Thursday, June 27, 2024

I'm still here

The red rosepath towels are done and mostly hemmed. I put eight towels on the web page today. The loom is tied up and I think I'll weave the light blue next.

I believe I like the roses with no path best. Here is a one over one comparison:

Or perhaps deeper rows of roses before the path. We'll see.

In other news, we had an astounding presentation last weekend. A group named Matsiko performed. It is a troop of orphaned children, mostly from Liberia, singing songs in their language. The songs were accompanied by energetic dancing and footwork.

The first two photos need to be animated to convey the volume and dancing. Here is a video from earlier this year. The singers circulated in the audience during their opening number, shaking all the hands they could reach.

After the performance the children ate supper with us. There were three at out table. but the girl at the end of the table was off for more ice cream, dessert. All three ate plenty of supper, and plenty of ice cream.

The girl across from me was eighteen, the girl next to me sixteen and the one off for more ice cream was the group's youngest at fifteen. This last also had a sister in the group, as did Elizabeth, across the table. 

Among our three we had a future doctor, geologist and undecided. That and a bit about their life on the road was all we could elicit. They simply did not stop talking and had been primed with endless questions to keep us talking.

How old are you?

How many children do you have? What do they do?

Where have you lived?

What did you do?

And on and on and on. Irrepressible. And maybe high on ice cream.

Sunday, June 16, 2024

Where have you been?

It's Sunday morning. I'm doing laundry. There are two machines in our laundry room, and generally I am using one and Sandy the other. But this morning EMS took Sandy to the clinic. I teased Maddie, the other machine is free this morning. Old folks humor.

I did eat breakfast with Maddie in the atrium, after she watered the plants. This is the other atrium, the one I pass every morning, going to breakfast. The Japanese dogwood is in full bloom. The other atrium is surrounded with plants that Maddie and our activities director, Joan, take care of. 

That atrium is like working in my old gardens, except I can't, anymore. I did decide this morning I can carry the watering can on my walker tray and take care of the plants in pots, so I'll do that. I asked Laura to bring me a shovel full of pinks from the old garden.

In other family news, my oldest daughter is in Ireland, on a hiking trip around the Dingle peninsula. I'm sort of jealous, but not so much. I can't do that kind of walking any more.

The first is the Dingle Bay. The second an historical library somewhere in southern Ireland, or a train ride away from their base lodging. Perhaps another time she'll head for Omagh or Armagh, where our Presbyterian ancestors originated.

And my other daughter bought a house. Not the first but hopefully the last. This house is half a mile from her sister. Isn't it amazing, how siblings can fight like cats the first twenty years and be friends ever after.

I'm weaving red rosepath. I'm weaving the paths as well as the roses. I like the look of it and can't wait to get it fulled. That will be next week, earliest.

It's been some time since an update on our two year old construction project. It has devolved into mud. In addition, I wonder how attractive apartments renting for thousands per month will be with a view either into someone's window or the street with traffic; cars, trucks, ambulances! Anyway, here are some views:

The top picture is right out my window, across the trash strewn parking area. These apartments are several feet below grade, as you can see. There is no water retention area; they are the retention area. Aurora seems to have no master water plan in effect.

The second picture is the concrete poured between these apartments and my building. Excuse me, but wtf? Just one more nail in the flood plane problem. What about those second floor balconies! They could at least have installed beige railings!

Moving along, the third picture is the sidewalk to nowhere and a view across the parking area, stacked with excess siding, so the dump trucks bringing in dirt from who knows where have an awful time getting it dumped. The sidewalk to nowhere ends just under Kitty's window. I need to get down there and figure it out.

And finally, see that chunk of red in the last picture? That's just another piece of trash they didn't bother to pick up; all that concrete is poured over any piece of siding, pipe, drink bottle or 2x4 in the way. 

Every one I explained these problems to just rolled eyes way back and said "Not in charge!" Well, my second floor apartment won't flood, come the big storm. 

I'll take pictures when the landscaping is done. Probably next summer.

Sunday, June 2, 2024

On the road again

 A remarkably short trip this time. Last Tuesday I had a dental appointment, followed by a picnic supper at my sister's house. The dentist was not so good; more than one cavity and the same old hygienist turned surly. I do not like the modern method of tooth cleaning by water pick. As I've told her time and again, if you can't keep the water from blasting down my throat, please do the job the old fashioned way.

Dinner with Jan and Tom and Laura was fun. Standing in Jan's new kitchen and chatting was fun. And knowing that in my absence a box of new weaving thread was scheduled for delivery to my door was even more fun. Jan and I arranged that the very next day, Wednesday, she would come in the afternoon to be the official thread changer, putting on a new spool of thread when an old one ran out.

When it was on and we were clearing away the tools of the beam dressing trade, Jan said she was very pleased; the entire warp was beamed without a single knot. She used to put on rug warps that way, but wondered if we had ever managed another in our long career. I don't know.

It is lovely. The warp is also two inches wider than previous towels, twenty four inches, not twenty two. It's weaving at twenty two inches, a bit more than ten percent take up. That's good.

But to continue with the boring bit. I spent Thursday, Friday and Saturday threading heddles. This is the part that can put me to sleep, it's so mesmerizing. I'd realize suddenly I'd threaded 4-3-2-1 instead of 1-2-3-4, and that would be it for the day. There still was one threading error to straighten out this morning.

Today I started weaving Rosepath. It is lovely. So far I'm only weaving the roses, not including the path. I'll try a bit of that before I begin weaving towels for sale. The current batch are rose thread, to free up all the bobbins I wound. This time the long float, that is so good at soaking up wet, is horizontal, not vertical.

One more thing about this pattern, and then I'll leave off and go weave some more. When I used to devour old weaving patterns in interesting sources like Dover reprints or Foxfire or Whole Earth, I loved the weaving notation "tromp as writ." It's from the days when intelligence was shared on scraps of paper, and the sharer, having used a precious scrap of paper to transcribe the threading, condensed the remainder of the weaving by noting to treadle exactly as threaded. This pattern is a true tromp as writ.