Saturday, September 30, 2006

Sunday Scribbling
prompt for 1 Oct., 2006

a brain-storming.......

Smooth,soft, sensitive
Skin of my teeth, skinned alive, skin tight
Skin crawls, shivers, sweats.
Skin a cat, pig skin, kid skin, calfskin.
Skin in varied colors and shades,
Is currency traded on certain streets in
Certain districts in every city.
Creamy chocolate, alabaster white,
Tawny, rosey, smooth, rough.
Responsive, supple, taut, loose.
Protects, conceals.
Hates to love the sun.
Skin sells---advertising!
Even to skinflints.
Exposed, vulnerable-
It wraps us in its protective coat,
shields us from the elements,
Invites attention.
A canvas for tattoo artists.

It's no skin off my back!

Friday, September 29, 2006

Lunch break, Montparnasse

The busy week has ended and now the busy weekend begins. There are too many choices and obligations.
Dinner tonight with Barb and Don. I'm sure we will finalize plans for the 54 mile endurance adventure sunday in celebration of Don's 54th birthday. We will climb St. Regis mountain (6 mile round trip). Once we are down, Don will roller blade to Santa Clare (20 miles). The rest of us ( 3 I think) will bicycle. Then after that Don will get on a bicycle (yes, he'll take the roller blades off first lol) and we will continue on for an additional 28 miles, ending in Potsdam. Probably will eat in a Mexican restaurant there in Potsdam (aye---Corona). Hmmm... Mexican food in a German named town in Northern NY on the Canadian border.

Saturday will entail finishing the move-out from camp and bringing two kayaks home and leaving 2 at Bonnie and Dicks in their new cellar ;-). Of course there will be the requisite cleaning to be done. Also there are the myriad of fall cleanup chores around home that can't possibly be accomplished in one or two days. :-(

The downstairs toilet needs a new flush valve, so I'll have to remember to stop at the hardware store in the morning and pick up those materials.

Sat. night we agreed to go to Barb and Dons for a spaghetti dinner (carb loading for the endurance event). We received a call from Bree saying that she and Amanda were planning a 35th wedding anniversary surprise party for Donna and Jeff for Sat.evening Not only are Donna and Jeff Long time friends, Jeff and I graduated H.S. together and he is the department head for anesthesia at work.

I was also supposed to travel south 3 hrs. for an anesthesia mtg this weekend.

Of course there is the event on sunday.

aye carumba... activities this weekend are coming fast and furious, like leaves being blown off the trees.

I'll need to go back to work monday to get a rest :-)

Thursday, September 28, 2006


Hold fast your dreams!
Within your heart
Keep one still, secret spot
Where dreams may go,
And, sheltered so,
May thrive and grow
Where doubt and fear are not.
O keep a place apart,
Within your heart,
For little dreams to go!

Think still of lovely things that are not true.
Let wishes and magic work at will in you.
Be sometimes blind to sorrow. Make believe!
Forget the calm that lies
In disillusioned eyes.
Though we all know that we must die,
Yet you and I
May walk like gods and be
Even now at home in immortality.

We see so many ugly things-
Deceits and wrongs and quarrelings;
We know, alas! we know
How quickly fade
The color in the west,
The bloom upon the flower,
The bloom upon the breast
And youth's blind hour.
Yet keep within your heart
A place apart
Where little dreams may go,
May thrive and grow.
Hold fast-hold fast your dreams!

Louise Driscoll

Monday, September 25, 2006

It was a rainy
o'ercast day, but we went to
the island castle

We sailed on the Morrisania, a restored, antique 1000 island tour boat, for the 1 1/2 hr. ride from Morristown, NY to Dark Island and Singer castle.

Although it was a dull, rainy day the river was calm and our spirits were lifted by the company of good friends and aquaintances.

We arrived dockside at Dark Island, exited our boat, and since we had pre-paid our tickets, met our guide, and climbed the wide bridal path which curved uphill from the dock to the main entrance.

From the entrance hall I could see two of my favorite rooms.

The Wine cellar.

And if you haven't guessed already;

The library.

To the left of the wine cellar is this staircase to the second floor.

The castle is honeycombed with secret passages, but of course now they are all blocked off by plexiglass partitions. One could access the second story by entering the secret passage in the wine cellar. I think the secret passages allowed the wait staff and servants to move between floors and rooms unobserved. However they may also have been used as listening posts from which to overhear businessmen's discussions.

This castle has been occupied since it was built and finished in 1905 at a cost of $500,000. It retains much of the original furnishings:

Ernest Flagg designed this castle after reading Sir Walter Scott's Woodstock. This is a fictional story about a castle located in Woodstock Park (Oxford, England).
Both castles have labyrinths, turrets, dungeons and secret passageways.

