Sunday, May 31, 2015

Looking Back at the Week, Coming Up Roses. . .

Back home, Paris week and Seattle getaway behind me, my Retirement Dinner a happy memory, an Important Dinner and a Convocation this coming week, and then I think I'll begin clearing out my office. The landscape hasn't been clear enough yet for me to know how I'll begin to shape my retirement days, so I'll wait for it to settle. Meanwhile, running, reading, kayaking, family, gardening, yoga, blogging, grandkids, occasional napping, lots of Netflix, a bit of sketching and watercolour painting, Tweeting, Instagramming. . . "Oh, the world is so full of a number of things," as RLS said, that I don't suppose I'll lack for what to do. . . .
Graham Thomas, a favourite climber, so fragrant

At the moment, I'm taking a few minutes to look back at the week's postings and to share photos of my roses. Truly, let's be honest, I just want an excuse to flash rose pictures at you. They're so extravagant and fragrant and rich and ebullient and exquisite and colourful . . . .and on, and on. . .
Rosa complicata, also fragrant, a once-bloomer, so I pay attention for a week or two. . .

So I'll punctuate my review of the last week's postings with images of roses. . .
Fantin Latour -- delectable layers, all ruffly perfume. . . 

On Tuesday, I posted my somewhat rambling post about running in Paris with my sister, not only about how this contributed to the week's differences from the way Paul and I visit Paris together, but also about how running has helped me counter those messages about What to Wear in Paris and the very admonitory tone they often carry. Not so sure I managed to express what I meant, but I loved the lively conversation that built around this post -- readers here are so great!
Hansa, a R. rugosa that can duke it out with the tough seaside conditions and bloom healthily all summer

Then on Thursday, I followed up with a What I Wore in Paris post, trying to demonstrate what can be done with a wardrobe that fits into a carry-on case while also, I hope, giving a sense of what the city means to me.
Constance Spry, another beauty that pours out all her blooms in one intense bout.

Saturday's post recounted the meet-up Pater and I were lucky enough to have with Sue, of Une Femme fame, and her husband, known on her blog as Le Monsieur. The meet-up was in Seattle, and I've promised to tell you a bit about our stay there. Until I get around to doing that, you'll notice, if you browse Instagram at all, that I could scarcely stop with my camera and the posting -- very impressed with Seattle's visual richness (to say nothing of its food. food. and yummier food!).
Okay, you really have to look to spot these three white Darlow's Enigma blooms, but soon this whole clambering, unstoppable rose will cover the gateway in a really tough spot (seasalt, wind, dry) -- and bloom fragrantly all summer long.

Darlow's Enigma rose, planted here only two summers ago. . . workhorse!
And that's not all. Besides my three posts here, I also managed to post at my Reading Blog -- a second post in less than a week, after a hiatus of many months. . . . If you're looking for recommendations of mystery novels or of books about Italy, you might be interested in popping over. Caveat: it's a short post and the reviews are cursory, some books get a mention only, but I'm trying to get back in the book-blog habit. . . 

Last photo is of a rose that needs no cultivation at all. A wild rose, the perfect companion for the seaside vista -- can you smell that rose-and-saltspray?

So there we go. Another week over, a new one begins. Will I even notice the weeks changing as I embrace my retirement?  I wonder. . . .Did you have a good weekend? Any plans for the upcoming week or month?


  1. Thank you for the roses Mater! We have had a quiet weekend, as usual really. Yesterday I went to an afternoon tea put on by the church ladies' auxiliary - tea in china cups, sandwiches and dainties, very nice. This week our back yard will be fenced, then we can start thinking about filling in the postage stamp-sized space. First, my husband will build a deck - after that we may only have room for a few pots!

    1. That tea would go very well with my roses, wouldn't it?! I should plan an afternoon tea in my back garden.
      A deck with pots might be a very nice way to garden -- it's surprising how much can be grown in pots and how creative the arrangements can be.

  2. I have been dead heading my roses and enjoying their colour while Mr. HB has been busy rebuilding our front stairs. I took to the pavement with too much vigour this week and managed to get a nasty blister on my heel.
    What brand of shoes do you buy for running/walking? I think I need to look for better ones. All those days of walking in Paris wearing my Clarks and not a sore in sight.
    Your new life awaits...I am betting you will be busier than you ever thought possible!

    1. I get my shoes at FrontRunners here in Nanaimo where they're so good at helping me choose what suits: I wear a pair of Mizunos in the city and I have a pair of Pearl Izumi Emotions for the island (running on dirt road is different than running on pavement). To avoid blisters, consider picking up BodyGlide (running/fitness stores sell lit). And you might find a patch of Second Skin is helpful to protect that blister while it heals (I NEVER pop mine -- the body builds them for a reason, imho). Must be so frustrating to get that blister at home after all those days walking Paris -- but thank goodness you didn't get it there!

  3. Love your roses, especially the more wild ones. Enjoy every bit of the transition into retirement.

    1. Thanks, Lisa. It's a process, this retirement transition. . .

  4. Your roses are lovely. You won't really notice retirement until September. I went to one of Monsieur's gigs last night at the Cottage Bistro. A sure sign of retirement is when you go out on a school night. Unfortunately, I don't keep musician hours and I am awake at 5:00 am. When I was volunteering in the Oaxaca Lending Library (anglophone adults) Donna Leon was probably the most popular author. Mysteries are definitely the favourite genre of retired adults. What are you watching on Netflix? We watched Bloodline last week. It is slow to get going but the dynamics of adult siblings was interesting to watch.

    1. Yes, I think you're right. The impact probably won't be noticeable until the fall, although I usually spend much of the summer reading for upcoming courses and thinking about how to invite students into whatever texts I'm choosing -- I suspect that impulse will last for a long time. . . We watched Bloodline and enjoyed those dynamics -- and the setting. Right now, I'm watching Frankie and Grace and together we've been watching Daredevil (Marvell comics--a concession to some of Pater's viewing preferences, but it's fun to watch)


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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