Monday, June 30, 2008

These bears are statues on the front lawn of Colton Hall in Monterey.

Took a walk this afternoon. The afternoon breeze has clear the air and the blue sky is showing. In the distance I can see Mount Toro shrouded in smoke.

Many kids jumping small waves at the beach, people walking around, pushing strollers, eating ice cream.

The wharf was cluttered with bits of black rope. The fishermen have been repairing their nets.

The fire situation is still dire but for us the air is better. No more ash is falling this afternoon.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

the weather reports are now listing sunny with smoke rather then fog. Smoke has become the on going weather condition. A bright orange ray of sunlight is pouring into my living room this afternoon.
I am distracting myself by reading HOSPITAL by Julie Salamon, A study of Brooklyn's hospital Maimonides. I recommend it as a story of how hospitals actually run.

Today was the first day that I experienced some heaviness in my breathing because of the smoke. It's a good that I am so healthy.

Friday, June 27, 2008

This morning I just didn't want to do anything. I made a long list of things to do and then forgot about it. Put the list on my desk so I can look at it tomorrow.

Still smoke in the air, fires continue.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

The fires continue. After the fog burned off this morning the thick layer of smoke hung over the town creating a strange white light.

Drove to Santa Cruz for a weekly class and they too had low hanging smoke in the air.

Usually I shop at Trader Joe's but this morning I went to Safeways in Pacific Grove to pick up other items. My house is filled with food.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Just heard that Tassajara Zen Center in Carmel Valley is being evacuated because there are three major fires heading their way.

It's foggy this morning and the air still smells of smoke. We are all dazed as we wait to see what will happen next. I have offered my house for some of the evacuees.

And it's 58 degrees in my house, it's cold.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The sky is still filled with smoke. More fires are going. I took the ten year old car into the garage for it's regular maintenance and to check out the orange alert light. I walked home and waited for the call. And of course the call did come, how much am I willing ot pay to keep the car running. This bill is $3,000. OK but I am not sure when I should cut bait and run.

Monday, June 23, 2008

my floors are covered with dead spiders. During the heat wave, the skylights heated up the ceilings and the spiders fell down.

Drove to Santa Cruz today and saw the burnt areas by Highway 1, a least of mile of scorched earth. But the fire is out and the air has little smoke.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

fog this morning, most of the heat is gone. Went out early to buy the Sunday papers and pick up donuts at Red's donuts on Alvarado street. All is well.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Another desert day, heat and smoke. A desert storm came through, thunder lightening and a quick shower. The temperature went down for a while but now it is up again. I don't know why I am so focused on the heat. It too will pass.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Hot, Hot, hot, smoky skies, sirens going off, little fires everyplace. What is going on?

Thursday, June 19, 2008

I am just finishing a second book by George Packer. The first book, THE VILLAGE OF WAITING was about his experience in the Peace Corps and now I am finishing BLOOD OF THE LIBERALS a book about his grandfather and his father and their relationship to progressive and liberal political ideas.

Although the book is thick and wordy I am getting a new perspective on the political mix I grew up in and who I am now. yes I do recommend these books. I plan to read the third book soon.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Walking on the waterfront this morning I saw that whole sections of the plantings near the waterfront had been cut down and dead bushes were piled up. Was this vandalism, or what. It was ugly.

Warm sunlight today

Took the 6 year old and 8 year old to the afternoon movies, KUNG FU PANDA. I don't know if I like it.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The yellow check you engine is on in my car. It was on last week and then went on this week again.

The car drives well, not over heating. I have a non emergency appointment on next Tuesday to check out the car.

But still the light is on and I am aware that at any time my car could die.

I now carry the cell phone that my son gave me just in case.

The sun is out after a cold morning of fog.

Monday, June 16, 2008

On Mondays the Yellow Brick Road thrift store sells all their books at half price. I spent a half hour picking out the books I wanted.

At the last minute I looked at the pile of books again and said No, I don't have room for more books and slipped them back onto an empty shelf.

Driving home on Pacific Street several dozen young people were waving hand painted signs. Variations of, Honk if you believe in love. I didn't honk, I'm too skeptical. It felt like a Jesus event.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Walk on the waterfront this afternoon. Cold fog drifting over the wharf. This didn't stop families form spending time at the beach. Adults wrapped in blankets while kids in skimpy bathing suits played at the edge of the cold water.

