Monday, June 8, 2009

Drowning Here in Summer's Cauldron

And it's not even Summer yet. Officially.....

So I went for my Mother's Day massage on Friday. It was so relaxing that I fell asleep. With snoring.

Delicate flower, that's me.

Anyway, that delightful relaxed state of being set the tone for the whole weekend. Since then, I:

(1) Consumed my weight in mini devil's food cupcakes with cream cheese frosting (a relaxed attitude toward food if ever there was one);
(2) Ate a scrumptious lunch of chunky chicken salad at the Village Porch Cafe with the The Dancer and Garbo (Garbo had ice cream because that's how she rolls, apparently, and her mama was in an indulgent mood);
(3) Bought a stack of used books at the Friends of the Library book sale, including One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez which I purchased not so much because I was itching to finally read this book (books about Central and South America always make me crave Mexican and South American food - what is that all about?), but because it had a letter stuck in between the pages. I'd have felt like a rat if I'd just swiped the letter and not bought the book for less than a quarter. Now I feel like I have to read the book which will result in all kinds of cravings like guacamole, arroz con pollo and lots and lots of tortilla chips. Great.
(4) Cruised the local shops and purchased my first typically female Vera Bradley doo-dad to control the contents of my abyss of a purse while the female Royal Pains danced around me singing songs of wonder and praise that I'd finally seen the righteousness of purchasing over-priced quilted accessessories. Look, if the dang thing keeps me from cursing as I root through my hemp, low-slung hippy bag, it was worth the sixteen dollars on sale;
(5) Went to a car show with the family, and...when not in a short-burst cleaning frenzy with appropriate music, and
(6) Pretty much sat on my behind and read this book.

Which I'm loving so much that I want to finish it already and see how it ends.

And I admit it. The short burst "cleaning" frenzy included ten minutes of hot make up sex with the neglected vacuum cleaner and wiping away bathroom dust with a washcloth I'd just finished using on my face. You know, hygienic to the max!

The car show was fun except The Royal Pains get kind of twitchy after a while. Maybe it was the exhaust fumes from the muscle car guys revving their engines or the live music or all those people! walking around, but after about twenty minutes, two of The Royal Pains started making sounds about wanting to "do something." "Do something is code for electronic activity. Them apples didn't fall far from the tree.

But see, I'm really trying to unplug, stay unplugged and like being unplugged. I realized a few weeks back that I had gotten so addicted to being online that I wasn't enjoying the "real" life I had happening all around me. Mind you, there's plenty to want to escape from on any given day, but the point is - I needed to find some balance. And in doing so, I hope that I can set a better example for The Royal Pains.

As for Saturday evening, MathMan and I endured the intermittent griping and grousing as long as we could, then headed home. The Royal Pains didn't seem to mind riding in the trunk where we didn't have to hear them. At least they preferred that to their other option - walk home the 15 or so miles. In the dark.

So that's why you might not be seeing me among the internets like you're used to seeing me. Why, just this morning, MathMan and I got out into the fresh air and took advantage of the morning light to take photos. We headed out Chulio Road, not far from our house, toward Rome, Georgia and stopped in this little old farming community to take some photos. Since moving to Georgia, I've gained whole new appreciation for abandoned buildings. Where city structures are often torn down to make room for new development, old structures in rural areas are most often left standing, becoming part of the landscape. I like that because you have history standing there before you. Anyway, meet my new obsession.....

This stone structure looks like it was once a home and commercial establishment. Or two. I'm anxious to do some research and find out what it was. It's got all these funky stone structures including a well, benches, an armchair, planters shaped like baskets, a moat (I'm not kidding), footbridges and a patio with built-in benches.

This place now tops the list of things I must own when I win the lottery.

I could cut out a lot of research time and just call the people who are trying to sell it, I suppose, but then I'll be all awkward because there's no way we could dream of buying the place and how goofy would it be to phone them up, ask a bunch of questions about the place and then be all "Well, thanks so much, gotta go?"

Of course, considering how unique the place is, that probably wouldn't be the first or last time they get that call.......I wonder if they'd hold it for me until we win the MegaMillions.....?

As we drove home from our photo-taking frenzy - which is much more fun than a cleaning frenzy - I mentioned to MathMan that the stone structure would make a great setting for a story......

Anyway, my apologies for being a lousy blogfriend and not being the loyal reader I once was. I'll be back to it when the beautiful weather and interesting books aren't tugging at me so.

Until then........


  1. Lousy blogfriend? Not a loyal reader? Is that you copy catting me or me copy catting you?

    I love the stones - wow!!

    And do tell me more about Valeria's Last Stand. As soon as my class is over at the end of June, I want to read a non-theology book. And what better source to go to for such a thing than you?!

  2. Don't worry...Everybody's slowed down! (Not just you and me!) Haven't ya noticed? I'm not goin anywhere....

  3. How different our pictures of the same subject turned out.

  4. I love the pictures.

    Since I grew up in the South (born in Atlanta, lived in Charlotte, N.C., and in the metro Birmingham, AL area) I have seen many buildings like this. I love the old buildings you see along the 2 lane roads. We used to travel between Birmingham and Atlanta before I-20 was completed, and you saw a lot of this along U.S. 78 in towns like Heflin, Tallapoosa, Bremen, Villa Rica, etc. I sometimes miss those views.

