In Other News....

Death Cab
We just got back from seeing Death Cab for Cutie in San Luis Obispo. It was a great show. We were hosted royally by Matt & Sada and spent the day indolently wandering around San Luis, a town which holds many memories of life in the 1980's for me, like seeing Ghostbusters in the theatre and buying white lace high tops with my step mom (which I promptly wore with my brother's Frankie Goes to Hollywood T-shirt; but I remember the awkward preteen self-consciousness most of all.) San Luis rolled out the red carpet for us, really showing off: there was Boo Boo Records & its next door neighbor Phoenix Books in all its rambling glory, where I picked up Barry Moser's beautiful version of the Bible designed with his stunning illustrations for just twenty little dollars. Can you guess which Old Testament-prophet-that-is-going-to-be-inside-a-cetacean-really-soon this picture depicts? Also the Mission, with its august & gnarled pomegranates & grape arbors-oh, and the ubiquitous coastal fog rolling in over the golden hills. In the afternoon, over said hills and up the coast a bit we watched a pod of dolphins feeding in the bay as pelicans circled and dive-bombed overhead, inviting themselves to lunch in a most loud and splashy manner. Driving home via Hwy 1 over the Bixby Bridge reading the last chapter of Perelandra aloud to B, dipping in and out of valleys and fog-shrouded cliffs with the sun alternately glinting and disappearing made me remember just why it is I have chosen to live on the central coast of California. I haven't seen Big Sur or the Los Padres National Forest since the forest fires this summer; it was good to see the re-growth already-lots of little red-flowered sticky monkey and small green coyote brush. I think the fog must have something to do with that, for we still haven't had the rains for which we have been longing.
In Which I Come Clean
Sorry for the silence. It's been quite an interesting last few months, and every
time I've managed to crawl to the keyboard to put something down on rosa, I've considered it a victory. I mean to say, I'm pregnant. Three months-full. And so far it's been different the second time around, fraught with nausea and long rides on what B calls the 'queasy train.' I've spent a lot of time working, chasing G or carefully not moving, trying with all my might to sort of gastronomically alight on one item of food that won't summon the dry-heaves. It's been...distracting, to say the least.
When I was pregnant with G I do remember vague stirrings of nausea and tiredness, all very novel; along with food cravings that were for the most part easy to satiate, except for the first few months when we were still living in Scotland and I craved fresh vegetables. Hah! If only I had craved deep-fried pizza, sausage rolls, Ribena and bacon-flavored crisps, with which our village was lousy. Och aye! The grease! But this, this is all about the sleep and the small pale nibbles on crackers, weak tea and retchings. It's gradually subsiding, and today I happily put away my lunch with nary a lurch. So hopefully it's past.

An unfortunate side effect of all this is how little I seem to want to write. It's been hard to even want to articulate life through the written word, not to mention how hermit-like I feel all the time. But I have been reading quite a bit: Willa Cather, Madeline L'Engle, Lewis; mainly books of the cozy-lit genre. I picked up a cheap copy of The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov, (a book Franny positively moons over, it's like me trying to talk calmly about George MacDonald) but the first few chapters have made me (you guessed it) queasy. See what I mean? I'll try again later, Fran, when I can look at the weird forked-tongue cat on the cover without wanting to heave.

You probably can't tell from all this that we are actually overjoyed with the prospect of an addition to our family. Of course we are. And it's interesting how it is in actual life. You hope and hope for an event, and are glad when it happens, but then have trouble seeing the 'roof for the trees', as my friend Gavin says. I'm trying to keep my head up, eyes looking to the hills, from whence comes my help......but if you could pray for me, I'd be grateful.


jessica said...

Wow, Congratulations! That's wonderful! Not the queasy train bit though, of course. Ha, books making one queasy! I'm trying to think of very horizontal books, and can only think of agatha christie mysteries, which can be quite boring.

rosa said...

Jessica! I've missed you! How are you? How's Edinburgh? I just finished the latest of Alexander Mccall Smith's Scotland Street books, and I thought of you.....

Lucy said...

It's a different kind of creativity!

So pleased everything is chugging along fine - even if queasily.

(I'm jumping up and down here shouting 'hurray' across the Atlantic.)

Mind, babies are a bit distracting and one can never properly anticipate their impact.

You may disappear from the blog waves for years . . . or write great long over-exhausted essays every mid-night.

It'll be interesting to find out!


rosa said...

Thanks, Luce. I started rosa when G was a year old, but I remember that feeling of not approaching a computer for weeks. We also had a ratty old dial-up at that point, and I hadn't the patience (or brain-power or time) to sit and wait...we'll see what this time around brings! And we are still talking about a 2010 summer trip across the Pond!

Camille said...

That Barry Moser Bible is the coolest. I had a fantasy when I was 12 of doing a really gritty Bible, and voila, now I don't have to.

Jon said...

i was in san luis a few days before you. i had a few friends that were going to that show but they ended up not being able to make it.

san luis is great.

Read Your Way Through the Garden: Choice Tomes From Garden Literature

  • A Book of Salvias by Betsy Clebsch
  • Botany for Gardeners by Brian Capon
  • Making Bentwood Trellises by Jim Long
  • RHS Encyclopedia of Plants & Flowers
  • Rose Primer: An Organic Approach to Rose Selection & Care by Orin Martin
  • Start With the Soil by Grace Gershuny
  • Sunset Western Garden Book
  • Sunset Western Landscaping Book
  • The Book of Garden Secrets by Patent & Bilderback
  • The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Botany
  • the Gardener's Table: A Guide to Natural Vegetable Growing and Cooking by Richard Merrill & Joe Ortiz
  • The Gardener's Year by Karel Capek
  • The Hutchinson Dictionary of Plant Names: Common & Botanical
  • We Made A Garden by Margaret Fish

lotsa latin: rosa's botanical & etymological ruminations

  • vespertinus: flowers in the evening
  • vernalis:spring
  • veni vidi nates calcalvi: we came, we saw, we kicked butt. This was printed on a T shirt I bought at Abbot's Thrift many years ago. It encircled the NEA symbol. I wish I knew why.
  • superciliaris: shaped like an eyebrow ex: sturnella superciliaris, the White-browed Blackbird
  • rosa-sinensis: species of Hibiscus: Hibiscus rosa-sinensis. Lit. Rosa of China, so named by British plant hunters.
  • placentiformis: shaped like a cake ex: discocactus placentiformis
  • nudiflorus: flowers before leaves show ex: flowering quince, magnolia
  • nivalis: growing in or near snow ex: galanthus nivalis (common snowdrop)
  • muralis: growing on walls
  • mirabilis: marvellous, wonderful
  • formosa: beautiful ex: dicentra formosa, a.k.a.western bleeding heart/dutchman's breeches/lady in a bath
  • carpe vitam: get a life
  • Carolus Linnaeus: Latinized name of Carl von Linne (1707-1778), Swedish naturalist considered the father of plant taxonomy. Whatta guy.