Sunday, August 31, 2008
I'm reminded of the song "Camelot" from the movie of the same name: "A law was made a distant moon ago here - July and August cannot be too hot. By order summer lingers through September, in Camelot."
And: "The rain may never fall 'til after sundown, by 8 the morning fog must disappear. In short there's simply not, a more congenial spot, for happily-ever-aftering than here in Camelot." Once the three weeks of constant rain ended in mid-June, it's been oh-so pleasant.
Here in Bismarck, it never once reached 100 degrees, much less topped it. That's unusual for the Northern Great Plains. I myself have seen it get to 113 degrees. Even on days when it reached the 90s, the evenings cooled down most comfortably. When it did rain, it usually was at night, just like in Camelot.
The tornado sirens only went off once all summer. Unusual? - you bet! We only had one rip-roaring thunder, lightning and wind storm. Unusual? - uh huh! We had no hail at all. Unusual? - absolutely. We never once turned on our air conditioner. Unu--oh, am I wearing out that word?
Here are some substitutes: It was a summer of spring zephyr breezes. It was moderate, balmy, temperate, blissful, languorous. Even the West-Nile-virus-carrying culex tarsalis mosquito went away somewhere. The c.t.s represented only 4% of mosquitoes found in traps, and the reported cases of West Nile were down by 4/5ths from last year.
This summer also reminded me of what I have read about the weather in England the summer of 1914, "The hot, sun-drenched gorgeous summer of 1914; the most beautiful in living memory. It was remembered as a kind of Eden." Writer Stefan Zweig remembers that he "had rarely experienced a summer more luxurious, more beautiful and, I am happy to say, more summery."
A summery summer. Yes, that's what we've had here. The essence of all summers, with all of the good and little of the bad. I savored every day of this summer, from early in the cool mornings to late into the evenings.
But we remember what happened in both Camelots - ancient and modern. And at the end of the summer of 1914, the guns of August began booming, signaling the start of the Great War. I certainly hope that the summer of 2008 does not portend anything bad coming in the fall!
NOTE ADDED LATER: I have deleted an ending sentence in this post, and any comments referring to that sentence will not be shown.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
I haven't been watching the Olympics this summer. All I did was follow the exploits of Michael Phelps. Yeah, Michael!
I did catch a segment of one of his races in which he was doing a "stroke" that involved holding his arms back by his sides, keeping his legs and feet together and undulating his body like a fish to propel him through the water. Like a fish, I tell you!!
I was astounded. Michael Phelps, I thought, is a flippin' merman!
Then, a few days later I was browsing the web and found out that he is for sure a merman. Famed photographer Annie Leibovitz must have seen him do the same swim move that I did, because she picked him to be in her "The Little Mermaid" shoot for a series she is doing for Vanity Fair called "Disney Dream Portrait Series". (PS - Julianne Moore is Ariel.)
Look at them in the photo above. Yes, it's a photo, not a painting, and they are accompanied by other well-known swimmers in the background.
Here's what the article said, in part: "Fitted in his silvery fishtail, Phelps was lowered into a backlot tank in Los Angeles used for underwater movie scenes. Leibovitz was on the outside, snapping away, communicating her instructions to Phelps via members of her crew.
"One of the most complicated shots I have ever done," said Leibovitz. "I didn't know if it was going to work, what to expect. I have to tell you, he was beautiful. Michael put on that tail and ... he just became like a modern dancer. He just took to it and enjoyed himself and swam through this tank. I was blown away."
She adds, "His movements were so graceful and beautiful you just felt like you were watching a real merman."
Saturday, August 16, 2008
I saw the movie this afternoon and highly recommend it. I haven't had so much fun at a movie since "The Wedding Crashers."
Oh, it's gonna make you feel like dancin'! So what if Pierce Brosnan can't sing. He doesn't sing that much, and it's wonderful to watch his face as he sings to his long-lost love.
Sunday, August 10, 2008
I have been a busy girl this summer, making pages for an altered book round robin that I'm participating in. I always do double pages.
I think you can click on the pictures to enlarge them. If not, the words below "Reflections on Claire" say: "She loves the beach....in winter"; "Names her dogs after ex-boyfriends"; "She's been down the Nile and up the Mississippi"; and "Even my mother likes her."
I've had the clipping of the woman and the quotes for ages, but only recently though of putting them together. I like this spunky woman.