Friday, June 30, 2006

My last night in NYC and I went and saw Spamalot - Eric Idle's adaptation of Monty Python and the Holy Grail to the stage - and it is as silly and funny as I had hoped. I can only remember 3 shows that have made me laugh hard out loud - Spamalot, the Producers and the Fully Monty. The Shubert theater is great - old school and intimate - the closest thing in So Cal is the Pantages. I recommend it to anyone who thinks there is not enough silliness in their life.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Walking back from the Guggenheim through Central Park, I stopped at the the lake where they rent out remote control sail boats. The coolest thing? The snack shop has a full bar, and a nice selection of ice cold beers . . . not a bad place to sit and people watch on a hot day.

Today I went to the Guggenheim Museum. The collection is great, and they have exhibitions of Pollock and Kandinsky, in addition to their regular collection. The building was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, and this is the rotunda.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Rousseau . . .

Picasso . . .
The Museum of Modern Art is absolutely amazing . . . so many Picasso's, Monet's, Matisse's, Pollock's, Kandinsky's to name a few. I was blown away. Here are two photos I took before I got yelled at for using a flash - - which I could not figure how to turn off . . . note to self - read operating manual next time.

Ok, so unbeknownst to me, the Metropolitan Museum of Art is closed on Mondays to the "public" - apparently those were all "privates" going in the front door. Even so, it was a lovely 31 block walk down 5th Avenue, and here are some goats I passed at the Central Park Zoo.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Ok, sure the hotel lost the documents dropped off for me for my meeting tomorrow, but I am right down the street from the Radio City Music Hall!

Just got in to NYC - - the flight was delayed leaving Long Beach b/c of weather in NYC, but Jet Blue is definitely a great way to go. Here Noodles is sorry to see me leave early on a Sunday morning. One good thing about NYC? Chinese food delivered to your hotel room! Yumm - garlic eggplant . . .

Friday, June 23, 2006

Ok, it is very difficult to see, but there is a very pretty orange breasted sparrow at the bird feeder. My birdfeeder, bird bath and bird house are my attempt to create a critter friendly environment, and I truly enjoy watching the birds. This is the good news; the bad news is that Hanna caught a sparrow last week, and ate it (head and feet excepted). I feel bad, but I also kind of think that if you are a non-flightless bird, and you can't avoid being pounced on by a 6 year old yellow lab with bad knees, maybe your time has come . . .

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Beginning in 2004, I started to keep a list of all the books I read and/or listen to over the year. My goal this year is 6 books a month, and these are the books I've read so far - - well I'm in the middle of the last two . . . . The stand outs are highlighted.

White Out - audio
13 Steps Down
Friends, Lovers, Chocolate - audio
Hot Money - audio
Playing With Fire
Slipping Into Darkness - audio
Lost - audio
Cold is the Grave
A Perfect Evil - audio
Gentlemen & Players - audio
Harm Done
Speak of the Devil - audio
In a Sunburned Country - audio
Babbitt - audio
A Sight for Sore Eyes
All Creatures Great and Small - audio
With No One as Witness
No More Dying Then
Barrel Fever
In Pursuit of the Proper Sinner
Banker - audio
44 Scotland Street
The Power of One - audio
Hidden River - audio
Free Fall
All Things Bright And Beautiful - audio
Final Account
In Cold Blood - audio
A Short History of Nearly Everything - audio
Dead I May Well Be - audio
Blood At The Root
The Other Boleyn Girl
A Place of Hiding
The Two Minute Rule
A Traitor to Memory
The Danger - audio

My current knit project (in progress) is the lace tank top Soleil from It is my first attempt at lace knitting, and I like it so far.

I'm hoping that when it is finished, it will go nicely with the tourmaline and yellow citrine necklace I made this weekend.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Some times, nothing beats a lazy afternoon . . . .

Friday, June 16, 2006

I went to the Galapagos Islands two years ago, and was absolutely amazed by the unique wildlife, especially the birds. Albatross, Frigate Birds . . . and lots of Boobies! Here is a nesting Blue-footed Boobie with its chick.

Nazca Boobies . . . .

Nesting Red-footed Boobie

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

With the Clippers out of the playoffs . . .

We're rooting for the Heat.

