Today is Olive’s last day at the beach this year. The weather is incredible and she has been so happy being in the water almost every day.
We bought her this green flying saucer type thing which really soars on a windy day. She swims out to get it and then comes right back.
Except yesterday when Cris was playing with her. Olive paddled out to the saucer and then started to swim out a bit farther into the ocean. Cris couldn’t figure out what was going on, and then spotted dolphin fins. Olive must have sensed them as well. It is hard to know what kind of interaction there would have been if she hadn’t come right back when called. You would like to think that it would have ended in a nice “Flipper-like” scenario with lots of cavorting and intra-mammal bonding, but you never know.
Thanks to Bob and Kath for having us in the house again this year, and it is so great that they have been here for the latter part of our stay. Heading back North tomorrow.
Due to the great generosity of my brother and sister in law, we are back at the beach for a bit. Olive is thrilled.
Happy New Year to you all.
I haven’t posted much of the Olive lately. She has developed into a really good ball dog, and has a particularly interesting way of keeping it on the side of her mouth. She is really a good girl and a wonderful companion.
The past few days have provided what might be the last warmth before the autumn ends. Olive and I had a nice walk in the woods yesterday.
There wasn’t any water for her to mess about in, but she seems to enjoy rooting around in the leaves looking for mushrooms.
I never remember what this plant is called, but there are tons of them livening up the forrest floor.
The Amherst Farmer’s Market was quite busy today. This is turmeric, and I don’t ever recall seeing it fresh like this. I didn’t buy any, but did get some amazing fresh ginger that will go in the freezer.
Olive loves to go shopping with us and is so well behaved in town. She has been a great comfort to us in the past couple of weeks. The world has felt a bit topsy-turvy of late.
…is a phrase my dear friend Alex Ross coined many years ago. I think I have mentioned it here before. We use it as a general catch-all to cover anything from mild creative block to what the Germans call Weltschmerz. I have been somewhere in it for a while now. I haven’t been posting much, but I have been shooting quite a bit and I wanted to put up a few shots here. / I was chastised by a Kathmandu policeman just after I shot this ↑. The white kiosk in the middle of the intersection was put there this very day. The old one was lying on its side on the corner beside me (and is quite possibly still there).
I’ve been in and out of the New Haven train station a lot lately and have always liked these tunnels.
Our friends Scott and Lisa very generously invite us to visit them on Block Island for a few days in July. This was the view from their rental. We had a lovely time.
Olive is now just over 2 years old and is the most wonderful dog. My pal Peter Carroll took this picture.
These two big stones are in the empty lot next to the house on Ensenada Drive in Woodland Hills, CA where Captain Beefheart and his Magic Band recorded “Trout Mask Replica”. I was going to take a photo of the house, but it is a private residence now and I didn’t want to bother the current occupants. I had a friend in college by the name of Greg Trout whose granny gave him a copy of the album for his birthday. The only reason she bought it for him was that his surname was in the title. When I first heard it, it seemed beyond unlistenable. Now it is one of my most favorite records. Beefheart was a genius. Click on this only if you are open to weirdness.
My brother-in law John is also a huge Beefheart fan. He was up for the excursion to Woodland Hills especially if it involved a stop at Musso and Frank is Hollywood. John is totally amazing and so much fun to be with. He was raised in Southern California and his knowledge of the area is staggering.
He grew up in Palos Verdes and gave us a tour on a lovely Sunday morning. This is a detail of a fountain that is in the center of town.
Here is John and Lynne’s dog Scooter. He is a mischievous sweetie.
Cris and I always go to Huntington Beach when we are in California. The summer program for future lifeguards was happening as we were there. There was a wide range of ages of the kids, and it was way cool to see all of the participants in their red suits and colorful caps.
The older kids paddled out beyone the end of the pier and back. It looked exhausting.
The US Open of Surfing was happening the same day and the pier was jammed with people.
We also usually make it out to the Huntington Library in Pasadena,
mostly just for the chance to see Gainsborough’s Blue Boy. It never gets old.
Peter was visiting from DC last week, and we made our annual trip to Essex to eat fried clams at Farnham’s. It was a beautiful day and the view from the picnic tables can not be beat.
Thanks for following and for giving me the opportunity to unclog some of that karma congestion. I think it worked. Cheers.
UPDATE. This is indicative of how spaced out I am, but the picture of Olive was taken by Peter Carroll. It is the best photograph of her ever, and he totally deserves the credit. Sorry Pete!
We had a lovely walk in the woods this morning. The trees are just starting to show new growth, and I was pleased to see that some of these water plants (identification anyone?) are starting to appear in the small streams. This one is right near a spot where Olive likes to lie in the water and rub her back on the moss covered rocks.
This is from a few days ago. It might be time for a bath.
Now that the snow is all gone Olive and I have started spending more time in the woods. It rained most of the day yesterday, so it was pretty wet. Nice.
She is a total stick (or should I say log) girl. This could have been record size for her. She carried it for about half a mile.
I have been seeing a lot of green lately, and these fungi are just beautiful. Can anyone out there tell me what they are?
I think I post a version of this photograph more than I probably should. We have had a ton of rain in the past few days, and Olive and I had a lovely wet walk in the woods this afternoon. But for some reason, the water, the leaves, and the dog make me feel quite happy and I wanted to share it.
When Judy Berde and I were making arrangements for my talk on Roosevelt Island, I got an email from her asking if I had a dog. The question came out of nowhere, but I told her about Olive. When I finished my talk she presented me with a box with this amazing gift inside. Olive now has a new bowl, and she loves it! (Well, it has food in it and she is a Labrador; what’s not to like?) I think these bowls are for sale through the Roosevelt Island Historical Society, as well as mugs with the same text. Any of you who live in the metro New York area should think about joining the organization; Judy does a great job and the island has a really interesting history.
Olive is also now rocking a new Red Sox collar, which is a gift from my sister Karen. Thanks Sis.
I have just created a direct link to all of the suitcase posts for those of you who have very little interest in my dog, or the other bits of my life that I like to post here. If you look to the column on the right →, under “Pages” you will see a link to “All Willard Suitcase Posts”. I hope that it makes it easier for folks who are looking for all the suitcases in one place. I will still upload all suitcase stuff to this site.
We are in South Carolina for a bit and seeing tons of interesting wildlife. This bobcat was just hanging around on the deck yesterday.
And this little lizard was on one of the dining room chairs.
Olive has been swimming every day, and it doesn’t take much to get her to nap between dips.
Happy New Year’s everyone, thanks for following, and be well. Cheers, Jon