Frederick G. Bourne (1851-1919), one of the wealthiest men in America, commissioned Flagg to design a "hunting lodge."

The drawing room
The wood paneled drawing room (36 by 36 feet) is also known as the trophy room. It has a 20 ft. ceiling and a large pink-marble fireplace.

The drawing room also features (top photo of these two) three cozy alcoves with Pullman window seats along the exterior wall, with river views and enclosed draperies for privacy.


The twenty foot-foot square sunroom (also called the wicker room).

The perfect place to sit and enjoy the cross breezes on a hot summer day.

One of five guest bathrooms.

antique chess set


When first completed, the castle was called the Towers.


Bourne annexed abit of Canadian land by purchasing nearby Corn Island, lying a half mile away toward the north in Canadian waters. On this island a large portion of the castle's provisions were grown. There was also an other wine cellar, much larger than the one at the castle, located here on Corn Island, which came in mighty handy during prohibition.


The five story granite clock tower has winding stairs that rise to the self-regulating electric clockworks. The tower was built at the same time as the castle, but the fifth floor and clock were added later. One can enter the clock tower through a door and spiral staircase leading from the castle's kitchen area.


Sailing: two themes.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Sundays Scribblings: 24 Sept. 2006


A holy man was having a conversation with the Lord one day and

said, "Lord, I would like to know what Heaven and Hell are like. "

The Lord led the holy man to two doors. He opened one of the

doors and the holy man looked in. In the middle of the room was

a large round table. In the middle of the table was a large pot of

stew which smelled delicious and made the holy man's mouth

water. The people sitting around the table were thin and sickly.

They appeared to be famished. They were holding spoons with

very long handles that were strapped to their arms and each

found it possible to reach into the pot of stew and take a spoonful, but because the handle was longer than their arms, they could not

get the spoons back into their mouths.

The holy man shuddered at the sight of their misery and suffering.

The Lord said, "You have seen Hell." They went to the next room and

opened the door. It was exactly the same as the first one. There was

the large round table with the large pot of stew which made the holy

man's mouth water. The people were equipped with the same long-handled

spoons, but here the people were well nourished and plump, laughing and

talking. The holy man said, "I don't understand." " It is simple"

said the Lord, "it requires but one skill. You see, they have learned to

feed each other, while the greedy think only of themselves."

When Jesus died on the cross he was thinking of you!

-God determines who walks in your life, you determine who walks away,

who stays and who you refuse to let go.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Thursday, September 21, 2006

rel at The St. James Hotel, Cimarron, NM.

I was called in @ 0238 by Dr. B to administer an anesthetic to an 86 year old lady with a volvulous of her colon. He wanted to try to rectify the problem by doing a colonoscopy rather than open her abdomen. Of course, if the colonoscopy didn't work we would have to proceed with the laparotomy. The colonoscopy was successful!!! However it was 0400 by the time all was finished, not really enough time to return to bed. So I decided to utilize the office computer to catch up with the goings on with my blog friends, and make a post.

My day should be finished early (I do hope so) which will afford me the opportunity to start moving out of camp and back to the homestead.
Every year we vow to take less "things" to camp, and yet, by the end of the season we seem to have brought an excessive amount of "stuff" which now has to be returned home in one fell swoop rather than in the piece-meal fashion in which it was transported to the summer residence. Yikes! what a long sentence. that's me: either verbose or succinct, rarely in between.

A post from Flossy says she has run out of interesting things to say, and will probably be posting less in the future. Cripes, I feel that very little of what I write is of much interest to anyone... including me. I do it anyway, just to practice writing, and to make contact with people of a kindred spirit on a variety of subjects.
It's fun to make contact with folks you'll probably never meet, and to share a commonality and to reassure ourselves that in fact people the world over aren't all that different when you get right down to it. On the other hand it also provides us with an opportunity to see other view points. There are some very talented writers out there who I delight in reading.

Blogging is a way to relax (even in a rant,) feel calm and even distracted for a time. Putting thoughts down in print helps me to focus better on some things.

Who knows, maybe someday, when we return to Paris, we'll actually get to meet Paris Parfait and her husband and we can have a cafe, a croissant, stimulating conversation, and a stroll through some antique shops. One never knows does one? ;-)

For poetry Thursday: A poem be Robert Frost that expresses me.