Other families were walking around pushing strollers, and wheel chairs. Long lines formed outside the popular restaurants on Alvarado st. Happy Father's day.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

I actually planned to do something significant today. Yes I did. You can see where this post is going. I picked up the latest Donna Leon book and have spent the afternoon lying on the couch reading. The fog has come in, the bed is unmade and the book is wonderful.

Friday, June 13, 2008

i walked downtown this afternoon to meet with my friend for the movies. Near the high school there was several poison oak bushes crowding the pathway.

I had to watch to see that my hands didn't accidentally brush against these shinny green leaves.

We saw the new Red Balloon movie, I had expected it to be more interesting. Oh well.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

More smoke in the air. Fires still out of control in the Santa Cruz area.

Went to my book group to learn that only one other person liked the book I had recommended. WAITING FOR SNOW IN HAVANA.

I loved the book but the others didn't finish it or didn't like it except for Don. Yea for Don. I guess we all have different tastes and one book doesn't please everyone. I wish I had a better attitude about choosing books.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Coming over the Carmel hill I saw clouds in the distance. Good I thought.

No it's smoke from another fire. Fire season has started early. The area is filled with hazy smoke.

I never thought I would look forward to the fog. Where is that fog?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Drove back from Santa Cruz at dusk. There was a long delay on highway 1 for construction. Sitting in line with all the other cars, we slowly all turned off the motors, gas is too expensive to waste. With the window down I could feel the night air and watch the last of the daylight fade form the earth. Birds were calling.

Finally our convoy was given the OK to move and we started up the engines and drove slowly through Moss Landing.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Two big black crows were strutting around my deck this morning, cawing at each other. I went to the glass door to get a closer look.

One crow was trying to keep away another crow from the saucer of water under the plant pot.

It must be really dry out there if they are fighting on my deck.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Went to the Cherry Center art show opening yesterday afternoon. Imaginative colorful figure drawings.

This is a group of artists that have been meeting weekly for 20 years to draw. Each artist had the opportunity to talk about her process to the crowd. At the end the whole audience wanted to go home and start drawing. Each artist made their art so vivid that the excitement was catchy.

In twenty years our art will be on these same walls.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Fierce winds today. Driving to CSUMB on Highway 1, I spotted small boat off shore. At first it was hard to see the boat because it was periodically hidden by the huge waves and the white caps. What was it doing out there on such a windy day?

But my car was speeding along and I lost sight of this boat. The view from a moving car is so quick. much better to be walking and have a chance to really see what is going on. Today I was driving and had no time to walk.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Our zen center rents space in the art gallery at the Cherry Center. The art on the walls is always changing. We sit and walk and try not to look. But the pictures now are so compelling that they compete with the quiet mind.

This is a group exhibit of figure drawings with both male and female nudes. The male nudes are so interesting because we seldom see them.

Hurray for art.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

fixing my lunch at my house I had to struggle with the urge to go out to a restaurant to eat. I love eating out, but I had good food here. What was I missing?

I turned on the radio to NPR and filled the kitchen with sounds of human voices.

Yes that did it. Human voices satisfied me.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

There are two kinds of people out today, those who know and those who don't, it's election day and here we are choosing our democratic candidate for the state senate. Those of us who want our candidate, greet each other with great eagerness. We know we are going to win. Are we? we won't find out until tonight.

At lunch at Ocean Sushi in Monterey some friends said they knew for sure that our candidate was going to win.

I wish I had that kind of confidence to see into the future.

I live in my little bubble among friends who think like me.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Driving to the Cherry Center Zendo early this morning I saw a dead raccoon in the middle of the highway.

I thought Oh poor raccoon, hit by a car and then my darker realistic side arose saying, wait, raccoons are a problem for our community, why am I feeling sorry for it.

But the animal was dead and I wished it well.

No one deserves to be run over by a car.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Yesterday I got to eat both lunch and dinner out at my favorite restaurants, Turtle Bay for lunch and Full Moon for dinner. I got to eat with a friend who was willing to eat out.

Even though I have food in the house I still would prefer to eat at a restaurant with friends.

I wonder if I will ever get over this.