-Ma-Tique.

I continue to go through our photos, weeding out the cruft. There are now only 101 photos in the Glasgow Botanic Gardens set, having removed 59 which were … well, crummy, or redundant, or blurry, etc. I’m finding about 1/4 to 1/3 of them are simply not all that great. I have a period I call my Orange Period, as I didn’t know about white balance & every bloody thing in Scotland is lit by mercury vapor lamps. I have a period where I really must have had my monitor set to insane brightness, as those photos are pretty uniformly dark (and not awesome, so no point in reviving them from raw).

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And then there’s the man and his monkey. Monkey

I’ve just bought a gimbal for the camera, as I’m tasked with taking some video of the choir, outside. Hopefully this will mean some improvement in still pictures, as well. I’m not sure it’s going to be better than the optical stabilization in the lenses, but I’m pretty sure they’ll complement each other nicely.

Enjoy the weekend!

-D

Unicorns

I happened across an article in the Paris Review about the Unicorn tapestries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York; Rockefeller apparently obtained them and gifted them – and I’m not sure how I feel about the originals living in NYC. In any event, they reminded me of having watched the weavers at Stirling Castle, as they worked over the course of years, to re-weave the pieces.

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Keeping in mind these weavings are something like 10 feet / 3 meters wide, and as tall as the ceiling, they represent an immense amount of labor. I think I’m more impressed that Historic Scotland essentially had full-time labor over the course of something like 7 years, to produce replicas.

-D

Glasgow University

Most of the time, getting to Glasgow University sucked. But, most of the time in Scotland, getting places sucked, because it was inevitably cold, and probably either snowy or wet or both (“wintry mix”). There are days that make up for it, though, and those days were glorious. Being able to walk through a real park on the way to school was a real joy (when it didn’t suck).

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For an American, walking through a park & looking up at this university, realizing that you attend here. Well, it’s a bit of a thrilling feeling. This is something special, different, exotic. This has history we don’t have. The university was founded in 1451, so it’s bound to have history.

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For all that we loved looking at the main building, I only ever had a few meetings in there. A conference.

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We had choir rehearsals in the chapel attached to the main building, and so came to love wandering about the buildings, visiting our favorite trees, etc. And I did get to climb to the top of the tower, to photograph Kelvingrove Museum from above.

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Glasgow – the filthy city – was home for maybe the longest we’ve had a city that felt like home. We lived in Glasgow from 2007 through 2012. Our friends there would think I’m crazy, but I’d move back tomorrow.

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-D

Travel

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It seems just yesterday that we were off to Hawaii, to visit Julia and say hello to a tropical island. We went, we photographed, and pretty much no travel has happened since.

I hope you are all avoiding the smoke, here on the west coast. I will make the weekly pilgrimage to farmer’s market, Sunday morning: 15 minutes of outdoor buying.

-D

Fiberglass Cows

Fiberglass cows. This one’s decorating the sign outside the race car track.

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They’re not as glamor-seeking as the Sonoma County, maybe. Or perhaps it’s just that this one was in Edinburgh and it tends to be a bit less cattle-friendly?

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The Netherlands, of course. There’s also a porcelain cow in the pictures of Delft, but … we’re sticking with the fiberglass ones. At least there’s some connection, with this one being in front of a cheese shop.

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This one … was simply in the awkward space down the central well of a building.

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-David

Self Sowing Seeds

Through the years we’ve done vegetable gardens, with maybe a few flowers thrown in as a row border or something. This year we’re really only (successfully) doing flowers.

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I can catch the morning glories before the pods pop if I check up on them, but that’s just for fun, because there’s no way I’ll get them all, and I don’t want to really. The nasturtiums are just easy to find. The other flowers have already self sown by the dozens. This should be fun!

– D

Heidelberg from the Castle

Looking through photos reminded me of what a different world we’re in, compared to just twenty years ago. In 1999 we went to the Netherlands, Germany, and France. We took a train from Amsterdam to Kaiserslautern but got turned around and missed a connection. So we found a payphone and called our friend, who was at home waiting to hear from us, and on we went. It was normal, before cell phones, to be completely at the mercy of whomever decides where payphones go and upon your friend being home, waiting.

Heidelberg

It was also normal to take maybe a hundred pictures on a week’s vacation. We may have taken perhaps 250, but would have been cautious, because every one cost money to develop. And so we have pictures like this one, where I dearly wish I had a few hundred more from which to choose. As photos go, meh. As a memory….

– D