A Time to Talk
by Robert Lee Frost

When a friend calls to me from the road
And slows his horse to a meaning walk,
I don't stand still and look around
On all the hills I haven't hoed,
And shout from where I am, 'What is it?'
No, not as there is a time talk.
I thrust my hoe in the mellow ground,
Blade-end up and five feet tall,
And plod: I go up to the stone wall
For a friendly visit.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

19 Sept., 2006. A fine day it is to be sure. The rain came all morning as a fine, but steady mist. 'Twas as if god was givin' us a washin'. With the temperatures in the high 50's and the misty rain it felt exhilarating to get out and go to work.

I came home early because I'm going to drive D. to the eye doctor, and she will have her eyes dilated and won't be able to drive safely afterwards.

For unknown reasons my laptop computer is behaving for the moment so I've decided to try a post. My new laptop has been ordered and should be ready for pick-up Thursday or Friday at the latest. In the mean time I've been able to catch up on some reading. I prefer to read from the print on paper technology, since that is what I grew up with. If I find something on line to read that is of any length, I print it out because I find it too difficult to read from the computer screen except in short bursts. The same principal applies to my writing. I make many fewer mistakes both spelling and grammer wise when I put pencil on paper rather than typing on the computer. So, all in all, this little break has been like a gentle breeze of fresh air.
23 September (1945-2006)

Happy Birthday rel

The first day of autumn 2006

Pictures above show rel at ages 3,17 (H.S. grad.),24 (nursing school grad) and 59.

For my 12th birthday in 1957 I received a sister, Julie.
Happy Birthday Jule!

Thank you to all my blogger friends for stopping by this week with encouraging comments, and birthday wishes.

Today we are going to take a boat trip to Singer Castle on Dark Island
Click on the links above and come along, we'd love to have you!

The weather forecast calls for a high of 68 degrees F. with an 80% chance of steady rain in the morning.
What better way to spend a rainy fall day than in a haunted castle.

If you decide to join us, the mode by which we'll travel is here.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Bercy, France

My Laptop's screen is on the fritz. From time to time over the last week it has been acting up. It gets the heebee-jeebees and the whim-whams, making it impossible to read or to post. At this current moment only the lower third of the screen is affected but for the past two days 3/4 of the screen has been squiggly (he says with furrowed brow.)
I will be able to do some limited posting from work. Until I can find and purchase a new laptop I'll be catching up on my reading and writing. Ah, that would be eyes on paper and pencil on paper. (Heresy, I know ;-))
Currently reading: Gladys Taber's Stillmeadow SEASONS.

Maybe I'll have a new computer on the first day of autumn, which also happens to be my birthday ;-)

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Poetry Thursday

The Man He Killed

Thomas Hardy (1840-1928)

Had he and I but met
By some old ancient inn,
We should have sat us down to wet
Right many a nipperkin!

But ranged as infantry,
And staring face to face,
I shot at him and he at me,
And killed him in his place.

I shot him dead because-
Because he was my foe,
Just so: my foe of course he was;
That's clear enough; Although

He thought he'd 'list, perhaps,
Off-hand like - just as I -
Was out of work - had sold his traps -
No other reason why.

Yes; quaint and curious war is!
You shoot a fellow down
You'd treat if met where any bar is,
Or help to half-a-crown.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

A view of Long Lake from our cabin.

The only opportunity for photos were from the beach prior to a day's paddle. If we were out for a leisurely paddle, the photo ops were picturesque to say the least. This weekend we were racing (not to win,but to finish). There were check points along the route, and if a boat had not reached a check point by a cut off time they would be taken off the water. Therefore, we paddled continuosly for 6-8 hours each day except for the portages. In fact, I didn't bring my camera on the paddles knowing that I'd not have an opportunity to take any photos.

A war canoe finishing at Blue Mountain Lake.

We were unable to compete in the first days paddle for 2 reasons. The canoe we had ordered a month earlier did not arrive. We borrowed a canoe and paddles from the local outfitter from whom we had ordered the new canoe. The first day was Friday and start time was 0800 which was impossible for both of us to accomadate. We started Saturday morning on Long Lake.

They're off!

Long Lake is 10 miles in length. Last year in kayaks, we rowed into a stiff wind and were barely able to sustain a 3 mile per hr. pace. This year in the canoe, the wind was behind us and we averaged 5 mph. We were suprised at how soon we arrived at the mouth of the Racquette River.

We started at 0800 and finished at 1600. the distance for the day was 33 miles. The 1.25 mile portage was much easier with the canoe than it was last year with the kayaks.

Day 3,(2 for us) putting in at the narrows of Fish Creek Pond.

