September 29, 2011

One in every port

As a kid I remember reading how sailors had a sweetheart in every port. My goal is to have a friend in every port, and was delighted when I met up with one in A2. Pam is delightful and fun and we can talk for hours. And no pond scum for us. We dive deep.

We started with a tasty lunch at Mani Osteria. The fire alarm went off at the end of our meal, and wouldn't you know it - not a single person moved or even seemed to notice the migraine inducing sirens and flashing lights. I, of course, knew the location of the nearest exits. We then explored the exhibits at UMMA. Love this little museum - a local gem.

Of course, we were too busy gabbing to take any photos, so I have none to share. No pics but fond memories of a fun visit with a fellow traveler.

September 28, 2011

Banned Wagon

It is the middle of Banned Book Week. Makes you want to run out and read all the books on the list no? I have never understood what all the fuss is about. After all, a good book is meant to provoke thought, provide insight, make you change your mind, let you explore different worlds. What the heck is wrong with that?

Yeah, the problem here is that the kid was actually interested in reading a book sent home from school. Shocking indeed!

September 27, 2011


No trip to A2 can be complete without a visit to Hollander's. Love this store. Could take one of everything. Maybe two. Of course I bought supplies for my stash. Here are some candy shots from in the store.

September 26, 2011


Beautiful day in Ann Arbor (A2) yesterday so explored Main Street. Every exploration needs a place to take a break, and I quite enjoy Sweetwaters - the downtown location.

September 23, 2011

Happy Equinox

It sure does not feel like the autumnal equinox today. It has been raining on and off for the past 2 days and there is a flood warning in these parts. The rain is expected to continue for the next day or two. Have not seen the sun at all today - so kinda hard to appreciate equal parts day and night today. But it is here. The official end of summer.

There is much activity at home as we get ready for a road trip to Ann Arbor. Clothes? Check. Toys? Check. Art supplies? Check. Snacks? Check. Music and audio books for the ride? Check. Books? This used to the be the thing that always took me the longest time. How to decide? How the heck do you know what mood you'll be in when traveling? Am delighted to not have a large bag full of books to schlep around. Nook? Check.

September 20, 2011


I'm not much of a dog person. It is not that I dislike dogs as much as I dislike badly behaved dogs. And yes, I put the full blame on the owners. So imagine my delight when I saw these warnings on a morning walk in Scituate.

September 16, 2011

Recent Reads

96. The Messenger
This is #6 in the Gabriel Allon series. An interesting look at terrorism in its many forms, how Saudi Arabia funds organizations like al-Qaeda, and the uneasy relationship between the US and the Saudis. The action is fast paced, and reminded me a little of Jack Bauer - I mean the sheer pace of all that happens in a day is exhausting and makes me feel like quite the underachiever. A fun and interesting read.

97. The Good Body
This is really wonderful. If you get the chance get the audio version and listen to Eve perform the piece - so very powerful. It made me laugh and cry and think. Loved it.

98. The Lock Artist
This is the first book I've read by the author and I really liked it. An interesting story told along two time-lines about a traumatized boy who discovers that he has a much sought after skill. The voice is clear, fresh and compelling, though I did find the end a bit rushed.

September 15, 2011

Random Musings

  • I'm not usually around to watch the US Open, but this year caught the semi-finals and finals. Some of the best tennis I have ever seen. Made me want to get out my racket and play. Oh, you did not know that I play tennis? Well, I would not exactly say that I play - more along the lines of it is fun to chase those balls down. Where the heck are the ball girls when you need them?
  • Speaking of tennis, anyone else annoyed by Serena Williams and her rude behavior on the courts? And she was fined $2000. Oh right. Why even bother? I was mad enough to sent a message to both the USTA and Nike.
  • Been loving the wonderful boating weather recently. That big full moon rising over the ocean is magical.
  • Anyone else notice that sunset is getting a little earlier each night in these parts? It is a little before 7pm now and is only going to get worse. Can see why the ancients sacrificed animals and virgins to try and appease the gods. Come back sun!

September 10, 2011

Recent Reads

92. Wanderlust: Real Life Tales of Adventure and Romance
I quite enjoy travel stories, and this collection is a fun read. I dipped in now and then. Some of the stories are sublime, while others are just so-so. Well worth a read though.

93. Shadow Tag
My book club selection this month is a bleak and beautifully told story of a family falling apart. I am reminded of Tolstoy - this book is about the particulars of an unhappy family. There are parts of this book that simply made me stop and try to remember to breathe.
From page 18: "But here is the most telling thing: you wish to possess me. And my mistake: I loved you and let you think you could".

94. Shelters of Stone
I am reading the Earth's Children series this summer and this is book five. The second to last book. There is quite a bit of repetition, and the book could certainly have used some better editing, but I quite enjoyed getting lost in Ayla's world as she finally gets to meet Jondalar's people. One more to go.

95. The Coffins of Little Hope
This is a delightful story about a small town with big dramas. Lovely writing about family, the world of publishing, missing children and the fine line between fact and fiction.

September 8, 2011

Hello September

And just like that we are almost at the end of the first week of September.

The kiddies are all back in school. Love those big yellow buses that cart them around. It certainly feels like summer is over in these parts. It has been chilly and raining, and I mean pouring, all week. Am feeling rather water-logged.

So imagine my delight when I visited Roz's blog and saw a link to these journal covers - interpretations of water. Would love any one of these. You can see them here.

September 7, 2011

Recent Movies

1. Inside Job
A fascinating look at the global financial disaster.

2. The Fighter
I loved everything about this movie and think it might just be the best movie I've seen all year. Dreams. Sports. Dysfunctional family. Lowell. Incredible acting. What's not to love?

3. Biutiful
The thing about foreign films is that there is no happy bow that ties up a story. This good movie is rather bleak and covers a range of topics - illegals, family, despair, community, dreams. Bardem is luminous as always.

4. The King's Speech
Watched this last night and it knocked my socks off. This movie is simply brilliant - everything about it. And, it might have just knocked The Fighter off the number 1 spot on my list for the year.

September 5, 2011

Summer reading

Summer reading. Is anything sweeter? I'll bet that most readers start out the summer with plans on what they will read. I for one tend to read a series while I dabble with other books. This summer my series is The Earth's Children by Jean Auel.

Did you get to your summer list? Here is a fun article that did on just that.

Recent Reads

88. Mastering Sketching
While I would not say that I mastered sketching, this book is chock-full on information, ideas and inspiration. Loved it.

89. Before I Go To Sleep
This debut novel is getting quite a bit of buzz and I really liked it. Imagine what it would be like if you woke up every morning and could not remember the past couple decades of your life. Not even what happened yesterday. We are our memories, are we not? It is what makes us who we are. Our anchor in this crazy thing we call life. Even though we know that memories are unreliable and get changed every time we access them, there is still this sense that we remember. And because we remember we know who we are. The book explores who we are when we do not remember our lives. Much to think about.

90. The Exquisite Book
A fun artistic collaboration. Love books with pages that fold out - gives me a sense of tactile play as well as a delightful feast for my eyes.

91. The Family Fang
Another novel that is getting a lot of buzz, so decided to check it out. Such a strange, tragic, funny, quirky story about a family. There are parts that had me laughing uncontrollably. An insightful look at how parents influence/damage their kids, and how everyone tries to survive the best way they know how. This is a hard book to describe, but give it a read. I certainly enjoyed my romp through the craziness that is Fang.

What are you reading right now?

September 2, 2011

Middle Sister

One of the fun things about traveling is stopping in local stores and finding gems like this.

Sampled a bottle. Pretty good. Cheers to all the middle sisters out there.