Monday, June 12, 2006

The Halos are having another frustrating season . . . which is nothing new. In the late '60's, my father took my brother and me to every Angels home game, and I don't recall winning being a big part of that experience. My grandfather was a season ticket holder - the seats were great - on the aisle next to the Angels dugout - on the home plate side - and Angels tickets were not in high demand. Dad would buy us a hot dog and soda, and give us each a dollar to spend how we pleased. Back in those days, a dollar was enough for both a bag of peanuts and an ice cream sandwich. My favorite players were Jim Fregosi and Jim Spencer. I remember being mad as a wet cat when the Angels traded Fregosi . . . . for some guy named Nolan Ryan.

This weekend I finished the Clapotis from Disaster seemed to strike when I ran out of yarn during the second set of decrease rows, but the fourth skein I ordered from was a close enough match to complete the project. Now I can't wait for cool weather in the fall so I can wear it.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Spring is here . . . . which means the Gladiolas are in bloom, and Nanners and Noodles got baths. Here they wait patiently for their post-bath treats.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Ah, the World Cup. My only in person football experience was in 1982, in Edinburgh, Scotland. My friend Jan and I were working our way through the "Pubs of Edinburgh" book, and met 3 nice Scottish lads. The boys invited us to join them the following night to see the "Hearts" play the "Hibs" - the two rival Edinburgh teams. Unbeknownst to us until we met them the next night at another local pub, we would be rooting for the Hearts.

I'd grown up going to Rams' and Angels' games, and was unprepared for Scottish football. To enter the stadium, each team's fans enter from opposite sides of the stadium, and approach via never intersecting streets, thus, hopefully avoiding any interaction. The attendees - at least in the cheap seats - are 99% male. There are no bathrooms provided for women - there are only outhouses for the men, most of whom actually just pee against the outside of the outhouse.

We got our tickets and went in - we were located behind one goal - in standing only bleachers. Everybody stands for the entire match, and with the stomping and chanting, the bleachers never stop moving. Done in thick Scottish accents, the chants were largely unintelligible to Jan and me, so it was really unnecessary for our escorts to keep apologizing.

Final score - Hibs 1, Hearts 0. The headlines the next day spoke of rioting, but we really didn't notice anything amiss. The night ended at a very small pub on Cockburn Street where Davey gave me his Hearts scarf, and a live band played "No woman, no cry". The next day, our Scottish History professor inquired as to which team we'd been rooting for at the game. He approved of our Hearts affiliation. "'Tis good," he said, "I won't have Hibs fans in my class."

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Sunset over Molokai.

Living in Southern California, getting anywhere by car is a nightmare. What saves my sanity is listening to recorded books from Right now I'm listening to "A Short History of Nearly Everything" by Bill Bryson. I had no idea the history of astronomy, atomic science and geology could be so interesting. A few months ago I listened to the audio version of Bryson's "A Walk in a Sunburned Country" about his travels in Australia, and found it laugh out loud funny.

Many years ago I read "In Cold Blood" by Truman Capote, and recently watching the film "Capote" re-piqued my interest. This time I went with the audio version, and was reminded what a beautifully written book it is. Despite the caricature that Capote became, he was an incredibly talented writer. Next up in paperback, the biography of Capote upon which the film was based. I think it will be perfect book to take with me to New York City in a couple of weeks.

Finally, I have recently become a fan of the author Adrian McKinty, again via audio books. His "Dead I May Well Be" and "Hidden River" are both fantastic reads/listens. Next up for me on audio is his latest, "The Dead Yard". His books combine a sort of hard-boiled crime/detective genre with dry Irish wit. A great combination.

And a beautiful Belizean sunset

The very big crocodile that lived in the swamp behind the cabanas . . .

One of our research subjects

I was fortunate this past March to have been able to travel to the beautiful country of Belize with my niece. We went on an expedition organized by the National Wildlife Federation and the Oceanic Society. We stayed in a wonderful cabana on Blackbird Caye, and participated in Bottlenose Dolphin research. We also were able to enjoy some of the best snorkelling I have ever experienced. This is Blackbird Caye . . . .

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Here are the blog's name sakes - Nanners and Noodles - aka Hanna Banana, the yellow lab, and Samantha Jane Noodles, the Basenji/Jack Russell mix!
Since there are a few blogs that I enjoy reading, I decided to create my own!