Day three distance is 22 miles with 3 carries (0.6 miles.) We paddle across upper, middle and lower Saranac lakes and finish in Lake Fowler at riverside Park in the Village of Saranac Lake.

It was a challenging but satisfying weekend. We are already making plans for next year.

A scrumptious meal to end a perfect weekend.

Monday, September 11, 2006

rel & glh preparing to enter Long Lake.

We are home unscathed, sore, and exhuberant. The weekend excursion was as fulfilling as we had anticipated. We got home around 1830 last evening. D. went home to feed and talk to the cats while I stayed at camp and unpacked. It was an early to bed night since we were fatigued physically and today is a full work day.

Last year we did the "Classic" in our kayaks. This year we used a canoe (borrowed because the one we ordered did not arrive in time.) and it was, for me, the first time ever in a canoe and L. has only a few hours in a canoe. We did amazingly well. Of course, when one uses their muscles differently (canoe vs kayak), regardless of conditioning, the muscles complain at the end of the day. ;-)

To the shower then work. More pics and story to, stay tuned.

Friday, September 08, 2006

My mom was born in Indiana on 7 sept. 1919. She died in Nov of 2000. She'd have been 87 yesterday had she been alive.

This Poem by James Whitcome Riley is for her.
Happy Birthday ma.


When Autumn shakes the
It's a long sweet way across the orchard!---
The bird sings low as the bumblebee---
It's a long, sweet way across the or-
The poor shote-pig he says, says he:
"When Autumn shakes the rambo-
There's enough for you and enough
for me."---
It's a long, sweet way across the orchard

For just two truant lads like we,
When Autumn shakes the rambo-tree
There's enough for you and enough
for me---
It's a long, sweet way across the or-

When Autumn shakes the rambo-
It's a long, sweet way across the or-
The mole digs out to peep and see---
It's a long, sweet way across the or-
The dusk sags down, and the moon
swings free,
There's a far, lorn call, "Pig-gee
And two boys--glad enough for
It's a long, sweet way across the or-

For just two truant lads like we,
When Autumn shakes the rambo-tree
There's enough for you and enough
for me---
It's a long, sweet way across the or-

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Leaving Fri. 8 Sept '06 for a long weekend. L.H. and I are going to participate in the Adirondak 90 mile canoe classic from Old Forge to Saranac Lake in the Adirondak mountains of New York. D.L. and K.H. will be our "pit crew" picking us up at the take outs everyday. It's a 3 day event, which consists, approximately, of a 30 mile paddle each day.
Last year we did itin individual kayaks. This year we are using a 2 man racing canoe. There is a good story with this switch to a conoe. However right now we haven't received the canoe so the tale is incomplete at this time. Stay tuned........

No blogging until monday morning.
You all have a safe and enjoyable weekend!
Poetry Thursday

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

6 September 2006

The Trek: 26 July, 2006 To the peak of Baldy Mountain

Leavng Miranda at first light, sans packs, we follow the creek bed through thick forest up toward Black Horse Camp. Although steep, the damp, cool, shaded climb early in the morning when we were fresh, was actually rather pleasant. We passed by a number of dilapadated remainders of the old mining industry of this area. Breakfast at Blackhorse camp, pee break and then switchbacks up to the base of Baldy. We stopped frequently for breath catching breaks and to drink in the beauty of incredible mountain vistas.

Stopping often and drinking mega amounts of water served us well in our steady ascent. FR, however, was begining to show show signs of extreme fatigue and air hunger. Everyone else seemed to be in good shape, and we continued to stop for photo ops. ;-)

L & K, the pause that refreshes!

C'est moi avec KH & MS.

At this point, we are at about 11,200 ft of elevation. It becomes evident that FR will have to descend due to extreme labored breathing and headache. FR has made this trek to the top 4 times in the past, so while disappointing, it's not as if this was his first trip up Baldy.

I snapped some tree line flora shots just before making the final ascent.

The ascent is now not only steep, but scree covered. For each two steps forward you slip back one. :-(

At this point everyone has reached the summit except K., K. and myself. Big K. says, " I don't think I can make it!" I said, looking back down the slope, "the top is closer, so..." I described for her how I was modifying Jeff Galloway's "run-walk" technique that I had used last Oct. When I ran the Marine Corps Marathon In Washington D.C.. I walk a minute and then rest a minute (by the clock), walk a minute, rest a minute. She agrees to try it and we tortise crawl up the mountain.

Thank you Jeff Galloway!!!!!!! We all make the summit (except FR. Who by the way, was down in Baldy camp drinking saspirilla and eating chocolate ;-) )
Me and L. on top!

NEXT: Coming down the other side of Baldy Mountain.