Thursday, February 12, 2015

Oh February . . . Turquoise against the Blues

 Oddly, since this is a short week for us (Monday was a stat holiday here in BC), my days have been dragging. Fatigue (a touch of winter melancholy or a result of amped-up running mileage?) and headaches and wakeful nights and a general lack of enthusiasm with work which I'm trying hard to disguise.

And the rain.
Oh. My. Goodness.

I'm trying to remember that "at least we don't have to shovel it," and I know that we're luckier than our Eastern cousins, given our moderate temperatures, but there is a limit to the amount of grey and wet a spirit can endure. The pounding sound on the skylights is no longer romantic -- it's just huge drops of mud-making rain. I no longer feel pioneer-nifty any more, splitting kindling, chopping wood, lighting the woodstove when I get home after a day at work -- "cranky" is a more accurate description, or at least "impatient" (Paul's away this week, and yes, I could just turn on the electric heat, but there's no question a wood fire's crackle and glow makes it a worthy companion in the fight against gloom.)

However.

There is beauty, still, in the grey, if only I buck up and look 'round for it. And sometimes it's right there, out the window, even in the clunky-industrial aesthetic of a cargo ship. That turquoise touch on the otherwise predictable grey-white-and-rusty-red caught my eye yesterday -- and it was just the right amount of contrast to enliven the surrounding calm neutrals, and remind me of their beauty.
Seems a worthy principle to think about in putting together outfits or interiors, or any aspect of design, for that matter.

And having reminded myself how small a spark it takes to rekindle some enthusiasm, I'm thinking about what "little bit of turquoise" I can inject into today's classes, both for mine and for my students' sake.

What about you? mid-February, on a Thursday, are you struggling? Any inspirations transforming your days? I could use your ideas, truly. That bit of turquoise can only go so far! 

27 comments:

  1. I so empathize with the mood the continual gloomy grey and wet weather brings....
    There are lovely pops of colour though...crocus, daffodils and the flowering plum and cherry trees. Spring is just around the corner and you'll feel renewal...your views from your island remind me of a Tony Onley painting.

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    1. He really did capture the coastal layers, didn't he, Toni Onley. . . and somtimes Life does seem to imitate Art!

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  2. I think a little bit of turquoise is perfect.

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  3. I am struggling with the question of moving to Victoria when I retire, and I have to say while the temperature sounds enticing, the long gloomy rainy days in winter souind challenging. The photos on Ephemera's blog of her trip to Comox - the moody forest right up to the highway, fog, grey, opressive - the opposite of cheery.

    Your photo of the ship with the mountains in the background has a certain beauty in the shades of blue grey. I think the openess of the view helps for me as well. And a nice fire sounds like a good antidote to a rainy day.

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    1. I'm so not a fan of snow and cold, so I reconcile myself to the rain most of the time, but oh, Februarys are tough! That drive to Comox can be so very beautiful as well, but if you depend on a bright sunny sky and a more open vista, it might not be for you -- although, as you say, once you get near the shore, the openness is wonderful. Honestly, I wouldn't trade it for anywhere, except perhaps in February . . .

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  4. The grey skies throw a switch in me which is hard to switch on again. A ray of sunshine is all it takes. I notice the energy level rise before I notice that the sun is out. Rain forecast for this weekend. I will try to get some knitting finished.

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    1. That switch, yes! If only we could find it in the dark . . .
      Knitting is a very good use of a rainy day -- I might be doing the same.

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  5. This is the time of year that can feel like everything's hit the doldrums isn't it? Beautiful photos, and I hope the rain lets up there (send it down our way, will you?) and some blue skies take their turn providing the color.

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    1. Yes, I'd happily share the rain. Some blue inching its way tentatively into the sky today, so I'm hopeful. . .

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  6. Agree about the turquoise; I have been wearing my favourite turquoise beaded bracelet and drop earrings to work to counterract the dark colours that seemed so very stylish back in the autumn when putting together my wardrobe. Yearn to put away the boots and change the palette. Courage. March beckons.

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    1. I know -- those neutrals and darks seem both stylish and sensible, but February demands colour. Learning wisdom from freighters! March won't be a minute too soon. . .

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  7. This is definitely a challenging time of the year and I wish I had a magic solution on how to make it less so, other than a ticket to Thailand. When the sun comes out, we forget it even rains here. I hang on to that thought. And drown my despair in coffee.

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    1. And there's sunshine on the horizon this weekend, so you can save your coffee. . . Happy Weekend!

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  8. It's grey here too - although warm - and I'm bed-bound after surgery on Monday, so also looking for a hint of colour to lift my sore, boring days ... I have some hyacinths in my room that a friend brought me in hospital, and in the garden outside my bedroom window a lone gardenia is blooming. I wish I could get out there to smell it but even just the splodge of white in my line of vision is slightly cheering! Here's hoping your rain lifts soon.

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    1. Oh, that's even worse. Grey andconvalescent. Hope you're out sniffing gardenias before long, and meanwhile, hooray for hospital hyacinths (and for alliteration, apparently)

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  9. The daffodils help and so do the early plum blossoms down Yates Street. Still, the grey is just so very grey. Definitely ass some turquoise to your day - a brooch, a scarf or a bright pair of gloves might just do it.
    As I write I am waiting for a flight to Edmonton. The airport is full of people wearing the odd bits and pieces one chooses when leaving the cold and damp for the tropics. Me? I'm in Vancouver Island grey, but with a berry red vest.

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    1. Yikes! Of course I meant ADD some turquoise. That reminds me of the time I started an email to my very stuffy boss with 'Hell Bob' having left off that important 'o'.

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    2. Too funny!
      Take care in Edmonton -- hope that berry red keeps you warm (I know there will be plenty of little hugs to help with that!)

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  10. I went to a retired teacher luncheon today wearing fuchsia as I have no Valentine red.
    A little chitchat and the occasional daffodil (before Valentine's Day!!!) made the day brighter.

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    1. I'm having lunch with a friend today as well and I think that will go a long way to cheering me. Glad your day was brightened.

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  11. A row of yellow polyanthus on the kitchen window ledge glowing through the gloom .
    And patience ... endless patience ... only another few weeks .

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    1. Yellow is a lovely antidote to gloom -- it's diametric opposite.
      As for the patience, I'm trying, I'm trying. . . ;-)

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  12. A couple of things that may make you feel better:
    1. Next Feb. you will be retired!
    2. As I write you the windchill puts the real feel temp at... -36.

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    1. I try not to indulge in schadenfreude, but I'll embrace #2 under the heading of #thingscouldbeworse
      and yes, next February . . .

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  13. I remember the endless gray. It nearly drove me mad. Before I read your post, I gazed at your first photo feeling nostalgic, and missing the Island, very, very much. Then I read and remembered. It is the most beautiful place, but dreary in winter. Color is a great pick me up. Bring home some bright pink flowers:)

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    1. I've known people who move here from very cold elsewheres and not be able to enjoy the beautiful forests, mountains, and seascapes of the Coast because the grey just keeps them down.
      As for the pink flowers -- done! my thoughtful husband brought me a few bunches of pink tulips before he headed down to Portland for the week.

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