Saturday, August 27, 2011

Storm Warnings

One of my favorite poems of all time, I read "Storm Warnings" for the first time in 11th grade.  I remembered it for years, but couldn't find it again until I wrote to my high school English teacher while I was still in college asking for the writer.  Since then, I read it once every few months.  (The re-reading is, I think, one of the things I love most about poetry.)  Earlier this week, all I wanted was to read bog poems, but as soon as all this craziness with Hurricane Irene began, I immediately thought of "Storm Warnings." 

It's a lovely piece, so I thought I'd share it with you now, to help you weather this storm.  (We're not being evacuated, and in fact, our part of the city should be safe no matter what level hurricane we face, but we're still at the grocery store downloading some good e-books and buying candles and bread.)

Storm Warnings

The glass has been falling all the afternoon,
And knowing better than the instrument
What winds are walking overhead, what zone
Of grey unrest is moving across the land,
I leave the book upon a pillowed chair
And walk from window to closed window, watching
Boughs strain against the sky

And think again, as often when the air
Moves inward toward a silent core of waiting,
How with a single purpose time has traveled
By secret currents of the undiscerned
Into this polar realm. Weather abroad
And weather in the heart alike come on
Regardless of prediction.

Between foreseeing and averting change
Lies all the mastery of elements
Which clocks and weatherglasses cannot alter.
Time in the hand is not control of time,
Nor shattered fragments of an instrument
A proof against the wind; the wind will rise,
We can only close the shutters.

I draw the curtains as the sky goes black
And set a match to candles sheathed in glass
Against the keyhole draught, the insistent whine
Of weather through the unsealed aperture.
This is our sole defense against the season;
These are the things we have learned to do
Who live in troubled regions.
          -Adrienne Rich

Friday, August 19, 2011

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Moving On Up

We're moving!* You probably already knew that, but just in case you didn't, and you were wondering whether I was ever coming back to this blog or twitter or email or anything else I'm behind on, I am, but it may not be too soon.  We move in on Saturday, and until then I'll be waist deep in boxes and after that, I may not have internet.  So, I'll be back with pictures of our gorgeous new place soon, but until then, I leave you with this image of my wonderful, cuddly, adorable packing buddy, who sadly won't be able to move with us.

*For the curious, we're moving to a fancy part of Harlem.  It's a dream.  A beautiful, newly renovated apartment with wood floors and tons of light; in our price range; 30 minutes from work and school for both of us; AND in a super-cute neighborhood with lots of restaurants, a farmer's market, and several friends. It's the perfect place for us to start out this real-life-together thing, and I could not be happier!

Friday, August 5, 2011

{This Moment}

{This Moment}

A Friday ritual inspired by Amanda Soule & many others.
Please feel free to share a link to your own moment in the comments.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Worlds of Wonder: Grand Central Station

What is there to say about Grand Central Station that hasn't already been worn out by a million sayings? I read a short story once where a man wanders around the station, and eventually gets lost in one of its many tunnels, finding himself in the past.  No one accepts his money, but he loves being there, and writes a letter to his wife via his antique post-card collection and tells her he won't be coming home, ever.  That's how  much people love GC. You get lost there, and then you decide being lost there is better than being home.

Although I'm tired beyond belief of the MetroNorth Railroad, and am looking forward to a much shorter commute in the coming weeks, I'm a bit sorry I won't have an excuse to stand in GC with my neck craned, staring at those incredible ceiling paintings.  Still, I am looking forward to passing through for weekend trips home, for the Christmas market there this holiday season, and for the day, perhaps one day in the distant future, when someone offers to bring me to the Campbell Apartment for a drink and then whispers sweet nothings to me over the archways at the Oyster Bar.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Gratitudesday: Baby Cat

So, I don't really have time to write the post Baby Cat deserves, but I love him to itty bitty bits.  He's a celebrity,* he's a drunkard, he's adorable beyond words.  The first time I met him, he was just a tiny baby, and he fell asleep in the crook of my arm, and I fell in love.  Then I cried because I love him so much.**  So, rather than a real post about why I love him, I'll leave you with two goofy pictures I just took of him on my cell phone, and this quote from Roger: "Having the Baby Cat stay with us for a weekend makes this apartment real."

