Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Bluper moon?

By now most people probably know that the second full moon occurring in the same month gets called a blue moon.

This one was even more than that, as it was one of those occurrences when the moon is close enough to the earth to earn the title 'supermoon'.

And then, to make things even crazier, there was a lunar eclipse at 5:26 am, which led to last night's/this morning's moon to qualify as a super blue blood moon. Impressive titling, to be sure. Makes me think of British uppah-classes or worse, that hateful little rich boy in Monty

I was too lazy to get up at 5, so I didn't get to see the eclipse or the moon turning red. Still, I was pretty happy to get this shot of the just about perfectly full moon last night -- probably just before the clouds took over the sky.

Monday, January 29, 2018

A wee bit late

I suppose any die-hard traditionalist would find it terrible to be observing Robert Burns' birthday this late in the month. But it turns out this was just the first day we could manage.

Even as we bump along in our non-traditional ways, we try to keeping a few of the 'auld' rituals. One of these is celebrating with a homely version of the Burns Night Supper that isn't exactly what true Scots might be serving.

At least the centrepiece of the meal was the traditional haggis, a food that is apparently illegal in the US.

I admit to cheating, and to buying this haggis from our local butcher shop -- and I even admit to quite liking it, though I probably wouldn't want it all the time.

As for the accompaniments, they weren't exactly what they were supposed to be, but made up from ingredients that were in the fridge, the pantry, or the garden.

The pantry and fridge elements lent themselves to the "MacRoni" and cheese -- made with a nicely respectful Cheddar (aged) at that. And the other side dish wasn't exactly 'neeps and tatties' (turnips and potatoes), but a pretty good facsimile with freshly-dug Jerusalem artichoke, one of the items remaining in the kitchen garden.

Burns Night celebrates the life of a poet, so I probably need to cite a few lines of his that befit the occasion:
Some hae meat and canna eat And some would eat that want it. But we have meat, and we can eat. Sae let the Lord be thankit. 
To that, I can only add an after-dinner Amen.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Finders keepers

I'm pretty sure it was Stephen King who impressed me with his recommendation to read Dickens. He may have even said he often re-reads particular books by Dickens, including the tome of tomes, Bleak House. It isn't one I've ever tried.

Great Expectations was a novel we were expected to read in high school. Memorable in its own ways (at least parts of it linger in memory), it wasn't enough to push me into wanting to read the rest of the Dickens library.

But today (not rainy, hurrah!) might mean that I have to screw up my courage (and clear my calendar?) to take a run at this 1,000+ pages classic. As I entered a building where I had an appointment, there it was, standing near these mossy bricks, extending an invitation to me. For someone who's a believer in 'signs' it's hard to ignore this new addition to my bookshelves (especially where it takes up what seems like more than its fair share).

I'm not ready to start it yet, though I am sure over the course of the year, it will beckon me. When (if?) I manage it, I'll let you know.

Gosh though, if only the title wasn't so grimly discouraging.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

A new leaf?

Yikes, we're already into the double digits of January in what I'm still thinking of as a new year. And what a new year it is turning out to be!

I'm still trying to get used to the sound of it: 2018 -- a number I am sure I once believed would mean flying cars. Too bad about those, especially when you consider the traffic congestion we contend with.

But not everything is as bad (or getting worse) as traffic congestion.

Anyone who doubts that some things aren't getting better didn't see Sunday night's Golden Globe Awards, where so many people spoke out on behalf of change. And oh my, there was Oprah, putting a president to shame with her eloquence.

A new leaf? Let's hope so. It's time.