Sunday, October 31, 2010


The installation at the National Gallery is more impressive than the one in the Boston Common, I have to confess. It brought me to tears.

The columns rise so high at the entrance. I wish I had thought to include something that conveyed scale.

We saw Dutch masters' exceptional work, a handful of English painters' scenes and portraits, and many, many works by American artists.

11 Years

It had been 11 years since I last saw Cydni. She's the kind of old friend who can pick up exactly where we left off.


Today we went to the Smithsonian Gallery of Art. (We went yesterday to the East Building, today to the West Building.) Fabulous sculpture garden!

We also went to the Museum of American History. We saw Julia Child's kitchen, transplanted from Cambridge, and the inauguration gowns of the First Ladies. Tress loved Mamie Eisenhower's. I hated Jackie Kennedy's and liked Betty Ford's and Rosalyn Carter's.


We saw just a few of the sights to see in town on rally day. I love it that the Newseum has the First Amendment on a huge wall on its facade.


The crowds took serious time to thin. Tress and I stayed put until we could move around. We snapped a few pictures of cute/clever signs, but we had earlier seen so many wonderful ones that I just didn't think to photograph. One of my favorites was W.W.J.D. (explanation later).

I called my husband later in the day, and he told me that John Legend had opened the show. Of all the acts that I felt sure would be there, I wanted to see John Legend the most. I was still on the Metro when he was onstage. (BTW, Who Wants Jelly Donuts?)

We were there for the keynote speech (after the "debate"). I do love me some Jon Stewart.

DC Rally

It was so, so, incredibly packed. We started to think that it could be a little crowded when we saw these guys waiting for the same flight that we were BALTIMORE. We got off the plane, drove to the northern terminus of the DC Metro, and found that trains were already packed when they entered the station. They were full of people who had not been able to board south-bound trains at their points of origin and so decided to head north first and wait.

The Metro now reports that there were more than 825,000 train trips on Saturday, when typically the number is 350,000. I can't guess how many people gave up, unable to find room on a train into DC.

We missed the first 90 minutes, in part because of the Metro crowding, and in part because it took us a good half-hour to push our way through the crowds and sort-of toward the center.

Sunday, October 17, 2010


My sister, her husband, and her two children are in Long Beach, CA, this weekend, attending a wedding. (I don't have a current picture of my sister's husband, so I'll run an extra one of her two children, from when they were in Gloucester in August, fishing.)

We all just attended a celebration of marriage in New York last weekend (see below) -- two of these pics are from that day. The NY event was fantastic, but my sister's report makes it sound like the food in CA wins, hands down: Peruvian cilantro chicken, and peanut potatoes.

Cilantro chicken:
Peanut potatoes:

Another 16

Vic and I saw this boat in the distance in Smith's Cove (not while kayaking, but on foot). It was difficult to photograph because it was behind a B&B.

The boat in question has a dark blue hull, and it's on the right-hand side of the dock. It's the same boat that Vic and I own, only this one's blue.

Last month, a person who was staying at the B&B ran this picture on a Gloucester blog, (an excellent blog, btw). Its the very pic that Vic and I had wanted to take, so I 'nabbed' it... with the intention of noting that the blog, popularly known as GMG, is well worth a visit.

Friday, October 15, 2010


I'm sick, sick, sick. Can barely talk. Nonetheless I was all over creation today, acquiring stuff for the room (where, at work, we host the kid clients). Got a big plush pillow and fleece, plus a 2nd DDR mat and a 2nd GH guitar... can't find the second mat that I know I used to have, plus somehow I've lost the controller for the wireless #2 guitar, which I can find, but which is useless without the controller. And I got a cute rug for the Lego area, only $7.99!

Also I picked up pencils, cards, etc., for the homework boxes, since on the first day everybody wanted to go play during the homework period -- and that would have been pretty disruptive for the kids who were still working on homework. Got some =quiet= puzzles for the homework boxes, too.

Now I just have to tackle the resistance that I encountered from one of the other grown-ups in the room. *sigh*

Monday, October 11, 2010

Glass Fest

From the journal and the link above, here are a few pictures from the festival. Sign up for the journal!

There was a guy there, not pictured, who said he had no website (yet). He makes tables with sea-glass mosaic tops. They were lovely, utilitarian, and sturdy.

The mosaic artist pictured had some incredible stuff there. The guy holding the T-shirt didn't have any for sale on Saturday, so I nabbed his business card.


Spent Saturday evening till this morning in New York State (just outside NYC, actually). A good friend was celebrating his marriage, and he held a big party to which all of his family (plus most of mine) was invited.

We all grew up on the same block in Flint, Michigan. We gathered from Massachusetts, Oregon, Utah, Minnesota, and Indiana -- not a one of us still lives in Michigan.

It was 75 degrees in NY!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Cape Cod

Vic and I are staying on the "other cape" tonight, planning to get to the Sea Glass Festival in Hyannis tomorrow. We are staying only tonight, and I just checked the NASGA website ( and saw that submissions for Shard of the Year aren't accepted until Sunday. By then we'll be in NY!

It's pretty tragic. I was tempting my husband with tales of how astonishing last year's submissions were. You could walk through the room where they were all on display, oohing and aahing, and you could submit shards as of opening moment on Saturday. Dammit.

I will try to get pictures of SOMEthing worth posting.

Pomegranate and Chocolate

The best pomegranate martini available is found at Jalapeno's in Gloucester. No martini bar, standard bar, restaurant, or bistro that I've entered in Salem, Peabody, Danvers, Essex, Gloucester, Beverly, or Newburyport has its equal. The pom-martini is often too sweet or too strong, without character or bite. Jalapeno's is a class apart.

Today I sampled the second-best pomegranate martini. You know who serves it? The 99.

The chocolate martini is a specialty of Gloucester. The Franklin on Main has an amazing one, and Alchemy on Pleasant does a wowza chocolate clementine martini that goes oddly well with its Provencal platter (see below).

Saturday, October 2, 2010


Of course, the original recommendation that I would make, and have been making for 20 years now, is that you visit Pomodoro (North End, Boston). It's tiny (let's call it 'intimate'). The food is amazing, and the chef operates within eye-contact range. Awesome aromas, and atmosphere galore.

Alchemy & The Black Lobster

These are two restaurants that recently lit my fire.

Alchemy (Gloucester) has an amazing new menu. It features lamb sirloin in harissa, a Provencal platter of white-bean hummus and olive tapenade, and moules frites (mussels with fries) with yummy aioli. The chocolate clementine martini makes a great dessert.

The Black Lobster (Salem) genuinely grills the items that it identifies as "grilled": filet mignon, scallops, shrimp, asparagus... and before grilling them, the chef liberally doses these items with sea salt. Simple, but very yummy. Plus, the view (trains, boats, and automobiles) is endlessly entertaining, and the pasta is delightfully al dente. AVOID the espresso martini; the shiraz is quite good.