Baby Cat Knows What's Up

Why Did I Post This Unflattering Picture of Myself? I Don't Know.
We do actually have some pretty nice pictures of the cat, but his charm is really in these adorable candid shots.  He lies on his back like a baby, he sits like a person (and was sitting that way when I tried to take the picture of both of us), and sometimes he gets himself stuck on the roof or trapped outside in the rain, only to cry until someone rescues him.  Then, he comes inside and cries more, curled up next to my mother, until he feels better or falls asleep.  Baby Cat and me, we are soul-people.

*Erica's blog, even the bit that isn't about Baby Cat, is pretty rad, if you love cats and hipster-living. When I grow up, I want to be as awesome as Erica.
**True story.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Weekend Wanderings: Packages

Oh man, you guys.  This weekend.  It was a doozie.  The back story you may need, because I don't think I've mentioned it on here before, is that Roger and I signed on our first place a few weeks ago, and we're looking forward to moving to Harlem in about two weeks.  We're both really excited for different reasons, but also, turns out that moving in with someone you adore isn't really that much less stressful than any of the other moves I've made.

You may not know this about me, but I don't handle change well, and I hate packing.  I don't like packing for weekend trips or long vacations or school-years, and I seriously, seriously do not like packing up every object I own, including approximately a billion books.  I actually don't totally hate the process of moving, despite the fact that every single time I've ever done it (and that's a total of 14 times between 2004-2009) it's been either over 90*F or raining, because it signals an end to the packing, and a beginning to my favorite part of moving: settling in.  I'm pretty sure I've never moved without shedding at least one tear, and sometimes I end up heaving and then passing out from hyperventilating.  Like Saturday.  I'll spare you the details, but let's just say I'm not great at compromise and also life-transitions are just hard. So, let's focus on the good parts of this weekend, which don't involve wrapping twine around books or donating the world's largest garbage bag of clothes.

My parents have very generously offered to buy Roger and me a couch set.  Despite the unattractive behavior of the day before, we had a really nice time hopping from couch-to-couch at Bob's Discount Furniture and Raymore & Flanagan, deciding which was the most comfortable, which was the most attractive, and which was a livable combination somewhere within our self-imposed budget. We still have to move most of our things in and measure everything, but we're pretty sure we've narrowed it down to two sets:
  • The Tessa - "My Tessa Collection is a classy nod to mid-century modern style! Tailored beautifully throughout, like a well-made, expensive suit! The coordinating decorator throw pillows in neutral colors, will match any decor. This high end look would cost hundreds, if not thousands more in those hoity-toity stores. Why pay more?! Get the same look and save a bundle! Only at my Bob's!" What We Like: much nicer fabric in a better color, smaller structure would fit better in the apartment, fancy shape and overall design, remarkably comfortable.
    The Tessa
  • The Rowley - "My Rowley Collection is a storage lover's dream. The sofa, loveseat, chair and ottoman, all have built in storage compartments. Tidying up the living room has never been easier! Hide magazines, remotes, blankets, toys and the blink of an eye! You get comfort, style, and storage galore without breaking the bank! Only at my Bob's! Why pay more?"  What We Like: storage drawers under your legs, having an individual middle cushion, slightly more comfortable than the Tessa, bigger/better for sleep-overs.
The Rowley (storage drawers not displayed)

We've been taking votes on Facebook and gmail to see which one to get, but if you've got opinions, let me know!  Right now, the Rowley is in the lead, but it could be anyone's game.

We also stopped at Stew Leonard's, which I loved as a kid because of all the singing animatronics and petting zoos and free samples, and which I love as an adult because of their amazing food selection and good work practices and free samples.  During our successful communal food experiment senior year of college, we had a Stew's just a few miles away, and we went at least twice a month.  Now, we probably go closer to twice a year, but it's still just as appealing.  Spending part of Sunday afternoon there made the whole weekend seem better, and the really delicious-looking lobster rolls they had out just made us all the more excited to go to the beach next weekend.