i really and truly thought it was tuesday, and was about to post this only to realise i’m less than an hour away from thursday…well, who cares anyway
a couple months ago i loaded my new computer with contents of an old hard drive back up, including music, and found beautiful stuff i’d forgotten about (how does that even happen) and now i’m swooning again to califone
one of my favourite concerts of all time was seeing califone with iron & wine in san diego, 2007. oh goodness. i was in heaven.
on a whim, i picked up the jacques cousteau classic the silent world. although he was a native french speaker, he wrote the book in english, and i was shocked at how similar his prose is to the (translated) works i’ve read by antione de sainte-exupery, wind, sand and stars in particular. the story of cousteau and his team, exploring the oceans as the first ‘menfish’ is so captivating; i had never before considered those early days of sea exploration and how little we truly knew about the world beneath the waves.
although cousteau later gained the reputation of a conservationist, in seems many of his undersea experiments involve harming animals out of curiosity. will the shark die if you harpoon its head? why not just harpoon this whale and see how long it takes to die? oh, you’ve discovered a colony of monk seals, a species thought to be extinct for 300 years, so why not kidnap (his own words) a juvenile and raise it for a couple months until you realise how vast its appetite, and then release it to a zoo? although some of the things his team did, such as dissecting manta rays, led to greater scientific understanding of the species, many of the incidents served to highlight the difference in attitudes toward animals then and now.
anyway, that didn’t hamper my enjoyment of the book–i adored it and wished there was more to it, but that’s always the way with a good book.
One Sunday morning in 1936 at Le Mourillon, near Toulon, I waded into the Mediterranean and looked into it through Fernez goggles. I was a regular Navy gunner, a good swimmer interested only in perfecting my crawl style. The sea was merely a salty obstacle that burned my eyes. I was astounded by what I saw in the shallow single at Le Mourillon, rocks covered with green, brown and silver forests of algae and fishes unknown to me, swimming in crystalline water. Standing up to breathe I saw a trolley car, people, electric-light poles. I put my eyes under again and civilization vanished with one last bow. I was in a jungle never seen by those who floated on the opaque roof.
Sometimes we are lucky enough to know that our lives have been changed, to discard the old, embrace the new, and run headlong down an immutable course. It happened to me at Le Mourillon on that summer’s day, when my eyes were opened on the sea.
back to the swoony days of my late teens. i’ve always been prone to romanticism, and over nothing more than music. the best songs hit me right in the solar plexus and make me happy and sad and bittersweet and twisting achy inside. i love the tension in this song. it feels that beautiful space before a first kiss: after you know that you want to very much indeed but before you actually touch. that feeling, pre-kiss tension, is the best but also the worst when it stretches out for hours and this is what the song reminds me of.
it’s wonderful for the added touch of mystery, like the last scene in lost in translation, such a tease because i want to know what was said.
YES IT’S BACK
okay, this is the best and i was feeling a little blue the past couple days but then i realised – what’s better than feeling down? realising i have two cuddle love machines purring up a storm right there as i wake up, oh yes. yesterday i was sleeping on my side when i woke up, and pepin was curled against me with the top of his head under my chin. if that isn’t cozy and adorable, i don’t know what is. today i was feeling a little grumpy because it’s a holiday and i would love to sleep in but i work in a stupid flower shop and this week is stupid valentine’s week and i fucking hate that god damn day and i have to work on it and see all this lovey shit and ugh ugh ug
but when i woke up, pepin was cuddled up near my face and henry was purring at me an arm’s length away so i just laid in bed a bit and let the nasty feelings be washed away by these sweet little animals.
i learned the lovely meaning of a word i already knew: columbine. like feline, canine, serpentine, and vulpine, it describes something as animal-like. the animal:
mourning dove, one of my favourites because of their song
WHAT A SURPRISE, someone with an etsy shop called dove grey dawn would swoon over a word meaning ‘dovelike’? UNBELIEVABLE. but really, roll columbine off your tongue a few times and try to tell me it isn’t lyrical. no cellar door or bell jar, maybe, but lovely nonetheless.
this is definitely turning into a run of Music I Forgot I Liked. or maybe i should think of a musical-nostalgia pun. um….well, it’s 7 am and i’m writing this as a quick little entry before i head out to job #2, so for now i’m going to leave the pun status at “disappunting” (see what i did there?).
HOW ABOUT DOVES, AMIRITE? some cities is so swoony. plus it’s in the right vocal range for me that i can sing along and feel all awesome, because i don’t know about that thing “harmonizing” etc.
also what the heck, for the past ten years i thought they were from montreal and now google says that they are from the uk instead. subtle canadian pride deflated!
enough rambling: i need to put my clothes on and go! check it outttt
it’s happy thanksgiving up here in canadia, and i’m just about to go have supper at courtney’s with george and michael (so excited) but before i go, here’s what i’m thankful for today.
– living in this beautiful, safe city, in one of the best countries in the world. and i have a cute little apartment and am so grateful to have a roof over my head.
– my incredible friends, who are my chosen family. they bring so much awesome to my life.
– my actual family, who sometimes drive me crazy but are decent folks.
– my cats, cuddling me every day and making sure i never feel unloved.
– my strong, healthy body. it enables me to do all the ridiculous and wonderful stuff i want to do.
– THE INTERNET for bringing me wonderful new people and keeping my far-away loved ones a little bit closer.
– pencil skirts, cause they are so sexy.
– my creative job, even though it’s not giving me as many hours as i’d hoped, i’m still lucky to be working in a nontraditional field.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME LET’S LISTEN TO HAPPY MUSIC
i grew up watching the perseids every summer. my mom would let us stay up late and it didn’t matter where we were (at home on the farm, camping, etc) but my brother and i would lay and gaze at the sky with her.
things happen, we grew up, and old family traditions kind of fell away. for many years, i’ve lived in large cities, and it’s hard to see astronomical events when the sky is full of light pollution. while i was living in san diego, i attempted to watch the perseids but it was never successful. the sky was always cloudy.
this past weekend, i got an incredible double-dose of perseids that totally satisfied the years-long gap. first, on friday night, i was out in the country, watching them from my friend’s front yard . lots of trees (and a mountain!) cutting into the horizon and reducing what we could see, but it was still a beautiful show. it was so dark we could see the milky way. i have not seen stars so bright in months. in many respects, this was very similar to the experiences i had as a child, quietly laying on the grass in a rural area, no streetlights cutting into my star-sight, just waiting for stars to burn across the sky.
the next night was mal’s birthday party. a group of us piled onto her sundeck, watched a movie (baz lurmann’s romeo + juliet! swooooon) and then watched the sky. it felt so good to be close to a bunch of people i really like & sharing this experience that made me feel so warm and fuzzy in this way that only comes from reflections of positive things from one’s childhood. like, maybe little arinn would be so pleased that big arinn still watches the sky, and has friends who also think it’s a worthwhile and incredible thing to do. it was a really lovely counterpoint to the night before–even though we were in the city & the sky was crowded with unwanted lights, quite a few meteors were still visible and it was so fun to be experiencing the wonder of the event with a bunch of people i am fond of.
when i was quite young, maybe ten or eleven, i came across the myth of tam lin. for my whole life, i’ve been really into fairytales and folklore, and the story of tam lin has stuck with me so strongly. the imagery is vibrant! a woman holding her love, while he shapeshifts into one horrible form after another, and if she doesn’t let go of him he will be rescued from the queen of the fairies. i’d really love to turn this into a fabric painting, but they take sooo long. it may still happen, but for now–i did this in watercolour pencils the other day. it’s been a long time since i’ve worked on something like this and i’m pleased with how it turned out.