Thursday, July 27, 2017

Beach Walk, Continued. . .

First, I should point out that text and photos in this post have very little to do with each other. The photos were taken on the weekend on an island beach, in case you missed the explanation in my last post. The text comprises a brief accounting of my last few days -- frankly, what's going on here is a kind of Treading Water, Blog-wise. I'm trying to keep my blogging head above water until I find a bit more time and space for it, not wanting to climb out of the pool quite yet. (Not entirely sure that metaphor is particularly felicitous, but it will have to do for now.)

Still busy here. The Eight and I are heading to see some art this morning, and then perhaps a spot of shopping downtown. . .
On Tuesday, we had a sketching session at the VanDusen Botanical Garden;  we've also done some knitting together, and had some fun writing snail mail to put in an envelope she made and decorated from a fun template we found here.
We've read to each other (if you're looking for good books for an 8-12, Jeanne Birdsall's Penderwicks might be just what you need).


We've baked up a very nice banana bread (despite discovering that my loaf pans never made the move! Or are packed deep in some storage box somewhere -- a Pyrex casserole dish was a decent substitution for a novelty-shaped loaf, but loaf tins are on the shopping list).



Yesterday, she had a play date with a friend, and Pater had meetings downtown all day, so I had my first day to myself in at least a week.
I have to say that it was glorious, but that it went much too quickly. I started with a 90-minute bike ride to Stanley Park and around the seawall, and when I got home, I puttered for at least an hour, closer to two.

Not sure about you, but puttering is almost as good for me as walking on a beach. A certain kind of puttering, that is, the kind you do when there isn't anything pressing that must be done, and there's already a reasonable level of order and cleanliness. The joy disappears if I try to putter in an environment that makes demands.

Puttering yesterday morning meant a bit of laundry -- especially hanging it out on the deck to dry. It meant sorting out some mail that had arrived when we had a full house, so had put to the side for "later." It meant honouring the promise to myself that I'd buy tickets to Bard on the Beach (done! tix to Much Ado About Nothing).
It meant loading these photos into this post and getting that pea-soup post one tiny step closer to publishing. I also spent some time brainstorming about our trip to Italy in December -- it's primarily a baby-sitting gig, but I'm wanting to maximize the travel by adding on a city/country or two.


As only the best putterers can do (oh, I'm very talented ;-), I also stood in one spot for a bit too long, more than once, looking very vacant, but truly, quite full, quite occupied, internally. . .  (Perhaps you do this too?)

But puttering time is done, and a Not-So-Little-Anymore Girl arrives shortly to hang out with me. The other day, she showed up in a beautifully flower-printed long summer dress she'd chosen in Rome (I'd slipped her a few Euros before her trip, just in case she got some shopping time). We decided she was dressed for an elegant lunch (hence the sketching trip to VanDusen Gardens where they have a suitable restaurant). My effort to reach the sartorial bar she'd set meant a dress as well, and when I checked its suitability with her, she said, "Well, you bought it in Paris, didn't you?" and giggled. Point made. We headed out in our "I bought my dress in a European city" outfits (right after we made Pater change out of his shorts and t-shirt. Poor Pater).

So I'd better get an "Off to the Art Gallery with my Granddaughter" outfit ready, right? And what are you up to today? Hope you enjoyed the virtual beach walk. Also hoping I've raised the competitive spirits of all you putterers out there. We should pick a date, see how much puttering we can fit in, compare notes. . . . But that rather defeats the Puttering Purpose, doesn't it? Okay, I'm descending into nonsense here, which means it's time to go. Ta-ra. . .

23 comments:

  1. Your time with Not-So-Little sounds like fun. You have so many interests in common...you won't run out of things to do!

    I am going to putter outside, before it gets too hot...some large-ish weeds have been waving to me and laughing...

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    1. Oh, those weeds -- something I don't miss from my old garden -- good luck!

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  2. We are still decorating here today but have arranged a dog walk for tomorrow with friends , their young son , his German exchange student friend & their two poodles- plus our lurchers of course . There is a pretty wooded area near here , where the steep valleys were flooded years ago for reservoirs & it is now a lovely walking area . It has been quite dry so the old ruined village may be poking out if the water . It's always nice to see that . Atmospheric . You sound very busy doing all that puttering .
    Wendy in York

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    1. I love the idea of that walk, can almost picture it -- and to dream up stories about that old ruined village. Plus all those romping dogs -- I'll bet it was fun!