  5. never apologize for living's a far greater gift than the electronic device I am attatched to at this moment. I'm going to set myself free in a minute, but sadly, some housework is in store.........ugh!

  6. I love stone buildings. And I've read "Death Comes for the Archbishop" twice, and both times, I craved Mexican food.

  7. I have been somewhat disconnected too as of late. I think it must be that spring fever thingy. We all need our vitamin D.

    As for the stone compound; what a cool place! Let us know what the background of this interesting little hideaway holds. I would love to hear about it.

    Have a great week!

  8. We've got to hang out some time, I love library book sales, Latino food, cupcakes, and abandoned old buildings too.

  9. Yeah, get off your butt and show some loyalty.

    And bring the tortilla chips and some guacamole...

  10. Never apologize for having an actual life.

    That is a nifty stone house. Wonder if all the yard stuff grew out of trying to suck more tourists into getting out of their cars and lingering, or if the owner just had way too much time on his hands?

  11. "One Hundred Years of Solitude" is written in the style known as "Magical Realism". You may be craving psychiatry rather than SA food when you begin reading. [That said, I *did* like it...both in English and Spanish.]

    I, too, am trying to un-plug a little more these days. There's badminton to be played, bowling to be conquered, books to be read, beaches to visit...

    ...Yay for summer!

  12. Good for you, unplugging.

    The stone place is very cool.

    I wish we could spend more than just a couple hours with you this summer as part of the mighty road trip. Hey, I know! Why don't you caravan with us once we reach Georgia? We could find plenty of cupcakes and guacamole along the way westward, and spend our final day together at Powell's in Portland, mecca of used books.

    You know, your kids would probably just LOVE riding in the trunk for 3,000 miles.

  13. "A Hundred Years of Solitude" is one of my all time favorite books. I've read it at least four time.

    Sounds like real life suits you.

  14. Ohhh, One Hundred Years of Solitude is one of my ALL time favorite books, ever ever. It's kind of annoying in the beginning but after you slog through that, it's amazing.

    As for the stone house...Betty has built stone stairs and this pretty stone walkway around her garden. I know how much work that was - can't even imagine the house.

  15. If there is a more beautiful writer than Garcia Marquez, I haven't read him. Solitude and Love in the Time of Cholera are without a doubt my favorite pieces of any kind of writing. Lush, full of life and magic and love and lust and sex and despair and sadness. I am thrilled for anyone who sits down and reads 100 Years of Solitude for the first time, because it's like opening a treasure chest that looks small but is really bottomless.

    I love the pics, as always. Sometimes you have to step away from the computer, no matter how hard it may be.

  16. I only got through about 8 years of solitude on several attempts. Best of luck

  17. I love the last 5 pictures. Very rustic and sylvan, the perfect place for quiet contemplation. I can easily see myself peacefully reading a book among those mossy stones. Actually, it would be the perfect venue for an early 19th century Romantic poem, most likely one written by Keats.

    A truly beautiful photoset, Lisa. Bravo.

  18. A former lover gave me One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez as a birthday gift a few years back. We ended things (on a good note) a few months later and I still haven’t gotten around to reading it. It IS on the list, in fact it has made it as far as the living room coffee table along with several other titles…. Someday….

    Oh, and your weekend sounds lovely!

  19. That stone house/store/?? would absolutely be a fantastic setting; I wholeheartedly support your investigations even though they take you away from us online.

    P.S. One Hundred Years of Solitude + the found letter + South American cuisine ought to make for a glorious summer escape. I want to hear about it someday...

  20. Hell, I plan on taking some time off too. Enjoy the summer.

  21. Thanks for the link! :) I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one who cleans in a frenzy to that "peppy" song! *grin*

    So...what the heck did the letter in that book say?? I'm dying to know! :)

    Also, great pics! Iwanski and I love abandoned buildings, too--although he is more likely to wander into one of them than I am. He's all adventurous, and I'm all worried that the ceiling's gonna cave in. :)

  22. The stone structure looks like it could have been a mercantile once upon a time selling homegrown garden goods or honey perhaps.

    Beautiful none the less...a shame it is abandoned. Where I come from the abandoned properties out number the occupied properties by nearly two to one.

    If walls could talk...

    The first house I ever owned was an abandoned house on four acres that I spent nearly five years those walls talked alot, but that is another story.

  23. Phone them up, ask a bunch of questions about the place and then tell them that you are sorry, but you have lost interest, that you don't like the shower curtains.

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  25. that building is amazing and the stonework....well, I don't think I've ever seen stonework like that!! and it's beautiful in it's overgrown green-ness too, of course your photography is amazing...

    glad you are taking time to enjoy life in the fresh air!

  26. Old stone and greenery, very cool place.

  27. Oh I hear you.... I get going on the internets, reading just one more blog post here & there & BAM! hours have passed by.

    I really must do more about having a real life too.

    **forcing self to step away from the computer**

  28. I took you for your word that you wouldn't be posting . . . and have now discovered that your idea of "no posting" would be me on speed!

    I hope you get your groovy stone house (with moat) someday, Lisa.

  29. I love old buildings like that - what wonderful pictures.

    So what was in the letter you found inside the Hundred Years of Solitude book? Anything interesting? Maybe you could use the contents of the letter coupled with the mysterious stone house and come up with a bestselling novel?


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