France & the Dordogne-September 14-28, 2012



a little bit of Eden


From outdoorswoman to shut-in!! I am a hostage to painters and sheet-rockers. The garden’s watering system has been shut off, and I worry that all the hard work of creating a vegetable garden will dry up.

Words for the day: “NOTHING TASTES AS GOOD AS THIN FEELS.” I am blob-like, short of breath, and this circular cycle of discomfort and disability is keeping me in this stasis? Just don’t feel well.

gone but not forgotten


Back to the Leaf!!! As the saying goes, “so much has changed yet remains the same!!” The lake view to the north, remains private, serene and picturesque with Stanford Camp on one side, and houses built all along the southern shore; access to challenging and spectacular hiking trails, are right out the back door, and yet, the developments have gotten bigger, less cabiny in feel, and the small store where josh and charles used to charge their popsicles, has become a two storied building with decks, that serve meals and coffee.

phil and i walked down the hill our first morning, and heard the whirring of wings as two large blue grouse were flushed from the pines, by the noise and disturbance of a tree trimmer. we marveled at their beauty, and our good fortune in having seen them so closely. later, while having our brunch on Isabelle’s deck, one crashed into her high picture window, and broke it’s neck. I picked up its warm limp body and felt its bulk as I tried to revive it. About 15 minutes later, we felt the impact of another strike, as a second bird, its mate, took almost directly the same path, and landed with blood oozing from its beak, tail fluttering in distress for about a minute before it too, stopped breathing. Trauma and immense sadness.

wonderful walks with my honey over the last couple of days


finally notching that small triumph over my own natural tendency toward inactivity….I’m out walking again!

and some shutter therapy was another added incentive. trying something different seems to boost my enthusiasm, happiness and sense of well-being. so difficult to take the first step, despite the potential benefits, but so great to have my partner along with me.


june 27th, 2012


day/week without a connection.

saw NIXON IN CHINA last night, by John Adams. set design was quite spectacular, but the music droned on and on. ¬†mary and larry pitts attended and also, sue ellen who was visiting from Indianapolis…miss her.midsommer pole

flowers still look semi fresh after three days of dying on the vine so to speak. Alf has a bad stomach again, and I continue to worry as to whether he is in pain. Slow day, spent home taking care of rust repairs. Made some ginger icecream for Ikram and Karim for tonight.



Had a Midsummer’s Eve Party here last night…Spent a week preparing down to every last detail. Phil was incredibly kind and helpful as usual, helping build and decorate a wooden pole which ended up looking like a cross in our backyard. I had asked the florists what they do with the remaining flowers left over on Saturday, as they are closed Sunday? they bundled me out the door with bouquets of beautiful white long stem roses, and star gazer lilies…more than I could ever use. The Maypole is dripping with them. The party is over and Today, I feel empty…need to talk to my inner coach, and find a little self love.

Alf was pretty perky during the party, and just as I had predicted, Pat suggested we put in an elevator for him. It is getting more and more difficult for him to manage the stairs. Uncomplaining as he is, it is painful to watch him deteriorate, and yet…

Father’s Day continued


One thing’s for sure, Alf still knows how to charm…He gets petted, kissed, stroked and talked to…and he returns the affection with licks, and nose butts. I broke down at Ocean Beach today, when Phil and I went to look at the sunset.

Alf would tremble with excitement blocks before we ever arrived, and would run from one end to the other, disregarding our presence. Unfortunately, walking on the sand is a bit too strenuous for his arthritis these days, but this is a place that is filled with memories of him, and I have difficulty being there without thinking of his joy and how compromised and old he is now..