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  3. Lovely photos!
    I've learned a new word today-"puttering"-it sounds very seducing and I like it very much :-)
    I was wondering how Nola liked her Rome experience
    Hope to see your Romana/Parisienne outfits
    Dottoressa

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    1. Glad to have taught you such an important word -- Yes, Puttering can quickly seduce. Just give in. . . ;-)

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  4. Puttering, pottering...the bliss. I do it all the time and the smallest potter/putter brings great joy. I am going to go and do some now, as it happens. I want to look out all my running/walking medals and see just what races I have taken part in. Every morning I go outside and have a little putter about with my coffee cup. Like you, I am very good at simply standing and today I went up to the airport to pick people up and just sat in the car park watching planes come in and take off. Very calming. There should be more of this, in my opinion. Spearhead the movement! In a non-committal sort of way.

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    1. Wow - you are a lucky person to have figured this out!

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    2. Seconding what K.Line said. Although I'd argue that I've also figured it out. Just not so good at the execution, but working on it.
      And yes, non-committal spearheading is just the ticket...

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  5. I love puttering, and I am an expert at standing still and staring into space while wondering what to do next. For (at least) the last two decades though, puttering has been an almost forbidden luxury. Although I knew that it was slightly mad to feel guilty about doing the laundry or watering the flowers while there were papers screaming to be marked, I could not help feeling that way. That's what a teaching job does to us, as you will know. Now I am into some serious culling, and I am loving every minute of it.
    Any chance of our paths crossing in December?

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    1. It's so true about a teaching position, especially since there's always the sense that time not spent on prepping or marking should be directed toward research/scholarship which, of course, can never be completed...
      I did consider aiming at an airport in your general direction, but I don't think it's in the cards for this trip. . .

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  6. You're so gloriously sympatico with your gdaughter! What a gift. And I never realized this but I am a master putterer?! I do it in the kitchen (best with wine, though it's not necessary) and I read the computer, cook, talk on the phone, clean, listen to music. It's totally fun - though it's a weekend thing for me, what with the job!

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    1. I do find it such a joyous relationship, truly a gift.
      You're right about puttering -- it can absolutely include some standing still, staring into space, daydreaming, but it can also be productive in relaxing, non-predictable ways. Laundry, cooking, baking, web-surfing, looking for a photo you remember putting somewhere. . .

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  7. Looking at these pictures I see the possibility of some great sketches! I know I've mentioned it many times before but every time you talk about cycling through Stanley Park and along the sea wall I'm immediately transported back to the day we spent just doing that ... that ride alone makes me appreciate how wonderful it must be to live in Vancouver!
    Wondering which cities youre planning to visit on your next trip to Italy? :)
    Rosie

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    1. You did that same bike ride? Isn't it gorgeous? I'm so glad you took away such a positive impression of my city.
      Much of this next Italy trip will be spent in a small beach town not far from Rome -- Pater and I will be helping our son-in-law with g'daughter while our daughter does a course out of town. I do imagine we'll get away on weekends (probably with our SIL) but not sure where to yet.

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  8. Love the beach photos. I also spent the day puttering and staring into space. It never feels like wasted time. I'm quite sure that staring into space can lower blood pressure. Especially if the space stared at has a garden....
    Ali

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    1. Oh yes, especially puttering in a garden, or simply staring at it. And the clearing away of mental terrain, for me at least, allows new ideas to begin building...

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  9. I putter all the time when I am at home: pull a few weeds, tidy a drawer or cupboard,
    cull books... I'm sure that it lowers blood pressure. Your time with Nola sounds like fun. You share your love of fashion, art and books in a meaningful way. The beach photos are great.

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    1. Putterers of the blogging community, Unite! Oh wait, we already have ;-)

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  10. I'm a committed putterer . It's the best of past times don't you think? I said to my husband just the other day that I'd discovered something about myself ! I realize I need to shuffle ( putter ) and organize ( putter ) a fair bit to get my juices flowing before I belly up to the table in my studio. Sweeping , shuffling , moving bits around , likely looking for all intents and purposes like a dog circling on a rug before they settle down to sleep. That's me . Oh, and BTW ... lucky grandkids ;) . I'm sure they wouldn't swap you for any other.

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    1. You describe this so well. I discovered it about myself when I was writing my doctoral dissertation (forever and ever!). I need to putter to put some distance between so many external tasks that impinge, so that I can make a bit of room for creative mental work....The dog circling on a rug is a perfect image of it. (and I do think the grandkids are happy with the model, if only I'd get serious about taking out the sewing machine ;-)

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  11. Oh I am a dedicated putterer. And I adore being still and just watching or thinking, or letting my thoughts putter away on their own without added influence.

    What a wonderful post.

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    1. Readers and Putterers and Knitters Together ;-)

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I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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